Archive for the Toxic Waste Category

Hot Weather

Posted in America, Britain, Children, Conservation, Environment, European Union, Modern World, News, Teens, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 06/08/2018 by floroy1942

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All over the world the temperatures are getting hotter, and the there seems no end to it. In Europe the weather is climbing, and it will rise in August. When winter comes there will be cold and snow everywhere and the we will be up to our eyeballs in snow.

The weather is changing and I predict it will the heat will be higher next year. People are dying from the heat all over the world and it is getting worse. In winter there will be many more deaths as the cold grips certain countries.

The number of cars on the roads is getting to be bigger and bigger and we have to stop this. These cars are effecting the weather and we have to reduce the cars on the roads. Some people have four cars for the sons and daughters, and this is effecting the traffic on the road. This has to stop.

In twenty years time we will have electric cars on the road, but that is a long time away. In the meantime the pollution is getting worse by the minute, and we will be suffering with the congestion of the atmosphere. Already there is contamination in the air and people breath it in. We have already seen many people die from lung cancer and this will get worse.

I am glad I am seventy-five and I will maybe see eighty before I die, but the young folk will suffer in the long run. We have to do something about it by reducing the cars on the roads.

Roy.

Weather Changes

Posted in America, Britain, Conservation, Environment, European Union, Forests, Nature, News, Plastic Rubbish, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 27/04/2018 by floroy1942
As It Used To Be

I remember when I was a boy in England the weather was a lot different to today. We had some snow in Winter, but not a lot, and Spring came with the trees and plants blossoming all over the place. We went for a walk in the forests to see the wild flowers. When Summer came we had sunshine for most months as the temperatures rose to their middle twenties. In Autumn the trees went from green to red and brown as they shed their leaves in preparation for winter.

We have never seen weather like this in the beginning of Spring with floods, snow in some parts of the world, and Summers so hot we are can barely stand the temperatures. Now all that has changed over the years as the contamination of the atmosphere gets worse as years go by. 

The woods and forests in England are all but gone and this is changing the climate. Farmers have cut down the trees that are giving us oxygen to get extra land to grow crops. It’s a tragedy. In all parts of the world forests are being hacked down to give us more farmland and it is destroying the planet.

The amount of vehicles on our roads are slowly clogging up the atmosphere, but no-one takes any notice. Governments are not taking this seriously! In a few years we will have electric cars and lorries rolling across our countries, but will this solve the problem? I doubt it! It may take 100 years to get rid of the poisonous atmosphere, but will we still be around on this planet. I do not know what the future brings, but it will certainly change our lives.

Currently the oceans are full of plastic and that is destroying the fish that some countries feed on. There is a plan to clear plastic from the oceans but that will take years and years, and all the while people abandon plastic on beaches which end up in the the sea. There is a movement to ban plastic for all time and make it reusable. But how long will that take, and it will still end up in the oceans.

Currently the oceans are clogged with plastic all across the globe, and if we are not careful it will be the end of us all.

Roy.

 

It’s Time For Some Drastic Action

Posted in America, Britain, Conservation, Environment, European Union, Modern World, News, Nuclear Proliferation, Politics, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 16/11/2017 by floroy1942

20170805_LDD001_0Underlying the troubles across the world are we headed for a nuclear war? There are tensions between Russia and the USA, not to mention the threat of North Korea which is the most dangerous country on the planet. I doubt if the Russians will start tossing nuclear weapons at the USA, but the threat of North Korea is by far the biggest. It is doubtful that Kim Yong Un will start a war with the USA for his country will be totally annihilated if it happens.

But who can tell what is going through his mind with threats passing back and forth. He now has nuclear weapons that will reach a great deal of the USA, and if he fires one at the USA, Trumps reply will be catastrophic for the whole country.

A lot of people will suffer because the nuclear radioactivity will blanket most of world and many people will suffer.

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Not only do we have the threat of nuclear war but people are dying from malnutrition in places like Africa. Some world countries are sending food to Africa, but it is nowhere enough. People are dying from hunger in many countries and it doesn’t seem to stop.

