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Where Land And Water Meet

Author: Nancy Langston
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295989831
Size: 77.85 MB
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Water and land interrelate in surprising and ambiguous ways, and riparian zones, where land and water meet, have effects far outside their boundaries. Using the Malheur Basin in southeastern Oregon as a case study, this intriguing and nuanced book explores the ways people have envisioned boundaries between water and land, the ways they have altered these places, and the often unintended results. The Malheur Basin, once home to the largest cattle empires in the world, experienced unintended widespread environmental degradation in the late nineteenth and early twentieth centuries. After establishment in 1908 of Malheur National Wildlife Refuge as a protected breeding ground for migratory birds, and its expansion in the 1930s and 1940s, the area experienced equally extreme intended modifications aimed at restoring riparian habitat. Refuge managers ditched wetlands, channelized rivers, applied Agent Orange and rotenone to waterways, killed beaver, and cut down willows. Where Land and Water Meet examines the reasoning behind and effects of these interventions, gleaning lessons from their successes and failures. Although remote and specific, the Malheur Basin has myriad ecological and political connections to much larger places. This detailed look at one tangled history of riparian restoration shows how�through appreciation of the complexity of environmental and social influences on land use, and through effective handling of conflict�people can learn to practice a style of pragmatic adaptive resource management that avoids rigid adherence to single agendas and fosters improved relationships with the land.

Forest Dreams Forest Nightmares

Author: Nancy Langston
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 9780295989686
Size: 55.25 MB
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Across the inland West, forests that once seemed like paradise have turned into an ecological nightmare. Fires, insect epidemics, and disease now threaten millions of acres of once-bountiful forests. Yet no one can agree what went wrong. Was it too much management�or not enough�that forced the forests of the inland West to the verge of collapse? Is the solution more logging, or no logging at all? In this gripping work of scientific and historical detection, Nancy Langston unravels the disturbing history of what went wrong with the western forests, despite the best intentions of those involved. Focusing on the Blue Mountains of northeastern Oregon and southeastern Washington, she explores how the complex landscapes that so impressed settlers in the nineteenth century became an ecological disaster in the late twentieth. Federal foresters, intent on using their scientific training to stop exploitation and waste, suppressed light fires in the ponderosa pinelands. Hoping to save the forests, they could not foresee that their policies would instead destroy what they loved. When light fires were kept out, a series of ecological changes began. Firs grew thickly in forests once dominated by ponderosa pines, and when droughts hit, those firs succumbed to insects, diseases, and eventually catastrophic fires. Nancy Langston combines remarkable skills as both scientist and writer of history to tell this story. Her ability to understand and bring to life the complex biological processes of the forest is matched by her grasp of the human forces at work�from Indians, white settlers, missionaries, fur trappers, cattle ranchers, sheep herders, and railroad builders to timber industry and federal forestry managers. The book will be of interest to a wide audience of environmentalists, historians, ecologists, foresters, ranchers, and loggers�and all people who want to understand the changing lands of the West.

Landscapes Of Promise

Author: William G. Robbins
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 9780295989693
Size: 53.24 MB
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Landscapes of Promise is the first comprehensive environmental history of the early years of a state that has long been associated with environmental protection. Covering the period from early human habitation to the end of World War II, William Robbins shows that the reality of Oregon's environmental history involves far more than a discussion of timber cutting and land-use planning. Robbins demonstrates that ecological change is not only a creation of modern industrial society. Native Americans altered their environment in a number of ways, including the planned annual burning of grasslands and light-burning of understory forest debris. Early Euro-American settlers who thought they were taming a virgin wilderness were merely imposing a new set of alterations on an already modified landscape. Beginning with the first 18th-century traders on the Pacific Coast, alterations to Oregon's landscape were closely linked to the interests of global market forces. Robbins uses period speeches and publications to document the increasing commodification of the landscape and its products. "Environment melts before the man who is in earnest," wrote one Oregon booster in 1905, reflecting prevailing ways of thinking. In an impressive synthesis of primary sources and historical analysis, Robbins traces the transformation of the Oregon landscape and the evolution of our attitudes toward the natural world.

