April 2009

Earth Day with FLCR!

Donnie Ratcliff (FWS) & Kari Burr (FFC) Reaching Out on Earth Day!


Thanks to everyone that stopped by our FLCR table on Earth Day 2009 at Victory Park. We expanded our membership by 50 motivated and concerned citizens!


Jeremy Terhune

Slow Fish Special: Salmon Crisis

For the second season in a row, commercial salmon fishing will be nonexistent in California and southern Oregon this year, as Pacific salmon stocks plummet. Following news that the number of salmon spawning has dropped drastically over the past two years, the decision was made last week to cancel the commercial salmon fishing season and reduce the recreational season to just ten days.


On April 16, Conservation International and National Geographic’s Great Turtle Race hits the open ocean. This year, eleven leatherback sea turtles will be racing from Canada’s Atlantic coast to the beaches of the Caribbean. Don’t miss out on the action.

Here are a few exciting details about the upcoming race: – All 11 turtles are tagged with a satellite-tracking device that will allow you to follow them, in real-time. – U.S. Olympic swimmers Amanda Beard, Janet Evans, Jason Lezak, and Eric Shanteau will “coach” our competitors and post notes of encouragement to the turtles throughout the race. – Rock bands REM and Pearl Jam have jumped on the turtle bandwagon. Both bands have picked their early favorites.”


 National Georgaphic’s site: http://www.greatturtlerace.com/

Conservation International’s site: http://getinvolved.conservation.org/site/PageServer?pagename=turtlerace2009

Sign up here for daily email updates on the turtle race!

Hi Everyone,

 Just wanted to update you on the coming events at the Nature Center:

 We have Barbara Barrigan-Parrilla of ‘Restore the Delta’ coming to speak on April 17th to discuss the plight of the Delta and what can be done to help save it.

 The Twined Tule Basketry class will be the following day, the 18th, with Lucy Parker teaching us the techniques of native basketry.

On the following Saturday, the 25th, is the “BugFest”, an all day family adventure into the fascinating world of insects and other arthropods.

For May we have Linda Voorheis of Manteca Unified coming to talk on the 15th about the Miwok and Yokuts people that lived and flourished in our region prior to European settlement of the area.

 And we are planning another Star Party for the 30th.

 So I hope you will plan to attend as many of the events as possible and show your support to the guest speakers and the Nature Center. There is more information in the attached flyers or call us at the Nature Center, 953-8814.


James Rexroth, Nature Center Coordinator, Oak Grove Nature Center

Phone: (209) 953-8814                                             Website: www.mgzoo.com

Email: jrexroth@sjgov.org

EPA to Public: How Do You Protect Your Environment?


Contact:  Brendan Gilfillan, 202-564-4355 / gilfillan.brendan@epa.gov


(Washington, D.C. – March 23, 2009) In anticipation of Earth Day, the Environmental Protection Agency today launched an interactive video and photo project asking the public to share the ways they enjoy and protect their environment.


These projects are part of EPA’s multi-event celebration of Earth Month and of EPA’s 39 year history – which will highlight the agency’s renewed commitment to protecting human health and the environment.


The EPA is asking filmmakers and photographers around the world to submit their own videos and photos documenting what steps they take to protect the water they drink, the air they breathe and the overall environmental health of their communities.


Participants can submit their video entries to the EPA’s Earth Day Video Project group on YouTube. Photo entries should be submitted via Flickr.


Categories in the video project are:

  • Reducing your carbon footprint
  • Conserving and protecting water
  • Protecting the environment
  • Reduce, reuse, recycle


Categories in the photo project are:

  • People and the environment
  • The beauty of nature
  • Wildlife


EPA officials will select videos and photos to feature on the website throughout April. The agency will accept videos and photos from today through the end of April.


This release is the first of several to announce EPA’s planned Earth Month activities.


To participate in the Earth Day Photo project: http://www.epa.gov/earthday/photoproject/


To participate in the Earth Day Video project: http://www.epa.gov/earthday/videoproject/


The International Conference on Ecology and Transportation
September 13-17, 2009
Duluth Entertainment Convention Center
Duluth, Minnesota


The International Conference on Ecology and Transportation is conducted every two years to identify and share quality research applications and best management practices that address wildlife, habitat, and ecosystem issues related to the delivery of surface transportation systems. ICOET is the primary forum for an international gathering of foremost experts in ecology and transportation to showcase effects, issues, and, most importantly, solutions.


ICOET is a multi-disciplinary, inter-agency supported event administered by the Center for Transportation and the Environment at North Carolina State University.



ICOET is pleased to announce the opening of registration for its 2009 conference. Visit the ICOET 2009 registration website today to sign up and take advantage of the discounted early registration fee of only $275 for the full conference – a $100 savings off the regular conference fee. Students with a valid ID also can register early to attend ICOET for just $125!

A preliminary conference agenda will be posted online this week. The ICOET Program Committee has just completed its selections for technical papers and posters to be presented at this year’s conference. Once all authors have been notified and have accepted their invitations to present, a more complete conference program will be available later in the month.

ICOET 2009 received nearly 200 abstract submissions – a record number for the conference. With a wide range of important topics to be addressed, this year’s ICOET promises to be an exciting and rewarding experience. We hope you’ll be with us in Duluth, so register now and make your plans to attend!

Our transportation systems and ecosystems need to be addressed in the context of global climate change and shifts in transportation funding and priorities. Our natural and built environments are confronting changes that will unfold on multiple scales and impact many interrelated elements. The high degree of interaction between transportation infrastructure and natural systems requires increasingly interdisciplinary, integrated approaches to planning, building, maintaining and monitoring the health of these systems.

In 2009, ICOET will focus on the challenges ahead as we adapt for future global climate changes, shifts in transportation demand and patterns, and evolving environmental and transportation policy.