We have billionaires who stash their money in many places across the world and they should be made to help these poor people. How on earth could someone save billions?

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Traffic around the world is also one of the biggest problems in the world today. Watch the news and you will see that many Chinese cities, and many in India are suffering from major contamination of the air. These are not the only places in the world that have smog so thick you can see only 100 meters.

naam-ice-02

There is no doubt that we must clear up these problems if the world is to survive. Temperatures are rising all across the world and they have decimated the north and south poles, for the ice is slowly melting and this could make the seas rise to unprecedented levels that would flood areas like Florida and many others. We have unprecedented temperatures in areas like Africa and the Middle East among others where people can no longer live.

carbon_cycle

All this due to the carbon dioxide that is circling the Earth and preventing the excess heat from dissipating in to space.  If this world is to survive we must do something about it, for it will get worse as time goes by. By maybe 2050 this planet will be unlivable and human kind will cease to exist.

Roy.

Save Our Planet

Posted in America, Britain, Environment, European Union, Life in the Universe, News, Oceans, Toxic Waste, Traffic, United Nations with tags , , , , on 07/10/2017 by floroy1942

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The weather this year has been the worst in history, and I am afraid we are heading for more of the same next year. The number of hurricanes to hit the the south of the United States and the Caribbean islands has been the worst on record. Who knows if this will be repeated next year and in the years to come. Not only has the Caribbean been hit by these tremendous storms, but other parts of the world have been too, and its not over yet.

An analysis of the past 167 years has found that we have never had such a year as this.  No 30-year period in history has seen this many major hurricanes, this many days of those huge hurricanes spinning in the Atlantic, or this much overall energy generated by those powerful storms. But who will say what the future holds? Scientists expect to see planet climate changes because warmer ocean water is fuel for hurricanes. The Atlantic hurricane season was more intense than normal in 2003, 2004, 2005, 2008, 2010, 2012 and 2016. The 2005 season, which included Katrina, Rita and Wilma caused major havoc in coastal towns in the Caribbean and the southern United States.

Fuelled by warmer than normal ocean temperatures and ideal wind conditions, September 2017 had more days with major hurricanes spinning and more overall hurricane energy expelled than any month on record, according to Colorado State University hurricane researcher Phil Klotzbach. Harvey spawned record rainfall. Irma had record high winds in the open Atlantic. And Maria hit the U.S. stronger than the earlier two.

All this is due, according to the scientists, because of our continued contamination of the planet’s atmosphere. We have created a cloud of contaminates that circle the globe and stop the heat from dissipating into space. This is one of the reasons the Earth is getting warmer and temperatures are souring. In certain areas of the globe the temperatures are exceeding 50 centigrade, and as we continue to contaminate the atmosphere with our cars and lorries it will get even worse.

If we do not stop using diesel and petrol engines, and cut down the emissions from factories, we will be in dire straits. As the air gets more and more contaminated mankind will cease to exists on this planet.

Roy.

Electric Cars – Not A Good Idea

Posted in America, Australia, Britain, Canada, China, European Union, Germany, Health, News, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 04/10/2017 by floroy1942

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Electric cars are coming to the forefront of the future, and what is to become of them? They seem to be a good idea in reducing the air pollution around the world, but is it a good idea? How on earth are we supposed to provide sufficient electricity for them.

We are already overloading our power stations with all the electronic gadgets we have, so how are we supposed to provide electricity for cars by the millions. We will need to build thousands of new power stations around the world to provide the necessary power. And what of the charging stations for these cars? They would need to be built by the million so people can get where they are going.

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To me this is not the answer, for a catastrophic building programme will need to be initialised to provide all the power that is required by these machines. This will cost billions for every country if it is initiated. Mind you, we could have charging systems in our own home, but imagine what that would cost in electricity bills.

I agree that such cars would cut down the pollution of the world’s atmosphere, and we could in maybe a hundred years get the atmosphere down to what it used to be and save our world from extinction.

Without a doubt, petrol, and especially diesel cars have been polluting the atmosphere like never before in our history. Cities and towns around the world have so much pollution from these vehicles that the general public are suffering. We have to do something about it, but I am afraid the electric car is not the solution. To have everyone driving around in an electric car, van or lorry would cripple the economy of every nation on earth.

