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A new study published in the journal Science Advances has concluded that babies born within two miles of sites of hydraulic fracturing (“fracking”) for natural gas in Pennsylvania’s Marcellus Shale basin are more likely to have low birth weights.
Researchers from Princeton, the University of Chicago, and UCLA analyzed a decade of Pennsylvania birth data from 2004 to 2013 — reviewing 1.1 million birth certificates — and concluded that those babies born to mothers living in close proximity to fracking sites are more likely to weigh under 5.5 pounds at birth. Specifically, the study concluded that babies born within a kilometer (just over half a mile) of fracking sites are 25 percent more at risk of low birth weights, which comes with other health effects.
“While we know pollution from hydraulic fracturing impacts our health, we do not yet know where that pollution is coming from — from the air or water, from chemicals onsite, or an increase in traffic,” said UCLA researcher Katherine Meckel in a press release.
By Dave Anderson, crossposted from Energy and Policy Institute
A new letter asking Congress to end the wind production tax credit has ties to the Institute for Energy Research, a group that has received funding from the fossil fuel and utility industry and is a close ally of the Trump administration.
The Energy and Policy Institute downloaded a PDF of the letter from WindAction.org, an anti-wind website run by the New Hampshire-based Lisa Linowes. A look at the “Document Properties” seemed to identify “Chris Warren” as the “Author” of the file:
As Liberals, we are working to build a Canada where we champion these progressive values…
Jump to RecipeThis Easy Ham and Cheese Crustless Quiche is a quick and delicious brunch recipe! It’s Cheese of the Month time again! Actually, this is the last one of the program…sniff. I really loved trying new-to-me delicious Canadian cheeses and creating new dishes each month, then sharing them with you! I’m going to miss it. But I hope you enjoyed all the delicious cheese inspired recipes I’ve shared over the last few months. If you missed any, make sure to check them out at the bottom of this post! This post is sponsored by Dairy Farmers of Canada. This recipe, all pictures and words are my own. I just really really love cheese. 😉 This month in my surprise cheese delivery, I received 2 cheeses! Baluchon from Fromagerie Baluchon in Quebec, and Boerenkaas from Natural Pastures on Vancouver Island, BC. Both cheeses are flavourful, creamy and SO delicious. I wanted to use both cheeses in one recipe, so I decided to add them both to a crustless quiche with ham and green onion. Crustless quiches, or frittatas, are really easy and delicious dishes. They’re perfect for Sunday or holiday brunch, but they are also my favourite what’s-for-dinner on a weeknight […]
As has been my tradition, in December I repost old favourites from years gone by. This year am looking back to 2014 and this piece on juice.
Juice is an incredibly frustrating beverage. Despite packing the same caloric and sugary punch of Coca-Cola, unlike sugared soda, juice’s undeserved health halo regularly leads to its provision, consumption (and often over consumption) in the name of nutrition – especially to and by our children.
And kids really shouldn’t be drinking the stuff, or at the very least, not in the name of health.
The Canadian Pediatric Society and the American Academy of Pediatrics both recommend that juice be capped for kids at half a cup daily. And make no mistake, the capping isn’t because juice is so damn good for the kids that we don’t want them to drink too much of it, but rather because every glass contains 5 teaspoons of sugar (or more) and calories which won’t be compensated for with decreased portions at their next meals.
The World Health Organization also considers juice to be nothing more than a sugar delivery vehicle and in their recent draft guidelines on sugar consumption specifically call out juice as a source of undesirable free sugars.
Yet there’s this piece that came across my Newswire just last week. It was a press release put out by Coca-Cola (makers of Minute Maid) and Breakfast Club of Canada and it featured Teresa Piruzza, MPP for Windsor West and Minister of Children and Youth Services launching the newest Ontario Breakfast Club, which judging from the press photo up above involves the indoctrination of children into believing that fruit juice is a healthy part of their breakfast and the provision of juice boxes (containing more juice than our experts’ daily recommended maximum), festooned with cartoon characters that in turn might further increase a child’s consumption and desire for same.
