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Environment

Udall, Heinrich Welcome President's Proposal To Fully Fund Land And Water Conservation Fund

on February 9, 2016 - 7:34am
SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON D.C. — U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich applauded President Obama's announcement that he will work to fully fund the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF), an innovative conservation program that has helped to preserve public lands, create and expand city parks, and provide access to outdoor recreation across the New Mexico and the nation.
 
Funding through the LWCF has helped conserve special places from the Valle de Oro National Wildlife Refuge in Bernalillo County to the Organ Mountains Desert Peaks and Rio Grande del Norte national monuments in Southern

Tuesday Is Family Night At Nature Center

on February 8, 2016 - 8:57am
Previous Family Night at the Nature Center. Courtesy photo

PEEC News:

Tuesday, Feb. 9 is Family Night at the Los Alamos Nature Center. Learn about geology through stories and music 6-7 p.m. with Mesa Public Library’s Melissa Mackey. The Nature Center will be open until 8 p.m. for exploring exhibits.

This program is free to attend thanks to a generous sponsorship from Kiwanis Club of Los Alamos.

For more information about this and other programs offered by PEEC at the Nature Center, visit www.peecnature.org, email programs@peecnature.org or call 505.662.0460.

Udall, Heinrich, Luján Welcome Partnership To Allow Public Access To The Sabinoso Wilderness

on February 7, 2016 - 7:28am
SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján welcomed a partnership between the Wyss Foundation and the Wilderness Land Trust to open up the Sabinoso Wilderness for public access.
 
Created in 2009 through legislation championed by Udall, Heinirch, Luján and former Senator Jeff Bingaman, the Sabinoso Wilderness is currently surrounded by private land and therefore inaccessible without trespassing on private property.
 
That will soon change thanks to a $3,150,000 contribution from the Wyss Foundation to allow the Wilderness Land Trust

Gardening Class At Los Alamos Nature Center

on February 6, 2016 - 8:49am

Natali Steinberg will teach gardening from seed in a 2-part class at PEEC. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

While it may seem early to start thinking about summer gardening, now is the perfect time to begin planting seeds indoors, which will extend the growing season.

In a two-part class at the Los Alamos Nature Center, Natali Steinberg will teach everything needed to start growing veggies and annuals from seed. The class meets 1:30-3:30 p.m. Sundays, Feb. 21 and March 13.

These classes will teach how to read a seed catalog and seed packet, equipment needed to start seeds indoors, how to

Wildlife Art Class At Nature Center Feb. 17

on February 5, 2016 - 10:04am
Raven by Lisa Coddington
 
PEEC News:
 
Pajarito Environmental Education Center (PEEC) is offering another way to connect with nature, through art. Lisa Coddington is teaching a wildlife drawing class from 10 a.m. to 2​ p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 17, at the Los Alamos Nature Center.
 
Participants will sketch animal specimens using different drawing techniques. Lisa will review foundational drawing skills and reinforce how to develop forms with light and shadow. She will also demonstrate a variety of techniques including graphite, charcoal, and watercolor washes.

Steinborn Seeks More Solar Power On State Buildings

on February 4, 2016 - 12:36pm
Rep. Jeff Steinborn
 
STATE News:
 
SANTA FE  Rep. Jeff Steinborn has teamed up with a bi-partisan group of legislators to introduce legislation exploring the idea of putting solar power on more state buildings.
 
House Memorial 51 directs the General Services Department (GSD) to work with the state Energy, Minerals, and Natural Resources Department (EMNRD) and the solar industry to “evaluate the potential energy and cost savings for expanding the use of solar power in state facilities.”
 
The General Services Department is the central clearinghouse for state government, providing office space,

PEEC Amateur Naturalist: A Winter Snapshot Of Birds

on February 4, 2016 - 12:35pm
PEEC Amateur Naturalist
By ROBERT DRYJA

 

A Winter Snapshot of Birds
 
The Audubon Society has been conducting a nationwide bird count at various locations every year for 116 years.
 
This count is called the Christmas Bird Count since it is conducted in December. Learn about participating here.
 
Nationwide, approximately 22,000,000 birds have been counted in 875 areas for 2015 and data still is being submitted. Sixty four people counted 4,770 birds representing 76 species throughout the Los Alamos area this year.
 
The Los Alamos area was divided in 53 sections and the people counted birds in 35 of

Lecture: 'Hydrogen – The Silver Bullet' Saturday

on February 4, 2016 - 10:08am
Roy M. Moore
 
COMMUNITY News:
 
The public is invited to attend a lecture on hydrogen energy, with speaker Roy M. Moore, 2-3:15 p.m., Saturday, Feb. 6, in the three upstairs meeting rooms of the Mesa Public Library in Los Alamos.
 
Moore will discuss the basics on how hyrdrogen energy works; how many forms of energy can be converted into hydrogen; as well as the political and environmental implications of the necessity for hydrogen energy to be implemented world-wide.
 
The public is welcome to film or photograph this event.

