news round-up: new year edition

Well, it’s only been 1 month since I posted some reading items, but there’s a lot to share!

Here’s a view of our Silver Maple during the ice storm + slushy snow:

The Gate of Heaven Is Everywhere (Harpers) Fred Bahnson reports on one of Richard Rohr’s conferences, and speaks to the American spiritual landscape in a way that I had been unable to articulate.

Here’s a great example of using drones to teach about prescribed fire. This is educational video about specific prescribed fire techniques, produced by the Purdue University Extension. I appreciate all the work that Jarred Brooke, extension wildlife specialist, has put in to educated the public on this and many natural resource issues.

Food for thought? French bean plants show signs of intent, say scientists (The Guardian) Many botanists dispute idea of plant sentience, but study of climbing beans sows seed of doubt

I think I first found the Voyageurs Wolf Project via social media. They do some seriously top-notch science communication work, and publish results of their research in both popular and scientific journals. Take a look at this one:

This Winter Marks an Incredible ‘Superflight’ of Hungry Winter Finches (Audubon) Across the country, birders are being treated to one of the biggest irruption years of boreal birds in recent memory.

Stimulus Bill Is Laden With Climate Provisions, Including a Phasedown of Chemical Super-Pollutants (Inside Climate News) Lawmakers call it the most significant climate victory to pass Congress in a decade. It includes aid and tax credits for wind and solar, and requires phasedown of HFCs.

They Know How to Prevent Megafires. Why Won’t Anybody Listen? (ProPublica) This is a story about frustration, about watching the West burn when you fully understand why it’s burning — and understand why it did not need to be this bad.

Successful Recovery of Bald Eagle Marks Big Win (Wayne Dale News) Indiana’s Natural Resources Commission (NRC) recently removed the bald eagle from Indiana’s list of state endangered and special concern species due to evidence of successful recovery.

The Resistance: In the President’s Relentless War on Climate Science, They Fought Back (Inside Climate News) The scientists’ efforts were often unseen and sometimes unsuccessful. But over four years, they mounted a guerilla defense that kept pressure on the Trump Administration.

Two centuries of energy transitions in one animated graphic: see how U.S. energy use has changed from 1800 to today (click to see the visualization).

How Did This Poisonous Plant Become One of the American South’s Most Long-Standing Staples? // The plant’s inherent toxicity hasn’t deterred those who swear by its delicious flavor and purported medicinal properties.