Can you imagine a similar scene with the Minister of Children and Youth Services grinning and handing out Vitamin C fortified soda, in cartoon covered cans, to children in the name of breakfast?
According to the press release,
“Breakfast Club of Canada supports healthy breakfast programs at 1,266 schools, supporting nearly 130,000 children and serves close to 21 million breakfasts every year and that Minute Maid® has partnered with Breakfast Club of Canada since 2003, donating Minute Maid® juices to support programs across Canada.“
Breakfast I’m all for, but marketing sugar water to children and washing it in BS “corporate social responsibility“, food insecurity, and health, is incredibly misguided, and incredibly sad.
(And if you’re looking for Juice is NOT a F@*#ing Fruit Part I click here)
A black bear sow with a fresh-caught coho salmon. In its latest assessment report, the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada has raised the status of coho salmon in B.C.’s Fraser River basin from endangered to threatened, but the indicator species still needs careful management. (Photo: Pam Mullins/Can Geo Photo Club)
News that scientists are recommending that the peregrine falcon be delisted as threatened in Canada somewhat overshadowed the status of 39 other species that the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada (COSEWIC) assessed during its recent semi-annual meeting in Ottawa.
Two of Prime Minister Theresa May’s special advisers met with a libertarian US think tank founded by climate science denial funder Charles Koch last winter, but Number 10 Downing Street will not say why.
The failure to disclose the details of the meetings with the Cato Institute raises questions about whether there is a loophole regarding disclosures under the Freedom of Information Act.
DeSmog UK can reveal that on February 16 special advisors Chris Brannigan and Jimmy McLoughlin attended a lunch hosted at the Cato Institute in Washington D.C. According to the think tank, trade issues were discussed.
Put your hand up if you’ve ever driven your car up to a gas pump only to notice after you’ve parked that your gas cap is on the other side. My brother, if your hand is up right now, you are not alone. See, some cars I’ve driven have the ol’ gas hole on the […]
Recently, a number of institutional investors, including Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec in Canada and Norway’s sovereign wealth fund, announced their intent to reduce their exposure in investments linked to fossil fuels.
The announcements show that investors withdraw their funds to either mitigate financial risks or for ethical reasons. But the question remains whether divestment and divestment announcements have a financial impact on the share price of fossil fuel companies.
Duo Lakes near the Snake River in the Peel watershed area in Yukon. The region has been the focus of a protracted legal battle over rights to develop the land. Earlier in December, the Supreme Court of Canada ruled in favour of several First Nations…
Great gear gifts for outdoor lovers!
Last-minute shoppers, rejoice! Can Geo editors have compiled this list of five affordable holiday gift ideas for just about every nature-lover on your list, from phone addicts to night owls and everything in between.
For the handyperson: Leatherman Signal multi-tool
These Prime Rib Sliders with Caramelized Onions and Horseradish Cream are the ultimate, decadent holiday appetizer! They’re perfect for lunch too! If you’re looking for the ultimate appetizer or lunch recipe to wow your guests, this is it. What’s more delicious than prime rib? Prime rib sliders with caramelized onions and horseradish cream sauce! Yes. This post has been sponsored by Kendall-Jackson wines! But as always the pictures, the recipe, my voice, all content, and opinions are mine alone. And I promise, these sliders are ah-mazing. Now let’s get back to the recipe, shall we… To make these sliders, first you have to roast a prime rib. I’m sharing a simple and delicious Prime Rib recipe, over on the Kendall-Jackson blog, so make sure to head on over there to get it! Once you have your prime rib, these sliders are simple to assemble. Serve them up with homemade balsamic caramelized onions and horseradish cream sauce. And if you make gravy with your prime rib pan drippings, make sure to serve that too. Is your mouth watering yet? Prime Rib Sliders with Caramelized Onions and Horseradish Cream slices of cooked prime rib buns Caramelized Onions: 4 large sweet onions halved and […]
The post Prime Rib Sliders with Caramelized Onions and Horseradish Cream appeared first on A Pretty Life In The Suburbs.
