News That Matters
"I don't know half of you half as well as I should like; and I like less than half of you half as well as you deserve." - J.R.R. Tolkien
Good Thursday Morning,
It's Charles Darwin's birthday today. Have you evolved?
If you haven't noticed, it's windy out there. The National Weather Service says that gusts of up to 55 mph can be expected from mid-morning through mid-afternoon. Hold on to your hats!
I received a phone call last evening, as I know some others have as well, to join 6100 others in a 'town hall' style meeting on the bailout with Congressman John Hall. In his introduction the Congressman says that now is not the time to point fingers or lay blame for the financial mess the nation is in.
If you've been following the elections in Israel and your head is still spinning you're in good company. Unlike the US where the system has been crafted to allow for only two political parties to ever gain or hold power, Israel's system encourages a multitude of political parties.
In the elections just finished, the left-leaning Kadima party holds 28 seats while the right-leaning Likud party holds 27. Thirteen seats are held by the socialist leaning Labor party, and 15 by the extreme right-wing Yisrael Beitenu party. It's no surprise that Israeli's living on occupied land in the West Bank voted heavily for Likud and Yisrael Beitenu while metropolitan cities like Tel Aviv voted Kadima and Labor. It's also no wonder that cities like Sderot and Beersheva, the target of thousands of missile and rocket attacks over the years voted heavily right-wing.Website Watch:
If the current round of taxpayer funded banking system bailouts has you as irked as it does me, visit whatyououghttoknow.com for the latest video from these boys. You might even recognize the face.Tomorrow brings our weekly Things To Do Edition so if you or your organization has an event this weekend or next week, please get it in by this afternoon.
And now, The News:
The group’s signature vessel, the sloop Clearwater, will also call Beacon home, said Clearwater Board Chairman Allan Shope.
“Clearwater getting a home port dock near the ferry or on the ferry dock and a building right next to that, that greets children as they come off the train from New York City will be a fantastic contribution to the City of Beacon,” he said.
PUTNAM VALLEY – A high school teacher hit a telephone pole. A parent, followed by a student, overturned their cars. All three accidents occurred on a stretch of Peekskill Hollow Road near the high school on the snowy morning of Jan. 23.
According to the Putnam County Sheriff’s Department, 15 accidents have taken place on the road since Jan. 31, 2009, though none involved personal injuries or fatalities.
Some officials and area residents believe that such accidents are a common occurrence and that Peekskill Hollow Road is in desperate need of renovation in order to make it a safer thoroughfare. An $8 million plan to do just that has been resurrected by the Putnam County Highway Department and the roadwork is scheduled to begin this fall.
The international design company explains that they created the 360 Paper Water Bottle in response to the quantity of water bottles being consumed around the globe. “It’s no secret that blow-molded plastic bottles are filling landfills, but according to the National Association for PET Container Resources (NAPCOR), 2.7 million tons of plastic PET bottles hit US shelves in 2006. Of that 2.7 million tons, four fifths went into landfills. In 2005, 7.5 billion gallons of water were on US shelves,” explains Brandimage.
ALBANY — Democrats took control of the State Senate last month after more than four decades of Republican rule, then set out to determine how the Senate’s own budget of nearly $100 million and its attendant perks were being distributed.
They are still trying to figure it out.
They recently realized there are some 75 employees working at the Senate’s own printing plant, a plain brick building on the outskirts of Albany. On Long Island, they found a small television studio, which had been set up — all with public money, with two press aides on hand to help operate it — for the exclusive use of Republican senators to record cable TV shows.
Democrats also came across what they are calling the “Brunomobile,” a $50,000 specially outfitted GMC van, with six leather captain’s chairs (some swiveling), a navigation system, rearview camera and meeting table. Joseph L. Bruno, the former Senate majority leader who was recently indicted on corruption charges, traveled in the van after his use of state helicopters sparked a feud with the Spitzer administration.
Then there are the parking spots, always at a premium near the Capitol. Democrats had been given roughly one spot per senator — there were 30 Democrats last year — and guessed there were perhaps double or even triple that controlled by the majority. Instead, they have learned, there are more than 800.
Public Service Electric and Gas, New Jersey’s largest utility, said it would unveil a five-year, one-of-a-kind plan on Tuesday to install solar panels on 200,000 utility poles in its service territory.
The project, which the utility must first present to state regulators for approval, would also include putting solar panels on schools and municipal buildings, low-income housing and areas like closed garbage dumps.
The utility expects to spend $773 million on the project, which it said would generate 120 megawatts of electricity, one-third of which should come from the panels on utility poles. That amounts to barely 1 percent of the power consumed in the state, but is about 7 percent of the state’s goal of power generated from renewable energy sources by 2020.
By then, 22.5 percent of the state’s electricity is supposed to come from renewable sources, according to New Jersey’s energy master plan.
Most solar panels on utility and municipal properties power single items, like traffic lights and parking meters. These panels, however, would feed directly into the electrical grid. By selling the electricity into the wholesale market, the utility expects to offset some of the cost of installing the panels.
Jennifer Morrill: 301-792-6238 (cell), firstname.lastname@example.org
Washington, D.C., January 23, 2009—American Farmland Trust (AFT) has issued nine farm and food policy recommendations to help guide the Obama administration towards implementing a progressive farm, food, energy and environment agenda. “At the start of a New Year and administration, American agriculture is facing both enormous challenges and opportunities. If employed, these recommendations will help reform those shortcomings and meet those opportunities in the years to come,” says Jon Scholl, AFT President.
“Protecting farmland, promoting sound stewardship and ensuring viable farms and ranches are important objectives in any strategy to improve agriculture’s capacity to be part of the solution to the issues that challenge our nation,” says AFT President Jon Scholl. “The new administration can play a vital role in ensuring that the agricultural spaces, which provide clean air, clean water and wildlife habitat across the country, remain in place.”
By: American Rivers
Statement by Betsy Otto, American Rivers
Contacts: Betsy Otto, American Rivers, (202) 347-7550 x3033
Angela Dicianno, American Rivers, (202) 347-7550 x3103
Washington, DC -- American Rivers today applauded the U.S. Senate for passing H.R. 1, the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009, which will create jobs, put our nation on the path to economic growth, and transform the way we manage clean water and rivers, bringing real health and quality of life benefits to communities nationwide.
American Rivers praised Senators Harry Reid (D-NV) and Richard Durbin (D-IL) for their leadership on the bill. American Rivers also thanked Senators Daniel Inouye (D-HI), Barbara Boxer (D-CA), Dianne Feinstein (D-CA), and Benjamin Cardin (D-MD) for their work on the clean water provisions in the bill.
The Senate version of H.R. 1 includes $2 billion for drinking water under the Drinking Water State Revolving Fund and $4 billion for clean water under the Clean Water State Revolving Fund programs.
That is what I asked myself after reading this article from the BBC, about how a western region of Scotland known as “Harris Island” is voting on whether or not to attempt to make the area a national park (Harris is not actually an island).
The area’s population has decreased by 25% over the last twenty years, prompting residents to search for methods to develop Harris’ economy and halt its declining population trend. Other than that, the BBC has provided little additional information.
Luckily, I was able to learn more by digging up an older article from a Scottish newspaper known as The Herald. The campaign to make the area a national park was kick-started by a group known as the North Harris Land Trust, a conservation group that “aims to manage, develop and conserve the assets of North Harris in a sustainable manner for the benefit of the community and the enjoyment of the wider public.”