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Please begin with an informative title:

Before presenting this week's collection of more than 60 environmentally related diaries, a word about a story that's been haunting me for the past month.

If you haven't read about the terrible situation for elephants in Central Africa yet, I urge you to do so. It's not a new story, but it's gotten little more than the once-over in the traditional media. It was reported in February that a study by the Gabonese National Parks Agency, World Wildlife Federation and the Wildlife Conservation Society found that poachers had killed an estimated 11,100 elephants in Minkébé’s National Park of Gabon since 2004. Half to three-fourths of the single largest forest elephant population in the world gone in a flash.

The overall situation is even worse:

To discern these unfortunate findings, a massive, international team of researchers spent 91,600 person-hours surveying 13,000 kilometers of land in Cameroon, Gabon, The Democratic Republic of the Congo, Congo, and the Central African Republic. Using dung as an indirect indicator of the elephants, the researchers estimated that around 100,000 individuals currently survive, down from a population of 700,000 several decades ago.
I find the details of the elephant slaughter difficult to look at. It's all about the ivory, of course. Poachers kill the animals and then, often with chainsaws, cut off the tusks to begin their trek into the international black market. Were it not for the desires of people able to pay for the object of these slaughters, elephants would not be at risk. Nobody would be making money off butchered elephants, their bodies left to rot, if possessing ivory were not so important to the these conscienceless self-indulgent people.

Just how desperate those who care about what is happening to elephants as a result of the ivory trade can be found in Ross Pomeroy's comment about there being a silver lining in the fact that 80 percent of the forest elephant population has been lost since 1988:

This qualifies the pachyderms for an uplisting on the International Union for the Conservation of Nature's Red List, from "vulnerable" to "critically endangered." With any luck, such a move may elicit meaningful action on behalf of the elephants.
I wish I weren't so skeptical about that possibility.

•••  •••  •••

Before going to this week's Green Diary Rescue, let me issue my standard disclaimer: Inclusion of a particular diary does not indicate my agreement or endorsement of it.

You can find the rescued diaries below the fold.


You must enter an Intro for your Diary Entry between 300 and 1150 characters long (that's approximately 50-175 words without any html or formatting markup).

Food & Agriculture & Gardening

Meat industry now consumes four-fifth of all antibiotics—by beach babe in fl: "The FDA has instituted a voluntary approach to regulation of antibiotics in animal feed as they don't have the resources to monitor properly. How's that working out? Well, we should know by now you don't mess with the free market and profit. The meat industry is feasting on antibiotics and sending out product tainted with antibiotic-resistant bugs. Meat production is killing us in many ways..pick your poison."
                                                H/T Joe Shikspack flr

Macca's Meatless Monday...selling pot pies from a tray—by beach babe in fl: As part of her ongoing campaign encouraging people to eat less meat for the sake of the planet's health, the diarist provides us with a recipe for vegan pot pie.

Saturday Morning Garden Blogging Vol. 9.4—by Merry Light: "I would love to start getting all the gardens ready for summer, but I'll stick to indoor seed starting and maybe planting some lettuce in some pots on the deck. I think I'd better not get too excited too early, although it is really tough to give it a little time.  One thing I wll do is plant sweet peas tomorrow, a tradition in my family on St. Patty's day. Oh, and eat corned beef! (Mr. Light is Irish on both sides of his family, and we love our corned beef!"


Sunday-Streets-embarcadero_04HOLY SPOKES!!!!! London commits £1 BILLION to new bicycle infrastructure, nobody notices.—by citisven: "From the Department of Putting Your Money Where Your Mouth Is, last week the city of London announced one of the largest cycling transportation development budgets in the history of the bicycle, qualifying it as one of the world’s largest public works projects. [...] It's pretty simple: If you have a comprehensive network of separated bike lanes, people will use them and turn drivers into cyclists."

Sustainable Transportation: Working on an EcoCAR2 Team—by Abraham Running For Congress When I Turn 25: "So I am a member of one of the 15 teams competing in the EcoCAR2 competition and I wanted to introduce you guys to some of the things we are working on and maybe get your help. I am part of the California State University team in Los Angeles. We are working to build a Plug in hybrid vehicle for the competition but the competition also encompasses Outreach activities to teach people about the technology and sustainability and how it can help reduce the use of fossil fuels."

