Author Topic: Environmental concerns  (Read 5237 times)

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Offline Devlyn

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Environmental concerns
« on: December 04, 2014, 09:00:50 pm »
Conservation, pollution, resources, etc. Discuss.
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Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #1 on: December 04, 2014, 09:14:38 pm »
Since you opened this up due to my response about fracking, I should throw something in here about that. Most people aren't aware about the dangers of it, or how extensive it has become, since the gas companies are covering everything up and paying people off. A weird, but wonderful, guy named Josh Fox made a couple documentaries called "Gasland" to help expose this. The first video is available for free on Youtube. Watch it if you have time. I think you'll have to go through HBO for the second one, but you get enough of the picture from the first video anyway.





Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #2 on: December 04, 2014, 11:41:44 pm »
if we made lots of solar panels they'd actually get cheap enough to put everywhere . imagine all the free power we could get  !
We actually do have enough access to solar and wind to power the world several times over if we only used it. The people currently making money from today's energy sources will lose it all, though.




Offline HughE

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #3 on: December 05, 2014, 09:12:59 am »
Since you opened this up due to my response about fracking, I should throw something in here about that. Most people aren't aware about the dangers of it, or how extensive it has become, since the gas companies are covering everything up and paying people off. A weird, but wonderful, guy named Josh Fox made a couple documentaries called "Gasland" to help expose this.

I should point out that at least one of those antifracking movies was funded by the UAE. No doubt the Arab oil nations would be delighted if the US shut down its oil and gas production, but do you really think it's in the best interests of your country and its people to do that?

Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #4 on: December 05, 2014, 09:37:33 am »
I should point out that at least one of those antifracking movies was funded by the UAE. No doubt the Arab oil nations would be delighted if the US shut down its oil and gas production, but do you really think it's in the best interests of your country and its people to do that?
I haven't seen anything like that about the gasland videos. I do know that the pro-fracking response videos are heavily funded by the gas companies, though. Interests aside, this documentary shows real people with their unfiltered issues. These people who are interviewed aren't gaining anything from corporate angles. They actually have a lot to lose for speaking up at all. I'll take the side of people in need over corrupt corporations any day. I understand why gas is important, but it doesn't matter if we sacrifice our country, its people, and our ecosystems just to get that. I don't want to live in a cancerous wasteland. There are energy solutions we can take that are much safer and don't benefit either our gas corporations or those from other countries.




Offline Devlyn

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #5 on: December 05, 2014, 09:45:13 am »
I like the idea of solar, but not the idea of EXXON Solar selling us photovoltaic cells that require heavy industry and toxic chemicals to manufacture. That's just more of the same.
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Offline Tessa James

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #6 on: December 05, 2014, 05:30:15 pm »
Energy conservation is the best bet for reducing our dependence on the fossil fuels that have the biggest role in creating greenhouse gases like carbon dioxide.  Carbon dioxide levels are not the only problem of course.  Americans are great people but we use more energy per capita than anyone else and it is unnecessary.  Life style choices, more efficient appliances, and thoughtful community planning can contribute to the solutions.  We designed and built our small passive solar home and later added photovoltaic cells to the roof.  We get more than half our energy needs from the sun and we live on the rainy Oregon coast.  We drive a hybrid car, prefer bicycle and foot traffic, recycle everything and prefer to buy locally produced food and products.  We are not any better than anyone else and we are grateful we have the means to do what we can.  IMO it starts with being informed and then caring enough to take action.

Fracking is a process of pumping toxic industrial material into the ground to rupture the planet's skin and extract more oil and gas.  Eevee is right on about this and the Gasland videos are just one source of info about it.  What we want in a clean and sustainable world is eminently reasonable for our children and the other living beings we share this place with.

