tagged w/ Eagles
CONVERSE COUNTY, Wyo. (AP) — It happens about once a month here, on the barren foothills of one of America's green-energy boomtowns: A soaring golden eagle slams into a wind farm's spinning turbine and falls, mangled and lifeless, to the ground.
Killing these iconic birds is not just an irreplaceable loss for a vulnerable species. It's also a federal crime, a charge that the Obama administration has used to prosecute oil companies when birds drown in their waste pits, and power companies when birds are electrocuted by their power lines.
But the administration has never fined or prosecuted a wind-energy company, even those that flout the law repeatedly. Instead, the government is shielding the industry from liability and helping keep the scope of the deaths secret.
Wind power, a pollution-free energy intended to ease global warming, is a cornerstone of President Barack Obama's energy plan. His administration has championed a $1 billion-a-year tax break to the industry that has nearly doubled the amount of wind power in his first term.
But like the oil industry under President George W. Bush, lobbyists and executives have used their favored status to help steer U.S. energy policy.
The result is a green industry that's allowed to do not-so-green things. It kills protected species with impunity and conceals the environmental consequences of sprawling wind farms.
More than 573,000 birds are killed by the country's wind farms each year, including 83,000 hunting birds such as hawks, falcons and eagles, according to an estimate published in March in the peer-reviewed Wildlife Society Bulletin.
Getting precise figures is impossible because many companies aren't required to disclose how many birds they kill. And when they do, experts say, the data can be unreliable.
When companies voluntarily report deaths, the Obama administration in many cases refuses to make the information public, saying it belongs to the energy companies or that revealing it would expose trade secrets or implicate ongoing enforcement investigations.
Nearly all the birds being killed are protected under federal environmental laws, which prosecutors have used to generate tens of millions of dollars in fines and settlements from businesses, including oil and gas companies, over the past five years.
"We are all responsible for protecting our wildlife, even the largest of corporations," Colorado U.S. Attorney David M. Gaouette said in 2009 when announcing Exxon Mobil had pleaded guilty and would pay $600,000 for killing 85 birds in five states, including Wyoming.
The large death toll at wind farms shows how the renewable energy rush comes with its own environmental consequences, trade-offs the Obama administration is willing to make in the name of cleaner energy.
"It is the rationale that we have to get off of carbon, we have to get off of fossil fuels, that allows them to justify this," said Tom Dougherty, a long-time environmentalist who worked for nearly 20 years for the National Wildlife Federation in the West, until his retirement in 2008. "But at what cost? In this case, the cost is too high."
The Obama administration has refused to accept that cost when the fossil-fuel industry is to blame. The BP oil company was fined $100 million for killing and harming migratory birds during the 2010 Gulf oil spill. And PacifiCorp, which operates coal plants in Wyoming, paid more than $10.5 million in 2009 for electrocuting 232 eagles along power lines and at its substations.
But PacifiCorp also operates wind farms in the state, where at least 20 eagles have been found dead in recent years, according to corporate surveys submitted to the federal government and obtained by The Associated Press. They've neither been fined nor prosecuted. A spokesman for PacifiCorp, which is a subsidiary of MidAmerican Energy Holdings Co. of Des Moines, Iowa, said that's because its turbines may not be to blame.
"What it boils down to is this: If you electrocute an eagle, that is bad, but if you chop it to pieces, that is OK," said Tim Eicher, a former U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service enforcement agent based in Cody, who helped prosecute the PacifiCorp power line case.
By not enforcing the law, the administration provides little incentive for companies to build wind farms where there are fewer birds. And while companies already operating turbines are supposed to avoid killing birds, in reality there's little they can do once the windmills are spinning.
Wind farms are clusters of turbines as tall as 30-story buildings, with spinning rotors as wide as a passenger jet's wingspan. Though the blades appear to move slowly, they can reach speeds up to 170 mph at the tips, creating tornado-like vortexes.
Flying eagles behave like drivers texting on their cellphones; they don't look up. As they scan for food, they don't notice the industrial turbine blades until it's too late.
