13 Dec 2009

Flashback: 5 -- 11 Dec 2008

These year-old posts are still relevant, so please read -- and comment!

BEST: Engineers Do It with Objects -- the American Water Works Association will sell you a CD that will help you project water demand -- using methods familiar to astrologers everywhere, and just as accurate.

Water and Sanitation in Developing Countries -- a big post with lots of good references.

Filter Propaganda -- my take on filters and bottled water. Still no cheap, accurate water quality test out there? :(  Speaking of that, Farmer Propaganda tells you how well farmers manage water.

Poll Results -- Carbon Revenue -- readers voted to direct revenue from carbon permit auctions to green projects. That's better than no auctions at all, but not as good (IMO) as per capita rebates. Speaking of carbon, there's Carbon-offset Fraud Incompetence -- as in one of the largest certification agencies making stuff up. No surprise, they are back in business.

BEST: Are the "Poor" Really Better Off? One person thinks that the poor will not suffer in this recession. Not only are they suffering more (foreclosures, jobs, budget cuts), but the billionaires bailout has given greater benefits to the rich. Oh, great. Along similar lines, I discuss sustainability and equity in Commodification and Community.

Criminal Water Managers at Truckee Carson Irrigation District lied to the Bureau of Reclamation to get more water. Oh, great. OTOH, Sunshine on Public Water Utilities makes them perform better. Yes, please!

BEST: Department of Destruction -- how the government subsidizes destruction of the environment. The Onion, OTOH, tells us how the USDA is ending Destructive Tuber Policies!


  1. The water and sanitation post is really useful. I will get to the others later.

  2. I read the links on carbon offsets, and murky is the right word to describe them.

    I'd like to point out that even if they are open and transparent, they still create some serious distortions, by monetizing one ecosystem value (sequestration) while others remain at zero. This will heavily incentivize protecting lands that have an immediate carbon sequestration ability, while encouraging degradation or development of lands that may have other vital ecosystem values (watersheds?), but don't sequester as much carbon.

    100% auction C&T, with no offsets. We know the carbon emissions number, now let's focus on reaching it.

  3. @Josh

    Really good point.

    Even for 'carbon sequestration' land, biology will often release the sequestered carbon back into the atmosphere in a decade or so.

    And, climax forests no longer sequester much carbon per year. It is the actively growing, new forests in undisturbed land that have the greatest net carbon sequestration.


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