Currently viewing the category: "Water"

Cattle congregating in the riparian area, Chama, New Mexico. Photo George Wuerthner

SOIL CARBON AND LIVESTOCK

Rangelands make up a large proportion of the Earth’s surface, and the soils hold a significant amount of sequestered carbon (Schuman,G.E et al.  2001). Rangelands are estimated to contain more than one-third of the world’s above […]

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Rural subdivision in Gallatin County, Montana. Photo George Wuerthner

Back when I was a student at the University of Montana in Missoula, I had a girlfriend who managed to rent a house adjacent to the Bitterroot Mountains near Hamilton. All of us were very jealous of her luck in obtaining a place […]

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The Gallatin Range south of Bozeman is one of the many wildlands that would receive wilderness designation in NREPA. Photo George Wuerthner

On March 10th, Representative Maloney of New York reintroduced the Northern Rockies Ecosystem Protection Act (NREPA) legislation into Congress. NREPA is visionary. The legislation is big—it would protect 23 million […]

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Cattle grazing in designated wilderness at the Mojave National Preserve, California. Photo George Wuerthner 

Cows in designated wilderness areas? Does that seem like an oxymoron? Wilderness Areas are supposed to be places where natural processes and native species are given priority. With the election of the Biden administration, it may be […]

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If cattle graze to bare soil, it is true that fires are slowed under such conditions, but the ecological impacts are enormous. Photo George Wuerthner 

When I worked for the BLM, us “ologists” (hydrologist, ecologists, biologists, archaeologists, geologists, and botanists) used to refer to Range Conservationists as Range “Cons” because they conned […]

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Upper Deschutes River is essentially an irrigation cancel for irrigators. Photo George Wuerthner

The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service will soon decide whether to approve a Habitat Conservation Plan (HCP) for the Deschutes River Basin. The HCP was initiated by local irrigators and the city of Prineville who want to maintain their privilege […]

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Most land trusts and many conservation groups frequently ignore the impacts of Agriculture and focus on urbanization and sprawl as the main threat to biodiversity and ecosystems.

A good example is the Teton Land Trust, Idaho. A recent story about their board president, John Nedrow, a farmer, talks about how he put a conservation easement […]

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Senators Steve Daines of Montana and Diane Feinstein of California have once again introduced legislation, the “Emergency Wildfire and Public Safety Act of 2020” that is based upon misguided assumptions that fuel reductions will preclude the large blazes occurring as the West.

Never mind that climate change is the driving force in all these fires […]

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The recent article “Low Flows On Deschutes” highlights why irrigation is a significant threat to our river’s ecological integrity. https://www.bendbulletin.com/localstate/environment/sudden-drops-in-deschutes-river-worries-biologists/article_c0f8df66-e3df-11ea-8d00-53d8f511683c.html

The majority of water removed from the Deschutes is used to grow irrigated pasture and hay for livestock not crops consumed directly by humans.  Photo by George Wuerthner

 

According to […]

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Paradise Valley, Montana. Photo by George Wuerthner

 

Paradise Valley, Montana, is aptly named. The Yellowstone River flows north to Livingston, Montana, framed by the Absaroka Mountains on the east and the Gallatin Range on the West. It’s one of the most stunning landscapes in the entire West.

Due to its location […]

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Quote

‎"At some point we must draw a line across the ground of our home and our being, drive a spear into the land and say to the bulldozers, earthmovers, government and corporations, “thus far and no further.” If we do not, we shall later feel, instead of pride, the regret of Thoreau, that good but overly-bookish man, who wrote, near the end of his life, “If I repent of anything it is likely to be my good behaviour."

~ Edward Abbey