Tuesday, June 09, 2009

Loose Ends

There was good story on the shut down of a nuclear power plant in the Sacramento Bee on Sunday. It was closed by popular vote 20 years ago. Sacramento Utilities (SMUD) has since gone into wind, solar and preventative means. The article listed one means I never thought of. My wife and I have always been amazed at how many trees there are here, particularly after living in semi-arid Colorado. Well, SMUD planted 500,000 trees to keep it cooler as along term energy plan. It works! I had a long conversation with a treatment geek who works with our firm in Burbank and she was going gaga over the green roofs she had seen in Chicago for cooling. They have been used in Germany extensively and are now finding a home in the Midwest. I am reminded of John Todd's Living Machines he wanted to introduce to urban areas and the greenhouse wastewater plants he conceived. They worked well and had specific application. In fact, for small plants, as photovoltaic cells are further developed, they would work great. Here is another source for living machines. Plants do amazing things. There has been little follow up on the work of Kathe Siedel of the Max Plank Institute as she tried to show which plants preferred which pollutants, or emitted antibacterial and antiviral secretions that could be used to partially disinfect wastewater.

Another item I saw last week were signs over plowed fields stating Congress Caused Dust Bowl. This meant the field was prepped and plowed, but there was no water allocation for irrigation as there just is not enough water for people, wildlife and farming. This year farming is losing. In fact, there was yet another ruling in Congress that fish ladders have to be built so slamon can spawn where they used to. This a means there must be enough water allocated for fish spawning. Apparently it has gotten to the point where killer whale pods are starving because there is no salmon to eat because they have no spawning areas anymore. This is a water battle that will get worse. There were miles of dead fruit trees down I-5 as irrigation is not available. CA is used to redirecting water, draining lakes and rivers, etc for economic advantage This is codified in state law, even for wastewater.

Finally, I see the Supreme Court is stopping the Chrysler sale until it can review the claims of those who are losing investment. This could be a rough one. And will effect GM. This could put a big stop on any economic recovery. Maybe the Court could look at bonuses while they're at it for bankers.


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