Tuesday, December 18, 2007
Thursday, December 13, 2007
This is a scary article that discusses this huge spot in the Pacific ocean as big as Texas that is full of plastic and garbage. The article discusses the fact that this plastic is very dangerous for animals All of the animals from the smallest to the largest such as whales are in danger. There was a picture of a sea turtle that was being suffocated bt a piece of plastic wrapped around his middle. This was causing his shell to form an hourglass figure. The article also goes on to discuss the dangerous chemicals found in plastics.
This is a really interesting article. It just blew my mind. It is about the government wanting to use ethanol as fuel. This would mean people in countries such as Swaziland will go hungry. These people are already in a bad drought. The author claims that the U.S. has several thousand hectares of land reserved to start producing ethanol. Ethanol comes from cassava those peoples staple crop.The author talks about the fact that food prices are already rising and people could not afford the food when it was inexpensive. Also, this takes more land which decreases the amount of arable land and water, which is already limited. The author also says that the UN Food and Agriculture Organization says this is the lowest global food reserve in 25 years.
Watch this first ever video of the “Mickey Mouse of the Dessert.” This small rare threatened rodent is getting a lot of attention because of this clip. Scientists are choosing a few threatened species and providing a lot of awareness so people can help do their part to save these animals. So far it is working out pretty well.
Al Gore is in Bali, Indonesia right now and was talking about how the U.S. is responsible for blocking process in the talks about emissions reductions. A lot of people took offence to Gore’s comment and one said "The U.S. is being open and working very constructively with the other countries that are here. We are rolling our sleeves up and really working to come up with a global post-2012 framework." Gore is also confident that the next president is going to support environmental changes and the Kyoto Protocol.
Wednesday, December 12, 2007
I thought this was an interesting article about the surf scoter ducks. The big San Francisco oil spill occurred at the same time these poor ducks migrated to the Bay. They came to S.F for the climate and for its abundant food supply of clams, crabs and mussels. These sea ducks are already having trouble surviving and this has just made it worse. So far, more than 1000 birds have been found dead but more have been saved and rehabilitated at a wildlife center.
These ducks are not on any endangered lists but their population has “declined 50 to 70 percent in the past four decades” and some of this is linked to global warming issues.
I am willing to bet that in the next election a democrat is going to be president and will probably ratify this protocol. I think like most political issues in the United States, the political parties are split down the middle, not thinking about the entire picture or compromise but what is best for themselves. The Kyoto Protocol would require us to reduce greenhouse gas emissions below levels specified in the Treaty. “These targets must be met within a five-year time frame between 2008 and 2012, and add up to a total cut in GHG emissions of at least 5% against the baseline of 1990.”
In class we have been talking a lot about how to recycle more efficiently. I thought this article was really interesting because provides a lot of tips on how to recycle almost anything. It supplies plenty of resources to contact to get rid of old vehicles, batteries, oil, other chemicals, phones, clothes, electronic devices, glasses, lights, food, books, art supplies, newspapers, paint, boxes, bags, carpet, plastic, peanuts, pans, envelopes, smoke detectors, Styrofoam, videotapes, even wire hangers. These are just a few of the examples this article lists.
I wouldn’t think about how to recycle most of these things and without easy access to a solution I would probably get rid of it without thinking about the effects on the environment. I think this is the case for most people and without widely available information and awareness this problem of waste will not improve. I realize recycling is expensive but if we find other ways to reuse products or find other people who can, we can each do our part to save the world.
Tuesday, December 11, 2007
The energy is then abruptly released in the form of a shimmering display of lights visible in the upper latitudes of the Northern Hemisphere, said principal investigator Vassilis Angelopoulos of the University of California, Los Angeles.Results were presented Tuesday at the American Geophysical Union meeting.In March, the satellites detected a burst of northern lights, or auroras borealis, over Alaska and Canada. During the two-hour light show, the satellites measured particle flow and magnetic fields from space.To scientists' surprise, the geomagnetic storm powering the auroras raced 400 miles in a minute across the sky. Angelopoulos estimated the storm's power was equal to the energy released by a magnitude 5.5 earthquake."Nature was very kind to us," Angelopoulos said.Although researchers have suspected the existence of wound-up bundles of magnetic fields that provide energy for the auroras, the phenomenon was not confirmed until May, when the satellites became the first to map their structure some 40,000 miles above the Earth's surface.Scientists hope the satellites will record a geomagnetic storm next year that's now in the making, and end the debate about when the storms are triggered.
Monday, December 10, 2007
Just because something is grown locally doesn’t mean that it is better for the environment. Researchers at the
Related Content http://www.sanluisobispo.com
Nuclear waste from the coastal Diablo Canyon power plant could be shipped by truck over San Luis Obispo County roads for loading onto trains heading for a proposed desert disposal site.
