User: flenvcenter Topic: Biodiversity-National
Category: Specific Organisms :: Plants
Last updated: Jul 30 2015 04:48 IST RSS 2.0
 
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Take a hike to find woodsy flavors for your next batch of beer 30.7.2015 Seattle Times: Politics
Guided walks help brewers discover flavors of the natural Northwest.
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The California Drought Is Making Some Fruit Taste…Better?! 29.7.2015 Mother Jones
On July 20, California's resources board fined a farming district near San Francisco $1.5 million for illegally diverting water to feed its rows of corn, tomatoes, cherries, and almonds. The Golden State, of course, continues to suffer from a dramatic drought, and many farmers face restrictions on pumping and diverting local supplies of water. But national demand for California's fresh fruit and veggies continues at a steady pace. What's a thirsty farmer to do? One simple solution looks a little like Greece's austerity measures: Give each plant less water. A team of USDA scientists is exploring what happens after treating plants to a round of "deficit irrigation," or the reduced application of H2O. But they seem to have stumbled on a rare piece of good drought news: Early findings suggest that after undergoing deficit irrigation for two years, parched plants can produce the same or even higher quality fruit. In a study (PDF) focused on Wonderful variety pomegranate trees, a team of researchers including ...
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It's the International Year of Soils — can we quit treating this resource like dirt? 28.7.2015 MinnPost
CC/Flickr/Natural Resources Conservation Service Soil Health Campaign Soil may be one of the four cornerstones of human life on this planet – with sunlight, water and breathable air — but outside certain specialist communities, it gets substantially less attention. Did you know that 2015 is, by decree of the United Nations General Assembly, the International Year of Soils ? I thought not, but can hardly blame you. Soil may be one of the four cornerstones of human life on this planet – with sunlight, water and breathable air — but outside certain specialist communities, it gets substantially less attention. Underfoot is undervalued, I guess. Also, undercovered. One challenge facing the UN Food and Agriculture Organization is how to draw press attention to the pressures on this critical resource, despite some fairly alarming statistics assembled for the kickoff announcement last December: About one-third of the earth’s soils are being steadily degraded by such largely human-caused factors as erosion, ...
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Santa Barbara to spend $55 million on desalination plant as drought 'last resort' 22.7.2015 LA Times: Commentary
Santa Barbara City Council members on Tuesday unanimously approved spending $55 million to reactivate a mothballed desalination plant that could provide the city with nearly a third of its drinking water.
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Controlled burns and invasive grass 21.7.2015 Environmental News Network
Controlled burning is widely used to maintain biodiversity and enhance regeneration of important deciduous tree species such as oak and hickory, but a recent University of Illinois study found that this practice also increases the growth of an aggressive species of invasive grass.
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Preserved parcels offer glimpse of Minnesota gone by 21.7.2015 Minnesota Public Radio: News
The DNR's scientific and natural areas, like Blanket Flower Prairie, give visitors a glimpse of what Minnesota looked like before European settlement.
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As pollinators decline worldwide, look for a rise in nutritional disease and death in humans 21.7.2015 MinnPost
It’s often noted in discussions of threats to honeybees and other pollinators that perhaps 35 percent of foods in the human diet are directly dependent upon the services of insects, birds and bats that carry pollen from flower to flower. Almost as often, you’ll see some representative examples listed – almonds, peaches, peppers, cucumbers, coffee – along with an invitation to imagine the boring blandness of a diet in which all this bountiful diversity is supplanted with corn, potatoes and wheat. Now a new study published in the noted British medical journal The Lancet probes more deeply into the nutritional and health dimensions of such a dietary shift, and of course the consequences go far beyond matters of appetite and the pleasures of caffeine. Looking at just two nutrients – vitamin A and folate, also known as folic acid and vitamin B9 – the researchers found that: [C]omplete loss of animal pollinators globally would push an additional 71 million people into vitamin A deficiency and 173 million more ...
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The Jewels in Oakland's Crown: In Defense of Eucalyptus Trees 20.7.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
"A thousand leaves on every tree, and each a miracle to me" -- Joaquin Miller Take a hike in the forests of the Oakland hills, and sooner or later, you are likely to bump into a trail marker containing the image of Joaquin Miller, an early settler to the city responsible, in part, for the lush forests which blanket the hills. A colorful figure from the 19th century, famed in his day for his poems celebrating the West's spectacular natural beauty, Miller was called the "Poet of the Sierras" and today has the distinction of having an Oakland street, Oakland elementary school and Oakland park named in his honor. The founder of California's first Arbor Day , Miller planted the land that is now a park bearing his name with 75,000 trees, mostly Eucalyptus, Monterey Pine and Monterey Cypress, three of the very species of trees now slated for eradication across 2,059 acres of public lands in Oakland, Berkeley and surrounding cities . After timber hungry fortune seekers arrived in droves to the San Francisco Bay ...
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Mourning the Changes That Surround Us: Readers Speak Out on Climate 20.7.2015 Truthout - All Articles
Footage from the Carlton Complex wildfire in north and central Washington State. The fire burned for more than 10 days before it could be quelled by firefighters and rain. (Photo: Wildfire via Shutterstock) While no single abnormal weather event can be attributed solely to human-caused climate change, the frequency and intensity of most events can. We asked Truthout readers to share their observations of weather anomalies they are witnessing, and their answers reflect the on-the-ground realities of a rapidly changing planet. Footage from the Carlton Complex wildfire in north and central Washington State. The fire burned for more than 10 days before it could be quelled by firefighters and rain. (Photo: Wildfire via Shutterstock) In early July, I asked Truthout readers to share the weather anomalies they are witnessing on their home turf. Large numbers of readers responded with a range of harrowing observations, from vanishing snow, to shifts in seasons, to skyrocketing temperatures, to wildfires and ...
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In St. Paul, empty Frogtown lot becomes monarch haven 19.7.2015 Pioneer Press: Most Viewed

When Paul Nelson and Patricia Ohmans looked at 718 LaFond Avenue, they didn't see yet another vacant lot in St. Paul's Frogtown neighborhood. They saw a chance to beautify the area and help monarch butterflies, a species whose decline has concerned scientists, nature lovers and lawmakers.

