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Backyard avian maternity ward; memories of Mt. St. Helens

CRITTERS AND THE GREAT OUTDOORS

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Male Lazuli Bunting singing exuberantly.

giddy thing writes—Dawn Chorus: Bedazzling Blue Birds: “Last week, while driving my local backroads admiring the spring landscape, I caught a flash of brilliant turquoise that made me stomp on the brakes. About 30 yards out in a greening pasture, a male Lazuli Bunting lit on a stem, blue and gleaming as a semi-precious gemstone. […] The sight of that small blue songbird brought a moment of transcendence; the complete bliss, delight, and peace one feels when seeing a lake sparkling in the morning sun, or a field of blooming lupines, or the clear sky itself. Blue birds can have that effect — they’re both dazzling and restful to the eye and soul. Blue birds are relatively rare in North America, with only about 2% of species being predominantly blue in color. So when we spot a bird decked out in shades of lapis lazuli, indigo, turquoise, sapphire, or azurite, we really SEE it.”  

Nest, with eggs
Skilled home construction

RonK writes—The Daily Bucket: My yard as an Avian Maternity Ward: “Spring is the time of nature’s regeneration and my yard is no exception. Six bird species have been  active at some phase of the birthing process these past few weeks. The slowest are still nest building, others are well into the incubation process and will soon have gaping beaks sticking out of nests, begging for more food. In past years I’ve had a couple of birds nesting in the yard but never six one time that I recall. Some Bucketters will recall last year that I documented Northern Flickers and Glaucous-winged Gulls from nest building to fledging. I’ll spare you that for these six and just give a quick survey of how my aviary yard is coming along. Having been observing this nest building up close, I have come to further appreciate the various skills involved. Just acquiring the materials is no small feat as they collect twigs, branches, fur, feathers, moss, grass etc. Then, the weaving these various materials all together and some add mud to seal and secure the nest. And all this with no hands.” 

funningforrest writes—The Daily Bucket: Sucker Holes: “I can’t remember when I first heard the term ‘sucker hole’ but around my neck of the woods it means being fooled by a patch of blue sky in the clouds — you think it’s going to clear up (sucker!) so you go outside only to get heavily rained on two minutes later. Or, it could actually clear up, the day could turn beautiful, and then you’d end up with no excuse for not going outside.  But you’re not falling for no sucker hole, nosirree not me.  Ha ha.  Suckered again. I’m sure hoping it’s going to clear up today. I really want to get back to Dellinger’s Pond here in Quincy, CA, and see what’s up with the ducks and geese and frogs and such.”

ClimateDenierRoundup writes—For Deniers, One Dead Bald Eagle Is A Tragedy, Billions Are a Statistic: “As the Trump administration figures out sneaky ways to funnel coronavirus relief funding to the oil and gas industry, it’s also found a sneaky way to take money from wind and solar: a retroactive $50 million bill for rent for energy generated on public lands. While that’s certainly their biggest problem at the moment, the steady stream of attacks from the blogosphere haven’t let up either, for example with this post from anti-wind group Stop These Things: ‘State sanctioned slaughter: wind industry killing thousands of bald eagles with complete impunity. With a headline like that, one might expect to hear about how the government has made a policy of deputizing the wind industry for the sole purpose of killing bald eagles. Instead of anything that would even remotely justify the allegation of a state sanctioned slaughter of thousands of birds, the blog eventually gets to a story from the Toledo Blade about the death of one (1) single bald eagle, which was fatally struck after flying into the path of a turbine blade. Which, sure, is sad. And yes, wind farms can and should do what they can do reduce the risk of harming birds. But the death of one bird is hardly a slaughter of thousands by policy, a particularly egregious exaggeration given that according to the story, there are only 707 bald eagle nests in the whole state of Ohio.

CaptBLI writes—The Daily Bucket – Rude awakening: “There was a BOOM that rattled windows in the frame and nearly knocked me off the mattress at 3:25 am. May 22nd. The room was lit as if I had turned on the overhead fixture. Then, pitch black. Eyes can’t adjust to that speed of lightning.  The radar map above shows the storms that passed over Oxford and the other southern areas. If you haven’t had the pleasure (or horror) of experiencing chain (or sheet) lightning, you’re in for a shock when it hits. Here is what I saw in the sky that morning. The white streaks shot horizontally across the under side of the clouds. I would best describe the pattern as, spider webbed or shattered glass. It didn’t look as ‘hot’ as it should. Then a bolt would thrust downward, flicker, brighten, then fade. The sonic blasts came instantly.

