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- You’re entitled to your own opinion, but not your own facts;
- An educated electorate is a prerequisite for a democracy.
Amendment I. Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the government for a redress of grievances. ~ First Amendment | Constitution | US Law | LII / Legal Information Institute [https://www.law.cornell.edu/constitution/first_amendment]
- Make sure you are registered to vote:
- HarrisVotes.com (Election Information Line (713) 755-6965)
- Next Election: August 25, 2018 – Harris County Flood Control District Bond Election
- Be sure to early-vote when polling places and hours are announced
- Election Day polls are open from 7 a.m. to 7 p.m.
- You may vote early by-mail if you are registered to vote and meet one of the following criteria:
- Away from the county of residence on Election Day and during the early voting period;
- Sick or disabled;
- 65 years of age or older on Election Day;
- or Confined in jail, but eligible to vote.
- The Daily 202: Puerto Ricans who fled to Florida after Hurricane Maria are not registering to vote, By James Hohmann [WASHINGTON POST] July 27, 2018 Email the author With Breanne Deppisch and Joanie Greve
- … Hurricane Maria ravaged Puerto Rico last September and prompted a mass exodus of more than 100,000 residents to the mainland United States. …
- … The exact number is still not known, but tens of thousands of people permanently resettled in Florida. …
- …Because they’re already U.S. citizens, Puerto Ricans are eligible to vote as soon as they move to the mainland. The thinking last fall was that they’d be so angry at Trump that they’d be champing at the bit to vote against Republicans in the midterms. Operatives from both parties said that this could prove decisive in a perennial battleground like Florida where elections are always close. …
- … The freshest data reveals that there has been no surge in new Puerto Rican voters. During the nine months before the hurricane — January through September of 2017 — there were 343,000 people who registered to vote in Florida, and 18 percent were Hispanic, according to Daniel Smith, the chairman of the political science department at the University of Florida. During the nine months after the hurricane — from last October through the end of June — there were 326,000 new registered voters. Just 21 percent were Hispanic. That’s a pretty small uptick — and not necessarily explained by Puerto Rican registration at all.
- The Puerto Ricans emigres have mostly gravitated toward the Orlando area, mainly because so many other Puerto Ricans already lived there. The number of people of Puerto Rican origin living in Florida surpassed 1 million in 2015, which is more than double what it was in 2000.
- Steve Schale, a Tallahassee-based Democratic strategist who directed Barack Obama’s 2008 victory in Florida and was a senior adviser on his 2012 reelection campaign, has been closely tracking these numbers in Excel spreadsheets, which he shared Thursday.
- “The concern I’ve had for a while is that … the Maria impact was probably not going to be as significant as people initially thought,” he said. “We’ve got two-and-a-half months left for voter registration. But these numbers show it’s not going to happen organically. … This is a warning flare that there’s real work to be done. … Dems need to be registering around the clock, which they clearly aren’t doing.”
- RACIST POLICE BRUTALITY:
- Newly Released Body Camera Footage Shows Minneapolis Police Gunning Down Fleeing Black Man, By Breanna Edwards |com | 7-30-2018 Today 9:03am
- Minneapolis police have released body camera footage from two officers involved in the fatal shooting of 31-year-old Thurman Blevins — showing Blevins being shot in the back after fleeing from police.
- The video, which was released on Sunday, shows Officers Justin Schmidt and Ryan Kelly pulling their cruiser up to Blevins, who was seated on a curb near a woman with a child in a stroller. The officers were in the area responding to a 911 about a man firing a gun in the air on June 23, 2018 – June 23, the Associated Press notes. [VIDEO – BODY CAM]
- As the officers pull up, one can be heard urgently claiming “he’s got a gun!” At that point, Blevins starts to run away from the officers (the full raw footage from the body cameras can be found here). …
- … Less than a minute into the chase, Schmidt started shooting and Blevins goes down. As the officers get closer, what appears to be a small handgun can be seen lying on the ground next to Blevin’s hand. Minneapolis has released an “enhanced” version of the footage, where they circled the gun that Blevins was carrying at the time of the shooting.
