Wildfire season has begun. Some of the areas going up in flames include the increasingly developed zone known as the wildland-urban interface, where fire risks are most apparent to people. One of the steps being taken to help reduce the hazard is fuel reduction work that thins out or removes dense tree stands, making them less prone to wildfire, or at least easier to control when they do burn.
"Vegetation change underway in northern forests as a result of climate change creates feedback loop that prompts more warming, scientists say."
"Woodpeckers are already very busy, digging emerald ash borer larvae out of the city's ash trees and loving it."
Rock keyboardist and tree farmer Chuck Leavell is planting chestnut trees bred to withstand the blight that killed billions of American chestnuts since 1904.
"Conservation groups are concerned that new National Forest Management planning rule announced by the Obama administration last month takes away the single most important measure to ensure wildlife protection afforded by the 1982 regulations they will replace."
"Protests over timber corruption that has made a billionaire of the chief minister of the Malaysian state of Sarawak and enriched his family at the expense of the state's indigenous and other citizens have spilled over to the streets of San Francisco, Seattle, Ottawa and London." Now there are charges of a political murder on US soil.
"The federal rule protecting the nation's last remaining stretches of roadless wilderness will apply now to the largest and grandest of the national forests under a court ruling in Alaska, which threw out the exemption granted to the Tongass National Forest."
"Rising temperatures, drought and the spread of destructive insect pests will shrink the North American range of the lodgepole pine nearly 10 percent by 2020, a new study finds."
"A Canadian company hoping to compete with China's near-monopoly of rare earth elements — metals critical for everything from U.S. military weaponry to wind turbines — wants to open a strip mine inside a national forest in northeast Wyoming."