R.J. Ruppenthal  @  ChelseaGreen

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So much for zero-emission cars?

June 24th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

So much for zero-emission cars (for now, anyway). Unfortunately, Scientific American is running an article in its July issue exposing the myth behind electric cars. Basically, the electricity you are plugging your car into comes from sources that are still pretty dirty (think: coal). The dirtiness of your car's footprint depends upon where you plug [...]

California Assembly Votes to Ban Plastic Bags

June 5th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

If California bans plastic grocery bags, it will be a great step toward decreasing our impact upon the ocean ecosystem, eliminate a lot of unnecessary cleanup of beaches and natural areas, and cut down on resource use, including a small amount of fossil fuels in the plastic. Hopefully, the California State Senate will follow the [...]

Huge energy increase in US food production

May 27th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

Energy used by the US food system was responsible for 80% of the increase in American energy use for the most recent period surveyed, according to a report from the United States Department of Agriculture. Apparently, this means we are becoming more dependent on food processing and farm mechanization. Americans are eating higher and higher [...]

Please Help! Stop Strawberries From Becoming More Toxic!

May 8th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

I grow as many of my own berries as I can, and buy the rest from local organic growers at farmer's markets. There is a good reason I do not buy "conventional" strawberries and it's called methyl bromide. MB is a dangerous and carcinogenic greenhouse gas that's been banned in most of the world but [...]

Growing food in freak weather

May 3rd, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

I was just watching a CNN video clip of flooding in Tennessee. It shows an interstate highway turned into a river. A big house floats past a group of cars that are submerged (link below). Well, if it's not flooding in one area, it's a drought someplace else, or an earthquake, or volcano ash, or [...]

U.S. Department of Energy admits oil may decline from 2011

April 27th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

Recently, I blogged about the U.S. military's admission that oil demand will soon exceed production, starting as early as 2012. That one was reported in the British media, but not in the U.S. (except for a few blogs and websites). Similarly, the U.S. Dept. of Energy has said that oil may begin to decline from [...]

U.S. military warns massive oil shortages are on the way

April 15th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

From the Guardian (UK): "The US military has warned that surplus oil production capacity could disappear within two years and there could be serious shortages by 2015 with a significant economic and political impact.
The energy crisis outlined in a Joint Operating Environment report from the US Joint Forces Command comes [...]

Free Tomato Seeds for Families in Need

April 1st, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

A lot of folks are going through tough times. One great way to save a little money on food is to grow some of your own fresh food. Even a few plants, grown in the ground or in containers, can produce armloads of vegetables that you will not have to buy. As a recession-buster, a [...]

Disappearing Island. Did IPCC UNDER-estimate climate change?

March 24th, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

Recent news reports of the disappearing island in the Bay of Bengal (link below) remind us that sea levels are continuing to rise. Somewhat separately, there has been a conservative uproar over some glaring errors in the 2007 climate change report by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC). The conservative denialist belief is that [...]

Honey Bee Collapse on Vancouver Island

March 23rd, 2010 by R.J. Ruppenthal

Farmers on Vancouver Island in British Columbia, Canada, are reporting losses of up to 90% in their honey bee colonies. Colony collapse is not a new story by now, but it continues to take twists and turns, devastating agriculture.  So much of our food production system is highly dependent on pollinators and our chemical agriculture [...]