President Obama says the U.S. government “must lead by example” when it comes to safeguarding the environment, so he’s ordering federal agencies to use more clean energy.
Under a presidential memorandum out Thursday, each agency would have until 2020 to get 20 percent of its electricity from renewable supplies.
“Government agencies currently get less than 10 percent of their electricity from renewable sources such as solar and wind,” NPR’s Richard Harris reports. He adds that:
“The executive order tells agencies they should aim for doubling that, to 20 percent, by the year 2020. Agencies are supposed to build their own facilities when they can, or buy clean energy from wind farms and solar facilities.”
The memo also directs federal agencies to increase energy efficiency in its buildings and its power management systems.
Embarrassed because sub-“living wage” stories often played in left leaning media outlets (including Mother Jones) to demonize companies such as MacDonalds and Walmart, the magazine had to clarify their position:
That’s actually not true, we’ve never advised interns or fellows to sign up for food stamps. It is true that the stipend level qualifies them for food stamps, as do most internships, and our HR director has, in the context of explaining their stipend, said as much, but we’ve never encouraged anyone to sign up.
Perhaps sensing that it wasn’t as satisfactory explanation, Mother Jones again clarified:
As a nonprofit investigative news organization, this is an issue that Mother Jones has always felt strongly about, which is why we have been paying our interns a substantive stipend longer than many the industry. It’s also why, as of January 1, our 2014 budget increases the base fellowship stipend to $1,500—an amount equivalent to slightly more than California minimum wage.
Which would put their new and improved intern wages pretty close to the hourly wage of the average chain fast food/big box retailer. Whom have been pilloried for suggesting to their employees that public assistance may be viable options to make ends meet.
Bill O’Reilly’s first invocation of Nelson Mandela following his death Thursday night was in a segment with Rick Santorum on the future of the Republican party. But that wasn’t the strangest part of it, it was when O’Reilly felt the need to declare, a number of times, that Mandela was a communist.
And how did Santorum respond?
Santorum, for his part, spoke highly of Mandela standing up against a “great injustice,” and he argued that the United States faces similar injustice in the form of the “ever-increasing size of government that is taking over and controlling people’s lives, and Obamacare is at the front and center of that.”
That’s right, Rick “man-on-dog” Santorum just compared opposition to Obamacare to Mandela’s decades long struggle against Apartheid.
I always thought they couldn’t get cancer.
A tumor on the lower jaw of a great white shark, near the Neptune Islands, South Australia. It’s the first documented tumor in this species. Image: Andrew Fox and Sam Cahir
Scientists have known for more than 150 years that sharks get cancer. And yet the belief persists that the animals don’t suffer from the disease.
That misconception is promoted in part by those who sell shark cartilage, who claim that the substance will help cure cancer, said David Shiffman, a shark researcher and doctoral student at the University of Miami. But no studies have shown that shark cartilage is an effective treatment, and the demand for the material has helped decimate shark populations, researchers say: Humans kill about 100 million sharks per year, according to a March 2013 study (although many factors contribute to the killing of sharks, including demand for shark-fin soup).
From the California Federation of Teachers:
Cool! No doubt Glenn Greenwald will think this is aimed specifically at him. Be afraid, dudebros, be very afraid.
he Naval Research Lab just launched a drone from a submerged submarine - giving a huge edge to the future of special operations.
It took six years to develop and launch an all-electric, fuel cell-powered, folding-wing drone aircraft from a submerged submarine. The eXperimental Fuel Cell Unmanned Aerial System, or XFC UAS, was fired from the submarine’s torpedo tube using a “Sea Robin” launch system, which is designed to fit within an empty Tomahawk launch canister used for launching Tomahawk cruise missiles.
The vintage Super Guppy aircraft is quite a story in and of itself.
NASA’s Orion spacecraft is just about ready to turn up the heat. The spacecraft’s heat shield arrived at the agency’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida Wednesday night aboard the agency’s Super Guppy aircraft.
The heat shield, the largest of its kind ever built, is to be unloaded Thursday and is scheduled for installation on the Orion crew module in March, in preparation for Orion’s first flight test in September 2014.
The heat shield completion and delivery to Kennedy, where Orion is being prepared, is a major step toward Exploration Flight Test-1 next year,” said Dan Dumbacher, NASA’s deputy associate administrator for exploration systems development in Washington. “Sending Orion into space for the first time is going to give us crucial data to improve our design decisions and develop Orion to send humans on future missions to an asteroid and Mars.”
Here’s one way we could fight pollution and climate change, that you may not have thought of.
In a little corner of the Great Plains, corn growers are using proven methods to cut their carbon footprint.
The tri-state corner of Minnesota, South Dakota and Iowa is marked by rolling hills dotted with trees, a transition between the dry prairies and woodlands. Recently, it has become a laboratory for more sustainable corn, and one research team has found that the processes used can cut carbon emissions by more than half from the national average.
WASHINGTON — If atheists want their country to be free and safe, they should encourage people to worship God, Texas Republican Rep. Louie Gohmert argued Thursday during a House floor speech.
Gohmert, who has a penchant for tweaking people who do not believe in God, was delivering a speech about the lack of attention given to Christians who are persecuted around the world.
Although he also declared that Christianity is the most persecuted religion in the world, as an aside he argued that only nations that turned away from the Judeo-Christian god have ceased to exist.
“No country has ever fallen while it was truly honoring the god of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob,” Gohmert said.