Category Archive: Blog


Root Rot

Stands of Douglas-fir, commonly referred to as “Christmas trees,” across the Pacific Northwest have been fighting off root rotting fungus for millennia; however in recent years, the rot, combined with other tree diseases, has been killing Douglas-fir at an alarmingly increasing rate. Scientists have begun to suspect that climate change’s effect on the area has […]

An Ugly Bill

Senator John Barrasso (R- Wyoming) introduced a bill, the National Forest Jobs and Management Act of 2014, which passed the House 268-154 yesterday, with support from 41 Democrats and all Republicans. The bill is an effort to resuscitate the logging industry in national forests by reducing the price and environmental review associated with it. In […]

Southbound Snowies

I had been reading a lot this winter about the irruption of snowy owls, then, about a month ago, I saw a snowy owl myself right here in downtown Washington, D.C., perched above a parking sign with its beak tucked under its wing. Snowy owls usually stay near the Arctic Circle for breeding, often coming […]

California Wildfires and BLM Budget Cuts

In California, wildfires and forest fires are a yearly occurrence. Already, the warm, dry Santa Ana winds have stirred up fires in both Kimball Island, between Sacramento and San Francisco, and Jurupa Valley in Riverside County. The first fire resulted in no casualties and only one destroyed building, while a second burned down several homes […]

Super Wetlands

Approximately 70 percent of Americans tuned into the Super Bowl yesterday and saw Seattle’s win, according to early estimates. But did you know that Seattle — along with the rest of the world — had another reason to celebrate yesterday? No, I’m not talking about celebrating the six more weeks of winter that Punxatawny Phil […]

Farm Bill Passes House

The Farm Bill, approved on January 29 by the House of Representatives, appeals to both conservationists and timber harvesters. Bill Imbergamo, executive director of the Federal Forest Resource Coalition, a Washington D.C. trade group lobbying for logging companies, states that the bill “is certainly biased towards increased management, rather than restricting it.” (E&ENews) In particular, […]

The Importance of Core Forests

A bill has been introduced in the Pennsylvania House which would make it easier for industries such as gas to drill and develop in forests that could possibly be home to endangered plants or animals or other sensitive species. The ecological significance of “core forests” — forests surrounded by other forests — cannot be overstated. […]

Izembek Revisited: An Alaska Road to Somewhere

Last March, we discussed the burgeoning conflict between Senator Lisa Murkowski (R-AK) and the Department of the Interior over a proposed 20-mile gravel road in the Izembek National Wildlife Refuge. The road would be used to link the local King Cove community to an all-weather airport. Currently, residents must use hovercrafts and boats to access […]

Respect for Elders

Our elders offer a lot to society that younger generations may not as readily provide. They have more years of experience and wisdom to impart and rich histories to share. But our species is not the only one in which older individuals provide benefits that the young can’t always make up for. We already know […]

Thank you, Jim Moran

Representative Jim Moran announced his retirement recently, following more than 20 years of service. As senior Democrat on the Interior Appropriations Committee, Representative Moran did much to protect green infrastructure and urban forestry throughout the nation by ensuring adequate funding for both research and programs supporting such causes. His campaign and office have been vocal […]