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Brightwater: A Model of 21st Century Infrastructure 16.7.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Brightwater / Jared Green Imagine a wastewater treatment facility where people get married, amid 40-acres of restored salmon habitat with designed ponds and wetlands. It sounds far-fetched but it's reality in Snohomish County, Washington, near the border with King County, about an hour northeast from downtown Seattle. In a tour of the Brightwater facility during the American Planning Association (APA) conference by Michael Popiwny, the landscape architect who managed this $1 billion project for the King County government, we learn how wastewater treatment plants can become assets instead of drains on communities and the environment. The key to success was an interdisciplinary management, design, and construction team that was highly responsive to community feedback and deeply sensitive to environmental concerns. Plus, Brightwater was paid for by growth in the region. As new people are attracted to the quality of life the Seattle area offers, they move in and pay a $4,000 - $8,000 sewer hook-up fee. "The ...
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As species adapt to a warming climate, ecosystems change 15.7.2015 Environmental News Network
If it seems like you're pulling more bass than trout out of Ontario's lakes this summer, you probably are.Blame it on the ripple effect of climate change and warming temperatures. Birds migrate earlier, flowers bloom faster, and fish move to newly warmed waters putting local species at risk.To mitigate the trend and support conservation efforts, scientists at the University of Toronto (U of T) are sharing a way to predict which plants or animals may be vulnerable to the arrival of a new species.
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Forest Landscape Restoration Is More than Planting Trees: 3 Case Studies from the Western US 9.7.2015 WRI Stories
This post was co-written with Aaron Reuben, a communications officer at IUCN. It originally appeared on IUCN’s blog. A chainsaw breaks the peace of a quiet forest in central Oregon. Soon, the crash of a tree follows and the rustle of debris dragged and piled. When the weather cools the next sound will be a crackling one, as great heaps of wood are lit and fires rage. What we are witness to is a classic scene of deforestation, right? The clearing of virgin woods to make way for cattle, crops... [[ This is a content summary only. Visit my website for full links, other content, and more! ...
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This Is How A Species Goes Extinct: More Than A Ton Of Frozen Pangolin Meat Seized In Indonesia 9.7.2015 Green on HuffingtonPost.com
Pangolins are one of the most trafficked animals in the world. Pangolins are one of the planet's most unique and adorable species. The scaly, anteater-like creatures live in parts of Asia and Africa, and there's an entire task force dedicated to their protection. A popular Pokemon character, Sandslash , was even based on these " artichokes on legs ." And yet, humans can't seem to stop killing them. Authorities in Indonesia recently busted smugglers trying to transport 1.3 tons worth of dead pangolins into Singapore. Heart-wrenching photos taken by a Getty photographer show dozens of the animals frozen in their trademark armored ball before they were burned by customs officials on Wednesday. Warning: The pictures below may be upsetting to some readers. Pangolins are the world's " most-trafficked " mammal. The International Union for Conservation of Nature classifies the Chinese pangolin -- one of eight species of pangolins -- as " critically endangered ." But despite this designation, consumers in parts ...
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Cushion plants harbour tiny mountain worlds inside 8.7.2015 New Scientist: Being Human
Turtle-shaped cushion plants dominate the otherwise barren rocks high up in the mountains, and within each one is a unique and diverse ...
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A scientist discovered a new insect species living in New Jersey. He’s already worried about its survival. 7.7.2015 Washington Post
A grass-eating species of insect that makes its home in the Pine Barrens of New Jersey - just south of New York City - has until recently escaped the notice of humans. But now, the leafhopper has a scientific name  -  Flexamia whitcombi - and at least one scientist worried that it might not be around for very much longer. Read full article ...
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Calif. water rates rise 6.7.2015 Durango Herald
ROSEVILLE, Calif. – Saving water doesn’t always mean saving money in parched California.Millions of Californians expecting relief on their water bills for taking conservation measures instead are finding higher rates and drought surcharges.Water departments are increasing rates and adding fees because...
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California water rates rise as cities lose money in drought 6.7.2015 Seattle Times: Nation & World
ROSEVILLE, Calif. (AP) — Saving water doesn’t always mean saving money in parched California. Millions of Californians expecting relief on their water bills for taking conservation measures instead are finding higher rates and drought surcharges. Water departments are increasing rates and adding fees because they’re losing money as their customers conserve. They say they still […]
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Native-species habitat bill passes the Assembly 29.6.2015 Philly.com News
TRENTON A measure that would encourage homeowners to create way stations for birds, monarch butterflies, and other wildlife has unanimously passed the New Jersey General Assembly and is awaiting action in the Senate.
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Stupidity and Intelligence: Science, GMOs and Our Food 29.6.2015 Commondreams.org Views
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