Delayed Deliveries Are Not a Crisis

By: Sunday January 5, 2014 6:40 pm

A short shopping season of less than 30 days between Thanksgiving and Christmas, combined with extraordinary numbers of deliveries and extreme weather problems caused thousands of packages not to be delivered by Christmas. For some media, this was the top story.

But that’s not a crisis.


Fracking Industry Moves to Recycling Wastewater

By: Monday November 19, 2012 3:22 pm

The fracking boom happened so quickly that nobody had any time to deal with the consequences. Not only did politicians not anticipate regulations, allowing the industry to operate in a kind of free-fire zone, but the industry didn’t recognize the massive amounts of limited resources they would need to continue fracking in the future. Specifically, they didn’t estimate the water needs.

Fracking requires enormous amounts of water. To frack 35,000 wells for one year, you need roughly 70 billion to 140 billion gallons of water, the amount used by all the citizens of any of the largest cities in America, like Chicago. There’s a limit to how much water will be available over time without just wresting it away from drinking supplies and other human needs, short of draining the oceans (hey, there’s one way to combat sea level rise, just skim it all for fracking!). And a lot of fracking takes place in remote areas without access to that much water without trucking it in. So it has just dawned on the industry that they might want to try to recycle their wastewater.

The War on Efficient Trash Collection

By: Monday November 8, 2010 2:56 pm

As you probably know, I recently moved from an idyllic left wing small city to an idyllic right wing small city. Both are great places to raise a family, both have charming downtowns, and both support diverse local businesses. One big difference, I’ve come to learn, is that the left wing city provides high quality public services–including single stream curbside recycling, best-in-state public schools, and well-developed social services, whereas the right wing city has privatized those same functions, with “choice” in trash collection, a significant reliance on religious schools (this is one of the hotbeds of voucher activism), and church groups providing many of the social services.

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