- The gun that Blevins was apparently carrying at the time has been the source of contention. Police have maintained that he was armed during the encounter, whereas some witnesses have insisted he didn’t have a weapon.
- Blevins was shot multiple times. Both officers fired their weapons.
- Blevins’ cousin, Sydnee Brown, told the Star Tribune that the video shows that Blevins was not a threat to police. … “Officers Ryan Kelly and Justin Schmidt should be fired without pay and prosecuted to the full extent of the law,” she added, according to KSTP. …
- … Schmidt’s lawyer, Kevin Short, saw something else from the video.
- “It’s gratifying to know the actions of the officers were justified. Hopefully, the public learned a lesson to wait for all the facts and video to come out before vilifying officers,” he told KSTP.
- Minneapolis Mayor Jacob Frey has declined to offer any official comment on the videos, but acknowledged that the footage was “traumatic.”
- A Mississippi Police Officer Gets Fired for Using a Stun Gun on a Handcuffed Suspect – Meridian Police Chief Benny Dubose has released a dashcam video showing ex-officer Daniel Starks’ misconduct, By Zuri Davis | REASON.com | Jul. 27, 2018 10:20 am
- A Mississippi police officer has been fired after a dashcam video showed him using excessive force on a suspect who was already handcuffed and kneeling on the ground.
- The video, recorded on July 16, begins with an unidentified officer approaching a van, which WTOP reports was being driven by a man suspected of shoplifting. The van moves a few feet before the officer draws his gun and gets the driver out of the vehicle.
- Police Chief Benny Dubose … says that drawing the gun was justified. It’s what happens next that wasn’t.
- After the first officer successfully handcuffs the suspect, other officers arrive on the scene. One of them, Daniel Starks, takes it upon himself to rough up the suspect. (The suspect is not resisting at the time Starks does this.) The men appear to exchange words, and this prompts Starks to rough up the suspect a second time. Then he draws his stun gun and shoots the suspect in the neck [with the stun gun] without apparent cause.
- As Police Captain John Griffith later explained, the fact that he used a tactic known as a “drive-stun”—this is when the device is used while pressed against the target’s skin—is significant as it is known to cause more centralized pain.
- Starks walks away after the man falls to the ground. Other officers help the suspect get back up. Starks returns and applies pressure on the man’s neck, a tactic reportedly used to force suspects to stand. When it doesn’t work, Starks pulls out his stun gun and threatens to stun him a second time. The man then struggles to get back up and later falls to the ground once again.
- Starks was initially punished by being suspended without pay, but this week he was fired. His termination came just a week and a half following the incident. It is not immediately clear if Starks will face criminal charges for his actions.
- New York Finally Gets Around to Maybe Holding Police Officers Responsible for Eric Garner’s Killing – Four years later, they might actually fire somebody. BY Scott Shackford | REASON.com |Jul. 20, 2018 1:05 pm
- Garner’s unnecessary and avoidable death inspired outrage, but so far there have been few consequences for the cops involved. The Department of Justice has been investigating whether the police violated Garner’s civil rights. Because of the federal investigation, the city refrained from moving forward with its own disciplinary proceedings against the officers involved.
- But yesterday, after the Department of Justice said it didn’t object to the city moving on the issue, the New York Police Department (NYPD) announced that Officer Daniel Pantaleo, responsible for the deadly chokehold, and Sgt. Kizzy Adonis, his supervisor, will face an administrative trial next year
- NYPD critics and Garner’s family are upset that the city waited years to do anything. Whatever the Justice Department decides to do should have no bearing on whether the NYPD continues to employ these officers. If the Justice Department charges them, then it charges them. That has nothing to do with whether they should keep their jobs.
- When The New York Post asked New York Mayor Bill de Blasio about this, he claimed that when other cities have quickly fired misbehaving police, the incidents were “exceedingly clear.” He added, “I think, each one has to be looked at in its own individuality, because sometimes there’s a situation where there’s not a lot of doubt.”…
- … It’s not clear whether the public will learn the outcome of the internal trial. New York State has some the country’s worst transparency rules when it comes to police conduct, including laws that conceal the contents of disciplinary records. Pantaleo’s history as an officer was being kept secret, but information was leaked last year to ThinkProgress that showed he had a history of bad behavior. New York’s Civilian Complaint Review Board has recommended that Pantaleo be fired for Garner’s death.