The real solution would be to modify our current engines so they don’t contaminate the atmosphere. I think more work needs to be done to make our current engines less polluting. Doing away with diesel cars would be a big step forward, and by modifying our petrol engines so they don’t pollute the atmosphere would also be a big step forward.

Roy

Do You Believe In Climate Change

Posted in America, Australia, Britain, Conservation, Environment, Europe, Health, News, Oceans, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 06/04/2017 by floroy1942

Right Or Wrong?

Climate change is a touchy subject these days and many people do not believe in it. But the facts speak for themselves when you consider the massive flooding of countries like Peru, Australia and New Zealand, India and Bangladesh among others. Also we have drastic droughts and storms over different parts of the world. These things were unheard of in the past.

The weather patterns of the world have changed drastically over the past thirty years with drought, floods, massive hurricanes and typhoons, and a rising sea level. Some deny that these problems are manmade and are just a natural cycle in our world. The truth is that it is all manmade, caused by the heavy pollution we are sending into the atmosphere.

It would be difficult to ignore the facts when you consider such disasters with so many people killed and the loss of their homes. To me the facts cannot be denied for we are heading into the worst disasters of our world.

The big question is why? Is it a natural cycle or due to mankind’s ignorance to the state of our world. The toxic levels of our atmosphere are steadily rising due to our careless attitude to the climate, and as we go on the situation will only get worse.

Since the turn of the twentieth century we have been steadily increasing the contamination of the world’s atmosphere. It is said that last year we exceeded the possibility of the Earth to regenerate the atmosphere by August, and for the rest of the year  we added more and more contamination with the Earth unable to handle it. Even our oceans are being contaminated at an alarming rate through various means. So from this you can conclude that the planet and the atmosphere is getting worse year on year. When is it likely to stop?

Mankind is heading for extinction if we keep this up and in perhaps a hundred years we will cease to exist, because we have poisoned our atmosphere to the extent where all life on the planet will cease to exist.

I know that many people will consider this to be a load of rubbish, but you have to consider the condition of our world today, and imagine what it will be like in a tens of  years time if we continue living as we do.

The biggest contaminators of our atmosphere are vehicles and factories that push out toxic fumes daily. With over a billion vehicles on the planet and an untold number of factories the situation will get worse year on year. Some countries may see in twenty of thirty years time people walking around with gas masks, for already in China people wear face masks to stop the pollution from entering their lungs. This will soon spread to the west in some cities if we do nothing.

Already places like London, Paris, and in particular cities in the Middle East are suffering from heavy pollution and you can bet your life it will spread. The sad thing is, mankind seems oblivious to the spread of air contamination, and you can bet your life it will come and bite us in the backside.

At the moment people are living up to their eighties, nineties and beyond but that will soon change as the pollution of our atmosphere extends. You can make all the excuses you like but it will not change things unless we do something about it. There are so many people who believe that climate change is a myth, but in time they will see the truth as we are forced into taking measures to protect our health. It is not too late to do something about it but in ten or twenty years time it will be.

Governments have to start drastically reducing the number of cars in the world, and ban diesel which is the worst polluter. Factories must start using fuel that does not contaminate the atmosphere so much, but first people must be aware of the danger they are in for this to work. We all rely on governments to do the right thing, but sadly this is not the case for corrupt politicians are everywhere and their one aim in life is to be as rich as possible.

It is time for the world to made aware of the danger we are in and for the people to do something about it.

Roy.

COP 21 – Finally Agreement, But What Now?

Posted in America, Britain, Conservation, Environment, European Union, Health, Modern World, News, Nuclear, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , on 13/12/2015 by floroy1942
COP 21 - Our Last Chance?

COP 21 – Our Last Chance?

It is good to see that almost two hundred countries have finally reached agreement on a programme to limit climate change, but will it be as empty a promise as all the others? I hope not, because the future of mankind on this planet is at stake. For twenty years nations of the world have come together in an effort to agree measures to halt climate change, but sadly all have failed until now.

