It might be March, but I think that the ground dwelling rodent we trust to predict near term weather patterns is a liar. We are going to be shivering, mostly metaphorically, through single digits temps during the day that plunge to below zero degrees Fahrenheit overnight.
Add to this the cycle of freezing rain, ice, and snow that has blanketed eastern Iowa and you get a recipe for surly people. Seriously, we are just done with winter in this part of the country.
On to the links…
The David Bernhardt Scandal Tracker—You would think it would easy to follow Ryan Zinke and not appear to be a corrupt swamp creature. Whoops. This is the Trump Administration so one corrupt politician will always be followed by another corrupt politician. It’s the only people left who have the stomach to serve under the man.
Synthetic Fibers Found at Bottom of Mariana Trench—Our plastic pollution has reached the most remote places on Earth.
The Future is Rural: The Unexpected Consequence of Energy Descent—As energy becomes less dense and more diffuse—think distributed solar as opposed to giant coal plants—there will be a difficulty in maintaining our current urban paradigm. The question is what level of urbanism can be supported.
You Can’t Take on Climate Change without Tackling Sprawl—Our built infrastructure encourages profligate energy use.
Twelve Empty Supertankers Reveal Truths About Today’s Oil Market—The global oil and refined petroleum products markets are extraordinarily complex. However, a dozen empty supertankers roaming the oceans is a sign that something is broken.
Germany Ditches Fossil Fuels and Looks to Renewable Energy—2038 seems like a long way off, but I remember when Y2K seemed like the future. What happens when the curve of retirements steepens as coal becomes even more uneconomic? I can imagine a future where this deadline becomes 2035 or sooner.
New Study Suggests Buying These EVs Used Saves A Ton Of Money—The market is pushing these used electric vehicles to a fairly major level of depreciation over a short period of time meaning that a buyer can get a relatively lightly used EV for a fairly low price. It’s what happened with my Nissan Leaf.
Heat your House with a Water Brake Windmill—I had never even heard of this technology. Now I imagine that there is a case to be made for small scale water brake wind turbines providing thermal energy in colder climes.
‘Grandmother Effect’ Helps Explain Human Longevity—It takes a village, so to speak.
A Whale’s Afterlife—It amazes me how little we know about so many things. When I was a kid there was a legend about the “elephants’ graveyard” somewhere in Africa. The idea of that was so enticing to a young mind.
Four Troubling Ways Fast Food has Changed in 30 Years—Basically, there is a lot more fast food available and we eat a lot more fast food. The consequences for our waistlines and planet are fairly predictable.