Nov 30, 2006
"The Great Lakes basin is one of the most important freshwater ecosystems on the planet - holding one fifth of the world's freshwater," said the report's author Dr. Elaine MacDonald. "Yet, the 20 cities we evaluated are dumping the equivalent of more than 100 Olympic swimming pools full of raw sewage directly into the Great Lakes every single day."
The Great Lakes Sewage Report Card is the first ecosystem survey and analysis of municipal sewage treatment and sewage discharges in the Great Lakes basin.
The report grades cities on issues such as collection, treatment and disposal of sewage based on information provided by each municipality.
The report documents that many cities in the region have antiquated systems for collecting and treating sewage and regularly release untreated sewage into local waterways.
MacDonald estimated that the 20 cities evaluated, representing a third of the region's 35 million people, dump more than 90 billion liters (23.7 billion gallons) of untreated sewage into the Great Lakes each year.
Signs like this warn of polluted stormwater that is discharged into the Great Lakes. (Photo courtesy City of St. Joseph, Missouri)
Thanks for link - http://www.ens-newswire.com
Original blog item pull by comments from: odiyya The Conscious
Nov 29, 2006
Nov 28, 2006
As a former certified Environmental Site Assessor & Tank Inspector Installer.... I find it hard to believe the EPA can not ask DCOMM for a FREE draft of inspections guidelines.
Nov 27, 2006
| In the early 21st century, it's become clear that air pollution can significantly reduce the amount of sunlight reaching Earth, lower temperatures, and mask the warming effects of greenhouse gases. Climate researcher James Hansen estimates that "global dimming" is cooling our planet by more than a degree Celsius (1.8°F) and fears that as we cut back on pollution, global warming may escalate to a point of no return. Regrettably, in terms of possibly taking corrective action, our current understanding of global dimming has been a long time in the coming, considering the first hints of the phenomenon date back to 18th-century observations of volcanic eruptions. Below, follow a series of historic events and scientific milestones that built the case for global dimming.�Susan K. Lewis |
Laki Eruption Cools Europe
1783 Benjamin Franklin went a step further in 1783, proposing that a massive volcanic eruption of the Laki fissure in Iceland caused months of unusually cold weather in Europe.
WWII Spurs Aerosol Science
1940s Before scientists could even be in a position to suspect such a subtle phenomenon as global dimming, they had to gain a better understanding of aerosols, particles suspended in a gas.
Cloud "Seeding" Attempted
1950s In the 1950s, various government and commercial groups began exploring whether it would be possible to "seed" clouds with silver iodide smoke and other substances in order to make rain and control local weather. The widespread cloud seeding efforts ultimately had very limited success.
Pollution's Far Reach
1960s In the 1960s, however, experts began studying how microscopic particles could linger longer and travel farther. Experts set up networks of monitoring stations to regularly measure atmospheric turbidity, commonly known as haze.
Ice Cores Reveal Past Trends
Late 1970s-early 1980s
Looking at ice cores from Greenland spanning hundreds of centuries, scientists repeatedly saw telltale signs that giant volcanic eruptions of dust and sulfuric acid were followed by cooler temperatures in subsequent years.
Early Computer Climate Models
Early computer models came to the same tentative conclusion. Human-made aerosols, they found, were contributing to cloud formation, increasing the planet's reflectivity, and causing a modest cooling.
Dinosaur Extinction Theory
In 1980, Walter and Luis Alvarez proposed that a giant asteroid striking Earth 65 million years ago had sent enough debris into the atmosphere to cool the planet and kill off the dinosaurs.
Shipping Lane Clouds
1987 In 1987, when satellite photos revealed persistent clouds over areas of the oceans used as shipping lanes. Smokestack exhaust from ships, dense with sulfate aerosols, was creating clouds that likely reflected sunlight and decreased the solar energy warming the ocean surface.
Pinatubo Confirms Climate Models
1991 By the mid-1990s, most scientists agreed that human-made aerosols were acting like an ongoing volcanic eruption, and that air pollution had likely been masking the impact of global warming for decades.
Indian Ocean Study
Late 1990s The study, called Project INDOEX, found that over northern regions of the ocean, where pollution streams in from India, a pollutant layer nearly two miles thick cut down the sunlight reaching the ocean by more than 10 percent�a far bigger effect than most scientists had thought possible.
Dimming Recognized Worldwide
Mid-1980s to present
In the mid-1980s, when meteorologist Gerry Stanhill reported that he found that other scientists had measured declines of 9 percent in Antarctica, 10 percent in areas of the U.S., 16 percent in parts of Great Britain, and almost 30 percent in one region of Russia. Alarmed by the trend, Stanhill coined the term "global dimming."