Although nations agreed to take action in past conferences, none of the resolutions reached have been successfully acted upon. This makes me think that many nations will once again renege on the agreements reached this time. Why, because the necessary changes will be very expensive.

It Doesn't Grow On Trees

It Doesn’t Grow On Trees

Even most rich countries will be hard-pressed to make the necessary changes, but the majority of poorer countries simply cannot. So it remains to be seen if the rich countries can assist these poorer nations in achieving the goals set out by the conference, even though a binding agreement has been reached for them to provide $65B each to assist them. Personally, I doubt it.

Life today is all about money, and most countries will be loath to give away their riches to some poor country that cannot even feed its people, let alone make the huge changes required to stop global warming. Even if the money is given, without proper control there is no guarantee that it will all be spent for the purpose to which it was intended. As usual, the big problem is corruption, and much of it will disappear into the offshore bank accounts of corrupt politicians.

Self Explanatory

Self Explanatory

The human race has, for the greater part, become self-centred and greedy over the past fifty years, and all most people think about today is their own well-being and riches. They don’t give a damn about tomorrow and the kind of existence they are passing on to future generations. So long as they have a comfortable life and ridiculous amounts of money in their bank account that is all that counts. Even if they have a billion dollars they still want more, and to hell with the starving millions and climate change.

To me this shows a complete inadequacy in human intelligence, and unfortunately, unless there are drastic changes in our thinking mankind is doomed on this planet. It is absolutely essential that all countries and all people begin to cooperate and share the cost of changing the way we live to improve the environment.

Pollution Rise

Pollution Rise

Over the last century with the rise in technology and manufacturing, we are steadily destroying our world to the extent where if it continues, all life will end on the planet within a few generations. We are decimating the wildlife, poisoning the ground and seas that give us life, and are rapidly approaching a point in man’s history where it will be too late to go back. This is why the agreements reached at this conference are so vital to the continued existence of mankind on the Earth. Sadly few people can see how desperate the situation is, and are loath to change their comfortable lifestyle.

Main CO2 Sources

Main CO2 Sources

The two biggest polluters are fossil fuel burning power stations and the vehicles on our roads, which now number over a billion world-wide. The conference has agreed that a significant reduction in the use of fossil fuels is desperately required to slow down the contamination of our atmosphere by CO2. To limit the biggest impact will mean reducing the number of fossil fuel burning power stations and a reduction in the number of vehicles on our roads.

Today in China cities are on red alert for atmospheric contamination caused by the many coal-burning factories they have, and to save the situation many have been temporarily shut down.

China - If We Do Not Change This Could Be All Of Us!

China – If We Do Not Change This Could Be All Of Us!

This is a real indication that we need to stop using coal and other fossil fuels as a source of power and find a cleaner alternative. There are many alternatives people will say, like nuclear and wind energy, but to change to these sources will be astronomically expensive for any nation.

Wind power in particular is not as efficient as many think, for the generators are extremely costly and prone to breakdown, also relying on the weather which may or may not be suitable. Light winds are not enough and conversely, strong winds require them to be shut down to avoid major damage.

Alternatives

Alternatives

Nuclear power is the best option, but then you have the problem of disposing of the nuclear waste. Our best hope is that scientists can come up with a completely new method of power generation that is safe. I am not holding my breath on that one!

With the resources we have it is clear that a massive amount of time and money needs to be spent to rid ourselves of the plague that is fossil fuel. It must be done as quickly as possible, for the longer we wait the harder it will be. I just hope that all the rhetoric passed back and forth at the conference will result in us finally saving the future of our planet and species.

Roy.

Air Pollution, Global Warming and Water Contamination Versus Survival

Posted in America, Environment, Europe, Health, Toxic Waste, UK, USA with tags , , , , , , on 20/03/2012 by floroy1942

For many years the dangers of global warming have been trumpeted by scientists as the major threat to the continued existence of the human species on Earth. Now however, we are facing much more than this single danger. A new OECD report has highlighted the perils of not only global warming, but now air pollution and water contamination also. New estimates of the discharge of harmful minute particles, called particulates, indicate there is a serious danger of mass deaths before 2050. This is due to their steady increase in the air we breathe.