The federal Department of Energy says the exact method for transporting radioactive waste to Nevada's Yucca Mountain will be made on a case-by-case basis. Rail and barge methods are being considered.
The San Luis Obispo Tribune newspaper says that means there is still a possibility that Diablos waste could be taken by barge to Port Hueneme for loading onto Nevada-bound trains.
Federal officials hope to open Yucca Mountain in about nine years with shipping of spent fuel from Diablo Canyon coming seven years after it opens
Sunday, December 9, 2007
Thursday, December 6, 2007
IN COMPARISON, THE AVERAGE ECOLOGICAL FOOTPRINT IN YOUR COUNTRY IS 2.5 GLOBAL HECTARES PER PERSON. WORLDWIDE, THERE EXIST 1.8 BIOLOGICALLY PRODUCTIVE GLOBAL HECTARES PER PERSON.
IF EVERYONE LIVED LIKE YOU, WE WOULD NEED 3 PLANETS.
Waste was used as fuel for indoor burners and destroyed in fireplaces or outdoors bonfires. Waste is also deposited in open bodies of water, such as ponds, bogs, lakes, and rivers and the ocean.
The industrial revolution increased the population of cities in America and even Europe. The industrial revolution transformed America into an urban nation.
Wednesday, December 5, 2007
The United States and Australia were not in agreement with the Kyoto Protocol. This Kyoto Protocol was a good step in taking action to reduce the effects of the greenhouse gases it has on Earth.
Wednesday, November 28, 2007
Teachers in public and private schools throughout Fresno County can request solid waste educational assistance with classroom presentations, tours of the American Avenue Landfill, teachers workshops, and other resources, free of charge. Literature addressing a variety of ways to manage solid waste is available to the public upon request. Speakers are also available to address civic and community groups regarding solid waste issues.For additional information, contact the Resources Division at 262-4259.
*AMERICAN AVENUE MUNICIPAL SOLID WASTE LANDFILL, Fresno County
Located approximately five miles southwest of the City of Kerman and is 440 acres. It is estimated that the landfill will be able to continue operation until 2031 when it will be full and will have to be closed.
*Local Enforcement Agency
The purpose of the Fresno County Local Enforcement Agency (LEA) is to protect the health, safety and well-being of the public and to preserve and improve the quality of the environment by assuring proper storage and disposal of solid waste; to minimize the presence of vectors related to solid waste handling and disposal methods; and to respond to public complaints relating to the accumulation, storage, collection, processing and disposal of solid waste in Fresno County.
E-Waste in India - Short documentary
UC Davis NewsWatch: Landfill Gas I
The Protocol gives developed countries five years to reduce their GHG to a specified amount and it is enforced by the United Nations. There is added pressure for developed countries because they caused more of the problem and they have more money to help rectify the situation. The program does have some flexibility to help countries reach their goal and three of examples include Emissions Trading, Joint Implementation and a Clean Development Mechanism. These aids allow countries to trade credits according to programs that they design to help lower emissions. Both developing and developed countries can benefit from this process.
According to a recent study, there is a direct correlation between human influences and the way our climate has changed. The Kyoto Protocol is a great step forward in reducing emissions. Many countries have worked hard achieve their goal. This first agreement expires in 2012 and a new plan needs to be worked out by then. This will help keep the world’s awareness of environmental issues up and GHG emissions down.
Monday, November 26, 2007
Friday, November 23, 2007
Monday, November 19, 2007
10:23 a.m. November 19, 2007
SAN FRANCISCO – Ten members of Congress including House Speaker Nancy Pelosi are in San Francisco seeking answers on the recent oil spill.
The chairman of the House Subcommittee on Coast Guard and Maritime Transportation tells The Associated Press his number one goal is to figure out how the spill happened November 7th, and the Coast Guard's performance.
Cummings says the Coast Guard took on more national-security duties such as protecting ports after September 11th. He tells A-P he wants to determine whether the Coast Guard is now stretched too thin to respond to disasters such as the spill.
Cummings also wants to study the possibility of requiring double hulls on the fuel tanks of cargo ships, and the possibililty of requiring the Coast Guard to more actively manage vessel traffic in waterways.
Sunday, November 18, 2007
A UN climate conference has agreed on a blueprint for fighting global warming and warned governments have only a few years to avert some of the worst effects.
Delegates at the 130-nation talks stood and applauded at the end of the meeting in Valencia, Spain, yesterday.
Delegates agreed on a 20-page summary on Friday about the mounting risk of climate change.
"This is the strongest report yet by the IPCC (Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change), but says that there is still time to act," said Australian climate scientist Bill Hare.
The document will put pressure on environment ministers, who meet next month in Bali, to agree a two-year plan on how to negotiate a successor to the Kyoto Protocol, the main UN plan for fighting warming until 2012.
