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Author Topic: The Environment  (Read 529 times)
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« on: April 16, 2007, 09:11:50 PM »

Discuss the latest environmental news.
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sevrox
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« Reply #1 on: August 22, 2007, 11:21:57 AM »

There is no environment. We don't need it.
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Donotremove
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« Reply #2 on: August 22, 2007, 12:02:42 PM »

Sevrox, you make that statement to 1) just post to build up your numbers to get off the Newbie list, 2) to be provocative in hopes of initiating discussion, 3) you really believe that.

Which is it?
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barton
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« Reply #3 on: August 23, 2007, 10:25:14 AM »

I have been a newbie myself and am keenly aware how much (1) is always a factor.  However, I think there might be a number (4) here, i.e. "an idle jest." 

Clearly, we are dependent, utterly, on the biosphere and it is vital to maintain its health.  Since there really is no debating the fundamental reality, I think the average citizen may simply not have a sense of where to begin in dealing with all the issues involved with the provenance of nourishing food, potable water, breathable air, and an ambience that includes some of that wildness that refreshes the soul.  If there is one key issue, it might be population control.

Without it, every other effort to make the planet livable is undermined by the grim reality of mathematics. 
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« Reply #4 on: August 23, 2007, 12:03:27 PM »

Barton, thanks for suggesting that "4th" option.  I hadn't considered it.  I wasn't intending to be a smart-ass.  I was hoping to engage Sevrox.

I'm reading Blessed Unrest, a survey/assay/essay by Paul Hawken about the myriad groups, formal, ad hoc, that have grown up--all over the world--around the "environmental and social justice movements."  I was interested to discover that Emerson fell away from the church while in Paris and became an adherent of the connectedness of man/nature and, as such, influenced Thoureau, Ghandi, Martin Luther King, to mention only some of the more famous persons.  I had always coupled Emerson with Jonathan Edwards.  My bad.

It is strange (so strange that my mind almost refuses to believe it) that in the 21st Century some of us humans can still toodle about our business and deny (sometimes by just ignoring) that everything forms part of a whole, which is our world, and that there are some bad guys out there seriously messing (with foreknowdge) with the "wholeness" in exchange for money.
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« Reply #5 on: August 23, 2007, 02:40:37 PM »

Sevrox is a chemistry/physics teacher who is a devout environmentalist - enough to have a "Recycling Club" in the school in which he teaches.

He's come close to blowing up SUVs in California, except living on the East Coast preempts him from doing that.
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« Reply #6 on: August 23, 2007, 05:44:57 PM »

Sevrox,  Smiley

Warning: This post has been modified for times of Ed Begley show.

Have you ever watched Ed Begley Jr's Living With Ed on the HGTV channel?  The second set of shows begins Monday Aug 27, at 10:30 PM Eastern, with two preview shows, Aug 26, Sept 2, at 10:00 PM Eastern (both these are Sundays).  Begley is a long time smallest footprint environmentaist and his modest home is as green as he can make it.  Being an actor Begley has many friends among the rich and famous and I understand some of these will be featured on the new shows.  Begley is rather strident--but has a sense of humor--mitigated by his long suffering wife.  Give the program a looksee if you have time.

Welcome to Elba.
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barton
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« Reply #7 on: August 24, 2007, 01:58:46 PM »

Sev,

do you always talk about yourself in the third person?

You're not Bob Dole incognito, are you?


:-)
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« Reply #8 on: August 26, 2007, 10:12:30 PM »

No, I'm relatively first-person omniscient. I'll have to look out for the Ed Begley show. Thanks for the info and thanks for the welcome. I'll be checking in from time to time - don't get a whole lotta time to post when real life kicks in as in the New School Year Getting Underway.
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« Reply #9 on: August 29, 2007, 05:07:29 PM »

Environment footprints:

   "Unlike indigenous cultures, whose worlds are local, intimate, familar, we live in an age of giants.  In one day alone we pump 85 million barrels of petroleum out of the ground, and then burn it up.  And on the same day we spew the waste of 27 billion pounds of coal into the atmosphere.  One hundred million displaced people now wander the earth without a home.  One company, Wal-Mart, employs 1.8 million people.  ExxonMobil made nearly 40 billion in profits in 2006, enough money to permanently supply pur clean drinking water to the i billion people who lack it.  We have consumed 90 percent of all the big fish in the oceans.  Bill Gates' home covers one and a half acres and cost nearly $100 million."  From Blessed Unrest by Paul Hawken.
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liquidsilver
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« Reply #10 on: September 07, 2007, 10:51:49 AM »

It may be bad manners, but it's also necessary: Every 40 seconds or so, a cow burps. Scientists are now scrambling to make them burp less – not to make more polite cows, but a cooler planet.

As cows digest their food (up to 150 pounds of grass, hay, and silage per day, along with 20 pounds of concentrated feed), myriad microorganisms – bacteria, protozoa, fungi, and archaea – busily break down the fibers and other nutrients in their rumens. In the process, hydrogen and carbon dioxide are released. The archaea (a kind of bacteria) transform the two gases into methane (CH4), up to 100 gallons of it per cow per day, and the cows get rid of it mainly by burping.


http://www.csmonitor.com/2007/0816/p13s01-sten.html
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« Reply #11 on: September 07, 2007, 12:11:11 PM »

Hot dog, Liquid.  That's a nasty bit of news--100 gallons of methane per day?--that briefly excites the mind.  How could we harness all that methane?  Nah.  Cows hooked up to collection stations most of the time would bring out all the animal rights folks.
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« Reply #12 on: September 07, 2007, 12:13:40 PM »

Thank god the cows have yet to discover the power of the bean!
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barton
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« Reply #13 on: September 09, 2007, 01:56:28 PM »

Tasty vegetarian food is now available most everywhere.   If you don't eat meat, demand for livestock drops, and the result is less methane burping.  (and liberating vast quantities of clean water, corn that could feed people or cars, etc.)

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« Reply #14 on: September 09, 2007, 02:36:44 PM »

Bush the Younger is already making serious mischief with the future by having staff people work up the wording for presidential directives (that all presidents make at the end of their term) AND working up a little goodie that will make it harder for the next president and congress to undo his little poison pills.

Look for more blasting in the Smokies, for coal, and dumping the waste in valleys and streams. Other energy rulings will, of course, benefit the energy companies.  Check out the article, above the fold, in today's online NYT. 
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