In an America 'can do' speech, Obama introduces Energy Security Trust for transportation innovations—by Meteor Blades: "But the president's speech came on the same day that media sources say the White House may rewrite its proposal to regulate greenhouse gases, which, if true, means yet another delay on that score. The juxtaposition with the Energy Security Trust whipsaws eco-advocates once again with the two-steps forward, one-step backward approach the administration has engaged in with its energy and climate change policies."

Climate Change

Admiral calls Climate Change top security issue —by A Siegel: "Admiral Locklear as a strong voice on climate change issues might surprise some. Consider, for example, the range of Combatant Commander formal statements to Congress as to the discussion of climate change. Writ large, not much there — and Admiral Locklear is no exception in that list. Admiral Locklear has mentioned climate change before, such as commenting that it would be a stress factor in Europe (where he commanded Operation Odyssey Dawn, the attack on Qaddafi's Libya during the Arab Spring). That Admiral Locklear is putting climate change on the top of the long-term security challenge seems to be new — to be news."

Test driving Reality Drop, the Climate Reality Project's siege engine—by DWG: "The group has rolled out a news aggregator and rapid response engine known as Reality Drop. Think of it as a far more technologically advanced antidote to sites like Watts Up With That and Climate Depot. Reality Drops is addictive. I found myself checking out the stories for ones I had not seen. The points and badges mojo scheme adds another layer of interest. This has the potential to be the equivalent of Farmville for climate activists. What it lacks in goofy graphics it makes up for with warm fuzzies for fighting the good fight."

The climate itself is migrating—by Laurence Lewis: "For over a decade, we have known that climate change is driving epidemic diseases such as dengue fever into new territories. Of course, animals also are following the climate, and a 2011 study estimated that species are moving to higher elevations at a median rate of 11 meters per decade, and to higher latitudes at a median rate of 16.9 kilometers per decade."

Economic impacts of climate change adding up in Florida—by DWG: "Officials in the Miami-Dade area have been engaged in intense discussions over how to update an aging sewer system that backs up water in residential areas with routine storms (let's call them storms-of-the-month during the rainy season). After 10 months of negotiation, they opted for spending $1.5 billion on upgrades. [...] The upgrades do not include recommendations to make the facilities "climate ready" for changes likely during their 50-year life expectancy."

Spoiled Earth: Slouching Toward Climate Catastrophe—by Virally Suppressed: "As a thought experiment, let's just take one nation—America—and one contributor to greenhouse gas emissions—cars—and try to brainstorm how we could substantively reduce the warming of the planet by reducing or eliminating its production of carbon dioxide in, say, 25 years."

Our Understated Climate Problem—by wcalvin: "Thus the typical climate forecast ought to be firmly labeled “At least this bad but probably worse.” And probably sooner, too. We must bear in mind that the extreme weather episodes that are forecast for 2028 could happen this year instead."

Space Rocks move Congress, Climate Change impacts not so much—by Jamess: "Maybe if Climate Change effects arrived in the form of an asteroid swarm attack, maybe then — they'd get off their legislative ass?  (as the Speaker puts it.) Maybe if Climate Change effects led to Billions and Billions in potentially untapped income — like those space rocks — maybe some K-Street Lobbyist firm would be hired, to kiss it. ... The GOP's continuing charade at leadership."

The Six Degrees of Climate Change Concern —by jamess: Yale University and George Mason University collaborate on a climate change project that surveyed 1,000 Americans about climate change. They ranged from alarmed to the dismissive.

The Great Outdoors

white day, lighthouse—by blueyedace2: A photo diary.

The Daily Bucket: first spring pollen—by OceanDiver: "It's spring! The sun peeks out, birds are singing...and, sigh...my head is a bit plugged up today. Windblown pollen is everywhere in this light dry breeze. Even if my own immune system is overreacting when I breathe it in (and more so every year it seems) I can't help but respect the scale of reproductive hopefulness all this pollen represents."

Wild Notebook: rumors of winter's demise a photo diary—by Polly Syllabic. ""

The Daily Bucket - wetland birds—by bwren: ""
—by : "Quick stop at the wetland this drizzly afternoon. The alder grove overlooking the pond was swarming with birdsong: Red-winged Blackbirds, Siskins, Goldfinches. Too many to count even with binoculars."