Seeking Refuge

Author: Robert M Wilson
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295800070
Size: 62.67 MB
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Each fall and spring, millions of birds travel the Pacific Flyway, the westernmost of the four major North American bird migration routes. The landscapes they cross vary from wetlands to farmland to concrete, inhabited not only by wildlife but also by farmers, suburban families, and major cities. In the twentieth century, farmers used the wetlands to irrigate their crops, transforming the landscape and putting migratory birds at risk. The U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service responded by establishing a series of refuges that stretched from northern Washington to southern California. What emerged from these efforts was a hybrid environment, where the distinctions between irrigated farms and wildlife refuges blurred. Management of the refuges was fraught with conflicting priorities and practices. Farmers and refuge managers harassed birds with shotguns and flares to keep them off private lands, and government pilots took to the air, dropping hand grenades among flocks of geese and herding the startled birds into nearby refuges. Such actions masked the growing connections between refuges and the land around them. Seeking Refuge examines the development and management of refuges in the wintering range of migratory birds along the Pacific Flyway. Although this is a history of efforts to conserve migratory birds, the story Robert Wilson tells has considerable salience today. Many of the key places migratory birds use � the Klamath Basin, California�s Central Valley, the Salton Sea � are sites of recent contentious debates over water use. Migratory birds connect and depend on these landscapes, and farmers face pressure as water is reallocated from irrigation to other purposes. In a time when global warming promises to compound the stresses on water and migratory species, Seeking Refuge demonstrates the need to foster landscapes where both wildlife and people can thrive.

Ports In A Storm

Author: John D. Donahue
Publisher: Brookings Institution Press
ISBN: 0815722370
Size: 60.89 MB
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Recounts the efforts of U.S. Coast Guard Commander Suzanne Englebert in the wake of 9/11 to revamp the system for protecting America's ports. Original.

Natural Visions

Author: Finis Dunaway
Publisher: University of Chicago Press
ISBN: 022645424X
Size: 16.43 MB
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Walden Pond. The Grand Canyon.Yosemite National Park. Throughout the twentieth century, photographers and filmmakers created unforgettable images of these and other American natural treasures. Many of these images, including the work of Ansel Adams, continue to occupy a prominent place in the American imagination. Making these representations, though, was more than a purely aesthetic project. In fact, portraying majestic scenes and threatened places galvanized concern for the environment and its protection. Natural Visions documents through images the history of environmental reform from the Progressive era to the first Earth Day celebration in 1970, showing the crucial role the camera played in the development of the conservation movement. In Natural Visions, Finis Dunaway tells the story of how visual imagery—such as wilderness photographs, New Deal documentary films, and Sierra Club coffee-table books—shaped modern perceptions of the natural world. By examining the relationship between the camera and environmental politics through detailed studies of key artists and activists, Dunaway captures the emotional and spiritual meaning that became associated with the American landscape. Throughout the book, he reveals how photographers and filmmakers adapted longstanding traditions in American culture—the Puritan jeremiad, the romantic sublime, and the frontier myth—to literally picture nature as a place of grace for the individual and the nation. Beautifully illustrated with photographs by Ansel Adams, Eliot Porter, and a host of other artists, Natural Visions will appeal to a wide range of readers interested in American cultural history, the visual arts, and environmentalism.

Quagmire

Author: David Andrew Biggs
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295801549
Size: 51.17 MB
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Winner of the 2012 George Perkins Marsh Prize for Best Book in Environmental History In the twentieth century, the Mekong Delta has emerged as one of Vietnam�s most important economic regions. Its swamps, marshes, creeks, and canals have played a major role in Vietnam�s turbulent past, from the struggles of colonialism to the Cold War and the present day. Quagmire considers these struggles, their antecedents, and their legacies through the lens of environmental history. Beginning with the French conquest in the 1860s, colonial reclamation schemes and pacification efforts centered on the development of a dense network of new canals to open land for agriculture. These projects helped precipitate economic and environmental crises in the 1930s, and subsequent struggles after 1945 led to the balkanization of the delta into a patchwork of regions controlled by the Viet Minh, paramilitary religious sects, and the struggling Franco-Vietnamese government. After 1954, new settlements were built with American funds and equipment in a crash program intended to solve continuing economic and environmental problems. Finally, the American military collapse in Vietnam is revealed as not simply a failure of policy makers but also a failure to understand the historical, political, and environmental complexity of the spaces American troops attempted to occupy and control. By exploring the delta as a quagmire in both natural and political terms, Biggs shows how engineered transformations of the Mekong Delta landscape - channelized rivers, a complex canal system, hydropower development, deforestation - have interacted with equally complex transformations in the geopolitics of the region. Quagmire delves beyond common stereotypes to present an intricate, rich history that shows how closely political and ecological issues are intertwined in the human interactions with the water environment in the Mekong Delta. Watch the book trailer: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gp1-UItZqsk

