Environment

12:57am

Wed October 16, 2013
Environment

Fuel In The Fire: Burn Wood For Power Or Leave It To Nature

Originally published on Wed October 16, 2013 10:59 am

At more than 400 square miles, the Rim Fire is the largest Sierra Nevada fire in recorded history.
Mike McMillan US Forest Service

The record-breaking wildfire in Yosemite National Park is almost fully contained, two months after it started. The blaze calls attention to a problem across the western U.S.: After a century of having its fires routinely extinguished, the forests are overloaded with fuel.

A heated debate has flared up about what to do with that forest fuel. California is hoping to reduce its fire risk through renewable energy, but some worry about the environmental costs of thinning the forests.

'It Was Torched'

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10:37am

Fri October 11, 2013

6:08pm

Tue October 8, 2013
Environment

Where Did The Spilled Oil From Colorado Floods Go?

A flooded oil and gas site near Greeley, Colo., Sept. 15.
Ken Broeffle KUNC

Despite spills of nearly 62,000 gallons of petroleum products from oil and gas wells during September’s floods, no pollutants have been detected in Colorado’s waterways.

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3:45pm

Tue October 8, 2013
Colorado Flood

Flood Forensics: Why Colorado's Floods Were So Destructive

Originally published on Wed October 9, 2013 8:25 am

Flooding brought down a house in Jamestown, Colo., on Sept. 18.
Matthew Staver Landov

Parts of Colorado are still drying out after floods hit the state last month. Eight people died, and damage from the worst flooding in decades is in the hundreds of millions of dollars.

Scientists are now venturing into the hardest-hit areas to do a sort of "flood forensics" to understand why the floods were so bad.

Geologist Jonathan Godt takes Peak Highway in northern Colorado up into the Rockies. The road there winds past ravines and streams where water is still rushing.

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4:22pm

Sun September 29, 2013
Environment

Is Living With Extreme Wildfires The New Normal?

Originally published on Mon September 30, 2013 3:02 pm

A house destroyed by a wildfire in Yarnell, Ariz. Experts say increasing expansion into wildfire-prone areas has created new challenges for firefighters unequipped to protect houses and structures.
Andy Tobin AP

It has been a deadly year for the people who fight wildfires. In total, 32 people have lost their lives fighting fires in 2013; the highest number in nearly 20 years, according to the National Interagency Fire Center.

Just one incident accounts for most of those deaths, the Yarnell Hill fire in Arizona. In June, the blaze blasted through a firefighting crew known as the Granite Mountain Hotshots; 19 of the 20 men died.

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