The Daily Bucket: Rufous returns—by OceanDiver: "I've been getting a little more diligent about phenology this year. I used to record the return of the hummingbirds, and then stopped, for no good reason except laziness I guess. I have dredged up the years I did record their arrival, although I can't be absolutely certain these weren't Annas visiting from some other neighborhood, since I didn't know Annas stay over the winter until last year. I wasn't looking closely at their colors. However, from what birders and naturalists in the county have reported, while Annas have been seen in isolated spots since the early 1990s, it's only since around 2005 they have spread county-wide."

A downed tree gives life to another.
The Daily Bucket: What's Wrong With That Tree?—by PHScott: "I can't walk by a deformed tree trunk without stopping to ponder - what happened to that tree? Was it injured? How long ago? Natural or man-made? Was it insects, a treefall, and how long did it take to heal over? Was it some farmer with barbed wire and too lazy or too poor to get a fence post? Some kid with a knife and idle moments?"

The Daily Bucket - Poisonous Newt—by Milli Watt: "This critter was found crossing a popular horseriding/biking/dogwalking trail on March 7th. In trying to ID it from its photo, we determined that it is a Rough-skinned newt and it is extremely toxic.  It contains tetrodotoxin - the same poison as the Blue-ringed octopus of Australia and the Pufferfish. One rough-skinned newt divided up and eaten can kill 17 people. I can't imagine deliberately eating one, but it's important to wash hands if you touch one so you don't get the toxin into your mouth by accident and to keep inquisitive dogs away."

Rough-skinned newt
Rough-skinned newt
DKos Special Supplement: Hiking the Waterpocket Fold and 'The Wave'—by richholtzin: "Before you get started on these hiking adventures a word to the wise: hiking in desert-canyon terrain can sometimes be a challenge to mind, body and spirits. When hiking in tepid to simmering weather, the challenge is heightened, mainly because water, the elixir you always want to have with you, and eating munchies between sips can sometimes mean the difference between coherency and confusion."

DKos Tour Series: Nine Mile Canyon (needs our help!)—by richholtzin: "Nine Mile Canyon is a veritable outdoor museum replete with rock art. Managed by the BLM Price and Vernal Field Offices, its numerous panels of exquisite petroglyphs are of such remarkable quality that some have been featured in National Geographic, among other publications highlighting such uniqueness. The locale is well off the beaten track. This statement especially infers there are no services available of any kind along its route. Driving through Nine Mile Canyon is like passing through a corridor of time estimated to go back some eight thousand years. The main presentation of rock art follows a sinuous road for some 40 miles. The Fremont and Ute people are the main artisans who made these images. Their dwellings and granaries also abound. The drawings on the panels are engaging to ponder. The meaning of the representational meaning behind the images is the main curiosity for most people. The styles of these images run the gambit from naturalistic to cryptic."

Nine Mile Canyon petroglyphs

ALEC & Koch front groups swarm Kansas legislators to kill wind incentives—by cgibosn: "States around the country, including Texas, Ohio, Missouri and North Carolina are poised to cut back on government support for clean energy jobs using model legislation from the American Legislative Exchange Council. ALEC, which brings companies together with state lawmakers to forge a wish list of corporate state laws behind closed doors, is coordinating this year's assault on state laws that require a gradual increase of electricity generated by clean energy sources."

Thinking big on clean energy: What is possible in New York state—by DWG: "A team of researchers lead by Mark Jacobson of Stanford University examined the feasibility of replacing all fossil energy in the state of New York with wind, water, and sun by 2030. In other words, is it possible to achieve a 100% renewable energy portfolio in less that 20 years using existing technology? The answer is yes."

Tom Farrell's nuclear fantasy—by Ivy Main: "But Farrell is convinced wind and solar can’t provide reliable electricity to power the whole grid. You’d think he’d been reading propaganda from the Koch Brothers and had come to believe that if there are solar panels somewhere and a cloud crosses the sun, the whole grid crashes."

Fukushima: 2 Years After—by Joieau: "[The tsunami and meltdown anniversary sparked] protests across the world, for those who may be laboring under the misapprehension that the disaster has magically stopped being a disaster at some point in the past two years, or that the disaster is well on its way to being "cleaned up" at this point in time. Fukushima Daiichi in no danger of that, as TEPCO officials just this past week reported that they're running out of places to store grossly contaminated water leaking from the destroyed plants, and is seeking permission to release stored water into the ocean."