Rick McGinnis writes:We can complain about “500 channels and nothing on” all we want, but the fact is that TV has never been better, though I doubt if anyone would claim that TV news, either on the networks in the evening or all day on the cable channels, is one of the reasons. Network TV […]
David Cole writes:Considering that Siskind lives in New York, if the shooting never made the news, how did she hear about it? Unless, of course, she has a secret life in rural NorCal as a pot farmer. Also, white men account for only about half of the mass shootings in the U.S. (according to PolitiFact, […]
A leading lobbyist for a climate science denial campaign group has unfettered access to UK lawmakers by being registered as a “staff” member of an associated Lord, but does not declare his role in the official register of interest.
Football means one thing in North America, and another in the rest of the world. (And even just North America north of the Rio Bravo/Rio Grande. There’s also Australian Rules Football, I guess, but that’s … well … something completely different.) In the late fall of 2017, as it happens, Toronto, ON, Canada has won […]
When you wake up with your ol’ nose holes filled to the brim with thick, slow-moving night-phlegm, there’s only one solution. That’s right. Get up, stumble to the shower, and let’s get down to business. First, that hot steam needs to get the job started. Those tiny flying water molecules are like miniature chisels, floating […]
US president Donald Trump has signed a directive, instructing NASA to return Americans to the Moon, with the intent to one day send them to Mars.
Canada is hoping to tag along for the ride.
The US president signed the order during a ceremony in the Oval Office on December 11th, 2017, while surrounded by members of the recently re-established National Space Council (NSC), along with active NASA astronauts Christina Hammock Koch and Peggy Whitson, retired Apollo 11 astronaut Buzz Aldrin, and retired astronaut Jack Schmitt, who flew to the moon as part of the Apollo 17 mission.
As outlined in the December 11th, 2017 Space.com post, “President Trump Directs NASA to Return to the Moon, Then Aim for Mars,” the signed space policy directive makes official a recommendation approved by the NSC in October, 2017.
The recommendation called for NASA to return American astronauts to the moon and build the foundation needed to send Americans to Mars and beyond.
The unstated assumption is that, as outlined in the December 1st, 2017 post, “Deep Space Gateway ‘Key Part of Exploration Roadmap‘,” the architecture which will be used to return Americans to the Moon will begin with the proposed Deep Space Gateway (DSG), a crew-tended cislunar space station concept proposed for possible partnership between NASA, Roscosmos and other current International Space Station (ISS) partners for construction after the ISS is retired in the 2020s.
At least that’s what Canada is hoping.
That’s why, as outlined in the October 26th, 2017 post, “A Quick Overview of the Next Few Expected Federal Announcements Concerning the Canadian Space Industry,” our Canadian Space Agency (CSA) has climbed aboard the DSG bandwagon.
As for the funding, according to the December 11th, 2017 Reuters post, “Trump wants to send US astronauts back to moon, someday Mars,” NASA has indicated that initial funding for the new policy would be included in its budget request for fiscal year 2019.
Of course, American presidents have had a poor track record in recent years when it comes to defining space policy. As outlined in the December 11th, 2017 Time Magazine post, “Trump Wants to Send Astronauts Back to the Moon. Will That Really Happen?,” the current plans reverse President Barack Obama’s space policy, which called “for NASA to capture a small asteroid, move it to the vicinity of the moon and send astronauts out to explore it.”
According to the post:
Obama’s oddball plan, in turn, reversed President George W. Bush’s plan, which was a lot closer to Trump’s. And Bush’s at least altered President Bill Clinton’s, which was focused almost entirely on the space shuttle and the International Space Station, with little thought of the moon at all.
Before Clinton, the first President Bush briefly flirted with Mars, but only until analysts ball-parked the cost of the mission at half a trillion dollars.
By contrast, the Apollo program’s principal objective — to get American astronauts onto the moon and to do it before 1970 – was a shared vision of four presidents, from Eisenhower through Nixon.
But will the latest US president have any greater success than his recent predecessors? Maybe not.
