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Covering recreation and environmental issues within California
News and information about the environment

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Chief

Safe Harbor Agreement for the Northern Spotted Owl Proposed

[Federal Register: July 8, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 131)]
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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
Fish and Wildlife Service

Safe Harbor Agreement for the Northern Spotted Owl for Fred M. van Eck Forest Foundation, Humboldt County, CA

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Notice of availability and receipt of application.

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SUMMARY: This notice advises the public that the Fred M. van Eck Forest Foundation (Applicant) has applied to the Fish and Wildlife Service(Service) for an enhancement of survival permit pursuant to Section 10(a)(1)(A) of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act). The permit application includes a proposed Safe Harbor Agreement(Agreement) between the Applicant and the Service for the threatened northern spotted owl (Strix occidentalis caruina). The proposed Agreement and permit would remain in effect for 90 years. We request comments from the public on the permit application and an Environmental Action Statement that has been prepared to comply with the National Environmental Policy Act.

DATES: Written comments should be received on or before August 7, 2008.

Click here to read the complete Federal Register Notice>>>

  2437 Hits
Chief

Proposed Delisting of the Concho Water Snake

[Federal Register: July 8, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 131)]
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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR
Fish and Wildlife Service

Endangered and Threatened Wildlife and Plants; Proposed Removal of the Concho Water Snake (Nerodia paucimaculata) From the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife; Removal of Federally Designated Critical Habitat

AGENCY: Fish and Wildlife Service, Interior.

ACTION: Proposed rule.

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SUMMARY: The best available scientific and commercial data indicate that the Concho water snake (Nerodia paucimaculata) has recovered. Therefore, under the authority of the Endangered Species Act of 1973, as amended (Act), we, the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (Service) propose to remove (delist) the Concho water snake (Nerodia paucimaculata) from the Federal List of Endangered and Threatened Wildlife, and accordingly, also remove its federally designated critical habitat. This determination is based on a thorough review of all available information, which indicates that the threats to this species have been eliminated or reduced to the point that the species has recovered and no longer meets the definition of threatened or endangered under the Act.

The Concho water snake is a reptile endemic to central Texas. It was listed as threatened on September 3, 1986, due to threats of habitat modification and destruction (51 FR 31412). Through implementation of recovery efforts, the Service has determined that this species has been recovered and no longer meets the definition of threatened or endangered.

DATES: Comments on the proposed rule must be received on or before September 8, 2008. Public hearing requests must be received by August 22, 2008.

Click here to read the complete Federal Register Notice

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Chief

Question: Why are wetlands and aquatic habitats important?

Question: Why are wetlands and aquatic habitats important? Answer:

 


Wetlands are among the most productive habitats on earth providing shelter and nursery areas for commercially and recreationally important animals like fish and shellfish, as well as wintering grounds for migrating birds. Coastal marshes are particularly valuable for preventing loss of life and property by moderating extreme floods and buffering the land from storms; they also form natural reservoirs and help maintain desirable water quality.

Aquatic habitats like those along the Gulf of Mexico are vital to seabirds, fish, and shellfish; economically the gulf alone contributes billions to the economy. Riverine deep water—like the Mississippi River and its many channels—is not only essential for navigation, industry, and recreation and therefore responsible for billions of dollars to the economy, but is also invaluable for natural resources. Songbirds and waterfowl use rivers as migratory guides, and rivers and lakes are both essential to countless species of fish, amphibians like frogs and salamanders, and reptiles like turtles, snakes, and alligators.

 

Source of this FAQ:
http://www.nwrc.usgs.gov/factshts/nwrcfact.pdf

  2459 Hits
Chief

Guest Opinion: Oil, Gas Leasing a Win-Win for Taxpayers

The following article appeared in the Billings, MT, Gazette, January 12, 2008.

Guest Opinion: Oil, Gas Leasing a Win-Win for Taxpayers

By GENE TERLAND
BLM Montana State Director

A look toward the past often helps us set future goals, but if your New Year's resolution involves energy independence, you might need binoculars for your retrospective view. The last time the U.S. produced more energy than it used, Harry Truman was still president.

That was 1952, and a lot has changed since then. Montana has changed too. We have more people living in more and bigger houses. We have more people driving cars and pickups and SUVs and ATVs and boats and motor homes. We have more people wanting to hunt or fish or hike or just get away from it all. We have more people wanting more public lands preserved in a pristine condition.

Unfortunately, one thing hasn't changed; we don't have any more land, just more pressure from all directions to use it.

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  2543 Hits
Chief

Wind Energy Report Released

The Congressional Research Service has released a report concerning wind power technology, economic, and policy issues. A short summary of the report prepared for Members and Committees of Congress is included below:

Rising energy prices and concern over greenhouse gas emissions have focused congressional attention on energy alternatives, including wind power.  Although wind power currently provides only about 1% of U.S. electricity needs, it is growing more rapidly than any other energy source.  In 2007, over 5,000 megawatts of new wind generating capacity were installed in the United States, second only to new natural gas-fired generating capacity.  Wind power has become “mainstream” in many regions of the country, and is no longer considered an “alternative” energy source.
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Chief

Public Meeting Dates Corrected for Geothermal Leasing PEIS

[Federal Register: June 19, 2008 (Volume 73, Number 119)]
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DEPARTMENT OF THE INTERIOR - Bureau of Land Management
DEPARTMENT OF AGRICULTURE - U.S. Forest Service

Notice of Correction to Notice of Availability of the Draft Programmatic Environmental Impact Statement for Leasing of Geothermal Resources in 11 Western States and Alaska and Notice of Public Hearings

AGENCIES: Bureau of Land Management, Interior; and U.S. Forest Service, Agriculture.

ACTION: Notice of Correction.

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SUMMARY: On June 13, 2008 the BLM published a Notice of Availability in the Federal Register (73 FR 33802), which inadvertently printed an incorrect list of public meeting dates.
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