Geologists uncover Antarctica’s fossil forests

“Prehistoric polar forests were built for survival, but were not hardy enough to live in ultra-high concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide. A geologist is studying the tree fossil record in Antarctica from a mass extinction 250 million years ago, looking for clues to how greenhouse gases affected plants — then and now.”

By the trip’s end, the geologists had found fossil fragments of 13 trees. The discovered fossils reveal that the trees are over 260 million years old, meaning that this forest grew at the end of the Permian Period, before the first dinosaurs.

“People have known about the fossils in Antarctica since the 1910-12 Robert Falcon Scott expedition,” said Gulbranson, a paleoecologist and visiting assistant professor in UWM’s Department of Geosciences. “However, most of Antarctica is still unexplored. Sometimes, you might be the first person to ever climb a particular mountain.”

Learn More – University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee- Erik Gulbranson,

Featured Course – Restoring Urban Ecosystems

“The geologic record shows us the beginning, middle and end of climate change events,” Gulbranson said. “With further study, we can better understand how greenhouse gases and climate change affect life on Earth.”   (Question- Does his statement put the cart before the horse?)

 

Earth’s Magnetic Poles Swapping ??

“The Earth’s magnetic field surrounds our planet like an invisible force field – protecting life from harmful solar radiation by deflecting charged particles away. Far from being constant, this field is continuously changing. Indeed, our planet’s history includes at least several hundred global magnetic reversals, where north and south magnetic poles swap places. So when’s the next one happening and how will it affect life on Earth?

During a reversal the magnetic field won’t be zero, but will assume a weaker and more complex form. It may fall to 10% of the present-day strength and have magnetic poles at the equator or even the simultaneous existence of multiple “north” and “south” magnetic poles.

Geomagnetic reversals occur a few times every million years on average. However, the interval between reversals is very irregular and can range up to tens of millions of years.

There can also be temporary and incomplete reversals, known as events and excursions, in which the magnetic poles move away from the geographic poles – perhaps even crossing the equator – before returning back to their original locations. The last full reversal, the Brunhes-Matuyama, occurred around 780,000 years ago. A temporary reversal, the Laschamp event, occurred around 41,000 years ago. It lasted less than 1,000 years with the actual change of polarity lasting around 250 years.

Power cut or mass extinction?  (Read More)

For the climate group – “The difficulties of predicting the weather beyond a few days are widely known, despite us living within and directly observing the atmosphere. Yet predicting the Earth’s core is a far more difficult prospect, principally because it is buried beneath 3,000km of rock such that our observations are scant and indirect”

Training Profile – “Tracking Carbon“?

National Pipeline Mapping System – National Gas and other Hazardous Liquids Pipeline

The U.S. Department of Transportation offers the public access to their National Pipeline Mapping System via a free online, interactive map and an iPhone app.  It displays general information for pipelines carrying gas and hazardous liquids, liquefied natural gas plants, and breakout tanks within a county-wide zone.

While the mapping system is not to be used as a precise identifier of pipelines in a location, the public can access general knowledge about potential sources of contamination in their area.  By turning on the visual indicators for accidents and incidents in the area, it’s possible to judge remediation efforts based on past events.  Watershed organizations can submit a data request report or find the companies that are operating pipelines in your area.  The system is also a useful tool for community outreach and education efforts, whether you’re simply identifying topics for public forums and workshops or looking critically at local remediation efforts.

Featured Training Program

Fracking Environmental Consequences

Waste-to-Energy Workshop- Small Scale Digesters and Combined Heat and Power

Featured Link: Training Professionals for the Energy Sector.

Waste-to-Energy Workshop: Improving the Feasibility of Small-Scale Digesters and CHP

This event will take place at West Chester University of Pennsylvania on December 1st, 2017 at 10 am. It will focus on the emerging market of small-scale organic waste-to-energy systems for campuses and facilities, food processors, and breweries, as well as small farms and wastewater treatment plants. The event is free and open to those in related industries or academic studies. A discussion and networking luncheon will follow the seminar.

