Day 5: #noKXL Rundown


Plenty to take in now that Day 5 of the Keystone XL pipeline protests has come and gone.  Twitter is awash with positive news from those involved.

Here are a few of the day’s highlights:

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President Obama, Superman is on Line 1


Here I Come to Save the Day!

(Damn right that’s an Andy Kauffman reference!)

The Keystone XL pipeline protests roared through Day 4 with Margot Kidder, of Superman fame, leading the way.

I got in one of my better potshots in a while upon hearing of the actress’ participation with the following tweet:

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Can Tomatoes Save the World?


Image by: Thelonious Gonzo

I’m beginning to work on the term paper for my summer school class “Global Climate Change: The Science, Social Impact, and Diplomacy of a World Environmental Crisis” and thought I’d share my working concept to the good people of the internet for a little vetting/research suggestions.  The working concept is to measure  either the Greenhouse Gas or water (Possibly both) impacts of tomato gardening in comparison to that of industrial farming.  The goal would be to measure the opportunity for reducing impact via production and transport.  To measure the opportunity, I would have to find the difference in inputs between an industrial farm and that of an organic home farm.  I would also need to determine the difference in GHGs produced by the two methods.

The initial thought might be that the home gardening scenario would mitigate all transport, but that would necessitate having all inputs either being available on site, or within reasonable distance for walking, bicycling, or some other non-motorized transport.

So, please take your best shot at the concept.  Do you think it has merit, or am I off the reservation again?

Image by: fox_kiyo

Potential Research Items:

I’ve ordered the new book “Tomatoland: How Modern Industrial Agriculture Destroyed Our Most Alluring Fruit” by Barry Estabrook and am starting to work through the following resources:

As you can see this is my highly non-private beginning to my paper.  I’m certainly not looking to have my work done for me, but if an interesting question comes to mind, I’d love to see how it might fit in with my research.
As always, thanks for stopping by!
-Chris

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?

This Land is Our Land?


Several things got under my skin today which  I thought I’d share in this post…

It’s gouge today and sell tomorrow as Senator Sanders takes on oil speculators and Dylan Ratigan tackles the privatization of America’s public goods.

First up is a video from The ED Show which features Senator Sanders talking about his bill to cap oil speculation.

Next we have a couple of segments from Dylan Ratigan on a growing trend in which public goods are being sold to foreign interests.  Click on the links in Dylan’s tweets below to see the videos.

Both of these gentlemen are tackling issues which I find to be incredibly inappropriate. In fact, I have a hard time reconciling their occurrence. What do you think? Am I off the mark? Is it really acceptable to drive up the price of oil for personal gain, no matter the cost to the economy as a whole? What about those whose budgets have been stretched thin by the recession? Is this supposed to be a rising tide that lifts all boats? The tide may be rising, but from this vantage point it appears that most boats are anchored. Furthermore, is it also okay to sell off our public assets to cover short term deficits?

Mortgaging our future won’t fix the problems that got us here. It will compound them. Does anyone believe that the toll roads will be run more efficiently, or that the costs will be lower for it’s users? I think not!

I thought I’d close with an old favorite, Uncle Tupelo’s “Life Worth Livin,” which captures the mood these recent developments have brought about. At least it will allow me to head to bed with a wistful smile…

Enjoy!

Lyrics:

This song is sung for anyone that’s listening
This song is for the broken-spirited man
This song is for anyone left standing
After the strain of a slow, sad end

It seems everybody wants what someone else has
There’s sorrow enough for all
Just go in any bar and ask
With a beer in each hand and a smile in between
All around’s a world grown mean

We’ve all had our ups and downs
It’s been mostly down around here
Now this whole damn mess is becoming quite clear

Looks like we’re all looking for a life worth livin’
That’s why we drink ourselves to sleep
Yeah, we’re all looking for a life worth livin’
That’s why we pray for our souls to keep

There’s nothing left now but broken pieces
Of one man’s broken will to care
And in the end before all is said and done
How many others might follow him there?

This song is sung for anyone that’s listening
This song is for the broken-spirited man
This song is for anyone left standing
After the strain of a slow, sad end

Midnight is comin’ ’round
Still mostly down around here
Now this whole damn mess is becoming quite clear