April 20, 2024 9:34 am
Close this search box.

Local News

Georgia Receiving Nearly $8 Million to Create Green Spaces

Credit: iStock

Shanteya Hudson, Public News Service

Organizations in Georgia are getting an opportunity to develop and enhance green spaces to help mitigate some effects of climate change.

Through the Bezos Earth Fund’s Greening America’s Cities initiative, nine groups in Atlanta have received nearly $8 million to create more parks, community gardens, nature trails and tree canopies.

Andrew Steer, president and CEO of the Bezos Earth Fund, emphasized with the increasing frequency of extreme weather events and rising temperatures, the role of green spaces in climate resilience becomes even more crucial.

“Cities are much hotter in those areas because there is more concrete, there’s less grass and trees to absorb the heat,” Steer explained. “In the city areas it can be nine degrees hotter than the suburbs.”

Steer pointed out more people in the city are likely to face additional health concerns or even death from the heat. According to the Environmental Protection Agency, about 1,300 people die in the U.S. every year due to heat-related causes.

Acknowledging the unequal distribution of urban green space and its disproportionate impact on low-income areas, Steer noted the Bezos Earth Fund deliberately selected organizations with strong ties to the communities they serve.

“It is absolutely crucial that we find a way of putting the resources right on the front lines,” Steer asserted. “It’s s very tempting to provide funding through national organizations, who are also excellent. At the end of the day, it is the front line communities, the little platoons, that actually are making an incredible difference.”

In addition to Atlanta, the grant is providing support to 24 organizations in Wilmington, Delaware; Albuquerque, New Mexico; Chicago and Los Angeles. Steer added the fund will actively continue this initiative until 2030.

This article originally appeared on Public News Service and is republished here under a Creative Commons license.

Georgia Legislature approves coverage to help first responders cope with job-related PTSD treatment

The Ashley Wilson Act, named for Gwinnett police sergeant Ashley Wilson, passed unanimously in the Georgia House of Representatives, aiming to provide supplemental health insurance for first responders diagnosed with PTSD due to on-the-job experiences. This landmark legislation, celebrated for its potential to significantly aid in the recovery and support of traumatized first responders, reflects a broader recognition of PTSD’s serious impact on public safety personnel, promising financial and treatment support beginning January 1, 2025.

FAFSA delays pose challenges for Georgia college-bound students

Students across Georgia are facing delays in the Free Application for Federal Student Aid (FAFSA) process, particularly challenging due to its late January rollout and additional complications for mixed-status families. Despite these setbacks, the Department of Education has implemented fixes for major issues, and officials, including MorraLee Keller of the National College Attainment Network, urge students not to give up on securing financial aid for college.