What the Frack

The first video is the hydraulic fracturing process according to the gas and oil companies who are doing it.  Basically they drill a mile below the surface, which is far, far below the water source. Once the pipe is passed the water, they coat the steel pipe with cement. Additional cases may cemented to the pipe to prevent leakage. I’m not exactly sure what kind of logic these people are using, but I just want to point out that if you walk down a sidewalk, you’re bound to see more than a few cracks in it and those cracks are found on something just walk or bike on. What kind of permanent solution will cement  be. But it’s just my thought. Traditional drilling stops at what they call ‘the kick off point’. At this point, hydraulic fracturing curves to go horizontal. This gives fractures the ability to drill several sites from one pad. The drill pipe is then removed and replaced with casing, which is cemented in place. Something they call a perforating gun will go off to fracture the first of the rock and put hole in the casing and interestingly the cement to let the gas through. Next they pump a ‘few’ chemicals into the ground. They say a few and then have a picture of 30 different pumps, but to be fair the ‘few’ chemicals only make up .5 percent of the hydraulic formula. But again, to be fair, it would be well to consider that 3 million to 5 million gallons of water are pumped into these sites.  The ‘few’ chemicals are mainly for lubrication and keeping the rocks apart to let the gas come through. They plug that section of the pipe and use the perforating gun again to fracture the next portion of the rock. They repeat this for however long, sometimes for several miles. Once they’re done they cement the pipes, remove their pad and according to this video leave it just as they found it or better. I guess this is how they define better. There is a clear cut off point from where they fracked and what they left alone.

http://money.cnn.com/2011/12/09/news/economy/epa_fracking_wyoming/index.htm

Or I guess I would take the scenic route just to be able to see this beautiful landscape also.

http://www.uswateralliance.org/tag/hydro-fracking/

The water with the ‘few’ chemicals either gets recycled at another site or gets disposed according to U.S. regulations.

 

(This video doesn’t have sound.)

This video suggests the process presents more problems than it really solves. This video shares my concern about the cement not being the more surefire answer to keeping the toxins out of the ground water. It also points out that when the flowback, the water with the ‘few’ chemicals that has to be recycled or properly disposed of, is stored they put it in lined pits. These lined pits, shockingly, aren’t always lined properly and the toxic water leaks to the ground water.

Here is a web site of all the ‘few’ chemicals they use in the fracking solutions, what they are used for and other things that the chemicals are found in.

Advertisements

Shell

Shell is planning to drill in the arctic. Maybe you already knew this and maybe you didn’t. Greenpeac partnered with Yes, Lab and set up Arctic Ready, a fake website similar to Shell’s, and came up with Let’s Go fake ad campaign to protest Shell drilling in the Alaskan seas.

Shell’s focus is primarly on Beaufort and Chukchi Seas, which has an estimated 26 billion barrels of recoverable oil and 130 trillion cubic feet of natural gas.

The site was set up about a month ago. I first saw an ‘ad’ about two weeks ago on another blog and it mentioned that it was a failed Shell campaign. That was a misconception because the site looks so similar to Shell’s website.

http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/07/18/shell-arctic-ready-hoax-greenpeace_n_1684222.html#slide=more239554

Greenpeace said that the campaign wasn’t very expensive compared some of the others they have put on. Arctic Ready was driven by supporters.

As part of the website, people were allowed to create their own ‘ads’. Some people were furious about being lied to, but even after the news got out that it was a hoax there were hundreds of ‘ads’ still being made.

I got this from part of an article on Forbes:

Kash: What about the backlash, those who see this as impersonation — and a violation of trademark law — rather than parody, such as those calling you villains?

Nichols: What is a hoax? The idea of a hoax is a group that says it’s something that it’s not. Shell saying it can safely drill in the Arctic and abide by clean air rules and environmental standards is a hoax. Shell is not doing that. Note the rig getting away from it. People wringing their hands over what is an obviously satirical campaign that rubs them the wrong way for a few seconds before they realize it’s fake pales in comparison with what Shell is doing, the hoax they’re perpetuating on the American public. It’s a creative campaign and we’re giving our supporters a voice to tell Shell what they think.