As this is a transgender support site I am reminded of the "Radical Queer and/or Trans Folks for Environmental Justice" group in Portland Oregon.  Its good to share the effort with friends :D

And thanks for starting this thread Devlyn
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Offline jojoglowe

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #7 on: December 07, 2014, 07:43:44 am »
Besides the proprietary chemicals that end up getting illegally dumped in protected watersheds/streams
Besides the destabilizing of the land

It turns neighbors against each other, like a fascist regime. If you don't sell out, your neighbor will. If you do sell out, your neighbors will hate you.

And my gas bill is still expensive!
^I read it's because even though production is up... there isn't adequate infrastructure to deliver the gas fast enough during peak demand, so we still have supply/demand pressures that raise prices in the winter.

I grew up a river rat. Darby Creek is one of the most pristine waterways. These days I wouldn't recommend kids swim in it.

Anyone heard of the Halliburton Loophole?

Energy Policy Act of 2005
This bill exempted fluids used in the natural gas extraction process of hydraulic fracturing (fracking) from protections under the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, Safe Drinking Water Act, and CERCLA.[21] It created a loophole that exempts companies drilling for natural gas from disclosing the chemicals involved in fracking operations that would normally be required under federal clean water laws — see exemptions for hydraulic fracturing under United States federal law. The loophole is commonly known as the "Halliburton loophole" since former Halliburton CEO Dick Cheney was reportedly instrumental in its passage.[22] The proposed Fracturing Responsibility and Awareness of Chemicals Act would repeal these exemptions.
http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Energy_Policy_Act_of_2005

My solar friends have said that 2015 is the year where solar is projected to cost the same as coal. Politics aside, once renewable energy is as affordable or cheaper than hydrocarbons, the world will make the switch... can't wait!

Last note, no matter what source of energy you think is best for USA... think about the whole world using hydrocarbon like we do. The developing world wants to be just like us. So let's clean up our act so that they can.
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Offline JoanneB

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #8 on: December 07, 2014, 08:55:00 am »
I'll put my 30+ years as a power conversion electrical engineer wig on (or is it take it off?) and my inner and frugal sailboat owner cap on.

Solar Cells - Well, for starters the sun doesn't always shine. When it does depending where you are the sun exposure is pretty poor. To guarantee any semblance of a reliable electrical supply you need batteries. Batteries probably don't need it to be said but it is a very dirty industry. Higher tech batteries are even more worse then the old standard Lead wet cells. The semiconductor industry overall is probably even dirtier then battery manufacturing. Ask Intel how that California manufacturing profitability is going. As soon as they can take the risk, it goes off-shore. Solar cells use slightly different processes but still pretty dirty. Solar cells, like batteries have a definite life span. A few years ago you could expect the solar cell conversion efficiency to drop fairly dramatically after even just 1 year in intense sunlight. Five years is a good average for big $$ name brand cells. Maybe ten these days but it'll cost you. Batteries also wear out with constant use. Again 5-10 years tops while in service. Telco's backup batteries can last 30 or so years but they are almost always in standby, very expensive, and well maintained. We know how to reprocess lead, acid, the plastic. Even the glass matting can be used for making asphalt. Hi-tech lithium based cells.... Not so easy and very dangerous.

Gaslands, the movie.... One of the greatest, funniest propaganda pieces I've seen. People out west have been lighting up their water wells for over 150 years. The EPA has time and time again in court have been knocked down for their junk science and rigging the experiments. To the best of my knowledge they haven't won a case yet in court. When both sides distort the message, it is difficult to see the truth

I worry more about the likes of Monsanto and ADM. Most food is garbage these days. Everything is hybridized or manipulated to hell. Fast growing and hardy for shipping is what counts. There have been very few nutritional studies done one grains, veggies, and fruits since the late 20's. The real nutritional value from todays industrialized varieties pale in comparison. Fruits and veggies are picked well before they are ripe. Ripe meaning the matured and achieved their full nutritional value by sucking up sunlight and minerals from the Earth.  Just hours before delivery the truck driver sets loose a couple of gas bombs inside the trailer to start the chemical ripening (coloring) process. (Ever wonder how 'Oranges' got that name if they are like almost always yellow?) I think half the reason people are so obese these days is the primeval longing to eat something that actually has flavor beyond salt and HFCS, a major poison in our food chain. No... it is not sugar. It is corn syrup mixed with chemicals to make it sort of look like a sugar molecule.
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Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #9 on: December 07, 2014, 04:10:51 pm »
Gaslands, the movie.... One of the greatest, funniest propaganda pieces I've seen. People out west have been lighting up their water wells for over 150 years. The EPA has time and time again in court have been knocked down for their junk science and rigging the experiments. To the best of my knowledge they haven't won a case yet in court. When both sides distort the message, it is difficult to see the truth

