Rare redwood faces chopping block in California

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(From: WikiMedia.org)
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Updated: 3/12 6:34 am

COTATI, Calif. (AP) -- It's a tree so rare that there are only 10 of its kind in the world, and it could be chopped down to make way for commuter trains in Northern California.

The Santa Rosa Press Democrat reports preservationists are hoping to raise public awareness and save the albino chimero coast redwood growing in the small Sonoma County town of Cotati.

Sonoma-Marin Area Rail Transit officials say it's out of their hands, that federal regulators have determined the 52-foot tree must come down for safety reasons. The genetically mutated redwood is apparently too close to a proposed set of new tracks.

But scientists and others are urging local politicians to consider a plan to move the rare genetic specimen to Cotati-owned land nearby.

Arborist Tom Stapleton says the tree is "irreplaceable."

©2014 Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten, or redistributed.

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