Using Imported Water In A Water Feature Is Green Because The Sign Says It’s Green.

Town Square Las Vegas Using Imported Water In Water Feature.The geniuses that brought you the saying: “The Beatings Will Continue Until Morale Improves” now bring you the “Town Square Las Vegas cares about the environment and the community. We use imported water in our water feature.” sign. The beatings/morale message was laughable. The environmentally clueless water feature sign… unfortunate. [Sociological Images via Boing Boing]

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China Consumes Almost As Much Coal As The Rest Of The World Combined.

China Coal Consumption vs Rest Of The World

Graphic from Washington Post

I might have figured out one major contributor to China’s deadly smog.

Burning coal to supply electricity to 1+ billion people will have adverse side-effects – off the charts air pollution is just the visible one. [ThinkProgress]

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Everything You Need To Know About Tar Sand Oil And Keystone XL In One Video.

The Keystone XL Tar Sands Climate Threat video perfectly explains the environmental costs of the tar sand oil and the importance of President Obama’s decision to build, or not build, the Keystone XL pipeline.

US politicians supporting the Keystone XL pipeline point to energy independence as one of the main reasons why it needs to be built. Unfortunately, they never considered how important energy independence is going to be in our warming future. Sounds like the “Cut off your nose to spite your face” doctrine is in full effect . [CDCW]

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Is The Keystone XL Pipeline Decision A “Shit Or Get Off The Pot” Climate Crossroads For President Obama?

Keystone XL Pipeline decision and President ObamaWith tar sand oil, I truly believe that nature was trying to tell us to leave the stuff in the ground by making the franken-oil so costly to extract. Tar sand’s oil is the shit sandwich of liquid fuels and we’ll be sucking on it for 50 years if the 2000 mile Keystone XL pipeline is approved. President Obama volleyed the decision forward into his second term but he’ll soon have to make a tough choice that environmentalists believe will show what side of the climate change issue he’s on.

But wait – are members of his own party who oppose Keystone XL already giving him preemptive out?

Here’s a quote from Henry Waxman on President Obama’s upcoming decision (Guardian):

“This [Keystone XL] is only a small issue compared to the overall objective that the president and we want to achieve. What would you like me to do? Should I say to the president, ‘If you don’t agree with me on Keystone, I’m not going to work with you on solving the climate change issue’? That would be a little bit childish and counterproductive.”

Henry Waxman… really? Sure sounds like Rep. Henry “Future of our economy lies in clean energy, not increasing our reliance on the dirtiest source of gasoline imaginable” Waxman, who is political bros. with President Obama, is giving him a free pass on this issue and that worries me.

If I were to place a bet today, I would put my money on President Obama approving the Keystone XL pipeline. I think Rep. Waxman’s current take on the decision is very telling – it’s like he’s readying himself for the bad news from the President he normally supports. We’ll see how it plays out. [Guardian]

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2.5 Million Kilograms Of CO2 Emitted Just Getting To Conference On Climate Change In Davos Switzerland.

Kloster Ski Resort at Davos SwitzerlandOne more screwed up example of “do as we say, not as we do” environmentalism. From Grist:

“The 2,630 attendees cumulatively traveled over 550,000 kilometers by plane; in doing so, they generated 2.47 million kilograms of carbon dioxide. 2,470 metric tons. Add in train travel — 57,860 more kilograms — and the total footprint for those jetting in to Davos is 2,520 metric tons of carbon dioxide.”

The Grist article points out that maybe we could excuse the carbon emissions created by world leaders and CEOs to attend the WEF Conference because their intentions, reducing the use of fossil fuels, are for the greater good. But I’m not buying it and I wouldn’t be surprised if a few attendees wore their ski boots to a meeting so they could cut out the middle step, changing, and go right to the slopes.

In a past career, I had to pick tradeshows to attend and the weather and location were very important factors. That’s why I wouldn’t be surprised if the primary motivation of leaders attending this conference was to expense a ski vacation in Switzerland and not tackling climate change. It’s hard to not be cynical but these kind of forums / events play right into the hands of FOX News. They’re chomping at the bit to show how hypocritical it is to host a conference on climate change that furthers climate change. [Grist]

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United Nation’s Think.Eat.Save Campaign To Reduce Food Waste.

Mound of wasted food.The Think.Eat.Save campaign wants to make it easy for people to reduce the amount of food they throw out. With the help of the NRDC and WRAP UK, Think.Eat.Save compiled a list of tips we can follow immediately to reduce food waste. Here are some to help you get started:

  1. Shop Smart — plan meals, use shopping lists and avoid impulse buys. Don’t succumb to marketing tricks that lead you to buy more food than you need, particularly for perishable items.
  2. Understand Expiration Dates — in the US, “sell-by” and “use-by” dates are not federally regulated and do not indicate safety, except on certain baby foods. Rather, they are manufacturer suggestions for peak quality. Most foods can be safely consumed well after their use-by dates.
  3. Zero Down Your Fridge — eat food that is already in your fridge before buying more or making something new, which will save time and money.
  4. Say Freeze and Use Your Freezer — frozen foods remain safe indefinitely. Freeze fresh produce and leftovers if you won’t have the chance to eat them before they go bad.
  5. Request Smaller Portions — restaurants will often provide half-portions upon request at reduced prices.
  6. Love Leftovers – tonight’s leftover chicken roast can be part of tomorrow’s sandwich. Very few of us take leftovers home from restaurants. Don’t be embarrassed to do so!

Worldwide, over 1/3 of all food produced is not consumed. And the waste isn’t limited to tossed food; it’s also a massive waste of land, energy and water necessary to produce and deliver the 1.2+ billion tons of food we throw out. [Guardian]

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