Category Archives: earth

BTW the Aral Sea is Back from the Dead!

The Aral Sea was one of the great environmental disasters of the world.

The Aral Sea was once the world’s fourth-largest lake, covering 26,000 square miles on the border of Kazakhstan and Uzbekistan. But in the 1960s, the Soviet government redirected the Amu Darya and Syr Darya rivers for agricultural projects, robbing the Aral of water. It started shrinking, and the lake split in two by 1990. By 2003 the water level had fallen 72 feet,

That leads to stuff like this

Image result for aral sea 1950

The sea essentially died.

But the story is not over!

… the World Bank … finance(d) construction of the $85-million Kok-Aral Dam. The 8-mile dam, which opened in 2005, allowed more water to flow into the smaller Northern Aral Sea, increasing its volume 68 percent by 2008. Almost a decade later, the Aral is returning to life.

Image result for kok aral dam

And the Aral Sea is coming back to life!

Say Goodbye to Arctic Drilling … for now

Big news from the Obamatron

President Barack Obama will use his executive authority to permanently block offshore drilling in large swaths of the Arctic and Atlantic oceans, the White House announced Tuesday.

It is a policy wonk’s way of saying “Up yours Donald!” And it is a way to create a legacy that Trump will have to deal with. Trump may take steps to undo this, but he will need to expend political capital to do so.

It is finally a bit of good news for humanity! Perhaps we will wake up to climate change fast enough to avoid its worst effects. The race is on and the load of poop in our pants that is Donald Trump is about to slow us down as we run that race.

Stay tuned!

Copenhagen: Is that a Ski Slope on Your Power Plant?

There is no doubt any more. The Danes are a bit mad. But mad in a good way. They make tough decisions. Like this one.

Copenhagen is finding many creative ways to move forward as part of its ongoing mission to become the world’s first zero-carbon city by 2025. …

And then they add to them

Next year, the city will open one of the world’s largest artificial ski ramps on the roof of a green power plant. The ski slope was specifically designed as part of the waste-to-power incinerator. The building will not only help Copenhagen on its mission of being more eco-friendly, it is meant to draw tourists to its roof.

Skiing on the roof of an incinerator? Why not?

Drinking Water from Thin Air?

This is a cool idea

We all know now how good solar panels can be in terms of harvesting natural energy from the sun and saving us money in the process.  Now, a company called Zero Mass Water has taken that one step further and have managed to extract clean, drinkable water straight from the air using their special solar panels.

I like the corporate vision

CEO of the company, Cody Friesen, says “We started this company to provide water to everyone, everywhere.”

Image result for Zero Mass Water

Here is a cool video


Tree Huggers Get riled Up in Washington State!

There is a growing sense that climate change presents an urgent challenge to humanity. The sense that concern is growing is good, but is it growing fast enough to deliver policy changes that will avert disaster?

Sadly,  the answer to that question is more murky. Take the situation in Washington State. In next week’s election, voters may approve a carbon tax. that would be a huge step forward. But .. and this is a big but, that ballot initiative may fail because some on the left are not satisfied with the proposal. They say it does not go far enough to re-distribute tax proceeds to the poor.

Yikes! Building coalitions around policy choices aint easy. And that is a sobering realization.

FOLLOW – Ryan Ellis writes that voters should oppose this as a tax increase.