Category Archives: Environment

Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Climate Change – YouTube

Muller was a go to guy for many climate deniers the last decade, so it’s nice that he’s finally discovered that the Malankovitch cycle, vulcanism, and other half baked theories of global warming are wrong, and that only CO2 accounts for our warming. Of course scientists knew that back in the fifties, and Isaac Asimov tried to convince folks back in the sixties, however the right is still in fossil fuel funded denial to this day.

Richard Muller: I Was Wrong on Climate Change – YouTube.

Arctic Ice Breaks Up in Beaufort Sea Back in March

A series of intense storms in the Arctic has caused fracturing of the sea ice around the Beaufort Sea along the northern coasts of Alaska and Canada. High-resolution imagery from the Suomi NPP satellite shows the evolution of the cracks forming in the ice, called leads, from February 17 — March 18 2013. The general circulation of the area is seen moving the ice westward along the Alaskan coast.

via Arctic Ice Breaks Up in Beaufort Sea – YouTube.

The Truth About Global Warming – Science & Distortion – Stephen Schneider

Some of the very same people who were telling people that there weren’t relationships between lung cancer and tobacco use are the ones now telling us that global warming doesn’t matter. Please watch, and get mad – I don’t want my grandson’s grandson to live in a limited brutal future that most probably will result if we don’t start acting now.

Stephen Henry Schneider (February 11, 1945 — July 19, 2010) was Professor of Environmental Biology and Global Change at Stanford University, a Co-Director at the Center for Environment Science and Policy of the Freeman Spogli Institute for International Studies and a Senior Fellow in the Stanford Woods Institute for the Environment. Schneider served as a consultant to federal agencies and White House staff in the Richard Nixon, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan, George H. W. Bush, Bill Clinton, George W. Bush and Barack Obama administrations.

His research included modeling of the atmosphere, climate change, and "the relationship of biological systems to global climate change." Schneider was the founder and editor of the journal Climatic Change and authored or co-authored over 450 scientific papers and other publications. He was a Coordinating Lead Author in Working Group II IPCC TAR and was engaged as a co-anchor of the Key Vulnerabilities Cross-Cutting Theme for the Fourth Assessment Report (AR4) at the time of his death. During the 1980s, Schneider emerged as a leading public advocate of sharp reductions of greenhouse gas emissions to combat global warming.

Basic Information

Awards

MacArthur Fellowship (1992), Nobel Peace Prize (2007)

via The Truth About Global Warming – Science & Distortion – Stephen Schneider – YouTube.

About Those Paper Yard Waste Bags & How Many You Can Put Out in Lenexa

When Kasey and I walk we often stop to talk to neighbors when we see them working in their yards. Usually the conversation revolves around the weather, dogs, or how badly the Chiefs are doing. However since the beginning of 2012 when the new waste management contracts went into place for Lenexa the most common complaint is about having to use paper bags for leaves and yard waste. Since we are at the last weekly pickups before the reduced or zero pickup Winter season, I thought I’d better share some information.

So I dug into the reasons why they are needed, and here’s the best explanation in a video:

As you can see this is a far better way to compost than any home composting operation, and it ultimately saves space and extends the life of the Johnson County Landfill. You can also get some of the great compost for free if you need it for your yard or garden.

I think one of the reasons people complain about the paper bags is the cost of them compared to plastic. I expect that those costs will drop over time as more outlets make the bags “loss leaders” to bring in customers and to advertise. After tons more of them are sold in bulk the initial capital investments for the bag manufacturing gear will get fully paid for and depreciated, and the price wars on them will really start; but until we get there I recommend that you just wait for sales of the 25 packs and buy 2-3 bundles then.

Another reason is that they are a bit harder to manage & fill  than plastic but if you don’t overfill them, and use a collapsible hoop funnel then things get much easier. I highly recommend using one of these:

 

 

 

There is some seasonality to how much they will pick up, and it also varies between services.

 

Below are the schedules:
Spring through early Fall, March through September:

Late Fall, October and November:

  • Deffenbaugh: 10 bags or bundles per week
  • Superior: 8 bags or bundles per week

Winter: December, January, February:

  • Deffenbaugh: 6 bags or bundles on the third full week of the month only
  • Superior: no yard waste pick ups, or no bags.

