The Keystone XL Pipeline Is A Very Bad Idea – So why is the Springfield Chamber of Commerce backing it

I have no idea how much Keystone and the Koch brothers gave to the Springfield, IL Chamber but it must have been a bunch because they hired someone to coordinate their support for the project. The first I knew of it was an Editorial published in what is left of the State Journal Register. So this posting and the next are in part my preparation for writing a counter Editorial.

Rocky Kistner’s Blog

In Canada’s Tar Sands, a Dante’s Hell Threatens People Nearby and Across the Globe

In Canada’s western province of Alberta, Melina Laboucan-Massimo’s community—the Lubicon Lake Nation—has endured a withering toxic tar sands oil assault, an Armageddon against nature few Americans are fully aware of. Here in the once pristine sub-Arctic, tar sands mining operations level vast swaths of boreal forests near native lands, as pipelines burst and spew corrosive chemical-laced tar sands oil into rivers and lakes.

The Lubicon are used to living in harmony with nature. But tar sands mining has brought a deadly discordance to their environment. Melina has watched family and friends battle unheard of cancers and respiratory ailments; she’s listened to local fishermen and hunters complain about unusual lesions and tumors festering in their catches and prey. She’s reacted in disbelief as her government has sponsored airborne sharpshooters to gun down mighty Canadian wolf packs—a zero sum game that is killing one species to try to save another—as dwindling herds of caribou flee their disappearing forest homes and may be gone forever in the not so distant future.

For members of the Lubicon Lake Nation, it is a nightmare of Kafkaesque proportions. Their verdant land of abundant wildlife is metastasizing into pock-marketed battlefields of a thousand Verduns. Melina and other community leaders have not sat idly by as the environmental carnage unfolds around them. She has testified before Congress, spearheaded Greenpeace protest actions, and worked tirelessly to get the word out about the devastation in her community.


Go there and see the video. Go there and read. More tomorrow.


The World Is Ending – Well right after it doesn’t

Well really the guys point is that there will have to be fast and furious changes from a growth model economy to a static or sustainable economy for humans to survive in the civilized manner that we have gotten accustomed to. Still the world has suffered severe trauma before and humans are still here. Plus I believe the subtext of his piece is that the rest of the planet will never notice that mankind ran out of oil or even very much that the climate was destabilized by climate change. It is a really really long article so I will give you a little bit here.

Can We Avoid the Perfect Storm?

It is quite possible that by the year 2100 human life will have become extinct or will be confined to a few residential areas that have escaped the devastating effects of nuclear holocaust or global warming.
—Brian Barry1

Evolution equipped us to deal with threats from dependably loathsome enemies and fearsome creatures, but not with the opaque and cumulative long-term consequences of our own technological and demographic success. As cartoonist Walt Kelly once put it, “We’ve met the enemy, and he is us.”

Deforestation, agriculture, and the combustion of fossil fuels have committed the world to a substantial and possibly rapid warming that will last for hundreds or thousands of years. Rising temperatures, whether gradual or sudden, will progressively destabilize the global climate system, causing massive droughts, more frequent storms, rising sea level, loss of many species, and shifting ecologies, but in ways that are difficult to predict with precision in a nonlinear system. These changes will likely result in scarcities of food, energy, and resources, undermining political, social, and economic stability and amplifying the effects of terrorism and conflicts between and within nations, failed states, and regions.

Action to head off the worst of what could occur is difficult because of the complexity of nonlinear systems, with large delays between cause and effect, and because of the political and economic power of fossil fuel industries to prevent corrective action that would jeopardize their profitability. Political leadership has been absent in large part because no government is presently organized to deal with the permanent emergency of climate destabilization. The effects of procrastination will fall with increasing weight on coming generations, making our role as the primary cause of worsening climate destabilization the largest moral lapse in history.


Go there and read. More tomorrow.




Last Energy Tips For This Summer – Of course it is another energy company

I am fresh out of thoughts on this subject. It all boils down to a decision that ever American has to make. Am I going to take power from the grid or not? If I am when and how? My answer is I would prefer to not get my power from the grid and if I must then as little as possible.

Summer Energy Tips

Summer and the high temperatures it brings can cause increased electrical loads. Keep cool this summer and save energy costs by following these simple tips around the house.

Summer cooling tips

  • Turn off unnecessary lights. Much of the energy from a light bulb is heat.
  • Shut doors to unused rooms.
  • Make sure furniture or drapes do not block your registers for supply and return air.
  • Wear thin, loosely fitting clothes and you may not have to keep room temperatures as cool.
  • Keep the sun out of your house. Close blinds, shades or curtains during the hottest part of the day.
  • On mild days, open windows for natural ventilation and turn the air conditioning off.
  • Use portable or ceiling fans. Even mild air movement of 1-mph can make you feel 3-4° cooler.
  • Apply sun-control or other reflective films on south-facing windows.


Go there and read. More next week.


Summer Energy Tips – Pretty fancy digs in this one

Well even middle class and rich people gotta pitch in.