|All content from the Dimming the Sun homepage linked here:|
Using "Green" is the latest crazy by celebraties and millions of new "greenies" to make "gr$$n", now a group of self-proclaimed "ecobabes" are posing for a pinup calendar. The 12 female pseudo"environmentalists" were photographed -- fully clothed, for the most part -- in an effort to raise money for the Climate Protection Campaign of Sonoma County and seduce the public into reducing greenhouse gas emissions... San Francisco Chronicle Link
[Source: Siemens via GreenCarCongress VIA: autobloggreen.com]
In the U.S. election earlier this month, did you vote for or against corn ethanol? While ethanol may not have been on the ballot in so many words, the shift from Republican to Democratic control of Congress has had a lot of fallout in the green car world. One effect is the change of authorship of the upcoming reauthorization of the 2002 farm bill. As Forbes' Jessica Holzer tells us, the bill was slated to be written by Sen. Saxby Chambliss of Georgia and Rep. Bob Goodlatte of Virginia, "two Republican southerners with soft spots for cotton, peanut and tree farmers," but will now be written by corn belt Midwestern Democrats Rep. Collin Peterson of Minnesota and Sen. Tom Harkin of Iowa. And these two will likely give the ethanol industry everything it wants, even though it gets a lot already. The "constellation" of government support Holzer writes about includes the "tariff on imported ethanol, subsidies for growing corn and blending the fuel, crop insurance and a guaranteed market: The Energy Act of 2005 required refiners to ramp up ethanol use from 2.5 billion gallons last year to 7.5 billion gallons by 2012."
How could the government support an industry even further? A raise in the ethanol subsidy is possible, as is a grant program to help ethanol plants switch to using renewable energy. And funding for cellulosic ethanol research is also possible. This ethanol industry needs all of this government support, Holzer writes, because "Wall Street's support of ethanol would dry up in a flash without all the government support."
That doesn't sound like sustainable energy to me.
[Source: Jessica Holzer / Forbes - VIA:hugg.com]
Nov 26, 2006
Nov 25, 2006
Not new, not news… just “Green Marketing”
Much like Bio Fuels, Electric Cars & Hybirds have been around for nearly a century. The only thing that has change is “Eco-Marketing”. No seriously, people take credit everyday for someone else’s ideas. There have been passive energy generation devices that are equally inefficient. If they utilized power better, everyone would have designed one.
Do a simple google or patent search on anything that appears to be a new “Eco Idea”…. Most often you’ll find the “new” device is the name and marketing company.
While you should watch out for the new generation of “EcoScams”, I think it is AWESOME that so many people are looking for greener solutions and I support ALL companies that offer truly innovative, safer & environmentally sound solutions.
P.S. There are still 100's of great ways to use Peltier energy, I just questioning the obvious "What's green is new" Title on this one...
Rick Pigors, manager at the Farmers Union Co-op, told the Aberdeen News that if the EPA shuts the E30 pump down, he expects people will put standard gasoline and E85 into their tanks to arrive at a mix of about E30. It's not precise, but it's what his customers want.
New research shows that fish, birds and mammals in New England have significant amounts of mercury in their bodies. The reports find the toxic metal in some unexpected places -- such as rare birds that live on high mountaintops. The findings suggest that power plants in the Midwest are a major source of mercury for the Northeast...[more] This article requires the ability to listen to the report.
Nov 24, 2006
The highest yield feedstock for biodiesel is algae, which can produce 250 times the amount of oil per acre as soybeans
- Soy = 40 or 50 gallons of oil per acre per year
- Brassicas = 100-150 gallons per acre per year
- Palm = about 650 gallons per acre per year
- Algae = perhaps 10,000 gallons per acre per year (algae can be harvested every two weeks instead of once a year)
Facts From: wikipedia - The highest yield feedstock for biodiesel is algae, which can produce 250 times the amount of oil per acre as soybeans
More from: The Energy Blog
Nov 23, 2006
While it may sound harsh... Noel Gallagher makes some VALID points.
Noel Gallagher comments..."environmentalists: Greens are f***ing hippies with no place in the world. They've been telling us for the last 50 years not to use aerosols or the sky's going to fall in. Well - you're the scientists, do something about it. How do you suggest we get 50million Chinese not to have a fridge? Or get 700million Americans to stop using their big stupid cars. The only way its going to happen is if the sky falls in. Until is does, these Greens are wasting their time. I'm glad - because in 50 years time I'll be dead. » original news
Does this seem "extreme"? or am I being objective - Pollution & Global warming was "end of world" news during the 60's and 70's... What happened to the generations of people who cared and loved? They left the future in the hands of politicians and green groups who told them what to buy and how to act "green" (green washing).
Sound familiar yet? Just wait ... The ME gen got frustrated nothing happened and bought 5,000lb SUV's to drive to 3,000 sqft homes 40 miles from work in a subdivision with no forest or trees in sight... got divorced and doubled the "Eco-Impact".
My father recently passed away... hoping that he & other scientists would eliminate the environmental problems he faced in his lifetime, and if we listen to EHS "scientists", regulators ... "we can fix the REAL problems facing our nation, the world & the environment in MY lifetime.
How would you answer this poll question: "American automakers produce or sell dozens of car models that achieve over 35 miles per gallon but are not made available to consumers here in the United States. Do you think Detroit carmakers should be encouraged to make available here at home the more fuel-efficient cars they are currently only selling abroad?" If you're like most of America, you'd say "yes."
