Increase in Beached Whales

More Frequent Whale Strandings Has Experts on Edge

Full story at above link

While the National Marine Fisheries Service has declared an Unusual Mortality Event (UME) in the Northern Gulf of Mexico, it’s more than just oil spills that are causing increased strandings worldwide.

The occurences of beachings has increased.  It could be any number of things at this point from nutrition to sonar throwing them off their intended path.  The BP oil spill is a possible cause but might not be the only one.

NOAA provides this chart of whale strandings in the Gulf of Mexico, showing the marked increase:

Speculations continue.  It is still very uncertain as to why this is happening in different parts of the world.

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Chesapeake Bay Foundation | Improving Water Quality Through Streamside Tree Buffers

Chesapeake Bay Foundation | Improving Water Quality Through Streamside Tree Buffers.

Spring is the perfect time to plant trees. And establishing a streamside forested buffer will not only help protect water quality, it will attract wildlife by providing much-needed habitat. The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP), a federally funded program, provides landowners and farmers with the resources to design and install these buffers. CREP also pays annual rental payments to the landowner.

There are many benefits to forested buffers, including preventing pollutants from reaching streams, creating wildlife habitat, and improving water quality. Streamside trees also help reduce stormwater and flooding problems by slowing down and absorbing rainwater as it moves across the land. Buffers also provide recreational opportunities like wildlife and bird watching, and they improve property values.

The following information is from www.creppa.org:

WHAT IS CREP?

The Conservation Reserve Enhancement Program (CREP) is a voluntary conservation program which rewards producers and landowners for installing conservation practices on their land, and offers up to 100% cost share reimbursement for installation, annual rental payments, and cash incentives.

For more detailed information visit the PA Game Commission website.

Any producer or landowner can enroll in CREP, which is available for eligible marginal cropland, pastureland, and land along non-forested streams.

Continuous enrollment in CREP is available for a limited time,so don’t wait until the last minute to take advantage of this opportunity to cash in on conservation!

CREP BENEFITS

  • Protects Pennsylvania’s streams, lakes and wetlands.
  • Provides wildlife habitat for biodiversity.
  • Covers the cost of streambank fencing, stream crossings, and stock tanks.
  • Pays for planting native trees, shrubs and grasses.
  • Reduces wear and tear on farm equipment, (through enrollment of wet or steep “problem acres.”)
  • Protects animals from diseases that can be transmitted by waterborne bacteria, such as mastitis, Johne’s disease, BVD and foot rot.
  • Saves you time and earns you money.

CREP KEYWORDS

  • Soil Rental Rate (SRR) – Calculated cash payment dependent upon soil type.
  • Erodibility Index (EI) – Calculation based on soil type and slope.
  • Highly Erodible Land (HEL) –  Land susceptible to erosion (usually found on steep slopes, but depends on soil type and vegetative cover).
  • Marginal Pastureland – Land near a stream or water body not currently covered with trees or woody growth.
  • Riparian Zone – Land adjacent to stream channels and other waterways.
  • Riparian Buffer – Strips of trees, shrubs and/or grasses along the edges of waterways that stabilize banks and filter runoff.
  • Wetland –  An area that frequently is inundated by surface and/or groundwater, providing a unique habitat for wildlife, improving water quality and protecting against floods.  A wetland is different than a pond.
  • Shallow Water Area – A source of water with an average depth of 6 – 18 inches which provides wildlife habitat.
  • Native Grasses – Warm and cool season grasses naturally occur in western PA.  Warm season grasses include indiangrass, big bluestem, and switchgrass.  Cool season grasses include orchardgrass, timothy and perennial ryegrasss.

A variety of wildlife depends on grassland habitats and adjacent riparian areas year-round. Birds use the many layers of vegetation cover (trees, shrubs, and grasses) and plentiful plant species found in these habitats for food and cover. During the breeding season, many ground-nesting bird and mammal species build nests in the vegetation and use the cover to raise and protect their young. In the winter, seeds are foraged and dead vegetation creates pockets where ground-dwelling birds can take shelter. Butterflies, and other enjoyable insects, feed on the flowers that grow in the grassland. Unlike the specific vegetation of riparian corridors, wetlands, and grasslands, the wildlife that depend on these areas commonly travel between them for both food and shelter.

Before And After

Shutiz Fence Before

Shutiz Fence After

Wandrisco Before

Wandrisco After

1Sky and 350.org Merge under 350.org Banner to Unite Large-scale Powerful Grassroots Climate Movement | Common Dreams

350.org

Image via Wikipedia

1Sky and 350.org Merge under 350.org Banner to Unite Large-scale Powerful Grassroots Climate Movement | Common Dreams.

