May 26, 2015
This May 2013 file photo shows wood bison at the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage. A herd of female bison bred at the center were re-introduced into the wild in Alaska’s Interior earlier this year. Now several bulls are en route to join them by barge.
Loren Holmes / ADN
FAIRBANKS — Four bison bulls are making their way toward an experimental mating herd established this spring near the far western Interior town of Shageluk.
The Fairbanks Daily News-Miner reports the male wood bison from the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center near Anchorage were loaded Saturday onto a barge headed down the Tanana and Yukon rivers in the final phase of a 20-year plan to re-establish the mammal where it was prevalent a century ago.
Alaska Department of Fish and Game spokeswoman Cathie Harms says their four-day trip will take them to a herd of 100 cows and calves that were flown there in April.
Harms says males weren’t needed right away and could take the slower, cheaper river route.
If the herd is successful, 16 bulls will be added.
Well, here are published facts concluding that man’s direct action both caused and repaired the hole in the ozone layer:
It’s pretty silly in this day and age to think that man has no bearing on our planet’s climate. But sadly, we have a large neanderthal element in the USA that believes snakes can talk, a man built a big boat carrying millions of different species to safety 40 days later, an invisible superman exists in the sky that wants our team to win a football game, and that man cannot affect the Earth’s climate because …Jesus.
The operator of an underground pipeline that ruptured and released up to 105,000 gallons of crude oil in Santa Barbara County — and tens of thousands of gallons into the ocean — said Wednesday that the spill happened after a series of mechanical problems caused the line to be shut down.
The problems began about 10:45 a.m. Tuesday at two pump stations that move oil through the 11-mile pipeline along the Gaviota Coast, Rick McMichael, director of pipeline operations for Plains All American Pipeline, said at a news conference.
The company said its estimate of 105,000 gallons spilled west of Santa Barbara is a worst-case scenario that was based on the line’s elevation and flow rate — which averages about 50,400 gallons an hour.
Investigators won’t find a cause for the rupture until they excavate the 24-inch wide line, which was installed in 1987, according to a joint statement from government and company officials.
Oil tycoon Harold Hamm told a University of Oklahoma dean last year that he wanted certain scientists there dismissed who were studying links between oil and gas activity and the state’s nearly 400-fold increase in earthquakes, according to the dean’s e-mail recounting the conversation.
Hamm, the billionaire founder and chief executive officer of Oklahoma City-based Continental Resources, is a major donor to the university, which is the home of the Oklahoma Geological Survey. He has vigorously disputed the notion that he tried to pressure the survey’s scientists. “I’m very approachable, and don’t think I’m intimidating,” Hamm was quoted as saying in an interview with EnergyWire, an industry publication, that was published on May 11. “I don’t try to push anybody around.”
Yet an e-mail obtained from the university by Bloomberg News via a public records request says Hamm used a blunt approach during a 90-minute meeting last year with the dean whose department includes the geological survey.
“Mr. Hamm is very upset at some of the earthquake reporting to the point that he would like to see select OGS staff dismissed,” wrote Larry Grillot, the dean of the university’s Mewbourne College of Earth and Energy, in a July 16, 2014, e-mail to colleagues at the university. Hamm also expressed an interest in joining a search committee charged with finding a new director for the geological survey, according to Grillot’s e-mail. And, the dean wrote, Hamm indicated that he would be “visiting with Governor [Mary] Fallin on the topic of moving the OGS out of the University of Oklahoma.”
Cisterns, gray water usage, conservation. Oh by the way why are building permits for new residential structures still being issued at a pre drought pace? Because or government needs the permit fees and taxes. Because birthrate and immigration are population pressures that are allowed to trump drought/water supply worries. Which of course only reduces the amount left to us folks asked to conserve. Or quit growing (fill in blank to suit critics of agriculture), or quit making drinking water.
When is a drought not just a drought but in fact a political weapon being used by critics of big business, real or imagined excess profit margins, etc? Right now right here. If you are a critic you say “Big agriculture”. Which of course is the only way to feed tens to hundreds of millions of people.
Big agriculture aka breakfast, lunch and dinner. Had a longish discussion on another Page just the other day, where several unrelated issues got dragged into the discussion. Nestle, WalMart, bottled water margins. Just questioning the connection between these issues and the drought got me accused of being a republican. *Gasp!* So anyway that’s just an illustration of strong emotions coming into the issue, understandable.
But this year #droughtshaming - the act of naming-and-shaming water-wasters on social media - has taken on a new, class-conscious, anti-corporate life of its own.
Thing is there is no end in sight to the drought.
Severe Ancient Droughts: A Warning to California
BEGINNING about 1,100 years ago, what is now California baked in two droughts, the first lasting 220 years and the second 140 years. Each was much more intense than the mere six-year dry spells that afflict modern California from time to time, new studies of past climates show. The findings suggest, in fact, that relatively wet periods like the 20th century have been the exception rather than the rule in California for at least the last 3,500 years, and that mega-droughts are likely to recur.
The evidence for the big droughts comes from an analysis of the trunks of trees that grew in the dry beds of lakes, swamps and rivers in and adjacent to the Sierra Nevada, but died when the droughts ended and the water levels rose. Immersion in water has preserved the trunks over the centuries.
Just a few months ago, the state’s top water officials said they had reason for optimism. Rain was cascading down on California in December and water conservation passed 20%.
“I, for one, had high hopes,” Mark Cowin, director of the state Department of Water Resources, told a California Senate joint oversight hearing on the drought last week.
