Swale:  low or hollow place, especially a marshy depression between ridges.

I stumbled on the channel of Andrew Millison, a permaculture instructor at Oregon State University. He’s got some very interesting material like this, that I’m going to be delving into. Nice follow on to the water harvesting post from a few days ago.
A lot of folks working on figuring this out, using technology often informed by indigenous techniques.

CORRECTIONS AND CLARIFICATIONS 1) MATH IS CORRECT: What I said was: “It was started in 1973, the year I was born, and it was completed in 1993. So this is about 30 years of this canal being here”. This canal has been here since 1993. It is now 2022. That’s about 30 years that this canal has been here. 2) The yearly evaporation from the canal is 5 billion gallons, not 5 million gallons. 3) The CAP doesn’t supply 80% of Arizona’s population. It reaches 80% of Arizona’s population. These are two different things. Sorry about that!!!


“Please walk away.” Shell contractor releases her resignation video, excoriating the company for lack of commitment to decarbonization.

Financial Times:(paywall)

Last Monday, Caroline Dennett, a safety consultant at Shell, published an excoriating resignation email, saying she could “no longer work for a company that ignores all the alarms and dismisses the risks of climate change and ecological collapse”. New exploration projects belied the company’s commitment to Net Zero, she said, and she urged fellow workers in the industry to follow her before it was too late.

The next day, addressing graduates of Seton Hall University in New Jersey, UN secretary-general António Guterres pleaded with them not to work “for climate wreckers”.

The coincidence of the calls wasn’t planned but it feels like a sea change, with workers anxious that staying in the sector now poses too great a risk to their careers and their consciences.

Why is retention such an issue? People are leaving because they say they can’t see their careers developing, they fear reputational damage or can’t square the work with their values. Veterans and newcomers alike are increasingly attracted to new businesses developing renewable technologies like carbon capture which don’t carry the stigma of oil and gas majors.

Wilful blindness to this problem perpetuates fear and silence. At Shell, where Dennett surveyed 20,000 people and gathered half a million words of open feedback, she found a “startling” lack of conversation about net zero. “Such talk might occur in the boardroom, in the PR department, in the marketing and branding departments,” she said, “but in the operations where it matters, I’ve not heard it. Leaders in management communicate their commitment to safety through actions, not just words. If you’re not doing it, then it’s not happening.” 

“They know that continued oil and gas extraction causes extreme harms, to our climate, to our environment and to people. And whatever they say, Shell is simply not winding down on fossil fuels.”

Dennett told the Guardian she “could not marry these conflicts with my conscience”, adding: “I could not carry that any longer, and I’m ready to deal with the consequences.”

Shell was a “major client” of Dennett’s business, which specialises in evaluating safety procedures in high-risk industries including oil and gas production. She began working with Shell in the aftermath of BP’s Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010, which rocked the industry.

“I can no longer work for a company that ignores all the alarms and dismisses the risks of climate change and ecological collapse,” she said. “Because, contrary to Shell’s public expressions around net zero, they are not winding down on oil and gas, but planning to explore and extract much more.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Financial Times: (paywall)

As most of Europe struggles to end the continent’s dependence on Russian fossil fuels, one country might seem to have good reason to feel less anxious than most: nuclear-friendly France.

The country’s longstanding reliance on nuclear power means Paris has faced few of the difficult decisions made by countries such as Germany, which is exposed to the economic blowback of an abrupt exit from Russian gas.

But a series of maintenance issues including corrosion at some of France’s ageing reactors, troubles at state-controlled energy group EDF and a years-long absence of significant new nuclear investment are sapping supply and casting doubts on whether nuclear will insulate France from the troubles of its neighbours. Half of France’s 56 reactors are offline — a record — with 12 of those shut down because of corrosion inspections.


Europe’s biggest producer of atomic energy, which usually exports cheap power during the winter, may be forced to import this year after cutting its output forecast a third time. A fleet hobbled by faults is not just a problem for France but for countries such as neighboring Germany, which may have to burn more gas to keep the lights on despite pledging to cut its reliance on Moscow.

“We have a French problem which is taking place at the wrong time, given the geopolitical situation,” said Nicolas Leclerc, co-founder of Paris-based energy consultant Omnegy. “The whole European equilibrium may be threatened.”

Countries across the region are rushing to secure alternative gas supplies following Vladimir Putin’s invasion of Ukraine. That’s a tall order for nations such as Germany, which relied on Russia for 40% of its supply last year and is shutting down its own nuclear industry. Although the country plans to buy up large amounts of liquefied gas, it doesn’t yet have import terminals of its own.

“France will require that all adjacent countries have ways to produce electricity,” Leclerc said. “It’s important for us that Germany isn’t too much at odds with Russia. If they don’t have access to Russian gas, they won’t be able to produce the electricity we need.”

Read the rest of this entry »

Above, Tuscon resident Brad Lancaster is a community activist who has taken initiative to make his home city more resilient, even in the face of a long term drought and warming climate. His website is harvestingrainwater.com

Video below has a little history on Brad and his efforts.


Canada is also feeling the effects of extreme heat: in British Columbia last summer, 595 people died from the heat. The village of Lytton, B.C., set a new Canadian heat record (49.6 C) on June 29, before it was razed by a wildfire the next day. The same “heat dome” left the ground parched, contributing to catastrophic flooding in B.C. months later.