The rehabilitation coordinator for the Rocky Mountain Raptor Program, Michael Tincher, said he euthanized two golden eagles found starving and near death near wind farms. Both had injuries he'd never seen before: One of their wings appeared to be twisted off.
"There is nothing in the evolution of eagles that would come near to describing a wind turbine. There has never been an opportunity to adapt to that sort of threat," said Grainger Hunt, an eagle expert who researches the U.S. wind-power industry's deadliest location, a northern California area known as Altamont Pass. Wind farms built there decades ago kill more than 60 per year.
Eagle deaths have forced the Obama administration into a difficult choice between its unbridled support for wind energy and enforcing environmental laws that could slow the industry's growth.
Former Interior Secretary Ken Salazar, in an interview with the AP before his departure, denied any preferential treatment for wind. Interior Department officials said that criminal prosecution, regardless of the industry, is always a "last resort."
"There's still additional work to be done with eagles and other avian species, but we are working on it very hard," Salazar said. "We will get to the right balance."
Meanwhile, the Obama administration has proposed a rule that would give wind-energy companies potentially decades of shelter from prosecution for killing eagles. The regulation is currently under review at the White House.
The proposal, made at the urging of the wind-energy industry, would allow companies to apply for 30-year permits to kill a set number of bald or golden eagles. Previously, companies were only eligible for five-year permits.
In exchange for the longer timetable, companies agree that if they kill more eagles than allowed, the government could require them to make changes. But the administration recently said it would cap how much a company could be forced to spend on finding ways to reduce the number of eagles its facility is killing.
The Obama administration said the longer permit was needed to "facilitate responsible development of renewable energy" while "continuing to protect eagles."
That's because without a long-term authorization to kill eagles, investors are less likely to finance an industry that's violating the law.
[See link for rest of story]
http://xfinity.comcast.net/articles/news-politics/20130514/US--Wind.Energy-Eagle.Deaths/CONVERSE COUNTY, Wyo. (AP) — It happens about once a month here, on the barren... more
No jury can convict John Edwards. Here's why.
Los Angeles Times...
Nine bald eagles counted so far in winter census
December 19, 2011 | 11:56 am
Biologists and volunteers spent the weekend scouring lakeside areas in the San Bernardino and San Jacinto mountains for the first bald eagle count of the winter.
Nine bald eagles were seen Saturday by a group of about 80 volunteers and state and federal biologists participating in the eagle census. Four of the eagles (three adults and a juvenile) were found in the Big Bear and Baldwin Lake area; two juveniles were at Lake Arrowhead and Lake Gregory; and one adult and one juvenile were found at Silverwood Lake.
The spotters could tell the difference between juveniles and adults by their color. Juveniles have a brown head and tail, while adults have the white head and tail that takes four to five years to grow in.
Eagle countings will take place in January, February and March. The number of eagles in Southern California is typically low in December, but increases at the beginning of the year as more migrate south.
Eagles like to spend their winters here because of the abundance of ducks and fish.
.Los Angeles Times... . Nine bald eagles counted so far in winter census... more
This tiny football fanatic from Philadelphia became extremely disgusted with the New England Patriots and their quarterback when the team surged ahead of his beloved Eagles in a game last Sunday. Little Christopher was inconsolable as he exclaimed that Brady was "sucky"...among other things...
http://veracitystew.com/2011/12/02/tiny-eagles-fan-i-hate-you-tom-brady-video/This tiny football fanatic from Philadelphia became extremely disgusted with the New... more
Los Angeles Times...
Jane Scott dies at 92; longtime rock critic
Journalist Jane Scott was 45 when she was assigned to cover a Beatles show in 1964. It changed her life.
PHOTO: Jane Scott with the Who in the late 1960s.
By Elaine Woo, Los Angeles Times
July 5, 2011
Jane Scott was a code breaker for the Navy during World War II. She owned a wind-up Victrola. And the first song she ever loved was from the big band era: a Jimmy Rushing hit for Count Basie called "Sent for You Yesterday (And Here You Come Today)." So she was among the most improbable candidates for the job she would perform with undisguised gusto for almost 40 years.
