neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Default)

Examiner.com: 2013 wettest year in Michigan history
It's official. Last year was the wettest year on record for Michigan.

According to NOAA's national overview for 2013, which was released on January 21, 2014, the average precipitation in Michigan was the highest in 119 years of record-keeping. Michigan had 40.12 inches of precipitation, 8.9 inches above average. This beat the previous record wet year of 1985 by 0.64 inch.

Other states setting weather records last year were North Dakota, which also had its wettest year on record, and California, where Governor Jerry Brown recently declared a drought state of emergency after the Golden State's driest year ever.
Examiner.com: Record broken for January snowfall in Detroit
Detroit broke another weather record for precipitation today.

As if 2013 being the wettest year in Michigan history was not enough, Accuweather reports that last night's snowfall brought the total for January so far to 31.3 inches, while the Detroit Free Press is reporting 31.5 inches so far. Either total beats the previous record for the month of 29.6 inches set in January 1978 almost two inches. To add more perspective, the snowfall for this month is about a foot-and-one-half above the January average of 12.5 inches.

Don't get too attached to the current snowfall total. There are six more days left in the month and the National Weather Service predicts another weather system will bring one to two inches to the area on Sunday.
Official word on both records came this week.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)
I completely missed reposting any of my posts from Crazy Eddie's Motie News for March on the Nablopomo theme of Whether. Bad dog, no biscuits. I'll get around to organizing and posting linkspams from last month eventually. In the meantime, I'll resume my regular weekly summaries of the Nablopomo posts for April. This month, the theme is poetry. Here's what I wrote on April Fools Day.


From Nablopomo on BlogHer:
So what is the NaBloPoMo theme of the month?
POEM

In honour of National Poetry Month in April, we've made the theme POEM -- which can go in a multitude of directions. First and foremost, you can try your hand at writing some poetry. We'll be presenting a few fixed forms as well as prompts for free forms. Make a personal goal to write a haiku-a-day, write an entire post in rhymed couplets, or argue the merits of Pinterest... in sestina form.

We'll be writing about our reactions to poems -- which poems have come up at important moments in your life? Which poems do you return to again and again? Which poems have changed your mood, given you comfort, or made you want to be a poet yourself?

We'll spend the month looking at reflections of poetry in nature and social situations. And we'll be featuring YOUR poetry weekly. So get your poem on.
When I first read the theme and description, I considered not participating, as I'm not big on poetry. I especially had a hard time squaring the theme with a blog about sustainability, science, and politics, although "poetry in nature" might work. Then I realized that there were some forms of poetry that I liked, limericks and song verses. Most limericks wouldn't be fit for a family blog, but I can always find a good song for my posts. So, I'm participating again this month.
The songs that I've featured so far are:
There will be more next week, as I already have another post up.

Happy reading and happy listening!
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Default)
NaBloPoMo February 2012


It's that time again.
So what is the NaBloPoMo theme of the month?

RELATIVE

Families form in hundreds of different ways -- from the brothers and sisters you are born with to the people who become fictive kin as you go through life, our relationships define us and support us. Use the month to not only explore your connections to the obvious relatives -- your aunts, cousins, or grandparents -- but your ancestors, the people who are no longer part of your family, and the ones that you wish were related to you.
...
So tell us about your siblings. If you can name at least five things about them, it means you have at least five blog posts inside of you. And if you can do five posts, you can certainly expand that and do an extra 25 or so.
That's not really what I had in mind for this blog. If I were using my LiveJournal (not a good idea, as the service is subject to DDoS attacks, which would prevent me from fulfilling my pledge to post every day) or my Dreamwidth (I really don't want to post the name of that blog on a feminist site; I also don't want to rename it), I could do this, as both are personal blogs. Other than talking about what my relatives have done (or not done) in terms of sustainability, broadly interpreted, I think it would be off-topic.

