Category Archives: News and Such

Hope Floats – Man-made islands create ecosystems to heal polluted rivers

Here is a repost from our blog over at Patriot LWM:

A few years ago, Patriot Land and Wildlife was fortunate to be involved with an innovative water quailty improvement project in Washington, DC on the Anacostia River. Teamed with Bluewing Environmental Solutions and Technologies, Patriot LWM helped install several BioHaven Floating Treatment Wetlands at Diamond Teague Park in DC, with the intention of providing much-needed water quality improvement. These BioHaven islands are capable of removing as many nutrients from the waterbody as 6 acres of natural wetlands.

Diamond Teague is just across the street from the Washington Nationals baseball stadium and is a popular riverside destination for ballpark patrons, among others. The dual functionaility of water quality stewardship and ornamental landscaping allowed for a great project to occur, and lots of attention drawn to the problems suffered by our waterways.  Author Mike Cronin of “The Daily” spotlights the project.

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It turns out that recycled plastic may do more for the environment than just save it from unnecessary garbage. Man-made floating islands constructed from the stuff are helping to revive urban rivers devastated by centuries of industrial pollution.The Anacostia River in Washington, D.C., for example, has been slowly coming back to life, roughly two years after the Maryland-based company Blue Wing Environmental Solutions and Technology anchored seven man-made islands there in an area near Nationals Park, where the Washington Nationals play. Those islands are the brainchild of Bruce and Anne Kania, the married couple who run Floating Islands International in Shepherd, Mont.“We are providing an affordable, doable, non-chemical solution, and people are going, ‘Aha!’ ” said Anne, Floating Islands’ CEO.Bruce realized years ago that wetlands work naturally to clean up pollutants, so the Kanias started mimicking floating ecosystems with recycled fiber from plastic bottles.
Just days after the floating islands are placed in the water, a film of bacteria and other microbes forms on the mesh filters and other plastic parts of the fake landmasses, said Bruce, adding that the microbes eat nutrients and form biofilm in the process. Biofilm is the base of periphyton, which is in turn the base of the freshwater food chain. Everything from zooplankton to nymphs and minnows thrive off it.“They clean up the water and take nutrients that otherwise would have turned into algae and turn them into fish food,” said Bruce, who got the idea for the floating islands after observing the natural, peat-based floating islands of northern Wisconsin.“Three years ago, we could see only 14 inches into our 6.5-acre research pond,” he said. “Now, we can see 11 feet into it.”

The Kanias founded their company in 2005. Today they have seven manufacturers worldwide and 4,000 islands in use around the globe. Customers pay roughly $27 per square foot and may order any shape or size of floating island, which can be used in rivers, ponds, lakes and even the ocean.
Kevin Hedge, a wetland scientist and partner at Blue Wing, sees the synthetic islands as more than just a savior to an ailing environment.

“The floating islands are an ecological-restoration tool that also can be an economic-recovery tool,” he said.

Lanshing Hwang, the Maryland landscape architect who designed the island park in Washington, called it “an innovative approach — particularly for places that don’t have wetlands.

By Mike Cronin Saturday – May 21, 2011

Welcome to “Just Looking Busy”

This blog is meant to bring to one place the many interesting aspects that make up my day. Facebook has proven to be a less than desirable way to share thoughts and ideas with like minded individuals, so welcome to this blog.

KENTLAND FIREFIGHTERS RECEIVE MEDALS OF VALOR

On Wednesday, April 27th, 2011, Prince George’s County Maryland held its 34th annual Public Safety Luncheon to honor the County’s Police, Sheriff, Fire/EMS, Corrections and Homeland Security members. The event was hosted by County Executive Rushern L. Baker III and MC’d by Wisdom Martin and Paul Wagner of Fox 5 news DC. Among the honored recipients were Joe Brown, a Volunteer Captain with the Kentland Volunteer Fire Department and Tony Kelleher, the Chief of Kentland. Joe received a Silver Medal of Valor and Tony received a Bronze Medal of Valor for there actions at an apartment fire on April 26th, 2010. 