Scott, 92, who died in Cleveland on Monday after a long illness, was middle-aged when the Cleveland Plain Dealer sent her to cover the Beatles in 1964. She charged on for 38 years, covering the Rolling Stones, Led Zeppelin, Janis Joplin, the Doors, the Who, the Beach Boys, Bruce Springsteen and every other major and minor group that played her town. When she retired in 2002, she was, at 82, the oldest rock critic in the country.
"She was a legend," said Lauren Onkey, vice president of the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in Cleveland. "Every band has a good thing to say about her no matter what their style. I think that speaks to her curiosity. She was an avid rock 'n' roll fan who … had a way of communicating with artists. She got into every show."
Scott sometimes called herself "the world's oldest teenager," who found something to love about every act she saw. That tendency may not have made her a must-read among other critics but it endeared her to many of her subjects.
Jim Morrison invited her backstage for a beer. Jimi Hendrix took her along when he shopped for a blue Corvette. She sang "California Girls" with Brian Wilson at a hotel piano bar during an interview. When Springsteen played Cleveland, he dedicated "Dancing in the Dark" to her.
"Scott was on a first-name basis not only with music fans throughout northeast Ohio, but with most of the luminaries in the rock 'n' roll universe," Plain Dealer pop music critic John Soeder wrote in her obituary. Among those luminaries was Lyle Lovett, who paid tribute to Scott in a Twitter message, writing that the rock music world had lost "one of the dearest members of its family."
It was impossible not to notice Scott at a rock concert. She was the matronly woman in the dyed satin-blond pageboy and big, red trifocals. She always had her ticket stub pinned to her outfit so that if anyone was tempted to steal it "they'd have to tear my blouse off." She carried a big purse, in which she kept earplugs and a peanut butter sandwich.
In a sense Scott's love of rock music was unavoidable. She was born on May 3, 1919, in Cleveland, where 33 years later, in 1952, deejay Alan Freed would mount what is often described as the world's first major rock concert, the Moondog Coronation Ball. After her military stint based in Washington with the WAVES, Scott, a University of Michigan graduate in English, entered journalism, eventually landing at the Plain Dealer as a society writer. She started there three days after Freed's historic concert.
She was writing a youth column for the paper in 1964 when the Beatles came to town. When she realized no one had been assigned to cover the Fab Four's appearance, she volunteered. It changed her life.
"After that," she recalled in a 2002 interview with the Washington Post, "I knew the kids didn't want to read about the tennis team over at Amherst High School.... The Beatles were theirs, and the beautiful thing was their parents hated it. That's the most important point. Their parents hated it!"
She was already 45 then, but she did not try to conceal her age. She did not start wearing mini-skirts, leather or tattoos. If anyone gave her any guff, she gave it right back.
"One day I got a snotty remark at a concert," Scott, who never married or had children, told the New York Times in 1999. "I said: 'Don't you dare call me mom. I'm old enough to be your grandmother."
She wrote from the perspective of a fan, which was a weakness by some accounts. Most critics would probably not welcome a message like the one she received from one of her fans, Glenn Frey of the Eagles, when she turned 80. "Jane," Frey said, "you never met a band you didn't like."
Scott made no apologies. "If you want to write for yourself, go write a diary," she said of her critics in a 2002 interview with the American Journalism Review. "I am the eyes and ears of the people who can't get [to the concert] or can't afford it."
.Los Angeles Times... Jane Scott dies at 92; longtime rock critic Journalist... more
Decapitated bald eagle found in Louisiana ditch
By Mark Morgenstein, CNN
April 5, 2011 6:02 p.m. EDT
A bald eagle with its head cut off is found in a drainage ditch in northeastern Louisiana
Bald eagles are federally protected; killing one could bring fines and jail time
A hotline number is available for people who have information about the incident
(CNN) -- A brutal, fatal case of suspected cruelty to animals is under investigation in Louisiana, the state's wildlife department said in a press release Tuesday.
The animal cruelty doesn't involve the typical household pet. This time, the United States' national bird was victimized.
Agents from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries found a beheaded bald eagle Sunday in a drainage ditch in Franklin Parish, in the northeastern part of the state, according to the release.
