Cara Giaimo, reporting for NOVA Next:
By turning hundreds of these acres back into prairie, Slaybaugh aims to mitigate the airport’s environmental impact. As part of a recent sustainability initiative, Dayton International Airport compared the potential carbon footprint of different land uses and found that rewilding would put them in the black: for every acre they switched from farmland to prairie grass, they would eliminate about 66 tons of greenhouse gas production. Add that to investments in alternative energy and green building materials, and Slaybaugh hopes the whole property will soon be “more sustainable and more resilient.”
This big new swath of prairie will provide homes for meadowlarks, bob-o-links, and other small songbirds that require at least 100 acres in order to nest successfully. It may also keep away other birds that threaten aircraft safety.