- A grand jury previously declined to indict Pantaleo for Garner’s death. This administrative trial is all about whether he’ll keep his job, not whether he’ll go to jail.
- Newly Released Body Camera Footage Shows Minneapolis Police Gunning Down Fleeing Black Man, By Breanna Edwards |com | 7-30-2018 Today 9:03am
- Giuliani says he’s not sure collusion is a crime despite Mueller investigation, By Maegan Vazquez, CNN, Updated 12:14 PM ET, Mon July 30, 2018
- Washington (CNN)President Donald Trump’s lawyer, Rudy Giuliani, said Monday that he’s not sure collusion with Russia would be considered a crime.
- But legal experts have repeatedly said that anyone found collaborating with Russia on the 2016 election could be charged with other crimes, such as conspiracy — and special counsel Robert Mueller’s investigation is ongoing. …
- Trump’s fight against ‘unpatriotic’ media intensifies, by Naomi Lim [washingtonexaminer.com] | July 29, 2018 09:15 PM
- President Trump’s relationship with the press hit a new low after the president unleashed a multi-tweet frenzy Sunday accusing the “unpatriotic” mainstream media of endangering American lives by generating negative coverage on the mechanics of the Trump administration.
- “When the media — driven insane by their Trump Derangement Syndrome — reveals internal deliberations of our government, it truly puts the lives of many, not just journalists, at risk! Very unpatriotic!” Trump wrote on Twitter. “Freedom of the press also comes with a responsibility to report the news… accurately.”
- Trump’s refusal to dispense with his “enemy of the people” epithet for reporters, used in greater frequency since a February 2017 tweet and his Conservative Political Action Conference speech a couple of days later, capped a week of high drama between the Washington press corps and a combative presidential protagonist
- New York Times publisher Arthur Gregg Sulzberger was quick to push back on Trump’s description Sunday morning of a supposedly off-the-record July 20 meeting, which touched on the sensitive topic.
- “Had a very good and interesting meeting at the White House with A.G. Sulzberger, Publisher of the New York Times,” Trump wrote. “Spent much time talking about the vast amounts of Fake News being put out by the media & how that Fake News has morphed into phrase, ‘Enemy of the People.’ Sad!” …
- Despite widespread protests to Trump’s rhetoric, his sentiment is gaining growing traction among his grassroots constituency.
- … In the CBS News 2018 Battleground Tracker, conducted with YouGov, the majority of 2,420 U.S. adults surveyed between July 26 and July 28 did not have much confidence in “the media.” By way of comparison, about a third of respondents told researchers they did not trust the FBI, another favorite target of Trump’s.
- Fake news ‘crowding out’ real news, [UK] MPs say, com | 29 July 2018
- The volume of disinformation on the internet is growing so big that it is starting to crowd out real news, the Commons Digital, Culture, Media and Sport Committee chairman has said.
- Tory MP Damian Collins said people struggle to identify “fake news”.
- MPs in their committee report said the issue threatens democracy and called for tougher social network regulation.
- The government said it plans to introduce a requirement for electoral adverts to have a “digital imprint”.
- This would mean that all political communications carried online would need to clearly identify who they were published by. …
- [MIKE: The article is much longer and more detailed]
- Trump’s ‘emoluments’ battle: How a scholar’s search of 200 years of dictionaries helped win a historic ruling, by Fred Barbash July 27 at 10:31 AM Email the author
- … John Mikhail, a law professor with a PhD in philosophy and associate dean at the Georgetown University Law School … went to dictionaries available to the framers of the Constitution in 1787, which is what litigants do when trying to figure out what the Founding Fathers meant.
- With the aid of a Georgetown law student, Genevieve Bentz, he embarked on a lexicological odyssey into dozens of long-forgotten dictionaries, published over a 200-year period before 1806, 40 regular dictionaries and 10 legal dictionaries, listed here.