Games Against Nature

Author: Robert Harms
Publisher: Cambridge University Press
ISBN: 9780521655354
Size: 12.47 MB
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In this book, Robert Harms makes an important advance toward recovering the history of the people of the rain forest by telling the story of the Nunu, who live in and around swampy floodplains of the middle Zaire River. Using concepts drawn from game theory, Professor Harms explores the changing relationship between nature and culture among the Nunu. Picturing Nunu society as animated by a never-ending competition among lineages and households, he traces how the competition pushed people into new environments, and how adaption to the new environment, in turn, led to new forms of competition.

Aryan Cowboys

Author: Evelyn A. Schlatter
Publisher: University of Texas Press
ISBN: 9780292774841
Size: 30.67 MB
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During the last third of the twentieth century, white supremacists moved, both literally and in the collective imagination, from midnight rides through Mississippi to broadband-wired cabins in Montana. But while rural Montana may be on the geographical fringe of the country, white supremacist groups were not pushed there, and they are far from "fringe elements" of society, as many Americans would like to believe. Evelyn Schlatter's startling analysis describes how many of the new white supremacist groups in the West have co-opted the region's mythology and environment based on longstanding beliefs about American character and Manifest Destiny to shape an organic, home-grown movement. Dissatisfied with the urbanized, culturally progressive coasts, disenfranchised by affirmative action and immigration, white supremacists have found new hope in the old ideal of the West as a land of opportunity waiting to be settled by self-reliant traditional families. Some even envision the region as a potential white homeland. Groups such as Aryan Nations, The Order, and Posse Comitatus use controversial issues such as affirmative action, anti-Semitism, immigration, and religion to create sympathy for their extremist views among mainstream whites—while offering a "solution" in the popular conception of the West as a place of freedom, opportunity, and escape from modern society. Aryan Cowboys exposes the exclusionist message of this "American" ideal, while documenting its dangerous appeal.

On The Road Again

Author: William Wyckoff
Publisher: University of Washington Press
ISBN: 0295802324
Size: 19.82 MB
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In On the Road Again, William Wyckoff explores Montana�s changing physical and cultural landscape by pairing photographs taken by state highway engineers in the 1920s and 1930s with photographs taken at the same sites today. The older photographs, preserved in the archives of the Montana Historical Society, were intended to document the expenditure of federal highway funds. Because it is nearly impossible to photograph a road without also photographing the landscape through which that road passes, these images contain a wealth of information about the state�s environment during the early decades of the twentieth century. To highlight landscape changes -- and continuities -- over more than eighty years, Wyckoff chose fifty-eight documented locations and traveled to each to photograph the exact same view. The pairs of old and new photos and accompanying interpretive essays presented here tell a vivid story of physical, cultural, and economic change. Wyckoff has grouped his selections to cover a fairly even mix of views from the eastern and western parts of the state, including a wide assortment of land use settings and rural and urban landscapes. The photo pairs are organized in thirteen �visual themes,� such as forested areas, open spaces, and sacred spaces, which parallel landscape change across the entire American West. A close, thoughtful look at these photographs reveals how crops, fences, trees, and houses shape the everyday landscape, both in the first quarter of the twentieth century and in the present. The photographs offer an intimate view into Montana, into how Montana has changed in the past eighty years and how it may continue to change in the twenty-first century. This is a book that will captivate readers who have, or hope to have, a tie to the Montana countryside, whether as resident or visitor. Regional and agricultural historians, geographers and geologists, and rural and urban planners will all find it fascinating.