Keep Cool with Summer Home Energy Tips

Green Your Home, Slash Your Bills

The prospect of dizzying energy bills, maxed-out power grids, and killer heat waves poses a dilemma for the eco-minded. Crank up the AC, and you’ll burn through countless kilowatts — not to mention your budget. Listen to your green conscience, and you’ll pay with sweat.

But when you maximize the efficiency of your home’s cooling system and adopt smart, low-cost strategies, you can save money and still beat the heat. In fact, by eliminating wasteful habits and power guzzlers, you could cool your home with up to 50 percent less energy and save more than $400 on annual utilities. With 100 million tons of heat-trapping CO2 emitted every year as a result of residential air-conditioning, your new habits will amount to nothing less than a step toward global cooling


Go there and read. More tomorrow.


Energy Tips For The Summer – Wow this one is real long

What more can I say. This is actually a pretty thoughtful list and like I said long. I will do the first 5 or so and then:

  1. Close shades, drapes and blinds during the day (all directions).
  2. Wear light weight clothing (short sleeves, shorts, cotton).
  3. Set the air conditioning thermostat at 78 degrees or higher. Raise it a few degrees higher when away in the day. A lower air conditioning temperature makes your costs much higher. Setting your air conditioner at 70 degrees instead of 78 can almost double your operating cost!
  4. Don’t choose a lower air conditioning temperature when you first turn it on. It won’t cool faster –- whenever it’s running it’s cooling as fast as it can. Set low, it cools longer, not faster.
  5. When weather is mild, use fans instead of the air conditioner. Your central air conditioner will use about 100 times more energy than a fan at medium speed.
  6. If you have ceiling fans, run the fans and the air conditioner at the same time but set the air conditioner a few degrees higher, to 80 or 81 degrees. With the breeze from a fan, you should feel as cool as you would at 78 degrees with no fans – but you’ll reduce your costs by about 15%-25%.


Go there and read. More tomorrow.


Earth Day The Organization – I have probably posted about this group before

But posting every year gets it out there. I know that I have never posted anything from their blog. This is about Earth Day in India and I though it was cool because it shows how far the idea has spread.

Guest Blog: Corbett Foundation Mobilizes in India for Earth Day 2012

5/1/12 | Earth Day Network

Guest blog by: Zaara Kidwai

Between April 14 and 23, the Corbett Foundation (TCF) carried out a series of events and activities for Earth Day 2012 in Corbett, Kutch, Bandhavgarh and Kanha, India. We engaged schoolchildren here in a variety of interactive seminars and competitions designed to teach them and their communities about the importance of sustainable living and preserving the environment.

Throughout the week, the Corbett office of TCF organized activities such as environmental film screenings, presentations, health awareness sessions and quiz competitions for 6th-10th graders in 11 schools in and around the Corbett Tiger Reserve.

TCF–Kutch celebrated a one-day mega event on April 22 with children from two schools in Bhuj: Army Public School and Matruchaya Girls School. The event was organized in collaboration with the Gujarat Forest Department, Kutch West Division. A total of 125 students participated in the event, which included a screening of a film about conserving the Great Indian Bustard followed by a drawing and poster-making competition.

TCF-Bandhavgarh organized a nature walk for school children followed by a visit to an interpretation center. They also distributed solar lanterns to the Kulohawah village, located inside the Bandhvagrah Tiger Reserve, and organized an exhibition of traditional crafts.

TCF-Kanha organized an environmental awareness rally and a roadside clean-up in which 70 students and villagers from four villages participated. The rally started in Manjitola village; then, participants marched to the Mukki gate of the Kanha Park. Along the way, students chanted slogans like “Save Earth, Save Life, One Earth, One Chance.”

We hope our efforts will motivate people around us to adopt an environmentally-friendly lifestyle.


Go there and read. More tomorrow.


Conservation Of Energy In The Spring – Even Dominion gets into the act

Dominion is an energy company so this is actually sort of progressive. I say sort of, because if they offered real programs for solar water heaters, solar photovoltaics and geothermal at the residential level they would be on the right path. But one baby step after another I guess.

Exploring ways to save energy, money and the environment

Join Dominion in sharing ideas about how to save energy and money while helping the environment. Learn more about energy conservation from our Energy Experts.

Monday, March 16, 2009

Spring Cleaning? Add energy efficiency to the “to do” list and save money.

‘Tis the season for the chore called Spring Cleaning. For me, I have to motivate myself to get ready to clean (not my favorite household chore). But this year I am thinking about it positively, thinking of all the energy I will save.

There are some chores you may want to add to your cleaning list that will help you save energy and money leading into the cooling season.

  • Dust the lamps and lightbulbs. The dust and grime on the bulb makes it dirty, reducing the amount of light it gives off.
  • Clean your air filter. Replacing air conditioning filters allows for the system to run efficiently.
  • Clean the air return vents. Make sure drapes and furniture aren’t blocking the vents.
  • Vacuum the refrigerator coils. The dust builds up, causing the fridge to run less efficiently.
  • Thoroughly dust electronics and then unplug them when not in use.
  • Scrub the tub and then install low flow showerheads.