Speakers will include Dr. John Pisciotta of the Pisciotta Lab at West Chester University who has developed microbially-based platforms for bioremediation of waste streams into fuels and useful products. Ken Smith of SeaB Energy, which produces modular digesters, and Jill Santos and Dan Sodomsky of Duryea Technologies, a manufacturer of brushless motors and gen sets for biogas applications, will present new commercial technologies for small-scale waste-to-energy.

For additional details, directions and to RSVP, please visit wcuwastetoenergy.eventbrite.com.

Contact:
Julien Sherwood
Event Organizer
Student, Department of Political Science
West Chester University

js829466@wcupa.edu

205 Ruby Jones Hall
50 University Avenue
West Chester, PA 19383

Putting the Words Timely and Geology Together with Climate

“Sedimentary layers record the history of Earth. They contain stratigraphic cycles and patterns that precisely reveal the succession of climatic and tectonic conditions that have occurred over millennia, thereby enhancing our ability to understand and predict the evolution of our planet. Researchers at the University of Geneva (UNIGE), Switzerland, — together with colleagues at the University of Lausanne (UNIL) and American and Spanish scientists — have been working on an analytical method that combines observing deep-water sedimentary strata and measuring in them the isotopic ratio between heavy and light carbon. They have discovered that the cycles that punctuate these sedimentary successions are not, as one might think, due solely to the erosion of mountains that surround the basin, but are more ascribable to sea level changes.  This research, which you can read in the journal Geology, paves the way for new uses of isotopic methods in exploration geology.”

Read More at  “Sea level as a metronome of Earth’s history

Different Perspective on Climate (Climate Science News)

Recommended Book – “The Beaches are Moving

Scare Pollution Why and How to Fix the EPA by Steve Milloy

Scare Pollution Why and How to Fix the EPA   

(Note: if you are a student or fact based professional or an environmental advocate (science based) – we recommend you read this book because it is clear the process of making and developing environmental regulations has moved away from the scientific method.  If you are a social justice warrior or an organizer or advocate, we also recommend reading this book, because if you really want to be an honest broker you should be open minded and get the facts.)

What is Scare Pollution about? Scare Pollution reveals the shockingly fraudulent science behind EPA’s flagship regulatory program which has been used to destroy the coal industry, justify global warming rules, and assert EPA’s control over our fossil fuel-dependent economy. Author Steve Milloy’s exposé tells the story of how he uncovered the fraud via his investigative journalism, original scientific research and revealing interactions with EPA, Congress, federal courts and green activists.

What is Scare Pollution’s main theme? EPA’s economy-destroying rules depend on the false claim that particulate matter (i.e. soot from smokestacks and tailpipes) is so toxic it kills 570,000 Americans per year. EPA claims even brief exposures to typical outdoor levels in the U.S. can kill almost instantly. Milloy thoroughly debunks this claim in multiple and creative ways ⎯ thereby clearly revealing the outrageous and costly fraud EPA has perpetrated on Americans.

What’s timely about Scare Pollution? President-elect Trump promised to rein in the out-of-control EPA. Scare Pollution shows just how out-of-control EPA is and offers a road map for reforming the agency.

What are some of Scare Pollution’s highlights?

Milloy Uncovers EPA’s Illegal Human Experiments – After EPA falsely claimed before Congress that inhaling even tiny amounts of soot was deadly, the agency sought to justify those outrageous claims with illegal experiments on elderly and sick subjects making them inhale diesel exhaust in an “exposure chamber.” EPA even experimented on 10-year old children with diesel exhaust.

The Exposure of EPA’s Secret Science – To avoid scrutiny of its false claims, EPA hid scientific data for more than 20 years – despite numerous demands from Congress including by subpoena and bills passed. Scare Pollution shows how Milloy discovered a treasure trove of data and led a team of scientific researchers to debunk EPA’s claims with new data.

Finally, a Much-Awaited Explanation of the Likely Cause of Historical Episodes of ‘Killer’ Air Pollution. EPA often cites fatal historical air pollution incidents to needlessly alarm the public about current air quality. Milloy finally debunks these claims with convincing analysis pointing to the likely actual culprit(s).