As outlined in the November 30th, 2017 Space News op-ed, “A house divided, or in this case, a rocket,” the DSG was once a part of the cancelled US Constellation program (CxP), and keeps popping up every few years as a legitimate answer to the question of what to do with all the NASA scientists and engineers involved with the ISS after that program is shut down sometime in the 2020s.
According to the plan, you can transfer the ISS scientists and engineers to another space station, the DSG, which will use most of the same tools developed for the ISS. That’s why Canada is on-board with the program. We get to re-use all the Canadarm technology originally developed for the ISS.
In essence, the real story here might be the continuing concern NASA and space scientists have over their ongoing job security and the hoops politicians are willing to jump through in order to retain the support of those scientists and engineers.
This might not be a problem president’s or prime ministers can solve by returning to the Moon or going to Mars. But as long as everyone pretends, the jobs continue and the political base remains secure.
Henry Stewart is the pseudonym of a Toronto based aerospace writer.
Ottawa, ON – Justin Trudeau, Leader of the Liberal Party of Canada, will deliver remarks at a Laurier Club donor appreciation reception in Ottawa on December 12, 2017. The Liberal Party of Canada has committed to the strongest standards in federal politics for openness and transparency, and is challenging other parties to do the same. […]
Oakville, ON based Terrestrial Energy has announced that it’s integral molten salt reactor (IMSR) design had passed the first phase of a pre-licensing vendor design review by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC).
As outlined in the November 8th, 2017 Terrestrial Energy press release, “Terrestrial Energy IMSR First Commercial Advanced Reactor Assessed by Regulator,” IMSR technology appears to be gaining traction in other nations for both civilian and military purposes.
In January 2015, Terrestrial Energy announced a collaboration with Oak Ridge National Laboratory (ORNL) to commercialize its IMSR design and secured $10Mln CDN in funding. With Phase One of the CNSC design review proces complete, the company will enter Phase Two. Requiring further design detail, phase Two will take 18 months to 2 years to complete. Terrestrial Energy anticipates completing Phase Two in 2019, then obtaining a customer and beginning the reactor’s construction in the 2020s.
IMSRs promise nuclear power that is far cheaper and greener than traditional methods. IMSRs differ from traditional fission-based nuclear reactors in that they use fuel (in this case, denatured uranium) which has been dissolved in a molten liquid salt. Because the reactor’s fuel is in liquid form, it functions as both fuel and coolant, transporting heat away from the reactor as it circulates. Thus, an IMSR cannot go into meltdown because a loss of coolant (the traditional cause of meltdowns) would also mean a loss of the fuel needed to drive the reactor.
IMSRs would still produce radioactive waste, but at far lower volumes (kilograms versus tonnes) and far shorter time spans (200-300 years versus millennia) when compared to traditional reactors.
Molten salt reactors are not new technology. Terrestrial Energy’s design builds upon research done in the 1960’s in the US at ORNL. In addition, the Convair NB-36H “Crusader” aircraft, created under the US’ Aircraft Nuclear Propulsion program (ANP), flew a series of test flights from 1955-57 with a functioning salt-water reactor on board to ascertain whether a nuclear reactor could be used to power an aircraft.
From 1961 to 1965, the Soviet Union performed a series of test flights of a Tupolev-95LAL bomber, using conventional engines and fuel, but also carrying a Soviet-designed molten salt water reactor.
Both the US and USSR’s programs were cancelled due to the rise of ballistic missile technology.
As outlined in the December 6th, 2017 Next Big Future post, “Thorcon floating supertanker molten salt reactors starting with 2021 prototype,” a US-based startup called Thorcon Power is developing a molten salt reactor based off of ORNL designs for use on oil supertankers.
Currently under development in the US, Thorcon intends to build the reactor in a yet-to-be-determined Asian shipyard, then float it to Indonesia, where testing will begin in 2021. Thorcon’s team includes several former ORNL engineers.
The US and China are also eyeing molten salt water reactor tech for use in warships and drones in order to greatly increase their endurance and capabilities.
