GAINING CONSENSUS: THE STORY OF ''OAK RIDGE TENNESSEE - A CITIZEN'S GUIDE TO THE ENVIRONMENT''

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In 2001, a diverse group of citizens ranging from conservationists to industrial developers joined forces to produce a factual description of Oak Ridge's environment and the issues associated with contamination on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) reservation. This consensus effort was a result of common values not generally seen in this spectrum of philosophies, and of shared concerns about rising property taxes, declining city services, fleeing retail establishments, and diminishing real estate values. These problems are attributed to waning local DOE budgets coupled with Oak Ridge's national reputation of being contaminated and unsafe. This undeserved reputation harms the city's ... continued below

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10 pages

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Craig, Robert; Freeman, Jenny; Gawarecki, Susan L; Hardy, Parker; Kopp, Steve; Mulvenon, Norman A et al. February 27, 2003.

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Description

In 2001, a diverse group of citizens ranging from conservationists to industrial developers joined forces to produce a factual description of Oak Ridge's environment and the issues associated with contamination on the U.S. Department of Energy (DOE) reservation. This consensus effort was a result of common values not generally seen in this spectrum of philosophies, and of shared concerns about rising property taxes, declining city services, fleeing retail establishments, and diminishing real estate values. These problems are attributed to waning local DOE budgets coupled with Oak Ridge's national reputation of being contaminated and unsafe. This undeserved reputation harms the city's ability to attract new industry to replace declining federal employment and to induce families to live in the community. Representatives from a spectrum of conservation, environmental, economic development, local government, and civic organizations were invited to meet regarding how to best explain the complex environmental story of Oak Ridge and the DOE reservation. This large group decided to publish a straightforward explanation of the environmental quality of the city and its relationship to the DOE reservation in easy-to-understand language. The result was Oak Ridge, Tennessee--A Citizen's Guide to the Environment, a 28-page glossy booklet, distributed through the Chamber of Commerce and other organizations. The Oak Ridger ensured wide distribution in the community by publishing it as an insert in the daily paper. The material is also available on several web sites. A trifold brochure summarizing and promoting the larger document was also produced for wider distribution. The integrity of the Citizen's Guide was ensured by having a six-member editorial team manage writing and review of the document. There was no direct involvement by the DOE and its contractor. Knowledgeable citizen writers from throughout the community contributed technical and descriptive text. A professional technical editor melded the disparate styles into a cohesive publication. Volunteers from about 100 organizations reviewed the draft for accuracy of content and readability. Participating organizations, upon review of the final draft, then decided whether their names would be listed in the document as contributors and supporters. While the writing and editing was primarily accomplished by conservation and civic organizations, funding to print the final publications came largely from economic development interests and their supporters. The positive reception from the public upon release of Oak Ridge, Tennessee--A Citizen's Guide to the Environment stands as testament to the ability of diverse interest groups to come to consensus and communicate the environmental value of their community.

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10 pages

Source

  • Waste Management 2003 Symposium, Tucson, AZ (US), 02/23/2003--02/27/2003

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  • Report No.: NONE
  • Grant Number: NONE
  • Office of Scientific & Technical Information Report Number: 827422
  • Archival Resource Key: ark:/67531/metadc780664

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Office of Scientific & Technical Information Technical Reports

Reports, articles and other documents harvested from the Office of Scientific and Technical Information.

Office of Scientific and Technical Information (OSTI) is the Department of Energy (DOE) office that collects, preserves, and disseminates DOE-sponsored research and development (R&D) results that are the outcomes of R&D projects or other funded activities at DOE labs and facilities nationwide and grantees at universities and other institutions.

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Creation Date

  • February 27, 2003

Added to The UNT Digital Library

  • Dec. 3, 2015, 9:30 a.m.

Description Last Updated

  • April 26, 2016, 6:33 p.m.

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Craig, Robert; Freeman, Jenny; Gawarecki, Susan L; Hardy, Parker; Kopp, Steve; Mulvenon, Norman A et al. GAINING CONSENSUS: THE STORY OF ''OAK RIDGE TENNESSEE - A CITIZEN'S GUIDE TO THE ENVIRONMENT'', article, February 27, 2003; Tucson, Arizona. (digital.library.unt.edu/ark:/67531/metadc780664/: accessed April 21, 2018), University of North Texas Libraries, Digital Library, digital.library.unt.edu; crediting UNT Libraries Government Documents Department.