Wednesday, April 20, 2016

Big Dreams, Small Spaces: Maddy & Tim Harland's Forest Garden

What Americans Can Learn From the New Dutch Dietary Guidelines

[Goodis] Last month the Voedingscentrum, the Netherland’s state-funded nutrition authority, issued an aggressive new set of national dietary guidelines. This is the first time the nation’s official food program has been updated since 2004 and it will be used by many Dutch health providers and nutritionists. They’re pretty similar to most other national dietary guidelines, but the regimen sets itself apart by placing hardline consumption limits on meat and animal products.
The Dutch, they say, should cap meat consumption at two servings per week, with no more than 60 percent of those portions comprising red meat. Furthermore, none of that red meat should processed. Other common animal-based proteins have been scaled back as well: No more than one serving of fish, no more than three eggs and no cheese if possible, favoring nuts and legumes instead.
This is the first time the Voedingscentrum has placed hard limits on meat consumption. These new recommendations are not just notable for their definitive stance on ever-popular animal products, but because they were based as much on environmental sustainability as on health issues. Namely, the meat guidelines directly address overfishing and the inefficient land use and high carbon emissions associated with red meat production.
The environmental impact of meat processing is an especially important issue for Americans to embrace—not just because we account for perhaps 10 percent of agriculture-linked greenhouse gas emissions — but also because we recently struggled (and failed) to bring similar considerations into our own dietary guidelines. Similar concerns but a lack of equivalent action in the U.S. may tempt some to turn to the Dutch guidelines as an alternative to ours here in the States. Yet dietary experts claim that while these guidelines point in the right universal direction, they may not be universally applicable in their particulars. But they can help us reevaluate how we consider the role of sustainability in our own food supply chain. Read More

Understanding How to Move and Manipulate Energy

[Goop] Energy is a palpable, animating life force—one that we can all understand in the context of how we feel from day-to-day (sluggish, over-tired, or on the flip side, invincible). Usually we attribute our low energy days to a lack of sleep or bad food. But it’s significantly more complicated than that, according to therapist Aimee Falchuk, who believes that our energetic systems might very well be impacted by physical, emotional, and cognitive blocks we’ve picked up from childhood. Falchuk, who practices a Reichian theory of body-centered psychotherapy from the school of Core Energetics, spends her time helping people free or move stuck emotional energy so that they can tap into their full potential. (For more from Falchuk, see her piece for us on how to use anger productively.)
We often complicate the word energy by trying to define it in scientific or mystical terms. All we need to understand energy is to get quiet and feel into ourselves or our surroundings. For example, when we feel present, our energy is grounded; when we feel attraction or repulsion, we may feel an energetic charge; when we laugh or cry, we may feel a discharge of our energy.
Certain situations or people can deplete our energy. Alternatively, in places where we don’t feel we are enough, we may cling onto others using their fuel source as our own. Even boundaries are a matter of energy: We may bind our energy when we want to create separation, and let our energy flow openly when we want to come close.
One of the first things we learn in school is that energy can neither be created nor destroyed—but that it can be altered. Energy can be sped up or slowed down. It can exist in a closed system in which the energy is held or bound, or it can exist in an open system in which the energy flows. Uncontained energy can cause a system to become frenetic or fragmented. Depleted energy can cause a system to collapse.
Despite its power, energy in of itself is a neutral force. It is consciousness that directs its movement. If we think of this in terms of the energy and consciousness of the human experience we may see that the more conscious we are, the more we direct our energy towards creation, connection, and evolution. The less conscious we are, the more our energy is used towards separation, stagnation, or even destruction. Read More

Experts Raise Alarm: Yellowstone Could Erupt In 2016, Mega Earthquakes Imminent In North America — Global Elite Prepare For The Apocalypse

[Inquisitr] After new disturbing footage showing the Yellowstone caldera at the Yellowstone National Park simmering with steam and ash raised fears that the supervolcano could be about to erupt catastrophically, the doomsday blogosphere has exploded with fear-mongering speculation about impending doom. Allegations are making the rounds that the global elite knowing something the rest of us don’t know have recently stepped up preparation for imminent global catastrophe by acquiring luxury survival bunkers.
Some sources in the conspiracy theory blogosphere — the so-called “alternative news media” — claim that the elite have information about an impending global disaster and are deliberately withholding the information from the public to prevent mass panic that could hinder their secret preparation to survive the apocalypse.
Scientific experts such as Roger Bilham, geophysicist at the University of Colorado, appear to have substantiated ongoing conspiracy theory speculation with recent comments that the world is experiencing potentially catastrophic spike in global seismic activity that raises legitimate concerns that renewed activity at Yellowstone could be sign of an imminent eruption.
Experts have also voiced concern that the upsurge in global seismic activity could presage major catastrophic earthquakes.