Who endorses Scare Pollution?

“As a leader in the fight to protect our environment and public health for nearly three decades, I am keenly aware of the scientific shortcomings of EPA’s agenda-driven air regulations that impose significant costs on our economy while yielding no meaningful benefits. Scare Pollution provides great insight into these problems and contributes to a timely discussion for how to reform the EPA.”
– Sen. James M. Inhofe (R-Okla.), Chairman, Committee on Environment and Public Works

“Twenty years ago, I chaired the committee of independent science advisors reviewing EPA’s determination that fine particulate matter causes mortality at concentrations commonly experienced in outdoor air in the US. Most of the advisors doubted the EPA’s finding for a number of reasons including the lack of a plausible biological mechanism, but the agency set stringent standards anyway. Scare Pollution confirms the committee’s original doubts in unique and compelling ways, and indicates that EPA’s human exposure scientists do not believe the Agency’s determination either. It’s a must read for those interested in how science is used at the EPA.”

– Dr. George T. Wolff, former Chairman of the EPA Clean Air Scientific Advisory Committee.

Notes (From Brian Oram):

1. I am in the middle of reading this book  (Scare Pollution, 2016) – I was shocked.  My entry into Environmental Education and Earth Sciences included reading books like: “The Beaches are Moving”, “A Sand County Almanac”, “Silent Spring”, “Love Canal”, “Environmental Law” and  “Our Stolen Future”.

2. After going through the hysteria associated with global cooling and calls for quick action in the 1970s and 1980s, it seems that emotions and not science and logic were taking hold.  Then in the 1990s, I started to see the rise of the environmental or social justice movement and began to see science being used more as a political tool than a fact-based tool.  There also appeared to be a rise in the application of environmental issues to some of the”softer” sciences, such as: sociology.

3. By 2000, I was near the peak of my professional career and it was clear environmental regulations were becoming less based on science and facts, but based on court cases and settlements by environmental advocacy groups.   I have been an advocate for science and fact based regulations, not what seems corrected or fair.  It is about facts, not fear and we make positive change through honest debate based on facts and we do not make environmental laws or economic decisions based on a hypothesis.

4. In 2009 to current, I have actively tried to be a fact based professional and scientist, but it is clear the problem has been a verbal and media assault on science and the facts and in many cases we no longer have active debate, discussion, and the scientific method is operating in reverese.   This condition can be easily seen by reviewing the hysteria associated with natural gas development, land development  (Clean Stream Regulations), erosion and sedimentation control (riparian buffer zones),  climate change, and suggestions by some state regulators that the fact that something was peer reviewed means it is correct and can be used to write laws.

5. Very sad to say that I think the social justice warrior and voice may be winning, I only hope that the scientific method stays the foundation of how we make decisions as a community.   Do not let the 12 Monkeys Win !   My first attempt at this fight was in 2016 April as part of  Keystone College National Public Health Week.    Local Article on the Presentation – “Social media hype can turn misleading stories into needless widespread panic, he said.”

I have never recommended a book to read – this is the first, but I strongly recommend “Scare Pollution“, 2016.

I also like “Human Caused Global Warming”, but I really wish the author hired and used an editor.

Webinars Natural Gas – Disposal Pit Emissions and the Link Between Wind and Natural Gas

Upper Green River Basin Disposal Pit Emission Study
When: August 25, 2016 | 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EST
Where: Webinar

Richard L. Bowers, P.E., BCEE, GSI Environmental will discuss the air quality study of large produced water disposal ponds, part of the Wyoming Dept. of Environmental Quality Air Quality Division’s Upper Green River Basin Ozone Strategy. The goal of the study is to develop a method for accurately characterizing disposal pond air emissions using water samples.

Wind & Natural Gas as Energy Partners
When: September 15, 2016 | 1:00 – 2:00 p.m. EST
Where: Webinar

Dr. Michael C. Slattery, Professor, Director of the Institute for Environmental Studies, Texas Christian University, will discuss the environmental impacts of wind and natural gas, and how they can compliment each other as energy sources.

