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Home country: USA
Current location: Georgia
Member since: Tue Feb 10, 2004, 01:08 PM
Number of posts: 45,718

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Environmental Scientist

Journal Archives

Bobby Jindal administration blasts metric system, Lincoln Chafee

In a statement to Politico.com, Mike Reed, a spokesman for the governor’s office, referred to Democratic presidential candidate and metric system proponent Lincoln Chafee as a “Typical Democrat — wants to make America more European.”

“Governor Jindal would rather make the world more American,” he added, in his response to Politico’s request for comment.

Jindal is expected to announce his own run for president — seeking the Republican nomination — on June 24.


Cubits, Pyush, Cubits....gotta go oldstyle.

Friday TOON Roundup 3 - The Rest










Friday TOON Roundup 2 - Politics and Issues







Friday TOON Roundup 1 - The More The Nuttier

Global warming 'hiatus' never happened, NOAA scientists say

Source: LA Times

Was it all really just an illusion?

Ever since the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change acknowledged that the ominous rise in Earth’s mean surface temperature had begun to slow in 1998, scientists have struggled to explain this puzzling “pause” or “hiatus” in warming.

Some have argued that dust and ash blasted into the sky by Mt. Pinatubo and other volcanoes had reflected the sun’s heat back into space before it could be trapped by greenhouse gases. Others hypothesized that the sun had entered a rare period of calm, temporarily interrupting its habit of explosive tantrums.

Still more insisted this “missing” heat was absorbed by the Pacific Ocean, and other waters, and still lurks deep below the waves awaiting a stormy return to the surface.

Read more: http://www.latimes.com/science/sciencenow/la-sci-sn-no-global-warming-hiatus-noaa-20150603-story.html#page=1

EPA says no evidence that fracking has 'widespread' impact on drinking water

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency said in a Thursday report that it found no evidence fracking has a "widespread" impact on drinking water.

The EPA report concluded that there are above and below ground mechanisms by which fracking have the potential to impact drinking water resources, but that the number of identified cases were "small" compared to the number of fracking wells.

"We did not find evidence that these mechanisms [of potentially affecting water] have led to widespread, systemic impacts on drinking water resources in the United States," the report said.

In March, the federal government unveiled its first set of fracking safety mandates. Affecting only federal and Indian lands, the Bureau of Land Management rule includes provisions for ensuring groundwater protection though well integrity standards, increased transparency by requiring companies to publicly disclose chemicals they use, higher storage standards, and requiring companies submit more detailed information on preexisting wells.



More than 60 pct of China's underground water rated unfit for human contact

Source: Reuters/Trust

BEIJING, June 4 (Reuters) - Nearly two-thirds of China's underground water, and a third of its surface water, were rated as unsuitable for direct human contact in 2014, the environment ministry said on Thursday.

China is waging a "war on pollution" to reverse some of the environmental damage done by more than three decades of breakneck growth, but one of its biggest and costliest challenges is tackling contaminated water supplies.

China classifies its water supplies into six grades, and just 3.4 percent of the 968 surface water sites monitored by the Ministry of Environmental Protection met the highest standard of "Grade I" last year.

In an annual environmental bulletin, the ministry said just 63.1 percent of the monitored sites were ranked in "Grade III" or above, so rendering them fit for human use.

Read more: http://www.trust.org/item/20150604100703-6uifv/?

The pot effect on Denver's housing market

Home prices have shot up by double-digits, inventory has fallen dramatically and multiple offers with bidding wars have become common.

One factor driving the demand: pot. The budding industry has impacted home prices since the state legalized marijuana in 2012.

"There has been a huge bump in real estate prices due to the legalization of marijuana," according to James Paine, managing partner at West Realty Advisors. "It's massively pushed up raw land and industry prices."

In March, Denver experienced the second-largest jump in annual home prices at 10%, just behind San Francisco, according to the S&P/Case-Shiller Home Price Index.


Vandals poison puppy, scrawl hate message on church van

DALLAS — The congregation at New Life Full Gospel Community Church in Dallas say they are praying for whoever spray-painted a message on the church van.

The message: The word "No" followed by the N-word.

"It brings tears to my eyes," said church member Margaret Pipkins. "It just made me cry to see the words on the back of the van."

The vandals also poisoned the family's puppy, Kalo. The children made a headstone for it.

"The most hurtful thing is, they killed the puppy," Pipkins said. "An innocent puppy."



As the rich become super-rich, they pay lower taxes.

One of the cornerstones of American income tax policy is that taxes are progressive. People who make more money devote a higher share of their income to federal income taxes than people who make less money. That allows for a redistribution of wealth that lowers inequality.

That's how it's supposed to work, at least.

But new data out this spring from the IRS gives us a closer look of how the income tax works at the pinnacle of the income distribution -- not just the top 1 percent, or even the top 0.1 percent, but among the rarified realm of the 0.01 and even the 0.001 percent. Those latter two categories are new in the IRS report this year, reflecting a growing public interest in the ultra-wealthy and their effects on the economy.

The IRS found that as you go from being merely wealthy (the 1 percent) to super-duper wealthy (the 0.001 percent), your average federal income tax rate actually goes down. In other words, the progressivity of the federal income tax starts to fall apart at the upper reaches of the income distribution.


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