Center for Transportation and the Environment (CTE)
James Martin, jbm@ncsu.edu, 919-515-8620
Eugene Murray, eugene_murray@ncsu.edu, 919-515-8037

On behalf of the ICOET Steering Committee, we look forward to your participation at ICOET 2009!

coastal-cleanup-day-031Report lists America’s 10 most endangered rivers
By Azadeh Ansari

(CNN) — Rivers are the arteries of our infrastructure. Flowing from highlands to the sea, they breathe life into ecosystems and communities.

But many rivers in the United States are in trouble.

Rivers in Alaska, California and the South are among the 10 most endangered, according to a report released Tuesday by American Rivers, a leading river conservation group.

The annual report uses data from thousands of rivers groups, local governments, environmental organizations and citizen watchdogs to identify waterways under imminent threat by dams, industry or development.

“Our nation is at a transformational moment when it comes to rivers and clean water,” said Rebecca Wodder, president of American Rivers. “Water is life, yet our nation’s water infrastructure is so outdated that our clean drinking water, flood protection and river health face unprecedented threats.”

American Rivers has released its annual endangered rivers report since 1986. The report is not a list of the nation’s most polluted waterways, but highlights 10 rivers facing decisions in the coming year that could determine their future.

Here is American Rivers’ Most Endangered Rivers list for 2009:

1) Sacramento-San Joaquin River System

Location: California

Outdated water and flood management puts California’s largest watershed at the top of America’s most endangered rivers list for 2009. A recent breach in the delta’s 1,100-mile levee system could have dire effects on surrounding ecosystems, farming and agriculture, commercial fishing and California’s civil infrastructure. State and federal authorities are looking at alternative water-management strategies for the river system, which serves 25 million Californians and more than 5 million acres of farmland.

2) Flint River

Location: Georgia

The Flint is one of 40 rivers nationwide that still flow undammed for more than 200 miles. Conservationists say that dams proposed by Georgia lawmakers would bury more than 50 river miles, destroy fishing and boating opportunities and cost taxpayers millions of dollars. The American Rivers group believes that fixing the state’s leaky pipes, using water meters and minimizing water waste would be a cheaper and more cost-effective alternative.

3) Lower Snake River

Location: Idaho, Washington, Oregon

The U.S. Army Corps of Engineers has built four dams to irrigate and generate energy for the Northwest, but these dams also prevent salmon and steelhead trout from reaching their spawning areas. Every year, those dams kill as many as 90 percent of juvenile salmon and steelhead trout that migrate downstream to the ocean. Conservationists say that removing the dams would eliminate a growing flood threat in Lewiston, Idaho, and create an opportunity to modernize the region’s transportation and energy systems.

4) Mattawoman Creek

Location: Maryland

A highway development project here jeopardizes one of the Chesapeake Bay’s few remaining healthy streams. The project threatens clean water sources, thousands of acres of forests and wetlands, and an internationally-renowned, multimillion-dollar largemouth bass fishery.

5) North Fork of the Flathead River

Location: Montana

A proposed coal-mining project across the Canadian border puts Montana’s North Fork of the Flathead River in jeopardy. An estimated 50,000 acres of the Flathead headwaters could be transformed into an industrial gas field. The projects threaten the river’s clean water, local agriculture, fish and wildlife and recreational industries such as rafting, camping, fishing and boating. American Rivers and its partners have called on local Canadian governments and the U.S. State Department to work together to halt these projects.

6) Saluda River

Location: South Carolina

Excess levels of sewage waste threaten the drinking water of more than 500,000 South Carolina residents, conservationists say. Sewage in the river increases phosphorous and algae levels, depletes oxygen, and kills fish and other aquatic life. American Rivers is asking the South Carolina Department of Health and Environmental Control to improve sewage-treatment standards and ensure the river reduces its phosphorous levels by 25 to 50 percent.

7) Laurel Hill Creek

Location: Pennsylvania

Known for its fishing, swimming and kayaking, this popular vacation spot faces threats from a bottling plant and tourism-related development. Without adequate planning and safeguards, withdrawals will continue to exceed the creek’s reasonable capacity, putting recreation, the local water supply, and fish and wildlife in jeopardy.

8) Beaver Creek

Location: Alaska

One of the nation’s last wild rivers faces extinction if an oil- and gas-development project constructs 600 miles of roads and pipelines, airstrips, drilling pads, and gravel mines along the creek. Alaska native communities depend on the area for subsistence hunting and fishing. It’s also a popular destination for anglers, boaters, skiers and hunters.

9) Pascagoula River

Location: Mississippi

The U.S. Department of Energy wants to hollow out natural salt domes 30 miles northwest of the Pascagoula to create a storage area for up to 160 million barrels of oil. A pipeline 330 miles in length would be constructed to withdraw water from the Pascagoula to dissolve the salt domes and distribute oil to and from the site. The DOE predicts 18 oil spills and 75 spills of salty, polluted water during the construction and initial fill of the hollowed domes, damaging rivers, streams, and wetlands in the basin, conservationists say.

10) Lower St. Croix National Scenic Riverway

Location: Minnesota, Wisconsin

Rezoning of a 26-mile stretch of the river’s state-protected section would allow for the construction of a major development on the riverfront. American Rivers believes the development could lead to land erosion along the river and more storm run-off while harming the region’s biodiversity.

“Being named as one of America’s most endangered rivers is not an end for the river, but rather a beginning,” said Wodder.

Through the collaborative efforts of citizens and local, state and national governments, a number of waterways from past American Rivers’ endangered lists have been preserved.

“With the listing comes a national spotlight and action from thousands of citizens across the country,” Wodder said. “These 10 rivers have a chance to be reborn and to serve as models for other rivers all across America.”

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