Category: Nature

Betting on Biochar

Rather than entering the atmosphere as carbon dioxide, the carbon in biochar remains as a solid, sequestered and lined up for a host of further uses.

Less is More In Second Growth Forests

The towering old-growth forests of California’s Redwood National and State Parks attract thousands of visitors per year. But the once-logged and reseeded adjacent forests aren’t so healthy, prompting a restoration initiative.

Ordering the Path to Wildlife Resilience

Wildlife need wild pathways — corridors of trees, streams, meadows, or other habitat that allows them to move through a landscape increasingly fragmented by human alteration. And as climate change upends formerly stable patterns, wildlife’s need for corridors must also shift, often in complex ways, in order for each species and ecosystem to remain resilient.

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Betting on Biochar

Rather than entering the atmosphere as carbon dioxide, the carbon in biochar remains as a solid, sequestered and lined up for a host of further uses.

Burns for the Birds

Scientists examined islands of near-total deforestation after fires and found new landscapes born from the scorched earth. They also found birds hunting for seeds and insects in these new open areas…

Less is More In Second Growth Forests

The towering old-growth forests of California’s Redwood National and State Parks attract thousands of visitors per year. But the once-logged and reseeded adjacent forests aren’t so healthy, prompting a restoration initiative.

Ordering the Path to Wildlife Resilience

Wildlife need wild pathways — corridors of trees, streams, meadows, or other habitat that allows them to move through a landscape increasingly fragmented by human alteration. And as climate change upends formerly stable patterns, wildlife’s need for corridors must also shift, often in complex ways, in order for each species and ecosystem to remain resilient.

The Farm That Could

In 2019, Governor Newsom signed AB 1486 into law which connects developers interested in building more affordable homes with surplus public land suitable for housing. In the Bay Area, the housing crisis is nothing new. Using public land to create affordable housing is a step towards solving the crisis. However, taking Happy Lot Farm and Gardens land to service one need would also be squandering another need, in this case, urban farming in food deserts.

Fighting Wildfire with Cultural Fire

Melinda Adams talks about wildfire and cultural fire, an indigenous stewardship practice where you can actually “see the healing that happens afterward.” Adams is a Ph.D candidate at UC Davis.

Trees Tell A Tale of Two Cities

Trees do far more than add shade and property value to a city block; they can remove harmful pollutants from the air, reduce flooding, and perhaps most crucially in a changing climate, they can reduce heat. A 2019 investigation by NPR found that Oakland’s poorer neighborhoods are almost universally hotter than its richer regions (in fact, the city had one of the strongest correlations between heat and income in the country).

North Bay Towns Embrace Drought Gardens

The conundrums of whether or not to spend water on gardening during a drought are many. Growing backyard food is not just enjoyable, it also cuts down on greenhouse gasses from food transport and storage. Maintaining – or expanding – ornamental gardens is therapeutic but also can sustain pollinators and wildlife that are struggling to survive human-made hurdles.

Butterflies in Residence Hedge Against Climate Change?

While monarch butterfly numbers at traditional winter roosts on the California coast hit an all-time low of about 2000 last winter, citizen-science observers have noticed that some remain in the San Francisco Bay Area year-round. Biologists Elizabeth Crone (Tufts University) and Cheryl Schulz (Washington State University) estimate a resident population of 12,000 in northern and central California, extrapolating from a Berkeley survey.

Three Ways to Feed the Marsh

Seal Beach is drowning. As a result of sea-level rise, subsidence, and limited sediment supply, much of the 920-acre National Wildlife Refuge in Orange County can no longer keep its head above water. Pacific cordgrass, normally exposed at low tides, is being completely inundated. Rare nesting habitat for the endangered light-footed clapper rail is disappearing at high tides.

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