Other Educational Opportunities in Environment and Energy

Self- Help
Education2Go and the Udemy – Education Programs – over 30,000 courses

Forestry Training and Tree Planting Grants in Pennsylvania PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

TreeVitalize state-wide 2017 grant applications available

The Pennsylvania Urban & Community Forestry Council has secured funding for tree planting grants and innovative projects grants throughout the state through our partnership with the PA Department of Conservation and Natural Resources.

Tree planting grants will be available to Pennsylvania municipalities and non-profit agencies throughout the state for projects related to tree plantings with a strong volunteer base. Applicants are required to have the assistance of their local service forester and/or Penn State extension forester in developing a planting plan. Interested applicants should begin by contacting their local DCNR service forester or Penn State Extension Forester and include them in any conversations concerning proposed tree plantings. Those foresters can provide necessary guidance pertaining to grant opportunities as well as native species and sustainable projects. Applications are due September 30, 2016. Notifications will be posted by November 1st with grant terms to include January 1, 2017 – December 31, 2017.

For more information, or for a copy of the grant application, please contact Jessica Cavey, Development and Grants Coordinator, at (717) 599-8650 or c-jcavey@pa.gov.

Tree Tenders on-site classes
Join thousands of other concerned citizens like yourself. Become a Tree Tender and help increase tree canopy cover in your community. Tree Tenders® is a training program that empowers concerned residents to make dramatic strides towards restoring and caring for the tree canopy in their communities. The course is designed for lay people and experts alike. Become one of the Tree Tenders restoring and tending your part of the forest. Instruction is provided by DCNR’s Bureau of Forestry, in partnership with Penn State Extension, PHS, and other local urban forestry experts.

Tree Tenders training includes: Tree Biology, Urban Stresses on Trees, Tree Identification,Tree Pruning and Root Care, Tree Planting Techniques, Community Organizing

Upcoming classes offered by Pennsylvania Horticultural Society:

September 21, 28, and October 5 – Philadelphia, PA – 5:45 PM to 9 PM

September 22, 29, and October 6 – New Hope, PA – 5:45 PM to 9 PM

September 28 and October 5 and 19 – Haverford, PA – 5:45 PM to 9 PM

 

Register online at http://phsonline.org/programs/tree-tenders

Stay tuned for next month’s email for dates and locations of other Tree Tenders classes around Pennsylvania this fall.

 

Managing Invasive Plants

August 19, 2016, 8:30 AM to 3 PM

Williamsport, PA

Invasive weeds and pests are a major threat to our natural and cultivated landscapes, spreading quickly and displacing or killing native plants. The Managing Invasive Plants program will provide participants with the knowledge and skills to properly identify invasive plants and develop strategies for treatment and control. Topics discussed will include invasive species identification, invasive plant control, and herbicide application methods, equipment, and safety. A morning classroom session will be followed by an afternoon field demonstration.

 

PDA pesticide applicators update credits will be offered: Category 05 (4 credits), Category 06 (4 credits), Category 10 (4 credits), Category 23 (4 credits), Core (4 Credits)

ost: $35

Online registration is available at http://extension.psu.edu/invasive-plants

For more information, contact Vincent Cotrone at (570) 825-1701 or vjc1@psu.edu.

 

2016 Tree Canopy Conference: Preserving Trees in Our Communities

October 13, 2016, 9 AM to 5 PM

Haverford College, Stokes Hall Auditorium

Why is Tree Canopy So Important? A healthy tree canopy provides important ecosystem services including air pollution removal, storm water runoff reduction, and energy conservation. Tree canopy provides habitat for wildlife, and also has a positive impact on human wellbeing, community cohesion, and economic stimuli. In this conference, we will look at tree canopy preservation and reduction, and consider some of the greatest threats communities are facing as they try to preserve canopy cover.

