Closing the Door on the Density Debate (Graphic)

Check out the graph below which plots city density against transport related energy use.  As we transition to a resource constrained world, is there any question where we need to head on this curve?

The #PlanetHome Chat Wrap

I stumbled upon a twitter chat featuring Jeffrey Hollender (Twitter id: @JeffHollender) & Alexandra Zissu (Twitter id: @AlexandaZissu) called Planet Home. (Twitter hashtag: #PlanetHome) The chat was apparently in support of Jeffrey & Alexandra’s book of the same name.  I really enjoyed the chat and thought I’d share a few of the highlights.

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A Visual Representation of Atmospheric CO2 (Video)

I just learned of this video in class this evening.  It’s a pretty stunning graphical representation of the change in CO2 levels over time.

The left pane shows the distribution of CO2 throughout the atmosphere by latitude with the south pole on the left edge and the north pole on the right.  The right pane displays the Keeling Curve, which shows the global average slowly ticking up.  Global averages show a stair step function as growing seasons of northern hemisphere summers counteract this activity for part of the year.  Unfortunately, it is not enough to counteract a year’s production of CO2.  The activists at Bill McKibben’s think we should try to stay at or below 350 parts per million, but we’re already approaching 400 ppm with no relief in sight.

The video starts out with data from the 1960s, when Charles Keeling began recording CO2 levels at the Mauna Loa Observatory.  The graph comes forward to present day and then projects back using data from ice core samples.  The video makes it plain to see the impact we’ve had on the atmosphere.  Check it out and please share you thoughts in the comments section below.
Thanks for stopping by!

Update: 9/14/2011

It’s like I always say, “If you wait around long enough, Paul Krugman will solve all of your problems.” Check out Mr. Krugman’s “response” to a commenter’s desire for a scale that starts at zero: “Axes of Evil?

The Swollen Missouri River (Pic)

I took a break from my evening bike ride to snap this pic of the Missouri River.  Under normal conditions you would see banks on either side of this section.  My favorite park, which is a mile or so up the river from here, has been underwater since April.  Nothing to see here…


Update: (7/11/11)

I just stopped by my favorite park and found it to still be underwater.  It’s starting to look like a lost summer…

(I took the pic below  from the park’s entrance, which goes down a slight incline.  I apologize for the poor quality of the shot, but it was already dusk when I arrived and my Droid’s flash does not hold up well in outdoor conditions.   Back to the pic…  The slight incline is still under about three feet of water and has been impassable every time I’ve visited the site since April.)