Los Angeles Smog

Naturally, those living in major cities and towns across  the world are most at risk, but the pollution is moving outside these areas and will eventually effect whole swathes of countryside too.  The report estimates there could be as many as 3.6 million premature deaths due to air pollution in countries like India and China, due no doubt to their increase in wealth and becoming major emerging markets in the last twenty years. This tempo of change is sure to increase in future decades.

The West is also likely to see a large increase in premature death due to its large aging population, so it follows that we can see the average life expectancy age falling once again instead of rising further as was thought.

Helping to Slowly Kill Us All?

For the last twenty years or so, governments, particularly western governments, have known about the necessity of reducing greenhouse gas emissions in the world, and some have set ambitious targets that will never be reached. For this reason it must come as a shock to find this is not the only problem. In the report they have been criticised for giving tax breaks on diesel fuel because it gives off less greenhouse gases, but the report highlights that the particulate emissions of diesel fuel is just as dangerous, though more to human health than the well-being of the planet. When this fuel is burnt in a vehicle engine minute particles of carbon, among other things, is ejected into the atmosphere and forms an invisible cloud that we breathe in constantly. In many scientists’ view this is far more damaging to human health than smoking, due purely to the amounts, and length of time, they are inhaled.

Air pollution comes from many sources and each one is having a deadly effect on us, and the planet we live on. Our enormous appetite for energy, coupled with our present methods of transportation, will eventually be our undoing in decades to come.  With the ever increasing demands for energy, and despite all measures taken by responsible governments world-wide, the levels of greenhouse gas emissions will increase by 50% by 2050. Our current pitiful efforts to curb these pollutants will be pointless.

New York Light Show

Walk the night-time streets of any city in the world and see how many skyscraper office blocks are fully lit at three o’clock in the morning. Look at how many shops leave all their lights on every night, and how many huge illuminated advertisements line the streets. It may look pretty, but its wasted energy on an inhuman scale the like of which the world has never seen.  And still we need more and more!!

London Light Show

The big problem is, we cannot afford this massive wastage of energy any more than we can afford the increases that are being demanded year on year. Somewhere, sometime, it has to stop or man will be no more than a fading memory on planet Earth in 100 years time. Remember all the sci-fi films showing the deserted rotting remains of our once great civilization?

And what about our polluting cars? Current estimates put the number of cars and light trucks on the planet’s roads at 806 million and this figure is set to double in the next thirty years! The United States alone has 254.4 million registered passenger cars on the road.

The Lungs Of A City Baby

Each one is contributing to not only greenhouse gases, but also pollutants like particulates. If the current trend continues we will not be able to breathe outside our own homes. I have seen sci-fi  movies where everyone walks outside with a mask in order to breathe. could this really become a reality? If current trends continue, it looks like it will!

Another point raised by the OECD report is water contamination, which naturally enough should be close to our hearts as we  all need it to survive. The contamination of our water supply is increasing at a steady rate and it seems we are unable, or unwilling to do anything about it. The biggest polluter is strangely enough not the oil companies as most people think, but the farmer.

Contaminated Water

Farmers cannot stay in business these days without using mountains of fertilizer on their ground. A hundred years ago the population levels were such that farmers sowed and harvested one crop a year in a field, now that has become two, and in many cases three. The ground that feeds us has lost so much of its natural nutrients that these have to be supplemented with growth chemicals, otherwise nothing grows there anymore. All these chemicals find their way into the ground water, and eventually the streams and rivers that feed off it. And then we drink it!!! It is a pattern that has developed across the whole of the 1st world and many 2nd world countries too.

Another point to make is that we already have large areas of the world suffering from severe drought conditions brought on by changes in the world’s weather patterns. These areas are set to increase as water becomes a more valuable commodity than gold. It is estimated that if we do not find a cleaner method of producing energy, global warming will increase the demand for water by more than half. In the meantime, we are slowly poisoning what we have. Doesn’t seem to make sense does it? 

