Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas on October 7, 1974 · Page 5
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October 7, 1974

Northwest Arkansas Times from Fayetteville, Arkansas · Page 5

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Fayetteville, Arkansas
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Monday, October 7, 1974
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siiffl^ . ECO-LOGUE | By AUI3RKY SHEPHERD TIMES Outdoor Writer Every year about this time I fall in love again--not with a human female but Mother Earth. Mine's not a pure love either: It's a form of jealous possessiveness that starts me to thinking of buying a piece of Northwest Arkansas woodlands. When I'm thus harvest-moonstruck, I'll go to great lengths to select a suitable object of my land-lust. First I start mooning after my favorite hunting spots. In certain instances I have been too late with my expression of interest. Three years ago I walked onto the best 160 acre tract of hardwood, deer-and-squirrel habitat I'd ever . seen and discovered that some unthinking profit-hungry realtor had bought it, divided it into four parts, sold each of the four for more than he had paid for the whole and cheated his four buyers of the best part of the bargain by selling the timber rights to some fly-by-night and clear-cut-by-day lumber dealer. I had been in love with that section of land for two years without even guessing that a comparatively small price of $3,500 would have bought it. The sub-divider made $18,000 on the transaction and left me with a terribly sick feeling. But this is typical of my fall affairs with Mother Earth. Usually I begin by wanting to buy one of the not- yet-cut-over spots in order simply to preserve it. Then it occurs to me that I need to make my investment do double duty. So I try to select a section of land with a really spectacular home site on it. This year I visited a landowner whose holdings are adjacent to one of my favorite tracts and would you believe it? He and the other property owners thereabouts -- including the owners of the land of my dreams -- have signed an agreement to give the county a 60-foot easement to widen the road through the area. A sixty-foot road through that area will require blasting out huge rock formations, cutting dozens of century-old trees and reducing the available wildlife habitat considerably. Actually, the road does need widening for safety's sake, but it may not need to be the full width of the new easement. This is one of those situations where progress and change are needed. However, the location is a truly beautiful mountainside and the plants and rocks which will be moved are particularly charming. It would be futile to ask that the widening not take place. However, it is hardly unreasonable to suggest that the county authorities and the peqple who do the planning and actrial road work make an effort to insure that the least possible damage be done to the environment. An old friend asked, "After years of keeping your hunting and fishing spots and methods secret, why do you suddenly begin publishing information which has taken you years to compile? Don't you value the knowledge of a secret hot spot or a special way of working a lure as you used to do?" This question may appear to involve an overall personality change, but actually the only change is in, intensity. I still wish to have secret smallmouth streams or largemotith ponds or squirrelly mountainsides. But even if I owned these spots they could never be mine alone. In every case another human being or maybe several shares the secret, and besides, nothing really special is entirely satisfactory unless it is shared. But more important is the growing realization that the best things in this world cannot be protected unless a large number of people care for them. I hope that by learning where to go and what to do after getting there, other outdoorsmen will come to love and want to preserve pond or stream or mountainside An example of a fishing stream which like the mountain discussed above is somewhat threatened is Clear Creek, which runs from Lake Fayetteville to the Illinois River. Clear Creek is marvelous smallmouth bass habitat. It is too s m a l l t o satisfy all the fish hunger of the area, but for those persons more in terested in a delightful experience wading in clear, cool water and catching some strong-fighting if small fish than in roaring about some big reservoir in a motorboat the stream is perfect. With plans being readied for two bridges across Clear Creek in Washington County, the time seems right for saying a word about two ways of building Some bridges, though only two lanes wide, seem to require two acres of land for construction: Others seem to be fitted into the smallest possible break in the forest or field: this is the sort of bridge building done before earth moving was as easy as it now appears. A bridge built by the second plan is hard to spo from very far away. In fact, someone walking along the stream's edge may not be able to see the thinj until he gets within 100 feet or so. The first sort of bridge, however, is all too com mon nowadays. With fhe development of modern eartl moving machines, a tendency to clear a path widt enough to insert four bridges has become the rule One sad example of this sort was recently constructet on Highway 16 near Lake Wedington. The new bridge is smooth, and one does not have to slow to a craw in order to cross it safely. But a huge space along the river was created. As much as an acre of grouni was cleared with no apparent purpose. In contrast, an old style bridge across the Illinois River near Viney Grove is overhung with trees, and grass lushly grows to the very edge of the guard rails on either side. Signs are needed on the approaches to the bridge, for it is dangerous. But a safe replacement for it undoubtedly could be built without clearing two or three acres of land. Mother Earth is a pretty old dame, and she can do without the sort of "admirers" who would attack her