Our economy slows, climate change will affect it, and “The US population has officially hit 300m people. In a poll, all but six of them agreed we need a new strategy in Iraq.”
New culprit in climate change: Airlines. Not so very new, it’s just that noone ever thinks to notice that airplanes don’t have pollution controls. No catalytic convertors. No mufflers. Most people just assume what is developed for automobile engines gets ‘automatically’ applied to airplanes. Pollution controls are weighty and cut into profit margins. Airlines fight and lobby against such strictures as if their lives depend upon it. Fact is, airliners are putting pollution in the high atmosphere, right in the best possible spot to realize the worst effects.
A decade or so ago, I saw a special after a particularly fiery and deadly plane crash, about new technologies to make airliners safer. One was a Canadian individual who came up with a light metal mesh that is installed in airliner gas tanks. The mesh prevents the expansion of gas, preventing explosions ... limiting the flames to localized fire around the tanks. Very light, might have reduced carrying capacity by about 12 passengers (if my memory is correct) in a large airliner. I haven’t heard a peep about it since.
Bring back dirigibles.
Related: Stop global warming! Lose weight.
A rock makes an impact in Brooklyn.
with the new windows in the house, today was the first day that the inside temps fell below 65. Outside thermo says it’s less than 30, and the winds are brisk. So just now I turned on the radiant heat. Kicker is, I haven’t finished insulating and plastering yet. Very impressed with insulative and weather-sealing performance.
SF New Mexican:
No, no really ... you really don’t have to.
NY Times Op-Ed Contributor:
If you suffer from SAD, don’t read this.
NY Times Europe:
Swiss glaciers disappear, affecting tourism.
SF New Mexican/AP:
Please stand by. I disdain the fact that some modern electronics don’t even bother with on-off switches these days, going for the permanent standby mode.
NY Times Real Estate:
Everything You Need to Know About Bedbugs but Were Afraid to Ask. Ah, wimps. I woke up one morning in Big Bend with a full-grown tarantula drinking sweat from my sternum. Now that’s a ‘bed bug.’
SF New Mexican:
State revises WIPP permit to allow so-called ‘hot waste’. The incremental increase in risk was predictable ... and the longer Yucca Mountain is delayed, the more pressure there will be to accept ever higher levels of waste. WIPP trucks pass by my community, which, if a truck spilled waste on 285, there is no evacuation route to remove the residents of 2000+ homes. The WIPP plan was approved in spite of this risk to citizens. But we have to survive the idiocies of modern politics ... the easiest remedy, to my mind, would be to improve the access road along the railroad down towards Lamy, to allow something other than 4WDs to attempt it. I think the Feds should shell out for it; after all, it’s their hot garbage ...
SF New Mexican:
Chronic wasting disease found in animals. Elk and white tailed deer. If you’re a hunter, don’t eat heart tissue.
The Maui News:
Earthquake rattles the big island of Hawaii. I point you direct to a Hawaiian source, because some mainstream sources indicate all the Hawaiian islands have succumbed to this earthquake. Most don’t mention earthquakes are rather frequent in our favorite volcanic islands. [Sow that fear and panic, guys; the for-profit nature of your business is showing.]
New combatant against global warming: insurance industry. Risk-averse insurance hedges its bets.
Thorium may be a safer fuel for nuclear reactors. Saw thorium mentioned on one of those 50’s or 60’s “what does the future hold?” articles listed on MeFi a week ago.
NY Times Environment:
Study Links Extinction Cycles to Changes in Earth’s Orbit and Tilt. “It so happens, the paleontologists say, that variations in the course Earth travels around the Sun and in the tilt of its axis are associated with episodes of global cooling. Their new research on the fossil record shows that the cyclical pattern of these phenomena corresponds to species turnover in rodents and probably other mammal groups as well.”
Bush Urges Quick Action on North Korea. Here we go; I surely hoped we wouldn’t tread this path. “Mr. Bush said he ‘remains committed to diplomacy,’ but that any transfer by North Korea of nuclear or nuclear-related missile technology to ‘any state or non-state actor’ would ‘be considered a grave threat to the United States.’” Rhetorical wimp. ‘Grave threat.’ He doesn’t dare declare transfer of nuclear weapons technology as an act of war, because it would tie our own hands. The permanent members of the Security Council are making too much money in nuclear technology sales ... and there isn’t a country in the world who wouldn’t sell a bomb to a baby for the right price.
Blast from the past, read the Gilpatrick Report submitted to President Johnson, 1965. The most obvious problem, comparing today to 1965, is that we must stop trading our long-term nonproliferation goals for short-term strategic interests.
Bush Policy Irks Judges in West, Rulings Criticize Agencies for Not Protecting the Environment.
NY Times Business:
Oil Prices Rise on Reports of Possible OPEC Cuts. Some of the more conservative sites have been crowing about lowering energy prices as a boon for the fall election. OPEC made clear at least a couple of months ago, they will not allow the price per barrel to drop below $60. Watch, as the high-gas-price blame game gets redirected from ill-conceived nation-building and foreign policy jitters to that ‘bad old OPEC’ once again.
Related: The Energy Diet.
SF New Mexican:
The city’s lamenting running out of pot(s) ...
SF New Mexican:
A Stark Monument. But you can only visit it if you have a security clearance.
to verify on one’s own. Microwaved water and plants.
NY Times Africa:
Proponents of globalization need to take a hard look at it in practice.
NY Times Autos:
Plug-in Hybrids. Funny, I’ve just been noticing Sprinters everywhere these days.