- The research yielded a very different, much broader definition than that put forward by Trump’s lawyers. “Every English dictionary definition of ’emolument’ from 1604 to 1806″ uses a “broad definition,” including “profit,” “advantage,” “gain,” or benefit,” he wrote in his paper describing the research.
- As to the “office-and-employment-specific” interpretation by Trump’s team, Mikhail wrote that “over 92 percent of these dictionaries define ’emolument’ . . . with no reference to ‘office’ or ’employment.’ ”
- In other words, by his research, the emoluments clause would bar any benefit or profit to a president via a foreign state, whether in his capacity as president or in any other role, such as the owner of a hotel. It would, specifically, cover Saudi Arabia or Kuwait renting out space at the Trump International Hotel in Washington.
- … On Wednesday [July 18], Mikhail’s labors paid off. In a historic decision, U.S. District Judge Peter Messitte in Greenbelt, Md., ruled that a suit brought by the District of Columbia and Maryland could go forward instead of throwing it out, as the administration desired.
- Messitte cited, in part, what he called the “exhaustive” research of Mikhail, mentioning him by name 17 times.
- And while citing numerous other factors, the judge’s choice of definition proved crucial to the ruling, the first on the meaning of the Constitution’s emoluments clauses. (There are two, one covering domestic gain, the other foreign.)
- The judge noted that Mikhail’s dictionary research was more extensive than that of the president’s lawyers, covering “virtually every founding-era dictionary.” Citing Mikhail again, Messitte said, “the President’s definition appears in less than 8% of these dictionaries” vs. 92 percent for the broader meaning.
- “The clear weight of the evidence,” wrote the judge, “shows that an ’emolument’ was commonly understood by the founding generation to encompass any ‘profit,’ ‘gain,’ or ‘advantage.’ …
- White House uses foreign aid agency to give jobs to Trump loyalists, By Robert O’Harrow Jr. | COM |July 28, 2018
- The White House has assumed control over hiring at a small federal agency that promotes economic growth in poor countries, installing political allies and loyalists in appointed jobs intended for development experts, according to documents and interviews.
- Until the Trump administration, only the chief executive and several other top officials of the Millennium Challenge Corporation (MCC) were selected by the White House, former agency officials said. The chief executive, in turn, used authority granted to the agency by Congress to appoint about two dozen other staffers, primarily for their technical expertise.
- But starting last year, the White House began naming political appointees to the lower-level positions, according to internal rosters obtained by The Washington Post and interviews with former employees and other knowledgeable people. The employees were warned by an agency leader they could lose their jobs to make way for the new political appointees, the former employees said.
- Fourteen allies and Trump loyalists have been placed at the agency as political appointees so far — more than double the number of political staff on the day the president took office, the rosters show. Among them are a 2016 college graduate with a degree in English literature whose grandmother is a senior personnel official in the White House and a recent congressional intern who graduated in May with a master’s degree from the Johns Hopkins University School of Advanced International Studies.
- Ruth Bader Ginsburg aims to serve “at least five more years” on Supreme Court, CBS News July 30, 2018, 8:08 AM
- Supreme Court Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg, the eldest justice on the high court, says she has “at least five more years” left on the bench, according to CNN. The network reports that Ginsburg discussed her tenure on the court following a New York production of “The Originalist.” The play focuses on the life and career of Ginsburg’s late colleague, Justice Antonin Scalia.
- “I’m now 85,” Ginsburg said Sunday evening. “My senior colleague, Justice John Paul Stevens, he stepped down when he was 90, so think I have about at least five more years.”