Two Studies Contradict WHO Reassurances about Fukushima—by Eternal Hope: "On February 28th, 2013 the Associated Press reported a story from the World Health Organization saying that there was only a slight risk of cancer from the Fukushima disaster. The World Health Organization published a study showing that there was only "one extra percentage point" added to a Japanese infant's lifetime cancer risk."

Off Grid: Utilities? We don't need no stinkin' utilities.—by Muskegon Critic: "Is it possible that are at a crossroads where the technology is finally there to allow us to go fully or partially offgrid without significantly reducing our standard of living --lights, refrigerators, washing machines, computers -- and within a reasonable pay-back time? Holy crap, dude...2 to 7 watts for a lightbulb? That's just nuts."

Coal Killed 100,000 in India in 2012—by Jguay: "A groundbreaking new report has, for the first time, estimated the human toll from India’s dirtiest fuel source. According to the study 80-115,000 people died prematurely as a result of emissions from coal-fired power plants in 2012. Those deaths, along with a slew of other health impacts, including millions of cases of asthma, respiratory distress and heart disease caused by coal emissions, cost the Indian government $3.3 to $4.6 billion."

Structure of a methane hydrate block embedded in the sediment off the Oregon coast.
Fabulous news: Japan a bit closer to exploiting a way to heat the planet yet more: methane hydrates—by Meteor Blades: "But if the hydrates become economically accessible, the question becomes whether use of the natural gas separated from them will be a bridge or a twelve-lane highway stretching far into the future. Using fuels that produce fewer greenhouse gas emissions is a good thing. But the overburdened atmosphere needs more than a mere reduction."

Still clueless about energy policy—by teddywolf: "Friedman hopes that a carbon tax will change people's energy behaviors and consumption.  However, if the point of it all is energy efficiency, renewable energy and a cleaner environment, that's nowhere near enough."

Interior Secretary admits Shell "screwed up" in the Arctic Sea—by DWG: "One has to wonder why Shell was allowed to proceed with drilling in 2012 if these fail-safe systems were not already in place. Salazar's comments suggest that Shell had a plan but its wild and crazy contractors did not follow it. Theoretically, BP had a plan to cap a well leak in 5000 feet of warm water, but I digress. The story goes on to say that the only thing Shell did right was forecast dangerous ice floe development. Shell (or their contractors) did nearly everything else wrong. Fascinating."

Wind power is kicking nuclear's ass; meanwhile solar is hitting it out of the ballpark—by beach babe in fl: "In 2012, wind power began the fastest growing segment of new electricity generation in the U.S., providing 42 percent of new generation capacity, according to the American Wind Energy Association."


Florida Legislature Pushing ALEC, CSG Sham Fracking Chemical Disclosure Model Bill—by Steve Horn: "Florida may soon become the fourth state with a law on the books enforcing hydraulic fracturing ("fracking") chemical disclosure. The Florida House of Representatives' Agriculture and Natural Resources Subcommittee voted unanimously (11-0) on March 7 to require chemical disclosure from the fracking industry. For many, that is cause for celebration and applause. [...] What [bill sponsor Ray] Rodrigues didn't mention: the law was written by what investigative journalist Steve Coll referred to as a "private empire," ExxonMobil."

“Frackademia” Strikes Again at USC with “Powering California” Study Release—by Steve Horn: "“Frackademia” – shorthand for bogus science, economics and other research results paid for by the oil and gas industry and often conducted by “frackademics” with direct ties to the oil and gas industry – has struck again in California.It comes in the form of a major University of Southern California (USC) report on the potential economic impacts of a hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) boom in California’sMonterey Shale basin that’s hot off the presses, “Powering California: The Monterey Shale and California’s Economic Future.”"

California Democrats, More Liberal Than Their Leaders. Case Study: Fracking.—by RLMiller: "This year, the legislature is considering seven to ten bills to regulate fracking in various fashions - well construction standards, wastewater disposal rules, disclosure of toxic chemicals, and the like. But no amount of well casing regulation will prevent carbon pollution caused by fracking and burning 15 billion barrels of sour crude oil. No research can prove the safety of injecting wastewater underground into a previously unmapped fault. A moratorium is needed. So what's a Democratic activist to do?"