More information at above link.

Grassroots groups 350.org and 1Sky today announced they will combine under the 350.org banner and dramatically expand their work. “In light of last night’s vote, it is more important than ever to unite and train a bigger, more powerful grassroots movement capable of attacking our corporate polluter opponents and fighting for a real clean energy future. This moment is our call to action,” said Liz Butler, Campaign Director of 1Sky.

In an essay announcing the merger, McKibben and new 350.org board member, author and activist Naomi Klein, wrote, “The idea is not to supplant the Washington green groups, but instead to give the whole movement new clout—enough clout to withstand the crushing power of oil money.”

Use Your Outside Voice | The Nature Conservancy

The Nature Conservancy: Protecting nature. Pre...

Image via Wikipedia

Use Your Outside Voice | The Nature Conservancy.

More information at the above link.

The spending bill passed by the U.S. House of Representatives disproportionately cuts conservation programs by 90-100%. While conservation and environmental programs should shoulder a fair portion of the burden of the budget reductions needed to reduce our national debt, disproportionate cuts run counter to America’s long bi-partisan tradition of protecting land and water for people and nature.

These are programs that protect the health and safety of the water we drink, the food we eat, the air we breathe and habitat for America’s plants and animals. These are the programs that protect our national parks and landmarks, our national wildlife areas, our coasts and waterways.

There is another link on the page that will give you information on how you can take action by calling and mailing your Representative.  There is a sample letter in case you are not used to having to write letters about saving things in this world you are passionate about.  Now is as good a time as any!!

Petition Site That Cares: Care2 – largest online community for healthy and green living, human rights and animal welfare.

Care2 – largest online community for healthy and green living, human rights and animal welfare..

Randy Paynter, CEO and President of C2, started this site in 1998.

The idea is simple: Make it easy for everyone to live a healthy, green lifestyle and impact the causes they care about most.

When he was 13 he was traveling with his father up the Amazon in a thatch-covered boat.  His father was an ornithologist (study of birds).

“What struck me most was the contrast between the remote tribes living in harmony with the rainforest, and the poverty and deforestation in the most “modernized” towns we visited”, said Paynter on the About Us page of the site.  He saw that the world was terribly out of balance and began to believe that we each have the power to make positive changes in our world.

“The answer came in 1998.  The Internet.  Finally, the power to mobilize the world was at hand.  I raised money from some kind and crazy souls, and then really lucked out in finding two extraordinary partners — Matt McGlynn (now our chief technology officer) and Camilla Eriksson (now our vice president of eCards.  In September 1998, we launched Care2 from my tiny apartment” Paynter writes.

The website is driven by those who wish to make changes in this world.  They are a certified B Corporation.

The Butterflies

 

 

 

 

The butterflies on the logo are designed after a Physics concept called “The Butterfly Effect“.  It symbolizes to them that one person can take a small step and make a difference.

You can earn butterfly credits by taking various actions like signing a petition and taking the daily action.  These credits can be redeemed for gifts that make the world a better place.

There is an online community and plenty of fun topics and polls.  you can create groups or join existing ones.

Taking Action

There are so many petitions you can sign on a wide array of topics and issues that you may support.  There is a daily action that you can do and earn credits for.

There is also a whole section on Healthy and Green Living.

I have been signed up for emails through this site for some time now.  Some of my other blogs are based on these emails about petitions available tailored to the issues I am concerned with at the moment.  I have always had a good experience with this Organization.  Enjoy, and help by taking your own little steps…we can make a difference!

On The Elephant In The Room: Population And The Environment : TreeHugger

Malthus cautioned law makers on the effects of...

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On The Elephant In The Room: Population And The Environment : TreeHugger.

 

We hear it all the time, and have heard it since Malthus: That overpopulation is the primary cause of the world’s environmental ills. It makes sense in simple logical terms: The more people there are consuming natural resources, the greater a threat humanity poses to exhausting them. Hard to argue with that. But the issue is of course more complex — and there’s an interesting back-and-forth over at Grist on the subject to prove it. One writer argues that fears of a rapidly expanding population are overblown — constituting a “green myth”, even — and that those fears should be redirected towards consumerism. Is that right?

http://www.thedailyshow.com/watch/wed-april-21-2010/fred-pearce

 

Seeing REDD on Climate Change | CommonDreams.org

Seeing REDD on Climate Change | CommonDreams.org.

Full article is available at the above link

As climate change negotiations come to a close in Cancun, Birginia Suarez-Pinlac is seeing red. The environmental lawyer from the Philippines is worried that a plan for Reducing Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD) constitutes a land grab, transferring natural wealth from the poor to the rich under the auspices of saving the planet.