As outlined in a 2012 Sandia National Labs paper under the title, “Project Accomplishments Summary, Cooperative Research and Development Agreement (#1714) between Sandia National Labs and Northrop Grumman Systems Corporation,” from 2008-2011, Albuquerque, NM based Sandia National Labs and West Falls Church, VA based Northrop Grumman collaborated to design nuclear-powered unmanned aerial vehicles (UAVs) able to stay aloft for many months.
According to the December 5th, 2017 South China Morning Post, “China hopes cold war nuclear energy tech will power warships, drones,” China will spend $3.3Bln USD ($4.4Bln CDN) to develop two molten salt reactors in the Gobi Desert in northern China by 2020. Aside from civilian energy production, China considers molten salt ideal for powering UAVs as well as warships in its steadily expanding navy.
In addition, molten salt reactors could be fueled by thorium, a material China has in abundance. Using thorium as a fuel would enable higher power generation efficiency, enabling aircraft carriers and submarines with greater speed and range than uranium-powered ones.
As ever, nuclear technology remains a double-edged sword, enabling new human capabilities for both war and peace. Let us hope such capabilities are used wisely.
At its recent States & Nation Policy Summit, the American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC), a group that connects state legislators with corporations and creates templates for state legislation, voted on a model bill calling for the crack down and potential criminalization of those protesting U.S. oil and gas pipeline infrastructure.
Dubbed the Critical Infrastructure Protection Act, the model legislation states in its preamble that it draws inspiration from two bills passed in the Oklahoma Legislature in 2017. Those bills, House Bill 1123 and House Bill 2128, offered both criminal and civil penalties which would apply to protests happening at pipeline sites. Critics viewed these bills as an outgrowth of the heavy-handed law enforcement reaction to protests of the Dakota Access pipeline.
Donald Trump has threatened to withdraw the United States from the Paris Agreement – making America the only country on earth to opt out of the climate accord. Al Gore is captured in the new film An Inconvenient Sequel looking distressed at the election of Trump in 2016. Here, one of the film’s directors tells The Ecologist’s Brendan Montague how Gore made it clear that he fears Trump is a danger to our planet.
Gore features in An Inconvenient Sequel: Truth to Power – which is released on DVD on 11 December – and follows a decade after his Oscar winning blockbuster An Inconvenient Truth. The film shows Gore’s increasing despondency during 2016 as Trump successfully campaigns for the presidency.
The latest documentary is directed by Bonni Cohen and Jon Shenk, who spent almost two years filming and speaking with Gore – including behind the scenes during the Conference of the Parties negotiations held in Paris at the end of 2015.
Jim Goad writes:I believe that no one can be driven to kill themselves who wasn’t already severely messed-up and didn’t want, even just a little bit, to die. But the grim demise of August Ames is one in a long line of cases that suggest behind the Screaming Left’s endlessly vacant rhetoric about tolerance and […]
Make this Sausage and Egg Breakfast Casserole the night before, and pop it in the oven first thing in the morning. Perfect for the holidays! I’m so excited to have you visiting here today, because I think you’re going to find this post really helpful! I’ve joined together with 13 Canadian bloggers to bring you some Christmas morning breakfast ideas! Isn’t that great?! I find Christmas morning meal planning challenging because there’s so much going on that day, and getting a big meal together is hard work. So much of Christmas meal planning goes into the dinners, and often breakfast gets overlooked. It can also be hard to find ideas that are easy to prepare. But fret not, you’re in the right place today…there are loads of recipe ideas for you here! Let’s get started! I’m sharing a simple and delicious recipe for an Overnight Sausage and Egg Breakfast Casserole. Besides being super delicious, the best thing about this brunch recipe is that you can prepare it the night before you plan to serve it. So all you have to do in the morning is pop it in the oven, then let it bake away while you open your presents. […]
|Source: USAG-Humphreys’ Flickr|
So this post, originally published at US News and World Report a few years ago, will be the last of this recent sled of in defence and support of home cooking.