Too Many Cars

In an effort to reduce harmful carbon emissions from vehicles, it has been suggested by many that the answer is biofuels. Sorry, but it ain’t so folks! According to the OECD report, divergence into biofuels will have a major negative effect on the world in general. Not only will it use up vast tracts of land required for food production, but will also increase to a great extent water usage and promote more water contamination.

The report states that governments should start taking measures to reduce energy consumption, air and water pollution with immediate effect. The report suggests removing state subsidies on such things as diesel, fossil fuels and water to deter wastage in these three areas. These may be a step in the right direction, but you can be sure that much tougher, and altogether unpopular measures will need to be taken if we are still to be around in 100 or 150 years. There is little doubt that this ‘Golden Age’ of man must come to an end – and soon.

Roy.

Plastic May Kill You In Years To Come

Posted in Britain, England, Environment, Europe, Modern World, Pacific, Plastic, Plastic Rubbish, Toxic Waste, USA with tags , , , , on 30/01/2012 by floroy1942

Now that’s a bold statement if ever there was one, and I am sure more than a few people will be wondering what the hell is going on. Well, it would seem that plastic rubbish on our beaches is not the only problem we are facing, for scientists today have made yet another discovery that could have a far reaching effect on mankind, well, our offspring actually. It all revolves around the weekly washing (or daily if you have kids)!

The Weekly Wash – Not So Innocent

A group of scientists have discovered that a new, possibly deadly substance is getting into the environment from our weekly wash. Every day millions of people put their dirty clothes in the washing machine and think no more about it. Its a perfectly normal occurrence, and who thinks about what goes down the drain during the operation. Its just dirty water with some detergent in it, and anyway, the water company takes care of it, right!

From the latest research it seems that is not the end of the story, because, if some of the garments you washed contain man-made fibres i.e. polyester, acrylic, or polyamides (nylon), that water from the washing machine contains so-called ‘microplastics’.

Microfibres – The Hidden Menace

It seems these are tiny fibres of plastic, less than a millimetre long, that detach from this type of garment during the wash cycle, and a single item can lose more than 1,900 fibres per wash. Via the drains and water treatment plants (where applicable) these fibres end up in rivers or the sea where they are being eaten by fish and other creatures. Because they are so small, they even end up in the stomachs of plankton which of course is the main diet of many species of fish and mammals. Naturally, not only fish are contaminated with this fibre, but also land animals that get their water from rivers.

The dangerous part is that their small size allows them to be not only ingested by e.g. the fish, but once in the stomach they enter the bloodstream, and hence the blood of the host. It has been found to accumulate in the cells of fish during research by Dr. Mark Brown of the National Centre For Ecological Analysis ans Synthesis (NCEAS) in The States, and Prof. Richard Thomson from the University of Plymouth in the UK.

By Comparison, A Minor Problem

The team tested seawater from various points around the globe and the sewage outlets of many cities and found that the contamination was strongest near large population centres as you would expect. Testing of water from washing machines proved the link with items of clothing produced using man-made fibres.

It should be obvious that when the fish or animals are contaminated with this plastic, it is already in the food chain. Should it have the same effect on human physiology, i.e. get locked up in our cells, who knows what harm this will cause to our bodies. Whatever happens, it’s a fairly safe bet we have not heard the last of this problem.

Roy

The Curse Of The Plastic Bag Returns

Posted in Atlantic, Britain, England, Environment, Europe, Government, Illegal Dumping, Insanity, Modern World, Oceans, Pacific, Parliament, Plastic, Plastic Rubbish, Toxic Waste, UK, USA with tags , , , , , , on 29/07/2011 by floroy1942

Despite government campaigns, environmental group actions, and other publicity on the dangers of supermarket plastic bags over the past five years, their use is once again on the rise.

People are turning back to the ‘one-use’ bag instead of the multi-use ones now available. The consumption of these items has risen from 6.1 billion in 2009 to 6.4 billion last year. Not a significant rise you might think, and certainly better than the 10.7 billion bags used in 2006.

