Biodiversity & Species

This is for the birds

More depressing climate change news on bird migration: An Audubon Society study to be released Tuesday found that more than half of 305 birds species in North America, a hodgepodge that includes robins, gulls, chickadees and owls, are spending the winter about 35 miles farther north than they did 40 years ago. So if it’s …

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Preview of a long dry summer

It’s still the rainy season, but California’s drought is already beginning to affect operation of the state and federal water projects that divert water from the Sacramento and San Joaquin watersheds to serve cities and farms from the Bay Area to Southern California.  Yesterday the California Department of Water Resources and U.S. Bureau of Reclamation, …

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Klamath takings litigation heads to the Oregon Supreme Court

As Dan Tarlock and I detailed in our book Water War in the Klamath Basin: Macho Law, Combat Biology, and Dirty Politics, the Klamath Basin has been a hotbed for litigation on a variety of fronts since irrigation deliveries from the Klamath Reclamation Project were temporarily curtailed in the critically dry summer of 2001.  Now …

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A Public Lands Agenda for the New Administration

Given the overarching issue of climate change, it’s probably unrealistic to assume that the question of how best to manage the nation’s public lands will be an immediate priority of the Obama Administration.  And the economic crisis currently confronting the U.S. likely pushes environmental issues off the top tier of the Administration’s priority list as …

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Conservation in a warming world

The latest issue of the journal Science includes another reminder that our current approach to conservation is ill-suited to a world where the climate is changing rapidly.  A study led by Phillip van Mentgem of the U.S. Geological Survey (323 Science 521 (Jan. 23, 2009), subscription required) finds that trees are dying more rapidly in …

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Obama and Climate Change

The Obama Administration will face hard regulatory choices on climate change almost immediately.

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Undoing the new ESA consultation regulations?

Nick Rahall (D – W.Va.), joined by 12 co-sponsors, has introduced a joint resolution under the Congressional Review Act to overturn the Bush administration’s midnight regulations on ESA section 7 consultation. Some of the many problems with the new regulations have been explained in comments submitted by Berkeley Law profs Eric Biber (coordinating the work …

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