Just because it is biased, doesn't mean it is propaganda. It still speaks the truth, while propaganda is all lies. Yes, some wells have had methane enough to light them up before. That's not what the documentary is talking about, though. These are wells that have never had methane leaks in them before, and only started once the fracking started up nearby (or on) their properties. The methane is only a visible indicator, though. The real problem going on is the toxic chemicals that are less visible within the same water. Yet again, these same wells and local water sources only became contaminated with the toxins after fracking started nearby. The same chemicals are specifically used in hydraulic fracking and are not found in nature. Explain that one away for us. Then tell us why in some areas, even the air itself is too toxic too breathe after (and only after) the appearance of hydraulic fracking. How about the constant earthquakes where they used to be a rarity? It's no wonder that people involved in the fracking of other areas are so against moving fracking near their own homes once the idea is discussed.




Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #10 on: December 07, 2014, 05:23:42 pm »

What toxic industrial chemicals are you talking about ?
They use hundreds of chemicals, and don't reveal all of them to the public. Here's a few of them:

Benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, xylene, naphthalene, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, methanol, formaldehyde, ethylene glycol, glycol ethers, hydrochloric acid, sodium hydroxide, monoethanolamine.

All of these have also shown up in local water supplies after fracking has started.

YUM! Just what I want in my drinking water!




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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #11 on: December 07, 2014, 06:05:57 pm »
Estrogen in waste-water discharge will need to be addressed at some point.

Offline HughE

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #12 on: December 07, 2014, 07:18:02 pm »
Estrogen in waste-water discharge will need to be addressed at some point.
There's much less artificial estrogen being discharged into the waterways now than there was when DES was being used as a growth promoter in cattle, and being given in whopping doses to pregnant women as a miscarriage treatment!

Offline HughE

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #13 on: December 07, 2014, 07:55:55 pm »
They use hundreds of chemicals, and don't reveal all of them to the public. Here's a few of them:

Benzene, ethylbenzene, toluene, xylene, naphthalene, polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons, methanol, formaldehyde, ethylene glycol, glycol ethers, hydrochloric acid, sodium hydroxide, monoethanolamine.

All of these have also shown up in local water supplies after fracking has started.

YUM! Just what I want in my drinking water!
The first few are components of gas condensate rather than chemicals used in fracking, so you'll get them from any oil or gas drilling operation whether it uses fracking or not (and from petrol and diesel spills or leaks). The remainder are all chemicals that are heavily used in industry, and some are used in soaps and detergents too, so there's plenty discharged into wastewater whether there's fracking operations nearby or not.

Any kind of mining operation is going to have some effect on the environment, and from what I've read about it, the effects of gas extraction - fracked or not - are relatively minor. The people opposed to it either have a vested interest in seeing it stopped (e.g. arab oil interests), or are global warming extremists who are opposed to any use of fossil fuels.

Quote
My solar friends have said that 2015 is the year where solar is projected to cost the same as coal. Politics aside, once renewable energy is as affordable or cheaper than hydrocarbons, the world will make the switch... can't wait!
It takes a great deal of energy to produce semiconductor grade silicon, and a lot of highly toxic chemicals are used during the refinement process and in turning it into solar cells. That limits how far the cost of solar is going to come down. Aside from that, there's the fact that solar only works in direct sunlight and when the panels are properly oriented towards the sun. Cloud cover, or the sun being at the wrong angle to the panels drastically reduces the output. They don't work when it's dark either!

