The World’s First Floating Wind Farm

Two weeks after passing a law that completely re-envisions the country’s energy system, France is already making moves to bolster its wind potential by inviting companies to submit proposals for floating wind farms off both its northern and southern coasts. France’s environmental agency ADEME posted a tender document calling for proposals for wind farms comprised of...

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Long Trails and Wild Spaces

The sign at the trailhead stated: “Beware of mountain lions.” Next to it another sign was posted that warned about the dangers of and correct behavior in a bear encounter. You are entering the Continental Divide Trail, one of America’s longest and most challenging trails.Here on the Continental Divide Trail, mountain lions, bears, wolves-and even the...

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Desert showcase: A look at America’s desert wilderness areas

Unbearably hot. Dry. Lifeless. Those are a few terms that the word “desert” all too often conjures up. While deserts are loved by many wilderness enthusiasts, it’s far too easy for the general public to overlook these areas when thinking about wilderness. No doubt, deserts can be hot and dry, but look a little closer and the life within them is...

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The Point of No Return: Climate Change Nightmares Are Already Here

Historians may look to 2015 as the year when it really started hitting the fan. Some snapshots: In just the past few months, record-setting heat waves in Pakistan and India each killed more than 1,000 people. In Washington state’s Olympic National Park, the rainforest caught fire for the first time in living memory. London reached 98 degrees Fahrenheit during the...

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Ginseng poaching on the rise in Great Smoky Mountains National Park

Ginseng, the popular health supplement, grows naturally in Great Smoky Mountains National Park. There’s only one problem- poachers. Poaching has become a major problem for the park. Savvy thieves are uprooting the valuable plant and selling the ginseng roots for a profit. “They know what they’re looking for. They’re experienced in this type of...

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Forest Service Report: Rising Firefighting Costs Raises Alarms

For the first time in its 110-year history, the Forest Service, part of the U.S. Department of Agriculture, is spending more than 50 percent of its budget to suppress the nation’s wildfires. A new report released today by the Forest Service estimates that within a decade, the agency will spend more than two-thirds of its budget to battle ever-increasing fires,...

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Help the National Forest Foundation bring a bison webcam to Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie

In fall of 2015, the Prairie State – Illinois – will get a new herd of bison. Part of a broader restoration effort at Midewin National Tallgrass Prairie that aims to return this special place to its original tallgrass prairie ecosystem, the bison reintroduction opens an exciting new chapter for Midewin and the country. The webcam will feature the new bison herd as they...

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Woodward County, Oklahoma: Why do so many here doubt climate change?

By John D. Sutter, CNN I was wandering around the rolling plains of northwest Oklahoma looking for one person – one person – who believes in climate change science when I met the woman dressed all in yellow. A wide-brimmed, lemon-colored hat orbited her head. Her loafers were the color of butter. Everything in between was a jubilee of sunshine. Could she be...

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National Parks Losing Rangers Just When They’re Needed the Most

America’s national parks have never been so popular: Last year saw the highest-ever level of daily visits and campers to Yellowstone, Joshua Tree, and the 57 other nature reserves. Yet the number of park rangers available to help travelers find the perfect trail, answer questions about area flora and fauna, and enforce rules to protect the environment (and other laws) is...

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What’s actually driving opponents of the Clean Power Plan?

The Washington Post reports that Senator Mitch McConnell of Kentucky has already organized a boycott of the Environmental Protection Agency’s Clean Power Plan, even before it’s released. Never mind the fact that Kentucky state officials expect to meet the plan’s requirements to cut pollution from power plants “with relatively little effort.” In fact, the newspaper’s...

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Wildfire Burning Near Old Fort, NC

NEBO, N.C., August 1, 2015 – The Wolf Creek wildfire is burning on the Pisgah National Forest in the Heartbreak Ridge and Jarrett Creek area of McDowell County northwest of Old Fort, NC. The wildfire, reported the evening of July 31st, is moving slowly and is estimated at twenty-five acres and is twenty percent contained. The U.S. Forest Service (USFS) and N.C....

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Grand Canyon’s North Rim is remotely satisfying

These are sights you do not forget, no need for a smartphone or GoPro. The Grand Canyon constantly surprises and delights. And it is at the North Rim, the less-visited but no less sublime national park outpost, where you can experience the Grand Canyon in its purest form – unless, of course, you have the temerity and back-country skills to camp out for days on the canyon...

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The most polluted US national parks

The National Parks Conservation Association issued a report that found some of the country’s most popular national parks are plagued by polluted air and hazy skies — and are decades behind schedule getting rid of them. The report flunked Sequoia, Kings Canyon, Joshua Tree and Yosemite in California — giving each park an F for routinely having unhealthful levels of ozone...

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The West Is Still On Fire

Just in time for peak tourist season, Montana’s Glacier National Park is on fire. As of July 28, some 3,200 acres of the park were engulfed by wildfire, which began a week ago and caused park officials to shut down three separate campsites throughout the park as well as close off the St. Mary Visitor Center. As of the 29th, the wildfire was 56 percent contained, and...

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New Report Reveals The Severe Economic Impacts Climate Change Will Have In The South

Climate change is set to hit the Southeast United States hard. That’s the conclusion of a new report from the Risky Business Project, a nonprofit that focuses on the economic impacts of climate change. The report, which focused on 12 states found that the increased heat and humidity that these states are expected to experience as the climate changes will put the region’s...

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13 Giant Companies Make Big Climate Pledges

Thirteen giant companies joined the Obama administration’s Act on Climate initiative, announcing at least $140 billion in new low-carbon investment and more than 1,600 megawatts (MW) of new renewable energy, the White House said. The pledge from Coca-Cola, Walmart, Apple, Google, Bank of America, Goldman Sachs, and other big-name companies comes in advance of the United...

