US Forest Service allows Nestl to continue taking water from California national forest

June 29, 2018 by  
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The U.S. Forest Service has offered Nestlé Waters North America a three-year permit on water rights in the San Bernardino National Forest , allowing the company to continue to take millions of gallons of water from the site. Under the proposed agreement, Nestlé would draw from the Strawberry Creek watershed “when there is water available consistent with the forest’s Land Management Plan” for its various bottled water brands, including Arrowhead. If California returns to severe drought conditions, the Forest Service could further limit natural resource access. The Forest Service says it will work with the Swiss company to study the watershed and determine future management plans. The watershed is currently rated as Class Three “Impaired Function,” the worst watershed functionality class. An “impaired” watershed exceeds “physical, hydrological or biological thresholds,” with major changes needed to restore the watershed to functioning status. Related: The growing wine industry is threatening California’s Napa Valley “[The decision ensures] the water withdrawal and conveyance infrastructure is under a current permit,” U.S. Forest Service District Ranger Joe Rechsteiner explained to the Associated Press. “And it provides for protection of forest resources.” In 2015, the Center for Biological Diversity in Oakland, Calif. sued the Forest Service to block Nestlé from using the watershed, arguing the conglomerate was operating without a valid permit. A federal judge allowed continued water collection for bottling , while regulators considered a new permit. In its permit renewal application, the company cited 70 environmental studies to support its continued watershed usage. Arrowhead’s use of the Strawberry Creek watershed dates back to 1909, when the Arrowhead Springs Company was formed. Nestlé must accept the agreement within 60 days. In a statement to the AP, Nestlé noted they would “carefully review the specifics of the decision.” Via  Associated Press Images via John Heil (1, 2)

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US Forest Service allows Nestl to continue taking water from California national forest

More than 100 million California trees dead due to drought

November 21, 2016 by  
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Drought -stricken California is now facing another dire problem: dying trees . The U.S. Forest Service just reported that 102 million California trees have perished due to the drought, and 62 million trees died just in 2016. Officials fear the dead, dry trees could act as kindling as California battles more extreme fire seasons. The number of dead trees in California has increased by 100 percent from 2015, according to the USFS. Lifeless trees can be found across 7.7 million acres, and millions more trees are weak and expected to fall victim to drought. But it’s not just the drought alone that’s massacring trees; climate change and bark beetles have also played a role. The USFS said higher temperatures and a spike in beetle infestation have killed off trees too. Related: California street trees are worth $1 billion, says USFS and UC Davis United States Secretary of Agriculture Tom Vilsack said in a statement, “These dead and dying trees continue to elevate the risk of wildfire, complicate our efforts to respond safely and effectively to fires when they do occur, and pose a host of threats to life and property across California.” He called for a better budget to not only fight wildfires but also to work towards tree health and restoration. The USFS often has to redirect funds away from restoration work to fight fires, said Vilsack, and without Congress fixing the fire budget, the agency won’t be able to break that devastating cycle. 56 percent of the USFS budget in 2015 went up in flames, consumed by fire management, and the agency expects that by 2025, 67 percent of their funds will go towards fighting fires. California has grappled with drought for five years now, and the USFS reports the state’s wildfire season has only stretched longer and become more severe. Scientists predict in 2017 still more trees will fall victim to harsh, dry conditions in the state. + U.S. Forest Service Images via USFS Region 5 on Flickr ( 1 , 2 )

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More than 100 million California trees dead due to drought

US Forest Service to Demand up to $1,500 for Commercial Photography Permits in Wilderness Areas

