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Environment

Udall On Need To Extend LWCF At Valles Caldera

on September 5, 2015 - 11:56am

 Los Alamos Chamber of Commerce Manager Nancy Partridge, left, is among a group that gathered Friday with U.S. Sen. Tom Udall at the Valles Caldera National Preserve. Courtesy/Sen. Udall's Office

Sen. Tom Udall, second from right, and the group participate in a cookout. Courtesy/Sen. Udall's Office

U.S. SENATE News:

U.S. Sen. Tom Udall hosted a roundtable discussion Friday at the Valles Caldera National Preserve on the urgent need to extend the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) at the Valles Caldera.

He participated in a group discussion about the need to reauthorize and fully fund

NM Salmonella Outbreak Linked To Cucumbers

on September 5, 2015 - 10:51am

NMED News:

15 Cases Reported In New Mexico

SANTA FE The New Mexico Department of Health is investigating 15 confirmed cases of Salmonella Poona infection in New Mexico that appear to be linked to eating garden variety cucumbers grown in Mexico.

The department is working with the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the Food and Drug Administration (FDA), the New Mexico Environment Department, the Albuquerque Environmental Health Department, and multiple state health departments as a part of an ongoing investigation of 285 confirmed cases nationally from 27 states.

The

Rodent Causes Friday Power Outage

on September 5, 2015 - 10:37am

Rodents wreck havoc on electrical wires. Courtesy/americanpest.net

COUNTY News:

A rodent caused a power outage affecting 537 Department of Public Utilities customers late Friday morning.  

The outage began at approximately 10 a.m. when the animal got inside an electric switch cabinet at the Airport entrance and damaged a switch.

Parts of the Los Alamos business area on Trinity Drive blinked, while customers North of Central to Canyon and east toward the airport lost power for a longer duration of time.  Electric linemen were able to restore power by 10:22 a.m. to East Gate, Entrada and

Explore Southwest Desert Climbing Sept. 16

on September 5, 2015 - 10:01am
The magnificent Titan, greatest of all desert towers. For scale, at two-thirds height on the left skyline is a feature called 'the Duck' with an unknown climber visible to the right. Courtesy photo
 
LA MOUNTAINEERS News:

Join the Los Alamos Mountaineers at 7:30 p.m. Wednesday, Sept. 16 at Fuller Lodge in Los Alamos for an exciting presentation by Steve "Crusher" Bartlett, a desert climber extraordinaire!

Social time and reports of recent and upcoming trips take place at 7 p.m. with the program at 7:30 p.m. 

The Southwest features the most colorful landscapes in the world.

Labor Day Citizen Science Project: Yard Day Bird Count

on September 2, 2015 - 11:55am

Spotted Towhee. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

On Labor Day, Dave Yeamans, a long-time enthusiast of the natural world, is opening his home for a citizen science project, Big Yard Day Bird Count.

To participate, register at www.peecnature.org for the Big Yard Day and stop by Dave Yeaman’s house anytime between 6:30 a.m. and 6:30 p.m. “Everybody learns something and has fun or my job is not complete,” says Yeamans, who also is a caring host.

Participants are encouraged to wear natural-colored clothing, move gently, and whisper to improve the chances of seeing a wide variety of birds.

DOE Taps Todd Shrader To Lead Carlsbad Field Office

on September 2, 2015 - 7:31am

New Carlsbad Field Office Manager Todd Shrader, third from left, during a tour last November at Hanford with EM Office of River Protection Manager Kevin Smith, right, Waste Treatment and Immobilization Project Assistant Manager Bill Hamel, left and EM Acting Assistant Secretary Mark Whitney. Courtesy/DOE

WIPP News:

The Department of Energy (DOE) has announced the selection of Todd Shrader as the manager for the Carlsbad Field Office (CBFO).