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Great Blue Heron

6412093 writes—The Daily Bucket–The Robins Persist: “But just a day or two after Billy Heron, the patriarch of my back yard gardens and ponds left, Cocky Robin brushed aside the murmured objections from the littler birds, and mounted the Sacred Roof Arch for his own announcement. All of the little birds decided to play along. They felt bad for Cocky Robin and Myra, who’d set up their nest in the Arbor Vitae tree next to our garden in suburban Portland Oregon. All last summer the robins nested and gorged themselves on our worms, berries and grapes. But just when their eggs hatched, the crows swept through. I had watched last year as the Robins sat silently by my backyard pond,  pretending to ignore the crows.  The crows swept east through the robin’s nest, until the hawks massed at the golf course and forced the crows to split into their traditional north and south enclaves, into the second growth hardwoods along Rock Creek.” 

Dan Bacher writes—Lawsuit by Three Groups Challenges Federal Water Contracts Imperiling Delta, Fish, Wildlife: “In the latest lawsuit to contest Trump administration water policies, three environmental groups today sued the U.S. Bureau of Reclamation over the granting of permanent federal water contracts to water users supplied by the Central Valley Project (CVP). The lawsuit, brought by the Center for Biological Diversity, Restore the Delta and Planning and Conservation League, challenges the Trump administration’s moves to make permanent 14 existing short-term Central Valley Project contracts and ongoing work to convert dozens of others to permanent contracts. The Central Valley Project (CVP), one of the world’s largest water storage and delivery systems, includes 20 reservoirs, about 500 miles of canals and aqueducts and two pumping plants. The CVP exports massive quantities of water from the Delta to San Joaquin Valley agribusiness interests.” 

funningforrest writes—The Daily Bucket: (More) Dellinger’s Pond, Quincy, CA: “Thursday, May 21 inst. (don’t you just enjoy archaic grammar?).  The day opened with a heavy fog overcast but there were hopes for a clear and sunny day.  As morning progressed toward afternoon the sun did indeed gain ascendancy, the sky turned from ennui-inducing gray to irresistible azure blue, and the Sirens of the outdoors sang their overpowering song.  Rousing from his stupor the mighty Argonaut gathered his weapons…  oh, that’s enough, Forrest!  Get out of your La-Z-Boy, pause the Charlie Chan video, pack your nature-watching equipment, get on your bicycle and go see what the pond has to offer. So I did.”

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Dellinger’s Pond

CLIMATE CHAOS

AmericaAdapts writes—Dr. Michael Mann: The Climate Knight Rises – Australia Bushfires + Covid19 + Climate Denialism: “In episode 112 of America Adapts, Doug Parsons hosts for the third time, famed climatologist Dr. Michael Mann. Mike comes on to discuss his recent sabbatical in Sydney, Australia, just as the bushfires raged out of control. We discuss the conservative media in Australia and how the continent is uniquely susceptible to the impacts of climate change. We also discuss how the anti-science response to the Covid19 pandemic mirrors much of what he’s encountered in the climate denial movement. We also briefly discuss Michael Moore’s anti-green energy movie. Great conversation with the famed ‘hockey stick’ scientist!  

ClimateDenierRoundup writes—Heritage Foundation’s Nicolas Loris Plagiarizes an Absolute Idiot (Himself) In DumbGass Op-Eds: “Some might say that the only thing worse than being (deliberately) stupid is being lazy. Fortunately, we don’t have to decide, because deniers are both. Case in point: As you may recall, Nicolas Loris of the industry-funded Heritage Foundation, recently argued that harmful indoor air pollution from gas stoves is no reason to replace them with electric ones, because people can just cook on the back burner. While some might be embarrassed about defending a product by telling users to only use the half of it that’s so inconvenient it’s a synonym for procrastination and deprioritization, Loris was apparently so proud of this compelling argument that he made it again. But this time the stakes were a little higher, because instead of running as a blog, the backbench backburner argument was published in the Daily Star, Tucson, Arizona’s main paper. Aside from a new introduction, the pieces are practically identical. A comparison shows that some 60% of the content is the same in the two pieces.” 

