Monday, April 14, 2014

Ice Melt then Methane?

Film documentary "Last Hours"

"Last Hours" describes a science-based climate scenario where a tipping point to runaway climate change is triggered by massive releases of frozen methane. Methane, a powerful greenhouse gas, has already started to percolate into the open seas and atmosphere from methane hydrate deposits beneath melting arctic ice, from the warming northern-hemisphere tundra, and from worldwide continental-shelf undersea methane clathrate pools.

"Last Hours" is presented and narrated by Thom Hartmann and directed by Leila Conners. Executive Producers are George DiCaprio and Earl Katz. Last Hours is produced by Mathew Schmid of Tree Media Foundation, and was written by Thom Hartmann, Sam Sacks, and Leila Conners. Music is composed and performed by Francesco Lupica. 

Last Hours

Video uploaded by U Tube user Last Hours


The "Sleeping Giant" 

Permafrost zones occupy nearly a quarter of the exposed land area of the Northern Hemisphere.  NASA's Carbon in Arctic Reservoirs Vulnerability Experiment (CARVE) is probing deep into the frozen lands above the Arctic Circle in Alaska to measure emissions of the greenhouse gases carbon dioxide and methane from thawing permafrost - signals that may hold a key to Earth's climate future.

"Permafrost soils are warming even faster than Arctic air temperatures as much as 2.7 to 4.5 degrees Fahrenheit (1.5 to 2.5 degrees Celsius) in just the past 30 years," Miller said. "As heat from Earth's surface penetrates into permafrost, it threatens to mobilize these organic carbon reservoirs and release them into the atmosphere as carbon dioxide and methane, upsetting the Arctic's carbon balance and greatly exacerbating global warming." 

Current climate models do not adequately account for the impact of climate change on permafrost and how its degradation may affect regional and global climate. Scientists want to know how much permafrost carbon may be vulnerable to release as Earth's climate warms, and how fast it may be released.

Sleeping Climate Giant 

Video uploaded by U tube user ScienceAtNASA


Saturday, April 12, 2014

Tanks moving into Ukraine

Ukraine's coup-imposed president Aleksandr Turchinov has ordered the protester-held local govt HQ in Donetsk to be taken under 'state protection' as armed personnel and armored vehicles have been reported moving into the eastern region of Ukraine.  Also the Russian Foreign Ministry has voiced concerns over the buildup of Ukrainian forces and US mercenaries in the southeastern part of the country, calling on Kiev to immediately cease military preparations which could lead to a civil war.  "We are particularly concerned that the operation involves some 150 American mercenaries from a private company Greystone Ltd., dressed in the uniform of the Ukrainian special task police unit Sokol," the Russian Foreign Ministry said in a statement.  "Organizers and participants of such incitement are assuming a huge responsibility for threatening upon the rights, freedoms and lives of Ukrainian citizens as well as the stability of Ukraine."   US Air Force Gen. Philip Breedlove commander in charge of the NATO alliance's military presence in Europe said we have concerns about further escalation have been rampant in the days last week that Russia had not only amassed roughly 40,000 troops near the federation's border with eastern Ukraine.  But also has the resources to invade and annex that portion of the country as well in the span of just three to five days. 

Channel "RT TV" 

Video uploaded by U Tube user Globe Backyard TV


Thursday, April 3, 2014

URTHECAST Up and Running

When you speak to astronauts, they all say that going to space fundamentally changes them. They see how small the globe is, with no borders between countries, and they all come back with a greater sense of connectedness, and a renewed appreciation of our responsibility to protect the planet. Our goal at UrtheCast is to recreate that astronaut experience, in Ultra HD, and stream it across the web. Releasing this image is just the start of that democratization.

UrtheCast is a Vancouver-based Canadian company that will distribute the operational software for the first publicly accessible high definition cameras installed on the International Space Station. The company went public on the Toronto Stock Exchange in June 2013.

The camera systems to be operated by UrtheCast are part of an international project involving several nations, primarily Russia through the Russian Space Agency, (I hope we can get over ourselves with this sanction crap) Canada and the United Kingdom. The UrtheCast service will be accessible online and will allow users to access the two UrtheCast cameras from their homes to examine places or events. One medium resolution and one high resolution camera have been built by the British Rutherford Appleton Laboratory (RAL). The resolution on the ground is given as 5 m for medium resolution and 1 m for high resolution. 