Once upon a time, not so long ago, people ate out for a reason. Maybe it was in celebration of an anniversary, a birthday or a promotion. Maybe it was out of necessity to seal the deal with an important prospective client. Or maybe it was the understandable consequence of travel. But one thing’s for sure — we didn’t used to eat out simply because we could. Eating out was special.
Growing up in the 1970s, meals out were exceedingly rare for my family. Aside from our every-other-year family vacations, I’d bet we only ate out once every few months or so — and almost always to mark an occasion. I don’t think we were atypical in how we spent money on food back then; as a society, the 1970s saw roughly 30 percent of our food dollars spent on food prepared outside of the home. Today North American society is over 50 percent.
Working in my office, I’d venture my average patient is eating out three to four times a week. And yet, it’s not laziness that drives their frequent meals out. Regular meals out are simply North America’s new normal. And it’s a new normal that I think is a huge player in our collectively poor health.
While there is no one singular cause for our societal struggle with diet and weight-related conditions, one of the primary drivers is our unbelievably frequent use of restaurants, cafeterias and take-out food. Sometimes we justify these choices because there’s a “low-fat“, or “low-carb“, option or something that sounds safe and healthful, and sometimes we convince ourselves it’s due to a lack of time — that we honestly don’t have the five or so minutes it would take each morning to brown-bag a lunch.
But I’d bet that most of the time we don’t even think about whether we should or shouldn’t be eating out. And we don’t think about it, because the regular use of restaurants, or of supermarket take-out, or of nuking a box or assembling a jar of this with a box of that and calling it cooking, is just what we all do. And generally people don’t question conventions that simply reflect regular behaviour.
I’d go further and say that families are often looked at with scorn when the vast majority of their meals are transformed from minimally processed and fresh whole ingredients. The “normal” of convenience has people seeing the cooking family as having an “obsession” with health or nutrition beyond what “normal” people consider to be healthy.
At the end of each day, we’re all consumers of the exact same amount of time. While no doubt, there are those who have far tougher lives than others, and some work far longer hours, there was a time when each and every last family out there, regardless of how rough their circumstances, was obligated to find the time to prioritize cooking as part of day-to-day requirements, because there simply was no alternative. And while there are definitely people whose life circumstances truly make regular cooking an impossible and unreasonable goal, there are definitely others who have been convinced, or have convinced themselves, that it’s not doable.
Now I’m not trying to romanticize the foods we all once cooked. I’m certain many a meal from those days would have turned many a dietitian white with horror. But I’d argue that the simple act of cooking — a health-preserving life skill — is a skill that risks extinction. In some families, regular home cooking is a phenomenon not seen for three generations.
My guess is that even the worst home-cooked-from-fresh-whole-ingredients meals from back then were likely to be lower in calories, sodium, and sugar than many healthy-sounding restaurant choices today. More importantly, those meals were far more likely to involve shared meal preparation and cleanup along with their consumption as a family ritual, around a table free from today’s drone of kitchen-based TV sets and the pings and beeps of emails, tweets and Facebook updates from our electronic leashes.
So what have we prioritized in cooking’s place? Kids’ organized sports? Longer work hours? Our favourite TV shows? Text messaging? Social media?
Boiling it down to its essence, ultimately what we’ve prioritized as more important than cooking is convenience. Moreover, we go out of our way to convince ourselves (as does the food industry) that convenience can still confer health, that those boxes that claim they contain healthy nutrients and those menu items that include vegetables are in fact good for us. But looking around us — and given the urgency of the problem and the never-ending call to arms to fix it — it sure doesn’t seem as though convenience is doing a very good job.
The inconvenient truth of health is that healthy living does require effort. There are no shortcuts.
And if you’re looking for the one thing you can do that would most dramatically improve your or your family’s health, my money would be on you prioritizing the regular, uninterrupted use of your kitchen. Prioritize it at the expense of your electronic tethers and, yes, even at the expense of your children’s after-school sports, as teaching your children the life skill of cooking trumps their need to learn how to play soccer – and if you have time in your life for that, you definitely have time in your life for this.
