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Trump Auctions Off 150,000 Acres of Public Lands for Fracking Near Utah National Parks

Originally posted on The Extinction Chronicles:
?  Center for Biological Diversity Dec. 12, 2018 11:45AM ESTENERGY https://www.ecowatch.com/fracking-utah-national-parks-2623200218.html?xrs=RebelMouse_fb&ts=1544651115&fbclid=IwAR07PM9jpEkBVQK_LXOnp-1d5T6tmmAS6FPvq7ZOUTmCL2UcvLz5EzAIR9s Arches National Park. Chris Dodds / Flickr / CC BY-SA 2.0 On Tuesday the Trump administration offered more than 150,000 acres of public lands for fossil-fuel extraction near some of Utah’s most iconic landscapes, including Arches and Canyonlands national parks. Dozens of Utahns gathered at the state Capitol to protest the lease sale, which included lands within 10 miles of internationally known protected areas. In addition to Arches and Canyonlands, the Bureau of Land Management leased public lands for fracking near Bears Ears, Canyons of the Ancients and Hovenweep national monuments and Glen Canyon National Recreation Area. “Utahns have demonstrated their commitment to transition away from dirty fossil fuels through clean energy resolutions passed in municipalities across our state. Yet, these commitments continue to be undermined by rampant oil and gas lease sales, which threaten our public health, public lands, and economy. While Utah’s recreational and tourism economies continue to flourish, these attempts to develop sacred cultural, environmental, and recreational spaces for dirty fuels remain a grave and growing threat.” said Ashley Soltysiak, director of the Utah Sierra Club. “Utah is our home and the reckless sale of our public lands with limited public engagement is simply unacceptable and short-sighted.” Fracking in these areas threatens sensitive plants and animals, including the black-footed ferret, Colorado pikeminnow, razorback sucker and Graham’s beardtongue. It also will worsen…

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Researchers unearth ‘new’ extinction

Originally posted on The Extinction Chronicles:
by New York University Credit: CC0 Public Domain https://phys.org/news/2019-09-unearth-extinction.html A team of scientists has concluded that earth experienced a previously underestimated severe mass-extinction event, which occurred about 260 million years ago, raising the total of major mass extinctions in the geologic record to six. “It is crucial that we know the number of severe mass extinctions and their timing in order to investigate their causes,” explains Michael Rampino, a professor in New York University’s Department of Biology and a co-author of the analysis, which appears in the journal Historical Biology. “Notably, all six major mass extinctions are correlated with devastating environmental upheavals—specifically, massive flood-basalt eruptions, each covering more than a million square kilometers with thick lava flows.” Scientists had previously determined that there were five major mass-extinction events, wiping out large numbers of species and defining the ends of geological periods: the end of the Ordovician (443 million years ago), the Late Devonian (372 million years ago), the Permian (252 million years ago), the Triassic (201 million years ago), and the Cretaceous (66 million years ago). And, in fact, many researchers have raised concerns about the contemporary, ongoing loss of species diversity—a development that might be labeled a “seventh extinction” because such a modern mass extinction, scientists have predicted, could end up being as severe as these past events. The Historical Biology work, which also included Nanjing University’s Shu-zhong Shen, focused on the Guadalupian, or Middle Permian period,…

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The Amazon is burning because the world eats so much meat

Originally posted on Exposing the Big Game:
https://www.cnn.com/2019/08/23/americas/brazil-beef-amazon-rainforest-fire-intl/index.html By Eliza Mackintosh, CNN Updated 11:42 AM ET, Fri August 23, 2019 (CNN)While the wildfires raging in the Amazon rainforest may constitute an “international crisis,” they are hardly an accident. The vast majority of the fires have been set by loggers and ranchers to clear land for cattle. The practice is on the rise, encouraged by Jair Bolsonaro, Brazil’s populist pro-business president, who is backed by the country’s so-called “beef caucus.” While this may be business as usual for Brazil’s beef farmers, the rest of the world is looking on in horror. So, for those wondering how they could help save the rainforest, known as “the planet’s lungs” for producing about 20% of the world’s oxygen, the answer may be simple. Eat less meat. It’s an idea that Finland has already floated. On Friday, the Nordic country’s finance minister called for the European Union to “urgently review the possibility of banning Brazilian beef imports” over the Amazon fires. Brazil is the world’s largest exporter of beef, providing close to 20% of the total global exports, according the United States Department of Agriculture (USDA) — a figure that could rise in the coming years. Last year the country shipped 1.64 million tonnes of beef — the highest volume in history — generating $6.57 billion in revenue, according to the Brazilian Beef Exporters Association (Abiec), an association of more than 30 Brazilian meat-packing companies. The growth of Brazil’s beef industry has been driven in…

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NASA’s Investigating the Impact of Arctic Wildfires on Earth. Here’s Why

Originally posted on The Extinction Chronicles:
By Passant Rabie 10 hours ago Science & Astronomy  The wildfires are also harmful to ecosystems and human health, and they’re becoming more frequent. https://www.space.com/nasa-investigates-arctic-wildfires-video.html Using a combination of field and laboratory work, as well as satellite and airborne observations, NASA is launching a study of the effects of Arctic wildfires in Alaska on the surrounding habitat and people’s health, as well as how the increased frequency of these events affects climate forecasting. Wildfires in the Arctic are usually started by lightning strikes and left to burn unless they get too close to infrastructure or people, according to a statement by NASA. However, as a result, the fires tend to spread out and consume large areas of vegetation. “Fires are a natural part of the ecosystem, but what we’re seeing is an accelerated fire cycle: we are getting more frequent and severe fires and larger burned areas,” Liz Hoy, a boreal fire researcher at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, said in the statement. Related: How NASA Is Using Lasers to Study Climate Change (Video) These record-setting wildfires raged across the Northwest Territories of Canada in 2014. (Image credit: Peter Griffith/NASA) Hoy also works as part of NASA’s Arctic-Boreal Vulnerability Experiment (ABoVE), a field campaign that examines the resilience of Arctic and boreal ecosystems and societies in response to changes in the environment. Wildfires in the Arctic contribute to carbon emissions created by the burning of a thick, carbon-rich layer…

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Point Reyes

Originally posted on Jet Eliot:
Point Reyes, Tomales Point, Pacific Ocean side ? Tule elks (male), Point Reyes ? Pt. Reyes from Tomales Point Trail. McClure’s Beach. ? About a two-hour drive north of San Francisco is an expansive park called Point Reyes. Geologically it is a large cape that extends off the Pacific coast. Technically it is Point Reyes…

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