Press Release:

VANCOUVER, April 3, 2014  UrtheCast Corp. (TSX:UR) (“UrtheCast” or the “Company”) is extremely pleased to announce its first release of Earth imagery, captured by UrtheCast’s medium-resolution camera (MRC) onboard the International Space Station (ISS). 

“This is a pivotal moment for the company and for everyone who’s been a part of the vision that we set in motion in 2010,” stated UrtheCast Co-founder and Chief Executive Officer, Scott Larson. “Our team has been working extremely hard to make certain that we reach this goal of democratizing a very powerful perspective on the world. We couldn't be more grateful to the incredibly determined engineering teams at UrtheCast, RSC Energia, and Rutherford Appleton Laboratories.” 

Captured on March 28, 2014, at 1pm GMT, this image is centered around the city of Moneague, Jamaica, and has a 6-meter GSD (Ground Sampling Distance). The photo is approximately 3200 x 8000 pixels, and covers approximately 300 square kilometers. The MRC is a multispectral, nadir-pointing imager that captures 6-meter class, 50-km wide swaths of still imagery, which will be made commercially available on the UrtheCast platform. While the images will be made available on an individual basis, they will also be processed and constantly streamed to the UrtheCast platform. This will be realized on the interactive platform as a near real-time flyover view of the planet directly below the ISS as it orbits the globe 16 times every day. 

It's so true what the astronauts' say when looking down on Earth from the ISS that you do come away with another perspective of our home and the inhabitants. 

So this is one way to get away from all the indifference going on the ground and lets remember what helped build this platform in which we all took part, one of the greatest Birds ever The Space Shuttle and how she brought a world together. Unlike today where sanctions and war drums are pulling us apart.

To the so called masters, leaders and or rulers, nobody owns anything, we're lucky she allows us to dwell here, snap out of it!  All you cup cakes need to go up on the Station, look out the window and find out you're no more significant than a Tree Frog.


Video uploaded by U Tube user Urthecast


Thursday, March 27, 2014

Oil Sands- Bituminous Deposits ah Tar Sand

Alberta Tar Sands

A peak in media coverage of global warming occurred in early 2007 from there many governments around the world had convinced the public to change your habits in lessening your carbon footprint. While all that was going on, in the background what was taking place is the most devastating human development in mining, Oil Sand.

From Wikipedia:

The exploitation of bituminous deposits and seeps dates back to Paleolithic times. The earliest known use of bitumen was by Neanderthals, some 40,000 years ago. Bitumen has been found adhering to stone tools used by Neanderthals at sites in Syria. After the arrival of Homo sapiens, humans used bitumen for construction of buildings and waterproofing of reed boats, among other uses. In ancient Egypt, the use of bitumen was important in preparing Egyptian mummies.

 In ancient times, bitumen was primarily a Mesopotamian commodity used by the Sumerians and Babylonians, although it was also found in the Levant and Persia. The area along the Tigris and Euphrates rivers was littered with hundreds of pure bitumen. The Mesopotamians used the bitumen for waterproofing boats and buildings. In North America, the early European fur traders found Canadian First Nations peoples using bitumen from the vast Athabasca oil sands to waterproof their birch-bark canoes. In Europe, they were extensively mined near the French city of Pechelbronn, where the vapor separation process was in use in 1742.

The name tar sands was applied to bituminous sands in the late 19th and early 20th century. People who saw the bituminous sands during this period were familiar with the large amounts of tar residue produced in urban areas as a by-product of the manufacture of coal gas for urban heating and lighting. The word "tar" to describe these natural bitumen deposits is really a misnomer, since, chemically speaking, tar is a human-made substance produced by the destructive distillation of organic material, usually coal.


The Alberta oil sands have been in commercial production since the original Great Canadian Oil Sands (now Suncor Energy) mine began operation in 1967. Despite the increasing levels of production, the process of extraction and processing of oil sands can still be considered to be in its infancy; with new technologies and stakeholders oversight providing an ever lower environmental footprint. 

A second mine, operated by the Syncrude consortium, began operation in 1978 and is the biggest mine of any type in the world. The third mine in the Athabasca Oil Sands, the Albian Sands consortium of Shell Canada, Chevron Corporation, and Western Oil Sands Inc. purchased by Marathon Oil Corporation in 2007 began operation in 2003. Petro-Canada was also developing a $33 billion Fort Hills Project, in partnership with UTS Energy Corporation and Teck Cominco, which lost momentum after the 2009 merger of Petro-Canada into Suncor. 

