Posts Tagged ‘Fish’

Persuasion vs. pollution

May 12, 2008

Because anything that is flushed down a storm drain is not “treated” before it reaches a stream or river. This means that oil, antifreeze, paint, grass clippings, household waste, pet wastes, or any other waste on streets and sidewalks goes directly into a nearby stream, river, or lake. The next time you wash your car on your driveway, consider where the water goes.From the Baltimore Sun By Tom Pelton | Sun reporter May 12, 2008>>read more.     A survey finds metro-area people willing to work for clean water but not pay for it
More than 80 percent of Baltimore-area residents say they’re willing to do “a lot more” to prevent water pollution, but they don’t want to pay more taxes to solve the problem, according to a newly released opinion survey.     This suggests an ad campaign to educate people about steps they can take in their personal lives – picking up pet waste, using less lawn fertilizer and stopping littering – could help clean up Baltimore Harbor and the Chesapeake Bay, according to a pair of local environmental groups that commissioned the research.     Changing personal behavior could be more politically palatable than asking the city to pay millions to install trash filters in its storm-water drains to keep floating debris out of the harbor, leaders of the Herring Run Watershed Association and the Jones Falls Watershed Association said.     “People want to solve problems, but they never want to pay for them,” said Mary Sloan Roby, executive director of the Herring Run Watershed Association. “The issue has to impact people directly and personally. Are your children going to be safe to play in the water and eat the fish?”     The organizations, along with other groups in the Stormwater Action Coalition, hope to attract government and corporate donations to create an anti-pollution ad campaign.     One goal of the public education campaign is to end ignorance about what happens to rainwater when it washes over city streets.     Eighty-two percent of 800 Baltimore-area residents who were surveyed by phone last summer said they are aware that storm water from streets and parking lots flows into local waterways.     But 17 percent of the people falsely believed that the storm water was treated before it spilled into Baltimore Harbor. In reality, storm water – often full of trash, oil and other pollutants from the streets – flows untreated and mostly unfiltered into the harbor, which leads to the Patapsco River and then the bay.     And 38 percent of those polled don’t know what happens to storm water. Only 16 percent knew for certain that storm water is not treated, while 28 percent thought it was probably not treated but weren’t sure, according to research for the environmental groups by the Annapolis-based OpinionWorks polling firm.     “People don’t understand how watersheds operate, and they don’t understand the connection between their lawn and the harbor – but once they get that, they respond,” said Steve Raabe, president of OpinionWorks.      Eighty-three percent correctly replied that it would make a “big difference” in cleaning up local waters if they picked up litter and kept their local storm drains clear of debris. Three-quarters of respondents said picking up pet waste would make a “big difference” and 67 percent said that using less fertilizer on their lawns would help a lot.     Eighty-eight percent said they were “very bothered” by floating trash in Baltimore Harbor, which they said was hurting tourism and the economy. “People are emotionally upset about the condition of the harbor,” Raabe said. “Many people in authority may underestimate that level of antipathy and shame about the harbor.”     But 63 percent of those polled said they would be “very bothered” or “somewhat bothered” to pay more in taxes to clean up water pollution.     During interviews with focus groups concluded by OpinionWorks, several people thought that the floating trash in the harbor is being tossed by tourists – not washed from the streets of Baltimore, which is the source of most harbor trash, Raabe said.     Over the past six years, the city has spent more than $1 million installing filters to catch floating debris as it flows out of storm-water outfalls toward the harbor in Canton, Carroll Park, Hunting Ridge and the Carroll Camden Industrial Area.     New York City has trash-catching systems in its storm-water pipes, and Chicago long ago rerouted its storm-water pipes to direct most rainwater and trash away from that city’s waterfront.      Baltimore’s four new trash filters have had some success, catching 133,955 pounds of floating debris last year, according to city figures. But the filter in Carroll Park broke earlier this year when it was vandalized.     “If people didn’t litter, we wouldn’t need any of this” filtering, said Kurt Kocher, spokesman for the city’s Department of Public Works.

Freeze-Packed Used Condoms

May 5, 2008

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 
From AdRANTs by Steve Hall May 5,  2008>>read more.     If you’re one of those beach police dudes, you might want to make sure you take your keys out of your little beach cart before you inform a beachgoer they’re on a private beach lest you want an angry walrus to drive off with it. That particular scenario is part of a Saatchi & Saatchi LA-created campaign for the beach protection cause group Surfrider.     Along with an amateur-style video with the walrus antics, which, let’s be honest, is pretty lame, comes seafood packaging placed in local farmer’s markets which don’t contain fish, rather various collections of trash collected from the beach. Not exactly the sort of thing you’d want to see when digging through the cooler for that prefect cut of fish.

Cheney: Leaving No Tracks

April 24, 2008

GottlichFrom the Washington Post Leaving No Tracks by BARTON GELLMAN & JO BECKER 27 jun 2007 Staff researcher Julie Tate contributed to this report click to read more.     Sue Ellen Wooldridge, the 19th-ranking Interior Department official, arrived at her desk in Room 6140 a few months after Inauguration Day 2001. A phone message awaited her.     “This is Dick Cheney,” said the man on her voice mail, Wooldridge recalled in an interview. “I understand you are the person handling this Klamath situation. Please call me at — hmm, I guess I don’t know my own number. I’m over at the White House.”     Wooldridge wrote off the message as a prank. It was not. Cheney had reached far down the chain of command, on so unexpected a point of vice presidential concern, because he had spotted a political threat arriving on Wooldridge’s desk.     In Oregon, a battleground state that the Bush-Cheney ticket had lost by less than half of 1 percent, drought-stricken farmers and ranchers were about to be cut off from the irrigation water that kept their cropland and pastures green. Federal biologists said the Endangered Species Act left the government no choice: The survival of two imperiled species of fish was at stake.     Law and science seemed to be on the side of the fish. Then the vice president stepped in.     First Cheney looked for a way around the law, aides said. Next he set in motion a process to challenge the science protecting the fish, according to a former Oregon congressman who lobbied for the farmers.     Because of Cheney’s intervention, the government reversed itself and let the water flow in time to save the 2002 growing season, declaring that there was no threat to the fish. What followed was the largest fish kill the West had ever seen, with tens of thousands of salmon rotting on the banks of the Klamath River.     Characteristically, Cheney left no tracks.     The Klamath case is one of many in which the vice president took on a decisive role to undercut long-standing environmental regulations for the benefit of business.     By combining unwavering ideological positions — such as the priority of economic interests over protected fish — with a deep practical knowledge of the federal bureaucracy, Cheney has made an indelible mark on the administration’s approach to everything from air and water quality to the preservation of national parks and forests.     It was Cheney’s insistence on easing air pollution controls, not the personal reasons she cited at the time, that led Christine Todd Whitman to resign as administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency, she said in an interview that provides the most detailed account so far of her departure.