"The report sends a very strong signal to Bali," said Hans Verolme, director of the World Wildlife Fund conservation group's climate change program. "Now it's up to the politicians."
Kyoto sets binding goals only for cutting greenhouse gases in 36 nations. Australia, the US and developing nations led by China have not agreed to Kyoto.
The IPCC report says human activity is "very likely" to cause rising temperatures, and that deep cuts in greenhouse gas emissions are needed to avert more heatwaves, melting glaciers, extinctions and rising sea levels.
Climate change, population growth and biofuel demand mean food prices will keep rising, making the world's poorest even more vulnerable, warns UN World Food Program boss Josette Sheeran.
"Many people are simply being priced out of the food market," Ms Sheeran said.
The Ministry for Emergency Situations. ministry said improved weather was helping the effort to clear the spill, which environmentalists fear could damage the area for years.
About 2,000 workers are being called on to clean up the oil which has washed up over the past few days
Watch this video on cnn.
Thursday, October 25, 2007
“The human population is now so large that the amount of resources needed to sustain it exceeds what is available at current consumption patterns...”
Monday, October 22, 2007
A pesticide is absorbed by organisms of the lower level of the food chain the higher organisms food chain will eat many of the lower organisms to retaine the chemical.
Wednesday, October 17, 2007
USA Today published an article in January of 03 warning us of the potential outcome if we don't learn how to conserve our water.
Tuesday, October 16, 2007
Water issues take center stage in SacramentoStory Published: Oct 4, 2007 at 9:15 PM EDTStory Updated: Oct 6, 2007 at 5:51 AM EDTBy Adam SextonWatch the story After one of the driest water years in recent memory state lawmakers are grappling with how to plan for the future of California’s most precious resource.For Valley leaders, the answer is simple: add more surface storage with a new dam above Millerton Lake.Fresno Mayor Alan Autry and others led a rally at the capitol Thursday afternoon to highlight the Valley's pressing water needs.At the end of August, California’s reservoirs held 20.4 million acre feet of water, down from 29.2 million a year before.The looming threat of drought underscores the crisis, but state Democrats say they don't want to rush a solution. In this special session, Republicans are looking to get a $9 billion bond for dam building, while Democrats are advocating for about half as much money on less expensive projects. It doesn't appear either plan will make it on the February ballot. Republicans in the legislature are threatening to torpedo any solution that does not put up bonds for dam-building. But experts say dams alone won't solve the problem. In the meantime, two stubborn facts remain: California’s water supply is finite and the demands being made on that supply continue to grow. Click on the video link to watch Adam Sexton's report.
Monday, October 15, 2007
Sunday, October 14, 2007
Thursday, October 11, 2007
This article is about arsenic which is a semi-metallic naturally-occurring chemical. It is found in water which has flowed through arsenic-rich rocks into underground water supplies. It is odorless and flavorless. If poisoned, a person will usually die. There are many other health problems associated wiht arsenic, such as cancer, kidney failure, skin thickening, etc. "Environment Protection Agency of The United States of America has estimated that some 13 million of the population of USA, mostly in the western states, are exposed to arsenic in drinking- water." There are technologies used for arsenic removal in water supply, but it is costly and requires technical expertise. People just need to be more aware of the problem and take drastic measures to prevent themselves and their families from arsenic poisoning because it can happen.
Wednesday, October 10, 2007
I found a neat website that gives tips on how to conserve water and I think it is worth looking at. Just utilizing a few of these simple tips, everyone can do their part to help mend this terrifying water issue. There can be great incentives for those whose water is monitored by a meter because you can save a lot of money. I agree that there is a growing problem with the water supply and I know that doing only these tips will not fix the issue but it can be a great start.
This is a very interesting article that discusses how central valley agriculture wastes huge amounts of water. The article pointed out that alfalfa crops use the most amount of water with the least return in profits. Also, there are more conservation conscience irrigation methods that are not being put into practice. For example, drip irrigation and bedded alfalfa. Instead the farmers are using methods like flooding the crop. I found that it was interesting that there are a few alternatives that are not being practiced that would make since. The article, stated that crops could be reduced slightly to save tons of water. I think that Educating people about waste of resources is important. However, it has to start at a governmental and Big business level. After all they are setting the example.
Tuesday, October 9, 2007
Should Fresno join this campaign?
4 cities join anti-bottled water campaign
" So people who are concerned about what they put in their bodies - clean water- start to worry about what's going on outside their bodies: global warming, pollution, overflowing landfills, profligate use of fossil fuels to import and ship plastic bottles of water." - Judy Stark writer for Fresno Bee
What can we do? What should we do? What can we learn? How can we cope with the growth and natural environment? We also worry about global environmental issues on growth, pollutions, natural resource use and overuse, global warming. These are some of the issues we discuss in the class. This Blog is about discussion in the Natural Science 115 class.