“Todd Shrader is a proven leader and experienced engineer who has successfully tackled some of DOE’s toughest issues,” said Monica Regalbuto, Assistant

Pajarito Environmental Education Center Leads Efforts To Certify Los Alamos As A Community Wildlife Habitat

on September 1, 2015 - 6:38pm

PEEC Board members celebrating the certification of the nature center as a Wildlife Habitat, from left, Jeremy Campbell, Bob Walker, Jennifer Macke, Selvi Viswanathan, Esta Lee Albright, Michele Altherr, Nancy Arendt, Felicia Orth, Ann Shafer, Sue Watts, Mary Carol Williams, Becky Shankland, Talia Dreicer, Karla Sartor and Rebecca Oertel. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

A team of Pajarito Environmental Education Center volunteers is working to make Los Alamos the first certified Community Wildlife Habitat in New Mexico.

To date, our community consists of 126 backyards, four common areas, and

PEEC: September Night Sky Planetarium Shows

on September 1, 2015 - 7:44am

Night Sky Milky Way Galaxy Astrophotography from Wikimedia Commons by ForestWander. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

Do you want to know how to identify more of the planets and stars in the night sky?

Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) is holding star shows in the Los Alamos Nature Center planetarium at 1 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 5 and 2 p.m. Saturday, Sept. 12.

Each show will introduce celestial objects easily viewed through binoculars this month including planets, the lunar eclipse, star patterns, star clusters, nebulae, double stars, and other celestial objects.

The September Night

Los Alamos Arms Control Group Considers Support Of Iran Policy

on August 31, 2015 - 1:18pm
 
LACACIS News:
 
The Los Alamos Committee on Arms Control and International Security (LACACIS) is considering the adoption of a statement of support for the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA) between Iran and the US, UK, France, Russia, China, Germany, and the European Union.  
 
The LACACIS draft policy statement can be read by visiting www.lacacis.org and clicking on Policy Statements.  
 
The position will be discussed and voted on at a meeting at 7 p.m., Friday, Sept. 4, at the United Church Christian Education Building Lounge (room 212), 2525 Canyon Road.  
 
The public is invited, but

Holy Ghost Canyon Open For Labor Day Weekend; Expected To Close For Repairs Sept. 8

on August 31, 2015 - 1:12pm
SFNF News:
 
SANTA FE  The popular Holy Ghost Canyon on the east side of the Santa Fe National Forest will be open to recreationists over the upcoming Labor Day holiday weekend. 
 
On Tuesday, Sept. 8, the Forest expects to implement a closure order to protect public health and safety during the reconstruction of Forest Road (FR) 122, also known as Holy Ghost Road. 
 
FR 122 was severely damaged by flooding after the 2013 Tres Lagunas Fire.
 
The restricted area includes land within 500 yards on either side of FR 122 as well as recreation residences, the Holy Ghost campground and group site, and the

Private Well Water Precautions For San Juan County & Other Affected New Mexico Residents

on August 31, 2015 - 1:00pm
NMED News:
 
SANTA FE  Private domestic water well owners in San Juan County and other parts of New Mexico inundated by floodwater caused by recent heavy rain are being advised to take precautions.
 
Flood water can be tainted by sewage leaked by flooded septic systems, or other contaminants, and the floodwater can contaminate water wells.
 
For private domestic water well users whose wells have been inundated by the floodwater, the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) recommends the following actions:
 
1. The well water should be vigorously boiled for 5 minutes before use for drinking,

Meet Classic Air Medical At Los Alamos Nature Center

on August 31, 2015 - 8:59am

Classic Air Medical helicopter in flight. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

To live in Northern New Mexico is to be surrounded by rugged beauty. But what happens if you have a medical emergency when you're out exploring the wilderness?

Luckily Classic Air Medical, a helicopter medical transport service, is ready to help. At 7 p.m. Tuesday, at the Los Alamos Nature Center, 2600 Canyon Road, meet pilot Geoff Rodgers and the medical team to discuss the exciting work of this helicopter rescue company and how they work with the local community.

