“SKAGIT RIVER, Wash. — There was a time when the murky waters of the Skagit River offered bountiful salmon harvests to the Swinomish Indians of Washington State. They could fill an entire boat with one cast of the net back then, and even on a slow day, they could count on hauling in dozens of fish.
But on a cloudy morning last month, the tribal community chairman, Brian Cladoosby, was having no luck. Drifting in his 21-foot Boston Whaler, he spotted his 84-year-old father, Michael, standing in yellow overalls in another boat, pulling an empty net from the water.
“Where’s the fish, Dad?” the son asked.”
“The proposed new policy — the details of which are still being worked out — is championed by the E.P.A. administrator, Scott Pruitt, who has argued that releasing the raw data would let others test the scientific findings more thoroughly. “Mr. Pruitt believes that Americans deserve transparency,” said Liz Bowman, an E.P.A. spokeswoman.
Critics, though, say that Mr. Pruitt’s goal is not academic rigor, but to undermine much of the science that underpins modern environmental regulations governing clean water and clean air. Restricting the application of established science when crafting new E.P.A. rules could make it easier to weaken or repeal existing health regulations, these people say.
The proposal is “cloaked in all of these buzzwords, in all of the positive things that we want to be for: ‘science,’ ‘transparency,’” said Dr. Ivan Oransky, co-founder of Retraction Watch, an independent blog that monitors scientific journals and exposes errors and misconduct. While Dr. Oransky said he agreed that it was critical to hold the scientific process accountable, he said he believed Mr. Pruitt’s intent was to inject doubt into areas of public health where none exists. “Data he doesn’t like will get disqualified,” Dr. Oransky said.”
“The interior secretary, Ryan Zinke, recently directed the agencies in his department to work with states and private landowners to minimize development and disturbance in migration corridors and winter ranges used by elk, mule deer and pronghorn antelope.Because the Trump administration has otherwise reduced many land and wildlife protections, the move was immediately dismissed by some environmental groups as “greenwashing.” But Mr. Zinke’s order is based on solid ecological science, and it reflects broad support in conservative Western states for protecting a natural wonder important to ecosystems and rural communities.
These animals make long, arduous journeys across the most rugged of Western landscapes. My colleagues and I have tracked herds that travel a hundred miles or more each year, struggling across snowbound mountain ranges and raging rivers. They endure all this because the rewards outweigh the risks: The herds can fatten up on green grass in the high country all summer, then shelter all winter in the valleys and on the plains, away from the deep mountain snow.These migratory herds are the lifeblood of many Western landscapes. They sustain apex predators like wolves, grizzly bears and mountain lions; diverse scavengers like eagles and foxes; and businesses that cater to hunters and wildlife watchers. That’s why protecting the migrations of these big-game animals is becoming a priority for a wide spectrum of Westerners from environmentalists to hunters to ranchers.”
“Here’s a warning to the Senate minority leader, Chuck Schumer, and other environmentally inclined Senate Democrats, like Sheldon Whitehouse and Ed Markey: A legislative minefield lies dead ahead, pocked with destructive amendments of Republican origin hostile to clean air, clean water, endangered species and fragile landscapes. And here’s a plea: Stop these measures from becoming law.Following its approval of the big budget deal on Feb. 9, Congress began writing the dozen appropriations bills that direct federal dollars to specific agencies. These bills are likely to be incorporated in one giant omnibus spending measure to be negotiated over the next few weeks by House and Senate leaders in advance of the March 23 expiration of the continuing budget resolution that has kept the government going.
Given its urgency, the bill is fertile ground for the kind of mischief the Republicans in particular have been notorious for over the years — loading up must-pass bills like this one with provisions, known as riders, that in most cases could not survive on their own and thus need protective cover. In years past, such riders were usually inserted at the last minute on the House or Senate floor. Here they are in plain sight, having been approved in earlier votes or endorsed by powerful committee chairmen or chairwomen who will do their level best to make sure they are included in the final bill. Mr. Schumer can prevent that from happening. The Democrats are effectively 49 in number, the Republicans 51. By holding his party together, he can deny the Republicans the 60 votes they need to overcome a filibuster — ensuring a clean bill, and a cleaner environment.”