The Infamous Plastic Bag

Why shoppers are going back to their old ways and ignoring the danger to the environment is to date a mystery. It would seem people no longer believe in doing what they can to save the planet from pollution, despite the discovery of the Plastic Islands in our oceans. Recycling Minister Lord Henley has suggested that if the current situation continues there may be need for legislation. Personally, I would think the sooner the better!

Although this would not solve the problem completely, for we still use plastic rubbish bin liners for example, it would go a long way to cutting down on the mountains of plastic that are currently polluting our world.

Plastic Bin Liners In Use

This information shows clearly that people are not willing to change their ways, and the supermarkets and retailers too are not interested, despite earlier promises. Therefore I would say legislation is imperative. Laws must be passed to outlaw plastic bags once and for all time from the High Street, and replace them with the old-time paper or cloth bag.

Environmentally Harmless And Recyclable

Paper bags were good enough for generations following Francis Wolle’s invention of the first paper bag making machine in 1852, and everyone used them prior to the introduction of plastic bags by Swedish engineer Sten Gustaf Thulin in the early 1960’s. Since that day the number of plastic bags in circulation has soured and billions are used every day throughout the world.

The largest users by far are the Chinese, but they at least are taking positive steps to cut their usage. Laws introduced in 2008 banned single-use bags and has received a positive response from shoppers.

One side effect of getting rid of billions of plastic bags will be the huge saving made in oil from which they are made. It is estimated the measures taken by China have reduced its oil consumption by around 3 million tonnes of oil per annum. That’s an awful lot of oil! So, what if the ban was total and  world-wide?

Animal Life And Plastic

In order to cut down the massive pollution caused by these items, it is clear that plastic shopping bags should be consigned to history as one of man’s greatest environmental mistakes. Their use, reusable or not, can no longer be justified in today’s world. We have enough pollution problems, and let’s face it, would we really bemoan the loss of the plastic bag when we have so many environmentally friendly alternatives? I think not!

My wife and I keep several cloth shopping bags in the boot of the car and never accept the plastic alternative from the supermarket. It is such a small step, but if more people did that we would not need the plastic bag any more. Obviously, many are either too lazy to take such steps, or just don’t care, which is a shame. It is for this reason I believe legislation in this area is desperately needed.

Headed For The Plastic Island

Shoppers, like most other people, always look to the easiest option and don’t care what happens so long as it doesn’t intrude into own little ‘world’. Perhaps though we should all stop to think about what we are doing to our planet for the sake of our children.

What we do today will have a great impact on their lives!

Food for thought perhaps?

Associated Posts:

https://floroy1942.wordpress.com/2010/02/26/welcome-to-plastic-island/

https://floroy1942.wordpress.com/2010/03/07/the-plastic-island-part-2/

Roy.

Fukushima – A Disaster Waiting In The Wings?

Posted in Environment, Modern World, Nuclear, Oceans, Radioactive Waste, Toxic Waste with tags , , , , , , , on 13/04/2011 by floroy1942

Should we be concerned at the latest news of a hike in the severity level at the Fukushima nuclear generating plant to 7, bringing it on a par with Chernobyl?

Chernobyl Reactor Building

We can all remember what happened at the Russian plant, but the experts tell us there is no danger of a repeat. Now that is reassuring news, certainly to the Japanese, and probably for the rest of us too.

The whole episode however leaves me with some questions, most important of which is, why was a nuclear plant built on the coast in an earthquake/tsunami zone? Reactor One was opened in July 1967, and since then another five have been built on the same site.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/Noqk78bjE-Q

The Cause Of A Tsunami

It is safe to assume that we did not know as much in 1967 as we do now about earthquakes and the effects, but even so, it seems to me the Japanese were taking a big chance in building such a facility right on the sea shore.

I can well imagine their desire to have a ready supply of water for cooling the reactor, but then surely, better precautions should have been taken to protect the installation against the possibility of a tsunami.

The Tsunami Strikes

History has shown us on many occasions that earthquakes under the sea cause tsunami’s, so it should be obvious, even in 1967, that the site would be prone to just such an event.

I freely admit, I am no nuclear scientist or structural engineer, but it seems to me that building such a plant on the coast at Fukushima, knowing the possibilities, should have received more attention.

