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Frame grab from Kathryn Trogdon video: The News&Observer

Raleigh, North Carolina is considering banning the use of drones through pretty nearly all of its public parks. A proposed ordinance would allow drones in just 7 of the city’s 90 parks, and even then with restrictions.

The story comes from the News & Observer, which also reports that drones with cameras would be banned in four of those seven parks. (And, seriously, how many drones don’t have cameras? For nearly all pilots, whether recreational, professional or FPV drone racers, cameras are essential.)

The assistant director for Raleigh’s Parks, Scott Payne, says the proposed restrictions on cameras in some parks is due to concerns over privacy.

“Several of the potential locations within the proposed parks have close proximity to surrounding neighbors,” he told the paper. “The Parks Committee during their deliberation considered privacy concerns for the surrounding neighbors. While one may have a reasonable expectation of being photographed while in a public park, there are concerns with UAV photographing someone on their private property from within the bounds of a public park.”

The news quickly caught the attention of DJI’s vice-president of Policy and Legal Affairs. Brendan Schulman is known on Twitter as @dronelaws:

FAST REACTION

It wasn’t long before NODE – the Network Of Drone Enthusiasts – was on the scene with a new campaign for North Carolina. NODE, if you weren’t aware, is a lobbying group sponsored by DJI that helps pilots to organize and more easily let their voices be heard on regulatory matters.

You can find the beginnings of the NODE North Carolina campaign here:

 

NODE ran a very successful campaign in Canada, helping more than 2000 drone enthusiasts quickly and easily get their perspectives across to those in power. At least partially as a result, Canada recently eased what many believed were unreasonable restrictions contained in an Interim Order.

TDC will keep a close eye on the North Carolina case.

THE VIEW FROM ABOVE

And we end this Buzz with two aerial images both spectacular and concerning. One of the biggest icebergs in history – four times bigger than London and twice the volume of Lake Erie – has calved away from the Larsen C ice shelf in Antarctica. It is estimated to weight 1.2 trillion tons, and scientists believe it broke off within the past couple of days.

We’re not going to get into any of what this means yet, because we simply don’t know and don’t want to trigger any climate change arguments. What we do know is that part of the reason this is getting such attention today is not only due to its size – but also due to two amazing images.

The first is a satellite image, from the European Space Agency:

European Space Agency satellite image of the behemoth iceberg
European Space Agency satellite image of the behemoth iceberg

The second image is is higher resolution, and appears to have been taken from an aircraft – though we don’t know for sure. It’s credited to @bezdiario on Twitter:

Expect to hear more, likely much more, news about this gigantic chunk of ice in coming days.

 

 

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