"SEATTLE — So many pine, fir and spruce trees in the Northwest are riddled with bugs and disease that major tree die-offs are expected to rip through a third of Eastern Washington forests - an area covering nearly 3 million acres - in the next 15 years, according to new state projections."
The agency would add slightly more acreage to the lists of sensitive land and water areas where fire retardant could be dropped only in cases where human life or public safety is threatened. There would be no significant changes in the formula of the retardant, or the general strategy used to determine when and where it's appropriate to drop retardant.
"Whitebark pines may be among the earliest victims of a warming climate in the Northwest, as rising temperatures at higher elevations have brought the trees into contact with the destructive mountain pine beetle."
Wetland acreage in the US declined during 2004-2009, reversing a slightly positive trend of net wetland gains during 1998-2004, according to the latest assessment from the US Fish and Wildlife Service, released Oct. 6, 2011.
"An agricultural leader protesting illegal deforestation was shot to death in northern Brazil, the eighth environmentalist farmer to be killed since May in the Amazon, activists said Tuesday."
"DENVER — A federal appeals court on Friday upheld a law prohibiting roads on nearly 50 million acres of land in national forests across the United States, a ruling hailed by environmentalists as one of the most significant in decades.
The 10th U.S. Circuit Court of Appeals backed the 2001 Roadless Area Conservation Rule after lawyers for the state of Wyoming and the Colorado Mining Association contended it was a violation of the law.
Forests moderate global warming by pulling carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere. But scientists can't predict whether warming will cause major forests to die back, causing a vicious cycle that will make global warming worse.
"An environmental group accused Republican Rep. Steve Pearce of New Mexico of inciting a county in his district to flout federal environmental laws by bulldozing 47 road crossings through a stretch of the San Francisco River in the Gila National Forest."
"A century-old federal program that compensates counties straddling huge tracts of nontaxable national forests has expired, and House Republicans are using its reauthorization to push for opening the land to more logging and mining."