6 Comments

Bee the Change

After almost two years of development, the Flight Path project has launched!

Produced by The Common Acre with support from the Port of Seattle, the project will turn scrub land into pollinator habitat, and transform a corner of the airport concourse into a sparkling art and education exhibit.

The project has three phases: First, we will install and manage honey bee hives at Sea-Tac airport as part of the Port's conservation program. Second (fall of 2013) we will hold Art+Science salons and other events around King County to help engage the public. Finally, we will use footage from the hives, other site data, and visual art from the region's best artists to create an exhibit inside the terminal, which will be unveiled in January 2014 and stay up for a year.

This is a multi-year project with potentially long-lasting, even revolutionary results. Imagine if every airport in the nation used their surrounding lands as pollinator habitat and a seed farm? Even in the midst of the global transportation network, we'd build support for local food systems. And by engaging artists and other creative thinkers, we'll be able to reflect and project a vision that can work for the planet.

You can get on board right now — support the program via Kickstarter, and stay tuned as the project unfolds!

6 Comments to “Bee the Change”

  1. Gene GreccoStoliesSimile'

    I think the concept is wonderful. I’d like to know that what are the opportunities for beekeepers or wanna bee’s (yes it is a pun), who would, like to keep bees along with those beekeepers who are to manage the airport bees, who want to do so or those who do not have their own places, but want to as well. I being one of them.

    For this year, I have a place to keep my bees and there is the real possibility that I may not be so privileged in the coming year. I am returning to beekeeping this year. I have seven years of combined experience in beekeeping. I once was a member of the the Puget Sound Beekeeper Association for five years and was President of it for one year.

    I live in the Renton Highlands in a Renton Housing Authority (RHA) apartment. The RHA has help me in my quest to keep bees by helping find a place to keep them.

    The apiary that I have established, I have given the name as, ” The RENTON Beekeeping Experience Project. ” As the apiary develops and strengthens, in terms of hive numbers and public awareness, I will simultaneously work to discover instruction and demonstration opportunities with schools and miscellaneous groups within the Renton city boundaries .

    I shared here this info as my way to raise awareness of my project as I try to give back to my community.

    Reply
  2. Eric

    Hi Bob,

    I listened to you talk with Ira Flatow today on Science Friday, and I have one concern regarding this project with bees at airports. By dramatically increasing insect (bee) abundance on and around airports, there will theoretically be a draw in bird and insectivore abundance. You mentioned that a goal of yours is to increase biodiversity there as well. Won’t this increase the number of bird strikes on aircraft? What are the airports’ concerns with this?

    I am currently a senior at the University of Wisconsin-Stevens Point studying Wildlife Ecology with an interest in wildlife damage management. Along with automotive collisions, airplane-bird strikes are very serious issues, and you probably know as well that all airports must manage for birds under FAA regulations.

    Aside from this concern, the project sounds great! I think utilizing these landscape “voids” is really important, and conserving pollinator populations is paramount.

    Reply
    • Bob

      Hi Eric,

      Thanks for the thoughtful note! First, the Wildlife management team we work with has safety as their #1 priority; everything we do is reviewed by them. Second, the bird hazard you describe is for large flocking birds, which habituate open ground, not the pollinator-friendly plantscapes that are presently being planted. Finally, where large birds (such as hawks) also present a hazard, the airport has a model program for removing them… and I mean physically trapping and removing them, not killing them. Drop me a line (see contact form on this site) and I can connect you directly with the Wildlife Manager at Sea-Tac, who could give you more details and might be an interesting source for you given your field of study.

      Reply
  3. Sandi

    Why not call for a full boycott of all Monsanto products. As you know, these people also tried to control and patent all crop seeds and sued farmers who did not plant but had their seeds growing in their fields. Russia has banned these pesticides, why can’t we.

    Reply
  4. Laura Galbato

    Hi! I’m co-organizing the Moms Across America March to Label GMOs event in Carnation, WA on July 4. As you know, this is a national event with people marching in parades across the country. I need your help in letting people know about the local parade in order to get people to sign up to march in the parade. Here’s the link: http://www.momsacrossamerica.com/laurag/washington_carnation_4th_of_july_celebration_parade_rt_203_w_morrison

    If you want flyers or a jpg image for the event, I can email that to you. Thanks so much in advance for your help. Regards, Laura

    Reply
    • Redmond

      Hi Laura–you can send us an image to scarecrow-at-commonacre-org. Good luck with your event!

      Reply

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