WASHINGTON, Nov. 21 /PRNewswire/ -- Will the Big 3 automakers blow it for a second time by misreading an American public that is expecting gasoline prices to start soaring again soon? As President Bush and Congress continue to huddle with Detroit vehicle manufacturers, a strong and bipartisan 78 percent of Americans want Washington to impose a 40 mile per gallon (MPG) fuel-efficiency standard for American vehicles, according to a new Opinion Research Corporation (ORC) national opinion survey to be released on November 21, 2006 by the nonprofit and nonpartisan Civil Society Institute (CSI).
Other key findings of the ORC survey include the following:
* Nine out of 10 Americans expect gas prices to go up "in the near
future," with nearly half (46 percent) "definitely" expecting a
resumption of higher fuel prices.
* 70 percent of Americans are not turning their back on fuel-efficiency
concerns and say that they are factoring "expected future gasoline price
increases into consideration in thinking about buying a new vehicle."
* Temporarily lower gasoline prices are not sending large numbers of
Americans rushing back to gas-guzzling SUV and trucks. In fact, nearly
half (45 percent) of Americans are now more likely to buy a "hybrid or
other fuel-efficient vehicle" than they were six months ago, compared to
30 percent who are unchanged in their plans and fewer than one in four
(24 percent) who are less likely to make such a vehicle purchase.
Even though Honda is dropping the ultracapacitor used in the current version of the FCX fuel cell car in the new FCX prototype, ultracapacitors have and will continue to play an important role in hybrid and hydrogen fuel cell vehicle technology. That's why it's cool news to see that Maxwell Technologies introduced a new 125-volt Boostcap ultracapacitor module last week (called the HTM BMOD0063-P125, not pictured), intended for use in heavy hybrid and electric vehicles.
Able to deliver power and recharge very quickly,
Nov 22, 2006
Take an inventory of all of the hazardous chemicals you have around the house. Commit to replacing the typical hazardous home cleaners with safer alternatives....
Gather up all of the old cleaners, fertilizers, paint and other chemicals that have been sitting around for a while and that you do not need. Now find the next local cleanup event near you that collects these types of products for proper disposal...
If there are children or pets in the house, it is common sense to verify hazards like chemicals, cosmetics, knives, cleaners, food ingredients and fragile items are properly secured and stored out of reach from the little ones...
Give the gift of a plant, tree or shrub as remembrance of this important time in your life.
This regulation is part of a series which, by 2010, will reduce consumer product VOC emissions in California by 40 percent. Consumer products are any chemically formulated product used by households or institutions and include: detergents; cleaning compounds; polishes; floor finishes; cosmetics; antiperspirants; hairsprays; home, lawn and garden products; disinfectants; sanitizers; automotive specialty products; and aerosol paints. Research has shown that these products expel 240 tons per day (TPD), or about 11 percent of the state's total VOC emissions. Today's regulations will reduce emissions in California by nearly 12 TPD by 2012.
VOCs, like gasoline, alcohol, and the solvents used in paints, often have a strong odor, and contribute to the creation of ground level ozone and particulate matter. These can lead to respiratory problems, aggravate asthma, impair the immune system, and increase the risk of premature death.
"Through the reduced impact on public health and the related economic burden, all Californians will benefit from this reduction of VOCs," continued Dr. Sawyer.
ARB staff has determined that the total cost for the regulation will come to $20 million per year, or about $2.35 per pound of VOC reduced. Consumers may see a price increase of about 6 cents per unit. Source: http://www.arb.ca.gov/newsrel/nr111706.htm
MADISON -- School lunch will take on a whole new flavor as students at Washburn Elementary School in Bayfield County grow their own fruits and vegetables for their hot lunch program next year. At Lannon Elementary School in Waukesha County, teachers and students started a plastics recycling program.
Both schools have qualified to become Wisconsin's newest Green and Healthy Schools.
"We're excited to see our Green and Healthy schools develop creative learning activities for students that teach them to care for themselves, their schools and their communities," said Brenda Hagman, who directs the DNR Bureau of Education and Information. "The future of energy conservation and green practices lies with our up and coming generations. It's great to see the kids embrace these values at an early age."
Washburn Elementary School plans to celebrate its Green and Healthy status next April during the Week of the Young Child celebration in Washburn. The celebration will also coincide with Earth Day. Lannon Elementary School plans to celebrate its Green and Healthy status in January. Both schools are now eligible for up to $1,000 in grants to reimburse them for any costs incurred for participating in the program.
People interested in learning about or participating in the Green & Healthy Schools program can find more information on the DNR Web site.
- 15 percent for the amount of greenhouse gases and carbon dioxide produced per ton of packaging production,
- 15 percent for how much raw material is being used to create the package,
- 15 percent for how small a package is used for the product,
- 15 percent for the ratio of packaging to product,
- 10 percent for transportation impacts,
- 10 percent for how much recycled content is in the package,
- 10 percent for the packaging material's recovery value,
- 5 percent on whether renewable energy was used to produce the package, and
- 5 percent for innovation in packaging.
More information on the test version of Wal-Mart scorecard for suppliers is available at http://www.scorecardlibrary.com/.