The Chestnut is coming back

… but it will take a while. Back in 1900 there were billions of Chestnut trees in the US. Then, over 50 years, they died off, victims of a fungal blight. New trees would grow from the roots of the old, only to succumb themselves. But a few survived. And now it looks like scientists have managed to breed a resistant version. Next year 500 will be planted in Pennsylvania’s Westmoreland County.

5-26-2011a - Chestnut Tree in Bloom

Say goodbye to the Peel Watershed of the Yukon

The new government of Canada’s Yukon territory is (most likely illegally) ignoring a 2011 agreement on how to treat the Peel Watershed. The watershed is 77,000 km2, of which some 67,000 are in the Yukon. The indigenous people have been fighting with the mining industry over land use. In 2011 the Peel Compromise set aside 80% as protected wilderness, with the other 20% open to mining.

The new government is very pro-mining, and feels that the agreement is null and void now that they have been elected. They are changing the 80% to 29%, with the other 71% open to mining.

This actually ties in with what I’ve been teaching my 6th graders. We just learned that the 3 main uses people have for land is agriculture, mining, and development. I’ll be bringing this up in class tomorrow.