Footage uploaded to YouTube on April 15, 2016, by user Kat Martin2016, showing the Yellowstone supervolcano simmering with suppressed activity, emerges as the world witnesses a dramatic upsurge in seismic activity in the notorious region known ominously as the Ring of Fire, spanning the outer perimeter of the Pacific Ocean. In the last two weeks there have been a series of major earthquakes, with Japan and Ecuador experiencing major events on Saturday, April 16, 2016. There have also been a series of volcanic eruptions indicating a level of upsurge in global seismic activity not seen in recent history.
While experts have hitherto attempted to allay fears, saying that the probability of a major eruption of Yellowstone in the foreseeable future was very small, recent events have raised fears about the supervolcano sitting on top of a massive reserve of magma, capable of generating a volcanic eruption that could cause global devastation.
The last super-eruption of Yellowstone occurred about 640,000 years ago, followed by minor eruptions — such as one that occurred about 150,000 years — and a lava flow that occurred only about 70,000 years ago.
Experts say a new major eruption of Yellowstone could be about 2,000 times as powerful as Washington’s Mount St. Helens’ 1980 eruption. A major eruption of Yellowstone could devastate the northwest of the U.S. and make about two-thirds of the country uninhabitable. Spewing massive quantities of ash, lava, and rock into the atmosphere, a major eruption could wipe out an area about 100 miles radius. Outside the 100-mile death zone, a deadly rain of volcanic ash could pile up 10-feet deep over an area up to 1000 miles radius, causing mass death (see YouTube below). The effect of the ash released into the atmosphere would be felt globally, blocking out the sun and causing a global winter with global average temperatures plunging several degrees. The drop in temperatures would lead to catastrophic disruption of global food production and mass death.
Many observers point out that the fact that Yellowstone poses the greatest danger to the Unites States and the rest of world, more than the risk of an asteroid or meteor, has been downplayed by the authorities.
The conspiracy theory blogosphere came alive recently with multiple reports that the urgency and gravity of the threat posed by the recent upsurge in global seismic activity, which the U.S. government has been trying to downplay, was indicated by President Vladimir Putin’s recent deployment of Russian troops in the country’s Eastern Military District. The troops were allegedly deployed in preparation for devastating earthquakes and tsunamis that could hit the Kamchatka peninsula in the next few weeks.
According to the reports circulating widely in the conspiracy theory blogosphere, the Russian defense ministry also issued orders to officials in the Far East Pacific Ocean region of the country to come to Moscow on April 27 for a conference where preparations for a major natural disaster would be discussed.
The Russian government also reportedly stated the high risk of a “mega earthquake” hitting the U.S. Pacific Northwest.
The latest deployments of troops by the Russian authorities, according to reports in the conspiracy theory blogosphere, were in response to warnings by Mehran Keshe — a controversial figure revered in some online circles as an engineer who invented a revolutionary technology called “Magrav technology” — that the earthquake that recently hit the Kingdom of Tonga could be the signal of an imminent “catastrophic alignment” of the Pacific Plate. Read More

Monday, April 18, 2016

Ecuador and Japan earthquakes: Are they related?

[CNN] It's way too early to tell, said Paul Caruso, a geophysicist with the U.S. Geological Survey.
"It's one day after the Ecuador earthquake and two days after the Japanese earthquake, so no real research has been done on these quakes as far as they're being connected," he said Sunday. 
"Usually we don't think earthquake are connected across the ocean," Caruso said, but there's ongoing research in "remote triggering," the idea that a big quake can cause another quake a long distance away.
The distance between Japan and Ecuador: 15,445 kilometers, or about 9,590 miles.
Both quakes occurred in this horseshoe-shaped area the National Geographic Society defines as "a string of volcanoes and sites of seismic activity, or earthquakes, around the edges of the Pacific Ocean."
It may seem more than coincidental that the quakes occurred a few days apart. But it's also true that the large majority of the world's earthquakes -- about 90% -- occur in the Ring of Fire, per the National Geographic Society. Read More