- During the conversation, Ginsburg also disputed the idea of setting term limits for justices, citing the Constitution. “You can’t set term limits, because to do that you’d have to amend the Constitution,” Ginsburg said. “Article 3 says … we hold our offices during good behavior. And most judges are very well behaved,” she remarked. …
- MAJOR FOREIGN HOLDERS OF TREASURY SECURITIES
|MAJOR FOREIGN HOLDERS OF TREASURY SECURITIES (in billions of dollars)|
|HOLDINGS 1/ AT END OF PERIOD|
|May Apr Mar Feb Jan Dec Nov Oct Sep|
|Country 2018 2018 2018 2018 2018 2017 2017 2017 2017|
|China, Mainland 1183.1 1181.9 1187.7 1176.7 1168.2 1184.9 1176.6 1189.2 1182.3 1201.7 1166.9 1146.5 1102.2|
|Japan 1048.8 1031.2 1043.5 1059.5 1065.8 1061.5 1084.1 1094.0 1096.0 1101.7 1113.3 1090.3 1111.5|
|Ireland 301.0 300.4 317.9 314.0 327.5 326.5 324.3 312.4 310.6 309.0 312.3 304.4 297.8|
|Brazil 299.2 294.1 286.0 272.9 265.7 256.8 265.3 270.0 272.8 273.6 271.9 269.7 269.7|
|United Kingdom 265.0 262.7 263.7 250.5 243.3 250.0 237.5 225.9 237.4 225.0 229.6 236.0 236.4|
|Switzerland 243.4 242.2 245.4 248.0 251.1 249.6 250.9 254.0 253.3 248.2 244.5 244.1 239.4|
|Luxembourg 209.1 213.9 221.6 218.6 220.9 217.6 218.3 217.9 213.9 213.3 213.0 211.6 208.0|
|Hong Kong 191.7 194.0 196.2 196.5 194.1 194.7 194.9 192.3 194.4 194.5 196.7 201.1 196.6|
|Cayman Islands 185.8 180.7 165.5 176.9 168.0 170.6 240.4 247.2 246.9 242.9 240.5 249.3 250.1|
|Taiwan 164.8 168.1 170.1 170.7 175.4 180.9 179.9 181.7 183.9 182.0 184.1 185.9 181.2|
|Saudi Arabia 162.1 159.9 151.2 150.9 143.6 147.4 147.6 145.2 136.7 137.9 142.5 142.0 134.0|
|Belgium 150.5 137.6 125.5 125.7 123.7 119.2 115.3 116.0 104.8 96.9 99.4 98.3 98.7|
|India 148.9 152.8 157.0 152.9 148.6 144.7 140.8 141.4 145.1 138.9 135.7 130.3 127.3|
|Singapore 118.9 118.0 117.8 118.0 122.6 125.0 124.2 130.4 125.2 119.3 112.3 106.4 107.9|
|Korea 104.7 100.1 100.4 101.3 101.7 96.2 98.5 100.1 94.3 95.0 97.9 96.8 100.1|
|Canada 96.6 89.4 92.9 89.1 85.5 86.1 82.4 78.0 75.0 73.6 75.5 76.5 80.1|
|France 89.6 82.5 80.9 77.0 78.4 80.9 76.6 77.9 78.2 76.0 80.0 72.2 74.4|
|Germany 78.3 86.0 76.5 78.5 71.0 72.3 71.6 72.9 74.9 73.0 73.3 68.3 68.3|
|Bermuda 63.6 64.7 66.4 67.4 67.5 67.0 63.5 62.9 62.4 62.3 61.5 60.2 59.8|
|Thailand 62.2 60.8 57.2 68.0 67.2 60.9 68.0 68.4 70.8 71.6 67.2 66.1 66.5|
|United Arab Emirates 60.0 59.7 59.2 57.5 55.1 57.7 58.2 57.7 54.3 55.9 59.9 58.8 60.5|
|Norway 49.7 39.3 40.2 50.4 46.9 51.1 55.3 60.6 64.1 58.0 54.9 53.7 48.3|
|Sweden 45.5 45.1 46.2 46.3 46.3 43.9 44.7 45.3 45.9 44.3 42.7 41.0 40.8|
|Netherlands 45.1 42.5 43.9 44.8 45.1 48.6 47.6 45.1 47.5 50.3 50.5 53.1 52.2|
|Kuwait 43.9 42.6 36.9 36.3 36.9 36.8 36.8 39.4 38.0 35.6 33.0 31.8 31.6|
|Mexico 43.2 41.9 45.2 35.4 33.9 38.7 40.6 41.6 40.5 34.7 35.8 32.4 38.9|
|Poland 40.2 41.4 40.3 40.4 40.7 40.0 38.4 38.8 37.3 36.3 35.6 34.1 35.0|
|Italy 39.6 36.4 37.2 36.6 35.4 35.2 35.6 34.5 35.3 35.4 36.2 36.1 35.6|
|Australia 37.6 36.0 34.1 38.5 37.8 37.5 40.6 38.7 36.9 37.8 37.9 38.1 37.1|
|Spain 34.5 31.3 32.0 32.4 34.7 33.5 36.2 36.9 38.1 38.2 38.2 36.6 37.9|
|Turkey 32.6 38.2 40.9 45.6 49.6 52.6 61.2 61.5 60.8 57.7 54.5 58.9 49.5|
|Philippines 31.6 31.5 32.1 33.0 33.8 36.4 35.8 36.4 35.5 36.3 38.1 37.9 38.2|
|Chile 30.2 28.4 29.8 30.2 29.0 28.9 29.2 28.8 25.6 26.2 27.1 27.4 27.3|
|All Other 512.5 533.5 575.2 575.9 571.4 575.9 585.3 581.3 583.3 566.6 567.7 556.0 565.6|
