WUI in the News

Here you can find current news articles about wildland-urban interface issues in the U.S. and abroad. Please note that while Interface South maintains news archives for reference, the links may no longer be active. You may need to contact the source or host website for more information.

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Nov 2008 contains 9 News Articles.

Principles of New Suburbanism
EcoWorld - 24 Nov 2008
The essense of New Suburbanism is to support a clean, but wider human footprint - which is anathema to much of conventional environmentalist wisdom. In many parts of the world, such as within the state of California, there is abundant space. California, especially within its vast interior, has hundreds upon thousands of virtually vacant square miles of rolling foothills, rangeland, forests, farms and fields. The Golden State is a whopping 158,000 square miles in size, with only 36 million people, most of them already crammed quite amicably within reasonably dense urban areas. California will always have plenty of available land, and the mantra that the personal residences of humans must be consigned to ever higher densities is not natural law or indisputably moral. A wider human footprint is not necessarily anathema to the health of the environment.

Urban Growers Go High-Tech to Feed City Dwellers
Associated Press - 21 Nov 2008
Terry Fujimoto sees the future of agriculture in the exposed roots of the leafy greens he and his students grow in thin streams of water at a campus greenhouse. The program run by the California State Polytechnic University agriculture professor is part of a growing effort to use hydroponics ' a method of cultivating plants in water instead of soil ' to bring farming into cities, where consumers are concentrated.

Urban Trees Enhance Water Infiltration
Newswise - 21 Nov 2008
The management of stormwater in urban areas is often focused on restoring the hydrologic cycle disrupted by extensive pavement and compacted urban soils, but now a group of researchers have been investigating innovative ways to maximize the potential of trees to address stormwater. The development of structural soil reservoirs may provide new opportunities for meeting engineering, environmental, and greenspace management needs in urban areas.

Greener Neighborhoods Better for Kids' Waistlines
American Journal of Preventive Medicine - 19 Nov 2008
Children living in city neighborhoods with higher "greenness" ratings seem to gain less weight over time than their counterparts living in areas with less green space, a new study suggests. Having greener surroundings was associated with lower body weight changes in the children, regardless of other residential density characteristics of the neighborhood.

Goats might be firefighters of the future
The Daily Courier - 19 Nov 2008
Wildfire is the most common natural threat in the Prescott Basin. Rod and Tanya Baker think they've found a great option with their goats, and they're already starting to convince local fire officials. Because of the proximity to homes, prescribed burning often is not an option for reducing overgrown vegetation in the WUI. The goats don't create smoke like prescribed burns and don't make noise like chainsaws. Prescott Area Wildland/Urban Interface Commission (PAWUIC) is working on a three-month pilot project to see whether the goats can be a cost-effective tool in the Prescott Basin.

Global biodiversity panel knocked back at UN talks
Agence France-Presse - 14 Nov 2008
Plans for a scientific panel on biodiversity, similar to a Nobel-winning group on climate change, have been knocked back by representatives of 80 countries at UN-sponsored talks.Government officials and representatives of 129 organizations held a three-day conference in Malaysia to discuss the need for an Intergovernmental Science-Policy Platform on Biodiversity and Ecosystem Services (IPBES).

Pine Beetles: Out of the Forest, Into the City
University of British Columbia - 12 Nov 2008
Mountain pine beetles are sweeping through British Columbia's vast forests with highly destructive results, but their mass attacks don't stop at the edge of town. Working in one of B.C.'s latest beetle battlegrounds -- the city of Kelowna -- UBC Okanagan biologist Bob Lalonde and mathematician Rebecca Tyson are combining their expertise to track how the mountain pine beetle spreads through an urban landscape during a mass infestation. Although extensive research has been done on the mountain pine beetle in a forest setting, there is very little information on how they work their way through a city, says Lalonde, Associate Professor of Biology and Physical Geography.

Urban sprawl, disappearing species hinder small-game hunters
Pittsburg Tribune-Review - 7 Nov 2008
According to the state Game Commission, the number of small -game hunters has declined for the past 25 years, reaching a new low each year. In 1983, 739,000 rabbit hunters registered with the state and shot 2.16 million rabbits, Game Commission statistics show. By 2007, that number had fallen to 136,000 hunters and 418,000 kills. Gary Fujak, one of Allegheny County's three state Game Commission wildlife conservation officers, said part of the decline in small-game hunters rests with suburban sprawl eating up natural woodlands habitat.

The Experience of Community Residents in a Fire-Prone Ecosystem: A Case Study on the San Bernardino National Forest
United States Department of Agriculture - 5 Nov 2008
This report presents results from a study of San Bernardino National Forest community residents' experiences with and perceptions of fire, fire management, and the Forest Service. Using self-administered surveys and focus group discussions, we found that participants had personal experiences with fire, were concerned about fire, and felt knowledgeable about effective fire management. Consideration of future consequences, a measure of time orientation, was not found to be related to beliefs about and reactions to wildfire. Trust in the Forest Service was related to a number of fire-associated attitudes. Findings help shed light on the experiences of residents living in fire-prone communities and highlight the importance of trust in understanding public perceptions about fire management.