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Pakalolo writes—Siberia’s record-breaking heat spreads across the Arctic kick-starting an early melt season: “There is no vaccine or hydroxychloroquine dosage that can stop an exceptional heating event happening in the Arctic. In Siberia, an intensifying heatwave threatens a disastrous melt season across the Arctic, once again. Summer is coming. We should brace ourselves for an ominous and dangerous summer of wildfire and powerful storms as intense ice melt and permafrost thaw threaten the Arctic and the entire world. In this country, we are truly alone. […] Brian Kahn writes in Earther: The Arctic has been on one recently. Russia had its hottest winter ever recorded, driven largely by Siberian heat. That heat hasn’t let up as the calendar turns to spring. In fact, it’s intensified and spread across the Arctic. Last month was the hottest April on record for the globe, driven by high Arctic temperatures that averaged an astounding 17 degrees Fahrenheit (9.4 degrees Celsius) above normal, according to NASA data.” 

DrLori writes—The Language of the Night: The Interdependency, Climate Crisis Edition: “If you’ve been around for the last few weeks, you know we’ve been talking around John Scalzi’s latest trilogy, The Interdependency. If you want to catch up, here are the previous installments: Part 1, Part 2, Part 3, and never mind the evanescent titles; I could not make up my mind. I wrote ‘talking around’ deliberately; since so many people haven’t yet read the final volume, The Last Emperox and since I don’t want to mar anyone’s reading pleasure, we’ve been talking about thematics and the larger issues that Scalzi raises in this series. In keeping with that ideal, I’m not doing much with plot; anyone who’s familiar with Scalzi’s writing knows that he’s fun and engaging and his plots are roller-coasters, and anyone who isn’t familiar with him should be, and I won’t spoil that. Or at least I’ll keep it as spoiler-free as possible.”

Extreme Weather & Natural Phenomena

OceanDiver writes—The Daily Bucket – 40 years ago today: BOOM: “It’s been 40 years since Mt St Helens blew up. For those of us who lived in the Pacific Northwest at the time, that’s a day we remember, and we can answer the question:Where were you at 8:32 a.m. on Sunday, May 18, 1980? I was living in south Snohomish county, about 150 miles north of the volcano. That morning, I was outside the house, it being a nice day, jiggling my restless two-month-old new baby while my 2-year old toddler slept inside. It was a quiet Sunday morning, and then I heard — no, more like felt —  a very deep boom. I thought maybe somebody was firing off some explosive in the area. Granted, there had been news reports of geologic activity at St Helens during the preceding couple of months: earthquake swarms, steam and ash ejections, and a big bulge on the north side, alarming enough for Gov Dixie Lee Ray to declare the mountain off limits. But Mount St Helens —  or Lawetlat’la, the Smoking Mountain as the local Cowlitz people directly to the west call it —  hadn’t erupted for over a century, and previous eruptions had hundreds or thousands of years between significant explosions. At the time I heard the boom, quite honestly I didn’t even make the connection. But by afternoon I was hearing news reports what was happening — aha! Remember, this was in the era before the internet, and news didn’t travel very fast.” 

ECO-ACTION & ECO JUSTICE

ClimateDenierRoundup writes—While Greta Set Up a Foundation, Anti-Greta Naomi Seibt Gets Fined, Starts Patreon: “Recently, deniers absolutely lost their shit when CNN put Greta Thunberg on a panel about coronavirus, hope and fear, to talk about the importance of listening to experts. They also attacked her for the recent news that she’s started her own foundation to give away the monetary prizes she’s won for her activism, including some coronavirus relief efforts specifically targeting at-risk youth. But you probably saw that already. What you probably haven’t seen, is what’s new with the anti-Greta Naomi Seibt. Where Greta has built something to help lift up others, Seibt has gone in the other direction, with the launch of a new Patreon account, so that people can just pay her a €59/month subscription for her videos and ‘writing/journalism.’ Writing at JunkScience (Steve Milloy’s website, borne of early efforts to defend the fossil fuel industry) Christopher Monckton, the longtime climate denier, who once called for rounding up everyone who was HIV positive and quarantining them for life (seriously), explained that Seibt is in dire need of financial help because her YouTube channel was demonetized, and worse, she has been fined of about $400 dollars by the local Media Authority for promoting the Heartland Institute and attacking climate policies.” 

