Ecosystems

Portuguese Firefighters Struggle to Contain Wildfires
August 5, 2005 12:00 AM - Associated Press

Strong winds and sweltering temperatures fueled some 20 wildfires across drought-stricken Portugal on Thursday as the number of firefighters on duty nearly doubled compared to the previous day, authorities said.

Trees Are Killed to Save Rare Woodpecker
August 5, 2005 12:00 AM - Caryn Rousseau, Associated Press

In a sort of ecological trade-off, conservationists headed into the Arkansas woods Thursday to kill dozens of trees in hopes of helping the ivory-billed woodpecker, a bird that up until recently was feared extinct.

Shuttle Commander Sees Wide Environmental Damage
August 5, 2005 12:00 AM - Jeff Franks, Reuters

Commander Eileen Collins said astronauts on shuttle Discovery had seen widespread environmental destruction on Earth and warned Thursday that greater care was needed to protect natural resources. "The atmosphere almost looks like an eggshell on an egg, it's so very thin," she said. "We know that we don't have much air, we need to protect what we have."

Official Says Pelican Exodus Not Alarming
August 4, 2005 12:00 AM - James MacPherson, Associated Press

A top federal wildlife official says the pelican mystery at the Chase Lake National Wildlife Refuge may be a natural correction. Nearly 30,000 white pelicans abandoned the refuge last year, leaving eggs and chicks behind.

Virginia Officials Educate Immigrant Communities about U.S. Environmental Laws
August 4, 2005 12:00 AM - Dionne Walker, Associated Press

One year after a bear parts sting landed dozens of Asians in jail, Virginia officials are pursuing more effective ways to educate the state's diverse communities about environmental laws that often clash with cultural traditions.

Forest Fires in Indonesia Blanket Malaysian Cities with Unhealthy Haze
August 3, 2005 12:00 AM - Associated Press

Forest fires in Indonesia's Sumatra province covered Malaysia's main city Kuala Lumpur and 32 other towns Tuesday with a smoky haze that reduced visibility to as low as one kilometer (half a mile). The Department of Environment said air quality in an area in central Perak state was "unhealthy," and it downgraded air quality in 32 other areas nationwide, including Kuala Lumpur, from "good" to "moderate."

Federal Judge Blocks Easing of Logging Rules in the Northwest
August 3, 2005 12:00 AM - Gene Johnson, Associated Press

A federal judge struck down a move by the Bush administration to ease logging restrictions in the Northwest, saying the government failed to consider the effect on rare plants and animals.

California Air Regulators Announce New Emission Factor for Dairies
August 2, 2005 12:00 AM - Kathleen Hennessey, Associated Press

Dairies are the No. 1 source of smog-producing pollution in the San Joaquin Valley, producing more than even cars and light trucks, according to a report released by air regulators on Monday.

Researchers Say Arctic Teeming With Life
August 2, 2005 12:00 AM - Associated Press

Beneath its ice, the Arctic Ocean is teeming with life, says a team of international scientists that just completed a 30-day expedition to the northern ocean. With the aid of a remote-operated underwater vehicle, a photo platform lowered from the vessel, diving suits and 24-hour sunlight, the team collected samples from places never before seen by the human eye.

Louisiana Agonizes over the Future of its Majestic Cypress Forests
August 2, 2005 12:00 AM - Cain Burdeau, Associated Press

Bald cypress, Louisiana's state tree, has never been sacred. If anything, using the great wood has always been the Louisiana way. But that could change if Gov. Kathleen Blanco decides that Louisiana's sinking and disappearing coastline just can't take another culling of its majestic delta forests.

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