Feltmate is one of the authors of a recent report warning of a “potentially lethal future” for Canadians in terms of heat, especially those living in B.C.’s southern interior, along the U.S. border in the Prairies and in southern Ontario and Quebec.

“We’re going to see extreme heat events that will make what we saw in British Columbia last year during the heat dome look relatively mild,” Feltmate said.

When you’re exposed to prolonged heat, you may feel sluggish because your organs are working harder to keep you cool — and alive. 

Your heart beats harder to push blood to your skin, where it can cool down. Sweating is also essential for cooling your body, but it gets harder as humidity increases.

In extreme cases of heat stroke, your body essentially begins to cook, breaking down cells and causing organ damage.

“It is very much like cooking an egg,” said Professor Stephen Cheung, an expert in environmental stress on human physiology at Brock University in St. Catharines, Ont. 

“The reason it goes from a liquid to solid white mass is because the proteins have changed … If your body just continues heating up and isn’t able to control its temperature, eventually your proteins are going to be doing the same thing in your cells.”

Sitting in the shade and drinking water isn’t enough when you’re already suffering heat stroke. “It is critical to cool [an overheating person] down as rapidly as possible, ideally by immersing them in as cold water as possible,” Cheung said.

Being too hot at bedtime also makes it hard for us to sleep, which can lead to poor decision-making and injuries, and have a detrimental impact on people’s mental health, says Michael Brauer, a professor at the University of British Columbia’s school of population and public health.

What is most often ignored in stories like this, is, how will the other creatures we share the planet with adapt to heat events like these?

National Geographic:

As the Pacific Northwest baked in 115 degree heat last month, fuzzy baby hawks sat sweltering in their nests, 50 feet off the ground. Unable to fly, the young raptors dealt with the heat in the only way they could: One by one, they threw themselves out. 

Read the rest of this entry »

Above, Michael Mann spent a sabbatical year in Australia and, as well as being witness to a catastrophic series of fires and floods – aggressively promoted climate science in numerous TV appearances, as above. Whatever the reason, Australians made a sharp turn away from climate denying PM Scott Morrison in a recent election, and toward a science based policy on climate.
Does it show a larger shift in Western democracies, and can it still make a difference?


Climate change is heating up elections — and the right is getting torched.

Voters in Australia dumped Scott Morrison’s Liberal-National government from power on Saturday in what has been dubbed the country’s “climate election.” High-profile Liberals were driven from the party’s inner-city heartlands losing six seats to pro-climate independents and at least one to the Greens. 

New Labor Prime Minister Anthony Albanese flew to Japan Monday to meet leaders from the Quad — a grouping including Australia, India, Japan and the U.S. — bearing a message: “There’s a new government in Australia, and it’s a government that represents a change in terms of the way that we deal with the world on issues like climate change.”

Below, Prior to the election, Australian media devoted a lot of serious attention to climate science myth busting.

Read the rest of this entry »

That birds eat insects should not be a big “eewww” for anyone – certainly not for anyone that eats dead birds.
Nevertheless, the benefits are so great for the planet that marketers are working to build acceptance.


Chicken is now the most commonly-consumed land animal in the world, generating 790 million tons of carbon dioxide emissions a year. One way to make it more sustainable is to switch up its high-impact soybean feed for more sustainable protein sources, like algae and insects. 

But a group of researchers show that marketing the sustainability attributes of this insect- and algae-fed chicken could be a “double-edged sword”—encouraging uptake in environmentally-minded consumers, while driving others away.

Since livestock fed with alternative proteins is a fast-approaching reality, this holds important lessons for how to make these more sustainable meats palatable to the average consumer.

Nutritionally-similar to soybeans, fast-growing algae and insects offer the benefit of decoupling feed production from the land. Yet these more sustainable attributes come with a trade off: algae and insect meal give chicken meat a slightly alarming, reddish-yellow hue.

There’s no use in trying to hide the change; the best approach would be to tell consumers why the chicken looks the way it does. And the researchers on the new study were curious whether this could be an opportunity to persuade chicken-lovers to choose more sustainably-fed meat.

In their social study, they presented over 1000 German consumers with pictures of chicken breasts, some of which had been fed conventional meals, and some of which were nourished with spirulina algae, or larvae of the blackfly—and which therefore varied in color. Half the consumer group received straightforward information about the effects of the feed on the hue of the meat. The entire group also received information about the health and environmental attributes of each type of feed. 

The survey revealed a noticeable split in how much consumers favored the algae- and insect-fed chicken: those who identified as environmentally-minded at the outset of the study were more likely to select and be willing to pay for the more sustainably-nourished chicken, with a stronger preference for birds fed with insects (and whose meat has a hue more similar to that of regular chickens.) “Environmentally conscious consumers are most likely to seek insect fed meat when given a chance to select such products,” the researchers observe.

Read the rest of this entry »

WFLA Tampa:

There is arguably nothing more influential in determining how active the Atlantic hurricane season will be than El Niño and La Niña. La Niñas typically cause more active seasons than El Niño; but how much more active?

An exclusive Max Defender 8 analysis reveals the difference is even more shocking than previously thought, with La Niñas producing triple the number of hurricanes over the past 30 years.

The image above shows a direct comparison between all hurricane tracks during nine La Niña seasons – the top image – and during nine El Niño seasons – the bottom image. The difference is stark.

Below WFLA Tampa’s Chief Meteorologist on why it matters.