Showing posts from August, 2014

Independence chance is fleeting

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[A brief, emotional piece on the Scottish vote for independence. *RON*]
by Andrew Wilson, The Scotsman, 31 August 2014
The tears came, suddenly and unexpectedly. I was ­sitting in my car, having just posted my referendum vote into the Royal Mail box in my village.

They only lasted a few seconds, and I quickly calmed myself, dried my eyes and headed off to work for another day. But the feeling stayed with me for hours afterwards.

These were not tears for the glory of Scotland’s journey – that’s not ­really my thing. Nor were they tears of joy. I was hit by something much deeper, more personal and very close to home. I’m not sure I can even ­explain what happened.

But let me try. Earlier, I had marked a cross beside Yes on my postal vote while looking at the photographs of the three darling children I live with and try my best to be a good dad to. I am never quite sure how I am doing at that. For one reason and another we have been through quite a ye…

Spotlight on hydro as barriers block salmon

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[I imagine these results are directly transferable to the (friends of Liberals only need apply) run-of-river hydroelectric projects in BC. *RON*]
by Ilona Amos, The Scotsman, 31 August 2014

MINI green energy schemes may pose a danger to struggling populations of wild salmon and trout by thwarting their journey upstream, according to pioneering new research.

Matthew Newton, a scientist at Glasgow University, used state-of-the-art radio tagging technology in a two-year study of salmon in Scotland as they migrate upriver to breed. He discovered that barriers such as weirs and dams can delay a fish’s progress for up to a month, and in some cases prove uncrossable. He found that 10 per cent of fish failed to pass each barrier.

The environmental and evolutionary biology PhD student will publish the results next year in his thesis.

He says salmon and trout populations in rivers with several of these hurdles, sometimes as many as eight, could be under serio…

Legal Case: White House Argues Against Considering Climate Change on Energy Projects

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[Essentially this means that Obama is talking about adopting what we might call "The Harper Dogma" where environmental assessment for energy project is concerned. It's a sad day when Canada leads the US in encouraging environmental degradation. A strong challenge needs to be developed to this view - that climate change need not be considered when making the decision to approve energy projects. *RON*]
 Steve Horn, DeSmogBlog, 31 August 2014
Just over a month before the United Nations convenes on September 23 in New York City to discuss climate change and activists gather for a week of action, the Obama White House Council on Environmental Quality (CEQ) argued it does not have to offer guidance to federal agencies it coordinates with to consider climate change impacts for energy decisions.

It came just a few weeks before a leaked draft copy of the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change's (IPCC) latest assessment said climate dis…

Infographic 191 drought maps reveal just how thirsty California has become

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[I ran across this as a click-through in a different article. *RON*]

By Kyle Kim, Thomas Suh Lauder, LA Times, 28 August 2014

It doesn't take much to understand why California is so worried about drought. Reservoirs are ever-dwindling. Rainfall is sporadic at best. And let's not forget about the millions of gallons of precious water recently flooding the streets of Brentwood.

More than 80% of California is in extreme drought, according to the U.S. Drought Monitor, and the state's condition isn't expected to improve in the near future.

The Drought Monitor, which collects data from 50 different weather indicators, have shown an increasingly red California since 2011, the last time the drought map was clear.

Watch the 10 second snap-shot here.

Abnormally Dry Moderate Drought Severe Drought Extreme Drought Exceptional Drought 2011 Jan. 04 Jan. 11 Jan. 18 Jan. 25 Feb. 01 Feb. 08 Feb. 15 Feb. 22 Mar. 01 Mar. 08