The amount of bags and the Winter 3rd full week pickups are reasons why you see folks who have large trees and lots of yard waste using Deffenbaugh instead of Superior; just to be clear it only applies within the City of Lenexa, most other places Deffenbaugh does not pick up at all during Winter months.

One last word on leaves: I’ve seen some neighbors try to cheat by dumping leaves into the creek, and that’s totally wrong — it causes high potassium and low Oxygen, which can kill the fingerling fish and small fry in these creeks. Rotting piles of leaves are also sources for molds, slimes, germs, fungi, and other allergens that neighborhood kids and pets will end up playing in, and it’s also against city regulations. Putting your leaves in culverts and creeks and can clog storm drains downstream which can in turn flood houses. (This I know well because I helped clean out the flooded basement of a friend at the bottom of Noland road a few years back, I left with a broken thumb after slipping on the muddy stairs but we got the job done.) So please have a thought for your neighbors and don’t put those leaves in the street drains or creeks.

*bundles of sticks and branches must be shorter than 4′ and weigh less than 50 lbs. Bundles count as one bag.

Friday Morning Hodgepodge

Here’s a Friday hodge podge of updates.

Since Glen Beck is picking this weekend instead of the three day Labor Day weekend seven days later for his Teaparty rally you have to wonder if he’s not just targeting that day because its’ Martin Luther King day. With his John Birch Society leanings you also have to wonder where the heck he’s going to go with it, but I’m expecting more history rewrites and more obfuscation and redirection from the real principles in our constitution.

I’m beginning to wonder if the pols on the right aren’t just occasionally feeding tinder and funds to the Anti-mosque madness simply because it keeps the press focus off of their wingnuts and whackos, like Buck, Angle, Miller, and Rand. Long time readers here and at LGF know that the anti-mosque movement is imported by Robert Spencer and Pamela Geller from the far right Eurofascist parties, and I suspect that they will get re distanced a bit later after they stop becoming a useful distraction and turn into a dangerous one. Geller is particularly pernicious, with birtherism, support of neo nazis, eurofascists, and white supremacists in her background. (e.g. I’ve pointed out in the past without naming her blog how she picks up stories from Neo nazis, and I’ve detailed the fascist tendencies of Vlaams Belang and their friends that she supports in Europe. Here and Here. )

The election in Alaska is turning interesting, and that has to be a voter turn out thing — in the general Murkowski would heartily thump Miller, and I suspect that’s what will happen if she runs 3rd party. She still has a chance with the recount since the absentee ballots are likely to favor her and not miller.

The teaparty movement has served up a series of real whackjobs — viscerally many elder GOP conservatives want to agree with these candidates because of the anti government sentiment but when you start saying “What about your Social Security?” “What about your Medicare?” “What about your rights?” they sometimes start thinking…

Personal Update

Now that the weight restrictions are off my arms (previously I had serious potential to displace the split in my sternum with too much pressure across it.) I’m catching up on things long overdue at the house, including some yardwork. It feels good to be able to do productive work again and not have to rely on my wife to lift and carry. She was definitely a trooper throughout this ordeal and I do love her dearly for that support.

So far I’ve cleaned out the Smoker, installed a outdoor yard faucet , repaired a chandelier and Frankenputer, and jury rigged a tail light lens for my daughter who got her tail light capsule stolen. On the remainder of the leftovers list are installing two new bathroom faucets, repairing the humidifier before winter, and installing an outdoor electric outlet (I’m converting everything outside to electric from gas for yard work except the lawn tractor to cut down on personally generated carbon output. This doesn’t help a great deal yet since much of the power in Kansas is coal generated, but some comes across the power inter-tie from the zero carbon Wolf Creek facility. By time those items get done it will be time for grub pellets, fertilizer, and then leaf raking in the yard.

Meanwhile, Kasey says “It’s Friday! Have a great weekend! Don’t forget to visit the park with me either buddy, I’m tired of running the edge of this fence…”