Oh, Kinder Morgan. When you’re not busy blowing up gas pipelines, bribing ship captains to dump waste at sea, or spilling coal dust into the Mississippi then you’re probably scheming to build a huge tar sands pipeline to the Salish Sea. And while locals worry about oil spills, you say things like this:
Pipeline spills can have both positive and negative effects on local and regional economies, both in the short and long-term… Spill response and cleanup creates business and employment opportunities for affected communities, regions and cleanup service providers.
On a related note, Cliff Mass breaks down the extreme hazards that the Northwest’s weather and marine environment poses for large-scale coal and oil plans. He highlights the particular risks of Puget Sound and the Columbia River bar.
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Yet in a mind-bendingly stupid editorial, the Oregonian editorial board goes after Governor Kitzhaber for opposing Ambre Energy’s ill-conceived proposal to export 8 million tons of coal from two sites on the south side of the Columbia River. If you live in Oregon, please consider sending them a letter.
Another author crush of mine, Teju Cole, paints a brief, poignant, and stark picture of the crisis of the Nigerian girls kidnapped by Boko Haram.
Perhaps I’m in the wrong business: four hedge fund guys handily out-earned every kindergarten teacher in America.
I enjoyed this piece from Ben Adler at Grist on why there is no liberal equivalent to climate change denial.
I recently started an online course in mapping, and though I’m a bit of a paper map geek, I really had/have no idea what kind of digital resources are out there. Here’s one that you can drop some time into—ESRI’s ChangeMatters set, which shows vegetation changes between 1975 and 2010. In playing around, I found two things: 1) Seattle’s Capitol Hill reservoir did indeed turn into a park (shocking for Seattleites, I know, but fun to see map form) and 2) the vegetation on the Mount Vernon, Washington, area farmlands changes frequently, presumably when plowed or planted. What changes do you see in your favorite Cascadian place and why?
If you were waiting for the movie of the just-released National Climate Assessment, it’s here, and it’s scary: scary like only the truth can be.
“Nearly one-third of [the World Bank’s] PDF reports had never been downloaded, not even once. Another 40 percent of their reports had been downloaded fewer than 100 times. Only 13 percent had seen more than 250 downloads in their lifetimes.”