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Deal appoints new Ga. EPD director

Deal appoints new Ga. EPD director

ATLANTA -- Jud Turner has been appointed director of the Environmental Protection Division of the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

The DNR board made the appointment official this week after Gov. Nathan Deal nominated Turner for the post.

Turner replaces F. Allen Barnes, who is leaving to work in the private sector.

Turner is a founding partner in the law firm Turner, Bachman & Garrett LLC and public affairs firm Georgia360 LLC. He was former Gov. Sonny Perdue's lead attorney and represented the governor during negotiations with the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers and U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service during the state's severe drought.

Turner has also served as general counsel to the Georgia Department of Education.

Gwinnett celebrates America Recycles Day

Gwinnett celebrates America Recycles Day

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. -- Gwinnett officials are planning the county's second annual America Recycles Day celebration.

Hosted by the Gwinnett County Solid Waste Division, the event will take place from 9 a.m. to noon on Saturday, Nov. 19 at Coolray Field, home of the Gwinnett Braves.

"This event emphasizes the importance of environmental sustainability for the future of Gwinnett County, in addition to giving back to those in need," said Tom Keith, director of the Solid Waste Division.

In addition to recycling, paper shredding, tire disposal and electronics turn-in, the celebration will include touch-a-truck displays, family activities, giveaways and refreshments. There will be a $10 fee to recycle televisions; everything else is free. Attendees are encouraged to bring canned food for the Salvation Army.

Coolray Field is located at 1 Braves Avenue in Lawrenceville.

Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center holds Sustainable Gingerbread House competition

Gwinnett Environmental & Heritage Center holds Sustainable Gingerbread House competition

Gwinnett County - for the 2nd time the Gwinnett Environmental and Heritage Center is holding a community gingerbread house competition.  The competition is open to families, schools, adults, and even professional bakers. There are different categories for each to keep the judging fair. Wouldn't you like to be a judge... More info is in the press release below:

Green Gingerbread Houses - is there such a thing? Who doesn’t love making adorable gingerbread houses with the family or looking at the intricate works of professional gingerbread house architects?

“Imagine building your dream house with all the sustainable features possible.

Drought spreads into North Georgia

Drought spreads into North Georgia

ATLANTA -- Georgia's state climatologist says extreme drought conditions have now spread into North Georgia and cover most of the state south of the mountains.

Climatologist David Stooksbury says all of Georgia's counties are now classified as being in moderate, severe or extreme drought.

In his most recent reports on the drought, Stooksbury said the outlook for relief in the short-term is not promising. Unless Georgia sees some tropical weather over the next few months, the state can expect below-normal rainfall and above-normal temperatures.

Without tropical rain, Georgia's soil is expected to continue to dry out. Stream flows, groundwater levels and reservoir levels are expected to continue to drop, and wildfire potentials are expected to remain high to extreme.

RAW VIDEO: Lawrenceville Brush Fire

LAWRENCEVILLE, Ga. – Early Monday afternoon, Gwinnett County firefighters responded to a brush fire on Interstate 85 Southbound, just north of Lawrenceville-Suwanee Road in Suwannee.

Emergency crews discovered and contained about two-acres of brush on fire in an area between the interstate and Saw Mill Road.

Authorities say there were no immediate exposure hazards and that no vehicles or structures were damaged.

The cause of the fire is undetermined.

ACP to hold Martial Arts Exhibition to promote peace

ACP to hold Martial Arts Exhibition to promote peace

DULUTH – On August 19, the Association of Chinese Professionals will serve as hosts to a Martial Arts troupe from Bejing who have won national or world titles in the past ten years.

The show will be performed by some of the best martial arts athletes in China. The athletes will be first-boxing, Taichi, sparring and other type of martial arts. Organizers say the event will “showcase traditional and modern martial arts which will reflect the spirit of harmony and health, and enable attendees to feel the charm of Wushu and to appreciate Chinese culture”.

This will be the troupe’s third show of their tour that is being held to “promote friendship and peace between China and the United States of America”. The troupe will also perform in Washington D.C. and the General Assembly Hall of the United Nations in New York City.

Tickets can be purchased at the Perimeter Church at 9500 Medlock Bridge Road in Duluth.

Droughts signals bad news for peanut butter lovers

Droughts signals bad news for peanut butter lovers

ATLANTA -- It's been 30 years since so few acres of peanuts were planted in Georgia.

The shortage and ongoing drought are bringing higher prices for peanuts and their favorite cousin -- peanut butter.

The acreage is down because farmers chose to plant cotton, which was commanding higher prices. It was thought plenty of peanuts would still be available, but many of the plants have not come out of the ground due to drought.

The situation has peanut butter manufacturers bracing for tighter supplies, according to Don Koehler with the Georgia Peanut Commission.

Georgia is the nation's largest producer of peanuts, producing 46 percent of U.S. peanuts.