The main difference between Chernobyl and Fukushima is that in the former accident the reactor vessel ruptured, releasing large amounts of radioactivity into the atmosphere, whereas in the latter, this did not happen and the reactor vessel remained intact. Contrary to popular opinion, there is never a chance of a nuclear explosion at a nuclear power plant, even if meltdown does occur.

http://www.youtube.com/embed/Z69rtx3YlE0

Fukushima Reactor

Each reactor at the Fukushima plant has a secondary containment vessel which is designed to prevent the release of radioactive particles into the atmosphere even in the event of a reactor containment vessel breach. This was not the case at Chernobyl and indeed, very few Russian plants had such a safety facility (lessons learned).

Furthermore, The Chernobyl reactor was ‘fired up’ at the time of the accident while experiments were carried out on the power generators for the emergency cooling system. At Fukushima the reactor shut-down automatically when the earthquake was detected.

Typical Reactor Cooling System Generator

It would seem that the problems began at Fukushima when the various backup cooling pumps, that supply the core with water to keep it from overheating, lost power when the tsunami destroyed the generators supplying the pumps. It would appear that perhaps more protection should have been given to these vital components.

Fukushima Damage

The disaster at Fukushima, though of natural causes, does indicate that more attention must be given to the siting of nuclear power plants, especially in earthquake prone countries around the famous ‘Ring of Fire’ bordering the Pacific. It indicates that all nuclear plants should be inspected to see what improvements can be made to the operating systems when a natural disaster strikes, and most specifcally, protection of the cooling apparatus.

Anyone wishing for a simple straight-forward explanation of the events at Fukushima should visit the following site:

http://bravenewclimate.com/2011/03/13/fukushima-simple-explanation/

Its all well and good for armchair ‘experts’ to give their opinions, and as we all know hindsight is a wonderful thing, but I should hope that some valuable lessons have been learned from this disaster and steps are taken to see such an event is never repeated.

Fukushima Heros

In the meantime, we should not forget the brave men and women who have been working tirelessly to prevent a major disaster at Fukushima at the risk of their own well-being. I salute you!

One thing is sure, we are a long way from doing away with our nuclear power plants despite all the hype that has been generated, for until the scientists come up with something better we are stuck with it. At this moment in time we have no other way of keeping up with the ever increasing demands for power.

Roy. 

People and Money – Transocean Bonuses

Posted in Atlantic, Environment, Health, Insanity, Obama, Oceans, President, Toxic Waste, USA with tags , , , , , , , , , on 04/04/2011 by floroy1942

 When it comes to money, some people have no soul, and certainly no conscience. During last week this fact became abundantly clear by the bonuses to be given to executives of  Transocean, who along with BP and Halliburton were responsible for the Deepwater Horizon oil rig disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. 

 http://www.youtube.com/embed/JfOinnQeHIY

Deepsea Horizon Finally Sinks

The most incredible fact is they claim it’s because 2010 was their ‘best year for safety’! This is hard to swallow, apart from the fact that 11 men died on the flaming rig when it exploded, the coastline of 4 States was contaminated by 49.9 million barrels of oil, and the ecological effect of the spill is yet to be seen. The spill caused hardship and damage in the billions of dollars, but then, the companies don’t have to foot the full bill do they?

Steve Newman - CEO Transocean

According to the company, there had been a “drop in the number of recorded incidents and their potential severity”. This, the Board claimed was justification for the large bonuses to be paid out to its top executives.

That I find disgraceful, immoral  and totally unacceptable!

The Extent Of The Contamination

In my opinion, President Obama should immediately levy a 100% tax on these payouts, for these people do not deserve to get richer at the expense of other people’s misery. The payouts could be put to better use compensating those who have lost their livelihood. The full scale of the disaster will not be known for many years, and for sure, the local tourist industry suffered greatly, plus the people who live along the shores contaminated by the oil spill. 

http://www.youtube.com/embed/Qk14WxuV8wU

It just goes to show you how despicable and low people can go when it comes to money!

Roy.

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