What's That Smell?—by Michael Brune: "In fact, a ProPublica investigation has identified more than 1,000 cases of water contamination near drilling sites. The risks don't end when the drilling does, either. The question isn't whether abandoned wells and fracking-waste storage sites can leak, but how many will fail, and how soon it will happen. Yet, incredibly, fracking enjoys exemptions from parts of at least seven major national environmental statutes, including the Clean Air Act, the Clean Water Act, and the Safe Drinking Water Act. The rush to frack for natural gas has occurred with maximum greed and minimum oversight."

Keystone & Other Fossil Fuel Transport

New York Times: Obama, Say No to the XL Pipeline—by beach babe in fl: " In a Sunday editorial "When To Say No" the Times states that: "A president who has repeatedly identified climate change as one of humanity’s most pressing dangers cannot in good conscience approve a project that — even by the State Department’s most cautious calculations — can only add to the problem."

Come Protest The Keystone Pipeline Wednesday Evening in Washington, DC—by byKay Observer2: "The President is speaking to a group of his top political donors in DC at the St. Regis Hotel tomorrow evening, and we want to get a big crowd there to let him know that if he's serious about stopping climate change, he needs to stop the pipeline."

Memo to President Obama re: Keystone XL—by Blunder Dog is a public comment submitted in conjunction the CREDO Action campaign to provide 200,000 comments on the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement on the pipeline: "The Keystone XL Pipeline will unequivocally communicate to the world that global warming is not a serious concern of the United States; that wealthy corporations are entitled to their whims and desires while the 'regular folk' deserve nothing; that the path to the future is a retreat to the past where the dirty, provably harmful technology from 125 years ago is the best we can do."

Keystone Pipeline Environmental Assessors Have Controversial Past—by KGrandia: "The climate change site, DeSmogBlog has found that Environmental Resources Management, the consulting firm behind the Keystone XL Pipeline environmental impact assessment, has been at the center of controversial pipeline projects in the past.

Keystone XL: Will the State Department's shameful dishonesty become Obama's climate legacy?
—by Laurence Lewis: "If it seemed that the State Department's Keystone SEIS was such a deliberate whitewash to green light the pipeline that it could have been written by industry insiders, that's only because it actually was. [...] What could possibly be wrong with the oil industry writing the Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement of an oil industry project?"

Keystone XL Pipeline Will Be Approved–Demand Job & Green Stimulus In Exchange—by ProgressiveLiberal: "If the President ultimately supports the pipeline, a gift to corporate America,  middle class America must get something major in return. After all, even as the middle class wages and jobs are stagnant, Wall Street is at record levels, and corporate profits are at record levels. Force Republicans to pass the various job programs (stimuli) already proposed for infrastructure spending, investments in education, and alternative energy."

Fareed Zakaria Keystone cop—by JML9999: "I have little tolerance for Fareed Zakaria and his pseudo-academics, but the lies on the Keystone were coming Fast and Furious today."

Thomas Friedman calls for noise on Keystone XL—by DWG: "Friedman suggests two major items that should be part of some grand bargain to approve the pipeline to pump up profits for the oil industry. The first is a carbon tax, something NASA's Dr. James Hansen has been advocating for years. Without pricing carbon, there is no way to speed the transition to low carbon energy sources. The second major proposal is to treat nature and communities as infrastructure. Nature supplies cost-effective carbon sinks, barriers to rising seas, and drinking water stocks. Investment in communities can make them more resistant to climate effects and more resilient. Infrastructure investments could generate a great deal of job growth and protect vital natural resources. All are good ideas that Republicans will reject out of hand."

Activists working against the 2002 planned construction of British Petroleum's Baku-Tbilisi-Ceyhan pipeline in Turkey, singled out Environmental Resources Management (ERM) for what they saw as ERM "grooming" the BP pipeline for construction. Like the Keystone XL pipeline assessment, ERM's assessment of the Turkish pipeline was seen as flawed and drafted in a way that gave all but the green light for the pipeline to be constructed."

Tar Sands Pipeline Bigger than Keystone XL & Headed for the Great Lakes—by LakeSuperior: "The proposed Presidential Permit would authorize modifications to the facility allowing an eventual transport rate of 880,000 barrels per day — larger than the 830,000 barrels per day for the Keystone XL Pipeline."