and leave her injured as so many of these road-and bridge builders do. She deserves more of the gentler sort of lovers. Projected Tab For Cleaner Water Rises In the lalcst survey on how uch money is needed to meet. dcral water quality standards' r municipal wastewater by 33, the states have tallied a tal estimate of $350 billion -- joul six times t h e - $ 6 0 billion tal estimate of a year ago. I Arkansas' needs this year were ejected at $828 million as corn- red to estimated costs of $224 Ilion one year ago. The calculations came about s a result of the recent nvironmental P r o t e c t i o n gency's needs survey. EPA Is stressed with fhe results, and o agency's head, Russell E. ·ain, said, "Bused on our pre- minary assessment of the ata, 1 believe these totals really overslale Ihe costs ot eeling the Act's 1983 goals." EXPLAINED WHY EPA explained some ot Ihe easons lor the increase as due 5 the most recent study's in- usion of provisions for storm- ater runoff. In Ihe year-old study, the $235 Ilion for stormwaler provi- ons was nol included. This xlra amount accounts for 67 er cent of the total estimated eeds. Also, in this year's survey, tales had greater leeway in stimating costs -- many anti- ipalcd expenditures "did not ave lo be documented. A 15 er cent inflation rate in the vastewater treatment plant onstruction industry also ac- ounled for some of the jump. COSTS PADDED But EPA also contends that e states tried to pad their ost estimates in hopes of r etling more money from the ederal government. In a Senate public works learing in September, Sen. Edmund Muskio quoted a letter rom the state of Oregon's s e w e r works construction division. In the leller, the Oregon official commented on the sub- milted cost estimates: "This year our Needs Survey will ihow costs of nearly $2 billion. Isn't that absurd? We don't mve a need of $2 billion. "But in order to make sure New York or Ohio or California don't absorb our meager bounty and to realize the unrealizable requirements of Public Law 92500 (the water quality law), we dream up a whole program that will never fly and then project funding levels for it." NEW FORMULAS Until 1972, federal grants for wastewater treatment plants were figured by state population and per capita income combined. But with the 1972 water quality laws, Congress changed Ihe method for granting aid. The formula made grants to states according to Ihe .ratio of the needs of the individual states to the needs of the nation as a whole. Consideration is now also given as to the needs of states for specific types of pollution controls in addition to wastewater treatment. NKED MORE MONEY Since the funding authorization for the construction grants program is up by the end of 1975, Congress will have to provide for more money, and perhaps another allotment or delay the construction grants program. Some congressmen would prefer waiting on legislative consideration of the matter until after EPA submits a Needs Survey, expected next February. Meanwhile, if the $D billion for the 1973-75 construction grants program impounded by former President Nixon could be released, the program would not come to a complete standstill or face hassles if it were respnted to Congress for re- nnding in December, before JPA's report. Northwest Arkansas TIMES, Monday, Oct. 7. 1974 FAYITTIVILLt, AKKAN1A* Jack Frost Loses Credibility The Right Idea OTASCO's new store now under construction at Ilwys. 71- and 62 will be fronted with a. row of stately maples a n d . oaks rather than the usual bare, 1)1 acktopped parking lot. According to one of the project's promoters, everyone is involved in putting forth the effort (o save the few trees that line Hwy. 71. Fayetle- ville's Community Appear- ance comniitlee, the F o r t Smith contractor for (he job, a n d Paul Marks, f r o m OTASCO's headquarters In Tulsa, Otla., all have expressed interest in saving the trees. Success depends on providing adequate u n p a v e d space around the trees by careful placement of curbing (TIMESphoto by Chuck Cunningham) By PEGGY TIMES Staff Writer Read no f u r t h e r if you don't care to have one of your most cherished beliefs blasted. But if you are the kind of person who wanls to know the Truth, no matter what the consequences, read on. Jack Frost is a fraud. That story about good old Jack tripping through the country every year to paint the trees? It's false. It's all a giant sham. He's been claiming Ihe credit for too long and he's been found out. (But I doubt if Ihe age-old myth will change anyway.) Last week, while walking through the city park, I got the whole scoop from a tall, sedate maple tree. I was minding my own business and admiring the beginning of fall when this huge old maple reached down and tapped me on the shoulder. "Jack Frost's a phony," he said, in a low voice. '"What?" I replied, somewhat taken aback. ; - . . - · "He's a fraud,", the t r e e repeated. "There must be some mistake," I said. "Surely you are not talking about Jack Frost, the leaf-painting artist." The tree grumbled. "He's an artist all right, a con artist. Has people believing he's responsible for 'all the colorful fall foliage." ·"'."Arc' you .saying he. Isn't?" I asked incredulously. "Exactly. It all began as a kind of jpke, back when I was a mere seed. I neard the grown, up trees talking with Frost one year. Seems he talked them all into transforming t h e routine change of seasons into a fall extravaganza. Frost suggested capitalizing on the many-colored leaves worn by the trees during autumn. "Then to make the slory even better, he urged them to adopt a narrative about a little man and his paint set who prances through the forests frantically painting all the leaves. "Frost told them they'd have sideshow' that couldn't be beat." The tree paused before continuing. "The trouble is, the old trees are gone now and Frost las managed to brainwash the younger trees into believing he's the one who brings on the annual festival of colors. It's a real shame." . .1 nodded. "But if it's not Jack Frost, what does make the leaves change color?" "The pigment in the leaves," the tree replied, "The leaf has three pigments inside its green color, and as conditions become unfavorable--unusually cold or dry weather, for example--the leaf begins to lose its green color and its. capacity for photo synthesis. "This leaves the yellow and orange colors which begin to show o f f . Then the sugar In th« epidermal cells activates th« red pigment. The three pigments mix together and with the remaining green on the leaf and produce a palette of colors. 