Click here for the story from Kentland33.com

 
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FIRE ENGINEERING BLOG IS FINALLY READY

After much anticipation on my part I am proud to announce my honored participation in the new Fire Engineering Blog Network. The network is being towted by Fire Engineering as “Some of the Fire Service’s Best Minds Offer Advice and Opinion”. I am honored to be a part of this great group of bloggers; guys Ray McCormack, Mark Gregory, Ricky Riley, Gabriel Angemi and more. There should be a fresh faced version of the blog in May so bare that in mind as you look it over. Check it out and let me know what you think! 

http://www.fireengineering.com/index/blogs/joe-brown.html

Business Gazette Article Features Patriot LWM

From the Patriot LWM Blog:

In a welcome ”coincidence”, the same day we celebrated the memory of an American Hero, an article with his name in it was published. We waited a day to put this story up to allow Kirk’s memory to be properly honored. Now, here is the article from the Business Gazette featuring Patriot Land and Wildlife. Hope you enjoy it.

CLICK HERE FOR STORY ON GAZETTE.NET

THE DC GENERALS GET A SHOUT OUT ON FOX MORNING NEWS

Here is a video and story from when my man Aaron Foster and I teamed up to promote the good word of charity football and Wildfire Adventures!

As seen on the DC Generals Site:

The DC Generals will be helping out at the Wildfire Adventure Race booth at the DC Travel and Adventure Expo (www.adventureexpo.com). Fox Morning News’ Holly Morris was on site today and stopped by the booth to check it out. Watch the video below. Be sure to go to the Adventure Expo site and enter promo code DCGEN to get your free pass to the show! Pick up a DC Generals t-shirt while your there!

http://www.myfoxdc.com/video/videoplayer.swf?dppversion=8705

Holly Morris – Travel and Adventure Show: MyFoxDC.com

TT Instructors Receive Awards for Valor

As seen on the Traditions Training Blog:

Congratulations are in order for Traditions Training instructor Joe Brown, who was recognized last week for his role in rescuing Prince George’s County firefighter Daniel McGown.  Brown (left), a Captain with the Kentland Vol. Fire Department, was the officer of Rescue Engine 33 operating at a house fire in April 2009.  While performing a search, he heard an activated PASS device and quickly located FF McGown at the entrance to the fire room, who was unconscious and without a face piece.  Brown quickly transmitted a MAYDAY, packaged FF McGown, and removed him to a window where other members of RE-833 assisted in utilizing a “Denver Drill” style maneuver Lito take him out the window. Last week, Capt. Brown was awarded a Gold Medal of Valor by the Prince George’s County Fire Department for his actions at this incident.

Brown, Walter Joe_3x5

Tony Kelleher (right), also a TT instructor, is the Chief of Kentland and received a bronze medal of valor for his actions as the incident commander in managing and coordinating the rescue effort and the house fire simultaneously. Thankfully, despite life threatining injuries, FF McGown has made a full recovery and is back on the job.

This succuessful rescue is another testement to the value of a constant COMBAT READY attitude and excellent training.

Well done, men! You make us proud!

Link to PGFD Story on the Awards & Incident

Link to Kentland VFD Story on the Fire

KENTLAND VOLUNTEERS FEATURED IN APRILS FIRE ENGINEERING

The April issue of Fire Engineering sporting a nostalgic cover in celebration of the history of the “National Fireman’s Journal” also referenced 2 members from the Kentland Volunteer Fire Department. In the article “The Two-Team Truck Company”  Kentland Volunteer Nick Martin looks at maximizing efficiency and accomplishing essential truck company tasks during the attack phase of a structural fire in true Kentland fashion.

This issue also contains Tower Ladder Captain Joe Browns nomination for the prestigious 2010 Ray Downey Courage & Valor Award. Captain Brown was nominated for his actions during the rescue of an unconscious fellow firefighter during a 2009 house fire. http://www.kentland33.com/news/fullstory/newsid/83967

 
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