Rodgers is a former Los Alamos County councilor who

LANL: Capture Sunlight With Your Window

on August 30, 2015 - 9:05am

The luminescent solar concentrator could turn any window into a daytime power source.Courtesy/LANL

 

LANL News:

  • With integrated photovoltaics, quantum dot solar windows go non-toxic, colorless, with record efficiency

A luminescent solar concentrator is an emerging sunlight harvesting technology that has the potential to disrupt the way we think about energy; It could turn any window into a daytime power source.

“In these devices, a fraction of light transmitted through the window is absorbed by nanosized particles (semiconductor quantum dots) dispersed in a glass window, re-emitted at the

Cinema Cindy Reviews 'Love And Mercy'

on August 30, 2015 - 8:44am
By CYNTHIA BIDDLECOMB
Los Alamos

“Love and Mercy” is an intense bio-pic about Brian Wilson, the genius behind the 1960s band the Beach Boys, and his downward spiral into mental illness.

Rated PG-13 “for thematic elements, drug content and language,” “Love and Mercy” is not light fare. Its focus on mental health, abusive therapists and parents requires of the audience a strong and merciful heart. However, the story is historically informative and courageous.

 

Movie poster for 'Love and Mercy.' Courtesy/Reel Deal Theater

John Cusack plays a mentally and emotionally oppressed Brian in the

Udall Welcomes Committee On Indian Affairs Oversight Hearing On Gold King Mine Disaster

on August 29, 2015 - 8:27am

Sen. Tom Udall

U.S. SENATE News:

WASHINGTON, D.C. -- Sen. Tom Udall welcomed an announcement by Sen. John Barrasso of Wyoming,chairman of the Senate Committee on Indian Affairs (SCIA), that the committee will hold an oversight hearing to examine the harmful impacts of the Environmental Protection Agency's (EPA) Gold King Mine spill on Indian Country.

Udall and fellow committee member Sen. John McCain of Arizona, wrote a letter earlier this month to Barrasso and SCIA Vice Chairman Jon Tester of Montana requesting the hearing.

The hearing, titled “EPA’s Gold King Mine Disaster: Examining

NMED, State Engineer, RMSC Win Injunction

on August 28, 2015 - 8:49am

NMED News:

Santa Fe – Today, Gov. Susana Martinez’s executive agencies - the New Mexico Environment Department (NMED) and the Office of the State Engineer (OSE) - along with 12 other co-plaintiff states (States) prevailed in their motion to block the Aug. 28 implementation of the Waters of the United States (WOTUS) rule promulgated by the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the Army Corps of Engineers (Corps). 

Chief Judge Ralph Erickson granted the States’ Motion for Preliminary Injunction in the U.S.

Game Commission Votes 7-0 For Cougar Trapping

on August 27, 2015 - 4:01pm

New Mexico Game Commission votes to endorse the NMDGF recommendations to drastically expand trapping, snaring and killing cougar across New Mexico. Courtesy/APNM

APNM News:

SANTA FE – Today, the New Mexico Game Commission voted to endorse the New Mexico Department of Game & Fish’s (NMDGF) extreme recommendations to drastically expand trapping, snaring, and killing across New Mexico as part of revisions to the 2016 Bear & Cougar Rule.

By a unanimous vote, the Game Commission endorsed the NMDGF proposals to:

  • allow cougar trapping using leg-hold traps and snares on state trust lands,

Nature Center's Fourth Friday Fractal Show Cancelled

on August 27, 2015 - 11:01am
PEEC News:

The Los Alamos Nature Center's Fourth Friday Fractal show scheduled for Friday, Aug. 28 has been cancelled.

The Pajarito Environmental Education Center will start monthly fractal shows beginning Sept. 25 in the Los Alamos Nature Center's Planetarium.

