President George W. Bush lifted the presidential oil moratorium on new drilling leases that his father put in place in 1990, hoping that Congress would be inspired to lift its moratorium issued in 1982. If Congress does not follow suit, the president’s decision will have little effect. Congressmember Lois Capps released a statement saying, “We simply cannot drill our way to energy independence : Congress can and should reject this bad idea.”

The county’s departments of Air Pollution Control and Health advised residents in Goleta, especially, to avoid using leaf-blowers to clean up ash deposits from the Gap Fire. They recommended washing the ash into soil.

Entymologist Brian Cabrera, who works in the Agriculture Commissioner’s Office for the County of Santa Barbara, advised people not to react to California oak caterpillar’s recent population boom by “freaking out and spraying the ground with broad-spectrum pesticides.” The creepy crawly hordes have been attacking every eight to 12 years for millennia, he said, and healthy trees have no trouble recovering. (/oakmothsok)


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