FEMA Mitigation Best Practices: Better Unpaved Roads for Nature and People in Arkansas   [open pdf - 79KB]

This document is part of the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) Best Practices Portfolio. "The FEMA Best Practices Portfolio consists of mitigation stories submitted by individuals and communities that describe measures they have taken to reduce the loss of life and property from disasters. These Best Practices are meant to provide ideas and concepts about reducing losses and to encourage others to evaluate their own risk and consider mitigation as a long-term solution to reducing that risk." This Best Practice Story is about transportation mitigation efforts in Arkansas. "A common FEMA project in rural areas is the repair or rebuilding of unpaved roads. In 2013, the Arkansas Association of Counties, the Arkansas Association of Conservation Districts, the Farm Bureau, The Nature Conservancy and a dozen public and private partner organizations joined forces to establish the Arkansas Unpaved Roads Program. Over 85 percent of county roads in Arkansas are unpaved. Eroding unpaved roads can channel rainfall runoff, increasing erosion, and sediment delivery to streams, rivers, and lakes. This sediment can have negative effects for both people and nature. It can fill in gravel stream beds, causing the loss of in-stream habitat for game and non-gamefish and other aquatic species alike, make freshwater sources more expensive to treat for drinking water, and ultimately contribute to loss of lake capacity."

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