Surface Mining:

Since Great Canadian Oil Sands (now Suncor) started operation of its mine in 1967, bitumen has been extracted on a commercial scale from the Athabasca Oil Sands by surface mining. In the Athabasca sands there are very large amounts of bitumen covered by little overburden, making surface mining the most efficient method of extracting it. The overburden consists of water-laden muskeg (peat bog) over top of clay and barren sand. The oil sands themselves are typically 40 to 60 metres (130 to 200 ft) deep, sitting on top of flat limestone rock. Originally, the sands were mined with draglines and bucket-wheel excavators and moved to the processing plants by conveyor belts. In recent years, companies such as Syncrude and Suncor have switched to much cheaper shovel-and-truck operations using the biggest power shovels (100 or more tons) and dump trucks (400 tons) in the world. This has held production costs to around US$27 per barrel of synthetic crude oil despite rising energy and labour costs. About two tons of oil sands are required to produce one barrel of oil.

The near future plans 30 to 40 more tar sand mines, ah we're all down steam of this.

Look at an time lapse of the mining from 1984 to 2011

Tailing Ponds:

There is conflicting research on the effects of the oil sands development on aquatic life. In 2007, Environment Canada completed a study that shows high deformity rates in fish embryos exposed to the oil sands. David W. Schindler, a limnologist from the University of Alberta, co-authored a study on Alberta's oil sands' contribution of aromatic polycyclic compounds, some of which are known carcinogens, to the Athabasca River and its tributaries. Scientists, local doctors, and residents supported a letter sent to the Prime Minister in September 2010 calling for an independent study of Lake Athabasca (which is downstream of the oil sands) to be initiated due to the rise of deformities and tumors found in fish caught there.

The bulk of the research that defends the oil sands development is done by the Regional Aquatics Monitoring Program (RAMP). RAMP studies show that deformity rates are normal compared to historical data and the deformity rates in rivers upstream of the oil sands. These results are dubious, however, as RAMP is funded largely by those energy companies with direct interests in the relevant environments. Further, unlike academia, where peer review happens on a per study basis, RAMP does a peer review of the entire organization only once every five years. Hence, RAMP cannot be said to meet widely accepted scientific standards. The European Union has indicated that it may vote to label oil sands oil as "highly polluting".  Yea Think?! 

In 2014 results of a study published in the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences showed that official reports on emissions were not high enough. Report authors noted that, "emissions of organic substances with potential toxicity to humans and the environment are a major concern surrounding the rapid industrial development in the Athabasca oil sands region (AOSR)." This study found that tailings ponds were an indirect pathway transporting uncontrolled releases of evaporative emissions of three representative polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons phenanthrene, pyrene, and benzo and that these emissions had been previously unreported.
The Future:

 In May 2008, the Italian oil company Eni announced a project to develop a small oil sands deposit in the Republic of the Congo. Production is scheduled to commence in 2014 and is estimated to eventually yield a total of 40,000 barrels per day. 

In the United States oil sands resources are primarily concentrated in Eastern Utah. According to the WEC, natural bitumen is reported in 598 deposits in 23 countries, with the largest deposits in Canada, Kazakhstan, and Russia. 

End Note: Carbon footprint?  The drinking water and wildlife along with us will be getting sick and dying off long before we end fracking and this consumption of the most delicate land. The cost of this is $27 per barrel, now has anyone factored in the reclaiming of the land and the cleaning of contaminates in the water?  Ah there goes the neighborhood and any profits for an industry involved in this but no worry they pack up and leave us with a clean up bill. The tax payers are always willing to take it in the bum, even if you die off there's future generations that have to foot the bill.  No wonder we cry when were born, you ever wonder that? 

So will just keep digging? 

For almost twenty years, Garth's photography of threatened wilderness regions, devastation, and the impacts on indigenous peoples, has appeared in the world's leading publications. His recent images from the boreal region of Canada have helped lead to significant victories and large new protected areas in the Northwest Territories, Quebec, and Ontario. Garth's major touring exhibit on the Tar Sands premiered on Los Angeles in 2011 and recently appeared in New York. Garth is a Fellow of the International League Of Conservation Photographers.

