Yet another deadly tree disease is spreading in North America. This one, documented in 8 states so far, affects black walnuts. Early hints indicate it could also affect other, agriculturally significant walnut tree species.
In the Yaak Valley of Montana, environmentalists have been talking to loggers, snowmobilers and other longtime opponents of wilderness protection about the future of public lands. Rick Bass writes of his involvement in a cooperative effort that could lead to the first wilderness-area designation in the state in a quarter-century.
"U.S. Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack on Friday outlined a vision for managing the nation's forests that placed a high priority on restoration to protect water resources and combat climate change."
"The Bush administration acted illegally when it opened millions of acres (hectares) of U.S. national forests to road-building and logging, a federal appeals court ruled on Wednesday. The U.S. Appeals Court for the Ninth Circuit effectively reinstated a 2001 rule that bars development in recognized 'roadless' areas of national forests, except in Idaho and the Tongass National Forest in Alaska."
The indigenous Kamayura tribe in Brazil's rain forest are losing their traditional source of food. The fish are disappearing from their lake as the Amazon region region is made hotter and drier by deforestation -- and some say by climate change.
"It will be hot, dry and a bad fire year for much of the West, Forest Service researchers are predicting."
Winds are whipping up wildfires in a British Columbia community where housing subdivisions have encroached on surrounding forests in recent years. Thousands of people are being evacuated from their homes.
"The U.S. Forest Service agreed Monday to sell timber to a Ketchikan mill in a roadless area of the Tongass National Forest after the Obama administration's approved the sale."
"The Obama administration is withdrawing a controversial Bush-era logging plan for millions of acres of federal forests in western Oregon."
The bark beetles devastating millions of acres of western pine forests are actually a native insect whose destruction -- like that of wildfire -- is part of a natural cycle of forest regeneration.