NASA Satellites To Be Used In US Government-Funded Study Of Barbados Coastal Ecological Health
Just two days before the big kick-off for the proposed Graeme Hall National Park in Barbados… the USA announces a federally-funded study of the ecological health of the Barbados coastal areas by Coppin State University in Baltimore, Maryland. The US$186,000 study will use NASA satellites to study the ecology of Barbados, Ghana and St. Kitts.
What’s the Slavery Connection?
Coppin State University was once called Douglass Colored School (as in Frederick Douglass, author of “Narrative of the Life of An American Slave as Written By Himself”), and the student population is still largely black from the inner city.
The students involved with the “Middle Passage Project” will be “using NASA satellites to study the ecological health of areas that played key roles in the slave trade.”
The Barbados coast is one of the areas up for study, and there is no doubt that the proposed Graeme Hall National Park will be a key focus as it is by far the largest remaining natural mangrove swamp on the island.
It wouldn’t surprise us at all if the folks doing the study contact those working to establish Graeme Hall National Park. Just seems like a natural fit to us.
NOTE: Don’t forget about the Public Meeting to Kickoff the Graeme Hall National Park Project.
Graeme Hall National Park Proposal – Public Meeting
Saturday, October 14, 2006
Graeme Hall Nature Sanctuary
Complimentary refreshments with cash bar until 7pm.
More information: (Link Here)
Previous BFP Story: Graeme Hall National Park Public Meeting
Coppin, NASA Team Up For Study of Slave Routes
Baltimore Examiner, October 12, 2006 (link here)
U.S. Rep. Elijah Cummings visited Coppin State University Wednesday to announce a federal grant using NASA satellites to study the ecological health of areas that played key roles in the slave trade.
Cummings lauded the program, called The Middle Passage Project, as an opportunity for students at the historically black college to explore their heritage.
“To set foot in Africa and explore the land of your ancestors is an incredible opportunity,” he told the assembly of students and faculty. “Take advantage of it.”
The $186,000 federal grant will allow six students in Coppin’s geography program to use satellite data provided by NASA to study the ecology of Ghana, St. Kitts and Barbados — key landfalls for slave traders. The students will use NASA satellite data to assess the ecological health of the coastlines and rain forest, as well as to assess carbon management policies. Participating students said the program was a good opportunity to improve their science skills while keeping important history alive.
“We’re using present technology to help us connect to the past,” said Micah Crump, a junior at Coppin and one of the program participants.
Douglass Reardon, project director, said that the program uses African American history as a guide to better understanding ecological systems. “We can use science to study how the environment influences human history,” he said. He also said that the data will be used to guide preservation efforts of key historical sites.
Story link here