911 calls released from fatal Twisp fire: ‘The fire is headed right towards my house!’

Originally posted on Q13 FOX News:

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TWISP, Wash. — For the first time, we’re hearing 911 calls from the fire near Twisp — messages for help in the moments three firefighters lost their lives.

As the fire spreads, you can hear chaos erupt as the calls get more frequent.

“There`s a fire on Wood Creek heading up the hill. I just looked out my window and the fire is headed right towards my house!” one 911 caller said.

That August afternoon, the Okanogan Complex Fire was on its way to becoming the biggest in state history. Evacuation orders were soon to follow.

“Wind shifted and he wants Level 3 evacuations for Twisp,” one first responded says to another, referring to the level of mandatory evacuations.

On August 19, the fire’s flames went from threatening to deadly.

“One firefighter or multiple? No confirmation yet on firefighters. Wind shifted again, heading toward Twisp,” a 911…

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Okanogan wildfire grows by 22 square miles; at least 94 homes and cabins destroyed

Originally posted on Q13 FOX News:

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SPOKANE, Wash. (AP) — The largest wildfire in Washington state history grew by more than 22 square miles overnight, and firefighters are worried about high winds predicted for this weekend.

The Okanogan Complex of wildfires was listed at 472 square miles on Friday morning, after windy conditions Thursday pushed the fire on a couple of runs. It is only 12 percent contained.

Officials say the fire has destroyed at least 45 primary residences, 49 cabins and 60 outbuildings. Three firefighters died battling the fire last week, and a memorial service for them is planned for Sunday in Wenatchee.

Fire spokeswoman Sierra Hellstrom says temperatures are lower and humidity higher on Friday, which is good news for firefighters. But thunderstorms with high winds predicted for this weekend could fan the flames.

Okanogan County Fires issued mandatory evacuation orders Friday afternoon for those living in the north, middle and…

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Dozens of wild horses found dead in Soda Fire aftermath

BOISE, Idaho (KBOI) — More than a dozen wild horses have died in the Soda Fire in Owyhee County, BLM officials say.

The 27 horses were found by a team of BLM employees and a veterinarian who were checking on the herd’s condition. A gate was opened, but they were overtaken by fire before they could leave the area.

“Due to the severe and erratic nature of the fire, we anticipate there will be more horses that were injured as they tried to escape the fire,” said Jenifer Arnold, acting BLM district manager Jenifer Arnold. “It’s a terrible reality for wildlife, livestock and wild horses living on the range, to be overtaken by an intense, wind-drive range fire.”

In addition, two horses were euthanized because of severe injuries.

Three herds, which have more than 200 horses, have been affected by the Soda Fire.

BLM workers have hauled in hay and most of the horses have been able to find water. In the longterm, however, BLM said the horses will be cared for off the range until they can return when conditions improve.


Everything We Ever Believed Is Wrong

Originally posted on Armory of the Revolution:

WRONGOnce we realize that all sentient life is equally valuable, a remarkable thing happens.

We gain a perspective that is totally revolutionary.

Everything we formerly thought, believed, experienced, and were taught, turns out to have been wrong.

We find we are at odds with almost all of humanity, with every government on Earth, with all major religions and most of the minor ones.

If all life is equally precious, every human legal system is a fraud. Every government is complicit in murder, every person who eats meat, who hunts, who supports animal exploitation and murder industries is a criminal.

Morality and law are human inventions. Not surprisingly, they always favor humans.

There are no such things as law or morality in nature. But if we believe that all sentient life is equally valuable we arrive at standards that can be considered universal law and universal morality.

We must step outside…

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Seafloor Methane Begins to Melt Off Washington State Coast

Originally posted on Jagadees's English Weblog:

Warming of the Pacific Ocean off Washington state could destabilize methane deposits on the seafloor and trigger a release of the greenhouse gas to the atmosphere, according to a new study published in Geophysical Research Letters.

At issue are methane hydrates, which are complexes of methane trapped in frozen ice buried in ocean beds. The hydrates are found throughout the world’s oceans and are maintained by cool water and immense pressures. But as the oceans warm, the hydrates get destabilized and methane is released.

Methane is a significant greenhouse gas, with a global warming potential 86 times as potent as CO2 on a 20-year time scale. Some scientists worry that a significant release from the oceans could exacerbate climate change.

