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Found 7 results

  1. Once a common sight in much of the continent, the bald eagle was severely affected in the mid-20th century by a variety of factors, among them the thinning of egg shells attributed to use of the pesticide DDT. Bill Nye is changing his mind about GMOs after a visit to Monsanto.
  2. "Reminder: Humanity Has Made The Moon into a Garbage Pile, Wants To Keep Doing It" by Tim Herrera on washingtonpost.com The one, three-word question: Does anybody care? If we could take the entirety of human waste (including radioactive waste) generated throughout history, and successfully launch it to the Moon, would it matter? There must come a point where the universe is considered "a bunch of mass," and that both we and our garbage are nothing more than subatomic specks, eventually to be annihilated by the Sun exploding. Does polluting the Moon reach that point, or is there some degree of urgency that I'm not seeing? I suppose that, for people who hope to colonize the Moon in the future, this might be something more than an academic issue, but I'm not in that camp just yet. Bonus! Here is the first picture ever taken of the Earth from the Moon, on Aug 23, 1966, by the Lunar Orbiter I, as the grapes were ripening in the second-most successful Bordeaux vintage of the decade: What makes this seemingly uninteresting picture so philosophically fascinating is that, at the time it was taken, the photograph contained every single known thing ever to have lived. I'm assuming that the actual photo didn't clip off the top part of Earth, and that no skeletons or ashes had previously been shot into space; I'm also discounting any microscopic particles on the orbiter, and noting that most of everything is blocked either by darkness, or by the Earth itself. Am I missing anything, other than, say, sanity, or a brain that's larger than a walnut?
  3. It's hard to believe, but when I left working as a contractor with the EPA in 2009, I'd worked with them for 60% of their existence. Yes, I'm the brains (or semi-brains) behind their primary enforcement system: ECHO (if anyone wants to purchase that domain name, contact me). "It's Been One Year of Amazing Scott Pruitt Achievements, All of Them Horrible" by Amy Thomson and Rebecca Leber on motherjones.com Make no mistake: If you feel the EPA should be dismantled (and remember: It didn't even exist until 1970), then Scott Pruitt is your man. However, if you *don't* think so, then Scott Pruitt is one of the most destructive people ever to work in the federal government. And the fact that he's doing his covert, dirty work under-the-radar during this incredible administration's tenure is just unbelievable - do you *really* think Richard Nixon is all that bad, having lied about Watergate? Really?? Does this not seem almost like Teapot Dome Scandal territory? Watergate, despite all the hullabaloo, wasn't *Jack Diddly Shit*.
  4. Forgive me. But if you can watch this without laughing, you're a bigger person than I am:
  5. The Bakken Pipeline (also known as "The Dakota Access Pipeline") is a nearly 2,000-km pipeline that's to run from Northwest North Dakota to Southern Illinois. However, a portion of it is going to run underneath the Mississippi RiverMissouri River near the Standing Rock Sioux reservation - therein lies the conflict. "Judge Rules that Construction Can Begin on Dakota Access Pipeline" by Merrit Kennedy on npr.org A request by the Standing Rock Sioux to temporarily halt construction of the pipeline has been denied by a U.S. District Judge James E. Boasberg, although three federal agencies have, for now, blocked the pipeline at Lake Oahe (which, ironically, only exists because of a dam that was constructed on the Missouri River).
  6. A single drop of rain, falling onto the roof of the Baseball Hall of Fame just above the bust of Mickey Mantle, will end up in the Chesapeake Bay. That's how vast the Chesapeake Bay Watershed is. For those who don't know the precise definition, a "watershed" can be visualized as the trough where a single drop of rain will travel (in theory). A tourist discarding a cigarette butt on the grounds of the Hall of Fame is harming the Chesapeake Bay Blue Crab.
  7. For several years, and certainly during the past several pothole-ridden days, I have wondered to myself, "What if?" Having spent nearly 25 years working with the EPA, I have often asked myself where my recyclables are ending up? I see them alongside trails in the form of benches. I see them in carryout food containers. But I don't think I've ever seen them underneath my tires, unless I run over an old plastic bottle. What if? What if we could make highways out of recycled material? Asphalt is hot, it cracks, it forms potholes (in the past few days, I have probably screamed out loud five times when I hit a pothole that felt like I just ran over a curb). I have never looked into this before in my life, but I'm going to Google it, right now. --- Hmmm ... Where do I start? --- Okay, I just started with the fourth one, since that was published by the Department of Transportation - that deals with the opposite issue: recycling existing highways; not making highways out of recycled waste. Then there's this by the EPA: "Using Recycled Industrial Materials In Roadways" So, as I figured, someone has at least thought of this before (I can't tell you how many times I've had *amazing* ideas, sometimes being sure that nobody could have possibly thought of them before, that have already been patented - this was definitely *not* one of those times, as I couldn't imagine that someone hasn't thought of it by now). --- Alright, I'm done. I wanted this idea out there just in case nobody was working on it, because it seems like such a *good* use of waste, but not being an engineer, I have no idea about things such as tensile strengths, heat capacities, or any of those other "terms" that you've heard of before, but don't really know what they mean. I don't know if this is even possible, but hopefully someone, somewhere, is looking into it. And sure enough:
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