Japan Earthquake: Mapping The Troubled Legacy Of One Of The World’s Most Turbulent ‘Disaster Zones’

Japan is by no means new to earthquakes. With a history of terrifying natural events, it stands out as one of the most disaster-prone and disruptive geographic regions on the planet. Some of the most catastrophic and economically crippling natural disasters have occurred in Japan, costing the country nearly 200 billion dollars in an exhausting task of reform and recovery every decade or so. The country has experienced innumerable instances of nature’s unrelenting onslaught and has had to contend Read the full story

Mystery of Volcano Lightning Explained

[Discovery News] When Mt. Vesuvius erupted in the year 79, famously burying the town of Pompeii in ash, historian Pliny the Younger recorded that the volcano expelled “frightening dark clouds, rent by lightning twisted and hurled, opening to reveal huge figures of flame.” It was the first description of a phenomenon that, almost 2,000 years later, is the stuff of viral Internet photos: lightning that arcs its way through the ash plumes of some volcanic eruptions.
It’s a phenomenon that has, however, puzzled scientists, who have wondered exactly how such lightning is generated. Two new papers, published in Geophysical Research Letters, the journal of the American Geophysical Union (AGU), have helped provide clarity and, in the process, unify two competing schools of thought. (Yes, there are competing schools of thought on volcanic lightning.)
The basics of lightning are understood well enough: Particles within a cloud become electrified, generating a field in which positive and negative charges are separated, and the lightning restores the charges to balance. In thunderstorms, ice crystals are the particles that are electrified. What was unknown was whether ice was also required for volcanic lightning, or whether friction between particles of ash performed that role. The new studies show that both can be true, depending on the situation. Read More

9 ways climate change is making us sick

The Obama administration has released a major new report on how manmade global warming is making Americans sicker—and it's only going to get worse. Developed over three years and involving approximately 100 climate and public health experts, the 332-page report was based on more than 1,800 published scientific studies and new federal research, and was reviewed by the National Academies of Sciences. The report, titled The Impacts of Climate Change on Human Health in the United States, " Read the full story

Sunday, April 3, 2016

Climate Catastrophe, Coming Even Sooner?

[New Yorker] One of the first people to propose that climate change could result in rapid sea-level rise was an eccentric British geographer named John Mercer. A hesitant speaker in public, Mercer was less restrained in private. He was once arrested for jogging naked. It was said that he liked to do his fieldwork in the nude—a curious habit for a man who studied glaciers.
In a seminal paper published in 1968, Mercer proposed that the West Antarctic Ice Sheet, known in scientific circles as WAIS, was vulnerable to collapse. The reason, he wrote, was that the ice sheet rests on land that is below sea level. It is buttressed by floating ice shelves that extend far out to sea, but were these to disintegrate, Mercer wrote, then “changing horizontal forces” would cause the ice sheet to lift off its base. At that point, the sea would rush in and WAIS would start to warm from below as well as above. This would initiate the ice sheet’s demise, which would be “rapid, perhaps even catastrophic.” Several meters of sea-level rise would ensue.
More recent research has tended to confirm Mercer’s worst fears. The latest example comes from a study published Wednesday, in the journal Nature. “Antarctic Model Raises Prospect of Unstoppable Ice Collapse,” ran the headline in the news story that accompanied it.
The new paper, coauthored by Rob DeConto, of the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and David Pollard, of Pennsylvania State University, arose out of frustration. The two researchers had spent years working on a computer model that did not seem to capture rises in sea level that were already known to have taken place. Before the last ice age, about a hundred and twenty thousand years ago, for instance, sea levels were at least twenty feet higher than they are now. But DeConto and Pollard found that unless they programmed the model with temperatures that were unrealistically high for that period it could not account for such levels.
Then the two got an idea from a colleague, Richard Alley, also of Penn State. Alley suggested that they look at what would happen if the floating ice shelves were lost. This would leave towering cliffs of ice exposed to the sea, which could make them vulnerable to rapid collapse. (A version of this process seems already to be under way in parts of Greenland.) Read More