In defense of the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument expansion

cnsm viewInterior Secretary Ryan ZInke has begun a controversial and scientifically incredulous review of 25 national monuments for possible reductions in protections, including the Cascade-Siskiyou National Monument in southwest Oregon and northern California. Geos Institute played a supportive science role in designation of the monument (as well as other national monuments) in 2000. We are now defending this monument from possible rollbacks of the Trump administration.

Read the letterRead the letter we sent to Mr. James Cason, Special Assistant, Delegated the Functions, Duties, and Responsibilities of the Deputy Secretary of the Interior. (photo: D. DellaSala)

Conservationists guardedly optimistic about funding to restore forests, coasts, and flood-prone areas

Bipartisan. Unanimous. Two words not heard often in contemporary politics describe a pair of bills passed by a divided Washington Legislature to revitalize forests in the face of climate change and megafires that have killed firefighters and cost the state many millions of dollars.

Now comes the real test: Will the Legislature provide the money needed to carry out these plans? The same can be said for two other young but high-profile efforts to restore Washington ecosystems in coastal and flood-prone areas. Most at risk is the restoration program for flood-prone regions, which could lose more than half of its funding under the Senate’s budget plan.

Continue reading at Investigate West

Guest Opinion: An appeal for a safe climate from a scientist and loving father

By Dominick DellaSala

family hikingThis Earth Day, I am giving thanks for the lingering effects of our cold-wet winter and the beautiful snow-capped mountains. Reservoirs are filling up, fisher-people are casting away in streams with hopes of bountiful catches, and kayakers are bucking the rapids again. We should all enjoy this wet winter that used to be the “norm,” while remembering that we have much work to do to make the climate safe for our children.

I would like to share my family’s story because it concerns all parents, hikers, hunters and other outdoor enthusiasts in the region.

Continue Reading

Earth Day 2017 Public Talk: Keeping Science Cool on a Warming Planet

Join us for a free public talk on the importance of science in combating climate change.

When: Saturday April 22, 2017 at 1pm (right after the Science March)

Where: Science Works Museum (1500 E. Main St, Ashland, OR)

Speaker: Dr. Dominick DellaSala, Chief Scientist of the Geos Institute and Director of the Forest Legacies Initiative

Continue Reading

Thinning forests aims to reduce fire risk

To restore a forest and reduce the risk of severe wildfires, a conservation group is cutting down trees.

The Nature Conservancy is selectively logging dry forests in Washington's Central Cascades as part of a long-term plan to make thousands of privately owned forestland more resilient to fire, disease and climate change.

A century of wildfire suppression has resulted in overgrown tree stands that are ripe for fire, so the group is weeding out smaller trees that can serve as kindling for fires. They're leaving bigger, older and more fire-resistant ponderosa pines while removing tree species such as grand fir that are more susceptible to fire.

Dominick DellaSala, chief scientist of the Geos Institute in Ashland, Oregon, said thinning that's done right can be a good tool but it's not the only one.

"I don't see it as a panacea and it should be strategically used to defend homes and lives and get into the truly flammable area," he said. Often missing from the equation is letting fires burn naturally under safe conditions, he added.

Keep reading the full article in U.S. News & World Report

Contribute

Please give generously today.

Donate Now

Initiative of
Geos Institute