01 course, the tree's genetic makeup also has a say in the tones and brilliance of certain colors." "That's very impressive," I admitted. "And I agree that it isn't right that someone like Jack should take all the glory. On the other hand, you've got to admit, he tells a good slory." As I walked off, I think I detected a scowl on the tree's upper bough. Still Concerned A n e w l y - r e l e a s e d Environmental Protection Agency opinion survey shows that the recent fuel shortage has not diminished the citizens' desire to eliminate pollution. A previous sample in 1973 showed widespread concern about damage to Ihe environment, a sense of impatience about the progress made in environmental proteclion, and a willingness lo pay for a better environment. The latest study showed little change in these attitudes despite the energy shorlage lhat began in the second half of 1973. Cotton Damaged By 2,4-D Damaged colton crops are a result of the iise of the herbicide, 2,4-D, on rice crops, cotton farmers told a state legislative committee recently. In addressing the Joint Interim Committee on Economic and Industrial Resources and Development, farmers claimed that winds carry the 2,4-D over nearby cotton acreage. The effect, they say, is devastating. The farmers want the legislature to take some regulatory action. Several fish farmers a l s o showed up at the committee meeting to demand that the state stop cotton farmers from spraying cndrin and t h a t the state make farmers closely control the use of Toxaphene. These farmers said the growing. fish farming industry is at stake. Tho two chemicals, used as insecticides for cotton, are causing massive poisonings on fish farms, Ihey said. The chemicals in 2,4-D are hormone herbicides because ol their effect which Is to cause unwanted, wide-leafed foliage lo grow itself lo dealh. Cotton is a wide-leafed plant. But an Arkansas Farm Bureau Federation official asked the committee not lo legislate on 2, 4-D saying such action would be turned into a forum for demands that certain pesticides and herbicides be banned. The commitlee plans to rnee Oct. 25 for the final lime before the 1975 legislature convenes. Henry DeSalvo from the state Plant Board said that agenc; has been wrestling with the 2-4 D problem since 1351 and has revised its regulations 17 timef since then. These regulation, concern the sprayer and con ditions for spraying. One cotton gin operator from Harrisburg, F r e d Harrell noted, "It is getting harder t grow colton every year because of the mis-use of 2-4-D. It i my hope that the legislature can come up with some equil able solution that will allow u to continue growing cotton i: Arkansas." NWF Calls For Eco-Conference A N a t i o n a l Wildlife 'ederation official has called on 'resident Ford to schedule an 'environment a n d natural ·esources conservation summit" lo be held under White House auspices. Executive Vice-President of the NWF, Tom Kimball, indicated in his letter lo Ford that he hoped for belter response rom fhe new President than lad been received from former President Nixon, How to achieve economic stability and Ihe wise use and development of natural resources without diminishing the quality of living or polluting the environment is 'a major question, Kimball said. "The trade-offs must be carefully considered and the critical decisions should be made only after thoughtful and complete review of all available facts and alternatives," he wrote. The letter to Ford noted that the new President has met.with industry and labor leaders on economic problems. Kimbajl said these problems "revolve around environmental as well as economic considerations." He suggested that a meeting with environmentalists would allow Ford a chance to gain Ihe "opinions of a very broad spectrum of tho public. AWG tells you-- how the energy, shortage affects YOU. Natural Gas is still the Biggest Bargain in your family budget*use it and youll be helping to conserve our nation s energy, and saving money, too. Electric companies burn coal, oil and natural gas to generate about 82% of the; country's electricity. In the generation and distribution of electricity, only 28% of the ·energy available in those natural resourcer is delivered to your home as usable energ Natural gas, unlike electricity, is piped directly from the wellhead to your home. As very little energy is used to move gas through the pipelines, 93% of the availab, energy is delivered.'to the appliances. "" ·· Therefore, on a natj'prial average bash GAS FURNACES iise'less than one-half;; as much of our natural energy resources': and cost only one-third as much to oper" ate as similar electric furnaces. GAS WATER HEATERS use less than one-half as much of our natural energy resources and cost only one-fourth as much to operate as similar electric water heaters. GAS RANGES use less of natural energy resources and cost less than one-half as much to operate 1 as similar electric ranges. GAaCLOTHES DRYERS, use.less than one-third as much of our natural energy resources and cost only one-fifth as much to operate as similar electric dryers. At Arkansas Western, we recognize the existence of a growing national energy · shortage. Solving it is within fhe grasp of American technology but it will take both time and money. For the present, you can help --by conserving natural energy. AND THE BEST WAY TO CONSERVE ENERGY IN YOUR HOME IS TO USE 'NATURAL GAS FOR ALL THE JOBS IT DOES BEST. F Arkansas Western Gas Ca

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