"To see any protected animal decapitated in a ditch is disheartening enough, let alone the animal that represents our symbol of freedom," said Capt. Alan Bankston of the wildlife department.
The agents believe the bird had been dead for a couple of days before it was found. Wildlife and Fisheries spokesman Adam Einck said the eagle was found in a very remote location, and agents are unsure if the bird was killed there, or slain somewhere else and dumped there.
Agents are trying to schedule a necropsy to determine how the eagle died, Einck said.
Bald eagles are protected by the Bald and Golden Eagle Protection Act and the Migratory Bird Treaty Act. Anyone who is convicted of violating those acts could be fined $5,000 and jailed for up to 18 months for each count, the state wildlife department said.
Bankston urged the public to call the department with any information about the beheading. Anyone providing information leading to an arrest or conviction would be eligible for up to $2,000 in cash rewards.
The agency's hotline number is 1-800-442-2511.Decapitated bald eagle found in Louisiana ditch By Mark Morgenstein, CNN April 5,... more
The Raptor Resource Project brings you the Decorah Eagles from atop their tree at the fish hatchery in Decorah, Iowa.Decorah Eagles The Raptor Resource Project brings you the Decorah Eagles from... more
James Taylor. Carole King. Jackson Browne. David Crosby. Joni Mitchell. Kris Kristofferson. If these names have any meaning for you, then you must watch “Troubadours,” the American Masters PBS special Wednesday. (If you do not recognize any of these names, I forbid you from visiting this site again. Ever.)
http://web.me.com/writa1/tvsoundoff/TV_reviews/Entries/2011/2/28_Troubadours__Saga_of_the_singer-songwriter.htmlJames Taylor. Carole King. Jackson Browne. David Crosby. Joni Mitchell. Kris... more
American Masters is one of the reasons we need PBS. Wednesday it airs “Troubadours,” the fascinating story of the rise in the early 1970s of the singer/songwriter. It is centered on the Troubadour, the L.A. night spot that became the launching pad for many of these artists, including Carole King, James Taylor, Bonnie Raitt, and Elton John (he made his first U.S. appearance there). Video outtakes featuring Steve Martin and Bonnie Raitt here:
http://web.me.com/writa1/tvsoundoff/videos/Entries/2011/2/25_Troubadours_outtake_videos.htmlAmerican Masters is one of the reasons we need PBS. Wednesday it airs... more
Birds of Prey are making an amazing effort to adapt to New York City. In some cases, you have Hawks in Central Park that have utilized attack tactics only observed in Peregrines. At the north tip of Manhattan you have Eagles making nests and utilizing the one section of the island that has not changed from its original landscaping.Birds of Prey are making an amazing effort to adapt to New York City. In some cases,... more
Latest Complete Sports News Updates Eagles wide receiver Mr. DeSean Jackson left Sunday's playoff game against Green Bay with an injured left knee. The last wild card game featured today was between the Philadelphia Eagles and Green Bay Packers.Latest Complete Sports News Updates Eagles wide receiver Mr. DeSean Jackson left... more
On a bizarre day when the Philadelphia Eagles were snowed out, they celebrated an NFC East championship....
http://www.indiareport.com/India-usa-uk-news/ap/Sports/70835On a bizarre day when the Philadelphia Eagles were snowed out, they celebrated an NFC... more
Eagle FB Leonard Weaver Leaves Game With Gruesome Injury
By Bruce Ciskie
After a great 2009 season, more good things were expected in 2010 out of veteran fullback Leonard Weaver of the Philadelphia Eagles. It could be some time, however, before he sees the field again.
Weaver suffered an awful-looking leg injury while carrying the ball in the second quarter of the Eagles’ opener Sunday against the Green Bay Packers.
On a short run, Weaver was stood up by Packers Nick Barnett and B.J. Raji. As Raji — the bigger man of the two — hit Weaver high, his leg buckled underneath him.