CANDIDATES, STATE AND DC ECO-RELATED POLITICS

Dan Bacher writes—Labor and Environmental Groups Ask Governor, Legislators to ‘Protect People and Not Polluters’: “This morning a coalition of 100 labor and environmental groups sent a letter asking California Governor Gavin Newsom and California State Legislators to “protect people and not polluters” during this unprecedented coronavirus pandemic. The letter was issued at time when Newsom has showed increasing signs of caving to the fossil fuel industry. As oil prices crashed to below zero at one point and dozens of oil tankers idled off the California coast, new oil and gas drilling permits increased 7.8 percent under Governor Gavin Newsom during the first quarter of 2020 through April 4 as compared to the first quarter of 2019, according to a report issued by Consumer Watchdog and the Fractracker Alliance on May 7. In addition, California’s Geological Energy Management Division (CalGEM) has indicated they will roll back regulatory requirements for the testing and cleanup of oil wells in the state:  https://www.kqed.org/news/11817384/with-oil-industry-in-slump-state-offers-a-break-on-some-well-regulations.

ENERGY

Fossil Fuels & Emissions Controls

Dan Bacher writes—Consumer Watchdog: No New Wells Without Oil Company Bonding For Permits: “Consumer Watchdog called upon Governor Gavin Newsom to prevent oil companies from receiving approvals for new oil wells without first requiring full bonding for their clean-ups, according to a press release from the group today. In a letter to the governor, the consumer group pointed to the impending bankruptcy of oil drillers as oil prices bottom out as the reason for the Governor to demand that the companies put up before they drill down. It also cited the billions that the state needed to close and clean up wells that oil companies have yet to pay for. ‘Given the state’s grave deficit, it’s imperative that no new wells be approved without full bonding for their clean-up and a requirement to plug a certain number of idle wells in exchange for a new permit,’ the letter said. The letter took issue with state oil regulators who just gave oil companies a reprieve on paying fees and submitting plans to manage environmentally damaging idle wells.

Dan Bacher writes—Stop New Oil & Gas Drilling in Contra Costa County in the Delta: Comments due by June 9! “When we think of the fossil fuel industry in Contra Costa County, what probably comes to mind is coal export (Richmond) or oil refining (Richmond and the rest of the county).  Contra Costa County hosts four of the five Bay Area refineries that make up the second largest refining center on the West Coast.  But it is also the eighth largest center of oil and gas extraction in the state, right after Santa Barbara and just before San Luis Obispo. In light of this history, perhaps it’s not surprising that the County just reviewed a brand new application for exploratory drilling in unincorporated Brentwood—and found it good.  A county planner has done a perfunctory environmental review of the proposal for three exploratory oil and gas wells and a permanent well if “commercial quantities” are found, along with a gas pipeline extending under the city of Antioch.  The County and intends to issue, pending public comment, and in the parlance of the California Environmental Quality Act (CEQA), a ‘negative declaration.’  In other words, nothing to look at here, folks, move along:  more oil and gas drilling will have absolutely no negative impacts on public health or climate.”

skralyx writes—The U.S. coal industry is rapidly dying, and it will never recover: “One of Donald Trump’s keys to “making America great again” was bringing back the coal industry. Not so much for the coal or for the workers, but because it was a symbol. One of turning back the clock to an America where you could dump all the chemicals you wanted, where you could keep the minorities down, and where a man could grab what he wanted to grab and not be given any trouble about it. ‘Dig coal!’ they’d shout at the rallies. But in truth, America is digging coal’s grave. There are plenty of numbers out there to be cited, but perhaps the easiest way to grasp the trend is with a map. Carbon Brief has a great worldwide interactive map of coal-burning power plants, and I’ve taken the last complete map (2019) and compared that to the one from ten years ago (2010). The width of each dot represents capacity, and one dot usually means one physical unit, but in some cases more than one.  If you can’t see the legend, yellow is operating, white is closing, orange is new, pink is under construction, and purple is planned.” 

Renewables, Efficiency, Energy Storage & Conservation

Mokurai writes—Renewable Monday: Further Divestment in Norway: “We have a new source to draw on for Renewable news and action, including Norway today. I have contacted Charlie to see how we can cooperate. Coal, peat, divestment, oil, EVs (especially Tesla), solar panels on gas stations, storage in Hawai’i, nuclear sludge—Wait. What? Is this like iron-hulled sailing ships?Romanian Oil Company Powers Its Gas Stations With Solar PanelsQuora: Renewable Charlie. Renewable energy, electric transport, battery technology, lefty politics, etc. Thanks for this, Charlie. Norwegian Sovereign Wealth Fund Divests Itself Of Climate-Destroying Stocks Worth $3 Billion.”