|Grand Total 6213.6 6169.0 6216.6 6216.4 6186.6 6209.7 6306.2 6324.1 6301.9 6249.4 6230.2 6151.9 6108.4|
- Facebook’s 20% Stock Implosion Signalled By Insider Selling, But Is It A Buy Now?, by Roger Aitken Contributor [FORBES.cpm] Jul 28, 2018, 04:16pm
- … In becoming the biggest-ever one-day wipeout in U.S. stockmarket history, Facebook’s stockmarket value recovered somewhat, but still declined by 19% to around $120 billion. In so doing, the personal wealth of Mark Zuckerberg, co-founder and CEO of the social networking site, tanked by almost $16 billion over stalling growth. Some analysts described it as a “bombshell” moment and the earnings news caused immediate waves of selling on Wall Street. …
- … “I think we were all caught off guard by the extent of the move. However, investors should really have seen something like this coming as insiders at Facebook have been selling shares heavily in recent months,” remarked Neil Wilson, Chief Market Analyst at Markets.com in London in the wake of the earnings release.
- Indeed, over the last three months alone insiders – including Mark Zuckerberg – have sold off $3.8 billion worth of stock in the company. …
- MIKE: But why isn’t the insider selling for months prior to the crash discussed more in the article?
- Typhus making comeback in Texas, By Todd Ackerman | August 3, 2017, Updated: August 3, 2017 10:20pm
- … Between 2003 and 2013, typhus increased tenfold in Texas and spread from nine counties to 41, according to Baylor College of Medicine researchers. The numbers have increased since then.
- Harris County, which reported no cases before 2007, had 32 cases in 2016, double the previous years’ numbers. Researchers do not know why the numbers are increasing. …
- … the infection is severe enough that 60 percent of people who contracted the infection during the 10-year period had to be hospitalized. Four died, one in Houston.
- “We can now add typhus to the growing list of tropical infections striking Texas,” said Dr. Peter Hotez, founding dean of the National School of Tropical Medicine at Baylor and Texas Children’s Hospital, “Chagas, dengue fever, Zika, chikungunya and now typhus – tropical diseases have become the new normal in south and southeast Texas.” …
- Sucking carbon out of the air won’t solve climate change – But it might fill in a few key pieces of the clean energy puzzle, By David Roberts @email@example.com Updated Jul 16, 2018
- Climate change is caused by putting carbon dioxide into the atmosphere. What if, instead, we took it out? …
- … In June, we got the first solid engineering and cost numbers on DAC [“direct air capture”], courtesy of a company called Carbon Engineering out of Calgary, Canada. …
- … The headline news from the paper is that the cost of capturing a ton of CO2 — estimated at around $600 in 2011 — has fallen to between $94 and $232. Almost any source of renewable energy can prevent a ton of carbon for cheaper than that, but still, down at the lower end, beneath $100, DAC starts to look viable in a low-carbon world. …
- … To state the bottom line clearly: The ability to pull carbon out of the air is not a silver bullet. It is not the cheapest or most effective way to fight climate change. It won‘t allow us to bypass any of the hard work of reducing our emissions. …
- ‘’’ From a climate change mitigation perspective, there are two basic ways of dealing with CO2 emissions.