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Public Land Under Siege: US Wilderness

On the 26th of March 2015, the United States’ senate voted to pass SA 838, a budget amendment that constitutes the first step in allowing the transfer of certain types of federal land into the stewardship of individual states and paving the way for the sale of these lands to private concerns. The amendment, proposed by Alaskan senator Lisa Murkowski, garnered 51 “yeas”...

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Fossil fuel companies impose more in climate costs than they make in profits

It is fairly well understood by now that releasing carbon dioxide and other greenhouse gases into the atmosphere imposes an economic cost, in the form of climate change impacts. In most cases, however, those responsible for carbon emissions are not required to pay that cost. Instead, it’s borne mainly by the world’s poor and low-lying countries, and of course...

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Earth’s Most Famous Climate Scientist Issues Bombshell Sea Level Warning

In what may prove to be a turning point for political action on climate change, a breathtaking new study casts extreme doubt about the near-term stability of global sea levels. The study—written by James Hansen, NASA’s former lead climate scientist, and 16 co-authors, many of whom are considered among the top in their fields—concludes that glaciers in Greenland and...

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Progress on Bipartisan Plan to Reauthorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund

Senate Energy and Natural Resources Chairman Lisa Murkowski (R-Alaska) and Ranking Member Maria Cantwell (D-Wash.) announced a bipartisan agreement to permanently authorize the Land and Water Conservation Fund. The law’s current 25-year authorization expires on September 30, 2015. “This is a huge step forward at a critical time because the program’s current authorization...

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EPA to study effects of Roundup on 1,500 endangered species

300 million pounds of glyphosate are used in the U.S. each year, but its impacts are largely unknown. For more than a decade, milkweed, that tall green plant with purple or orange flowers, has been rapidly declining in Midwestern states. Little research has been done on the abundance of milkweed in Western states, though many scientists suspect it may be struggling as...

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English national park’s are brimming with nature’s riches

A stock-take of the 10 parks established to preserve the England’s natural riches shows how they have become vital sanctuaries for a wonderful array of threatened and rare plants and animals. While the national parks cover only 10 per cent of England, they contain a high proportion of habitats such as heath, fen and ancient woodland that have been lost over the...

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Study Show High-Risk Areas for Lyme Disease Growing

The geographic areas where Lyme disease is a bigger danger have grown dramatically, according to a new government study published this week. U.S. cases remain concentrated in the Northeast and upper Midwest. But now more areas in those regions are considered high risk. “The risk is expanding, in all directions,” said the lead author, Kiersten Kugeler of the...

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Idaho mining dispute raises questions about the future of wilderness

A grandfathered mining claim has opened the doors to development in the Frank Church – River of No Return Wilderness. “Nothing in this Act shall prevent within national forest wilderness areas any activity, including prospecting, for the purpose of gathering information about mineral or other resources, if such activity is carried on in a manner compatible with the...

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Land and Water Conservation Fund Protects Trail Experiences

Major national scenic trails such as the Appalachian Trail, Continental Divide Trail, and Pacific Crest Trail traverse thousands of miles across our beautiful country. Hikers attempting a thru-hike or continuous hike of the trails travel through literally scores of national forests and national parks, and scattered parcels of private land. The private land along the...

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Something’s Changing in North Carolina: First Major Wind Project in the South Breaks Ground

Big news from North Carolina – wind company Iberdola and retail giant Amazon broke ground on a new wind farm in northeastern North Carolina that’s not only the first major wind farm in the state, but the first major wind project in the South. It’s an empty field now, but this area in northeastern North Carolina will soon be home to some towering wind...

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How Big Water is trying to stop the National Park Service from cleaning up plastic bottles

The National Park Service thought it had a good strategy for reining in the discarded water bottles that clog the trash cans and waste stream of the national parks: stop selling disposable bottles and let visitors refill reusable ones with public drinking water. But Big Water has stepped in to block the parks from banning the plastic pollutants — and the industry found...

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Conservationists Want You to Stop Building Rock Piles

Cairns have a long history and purpose, one that newer stacks sometimes subvert. The Gorham Mountain Trail at Acadia National park winds up through a forested mountain slope before bursting out onto one of the granite-boulder covered summits for which the park is famous. But once you get up there, following the loop back down would be tricky if it weren’t for rock stacks...

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Nature Is Speaking

Nature doesn’t need people. People need Nature. Human beings are part of Nature. Nature is not dependent on human beings to exist. Human beings, on the other hand, are totally dependent on Nature to exist. The growing number of people on the planet and how we live here is going to determine the future of Nature . And the future of us. Nature will go on, no matter...

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President Obama protects three new national monuments

Conservationists work tirelessly to protect America’s most wild and treasured parks, forests, monuments, wildlife refuges and other public lands. President Obama has responded by protecting natural wonders in California, Nevada and Texas as national monuments, to be cherished and enjoyed for generations to come. Berryessa Snow Mountain, in California, showcases the Inner...

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An Unprecedented Number Of Canadian Wildfires Send Smoke Pollution Across The United States

Fueled by unusually high temperatures, hundreds of wildfires are burning across Western Canada — and they’re sending their smoke south across the United States border. Wildfire danger throughout Western Canada is “very high,” according to the Canadian Wildland Fire Information System (CWFIS), with the majority of fire activity taking place in three provinces:...

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Nevada’s “Basin and Range” set to be protected permanently?

Just a couple hours’ drive from Las Vegas, the Basin and Range area comprises Garden Valley and Coal Valley as well as corridors connecting the surrounding Timpahute, Pahroc, Worthington, Mt. Irish, Seaman, Golden Gate, Grant and Quinn Canyon mountain ranges. Among other things, Basin and Range’s rugged landscape is considered a monument to the awesome span of geological...

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