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Environment

Sunset Scenes Over Los Alamos And White Rock

on August 17, 2015 - 3:32pm
This past weekend, Phillip Noll sent some beautiful sunset photos from the Los Alamos/White Rock area to the Los Alamos Daily Post to share with the public. Please visit his website www.ravenmountain.com. Photo by Phillip Noll
 
Photo by Phillip Noll
 
Photo by Phillip Noll
 
Photo by Phillip Noll
 
Photo by Phillip Noll
 
Photo by Phillip Noll

WIPP: Radiological Contamination Mitigation Continues

on August 17, 2015 - 3:02pm
Courtesy/WIPP
 
WIPP News:
 
Waste Isolation Pilot Project (WIPP) personnel will complete the installation of the brattice cloth and salt barrier tthis week on a 570-foot section of floor in the WIPP underground.
 
The installation process includes rolling the brattice cloth out to cover the entire surface area of the floor and securing it to the ribs (walls) and in the center of the drift (access tunnel). Once the cloth is in place, it is covered with six to eight inches of mined salt to create a walking/driving surface.
 
This ensures radiological contamination is trapped under the

New Mexico, Colorado Delegations Urge President To Direct Federal Resources To Gold King Mine Response

on August 17, 2015 - 2:20pm
SENATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  Members of the New Mexico and Colorado congressional delegations are urging President Barack Obama to direct any and all appropriate federal resources to help respond to damage from the Gold King Mine spill that occurred last week in the Animas River.
 
Communities in both states along the affected rivers are working quickly to minimize the short-term and long-term public health and economic challenges caused by the tragic spill.
 
Recovering from the spill will take a full and coordinated approach from the Environmental Protection Agency and other federal

LANL: Young, Jupiter-like Planet Discovered

on August 16, 2015 - 9:13am

Jupiter-like planet. Couresy/LANL

LANL News:

A team of researchers has discovered a Jupiter-like planet within a young system that could provide a new understanding of how planets formed around the sun.

The new planet, called 51 Eridani b, is the first exoplanet discovered by the Gemini Planet Imager (GPI), a new instrument operated by an international collaboration headed by Bruce Macintosh, a professor of physics in the Kavli Institute at Stanford University.

Ban Lifted On Water Supply Connection To Animas And San Juan Rivers And Public’s Recreational Use

on August 16, 2015 - 8:50am

NMED NEWS:
  • Governor Susana Martinez’ Long-Term Impact Review Team in Place

FARMINGTON – New Mexico Environment Department Secretary Ryan Flynn, Game and Fish Department Director Alexa Sandoval and Health Department Secretary Retta Ward Saturday lifted the ban on San Juan County’s drinking water systems’ supply connection to the Animas and San Juan Rivers and on the public’s recreational use of the rivers.

The ban is lifted with certain prudent health practices, following the Aug. 5 Gold King Mine Spill.

“Because the waters of the Animas and San Juan Rivers are now meeting all applicable

Governor Announces Long-Term Impact Review Team to Monitor EPA-Caused Spill In Animas River

on August 14, 2015 - 11:11am

Effects of the massive 3 million gallon waste spill in the Animas River flowing through Aztec last week. Photo by Randy Foster

STATE News:

FARMINGTON — Today, Gov. Susana Martinez announced the creation of a multiagency, long-term impact review team to monitor the effects of the massive 3 million gallon waste spill in the Animas River that EPA officials have admitted to causing.

After touring the spill by helicopter for the second time in less than a week, the Governor made the announcement with cabinet secretaries and directors of the New Mexico Departments of Agriculture, Environment,

Conditions Are Perfect For UNM-LA Mushroom Hike

on August 14, 2015 - 11:01am

Boletes mushrooms. Courtesy/UNM-LA

UNM-LA News:

The recent rains have made local mountainsides green, wildflowers dot the mesa tops, and the wild mushrooms abundant if one knows where to look.

That’s why UNM-LA Community Education is excited to offer a mushroom hike 9 a.m. to 2 p.m. Saturday, Aug. 22. Experienced mushroom forager Thomas Peña is leading the hike.

“This year’s precipitation is going to be a real boon for the mushrooms,” Peña said. “Normally, the area where we hike is quite green and lush, but this should be a banner year.”

This one-day outing will have students hiking in

Wildflower Walk With Chick Keller Aug. 17

on August 14, 2015 - 9:07am

Los Alamos wildflower. Courtesy/PEEC

PEEC News:

With the continued rain, we’ve been having lately, beautiful wildflowers abound. Join PEEC's Jemez Mountain Herbarium curator, Chick Keller, for a Wildflower Walk at 5:30 p.m. Monday, Aug. 17 to discover what some of them are and where they can be found.

This will be an easy walk to identify some of the wildflowers that can be found in and around Los Alamos. The group will meet at the Nature Center at 2600 Canyon Road, and the group will carpool to the trail that Keller will select based on what is blooming at the time.

Experts Present ‘Coyotes In Our Midst’ At Nature Center

on August 14, 2015 - 9:03am
A coyote spotted in Corrales. Photo by Project Coyote

PEEC News:

From deserts to mountains, coyotes are one of the most adaptable species in New Mexico. However, not everyone welcomes the resilience of this local predator.

