The Watering Hole, Tuesday November 10, 2015 – Environmental News and Food Politics

“Ocean acidification may well be helping invasive species of algae, jellyfish, crabs and shellfish to move to new areas of the planet with damaging consequences, according to the findings of a new report.

Slimy, jelly-like creatures are far more tolerant of rising carbon dioxide levels than those with hard parts like corals, since exposed shells and skeletons simply dissolve away as CO2 levels rise.”

Read the rest here: The Jellyfish are coming. Actually, they seem to be already here.

The Watering Hole, Tuesday October 12, 2015 – Environmental News and Food Politics

Chernobyl and Other Places Where Animals Thrive Without People

I once fished a creek back in PA that was contaminated with PCB’s. They collected in the fat tissue of trout, an  if consumed would be potentially harmful, in a cancer causing kind of way. The solution by the Fish Commission was to declare the fishing catch and release only. The fish thought it was great. None would leave the stream on a stringer.

Another place I fished in the Pocono Mountains was next to a Superfund Site. Wow, talk about a place where you would find few other people. The fishing was pretty good there. Supposedly all the contamination from zinc smelters was in the vegetation and soil. The Fish Commission let you keep the fish there, as if there was no mixing of soil, vegetation, and water. I put the fish I caught back anyway.

Good wildlife viewing...

The Watering Hole, Tuesday September 29, 2015 – Environmental News and Food Politics

Alarming Report on the Health of Our Oceans

“According to the World Wildlife Fund‘s (WWF) recently released Living Blue Planet Report, marine populations have declined by an astonishing 49 percent between 1970 and 2012, with with some fish species, including tuna, declining by almost 75 percent.”

I think our first Earth Day was in 1970. Our awareness of the earth’s problems has increased dramatically, but our actions to correct them are but a minor blip on the radar.

Pretty alarming numbers. What will the oceans look like in another 40 years?

The Watering Hole, Monday, September 28th, 2015: It’s Autumn, Isn’t It?

It’s week 3 of football season, baseball only has another week in the “regular” season, both of which are normal clues that we’re into fall. Normally, by the end of August, we have at least some trees starting to change their leaves as the first harbingers of the spectacular foliage show to come, but…

With a very few exceptions (certain vines, etc.), our tree-covered hillsides are as green as ever.
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According to the official “I Love NY” foliage report,

“Hudson Valley foliage change will remain minimal this weekend, according to foliage spotters. Look for up to 25 percent change in Rockland County, where green still predominates, but some purple, orange and red leaves are beginning to emerge. Dutchess County spotters in Poughkeepsie expect 15 percent color change, with more bright yellow leaves coming into play. Spotters in Columbia, Westchester and Orange counties expect just about 10 percent color change this weekend.”

For some reason, Putnam County, where Wayne and I grew up, is never mentioned, even though there’s plenty of scenic and historic areas in Putnam. And Dutchess County, where we live now, has the longest pedestrian bridge in the world, the Walkway Over the Hudson.

So, where’s our fall foliage? I think I’ll blame Pat Robertson and the religious right for screwing with our seasons. Damned end-timers!

This is our daily Open Thread–whom do you want to blame for something?

The Watering Hole; Thursday september 3 2015; The Science Behind ACD

I’ll be brief today. Anthropogenic Climate Disruption (ACD) is real, it’s happening, and its consequences are already proving to be formidable at least, potentially terminal. The link below is to one of the best ACD analyses I’ve run across to date. It’s written in familiar lay terms and language, but contains numerous links to scientific papers and data that apply to various aspects of ACD, both cause and effect, both local and global.

The essay is a bit lengthy in itself, and can be made far more lengthy via the embedded scientific and media links. It’s well worth a read, however, also maybe worth sending to uninformed stoneheads like Inhofe, Trump, Cruz — to deniers everywhere. Maybe they’re still able to learn — although I’d have to see it to believe it.

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Dahr Jamail | The World on Fire: Record-Breaking Wildfires, Greenland Melting and Earth’s Hottest Month Ever

A massive wall of wildfire smoke, blowing in from record-breaking fires in eastern Washington State, covers Puget Sound and Seattle. (Photo: Dahr Jamail)

A massive wall of wildfire smoke, blowing in from record-breaking fires in eastern Washington State, covers Puget Sound and Seattle. (Photo: Dahr Jamail)

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OPEN THREAD

The Watering Hole, Tuesday August 18, 2015 – Environmental News and Food Politics

Study: Temperature influences bird diversity loss in Mexico

“A wide-ranging study of gains and losses of populations of bird species across Mexico in the 20th century shows shifts in temperature due to global climate change are the primary environmental influence on the distributions of bird species.”

Read on…