Featured Speakers:

  • Joseph Townsend, University of Delaware – The important benefits of trees in the urban environment
  • Jason Henning, USDA Forest Service – Computerized tools, like iTree, to measure canopy cover
  • Scott Wade, Longwood Gardens – Pennsylvania Champion Trees

Cost: $125 (includes lunch and break refreshments)

Continuing Education Units: This conference carries CEUs for ISA certified arborists and PA landscape architects.

Register online at https://online.morrisarboretum.org/canopy

For more information or to register by phone, call the Morris Arboretum Education Department at (215) 247-5777.

This conference sponsored by Morris Arboretum School of Arboriculture and Haverford College Arboretum. Co- Sponsored by John E. Ward & Company Tree Experts.

Brian Wolyniak

Extension Urban Forester

Email: bjw229@psu.edu

(412) 482-3455

The Penn State Center – Pittsburgh

Extension and Outreach

1435 Bedford Avenue, Suite A

Pittsburgh, PA 15219

Julianne Schieffer

Extension Urban Forester

Email: jxs51@psu.edu

(610) 489-4315

Penn State Ecosystem Science &

Management

1015 Bridge Rd

Collegeville PA 19426

More Training Courses in Water Resources and Ecology.

Green Gangsters Rip Off While Enriching Themselves ? (Sounds like a “Hillary’s America Movie”)

Gangsters has been a common theme in this election cycle. Cruz mentioned, Movie Creator used to describe a candidate (Hillary’s America), and media used to question the ethics of another candidate, but applied to alternative energy seems interesting.   I do not normally link to this site, but for this article I will.

Mary Kay Barton
Silver Lake, NY – Retired Health Educator and Small Business Owner

Wind energy subsidies are financing green gangster projects intended to enrich the 0.1% at the expense of ratepayers and taxpayers. A recent Joe Mahoney article, “NY looks to the wind to replace its fossil fuel diet,” was full of half-truths and misinformation. There is nothing “free,” “clean” or “green” about industrial wind. Quite the contrary: the true costs of industrial wind development are astronomical. Yet, the wishful thinking of Governor Andrew Cuomo, Attorney General Eric Schneiderman, “green” ideologues, and “renewable” energy hustlers and subsidy seekers who benefit from this massive taxpayer and ratepayer rip-off has been repeated by countless “journalists” without question for years now.   (Link to the Article)

Chart 1 – Cost per Energy Outputcost_graph2

Chart Makes me think that running a car on electricity or natural gas (LNG) may be advisable.

Chart 2- Cost

levelized-cost-electricity-technologies

Clearly shows that on a cost basis – onshore wind and offshore wind becoming more viable.  Solar still very expensive.

 

Personal Note:
Please note – I did see Hillary’s America.  I did enjoy the movie.  Learned a lot about the history of the United States and the two party system.  I would recommend seeing the movie.

Webinar Identifying Urban and Industrial GHG Sources Using Continuous d13C Observations

Atmospheric carbon dioxide (CO2) and methane (CH4) come from a variety of natural and anthropogenic sources and have a powerful global warming impact.  Understanding the magnitude and distribution of these emissions spatially and temporally is critical to evaluating present and future climate impacts. Stable isotope signatures of methane and carbon dioxide are often employed to investigate the relative importance of various sources (and sinks).

Picarro invites you to a webinar on Identifying Urban and Industrial GHG Sources Using Continuous d13C Observations. This live webinar, featuring Felix Vogel (Researcher, LSCE) and David Kim-Hak (Product Manager, Picarro), will focus on GHG source identification. Felix will share his experiences in monitoring atmospheric carbon dioxide and methane concentrations and stable isotopes. David will present information about how Picarro technology has enabled continuous and in-situ measurements of stable isotopes, including providing information on the Picarro G2201-i for best-in-class greenhouse gas (GHG) concentration and isotopic measurements. If you are interested in learning about urban and industrial GHG source identification, this is the webinar for you!

Picarro Live Webinar:
Identifying Urban and Industrial GHG Sources Using Continuous d13C Observations
Register
Tuesday, July 12, 2016

Other Training Courses

Sustainability Issues

Watershed Management – Stream Ecology-Wetlands

Fracking- Hydraulic Fracturing