Mokurai writes—Renewable Wednesday: Indonesia Gets With the Program: “Another conversion in government policy. There is much more renewable energy in this year’s plan, to be achieved much sooner than previously thought, on more than 9,000 inhabited islands. Wind, solar, geothermal, hydro, wave, tide, storage…Regulatory changes pave the C&I wayA growing number of companies in Indonesia, particularly multinationals that implement green policies or are listed as RE100 participants, are poised to adopt rooftop PV. Regulatory changes and signals from the country’s previous government, which supported coal, are paving the way for significant growth. Indonesia should put more energy into renewable power.  Aug 19, 2019. In fact, Indonesia has the potential to generate 788,000 megawatts (MW) of power from renewable energy sources such as wind, solar, tidal, and geothermal. This is more than 14 times the country’s current electricity consumption. Indonesia’s electricity needs are predicted to grow by around 7% every year until 2027.” 

Mokurai writes—Renewable Friday: Renewables Eclipse Coal in US: “The targets become ever more tempting as they age out and become ever more financially ruinous for their owners. Which ones are they working on where you are? Are we having fun yet? In a First, Renewable Energy Is Poised to Eclipse Coal in U.S. […] The United States is on track to produce more electricity this year from renewable power than from coal for the first time on record, new government projections show, a transformation partly driven by the coronavirus pandemic, with profound implications in the fight against climate change. It is a milestone that seemed all but unthinkable a decade ago, when coal was so dominant that it provided nearly half the nation’s electricity. And it comes despite the Trump administration’s three-year push to try to revive the ailing industry by weakening pollution rules on coal-burning power plants.” 

Mokurai writes—Renewable Saturday: 1 GW of Solar for Myanmar: “Myanmar has been a focus for serious Bad News for decades, and is by no means over its legacy of racist oppression. But they are making progress, now that they can. They had one solar installation last year, and none for wind, but those days are over. Myanmar launches 1 GW solar tender — PV Magazine. The country’s Ministry of Electricity and Energy is seeking proposals for 30 large-scale solar plants. The selected developers will be awarded 20-year power purchase agreements. Myanmar’s Ministry of Electricity and Energy (MOEE) has issued an invitation for PV developers to submit prequalifying bids for the construction of several solar plants throughout the country, with a combined capacity of 1 GW. The document, which was published on the MOEE’s Facebook page, states that the selected independent power producers will be awarded 20-year power purchase agreements. Overall, 30 solar facilities with capacities ranging from 30 MW to 40 MW are expected to be built through the tender.” 

mettle fatigue writes—More public utility solar power at record low cost coming for New Mexico & west Texas: “The New Mexico Public Regulatory Commission approved on Wednesday one solar and one solar-plus-storage project to serve El Paso Electric’s customers. […] Back in 2019, New Mexico state legislature joined Hawaii and California in approving a 2045 carbon-free goal, for power suppliers. This Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) includes an intermediate 2020 goal requiring 20% of the utility’s retail energy sales to be both renewable and economical. […] The Solar Energy Industries Association reported that New Mexico has about 905 MW of solar installed, with prices falling 38% over the last five years.” 

Pipelines & Other Oil  and Gas Transport

poopdogcomedy writes—Joe Biden Vows To Rescind Trump’s Permit Allowing The Keystone XL Pipeline To Cross Into The U.S.: “Joe Biden would rescind President Donald Trump’s permit allowing the Keystone XL oil pipeline to cross the border into the U.S., a move that would effectively kill the controversial project, his campaign told POLITICO on Monday. The statement is the first from Biden’s campaign about how the presumptive Democratic nominee would handle the project that has been stalled for over a decade if he wins the White House in November. Biden’s opposition also raises the stakes for the TC Energy’s efforts to start construction on the cross-border portion of the pipeline this year that would carry 830,000 barrels of crude oil from Canada to the U.S.” 

AGRICULTURE​, FOOD & GARDENS

mahdalgal writes—Saturday Morning Garden Blog V16:21 May 23, 2020 A Gardener’s Memorial Day Metaphor: “Rescuing forlorn plants is an obsession with just about every gardener I know  — from the $1 rack in the big box garden centers to the mistreated exterior displays at grocery stores. I could not resist a gangling, dry, starving fuchsia on the sale rack outside my local grocer two weeks ago. It was crying for help. This plant was wilted, leggy and lethargic yet still trying to bloom. It did its best to create long branches and small blooms, giving testimony to its hardy nature. It needed lots of help.  […] The fuchsia plant (Fuchsia triphylla) is a shrub discovered by a French monk in Hispaniola in 1697 and named after the German botanist Leonhart Fuchs, affirming its immigrant ancestry. Native to Central and South America, it loves humidity, just the right amount of fast draining water and thrives in full to part shade to part sun. This makes it a perfect planter specimen for Dallas’ humid May through mid September weather. It can survive as a perennial in zone 10 and as a tender perennial in zones 6-9 where it must be moved indoors for winter or it will freeze. It will not survive dry heat.” 