September 29, 2014 by  
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The U.S. Forest Service just announced plans to finalize fees for commercial photography and filming in wilderness areas . Under the regulations, which are already in place on a temporary basis, amateur photography is allowable, as is photography in support of “breaking news” – but if you are a monetized blogger, a reporter working on a feature , or are otherwise planning on earning a penny as a result of a photograph or video you take in a designated wilderness area, it will cost up to $1,500 for approval and a permit. Failure to comply could see you slapped with a $1,000 fine. Read the rest of US Forest Service to Demand up to $1,500 for Commercial Photography Permits in Wilderness Areas Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: bloggers , commercialization , fines , First Amendment , journalists , legislation , permits , Photography , us forest service , US Forest Service to charge for photography , wilderness areas

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Japan’s Mount Ontake Eruption: At Least 36 Now Feared Dead

September 29, 2014 by  
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At least 36 people are now feared dead in the aftermath of Saturday’s Mount Ontake volcanic eruption in Japan. Toxic gases are still spewing from the volcano, causing search and rescue efforts to be suspended. Twelve bodies have been reported recovered so far. The volcano erupted, seemingly without warning , shortly before midday local time on Saturday 27 September, 2014. Around 250 people were believed to be hiking on the mountain at the time of the eruption. Read the rest of Japan’s Mount Ontake Eruption: At Least 36 Now Feared Dead Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: 36 people feared dead in Japan eruption , Japan , Japan Volcano , Mount Ontake , Mt Ontake , Mt Ontake eruption , natural disaster , volcanic eruption , volcano

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Wildfire Spending Surpasses $1 Billion During Peak Fire Season

August 26, 2013 by  
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Wildfire spending soared past $1 billion last week as over fifty fires blazed out of control across the Western U.S. When the U.S. Forest Service budget dwindled down to just $50 million during the peak wildfire season, the agency was forced to divert $600 million in funds from timber, recreation, and other areas to fill the gap. As these destructive infernos rapidly increase in recent years, studies show climate change as the main cause behind the flames. Read the rest of Wildfire Spending Surpasses $1 Billion During Peak Fire Season Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Climate Change , climate change wildfires , fire season , forest policy reform , us forest service , wildfire , wildfire budget , wildfire policy        

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Wildfire Spending Surpasses $1 Billion During Peak Fire Season

Trees Are Adapting to Climate Change by Using Water More Efficiently

July 11, 2013 by  
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It’s clear that global warming is going to require some serious adaptation . While some life on this planet digs in its heels , other lifeforms– like trees — are already adapting to climate change. A recent study in the journal Nature shows that trees are responding to higher carbon dioxide levels by using water more efficiently. Although this is good news for some areas, it could possibly mean more drought in areas that rely on water transpired from other areas. Read the rest of Trees Are Adapting to Climate Change by Using Water More Efficiently Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: climate change forests , Climate Change trees , drought and forests , drought and trees , global warming forests , Global Warming trees , harvard university , increase temperatures because of trees , Photosynthesis in global warming , tree research , Trees and Carbon Dioxide , Trees Use Water More Efficiently , us forest service , water exchange in trees        

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Trees Are Adapting to Climate Change by Using Water More Efficiently

Grand Canyon Uranium Mine as Big as a Walmart Parking Lot to Proceed Despite Obama Ban

May 1, 2013 by  
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Photo via Shutterstock A Canadian Company has received federal approval to proceed with a uranium mine despite a ban put in place by President Obama last year. Energy Fuels Resources has skirted the ban by producing a 1986 environmental report conducted by the United States Forest Service, The Guardian reports, but several conservation groups and the Havasupai tribe have dismissed the report as being outdated. The old Canyon mine will clearcut land as large as a Walmart parking lot just six miles from the South Rim entrance to the canyon, which is up to 70 million years old. Read the rest of Grand Canyon Uranium Mine as Big as a Walmart Parking Lot to Proceed Despite Obama Ban Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Energy Fuels Resources , Environment , environmental destruction , grand canyon , Grand Canyon Trust , Havasupai , Nature , News , Red Wall Aquifer , seven natural wonders of the world , South Rim of Grand Canyon , Travel , uranium , us forest service        

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Grand Canyon Uranium Mine as Big as a Walmart Parking Lot to Proceed Despite Obama Ban

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