The basic problem with all renewables (apart from hydro), is that the amount of energy expended in building and maintaining the equipment, upgrading the electricity grid to cope with the unstable renewables output, and the need to keep fossil fuel power stations running fully powered as a backup, means that you end up in a situation where it's questionable whether you ever get enough electricity generated by windmills or solar panels over their lifetime to cover all the electricity consumed in building and operating them. That's why wind and solar are only viable with enormous subsidies, and why in places like Germany where they've put up wind turbines all over the place, they've had to also build lots of new coal power stations to do the grunt work of actually generating the electricity.

Offline Eevee

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #14 on: December 07, 2014, 08:21:33 pm »
The first few are components of gas condensate rather than chemicals used in fracking, so you'll get them from any oil or gas drilling operation whether it uses fracking or not (and from petrol and diesel spills or leaks). The remainder are all chemicals that are heavily used in industry, and some are used in soaps and detergents too, so there's plenty discharged into wastewater whether there's fracking operations nearby or not.

Any kind of mining operation is going to have some effect on the environment, and from what I've read about it, the effects of gas extraction - fracked or not - are relatively minor. The people opposed to it either have a vested interest in seeing it stopped (e.g. arab oil interests), or are global warming extremists who are opposed to any use of fossil fuels.

Benzene causes cancer and bone marrow failure. Toluene in even low or moderate exposure causes tiredness, confusion, weakness, drunken-type actions, memory loss, nausea, loss of appetite, and hearing and color vision loss. Naphthalene destroys red blood cells. PAHs cause birth defects, low IQ, and childhood asthma. Methanol causes blindness and sometimes death.

I could go on. The fact is that none of this existed in these water supplies before fracking came in. Now it all exists in dangerous quantities that is making these listed symptoms happen. Other mining operations aren't getting these complaints with water supplies like fracking is. Some of these chemicals may also be present in products, but they aren't normally in drinking water. People don't normally ingest them and they usually have warning labels. Even if they sometimes appear in drinking water, they aren't in high quantities like this. They are usually minimal. Ignore it if you choose to, but I don't want to drink this stuff. Don't come crying to me when a fracking operation opens in your back yard.




Offline Paul Muad-Dib

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #15 on: June 15, 2016, 07:25:01 pm »
Apparently we just passed the 400 ppm threshold all year of atmospheric carbon for a definite rise of 2 Celsius in global temperature that can't be avoided, and sooner than expected. No more prevention, only mitigation measures now. Permafrost is really thawing, apparently causing large explosive ground holes in some regions of Russia, and in some cases house and road collapse. This year probably the measurement was exacerbated by the El Nino effect but there's no doubt now, carbon is rising fast and temperatures WILL rise globally.

Plant more trees. They fix atmospheric carbon back out of the atmosphere. Plant, plant, plant.

I noticed in the last 5 years more and more wind farms springing up in my area, so a least they're looking toward sustainables and non fossil fuel electric. They still need to get those nations belching inordinate amounts of <poo> into the air (looking at you China) to conform or we'll be looking at serious environmental change and damage in the next 50-100 yrs and lots of human casualty as a result.

Offline Devlyn

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #16 on: June 15, 2016, 07:46:59 pm »
Global warming and a thirty foot rise in sea levels gives me waterfront property and weather like Miami. Not seeing the problem! :laugh:

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Offline Paul Muad-Dib

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #17 on: June 16, 2016, 07:31:15 pm »
I'd need at least 100 ft rise for it to start bothering me - I live on a study sea cliff.

I guess there's just the dustbowls and crop failures to worry about then... anyone who didn't touch GM foods will probably end up eating it because they'll probably need to engineer hardier crops.

Offline JoanneB

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Re: Environmental concerns
« Reply #18 on: June 16, 2016, 07:42:59 pm »
Once the isle of Manhattan goes underwater my property located just across the (soon NOT to be) Hudson River will have waves lapping at front porches just a block away from 240 ft above mean high tide elevation  ;D
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