Click to View...GRAPHIC VIDEO: Watch Eagles Leonard Weaver Gruesome Leg Twisting Injury…http://ctpatriot1970.wordpress.com/2010/09/13/graphic-video-watch-eagles-leonard-weaver-gruesome-leg-twisting-injry-owww/Eagle FB Leonard Weaver Leaves Game With Gruesome Injury Nfl.fanhouse.com... more
The following article is a response to Thomas Qualtere of The Heritage Foundation’s recent article “Hawks we are, hawks we must remain,” published on the Web site of The Daily Caller (http://dailycaller.com/2010/03/02/hawks-we-are-hawks-we-must-remain/).
I rarely become truly angry when reading the opinion of a fellow human being. As should be obvious from my libertarian associations, I understand that free speech is inextricably linked with freedom. However, while I would never advocate for the silencing of one whose opinion I find little to no common ground with, I can still say that Thomas Qualtere of the Heritage Foundation’s recent article concerning the future of both foreign policy and conservatism in our nation deeply saddens me, and reinforces in my mind the importance of helping my fellow Americans gain an accurate understanding of the misguided foreign policy that has led our country into a cycle of perpetual war and violence from which it often seems there is no escape.
Qualtere attempts to address the question of where the youth of today should commit themselves in terms of creating the American foreign policy of tomorrow. “We are the 9/11 generation,” he writes. Qualtere states that we are a generation that should understand the cost of not confronting our enemies overseas, and that the lessons of 9/11 should be our call to fight for an American foreign policy that deals with our enemies where they live, rather than lets them come to strike us at home.
According to Qualtere, we are children of the 80’s and 90’s, the 80’s being “harmonious, optimistic, and thriving,” and the 90’s being “a time of peace and prosperity that neither our parents nor grandparents ever knew.” It seems that Qualtere believes that the most important things to remember about the 80’s and 90’s are that “the music was great, the movies were fun, the new cellular telephones were neat and the World Wide Web was even cooler.” Then, 9/11 came, ending America’s party.
I at least give Qualtere credit for admitting his own ignorance. Indeed, one would have to selectively remember only certain aspects of the 80’s and 90’s to have as flawed an understanding of the modern Middle East as he does.
Let’s not remember the fact that the CIA in the 1980’s taught the fighters who would one day be the Taliban how to build and employ suicide bombs. Let’s not remember that during the Iraq-Iran war, the United States supplied Saddam Hussein with many of the weapons that he would use to kill American soldiers just a few years later. Let’s not remember that it was the official policy of both Presidents Carter and Reagan to give the Afghani freedom fighters who were attempting to keep the USSR at bay just enough aid to perpetuate the Russian invasion for the sake of draining the Soviets, but not nearly enough to aid to bring an end to the conflict in order to give the Soviets "their Vietnam War," resulting in massive Afghani casualties.
Let’s certainly not remember that during the 80’s and much of the 90’s, Osama bin Laden was receiving a nice fat paycheck from Uncle Sam. Let’s not remember that during the 80’s, the CIA provided the most extremist Muslim groups with weapons, support, training and thousands of Korans as methods of support and recruitment. Let’s not remember that the majority of the Islamic extremists we are fighting today are the result of a network of recruitment that was conceptualized, financed, and maintained with American taxpayer money.
Let’s not remember that it was the Pakistani Inter-Services Intelligence that, with American backing, organized the Taliban in the brutal Afghani civil war that followed Soviet withdrawal from the region. And, if we are going to maintain our simple image of the people we are fighting in the Middle East as “bad” and ourselves as “good,” then it is certainly important not to remember that the Taliban was receiving US foreign aid up to the very moment that American forces were crossing into their territory.
So yes, Mr. Qualtere, if you forget this entire history of American involvement in the Middle East, cite 9/11 as the beginning of our war in the region, and simplify your enemy as “bad guys” and yourself as the “good guy,” I suppose your argument makes sense.
*Read More at Link*The following article is a response to Thomas Qualtere of The Heritage... more
But firearms must be allowed by state where park is located
updated 5:47 p.m. PT, Fri., Feb. 19, 2010
WASHINGTON - Loaded guns will be allowed in Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon and other national parks under a new law that takes effect Monday.