Blue Earth Alliance

Garth Lenz

SuncoR (a word from the sponsor)

Video uploaded by U Tube user TEDx Talks


Friday, March 21, 2014

Over Fishing

World Wildlife Fund

New Oceana Report Exposes Nine of the Dirtiest U.S. Fisheries

Press Release… Oceana Launches New Campaign to Stop the Wasted Catch of Fish and Ocean Wildlife 

 March 20, 2014 Washington, D.C. 
Contact: Dustin Cranor ( | 954-348-1314, 954-348-1314 (cell) Amelia Vorpahl ( | 202-467-1968, 202-476-0632 

 Today, Oceana released a new report exposing nine of the dirtiest fisheries in the United States. These nine fisheries combined throw away almost half of what they catch and are responsible for more than 50 percent of all reported bycatch in the U.S., injuring and killing thousands of protected and endangered species every year. 

In the report titled Wasted Catch: Unsolved Bycatch Problems in U.S. Fisheries, Oceana explains that despite significant progress in the last decade, the catch of non-target fish and ocean wildlife, or “bycatch”, remains a significant problem in domestic fisheries. In fact, researchers have estimated that approximately 20 percent of the total U.S. catch is thrown away each year.

“Anything can be bycatch,” said Dominique Cano-Stocco, campaign director at Oceana. “Whether it’s the thousands of sea turtles that are caught to bring you shrimp or the millions of pounds of cod and halibut that are thrown overboard after fishermen have reached their quota, bycatch is a waste of our ocean’s resources. Bycatch also represents a real economic loss when one fisherman trashes another fisherman’s catch.” 

Though some fishing methods are more harmful than others, researchers, fisheries managers and conservationists all agree that bycatch is generally highest in open ocean trawl, longline and gillnet fisheries. These three gear types alone are responsible for the majority of bycatch in the U.S. and are used by these nine dirty fisheries.

“Hundreds of thousands of dolphins, whales, sharks, sea birds, sea turtles and fish needlessly die each year as a result of indiscriminate fishing gear,” said Amanda Keledjian, report author and marine scientist at Oceana. “It’s no wonder that bycatch is such a significant problem, with trawls as wide as football fields, longlines extending up to 50 miles with thousands of baited hooks and gillnets up to two miles long. The good news is that there are solutions – bycatch is avoidable.” 

Unfortunately, the bycatch problem in the U.S. is likely much worse than realized, because most fisheries do not have adequate monitoring in place to document exactly what and how much is caught and subsequently discarded. In some fisheries, as few as One in 100 fishing trips carry impartial observers to document catch, while many are not monitored at all, leading to large gaps in knowledge and poor quality data. 

Nine Dirty Fisheries (based on data published by the National Marine Fisheries Service): 

Southeast Snapper-Grouper Longline Fishery (66% discarded) –More than 400,000 sharks were captured and discarded in one year.

California Set Gillnet Fishery (65% of all animals discarded) – More than 30,000 sharks and rays as well as valuable fish were discarded as waste over three years. 

Southeast Shrimp Trawl Fishery (64% discarded) – For every pound of shrimp landed, 1 pound of billfish is discarded; thousands of sea turtles are killed annually. 

California Drift Gillnet Fishery (63% of all animals discarded) – Almost 550 marine mammals were entangled or killed over five years. 

Gulf of Alaska Flatfish Trawl Fishery (35% discarded) – More than 34 million pounds of fish were thrown overboard in one year, including 2 million pounds of halibut and 5 million pounds of cod.

Northeast Bottom Trawl (35% discarded) – More than 50 million pounds of fish are thrown overboard every year.

Mid-Atlantic Bottom Trawl Fishery (33% discarded) – Almost 200 marine mammals and 350 sea turtles were captured or killed in one year.

Atlantic Highly Migratory Species Longline Fishery (23% discarded) – More than 75% of the wasted fish in this fishery are valuable tuna, swordfish and other billfish targeted by the fishery.

New England and Mid-Atlantic Gillnet Fishery (16% discarded) – More than 2,000 dolphins, porpoises and seals were captured in one year.

“Reducing bycatch is a win/win for fishermen and conservationists,” said Cano-Stocco. “By eliminating wasteful and harmful fishing practices we can restore and maintain fish populations that are essential to renewed abundance and healthy oceans, while also preventing the deaths of whales, dolphins, seals and sea turtles.”