From Earth To The Universe Returns To Planetarium

on February 4, 2016 - 9:12am

A still from ESO's planetarium show - From Earth to the Universe - showing the Helix Nebula, also known as NGC 7293. Courtesy/T. Matsopoulos, ESO

PEEC News:

Enjoy stunning imagery from space as part of a full-dome feature film, From Earth to the Universe, playing in the Los Alamos Nature Center Planetarium at 2 p.m. Saturday and Sunday, Feb. 6 and 7.

This full-dome feature film takes passengers on a voyage through space and time. Along the way, adventurers will visit birthplaces and burial grounds of stars and explore beyond the Milky Way.

Tickets may be purchased by phone or at the Los

Bandelier Turns 100; Friends Of Bandelier Funding Drive Kicks Off With Goal Of $100,000

on February 4, 2016 - 8:51am

The Bandelier Youth Preservation Program worked on preserving the walls at Tyounyi Pueblo in the summer of 2015. Courtesy/BNM

BANDELIER News:

Bandelier National Monument shares an important birthday with the National Park Service this year – both are turning 100.

The 100th anniversary of the establishment of Bandelier takesplace Feb. 11 this year.

Respiratory Protection Requirements Reduced In Parts Of WIPP Underground

on February 2, 2016 - 8:54am
The yellow highlighted area in the drawing depicts the general area where respiratory protection requirements were lifted this week. Courtey photo
 
WIPP News:
 
As a result of radiological risk mitigation efforts by WIPP Radiological Control teams, this week requirements for respiratory protection were lifted for a significant portion of the WIPP underground.
 
The change in respiratory protection requirements applies to all areas south of S-2520 and represents a significant milestone in the contamination mitigation efforts.

Udall Introduces Amendment To Give All Americans An Opportunity To Invest In Clean Energy Future

on February 2, 2016 - 7:32am
U.S. Sen. Tom Udall
 
SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON D.C.  U.S. Sen. Tom Udall announced an amendment that he has filed to energy legislation that would ultimately enable all Americans to buy Clean Energy Victory Bonds, allowing regular people across the country to do their part to invest in our nation's clean energy future.
 
Modeled after war bonds, which raised billions of dollars during World War I and World War II, Clean Energy Victory Bonds would help local, state and federal governments raise billions of dollars in capital that they could then invest in building clean energy infrastructure —

Moniz To Discuss Nuclear Non-Proliferation And Iran Deal At Wilson Center

on February 1, 2016 - 8:45pm
DOE News:
 
WASHINGTON D.C.,  U.S. Secretary of Energy Ernest Moniz will participate in a Director’s Forum 11 a.m. to noon Tuesday at the Ronald Reagan Building and International Trade Center Auditoriumin in Washington, D.C. on the importance of nuclear non-proliferation and the Joint Comprehensive Plan of Action (JCPOA).
 
Last month, after years of negotiations and months of preparations for the implementation of the JCPOA, the International Atomic Energy Agency (IAEA) certified that Iran had completed all of the required nuclear steps to reach Implementation Day, and as a result, the

Roads Are Slick - LAPD Urges Motorists To Use Caution

on February 1, 2016 - 11:08am

LAPD News:

The Los Alamos Police Department issued an advisory this morning that while all roads around the County are open ... ice, slush and snow remain in certain areas.

LAPD urges drivers to use caution while traveling during winter weather conditions.

UNM-LA Has Closed Today Due To Winter Storm

on February 1, 2016 - 11:00am

UNM-LA News:

UNM-Los Alamos closed at 10 a.m. today due to the winter storm.

The National Weather Service has issued a winter storm warning in effect through 5 a.m. Tuesday.

NWS Issues Winter Storm Warning Through Tuesday

on February 1, 2016 - 10:47am

Morning snow settles on the branches of this tree on Walnut Street in Los Alamos. Photo by Chris Clark/ladailypost.com

NWS News:

URGENT - WINTER WEATHER MESSAGE ISSUED FROM THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN ALBUQUERQUE:
 
A STRONG UPPER LEVEL LOW PRESSURE SYSTEM AND ASSOCIATED COLD FRONT IS PASSING OVER NORTHERN AND CENTRAL NEW MEXICO TODAY AND TONIGHT. EXPECT HEAVY SNOW AND BLOWING SNOW THROUGH TONIGHT ...
 
SIGNIFICANT SNOW ACCUMULATIONS ARE EXPECTED FOR THE NORTHERN MOUNTAINS WITH LESSER AMOUNTS OVER THE WESTERN HIGHER TERRAIN AND THE SANDIA/MANZANO MOUNTAINS.

Defense Nuclear Facility Safety Board Eyes Area G

on January 31, 2016 - 12:53pm

Canisters with profiles similar to the one that erupted at WIPP are kept in LANL's Dome 375 at Area G in a controlled environment under careful surveillance. Courtesy/DOE
 
By ROGER SNODGRASS
Los Alamos Daily Post

The Defense Nuclear Facility Safety Board plans to perform a comprehensive review of emergency preparedness and response programs at Los Alamos National Laboratory in the next few weeks.

