A proposal that aims to create thousands of jobs in southern Illinois by kick-starting high-volume oil and gas drilling cleared a top committee Tuesday, sending it on to the House floor.
Vertical ‘Pinkhouses:’ The Future Of Urban Farming?
Detritivores are creatures that consume decaying matter. Detritivore designs use abundant waste products to make scalable technology solutions. Unlike loftier concepts of zero-waste design such as Cradle to Cradle, Detritivore design accepts that the world is already loaded with discarded and broken technology. Detritivore designers need not create a recyclable or even non-toxic product, since the materials already exist — we merely try to squeeze out whatever functionality objects may have left.
The Public Lab Spectrometry Kit is a detritivore design. It consumes waste products and uses them to search for other, more dangerous wastes. Pipe cutoffs, obsolete webcams, and optical discs are sufficient to make a functioning spectrometer. The central component, the diffraction grating, is made from CDs and DVDs, disposable media with extremely precise grooves. Long after the media written onto these discs decays into illegibility, they will still function as diffraction gratings, splitting light into a rainbow that can be quantified and used for material identification.
Mr. Obama has a firm grasp of the climate issue, and no one doubts that he cares about it. But as is often the case with this president, the question is whether he will exhibit a sense of urgency to match his intellectual understanding.
Population growth and climate change explained by Hans Rosling – The Guardian.
He’s been called the Jedi master of data visualisation, dubbed a statistics guru and introduced as the man in whose hands data sings. When it comes to celebrity statisticians, Hans Rosling is firmly on the A-list.
In the years since his first TED talk (Stats that reshape your worldview), which thrust him into the spotlight in 2006 with millions of online views, Rosling’s now signature combination of animated data graphics and theatrical presentations has featured in dozens of video clips, a BBC4 documentary on The Joy of Stats, and numerous international conferences and UN meetings.
Instead of static bar charts and histograms, Rosling, professor of global health at Sweden’s Karolinska Institute, has used a combination of toy bricks, cardboard boxes, teacups and vibrant, animated data visualisations to breathe life into statistics on health, wealth and population. With comic timing and a flair for the unusual, Rosling’s style has undoubtedly helped make data cool.
When Time magazine included him in its 2012 list of the world’s 100 most influential people, it said his “stunning renderings of the numbers … have moved millions of people worldwide to see themselves and our planet in new ways”.
However, Rosling, 64, is less convinced about his impact on how people view the world. “It’s that I became so famous with so little impact on knowledge,” he says, when asked what’s surprised him most about the reaction he’s received.
“Fame is easy to acquire, impact is much more difficult. When we asked the Swedish population how many children are born per woman in Bangladesh, they still think it’s 4-5. I have no impact on knowledge. I have only had impact on fame, and doing funny things, and so on.” He’s similarly nonplussed about being a data guru. “I don’t like it. My interest is not data, it’s the world. And part of world development you can see in numbers. Others, like human rights, empowerment of women, it’s very difficult to measure in numbers.”
Note, this includes DOI’s Adaptation Plan, at bottom!Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan
President Obama signed Executive Order 13514 on Federal Leadership in Environmental, Energy, and Economic Performance in October 2009, directing Federal agencies to become more sustainable, and create climate action plans.
Under Executive Order 13514, Federal agencies are required to develop, implement, and annually update a Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan that describes how they will achieve the environmental, economic, and energy goals mandated in the Executive Order. Agencies must prioritize actions based on a positive return on investment for the American taxpayer. The plans are updated each year, reviewed by the Council on Environmental Quality and approved by the Office of Management and Budget to ensure that actions are carefully aligned with resources, Administration priorities, and the Federal budget process.
Click on the links below to view the Department of the Interior’s Strategic Sustainability Performance Plans:
- 2012 Strategic Sustainability Performance Plan
- The Department is accepting comments on the Department of the Interior Climate Change Adaptation Plan for Fiscal Year 2013.
- A large majority of Americans (87%, down 5 percentage points since Fall 2012) say the president and the Congress should make developing sources of clean energy a “very high” (26%), “high” (32%), or medium priority (28%). Few say it should be a low priority (12%).
- Most Americans (70%, down 7 points since Fall 2012) say global warming should be a “very high” (16%), “high” (26%), or “medium priority” (29%) for the president and Congress. Three in ten (28%) say it should be a low priority.
- Six in ten Americans (59%) say the U.S. should reduce its own greenhouse gas emissions regardless of what other countries do. Relatively few (10%) say the U.S. should reduce its emissions only if other industrialized and/or developing countries do - and only 6 percent of Americans say the U.S. should not reduce its greenhouse gas emissions.
- Americans say that corporations and industry (70%), citizens themselves (63%), the U.S. Congress (57%), and the President (52%) should be doing more to address global warming.
- Majorities of Americans support:
- Providing tax rebates for people who purchase energy-efficient vehicles or solar panels (71%);
- Funding more research into renewable energy sources (70%);
- Regulating CO2 as a pollutant (68%);
- Requiring fossil fuel companies to pay a carbon tax and using the money to pay down the national debt (61%);
- Eliminating all subsidies for the fossil-fuel industry (59%);
- Expanding offshore drilling for oil and natural gas off the U.S. coast (58%);
- Requiring electric utilities to produce at least 20% of their electricity from renewable energy sources, even if it costs the average household an extra $100 a year (55%).
- Support for some of these policies, however, has fallen since 2008, including funding renewable energy research (-21 percentage points), expanding offshore drilling (-17 points), and tax rebates for energy efficient vehicles and solar panels (-15 points).
- Half of Americans (50%) have never heard of the Keystone XL pipeline. Moreover, few Americans say they are following the issue closely (18%). Among those Americans who have heard of the Keystone pipeline, about two in three support the project (63%).
The report includes an Executive Summary and reports trends in key indicators over the past several years. It can be downloaded here:
WASHINGTON, May 20 (Reuters) - Water levels in U.S.aquifers, the vast underground storage areas tapped foragriculture, energy and human consumption, between 2000 and 2008dropped at a rate that was almost three times as great as any time during the 20th century, U.S. officials said on Monday.
The accelerated decline in the subterranean reservoirs is due to a combination of factors, most of them linked to rising population in the United States, according to Leonard Konikow, a research hydrologist at the U.S. Geological Survey.
The big rise in water use started in 1950, at the time of an economic boom and the spread of U.S. suburbs. However, the steep increase in water use and the drop in groundwater levels that followed World War 2 were eclipsed by the changes during the first years of the 21st century, the study showed.
As consumers, farms and industry used more water starting in 2000, aquifers were also affected by climate changes, with less rain and snow filtering underground to replenish what was being pumped out, Konikow said in a telephone interview from Reston, Virginia.
Depletion of groundwater can cause land to subside, cut yields from existing wells, and diminish the flow of water from springs and streams.
Where is all the groundwater going?
Violence & Silence: Jackson Katz, Ph.D at TEDxFiDiWomen
Fighting Climate Change… With Puppets?