The president’s distrust of expert studies and advice has put farm workers at risk in Kern County, Calif., where a pesticide the Obama administration moved to ban is still in widespread use. [New York Times]
…Had Donald J. Trump not won the presidency in 2016, millions of pounds of chlorpyrifos most likely would not have been applied to American crops over the past 21 months….The administration’s choice not to curb the use of chlorpyrifos is a case study in how ideological and special-interest considerations outweighed decades of evidence about the potential harm associated with its use. The effects of such large-scale decision making are felt locally. And in the case of chlorpyrifos, there may be no place where the tension between science and the administration’s policy inclinations plays out more than in California’s Kern County, the vast crosshatched expanse roughly the size of New Jersey that surrounds Bakersfield.
How California grapes and the U.S.-China trade war are giving Chile a headache [BLOOMBERG]
President Trump’s trade war with China and a late-blooming bumper crop in the United States are combining to curb the amount of fresh table grapes imported from Chile when the weather turns cold. That’s forcing the South American country to look to Asia to sell off its fruit. It’s the latest example of an unexpected market getting caught up in the U.S.-China spat….In California, the main source of grapes in the United States, there’s also a late harvest that has begun to compete with Southern Hemisphere farms.
Lessons learned in forest management [Klamath Falls Herald and News]
The Stone Fire, which sparked near Alturas, Calif., in August, was just one of many that would threaten communities in the region throughout the year, but the actions to protect and treat forestland years before the first spark started, provided key lessons in tangible fire suppression going forward through proper forest management. It doesn’t take long to notice the stark difference in treated and untreated areas in the wake of the lightning-caused fire, which burned over 39,000 acres after being first detected near Yellowjacket Springs Aug. 15 on the Modoc National Forest….The dead side of the road was left to grow naturally. The healthy side had experienced a timber sale, tree-thinning, and prescribed burn efforts several years before the Stone Fire occurred.
Rogue Pack of wolves takes down seventh cow [Associated Press]
Authorities say gray wolf OR-7′s Rogue Pack has killed another cow at a northeastern Jackson County ranch, marking the seventh confirmed livestock kill attributed to the pack since late October. The Mail Tribune reports that the Oregon Department of Fish and Wildlife reports that the dead and partially consumed cow was found Sunday on a ranch in the Boundary Butte area where the Rogue Pack has killed before, but a report did not identify the ranch….OR-7 and his pack will not be subject to lethal removal by ODFW because they are in Western Oregon, where gray wolves are federally protected under the Endangered Species Act.
One year of legal pot sales and California doesn’t have the bustling industry it expected. Here’s why [Los Angeles Times]
…But as the first year of licensed sales comes to a close, California’s legal market hasn’t performed as state officials and the cannabis industry had hoped. Retailers and growers say they’ve been stunted by complex regulations, high taxes and decisions by most cities to ban cannabis shops….“The cannabis industry is being choked by California’s penchant for over-regulation,” said Dale Gieringer, director of California NORML, a pro-legalization group.