However, these Nablopomo themes always have approved alternative interpretations.
This is also a month to look for connections between two unrelated concepts or objects. It's a month to get subjective, to state opinions, to examine your personal truth.
I do both all the time. I find two things that on the surface appear to be unrelated, but show that they really are. I also have been stating opinions all along. Looks like this topic is just fine for this blog.

Above originally posted at Crazy Eddie's Motie News.

The other Relative posts this week include:

Groundhog Day 2012 and the climate

Driving update for February 2012

Relative: Yosemite video from Vimeo

More next week.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Default)
sustainability_spheres

In the previous digest, I promised "global and national environmental issues, local (Michigan and Metro Detroit) sustainability issues, and Tea Party screw-ups." I'll do the first one, as I just posted an entry on that general topic.

Next Media Animation on the Keystone XL pipeline

Next Media Animation on Thanksgiving food inflation

Phil Plait on saving Earth from asteroids

Nebris and I have a conversation

A video gift from a student

Yes, I posted that one before. It's worth seeing again. Besides, I'm an environmentalist; I recycle.

The village of Wukan, China, in open revolt

The situation in Wukan escalates

More paranoia about Agenda 21

You'll see this one again, as it's about Tea Partiers screwing up.

Next Media Animation thinks low birth rates in the U.S. and China aren't all good

Next Media Animation on Canada leaving the Kyoto Protocol, plus a Rick Perry joke

With that last entry, the topics complete the circle, as the first and last are about Canadian tar sands.
neonvincent: Detroit where the weak are killed and eaten T-shirt design (Detroit)
A couple of hours ago, I posted Sustainability news from midwestern research universities for the week ending June 25, 2011 on Crazy Eddie's Motie News. One of the themes that emerged as I wrote this post was "how I have to add information I've learned in these posts to my teaching." This is one of the reasons I justify my blogging to my colleagues and superiors at work. They agreed, and list my science blogging as professional development. Seriously.

Following are three examples of why I use that justification and my co-workers agree.

Indiana University: IU Public Policy Institute releases report on private, public value of higher education
June 23, 2011
INDIANAPOLIS -- With recent headlines asking "Is college worth it?" and reports of a burgeoning student loan crisis, there has been considerable public discussion about the costs and benefits of higher education.

Often, those discussions are limited to how much individuals pay for school and how much they earn upon graduation. But from a policy-making perspective, evaluating higher education requires broader measures of economic and social benefits.

This is the purpose of a research review released by the Indiana University Public Policy Institute as part of its Policy Choices for Indiana's Future project. The Policy Choices initiative is designed to provide objective recommendations on key issues for future Indiana legislative and gubernatorial candidates.

"From lower incarceration and obesity rates to higher levels of civic engagement and volunteerism, education is associated with a broad array of benefits to both individuals and society," according to the report. "While the costs incurred educating our society are enormous, and growing, we must be aware that the costs of failing to do so might be even greater."
One of the mistakes people make about higher education is to consider it to be primarily an economic activity that improves the student's future earning power and decreases the student's risk of unemployment. I'm guilty of this myself, as I use Calculated Risk's graphs of unemployment over time for Americans of different education levels, such as this one.



I make the point that the students are engaging in an activity to increase their human capital, and they are. However, human capital doesn't just consist of the skills and knowledge they can apply to economic activity. It also includes one's ability to contribute to society. Just look at the list of social benefits--"lower incarceration and obesity rates to higher levels of civic engagement and volunteerism"--for examples.

Two more articles about the detritmental health effects of overpopulation combined with urbanization and climate change behind the cut. )

See what you're missing if 1) you're not reading Crazy Eddie's Motie News and/or 2) I'm not crossposting articles to Dreamwidth and LiveJournal?

Speaking of which, I ran a poll on my LJ for which posts from the past week on Crazy Eddie's Motie News I should repost on my personal journals. Right now, it's a three-way tie among Transformation Detroit, when Business as Usual attempts sustainability, Gas prices drop for a second week in Metro Detroit, and Kroger in Royal Oak, the videos. I'll be posting them after midnight as "fan" posts. If you want me to post more, go over to the poll and vote.  I'll comply.

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