And please don’t misread this as if I’m suggesting that change need be absolute or all at once. Maybe commit to cooking one additional meal a week, and it certainly need not be complex. The goal is to cultivate love affairs with our kitchens, but that doesn’t mean you’ll be madly in love from day one, and while I don’t think we should stop taking advantage of the miraculous times that we live in and should still enjoy and savour some wonderful meals out, we should be aiming at making eating out special again — a rare and exciting treat. In other words, aim to eat out for occasions, and not just because it’s Tuesday.
I’m the world’s worst Scrabble player. Every time it’s my turn I see other players lose interest as they get ready for a long wait. I feel bad, so I stare intensely at my pieces trying desperately to conjure up a word longer than three letters or else suffer their complaints that I’m “really clogging […]
The post #990 Picking up a q and u at the same time when playing Scrabble appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.
On December 4, the Department of Transportation (DOT) announced it would repeal a critical safety regulation for modern braking systems on the same oil trains which have derailed, spilled oil, caught fire, exploded, and even killed dozens in multiple high profile accidents in recent years.
The regulation, released by the DOT‘s Pipeline and Hazardous Materials Safety Administration in mid 2015, required that oil trains have modern electronically controlled pneumatic (ECP) braking systems by 2021. However, in the latest iteration of its review process for this rule, the DOT is now doing an about-face.
Found in dusty kitchen cupboards and dishwasher top-shelves across this wide, great land, really, really old Tupperware is as handy today as it was twenty, thirty, forty years ago. That famous Tupperware “burping seal” still holds strong, and you can bet your boombox that banana bread will stay moist, those chopped celery sticks crisp, that […]
While U.S. power plants have considered petroleum coke or “petcoke” to be too dirty to burn, India, on the other hand, has been importing this coal by-product of tar sands refining for years. However, it may be seeing its last days in the country which has served as its biggest importer.
In the aftermath of an Associated Press investigation published on December 1, India’s Petroleum and Natural Gas Minister Dharmendra Pradhan has said the country is formulating plans to phase out petcoke imports. The AP investigation, filed from New Delhi, revealed that citizens who live near petcoke refining facilities have come down with a range of air pollution-related illnesses in recent months and years.
The AP also points out that among the largest exporters of U.S. petcoke are Koch Industries subsidiary Koch Carbon and Oxbow Carbon, the latter of which is owned by the twin brother of David Koch, Bill Koch. The advocacy group Oil Change International referred to petcoke as “the coal hiding in the tar sands” in a 2013 report documenting the carbon footprint of petcoke production and combustion.
Drs. Ionnidis and Trepanowksi, in JAMA, with their thoughts on conflicts of interest in nutrition science.
Tamar Haspel, in The Washington Post, with a fascinating explainer on why it’s not farm subsidies we should blame when considering the low cost of junk food.
Angela Chen, in The Verge, with her own personal account of the genetic astrology that is the current state of direct to consumer genomics.
Weddings can go one of two ways. Either you’re tight like twins with the bride or groom — a sibling maybe, college roommate, or grandmother. You’re on The Inside, recommending photographers, hosting showers, renting tuxes, giving toasts. For you, the wedding is a great day, a proud moment, a chance to recognize and celebrate someone […]
The post #992 Being the first table to get called up to the dinner buffet at a wedding appeared first on 1000 Awesome Things.
ONE OF THE GREAT UNPUBLISHED CARTOONISTSDon Hawkes stood out from the knots of young strangers gathered for the first time 62 years ago outside a barracks structure called the Graphic Arts Building in a battered complex titled the Ryerson Institute of …
Steve Sailer writes:“Lost Edisons.” Chetty, who sometimes seems not all that familiar with his adoptive country, appears to have gotten the European scientific theorist Albert Einstein (who, although he once worked in a patent office, was not much of an inventor) confused with the American inventor Thomas Alva Edison (whose name is on 1,093 U.S. […]
Back in October 2017, this blog predicted that Prime Minister Justin Trudeau would need to make some sort of official announcement before the next Federal budget in March 2018 on the status of the enhanced satellite communication project (ESCP), a long running, expensive, but mostly unfunded proposal to build a two node constellation of modified Molniya orbiting Department of National Defence (DND) satellites “to fill the requirement of the new Canadian defense policy for all-Arctic (communications) coverage.”