NowThis PoliticsJanuary 9 at 12:00pm ·
Trump’s EPA is allowing a nerve gas pesticide to be sprayed on your food.
Rhea Suh of NRDC speaks about the danger of a certain pesticide- Chlorpyrifos.
By HIROKO TABUCHI, NADJA POPOVICH, BLACKI MIGLIOZZI and ANDREW W. LEHREN FEB. 6, 2018
“Anchored in flood-prone areas in every American state are more than 2,500 sites that handle toxic chemicals, a New York Times analysis of federal floodplain and industrial data shows. About 1,400 are located in areas at highest risk of flooding.As flood danger grows — the consequence of a warming climate — the risk is that there will be more toxic spills like the one that struck Baytown, Tex., where Hurricane Harvey swamped a chemicals plant, releasing lye. Or like the ones at a Florida fertilizer plant that leaked phosphoric acid and an Ohio refinery that released benzene.
More Than 2,500 Sites That Handle Toxic ChemicalsAre Located in Flood-Prone Areas Across the Country.
“The Trump administration’s environmental rollbacks have sparked a lot of outrage. But one recent action by the Interior Department drew unprecedented protest from a bipartisan group of top officials who go all the way back to the Nixon administration: a new legal opinion that attempts to legalize the unintentional killing of most migratory birds.Under the new interpretation, the Migratory Bird Treaty Act forbids only intentional killing – such as hunting or killing birds to get their feathers – without a permit. The administration will no longer apply the act to industries that inadvertently kill a lot of birds through oil drilling, wind power and communications towers. Critics fear that these industries might now end the bird-friendly practices that save large numbers of birds.”
Source: Interior cancels decades-old protections for migratory birds — High Country News
“If we are to have restrictions on immigration, they ought to be reasonable, allow for family unification, operate in sync with the labor market and give refuge to those fleeing disaster and persecution. We can enact statutes of limitations on unauthorized presence (say five years, or even 10), which would recognize not just the inevitability of migrants’ entry but also their incorporation into society. The United States itself had such a policy once — before the National Origins Act of 1924.
But today, the mainstream of both political parties clings to the false logic of the 1980s, which yoked legalization to enforcement. This time around the Democrats are in an especially weak position, not least because extremists in both Congress and the White House are holding the Dreamers hostage to a radical nativist agenda.”
“When lighting struck the Pinaleño Mountains in southeast Arizona at around 2:45 p.m. on June 7, igniting a 48,000 acre fire that reduced an ancient forest to blackened poles and stumps, a scurry of rare squirrels — 217 of the 252 left in existence — disappeared.
Some were fitted with radio transmitters that burned to ash; conservationists deduced their fates. They hoped others had managed to escape.But for those 35 survivors — biological remnants from the last ice age — Jeff Humphrey, a spokesman with the United States Fish and Wildlife Service, was deeply concerned.“Most of them have lost the cones they’ve stored for their winter nourishment,” Mr. Humphrey said. “How do we get them through this winter?”
“It may surprise EV newbies to learn that an electric car’s charger is found on board the vehicle. It’s the equipment buried in the guts of the car that takes an AC source of juice from your house, and converts it to DC—so your car’s battery pack can be charged.
This fact doesn’t stop nearly everybody from calling the wall-mounted box that supplies 240 volts of electricity a “charger.” Actually, that box, cord, and plug has a technical name—Electric Vehicle Service Equipment or EVSE—and if you have an EV, you’re going to want to install one at home.
So, it’s slightly misleading to say we’re providing guidance about chargers because we’re really talking about buying an EVSE—which is essentially no more than an electrical device allowing drivers to safely connect an electric car to a 240-volt source of electricity. It’s not rocket science, and you should not overthink the selection and installation of an EVSE.That said, there are important differences between the various home chargers (uh, I mean EVSEs). And there are a few best practices to keep in mind.”
Source: Buying Your First Home EV Charger | PluginCars.com