SciAm: Fracking Banned in New York.
Good for the health of NY; not for their bottom line.
PA will probably wave the revenues in NY’s face. Until the boom ends. And the back-end infrastructure and cleanup costs bankrupt the state.
Mashable: Private land in Grand Teton now open to hunters
“A reinterpretation of the park’s regulations by the Park Service means wildlife on private land within Grand Teton’s boundaries now falls under Wyoming Game and Fish Department rules, which allow hunts for bison, mountain lions, mule deer, waterfowl and other game. Any wolves in the park are protected and cannot be hunted.” This will impact the park negatively. Quite negatively. I’m surprised at the NPS.
Julia Butterfly Hill, the young lady who tree-sat in Luna, has been injured.
A car accident. Her friends are building a fund to meet her deductible, along with helping finance her recuperation.
Later: And a side comment, think of how many are living with 6k deductibles, “affordable” health care.
naked cap: Oil Price Drop Not Affecting US Drilling Much.
“How low can the price of shale oil drop before it becomes too expensive to extract? The conventional wisdom is that the threshold is $60 per barrel.” Is it me, or does the number keep dropping?
Atlas Obscura: Quietly Growing Among Us, These Trees Flew to the Moon and Back.
There’s a bit of trivia that’s new.
BBC: Why is diesel now bad news?
“First, there have been problems with the particle traps - some drivers have removed them because they sometimes don’t work properly unless the car is driven hot. Second, the diesels are still producing nitrogen dioxide (NO2), which irritates the lungs of people with breathing problems. Diesels make several times more NO2 than petrol cars.” ‘Clean Diesel’ is apparently a misnomer.
Bloomberg: Why Elon Musk’s Batteries Scare the Hell Out of the Electric Company.
“‘The mortal threat that ever cheaper on-site renewables pose’ comes from systems that include storage ... [snip] ... ‘That is an unregulated product you can buy at Home Depot that leaves the old business model with no place to hide.’” (Rubs hands together in glee ...)
Guardian.UK: Fracking chemicals could pose risks to reproductive health, say researchers.
Well, duh. Get this: “I certainly wouldn’t dismiss it lightly, but I think we will have to wait for detailed prospective data from well-organised studies ...” Wait? For what? We know many of the compounds. We know those compounds’ lethality. We know they’re getting spilled and/or leaked. Do you really want to be a lemming?
naked cap: New Study Says US Fracking Boom Will Fade Quickly After 2020.
Just wait until the cleanup brouhaha starts. It will be epic, and epically expensive.
Past Horizons: Localised drought contributed to 13th century southwest Colorado depopulation.
“It’s when those niches really start shrinking on the landscape that we start having a major problem, because you’ve got a lot of people who are used to doing something in one way and they can no longer do it that way.” Lessons. Eyes to see, ears to hear, and all that.
CNBC: New US oil and gas well November permits tumble nearly 40 percent.
Less pollution, less infrastructure impact, less taxpayer liability. What’s not to like? I know, I know ... lower revenues for the state coffers. I can live with that. Emphasis on the word ‘live.’
PS Mag: America’s Railroads Are Ill-Equipped to Act as Oil Pipelines.
“Using rail networks has saved the oil and gas industry the time and capital it takes to build new pipelines, but the trade-off is greater risk: Researchers estimates that trains are three and a half times as likely as pipelines to suffer safety lapses.” My italic emphasis, while ignoring the grammar.
Guardian.UK: How a ruby-red Texas town turned against fracking.
“The fracking ban that comes into effect on Tuesday in the heart of Texas may never have happened at all, if industry had not insisted on fracking beside a local hospital, a children’s playground, and the 100-year-old farmhouse that was Cathy McMullen’s retirement dream. That brought fracking a step too far.” This is how they operate, take note. And nary a penny for infrastructure improvements. YOU pay for that, as a taxpayer.
Guardian.UK: Hillary Clinton says fracking carries risks in conservation speech.
Piffle. H, you’re bordering on ‘too little, too late’ in my book. You’ve been carrying water for Big Oil for too long.
SciAm: Rooftop Solar Cost Competitive with the Grid in Much of the U.S.
But that’s great news. Should be shouted from the mountaintops.
Guardian.UK: Reflecting sunlight into space has terrifying consequences, say scientists.
naked cap: Who Will Wind Up Holding the Bag in the Shale Gas Bubble?
The taxpayer, ultimately.
SF New Mexican: Officials - Hiker found north of Santa Fe ski basin died of hypothermia.
In late JULY, note. When we’re nearly at our hottest temps. I keep banging on about this, but you can so easily be hiking, have a thunderstorm crest those mountains, and experience a 60 degree temperature drop in minutes. I see so many people, too far from the trailheads, woefully unprepared. I do stop and advise (gently), when there’s an opportunity.
NY Times: Where Oil and Politics Mix.
“Reluctant landowners standing in the way of progress.” A lot of big money behind fracking; they steamroll rather than negotiate. No municipalities have regulations or laws in place for the onslaught, other than the 1860’s mining law.
Guardian.UK: Taxpayers to fund hundreds of fracking boreholes across the country.
One of the most bone-headed concepts I’ve ever heard. Every single one of those boreholes will have to be capped with concrete, and then monitored in perpetuity. Paid for by taxpayers, of course. “Manage the subsurface safely.” What a crock.
365/2: 322. Meet ‘Flit’, our wintering hummingbird.
We have a wintering hummingbird. Up at 6AM to give him warm sugar water (it’s below 27 at night here, when sugar water freezes). He’s skittish as all get-out, and I have to sneak up on him to get any image at all. Tight crop, through a screen. Hopefully he’ll get tamer if he sticks around.
Job #1 right now is keeping him alive through these cold nights. The skittish behavior is something we’ve observed before, when instinct takes over. He obviously would love to migrate, but can’t lace up enough food sources to make it ... so he’ll disappear for a day, half a day, and then reappear. If he could make it to the Bosque down in Albuquerque, he’d have food sources all the way down to Mexico. It’s this first 75 miles that’s brutal for late migrators.
CJR: Texas reporters fight for access to fracking facts.
Let some sun shine in. To me, this policy bespeaks a great deal of fear.
NY Times: The Civil War’s Environmental Impact.
“Man has too long forgotten that the earth was given to him for usufruct alone, not for consumption, still less for profligate waste.” A useful word for upcoming drone issues, methinks. Or knocking Ms Nockett.
Modern Farmer: Landmark 20-Year Study Finds Pesticides Linked to Depression In Farmers.
“Earlier this fall, researchers from the National Institute of Health finished up a landmark 20-year study, a study that hasn’t received the amount of coverage it deserves. About 84,000 farmers and spouses of farmers were interviewed since the mid-1990s to investigate the connection between pesticides and depression, a connection that had been suggested through anecdotal evidence for far longer.”
Outside Online: Alberta’s Tar Sands and the High Cost of Oil.
“‘Industry is industry,’ he said. It exists for one purpose—profit — and pushes relentlessly toward that goal. If people want to control industry, they should elect government officials committed to strict regulation.”