For tips on how to save year round, you can visit our website at

Posted by Alison@Dom

Courtney@dom Energy Conservation Analyst

Stephen@dom Energy Conservation Analyst


Go there and read. More next week.


Energy Saving Tips For The Spring – The comments are a tad more interesting than the piece

That comment is not meant to be offensive. I have seen these “tips for the (fill in a season)” before and I think people’s responses to them are fascinating.

Spring into Energy Savings

clock April 14, 2009 06:00

No winter lasts forever; no spring skips its turn.
– Hal Borland

In my part of the country, winter seems to hang on an interminably long time. So I always look forward to the first signs of spring with unbridled glee. At the first glimpse of a cherry blossom, the winter boots are banished to the back of the closet and the sandals are put to work in earnest.

But while spring may give the perfect excuse to hang up the winter coat, the advent of spring does not mean that we can pack away thoughts of energy efficiency with our wool sweaters. Last winter, Jennifer Carter gave us a number of great energy efficiency tips for winter. Now that spring’s milder temperatures are upon us and it’s time to consider what energy efficiency means in warmer weather, the Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy’s new Stay Cool, Save Money website is a great resource for efficiency tips. The site has a wealth of no-cost and low-cost advice that can help you lighten your energy load without lightening your wallet. And, for those ready to make a more long-term investment in energy savings, the site has resources to help you make well-informed decisions to get the most bang for your energy buck.

The following tips provide a taste of the energy saving-strategies that the Web site has to offer


There’s a taste. Go there and read. More tomorrow.




Spring Has Sprung In El Paso – They want you to throw open your windows

These tips are really kinda lame but at least they are trying.

As you’re doing your spring cleaning and getting your air conditioner, as well as your house, ready for the hot weather, consider making some changes around the house that will help save energy dollars this summer.

When cleaning windows, check to see if they’re in good condition.  Loose, leaky or single-paned windows allow heated or cooled air to escape, taking hard-earned dollars with it.  Repair existing windows or replace them with energy-efficient models.

  • If you leave your windows open to enjoy the weather, remember to shut off the heating system.  A thermostat will call for heat when it’s set to a temperature higher than the outside air.
  • Clean under and in back of the refrigerator.  Dust can build up in those hard-to-reach areas, causing the refrigerator to run less efficiently.  If you have an old refrigerator that was manufactured before 1993, consider replacing it with a new Energy Star-rated model.  They use half as much energy as models manufactured before 1993 and 15 percent less energy than other new models.  This change can save you hundreds of dollars a year.
  • Unplug the old, inefficient refrigerator or freezer that’s in the garage – it’s wasting energy and money.  If a second refrigerator or freezer is needed, keep it full.  Water and ice work well for this.
  • Dust or wipe light bulbs.  Clean bulbs provide more light for the money.  Replace high-use incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent bulbs and fixtures – they use two-thirds less energy and last up to 10 times longer.
  • When washing clothes, adjust the water level to match the load size, and use cold water whenever possible.  Use the dryer’s moisture sensor option that automatically shuts off the machine when the clothes are dry, and clean the lint filter before every load.  Consider hanging clothes outside to dry instead.


Go there and read. More tomorrow.


This Is Exactly What The Global Warming Models Predict – It is just 10 years early

While the world has seen a lot of human suffering since we emerged from the tree, this is getting ridiculous. All the deniers and decriers better get ready for a rough ride.,0,4813011.story

2011 saw record number of high-cost weather disasters

The U.S. experienced a dozen natural disasters that each caused at least $1 billion in damages this year.

By Mara Lee, Hartford CourantDecember 8, 2011

Reporting from Hartford, Conn.—

The United States had a dozen weather disasters that each caused at least $1 billion in damages in 2011, the greatest frequency of severe weather that caused costly losses in more than 30 years of federal government tracking.

However, even with the number of events, the total losses this year from the storms, flooding and droughts is $52 billion, not even close to the most expensive year on record, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

In 2005, Hurricane Katrina alone cost $145 billion in today’s dollars. It was the most expensive natural disaster in U.S. history and, with more than 1,800 deaths, the highest fatality toll since a 1928 hurricane in south Florida.

The disasters in 2011 caused more than 600 deaths, the agency said. The Groundhog Day blizzard, Hurricane Irene, many tornadoes and drought-fueled wildfires in Texas, New Mexico and Arizona crossed the $1-billion threshold.

The increase in losses from hurricanes has more to do with population growth and increased home building near beaches than it does with climate change, scientists from NOAA say.

But, they added, “there is evidence that climate change may affect the frequency of certain extreme weather events. An increase in population and development in flood plains, along with an increase in heavy rain events in the U.S. during the past 50 years, have gradually increased the economic losses due to flooding. If the climate continues to warm, the increase in heavy rain events is likely to continue. There are projections that the incidence of extreme droughts will increase if the climate warms throughout the 21st century.”


More tomorrow.