Shut down the Enbridge pipelines running under Red Lake ceded lands!—by ImpeccableLiberalCredentials: "These four pipelines need to be shutdown until the encampment ends and some deal has been reached between Enbridge and the tribe, or until the pipelines are rerouted through lands where they have easements and rights-of-way with the landowners on the new route."


Latest Bay Delta Conservation Plan Proposal Is Still “Fatally Flawed”—by Dan Bacher: "The Brown administration on March 14 released the first four of 12 chapters of the controversial Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) to build the peripheral tunnels, drawing strong criticism from Delta advocates that the plan is 'fatally flawed.'"

Peripheral tunnel water will go to agribusiness and oil companies—by Dan Bacher: "Missed in the mainstream media coverage of the release of the revised Bay Delta Conservation Plan (BDCP) documents on March 14 was the alarming role the peripheral tunnels could play in increased fracking in California"

Fish & Wildlife

Idaho’s Big Salmon and Steelheads Need Little Fish to Eat—by The Book Bear: "Forage fish are a huge part of the food web out in the ocean. If there are not enough of them, the predator fish further up the food chain, like Salmon and Steelhead, dwindle in numbers. Unfortunately, the global demand for forage fish is growing and these important little ones are being scooped up at an alarming rate. They are being ground into food, poultry and fish farms.

There's something you can do about it today,according to the Idaho Conservation League. If you want these fish to experience a natural food chain instead of being fed to chickens and pigs, there is a chance to  make your voice heard."

Executive Order to Ban Horse Slaughter in New Mexico!—by meepdog: "Governor Martinez is SAYIN' she is opposed to horse slaughter, but is acting powerless. However, Attorney at Law Pia Gallegos states, 'There exists sufficient potentiality for public harm so as to justify an Executive Order by Governor Martinez banning horse slaughter in the State of New Mexico.' (NMSA 12-10A-5) Sign the Petition — YES SHE CAN! "

Dawn Chorus: Bulls Island, South Carolina—by angelajean: "Bulls Island is large for a barrier island. We actually didn't get to see everything. I don't think it's possible in a single trip. In fact, we met a father and son that were on their eighth trip. The first was a school trip with the son's junior high class and since then, they've made it back at least once a year. They swore that with every visit they see something brand new. It doesn't surprise me. This place is a mecca for wildlife."

The Daily Bucket - owl nesting season—by bwren: "Over the past two weeks the regular walkers have heard owls calling from a hidden place just west of here. We're hoping that this pair has found a more stable piece of real estate. The northern pair seems to have chosen more wisely, though we do worry about them. Up until last year we could count on finding them every year in a mature yet thriving Douglas Fir. This tree, however, stands very close to an ancient Douglas Fir that has hosted a Bald Eagle nest for close to 30 years now. We've watched the owl branchlings tottering through the canopy of that elder tree, oblivious to the nest of hungry eagle babies and experienced eagle parents only 20 or 30 feet above them. So far no owlets have ended up as eaglet meals."

Eco-Philosophy, Eco-Activism and Sustainability

Affordable, Sustainable Housing I: As Direct Action—by Words in Action: "'SUSTAINABLE' HOUSING -- housing that is constructed, maintainable and powered in a sustainable manner -- is a major weapon for the Climate War. Lack of sustainable housing, by definition, forces us to use fossil fuel energy sources, to be unwilling contributors to Climate Change. Lack of AFFORDABLE, SUSTAINABLE HOUSING is in no small part a product of the Class and Climate Wars, one which substantially diminishes our ability to pull the reins in on Consumer Culture, another powerful force behind Climate Change."

Affordable, Sustainable Housing II: Materials & Methods—by Words in Action.

Affordable, Sustainable Housing III: In Communities—by Words in Action.

Forests & Public Lands & DC Politics

Sequester will freeze hiring and cut services at national parks across the country—by Laura Clawson: "Sequestration is hitting national parks across the country, forcing services and hours to be cut and jobs to go unfilled. Which means Wyoming Rep. Cynthia Lummis, who's upset about cuts at Yellowstone National Park, isn't the only Republican sequester-lover who's going to be feeling its effects hit home in her district."