The law lets licensed gun owners bring firearms into national parks and wildlife refuges as long as they are allowed by state law. It comes over the objections of gun-control advocates who fear it will lead to increased violence in national parks.
The national parks law takes effect in a climate that favors advocates of gun rights. The debate shifted dramatically in 2008, when the Supreme Court struck down a handgun ban in Washington, D.C., and declared that individuals have a constitutional right to possess firearms for self-defense and other purposes.
Gun owners have rushed in record numbers to get concealed weapons permits, saying they worry President Barack Obama and the Democratic Congress may impose stricter gun laws. The National Rifle Association lobbied hard to allow guns in parks and has spent millions to challenge its opponents.
Now gun-control advocates are on the defensive, seeking to preserve some gun restrictions in the face of aggressive assertions of gun rights.
As of Monday, guns will be allowed in all but about 20 of the park service’s 392 locations, including some of its most iconic parks: Yellowstone, the Grand Canyon, Great Smoky Mountains, Yosemite and Rocky Mountain National Park. Guns will not be allowed in visitor centers or rangers’ offices, because firearms are banned in federal buildings, but they could be carried into private lodges or concession stands, depending on state laws.
'A paranoid society'
Paul Helmke, president of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, said national parks are now among the safest places in America, but that could change under the new law. Current rules severely restrict guns in the national parks, generally requiring them to be locked or stored.
“It really is sad that we’ve become such a paranoid society that people want to take guns pretty much everywhere — including national parks,” he said Friday.
“When you are at a campfire and people are getting loud and boisterous next to you, you used to have to worry about them quieting down. Now you have to worry about when they will start shooting,” Helmke said.
Bill Wade, president of the Coalition of National Park Service Retirees, called the new law a sad chapter in the history of the park system.
“People go to national parks to get away from things that they face in their everyday living, where they live and work. Now I think that social dynamic is really going to change,” he said.
Bryan Faehner, associate director of the National Parks Conservation Association, said the law would place an unfair burden on park service employees, who will have to wade though a variety of state and local laws to determine whether visitors are breaking the law.
Officials said visitors who want to bring a gun to a national park need to understand and comply with state gun laws. More than 30 national parks span more than one state, so visitors need to know where they are in those parks and which state law applies, the park service said.
Supporter: Concerns overblown
A spokesman for the National Rifle Association scoffed at the idea that parks would become more dangerous, saying people have been assaulted and even murdered in national parks.
“This common-sense measure will enhance the self-defense rights of law-abiding Americans and also ensure uniformity of firearm laws within a state,” said Chris W. Cox, the NRA’s chief lobbyist.
The National Park Service said there were 3,760 reported major crimes, including five homicides and 37 rapes, in 2008, the most recent year for which data was available. The agency does not note which crimes involve firearms. Crime is down across the system’s parks, according to park service spokesman David Barna.
Sen. Tom Coburn, R-Okla., who led congressional efforts to change the law, said concerns about increased violence were overblown.
“I don’t expect anything major to come from this other than to restore the Second Amendment rights taken away by bureaucrats,” Coburn said
The park service has prepared for months for the new law. “We will administer this law as we do all others — fairly and consistently,” National Park Service Director Jon Jarvis said in a statement.
National parks hosted about 275 million visitors in 2008, the agency said.But firearms must be allowed by state where park is located updated 5:47 p.m. PT,... more
Herschel Walker MMA Debut
Diaz shares spotlight with Walker at Strikeforce: Miami
SUNRISE, Fla. — In front of a subdued crowd that seemed more suited for Tokyo’s cavernous stadiums than America’s raucous arenas, Nick Diaz put his stamp on the Strikeforce welterweight division with an impressive first-round stoppage of Dream champion Marius Zaromskis.
Watch the FULL VIDEO of Herschel Walkers MMA Debut....http://ctpatriot1970.wordpress.com/2010/02/02/herschel-walker-vs-brock-lesnar-walker-mma-debut-video-diaz-shares-spotlight/
Saturday’s main event at the BankAtlantic Center before 8,156 fans —Herschel Walker MMA Debut Diaz shares spotlight with Walker at Strikeforce: Miami... more