Category Archives: Environment

Relationship status: it’s complicated

The Dodo: Bald Eagle Trio Is Raising Their Babies Together. “The three parents share incubation responsibilities for the eggs … Like their relationship, their history is complicated.”

“This trio has been together since 2017, according to the Stewards of the Upper Mississippi River Refuge, a nonprofit organization that, among other things, provides a live stream of the nest. But the two males, Valor 1 and Valor 2, have been together for longer — since 2013 — and they began as rivals. Valor 2 tried to replace Valor 1 as the king of the nest — but Valor 1 decided not to leave.

At that time, there was a female in the nest, Hope. She and both Valors raised two eagle chicks together back in 2014. She was seen mating with both Valor 1 and Valor 2. The trio was seen the next year, too, taking care of the nest. In 2017, three little eaglets were hatched and raised by the trio. Somehow, the nontraditional situation seemed to just click.”

There’s a webcam of the nest.

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“I’m not for impeachment… because it divides the country. And he’s just not worth it.”

The Washington Post Magazine: Nancy Pelosi on Impeaching Trump: ‘He’s Just Not Worth It’. “In a wide-ranging interview, the country’s most powerful Democrat says Trump is unfit to be president — “ethically,” “intellectually” and “curiosity-wise” — but impeachment would be too divisive.”

There have been increasing calls, including from some of your members, for impeachment of the president.

I’m not for impeachment. This is news. I’m going to give you some news right now because I haven’t said this to any press person before. But since you asked, and I’ve been thinking about this: Impeachment is so divisive to the country that unless there’s something so compelling and overwhelming and bipartisan, I don’t think we should go down that path, because it divides the country. And he’s just not worth it.

A lot of Americans are really anxious about where the country is right now, and some of them feel the nation’s institutions are in a perilous state. Do you share that concern?

No. Here’s why I don’t: Our country is great. It’s a great country. Our founders gave us the strongest foundation. … All the challenges we have faced, we can withstand anything. But maybe not two [Trump] terms. So we have to make sure that doesn’t happen.”

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Amid climate change, FEMA and Government Aid Widen Wealth Inequality

NPR All things considered: How Federal Disaster Money Favors The Rich.

“isasters are becoming more common in America. In the early and mid-20th century, fewer than 20 percent of U.S. counties experienced a disaster each year. Today, it’s about 50 percent. According to the 2018 National Climate Assessment, climate change is already driving more severe droughts, floods and wildfires in the U.S. And those disasters are expensive. The federal government spends billions of dollars annually helping communities rebuild and prevent future damage. But an NPR investigation has found that across the country, white Americans and those with more wealth often receive more federal dollars after a disaster than do minorities and those with less wealth. Federal aid isn’t necessarily allocated to those who need it most; it’s allocated according to cost-benefit calculations meant to minimize taxpayer risk.

Put another way, after a disaster, rich people get richer and poor people get poorer. And federal disaster spending appears to exacerbate that wealth inequality.”

“They’re in cover-up mode, I’ve been cut off from any kind of information.”

AZ Central: Grand Canyon tourists exposed for years to radiation in museum building, safety manager says.

“For nearly two decades at the Grand Canyon, tourists, employees, and children on tours passed by three paint buckets stored in the National Park’s museum collection building, unaware that they were being exposed to radiation.

Although federal officials learned last year that the 5-gallon containers were brimming with uranium ore, then removed the radioactive specimens, the park’s safety director alleges nothing was done to warn park workers or the public that they might have been exposed to unsafe levels of radiation.

In a rogue email sent to all Park Service employees on Feb. 4, Elston “Swede” Stephenson — the safety, health and wellness manager — described the alleged cover-up as “a top management failure” and warned of possible health consequences.
[…]
In his letter to colleagues, Stephenson apologized for the untimely notice. He stressed that exposure may not be severe depending on how close individuals got to the source, how long they were exposed, what they were wearing, and other factors. He also emphasized that employees will not necessarily suffer health consequences, but should consider receiving a medical screening.

“Of particular concern are 1000s of children attending ‘shows’ in very close proximity to the uranium,” he wrote. Those presentations lasted a half hour or more, he said, yet radiation dosages could have exceeded federal safety standards within seconds.

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“North is on the move”

NPR Science: As Magnetic North Pole Zooms Toward Siberia, Scientists Update World Magnetic Model.

“North is on the move, and that’s a problem for your smartphone’s maps.

Earth’s geographic north pole is fixed. But the planet’s magnetic north pole — the north that your compass points toward — wanders in the direction of Siberia at a rate of more than 34 miles per year.

That movement may seem slow, but it has forced scientists to update their model of Earth’s magnetic field a year earlier than expected so that navigational services, including map-based phone apps, continue to work accurately.”

NPR: The North Magnetic Pole Is Shifting East, Fast. “NPR’s Ari Shapiro speaks with Nature reporter Alex Witze about a rapid shift in the Earth’s magnetic poles.”