Sally Jewell: From REI to DOI?—by Michael Brune: "From everything I've seen, Sally Jewell has the potential to be a great Secretary of the Interior. Based on the Obama's administration's track record of protecting public lands thus far, though, I have to hope this expert kayaker doesn't find herself paddling into the wind. Unfortunately, this administration has been too slow to act on making sure that frackers, drillers, and miners don't ruin our public lands."

Expect dirty bathrooms and long lines at the Grand Canyon, thanks to sequester—by Laura Clawson: "Planning a trip to the Grand Canyon this summer? Thanks to Republicans insisting on sequestration in order to protect corporate tax loopholes, you can expect: ... a two-hour reduction in summer hours at the park’s main visitor center, longer processing times for back-country permits and extended lines to enter the park, which has an average 4.38 million visitors a year. Grand Canyon’s restrooms and campgrounds will be cleaned less often, and repairs to damaged trails will take longer, Uberuaga said in a phone interview."

National Parks, Oh National Parks—by webranding: "Almost every year I camp for weeks a year. Two years ago I went with a friend from college, a guy I've known for 20+ years. He brought a friend that was to like the right of Rand Paul. This is how that worked out."

Glacier National Park Concessions—by Ojibwa: "One of the companies looking at bidding on the concession for Glacier National Park is Xanterra, which currently holds the concession for Yellowstone National Park. Xanterra is owned by Philip Frederick Anshutz who made his fortunes in oil, railroads, telecom, and entertainment. Anshutz purchased Xanterra in 2008."

Daily Kos partners with Environmental Action to fight Oil Subsidies—by Environmental Action: [By getting 100,000 citizen comments] "USAction, Environmental Action and Daily Kos combined their forces to refocus the budget debate on government waste like oil subsidies that represent poor policy, poor economics, and poor morals. The oil industry is taxed at a much lower rate, 9%, than almost any industry, and is a leading cause of  global warming. Investment in green jobs would provide far more bang for taxpayers' bucks."

Pollution & Hazardous Wastes

The battle against 'Mine Games' continues—by James Richard Bailey:  On Friday, March 8, 2013, the corrupt, crooked Republicans in the Wisconsin legislature passed the mining deregulation bill written at the behest of coal mining magnate Chris Cline. By a 58 to 39 party line vote in the Wisconsin Assembly, the giveaway of our resources to that greedy bastard from West Virginia was a done deal."

Gulf Watchers Tuesday - No regulator testimony against BP at trial - BP Catastrophe AUV #609—by peraspera: "The investigative reports about the Deepwater Horizon/Macondo horror show have listed staggering numbers of incidents where basic drilling safety was ignored. One would expect that the regulatory agency in charge of deepwater drilling would have truckloads of paperwork documenting such egregious behavior backed up with regulatory witnesses to testify as to how horrific BP's safety record was. But, no. Not a single regulator has testified against BP in the trial."

New photo evidence that Gulf is drenched in oil, as BP trial drags on—by Stuart H Smith: "Environmentalist and pilot Bonny Schumaker, of On Wings Of Care, took to the skies over the Gulf yet again this weekend and produces sad and stunning photo documentation of a natural treasure that remains under assault from crude oil pollution, both at and near the Deepwater Horizon site, near another industrial oil spill, as well as unexplained seepage of fresh crude. The ongoing damage to this vital natural resource continues to threaten not only low-lying wetlands but key wildlife sanctuaries and marine habitats."

Mountaintop Removal Coal Mining Poisons Appalachia's Waterways—by Mary Anne Hitt: "Mountaintop-removal coal mining allows toxic heavy metals such as cadmium, selenium, and arsenic to leach into Appalachian's local water supplies. Research shows that "residents in mining areas - especially mountaintop removal mining areas - have higher incidents of cancer, heart disease, kidney disease, birth defects, premature mortality and other issues."

NM-Sen: Tom Udall's (D) Uranium Cleanup Bill Passes Senate Energy and Natural Resources Committee—by poopdogcomedy: "The bill would amend federal law to give states and tribes the ability to apply existing funds for coal-related cleanup efforts to non-coal mine reclamation, including hundreds of abandoned uranium mines throughout New Mexico and the Navajo Nation."

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Originally posted to Daily Kos on Sat Mar 16, 2013 at 01:00 PM PDT.

Also republished by DK GreenRoots, Kosowatt, The Durban Daily, Climate Change SOS, J Town, Climate Hawks, and Meatless Advocates Meetup.

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