“Methane hydrates are a very large and fragile reservoir of carbon that can be released if temperatures change,” Evan Soloman, a researcher at the University of Washington, said in a…

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Animal Lovers: Don’t Hesitate to Feel Your Hate

Exposing the Big Game:

If it’s not okay to hate the people who kill your friends for sport, who can you hate? And don’t think for a second that hunters, no matter how the schmooze, don’t hate you or anyone who might be out to spoil their fun by trying to ban contest hunts, or otherwise exposing their sadism.

Originally posted on Exposing the Big Game:

Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2014. All Rights Reserved Text and Wildlife Photography ©Jim Robertson, 2014. All Rights Reserved

Living in Earth’s out-of-the-way places, surrounded by prime wildlife habitat (as I’ve always chosen to do), an advocate must eventually make a choice—either stand with your wildlife friends, or join in the “fun” (made increasingly more popular by repulsive “reality” shows like Duck Dynasty and so many evil others) and go around shooting everything you see.

I made my choice long ago and decided the only way to live in such a wildlife-war-torn area is to have as little to do with the people as possible. To quote Sea Shepherd’s Captain Paul Watson, referring to his native land, coastal New Brunswick, Canada (where clubbing baby seals is the local pastime), “Love the country, hate the people.”

Author Farley Mowat, another selfless Canadian animal advocate in league with Captain Watson, ultimately came around to that same sentiment in A Whale for…

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It’s Hard to Be Ethically Consistent While Tap-Dancing on Eggshells

Exposing the Big Game:

My objection to hunting, trapping and seal clubbing is colorblind as well as culture-blind. I oppose cruelty to animals, no matter who is doing the shooting, trapping or clubbing. A victim doesn’t suffer any less because of the ethnicity or cultural beliefs of their executioner. An animal’s right to a life, free from harm, trumps anyone’s right to exploit or kill them

Originally posted on Exposing the Big Game:

Over the weekend I received the following question, which I’ll attempt to answer below…

Dear Mr. Robertson,

I was wondering your opinion on the subject of animal rights vs. the rights of indigenous people. What do you think about hunting by Native American tribes, or the hunting of seals by the Inuit? Also, of course, the various other tribes around the world that have their culture based off of hunting. What do you think about their participation in hunting, trapping, etc?

Hmmm, one of those questions…one of those I-wouldn’t-touch-that-with-a-ten-foot-pole kind of questions. Do I risk being called a hypocrite, or “culturally elite?” I could spend all day tip-toeing around this—tap-dancing on egg shells—but here’s an answer just off the top of my head:

My objection to hunting, trapping and seal clubbing is colorblind as well as culture-blind. I oppose cruelty to animals, no matter who is doing the shooting, trapping…

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Warning: This Blog Will Offend If Animals Are Not Your Priority

Originally posted on Armory of the Revolution:

futureThere are animal people who love animals, but do not quite love them enough.

They don’t love them quite enough to stop eating them. Or to stop wearing them.
The animals certainly welcome whatever things people do for them, as the great majority do not do anything for animals.

So one who rescues a dog but eats a calf is still better then someone who does nothing for a dog in need and who still eats a calf.

But this blog is not aimed at casual animal rescuers or half-hearted animal activists.

Most animal activists are not vegans. Most aren’t even vegetarians. Most are people who love animals, but animals are not the most important things in their lives. Religion, politics, family, personal interests come first.

This blog is not for them.

This blog is for the animal activist who is the backbone of the movement, the activist who…

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Less Smoke Could Mean More Fire in Washington State

Originally posted on TIME:

(TWISP, Wash.) — The massive cloud of smoke is expected to lift over Washington wildfires on Sunday, but as air quality improves fire behavior could become more erratic and intense, fire officials said.

“It’s like a flu opening in a fireplace,” explained Suzanne Flory, spokeswoman for the U.S. Forest Service and the Rocky Mountain Incident Management Team. “Smoke serves as a cap on the fire.”

The Okanogan Complex of wildfires was measured at 374 square miles Sunday morning, after growing more than 100 miles larger Saturday in what fire officials said was a relatively calm fire day.

Sunday was expected to be a different story. Once the smoke lifts, humidity drops, heat rises and fires flare up.

The good news is that less smoke means restrictions on air travel will be lifted and more fire tankers can drop water and chemical retardant, Flory said.

Air quality, which has been dangerously…

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