Council Recognizes Los Alamos Co+op Market As 2015 Business Recycler Of The Year

on August 25, 2015 - 6:46pm

Environmental Services Manager Angelica Gurule and Public Works Director Philo Shelton recognize the  Los Alamos Co+op Market as the 2015 Los Alamos County Business Recycler of the Year and present Co+op Board President Tracy McFarland with the award. This is the second time the Co+op has received this award. Print Screen/LADP

Staff Report

The County Council this evening recognized the Los Alamos Co+op Market as the 2015 Los Alamos County Business Recycler of the Year.

Public Works Director Philo Shelton Environmental Services Manager Angelica Gurule presented the award to Los Alamos

Luján And DeGette Call For Oversight Hearing On Spill

on August 25, 2015 - 11:12am
CONGRESSIONAL News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  Representatives Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico and Diana DeGette of Colorado have called for an oversight hearing on the Gold King Mine spill that released 3 million gallons of wastewater into the Animas and San Juan Rivers. 
 
Both members serve on the Energy and Commerce Committee, and Rep. DeGette is Ranking Member on the Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee.
 
The lawmakers sent a letter to Energy and Commerce Committee Chairman Fred Upton and Oversight and Investigations Subcommittee Chairman Tim Murphy requesting the hearing.
 
“The EPA’s Office of

Advocates Call To Reform Federal Coal Lease Program

on August 24, 2015 - 1:29pm
BLM News:
 
DENVER  Thursday, Aug. 20, nearly one hundred New Mexicans representing over a dozen organizations gathered at a session hosted by the Bureau of Land Management to testify in support of reforming the outdated federal coal lease program.
 
"Coal mining and coal fired power plants have had devastating impacts on the Navajo Nation for over 50 years,” said Colleen Cooley, energy outreach coordinator of Dinè Care.

Seed Harvesting Hikes Begin Friday

on August 24, 2015 - 9:46am

Seed collection volunteers. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

Since the Las Conchas Fire, many areas of the Pajarito Plateau are in stream channel stabilization and floodplain restoration. To help in this effort, join Chick Keller to collect grass seeds and look at other interesting native plants.

These seeds will be used next spring in the post-fire restoration project along Frijoles Creek near the Visitor Center in Bandelier National Monument.

Learn About Hidden Treasures Of Mesa Prieta Tuesday

on August 24, 2015 - 9:32am

Mesa Prieta Petroglyph. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

Which site has 50,000 volunteer-logged petroglyphs? What is the largest petroglyph site in North America? The answer to both of these questions is Mesa Prieta, an amazing archaeological treasure just in our own backyard.

To learn more about this fascinating area and unique nonprofit, come hear Katherine Wells, founder of Mesa Prieta Petroglyph Project, discuss her work at 7 p.m., Tuesday at the Los Alamos Nature Center, 2600 Canyon Road. It is free to attend, and no registration is required.

Wells will show petroglyphs from the Archaic,

Upper Gold King Mine Spill Still Not Cleaned Up

on August 23, 2015 - 12:22pm
Mine Wastes on Animas River bank rocks in Durango Aug. 14, 2015. Courtesy/Dr. Jack Nyhan
 
 
By Dr. JACK NYHAN
Independent Environmental Scientist
Northern New Mexico

The ghost town of Gladstone is found in one of the most stunningly beautiful areas of the San Juan Mountains in Colorado, located at the head of Cement Creek about 6 miles north of Silverton. 

Proceeding south along the Animas River from Silver City leads to the most beautiful farmland in all of Colorado and New Mexico adjacent to the Animas River.

SFNF Releases Final EIS For Southwest Jemez Mountains Landscape Restoration Project

on August 22, 2015 - 8:24am

SFNF News:

SANTA FE – The Santa Fe National Forest (SFNF) announced the release of the Final Environmental Impact Statement (FEIS) and draft Record of Decision (ROD) for one of the largest forest restoration projects in the Southwest.

The Southwest Jemez Mountains (SWJM) Landscape Restoration Project is a long-term collaborative effort to restore forest ecosystems at the landscape scale and improve resilience to major disturbances, including fire, insects and disease, and climate change. 

SFNF Supervisor Maria T.

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