- The smartest and cheapest is to not emit them in the first place. We can do that in a million different ways, by reducing our consumption, using current technologies more efficiently, or shifting to low-carbon technologies and practices.
- The second is to remove CO2 from the biosphere and put it back into the geosphere, where it won‘t cook the planet. Such “negative emissions” may end up being necessary if we emit more CO2 than our “carbon budget” for no more than 2 degrees Celsius rise in global average temperatures, the target the world agreed on in Paris.
- Much of the confusion around [“direct air capture”] arises from the fact that it can play either role — it can either prevent CO2 emissions or draw down CO2. At least for now, Keith’s company, Carbon Engineering, has elected to play in the former space, not the latter. …
- … getting to true negative emissions [has] the greatest long-term implications: moving carbon from the biosphere back into the geosphere, taking it out of circulation (sequestering it) so that it no longer warms the earth.
- … From a net-carbon perspective, all that matters for negative emissions is burying more carbon than you dig up. It doesn’t matter what carbon you bury, or where, as long as the overall sign is negative, more in than out. …
- … Why aren’t the commercial DAC [“direct air capture”] plants burying their emissions? Two reasons.
- First, … CO2 used for greenhouses has economic co-benefits … Same with CO2 used to make fuels, or for enhanced oil recovery, or as an industrial feedstock. In contrast, burying CO2 has no economic co-benefits whatsoever. …
- … Second, even if there were a market for sequestration … [it] would pay for any CCS [“carbon capture and sequestration”], anywhere. That would put DAC in direct competition with carbon capture at thermal power plants, and it is always going to be easier to pull CO2 out of an exhaust stream, where it is concentrated (roughly 1 molecule out of every 10), than out of the air, where it is highly dispersed (roughly 1 molecule out of every 2,500).
- … [T]o get negative, we‘ll have to do more. [T]here are a number of ideas for how it might be done…
- [One] is bioenergy with carbon capture and sequestration (BECCS), which involves burning biomass (plants or biowaste) in a thermal power plant, capturing CO2 from the exhaust stream, and burying the CO2. Biomass is from the biosphere, so this really does involve transferring carbon from the biosphere to the geosphere — reducing net atmospheric carbon.
- California’s future: More big droughts and massive floods, new study finds, By Paul Rogers | firstname.lastname@example.org | Bay Area News Group [mercurynews.com] PUBLISHED: April 23, 2018 at 8:00 am | UPDATED: April 23, 2018 at 9:18 am
- The extreme weather swings that Californians have experienced over the past six years — a historic drought followed by drenching winter storms that caused $100 million in damage to San Jose and wrecked the spillway at Oroville Dam — will become the norm over the coming generations, a new study has found.
- Those types of extremes are not new, but because of climate change, they can be expected to occur more frequently, as hotter global temperatures and warming oceans are putting more water vapor into the air, concluded the study, which was published Monday in the scientific journal Nature Climate Change.
- And perhaps most ominous, the odds are rising that a mega-storm — like the one that famously flooded California in 1862, forcing Leland Stanford to take a rowboat through the streets of Sacramento to his inauguration as governor — will strike again. Such a storm “is more likely than not” to hit the state at least once in the next 40 years and twice in the next 80, the study found. The 1862 event, the largest recorded flood in California history, saw 43 days of continuous rainfall that washed whole towns away and forced the state capital to be temporarily moved to San Francisco.
TOPICS FROM PREVIOUS WEEKS:
- TV Talk:
- “The Good Place”
- “The Orville”
- “Adam Ruins Everything”
SOURCES WHICH MAY BE RELEVANT TO OTHER DISCUSSION:
- Op-Ed: Texans should be wary of bullet train proposal, By Alain Leray – Guest Contributor, Mar 22, 2018, 12:27pm –
- This opinion piece was written by Alain Leray, president and CEO of SNCF America Inc., which is France’s national state-owned railway company
- Amtrak partners with Texas Bullet Train for ticketing, access to national routes, By Dallas Business Journal staff, May 4, 2018, 1:09pm