February 2009 – AggBeat
Therese Dunphy, editor-in-chief of Aggregates Manager and member of the MII Board of Directors, will serve as a member of its new Leadership Council.
For more information, go to www.mii.org or www.smenet.org.
McCook Quarry offers educational adventures
Vulcan Material Co.’s McCook Quarry provided great educational opportunities for the children of its surrounding community last fall, according to a news item on the company’s Web site. One opportunity revolved around Vulcan’s annual Earth Science Day. Nearly 125 students from LaGrange School District 105 visited the quarry to learn firsthand how science, technology, and engineering are used every day to better the world around them.
Students were treated to a guided bus tour of the quarry, examined limestone samples with fossils of shells, performed quality control tests, and discussed environmental issues. Lessons focused on an array of rock-related topics, giving students the opportunity to learn directly from Vulcan’s experts in the field. The Vulcan team discussed and demonstrated how limestone is formed, what technologies are used to explore natural resources for limestone, how limestone is mined, and how land is reclaimed.
Students have been asked to use their newfound understanding of the quarry to design mine reclamation concepts which will be presented to company officials at a later date.
The quarry also hosted its first annual Boy Scout Day. Boy Scouts from the area embarked on all sorts of quarry adventures and hands-on learning experiences.
The day began with a chartered bus tour of the quarry where the Scouts witnessed firsthand how natural resources are mined. Students then proceeded to the classroom for Geology 101 where they learned how limestone is formed and where it can be found. Following the lesson, Scouts got the opportunity to get their hands dirty in a full-fledged fossil hunt in the quarry. The Scouts who attended found themselves well on their way to earning their Geology Activity Pin, thanks to the quarry.
McCook Quarry has several additional ongoing collaborations which include Hodgkins Extended Learning Program where students at Hodgkins Elementary receive tutoring and homework help; and the annual Halloween safety program where the company distributes glow sticks to trick-or-treaters.
Greenhouse gas protocol
The National Stone, Sand and Gravel Association’s (NSSGA) Environmental Committee has developed a greenhouse gas registries (GHG) calculator to help aggregates and pulverized minerals producers calculate emissions of GHGs in an accurate, consistent, and verifiable manner. According to the NSSGA’s eDigest & Washington Watch newsletter, the calculator was developed in anticipation of the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency’s proposal to establish mandatory GHGs.
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