TRANSPORTATION & INFRASTRUCTURE

Mokurai writes—EV Tuesday: Tesla Wins Right to Restart Production: “Elon Musk claims that the fascists in Alameda County are bullying him by keeping his car plants closed, while the County is rather upset with Musk bullying them, and threatening to take all of his marbles elsewhere. We seem to have a compromise. Musk gets to reopen a Tesla factory, and the rest of us get to see him do it under some approximation of safety rules. […] Musk has been a vocal critic of government-issued guidance during the ongoing coronavirus pandemic. He’s called stay-at-home orders unconstitutional and fascist, and he’s risked imprisonment during the lockdown in order to reopen production. Officials in Alameda County, where the Fremont plant is based, said on May 13 that production at Tesla’s Fremont location could potentially resume this week — an exception to the county’s rules during the pandemic for ‘Minimum Business Operations,’ which mandate that businesses scale down operations to protect employees.”

OCEANS, WATER, DROUGHT

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The steelhead was caught in January on the American River.

Dan Bacher writes—GSSA wins court victory in court battle to save salmon, steelhead from increased Delta pumping: “On May 11, a federal judge ruled that a federal Bureau of Reclamation water diversion and pumping plan, lethal to Chinook salmon, Central Valley steelhead and other fish species in the Central Valley and Delta, must temporarily restrict water pumping from the Delta. United States District Judge Dale A. Drozd (DAD) ruled that ‘the harms are real, ongoing and are likely to have enough of a population level impact to warrant an injunction,’ as I reported here: www.dailykos.com/…  ‘The ruling comes in two cases, one brought by GSSA and allied groups and one brought by the state of California,’ according to a March 13 press release from the Golden State Salmon Association. ‘Both seek to overturn excessive water diversions by the Bureau of Reclamation because of the extreme environmental damage they are causing. The ruling resolves a portion of a motion for a preliminary injunction that GSSA and allies filed on March 5’.”

Dan Bacher writes—Senator Feinstein Introduces Bill to ‘Restore San Joaquin Valley Canals, Improve Water Supply‘: “Senator Dianne Feinstein (D-Calif.) today introduced the Restoration of Essential Conveyance Act, a bill to authorize $800 million in federal funding to repair critical canals in the San Joaquin Valley damaged by land sinking from overpumping of groundwater, known as subsidence, and for environmental restoration. If the canals are not restored to their original capacity, 20 percent of the farmland – approximately 1 million acres – might have to be retired in a region that produces $36 billion in crops annually, including a third of the nation’s produce. Representatives Jim Costa and TJ Cox (both D-Calif.) have introduced similar legislation in the House. ‘We have to find better ways to use the water we have,’ said Senator Feinstein. “Restoring the San Joaquin Valley’s canals is one of the most efficient ways to improve the sustainability of California’s water supply. It would allow us to capture more winter storm floodwaters and use that extra water to offset necessary reductions in groundwater pumping. This bill would give our farmers a fighting chance’.”

MISCELLANY

ClimateDenierRoundup writes—Environmental Journalists Shouldn’t Be “Fair And Balanced” When The President Is Fairly Unbalanced: “The Society of Environmental Journalists had a webinar last week with Columbia University’s Earth Institute that discussed how the Trump administration has ramped up efforts to take advantage of the COVID-19 pandemic to further roll back regulations to benefit polluters. Western Wire, the Western Energy Association’s blog, wrote about the event, and it’s actually worth the read, if you can get past the oil group’s feigned outrage of a tongue-in-cheek reference to the old Orwellian FoxNews tagline ‘fair and balanced’ not necessarily being part of journalists’ mission. One quote, from UCLA law professor Ann Carlson, stood out as particularly relevant right now. The Trump administration’s deregulatory efforts have been one of its few priorities, so they’ve rushed the revisions or rollbacks to the rules out the door at an impressive pace. But that may actually be their downfall. ‘It is true that they acted very speedily,’ Carlson said, but we must also remember ‘it is true that the wheels of justice roll slowly.’ And in fact, the administration’s haste will likely prove key to courts striking down many of these attempts to deregulate.” 

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