“We’ve been informed by the DNFSB that they’re planning on holding some hearings out here sometime in the March time frame associated with Area G,” said Doug Hintze, Environmental Management

Bandelier Backcountry Trails Talk At Nature Center

on January 31, 2016 - 10:18am
Bandelier at dawn. Courtesy/PEEC
 
PEEC News:

Trail work leader Kevin Stillman at Bandelier National Monument will present a talk detailing where to find water, the best places to camp and the things to see in Bandelier’s extensive backcountry.

Stillman's talk is 7 p.m. Tuesday, Feb. 2 at the Los Alamos Nature Center at 2600 Canyon Road. It is free to attend and no registration is required.
 
For more information about this and other PEEC programs, visit www.peecnature.org, email programs@peecnature.org or call 505.662.0460.

Major Archaeology Site Near Santa Fe Debuts Website

on January 31, 2016 - 8:07am

The Arroyo Hondo Pueblo project resulted in several Master’s theses and doctoral dissertations as well as nine published monographs covering various aspects of the research. Courtesy photo

Extensive archaeological research at Arroyo Hondo Pueblo. Courtesy photo

SAR News:

  • Photographs, history and research on Arroyo Hondo website

SANTA FE – About 1300 C.E., a small pueblo just minutes south of present day Santa Fe, rapidly transformed from a 100-room hamlet to a 1,000-room pueblo boomtown.

Extensive archaeological research at Arroyo Hondo Pueblo, directed by Douglas Schwartz, disclosed

Moon Was Produced By Head-on Collision Between Earth And A Forming Planet

on January 30, 2016 - 10:16am

Paul Warren, Edward Young (holding sample of a rock from the moon) and Issaku Kohl. Photo by Christelle Snow/UCLA

UCLA News:

  • UCLA-led research reconstructs massive crash, which took place 4.5 billion years ago

The moon was formed by a violent, head-on collision between the early Earth and a “planetary embryo” called Theia approximately 100 million years after the Earth formed, UCLA geochemists and colleagues report.

Scientists had already known about this high-speed crash, which occurred almost 4.5 billion years ago, but many thought the Earth collided with Theia (pronounced THAY-eh) at

Community Seed Swap Sunday Feb. 7 & 14

on January 29, 2016 - 9:25am

Courtesy/UCLA

UCLA News:

The Unitarian Church of Los Alamos is hosting its annual community seed swap.

The swap is 9 a.m. to noon, Sunday Feb. 7 and 14, at the church at 195 East Road, Suite 101.

Remember:

  • Bring only packets of seeds you wish to give away entirely. You may not get any back!
  • Take only enough seeds to use in one growing season.
  • If you are sharing seeds you’ve saved from your garden, please mark them clearly with the name of the plant and the year from which they were saved.

Participation is FREE. For more information, contact the church office at 505.662.2346, or email

TALES OF OUR TIMES: Prosperity Builds On Regulation

on January 29, 2016 - 7:46am

Tales of Our Times
By JOHN BARTLIT
New Mexico Citizens
for Clean Air & Water

Prosperity Builds On Regulation

A popular sound bite says “kill regulation” so prosperity will rise. Regulation is likened to a stalking horse brought out to snatch away property rights. Yet in history, property rights are created by regulation. Why do these stories sound so conflicting?

As usual, the message heard depends on which scraps of the whole story are told. Huge amounts are left out in boosting policy preferences.        

The pride of our nation is the rule of law. “Rule” means regulation.

Udall, Heinrich, Luján Announce Selection Of Valles Caldera, Bandelier For National Park Service Centennial Challenge Project

on January 28, 2016 - 4:12pm

Sen. Tom Udall in September at the Valles Caldera. Courtesy/jemezdailypost.com

CONGRESSIONAL DELEGATION News:

  • Funding award will engage Tribal youth in forest restoration, public lands preservation 

WASHINGTON, D.C. – Today, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján announced that the Valles Caldera National Preserve and Bandelier National Monument have been selected to participate in the National Park Service Centennial Challenge Project.

The National Park Service (NPS) has selected 69 projects at 63 parks nationwide to highlight during its centennial

Sea Monsters At Nature Center Saturday & Sunday

on January 28, 2016 - 8:07am

For more information, click here.

Café Scientifique Launching Two-Part Series About Mars

on January 28, 2016 - 7:01am
TSCN News:
 
Café Scientifique, New Mexico’s portion of the Teen Science Café Network, is gearing up for a two-part series of cafés about Mars.
 
The first café is 7 p.m., Feb. 2 at the YMCA Teen Center in Los Alamos. The second café is 7 p.m., Feb. 23 in Taos at the Mural Room of the old county courthouse and will be presented on Human Landing sites on Mars.
 
Suzi Montaño and Steve Johnstone from Los Alamos National Laboratory’s Space Data Science and Systems Group (ISR-3) work on the Curiosity rover ChemCam team, and will present on the state of manned missions to Mars, and how close to a

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