frauenfelder at March 13th, 2014 14:12 — #1
ratel at March 13th, 2014 14:23 — #2
If it's anything like the one I saw in the East Bay (location undisclosed), it might well be small enough to transplant, although I'm sure something like that is unbelievably fragile.
Edit: it's not a pure albino, and it sounds like it's possible but extremely hard to move:
Standing 52-feet tall, the tree features a unique mixture of normal green leaves and white, albino sections. It's believed to be the largest of its kind on the planet.
imb at March 13th, 2014 14:57 — #3
It's difficult to see from the photo and the article didn't seem to address it, but why can't the tracks be shifted away from the tree? I understand they are looking to move the tree, but then its survival may be ify.
brainspore at March 13th, 2014 15:02 — #4
"Chopping down rare redwood trees to make way for railroads" is so 1885.
dacree at March 13th, 2014 15:14 — #5
I just don't understand the talk of taking clippings or moving the tree. Why is it that the rail is impossible to move?
jons at March 13th, 2014 15:24 — #6
Because reasons! And freedom!
shash at March 13th, 2014 15:39 — #7
Typically, they try to make the straightest railway line they can. They may just be reluctant to shift it because of that.
brainspore at March 13th, 2014 15:49 — #8
Devil's advocate argument: any sizable detour would increase both the resources required for constructing the track and the carbon footprint of every train that used it, so the overall environmental impact of each option is worth consideration.
But yeah. I still hope it doesn't get cut down.
wrecksdart at March 13th, 2014 16:09 — #9
Move it? Pish posh. I understand we've got a young lady down here in Florida who is quite adept at removing trees, especially the old rare ones.
bizmail_public at March 13th, 2014 16:22 — #10
A fair question
- Resource expenditure.
Trains are big, heavy things that want to move in straight lines. This is why the are so fuel-efficient. When they turn, they want to turn in big, broad arcs. Compare an automobile turning at a street intersection to any train track you have ever seen.
So "moving" the track to spare the tree would be a large scale engineering effort -- I would guess that at least a mile track would have to be realigned, and probably more.
This particular tree may be so valuable that an expensive realignment may be the right thing to do -- I don't know. But understand even a "small" realignment of the rails is a Very Big Deal.
dacree at March 13th, 2014 16:31 — #11
I agree, it would be difficult - just not as difficult as finding a tree that rare. There are hundreds of thousands of miles of track and only 10 of these trees known.
etherist at March 13th, 2014 16:50 — #12
a) no closeup of albino leaves?
b) how far is it from the tracks?
skr1 at March 13th, 2014 17:02 — #13
Gah, you had to quote the bit with the typo. It is not a chimero, whatever the hell that would be. It is a chimera, which is a plant with cells expressing different genes.
Also, some people have been clamoring that they should just clone it. Well, depending on the the type of chimera it is, this may or may not be possible with retention of the interesting genetic trait. Also, an albino chimera will grow very very slowly so it would take a long time to get to that size.
kiptw at March 13th, 2014 17:10 — #14
They haven't even built the tracks yet! Why is it impossible to design the whole thing a few yards to one side? Will they miss a bridge?
bizmail_public at March 13th, 2014 17:34 — #15
You're confusing different kinds of "difficult."
Finding the occurrence of the integer "1241482198192234845" somewhere in your computer's memory would be rare, and therefore difficult. But finding such an integer would be a lousy reason to re-route a train track.
The fact that train tracks exist in other places is irrelevant. This about putting a train station in the town of Cotati itself, using an existing rail line. Moving the rail line inside an existing town is hugely expensive -- somewhere between several million dollars and tens of of millions of dollars, depending on the price of Cotati real estate.
Perhaps this tree is important enough that moving the rail line or canceling the station is the right decision. But the fact of the tree's rarity is insufficient justification.
bizmail_public at March 13th, 2014 17:36 — #16
Yes, the rail line already exists. Google Maps and Google Streetview show the railway clearly (East Cotati Ave. and Santero Way in Cotati, CA)
The proposed construction is for upgrading the tracks to the safety standards for commuter rail, and to build a small station. As I've posted elsewhere, moving an existing rail line within an urban area is hugely expensive.
crenquis at March 13th, 2014 17:48 — #17
Well, they are calling this the New Gilded Age...
kiptw at March 13th, 2014 17:52 — #18
I stand corrected. That's quite different.
brainspore at March 13th, 2014 17:56 — #19
A pure albino might be even more difficult to move because that would also mean transplanting the host tree it was joined to. (True albino redwoods don't produce chlorophyll and can only survive as parasites.)
lightningwaltz at March 13th, 2014 18:19 — #20
It is a shame a rare organism is on the chopping block and the reasons are about money and efficiency. Then again, re-aligning the tracks too accommodate this one rare tree would mean countless other non-rare trees will forfeit their hold on terra firma.
The need of the many, out way the few. cue Spock /img
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