Tuesday, August 29, 2006

Polar Bears

The Artic ice cap at the top of our world has shrunk by 20% since 1979, more than 1,000,000 square miles. The shrinking ice pack could have irreversible effects on the mighty beast of the north, the Polar Bear.

The population of the bear is estimated currently to be only 20,000. Scientist estimate at the current rate of receding ice, the bear population could be adversely effected by 30% (6,000).

It's time to take a look at our carbon footprint on the world and it's flora and fauna.

Monday, August 28, 2006


There is a great debate about the viability of and cost effectiveness of biofuels, those fuels created from renewable sources. The Washington Post articulates the issues very well in this article http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2006/06/30/AR2006063001480.html.

The discussion details acreage required, and studies the net energy output of ethanol as well as some other considerations.

Friday, August 11, 2006

Chiquita Goes Green

I'm not talking about green bananas. You never know where interesting and relevant information will appear. In this months Business 2.0, they featured Chiquita new green policies. One of their managers responsible for farms in Costa Rica started quietly working with environmental groups in the early 90s. The results were not only better for the environment but also the banana business' bottomline.

They has subsequently reduced the amount of fertilizers and pesticides by 26% and apply more environmental friendly chemicals. They build buffer zones around the farms to help control erosion and the run off that effects the water quality both in surface and ground water. They recycle plastics and twine used on the farms. They've also improved the living conditions and built schools for the workers.

I hope more commercial based farming follows their example as I'll be looking for Chiquita brands products in the stores.

Thursday, August 03, 2006

Substanable Farming

It wasn't too long ago when I just went along without questioning our government officials and their policies. I figured that with the collection of some of the best minds in the country assembled in our nations capital there was no way that they would intentionally harm our country. Oh how I have learned how big business (equals big donations) drives our nations most important policies.

Farm policy today is harming our nation. Yes it maximizes production but at what cost and to whose benefit? One would think marketplace efficiency in farming would be beneficial as most efficiencies are in business and economics. On the farm, we stopped rotating crops,we feed our cattle corn, as a matter of fact some companies advertise their beef is corn fed. Interestingly enough, cows are meant to eat grass (natures solar collectors) in large pastures where grazing improves soil quality. Instead we grow massive amounts of corn which farmers sell to the large agribusiness at a loss and then we pay them subsidies. Corn is not natural in the diet of our beef. It harms their health by upsetting the natural balance in their digestive systems. We have to feed them antibiotics to keep from getting too sick. We have the beef stand in their own manure most of their lives eating a caloric rich diet to fatten them up for market with virtually no exercise.

When was the last time you drove past farms in the Midwest where you saw fields of tomatoes or green peppers? I can tell you it's since the corn subsidies took over our farm system. Agribusiness buys corn that farmers sold at a loss that was subsidized by our tax dollars so they could buy CHEAP raw materials to turn into high fructose corn syrup and other chemicals. When was the last time you drove past a pasture of cows in the Midwest? It's all corn now or soybeans. The cows are no longer stay on the farms they are sent to the concentration camps to be fattened on a diet they cant really digest.

By fattening the wallets of agribusiness, we as a nation are polluting our ground water and streams with excess nitrates and other petrochemical. (nearly 30% of all oil imports go into the farm in chemical fertilizer, pesticides, and transportation) We are severely polluting the land around these livestock businesses with feces so concentrating that nature can no longer properly recycle the waste. The soils are becoming so depleted that more petrochemical fertilizers are required to keep the crops growing. Iowa alone has lost 2 inches of its rich topsoil in the quarter century through improper crop rotation.

It's time to look for policies that will protect the land, and hence the real farmer, so that our generations to come will have a healthy food supply that is grown in their own country.

Friday, July 14, 2006

Green House Gases

In a report by the EPA titled US Inventory of Greenhouse Gas Emissions and Sinks from 1990 to 2004 CO2 emissions rose 19.6%.

Methane actually shrank 9.9% over the same period. The decline was buffered by an increase in "manure management" with an increase of 26.4%, the feeding of our livestock on commercial feeding lots.

N2O also was in decline, giving a 2.1% decrease. "Manure management" increased over the same period of time 8.8% and human sewage emissions increased 24.2%.

HFC, PFCs and SFs discharge increased a whopping 57.5%.

All total the reports indicates there was a 21.1% increase of green house gas emmissions over the measured period of time. No comment is necessary as the facts speak for themselves.

Thursday, July 13, 2006

Melting Glaciers

I love ice water! Especially with a little lemon. The rate the ice is melting in Greenland, is not to my like or to the scientists. For the near decade between 1988 and 1996 the Kangerdlugssuaq glacier moved at a rate of 3.1 and 3.7 miles a year. Its now moving at a rate of almost 9 miles an hour. What is contributing to the three fold in movement or melting? What is the effect on the surrounding seawater as all this new ice water flows out to sea? What will be the impact to the sea level is yet to be determined?

An yet many so called experts are telling us there is no such thing as global warming......

What does the real evidence and data support?

For one thing its way too much ice water for me even with a little lemon.

Wednesday, July 12, 2006

Al Gore

I've never been a fan of the technocrat Al Gore, but i must give him credit for his work on global warming. His recent documentary An Inconvenient Truth will receive the prestigious Humanitas Prize, which honors screenwriting that helps "liberate, enrich and unify society."

My congratulations to Al for his important work.