To learn more about this canine, meet New Mexico Project Coyote representative, Judy Paulsen, and Project Coyote Science Advisory Board Wildlife Biologist Dave Parsons, as they speak at 7 p.m. Tuesday, Aug. 18 at the Los Alamos Nature Center, about the challenges and opportunities coyotes provide to both urban and rural communities.

This presentation reveals the

PEEC Amateur Naturalist: Visualizing Nature With Art

on August 14, 2015 - 8:28am
Maple leaf. Courtesy photo
 
Maple leaf painting by Cathy Hillegas. Courtesy image
 
 
PEEC Amateur Naturalist
By ROBERT DRYJA
 
Visualizing Nature with Art
 
The natural world can be visualized with a digital technology in a variety of ways.
 
A digital photograph may have its contrast, spectrum, or color saturation manipulated to create a more interesting image or emphasize some characteristic. The maple leaf photograph is an example of this.
 
The leaf is lit from behind in order to emphasize the rib pattern in it.

Luján Meets With EPA Administrator McCarthy

on August 13, 2015 - 10:16pm

U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján

STATE News:

FARMINGTON - U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján of New Mexico's Third District released the following statement today after participating in meetings and briefings with EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy over the past two days on the Gold King Mine spill. 

Luján met with McCarthy in Durango, Colo., and Farmington. Earlier in the week he spoke with McCarty on the importance of visiting New Mexico. Luján, along with New Mexico Senators Udall and Heinrich, also sent a letter to McCarthy to express their concerns with EPA's response.

EPA Administrator Gina McCarthy

"As a

PNM Has New Plan For San Juan Generating Station

on August 13, 2015 - 5:18pm

SIERRA CLUB News:
  • New Plan Includes Clean Energy Credits and Offers Opportunity to Revisit Future of SJGS in 2018

ALBUQUERQUE - Today the Public Service Company of New Mexico released a new plan for the future of the San Juan Generating Station as part of their ongoing negotiations with the Public Regulation Commission.

 

In response, Nellis Kennedy-Howard, Senior Campaign Representative for the Sierra Club’s Beyond Coal Campaign, released the following statement:

 

“PNM’s new plan for the San Juan Generating Station offers an opportunity for PNM to commit to retiring this outdated,

This Week At The Reel Deal

on August 12, 2015 - 11:07am
By JIM O'DONNELL
Reel Deal Theater

Unfortunately we have to quit a couple good movies after only one week to make room for new ones. Alas, it would be nice to have 6 or 8 screens!

Mr. Holmes and Southpaw are ending this Thursday. This Friday we are opening the much requested Ricki and the Flash and The Man from UNCLE.  Mission Impossible and Fantastic Four will hold for one more week.

Ricki and the Flash:  Three-time Academy Award (R) winner Meryl Streep goes electric and takes on a whole new gig - a hard-rocking singer/guitarist - for Oscar (R)-winning director Jonathan Demme and Academy

James Robinson: Every Bear Has His Day

on August 11, 2015 - 6:40pm
Layton, a Black Bear cub weighed just over 4 pounds when discovered inside a small crate. Courtesy photo
 
By JAMES ROBINSON
Los Alamos

Earlier this spring, Layton, a Black Bear cub came to Dr. Kathleen Ramsay's Cottonwood Rehab in desperate need of help.

Layton was found inside a crate outside a feed store in Tijeras and only weighed 4.25 pounds. Although challenging, Dr. Ramsay and Land of Enchantment Wildlife Foundation worked together to raise the funds to help her get Layton to a releasable weight.

Despite the challenges, Layton now weighs more than 50 pounds and is very much a

CVNM On Governor's Gold King Mine Spill Comments

on August 11, 2015 - 6:17pm

CVNM News:

SANTA FE – Conservation Voters New Mexico (CVNM) is saddened by the devastation that has been caused by the Gold King Mine spill, and stands in solidarity with all communities that have been and will be impacted by this event.

In response to the comments Gov. Susana Martinez made today concerning the Gold King Mine spill that has now reached New Mexico's Four Corners region, CVNM Executive Director Demis Foster issued the following statement:

”We call upon Governor Martinez to address the very real toxic legacy that has plagued many of New Mexico's rural, impoverished, indigenous,

Gold King Mine Spill’s Groundwater Effects Still Being Investigated In New Mexico

on August 11, 2015 - 6:06pm

NMED Secretary Ryan Flynn

NMED News:

  • Plume Passes Through New Mexico; Leaves Sediments Behind

FARMINGTON – Today, seven well water testing teams were deployed by the New Mexico Environment Department in concert with the Environmental Protection Agency to test domestic water wells near the Animas River which flows through Farmington and Aztec. 

“Although the Gold King Mine Spill’s heavy metals plume has mostly passed through the area, the sediments left behind are capable of influencing groundwater quality,” NMED Secretary Ryan Flynn said.