“The solution can be as simple as banning the use of drift gillnets, transitioning to proven cleaner fishing gears, requiring Turtle Excluder Devices in trawls, or avoiding bycatch hotspots,” said Dr. Geoff Shester, California program director at Oceana. “Proven solutions and innovative management strategies can significantly reduce the unnecessary deaths of sharks, sea turtles, dolphins and other marine life, while maintaining vibrant fisheries.” 

In order to reduce the amount of wasted catch and the number of marine animals killed in U.S. fisheries, Oceana is calling on the federal government to do three things: 1) COUNT everything that is caught in a fishery, including bycatch species; 2) CAP the amount of wasted catch in each fishery using scientifically based limits; and 3) CONTROL and avoid bycatch by making improvements such as using cleaner fishing gear and enhanced monitoring. 

To access all of Oceana’s materials, including the full report, summary of the findings, fisheries fact sheets, map of the nine dirty fisheries, expert interviews, b-roll, photos, infographics and more, please visit Oceana.

 Video uploaded by U Tube user Revolution Movie


Ending Overfishing The EU 

Massive Trawl Scare

This film presents an unquestionable case for why over fishing needs to end and shows that there is still an opportunity for change. Reform of the EU's Common Fisheries Policy is almost complete. Fisheries ministers and members of the European Parliament, MEPs, are negotiating a deal for the future EU fisheries subsidies, which should support and end to EU over fishing. 

 Video uploaded by U Tube user OCEAN2012EU


Friday, March 14, 2014

Signs of Change


From HawkkeyDavisChannel:

 Recent storms worldwide have been destroying records with an onslaught of precipitation leading to more 100 year events which devastated populated areas. This video includes rare, strange and extreme weather that had taken place over the last month or so and it's not getting any better since my last upload, it only worsen! 

This series does not mean the world is ending! These are documentaries of series of extreme weather events that are leading to bigger earth changes. If you are following the series, then you are seeing the signs. So much more has happen than this video shows, it was getting way to long from all the extremes. This video does not include the numerous record highs/lows temps and sinkholes around the world. I also couldn't find any footage of the meteor exploding over Argentina. Thanks for sharing this video and watching! Stay safe everyone! 

Some comments on the vid: 

Dawson Davis:  Wales Uk here. Notice some weird behavior with the wind over the last 10 months . When we have a storm (like the one last month) it gails as expected. However, the rest of the time its just not there. Barley even a breeze most days. There doesn't seem to be much happening between nothing and gail force. And in both cases the wind doesn't seem to want to pic a direction. Its odd. 

davidstubeshow:  Weather Warfare what else can you say. America and other countries have been using weather and food as warfare since the early 60's. 

Rodd Wayne:  Great compilation! Keep in mind these events are cyclical, the fact that they are happening in such rapid succession is alarming! 

Electrical Universal:  meanwhile in Canada we have gotten the most snow I have seen in at least 10 years, also by far the coldest I have seen (Midwest) welcome to the new ice age :) brought to by gran minimum. enjoy.

Leandro Cabrera:  You think this is bad wait until the summer. 

Dano Pierce:  This is the worse winter over all that I can remember. Here is Chicago, it has made travel and parking a nightmare some days. We still have cooler temps and about 2 feet of snow yet to melt. We have had bad storms in the past but I don't recall this much snow and cold for so long. We have been feeding the birds and took in a feral stray cat that needed shelter from the relentless cold and snow. 

Nathan Aqui Y Alla.:  Just listen to all the peoples comments on here how each one gives a personal account of how true this vid is. Me too; Here in Boise Id. Never ever ever seen a winter like this. 

Some weather events from Feb, 2014 

 Video uploaded by U Tube user HawkkeyDavisChannel


Sunday, March 9, 2014

Nature- business as usual

Once upon a time, is how great stories begin.

I'll prove we're in this together, how wolves change a river

How wolves change rivers:  When wolves were reintroduced to Yellowstone National Park in the United States after being absent nearly 70 years, the most remarkable "trophic (level of an organism, the position it occupies in a food chain) cascade" occurred. What is a trophic cascade and how exactly do wolves change rivers?  George Monbiot explains in this short movie remix, this short is the matrix of nature, slow and steady, nothing is left out. 

"When we try to pick out anything by itself, we find it hitched to everything else in the Universe." - John Muir

A mental note:  There are "elk" pictured in this video when the narrator is referring to "deer." This is because the narrator is British and the British word for "elk" is "red deer" or "deer" for short.  This short is gonna make ya feel good all over.

For more from George Monbiot

Video uploaded by U Tube user Sustainable Man