|“Hey Rocky! Watch me pull a rabbit out of my hat!” As outlined in the May 26th, 2016 DND website, “Enhanced Satellite Communication Project,” the Liberal government initially postulated final delivery of the two ESCP satellites in 2024 which even then, was kinda amusing. That date has since been superseded by a revised “No later than 2029” final delivery date. Why were the dates so laughable? The ESCP was a follow-on the cancelled Polar Communications and Weather (PCW) constellation which, as outlined in the July 17th, 2016 post, “The Polar Communications & Weather Satellite (PCW) Mission is Dead; To Revive it, our Military Wants More Money,” had been kicking around for a decade and had grown from a useful $600Mln CDN proposal into a far larger $4.5Bln CDN potential boondoggle before being cancelled. The previous PCW advocates were initially promised a “final delivery” in 2016. As Rocky the Flying Squirrel would say, “Hokey Smokes!” Graphic c/o Gov’t of Canada.|
As outlined in the December 4th, 2017 BuyandSell.ca letter of interest LOI/ request for information (RFI) under the title “Enhanced SATCOM Project – Polar (W6369-180123/A),” any real work on the program, now known as ESPC-Polar (or ESPC-P for short) has been pushed out well past the next election.
This places any contract award well past the 2019 estimated date for the next Federal election and also past the 2020 – 2022 date for the roll-out of many of the FCC proposed civilian LEO com-sat constellations, such as the one proposed by Telesat.
|ESPC proposed procurement schedule according to December 4th, 2017 Buyand Sell procurement documentation on the ESCP-P program. Graphic c/o Gov’t of Canada.|
To lesson the confusion, the DND will engage “in a consultative process” as its first step toward actually buying something. According to the LOI/RFI:
In consideration of industry’s insights and other operational imperatives, a Request for Information (RFI) is being used to initiate engagement with industry to help further define the requirements for a more comprehensive solution as well as to understand current market capacity and interest in preparation of a subsequent RFP (Request for Proposal).
That first phase is scheduled to take at least another year. Key objectives include:
|It should be noted that even Canadian Defence Minister Harjit Sajjan (shown here, walking past an honour guard at US Joint Base Andrews in Maryland, where he attended a meeting of defense ministers on July 2nd, 2017) concedes that the Canadian military is underfunded. As outlined in the October 26th, 2017 Global News post, “Liberal government’s defence plan threatened by shortage of procurement staff,” Senior officials at the Defence Department believe that “they will be challenged to make good on the Trudeau government’s promise to buy billions of dollars in new military equipment in the coming years.” Photo c/o Saul Loeb/ AFP/Getty.|
Whatever the real reason for the delay, current estimates to complete the ESCP-P program start far north of the estimated $1.5Bln CDN the Federal government is willing to concede.
They’ll be forced to pretend that everything remains on-track for an eventual purchase, even as they (and their supply chains) slowly twist in the wind.
|Another reminder that cost might indeed be a constraint on the ESCP-P program (then called simply ESCP). As outlined in the March 14th, 2017 Ottawa Citizen post, “Canada talking to U.S., Norway and Denmark about footing bill for new Arctic military satellite,” the contract was then expected to be “awarded in 2020 for the Enhanced Satellite Communication Project. The spacecraft would be launched around 2024.” Graphic c/o Ottawa Citizen.|
Perhaps the government will hire more procurement officers to deal with the backlog and/or continue to deal with Arctic military communication requirements the same way it always has, with a little help from the Americans.
It would not be practical to flood deserts to help alleviate rising sea levels.
Halszkaraptor had an unusual array of features, but was also rare in that it was a water living dinosaur.
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