AGU: Melting Glaciers Feed Antarctic Food Chain

on August 11, 2015 - 11:47am
AGU News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C.  Nutrient-rich water from melting Antarctic glaciers nourishes the ocean food chain, creating feeding “hot spots” in large gaps in the sea ice, according to a new study.
 
New research finds that iron stored in the region’s glaciers is being shuttled by melting water to open areas of the ocean, called polynyas, where it stimulates growth of phytoplankton, ocean algae that form the base of the marine food chain.
 
Krill and fish thrive on phytoplankton, and these smaller animals support penguins, seals and whales that feed and breed in the polynyas that ring the

Heinrich, Lujan Grisham Join Community To Celebrate LWCF At Petroglyph National Monument

on August 11, 2015 - 9:26am
STATE News:
 
WASHINGTON, D.C. U.S. Sen. Martin Heinrich and U.S Rep. Michelle Lujan Grisham will join a diverse coalition of community leaders this morning to celebrate the success of the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF) during its 50th anniversary with a visit to the Petroglyph National Monument in Albuquerque.
 
At a community event, local leaders will call for reauthorization and full funding of the landmark conservation law that is set to expire Sept. 30. The public and media are encouraged to attend.
 
Heinrich, a member of the Senate Committee on Energy and Natural

WIPP Hosts Fire Protection & Response Workshop

on August 11, 2015 - 9:06am
Representatives from DOE headquarters and other agencies meet in Carlsbad for a fire protection and emergency response workshop. Courtesy photo
 
WIPP News:
 
Fire protection experts from the Department of Energy’s Office of Environmental Management (DOE-EM), the Mine Safety and Health Administration (MSHA), the Defense Nuclear Facilities Safety Board (DNFSB), the Carlsbad Field Office (CBFO), and Nuclear Waste Partnership (NWP) gathered for a workshop this week in Carlsbad.
 
The purpose of the workshop was to identify and discuss applicable fire safety and emergency response

Governor Declares State of Emergency From EPA Spill

on August 10, 2015 - 6:14pm

Contamination discolors Animas River in Aztec. Photo by Randy Foster

STATE News:

SANTA FE – Today, Gov. Susana Martinez declared a state of emergency in response to the massive 3 million gallon waste spill in the Animas River in Colorado that EPA officials have admitted to causing.

The Governor toured the spill by helicopter and met with local officials Saturday in San Juan County.

NM Lawmakers Write EPA On Gold King Mine Spill

on August 10, 2015 - 3:46pm

STATE News:
  • Lawmakers Call for Point Person to Oversee Agency’s Response

WASHINGTON, D.C. – In a letter today to Environmental Protection Agency Administrator Gina McCarthy, U.S. Senators Tom Udall and Martin Heinrich and U.S. Rep. Ben Ray Luján expressed their concern with the EPA’s response to the Gold King Mine spill that has sent three million gallons of wastewater into the Animas River.

In the letter, the lawmakers called on EPA to improve communication with federal, state, and local officials and with members of the public, urging the agency to appoint one point person to oversee the

Lujan On Mine Spill: 'EPA Caused This Mess And They Must Take Full Responsibility To Clean It'

on August 8, 2015 - 6:45pm

The normally 'crystal clear' Animas River today in Aztec following Wednesday's EPA mine spill. Photo by Randy Foster

 

The Animas River today in Aztec following Wednesday's EPA mine spill. Photo by Randy Foster
 

 

STATE News:

FARMINGTON – U.S. Rep Ray Luján of New Mexico’s Third District released the following statement today after participating in a public meeting in Farmington with federal, state, and local officials and members of the community to provide information on the Gold King Mine spill that has impacted the Animas River.

“Today’s meeting made it clear that there must be

Governor Touring Waste Spill In Animas River

on August 8, 2015 - 2:37pm

Gov. Susana Martinez

STATE News:

Farmington — Today at 3:30 p.m., Gov. Susana Martinez will tour the massive waste spill in the Animas River that EPA officials have admitted to causing.

The Governor will then go to Berg Park in Farmington to share the state’s response to this incident.

NMED Informs Residents On Gold King Mine Spill

on August 8, 2015 - 8:22am

NMED News:

SANTA FE – San Juan County officials along with New Mexico Environment Department Cabinet Secretary Ryan Flynn and New Mexico State Engineer Tom Blaine held two informational meetings Friday on the Gold King Mine Spill coursing through the Animas River.

San Juan County communities and news media were updated with the most current information on state and local responses, with information on the movement of the sediment and on currently imposed public safety precautions.

The New Mexico Environment Department is on the ground taking independent water quality samples every six

NMED Issues Precautions For EPA Gold King Mine Spill

on August 7, 2015 - 8:05pm

NMED News:
  • Contaminated Plume Now in New Mexico

SANTA FE – The New Mexico Environment Department continues working with local, regional, and federal stakeholders to advise San Juan County citizens of safety precautions, while updating those affected about the Gold King Mine Spill’s pulse location and effects. 

Adherence to the following important safety measures is critical during and after the period of time while the Gold King mining wastewater release courses through the Animas and San Juan Rivers and the surrounding communities.

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