In these pre-dog days of pre-summer, the days are getting longer, and to me anyway, the nights are also getting longer — I suffer from a mild dose of insomnia on occasion, a pain in the ass that effects the eyes and head.
And the environment continues to suffer a kind of insomniac problem, too — the air of ambiance never sleeps while it persists in its deepening shift from normalcy.
(Illustration found here).
A couple of news stories popped up over the weekend that foretell the horror coming from a delusional planet seeking energy in the face of events beyond imagination.
The first concerns the nasty world of hydraulic fracturing (or ‘fracking’), a process explained by the US EPA as a well stimulation process used to maximize the extraction of underground resources; including oil, natural gas, geothermal energy, and even water.
This ‘stimulation process‘ is a bitch — a bigger slut-whore than Rush Limbaugh.
In this ‘process,’ chemical-laced water and sand are blasted underground to break apart rock and release gas, which sounds simple enough, but the whole operations is dangerous as dog shit.
One problem is that fracking destroys water tables (the EPA last November found chemicals used in fracking in a Wyoming aquifer) — methane can be released and could pollute drinking water — and the process has been found to cause minor earthquakes, as those in Arkansas last year.
Read ProPublica‘s series on fracking here for more detailed information.
Also see a diagrammed explanation of the dangers of fracking here.
The sand used in fracking was the subject of a horror story this past weekend at Tomdispatch — a must-read on a near-unknown piece of climate change bullshit.
The drive to get frac-sand, as it’s called, can waste-away entire neighborhoods, and even whole states.
Ellen Cantarow details how this has played out in Wisconsin.
Five hundred million years ago, an ocean surged here, shaping a unique wealth of hills and bluffs that, under mantles of greenery and trees, are sandstone.
That sandstone contains a particularly pure form of crystalline silica.
Its grains, perfectly rounded, are strong enough to resist the extreme pressures of the technology called hydraulic fracturing, which pumps vast quantities of that sand, as well as water and chemicals, into ancient shale formations to force out methane and other forms of â€œnatural gas.â€
That sand, which props open fractures in the shale, has to come from somewhere.
Without it, the fracking industry would grind to a halt.
So big multinational corporations are descending on this bucolic region to cart off its prehistoric sand, which will later be forcefully injected into the earth elsewhere across the country to produce more natural gas.
Geology that has taken millions of years to form is now being transformed into part of a system, a machine, helping to drive global climate change.
Frac-sand corporations count on a combination of naÃ¯vetÃ©, trust, and incomprehension in rural hamlets that previously dealt with companies no larger than Wisconsinâ€™s local sand and gravel industries.
Before 2008, town boards had never handled anything beyond road maintenance and other basic municipal issues.
Today, multinational corporations use their considerable resources to steamroll local councils and win sweetheart deals.
Thatâ€™s how the residents of Tunnel City got taken to the cleaners.
Food or frac-sand: itâ€™s a decision of vital importance across the country, but one most Americans donâ€™t even realize is being made — largely by multinational corporations and dwindling numbers of yeoman farmers in what some in this country would call â€œthe real America.â€
Most of us know nothing about these choices, but if the mining corporations have their way, we will soon enough — when we check out prices at the supermarket or grocery store.
Weâ€™ll know it too, as global climate change continues to turn Wisconsin winters balmy and supercharge wild weather across the country.
As I said, read the whole post — it’s a horror story that most of US peoples haven’t even heard of, and could becoming to a sand pile near you.
And the other bad news on the climate front is more or less an update — there’s already data on methane seeping out of the thawing Arctic permafrost, which if continues will accelerate global warming.
Methane is bad: Even though it occurs in lower concentrations than carbon dioxide, it produces 21 times as much warming as CO2. Methane accounts for 20 percent of the ‘enhanced greenhouse effect’.
Melting Arctic permafrost could put even more methane — a potent greenhouse gas — into the atmosphere than previously thought, with worrying implications for the pace of global warming.
Many ice sheets that sit like caps over rock crevices trap natural seeps of methane; when they melt, the gas can quickly be released into the atmosphere in “burps.”
Geologists have long suspected that iced-over geological structures might entrap vast stores of ancient methane that seep from coal and gas deposits, although no one knows exactly how much is there.
The team estimate that Alaska is emitting 50 to 70 per cent more methane into the atmosphere than previously thought. Geological records indicate that the model would also apply to deep methane stores in Canada and Siberia, currently covered by ice.
And from the UK’s Daily Mail:
A Russian research ship recently made a terrifying discovery — huge plumes of methane bubbles rising to the surface from the seabed.
‘We found more than 100 fountains, some more than a kilometre across,’ said Dr Igor Semiletov,
‘These are methane fields on a scale not seen before. The emissions went directly into the atmosphere.’
Not pretty by anyone’s gaze.
Except, of course, the delusional types who deny it all — just normal earth-like systems.
Not only do we have the immense problems of climate change, but we have to fight through the horror of right-wing, bat-shit crazy Republicans, who will go down and pull all of us with them for the sake of big money.
One example is the Web site from where the above cartoon was found — a climate denial site where the savage beating of reality takes place — via the final sentence in this particular post: Environmentalism should be soundly rejected and the emerging movement to overthrow it should redouble its efforts.
If ugly, nit-twited shit like that continues, and that ‘emerging movement‘ succeeds, the earth is f*ucked.
Massive Republican asshole Congressman Jim Sensenbrenner has blubbered in a speech at the Heartland Institute where humanity actually does sit — at death’s door.
Sensenbrenner is a climate zombie, who believes global warming an â€œinternational conspiracy.â€
Via Climate Progress:
Sensenbrenner ended his speech with an appropriate anecodote.
He referenced New York Times Columnist Paul Krugman, who wrote in a 2009 column that climate deniers were practicing â€œtreason against the planet.â€
â€œMr. Krugman, I plead guilty as charged,â€ boasted Sensenbrenner — a politician who helps oversee one of the most important scientific committees in Congress.
The crowd burst into gleeful laughter.
Sensenbrenner also assured the crowd that Mitt Romney would not take action on global warming.
When asked by an attendee who said he was â€œscared to deathâ€ that Romney would change his stance on man-made global warming and support renewable energy, Sensenbrenner replied, “I donâ€™t think thatâ€™s true. I talked to Romney before the Wisconsin primary.â€
Couple that way-ugly shit with this most-depressing and terrible news:
Top Republicans, long privately skeptical about their presidential prospects, are coming around to a surprising new view â€” that Mitt Romney may well win the White House this November.
A slew of polls recently released by The New York Times/CBS, Washington Post/ABC, Wall Street Journal/NBC and Gallup show a tight race, with neither candidate up by more than 5 points.
But what gives Republicans confidence is the continued concern expressed in the surveys about Obamaâ€™s stewardship of the economy and a sense that the country is headed in the wrong direction.
â€œIt feels like from a GOP point of view weâ€™ve nominated the right guy,â€ said Rep. Peter Roskam (R-Ill.), the chief deputy whip.
“He is a non-scary conservative. Heâ€™s able to speak to suburban Chicago, suburban Denver, suburban St. Louis.â€
Roskam, who along with GOP Whip Kevin McCarthy is in hourly contact with his fellow House Republicans, said the mood in the caucus was â€œhappy talk four or five months agoâ€ and now, â€œitâ€™s â€˜Wow this can happen.â€™â€
And, boys and girls, if this does happen, someÂ real-bad you-know-what will hit the old fan.
I shit thee not.