Cowin and his colleagues sat before lawmakers and took turns delivering a series of sobering facts and figures about the state’s persistent drought: The mountain snowpack was dismal; conservation is falling far short of Gov. Jerry Brown’s 25% mandate; officials are curtailing water rights.
One fact in particular caught senators’ attention, though. About 1,900 wells have gone dry, Cowin said.
For those who would still deny the connection between all us billions running on carbon everything almost and the changes shown I submit natures closing argument. A 10,000 year old ice formation will be gone or close to it. Poof. Melted away in all it’s giga tonnage of fresh water into the sea. Cubic miles of water. I submit my own small analogy from the kitchen. This is what we are doing. Accelerated for your convenience.
For those of us who have come to the conclusion along with the previous scientific reports and analysis, well we have another benchmark to watch. SMH
A new NASA study finds the last remaining section of Antarctica’s Larsen B Ice Shelf, which partially collapsed in 2002, is quickly weakening and likely to disintegrate completely before the end of the decade.
A team led by Ala Khazendar of NASA’s Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in Pasadena, California, found the remnant of the Larsen B Ice Shelf is flowing faster, becoming increasingly fragmented and developing large cracks. Two of its tributary glaciers also are flowing faster and thinning rapidly.
“These are warning signs that the remnant is disintegrating,” Khazendar said. “Although it’s fascinating scientifically to have a front-row seat to watch the ice shelf becoming unstable and breaking up, it’s bad news for our planet. This ice shelf has existed for at least 10,000 years, and soon it will be gone.”
The El Niño climate phenomenon is almost certain to last through the Northern Hemisphere summer, the U.S. weather forecaster said, raising the chance of heavy rain in the southern United States as well as South America, and scorching heat in Asia that could devastate crops of thirsty food staples like rice.
El Niño also reduces the likelihood of a busy hurricane season, which lasts from June to November and can disrupt energy operations in the Gulf of Mexico.
In its monthly report released on Thursday, the National Weather Service’s Climate Prediction Center (CPC) said El Niño, a phenomenon which warms sea-surface temperatures in the Pacific, had a 90 percent likelihood of continuing through the summer. In April it estimated the odds at 70 percent.
El Niño conditions will likely last through the end of the year, the CPC said, pegging the chance at 80 percent.
“Absolutely not. In fact, if I could increase it, I would.”
“If I stop bottling water tomorrow,” said Brown, “people would buy another brand of bottled water. As the second largest bottler in the state, we’re filling a role many others aren’t filling. It’s driven by consumer demand, it’s driven by an on-the-go society that needs to hydrate.
This was the answer Nestlé Waters North America CEO Tim Brown gave when Jay Famiglietti, a hydrologist at NASA’s Jet Propulsion Lab, asked him whether he would ever consider moving his company’s bottling operations out of California during an interview with AirTalk’s Larry Mantle.
“If I stop bottling water tomorrow,” said Brown, “people would buy another brand of bottled water. As the second largest bottler in the state, we’re filling a role many others aren’t filling. It’s driven by consumer demand, it’s driven by an on-the-go society that needs to hydrate. Frankly, we’re very happy [consumers] are doing it in a healthier way.”
As the Golden State wheezes its way through a historic drought, criticism for bottled water companies operating factories here has been harsh. Just over a week after a Mother Jones investigation, Starbucks announced that it would be moving bottling operations for its Ethos Water brand from California to Pennsylvania because of severe drought conditions. A day before the Mother Jones story broke, Brown wrote an op-ed in the San Bernardino Sun on why the bottled water industry isn’t contributing to the drought.
On Tuesday, Nestlé said that it is investing $7 million on technology and upgrades that would turn its Modesto milk factory into a “zero water” by extracting water from the milk production process and using it in factory operations.
“We have these cooling towers [for milk] that use water,” says Brown. “Previously, that would have been fresh water that we would’ve drawn out of the municipal supply. Now, we can use our own water that had come previously from the milk. That water, normally, would’ve gone into the waste stream. Now it can be reused or recycled.”
The arrogance and entitlement is French Revolution level.
Alaska Dispatch News
May 12, 2015
Nearly a hundred wood bison roaming free in the area of the Lower Innoko and Yukon rivers are adjusting after being released into the wild last month, according to the Alaska Department of Fish and Game.
The agency said Tuesday that the animals’ eating, roaming and herding habits are what they should be for wood bison in the wild.
The animals were flown to Western Alaska in the beginning of April from the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center. Before their reintroduction, the species had been extinct in Alaska for more than a century.
Cathie Harms, Fish and Game’s regional program manager with the Division of Wildlife Conservation, said that the day after their release some of the bison wandered as far as 10 miles away and were soon wary of humans.
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Updated to add the source.
Alaska News Dispatch
May 1, 2015
Biologists monitoring the new Innoko River wood bison herd got a pleasant surprise last month during an aerial survey of the animals: a bison calf, the first born in the wild in at least 100 years.
The calf was seen April 23, according to Cathie Harms, Alaska Department of Fish and Game regional program manager. She said Fish and Game does the survey every few days, so it’s unclear when the calf was born, but it was likely only a few days before. And on Friday, biologists spotted yet another calf.
The biologists celebrated their discovery.
“It felt like having a baby shower or something. It’s just huge,” Harms said. “It’s like the completion of the circle. We finally got animals into the wild and they are taking to it tremendously.”
Harms said about 25 pregnant cows were moved from the Alaska Wildlife Conservation Center in Portage to the Innoko River region in March to establish the population. The animals have a nine-month gestation period, and Harms said many of the calves conceived at the center, 60 miles south of Anchorage, are expected to be born from late April through June.