“Arctic Ready” is Shell’s motto. All we’ve done is take their facts and highlighted them. It’s identity correction. It’s important that you don’t lie. You take the facts and put them out without Shell’s spin. They’ve greenwashed their page. We’ve done the opposite. We took the language they used and flipped it. Instead of saying we’re environmentally friendly, we made it that Shell’s excited to do this crazy stuff in the Arctic. And I’m sure they are. We’re just heightening that part of it. It’s like in Spinal Tap where they turn the amp to 11.

My thoughts on this are that this is pretty genius; I especially like the ‘ad’ idea because everyone had a voice in it. I do wish that some where on the site it had said clearly that it was made by Greenpeace or not an official Shell site. That way they could just blame people for their own misconceptions. However, if you take a look around, you can see where Nichols was talking about taking Shell’s fluffy words and making them into the truth. When I first saw the site and didn’t yet know that it was a spoof, I kept thinking, ‘Gosh, it sure is weird that Shell is saying this. They must be really confident that America won’t care enough to make a difference.’ I was skeptical, but I thought that Shell probably knew enough about America’s love affair with cheap, convenient, available gas. Sadly, that actually seems to be the case because it still plans to drill and the most recent article I found, which is 5 days old, said they’re not even going to sue.

Recently, they have started shutting down Shell gas stations in the UK.

I think both of these things are great, but  I like when people stand up for what they believe. It’s something that rarely happens, so when it does, no matter what I usually like it. I like the gas station idea less because it’s forcing their beliefs on others, but if people would stop being so selfish, people wouldn’t need to take such drastic measures.

As far as the ad campagin goes, I think it’s awesome. You can look at the gallery here.  They had a contest winner, but you’re still welcome to make ads. There are 367 pages, last time I checked. I didn’t go through them all, but here are my favorites:

There isn’t a whole lot of hands on approaches for this problem, but the best thing you can do is stop buying gas from Shell. If it’s not them, it will probably be somebody else, but we’ll cross that bridge when we get there.

There are several petitions going around. The decision isn’t up to Shell, but up to Obama and the EPA, so that’s who the petitions are addressed to. Here is a link to one, but there are several others.

Education is important too. Research this problem and why it’s such a big deal. Tell your friends and anyone else who will listen. Let’s GO!

Garden Planter DIY

Planters, besides the plants obviously, are the essence of a garden. They help define the garden. If you guys are thinking the same thing I was when I started this little search then you’re probably thinking that there isn’t much exciting things to say about a bunch of terracotta planters. While terracotta plants are nice and it may be some people’s thing, it’s simple and minimalistic which I’m typically a fan of, but this is just one thing that I feel like gives me a chance to be creative and I want to take advantage of it. The world is our oyster people and it can be a free oyster.

That being said, all of these are meant to be upcycled ideas. The garden is meant to be a natural place and I think a rather eclectic place.  I picked ideas that were made out common things that can be found in dumpsters, in parking lots (I’ll let you know where they are usually common) without having to pay a dime. I didn’t make any of these myself, I’ll give credit where it’s due and if they require more than one step then I’ll make sure there is a tutorial to go with them.

Tires. Sometimes you can find these on the side on the road, but usually they’re too battered to use, but sometimes you can find a decent tire on the side of the road. Although, businesses are supposed to dispose of these properly, I have found one in a dumpster. If all else fails, there are used tire stores. We have one in town and it sells them for $8 or you may be able to go to a mechanic, tell them what your needing and why and they may give to you for free or at a price.

Tire 1

http://www.recapturedcharm.com/2010/06/ever-tire-of-flowers.html

Tire 2

http://media-cache2.pinterest.com/upload/252553491573770707_AqqWNaYO.jpg

Tire 3

http://www.craftylittlegnome.com/2011/08/how-to-make-inside-out-tire-planters.html

http://www.studiogblog.com/plants-natives/kitchen/diy-recycled-tire-garden-planters/

Shipping Pallets. They’re everywhere. Take a walk behind any store or in an alley behind strip mall or something and you can find them. If all else fails, walk in and ask for one.

Shipping Pallet 1

http://lifeonthebalcony.com/how-to-turn-a-pallet-into-a-garden/

http://themicrogardener.com/20-creative-ways-to-upcycle-pallets-in-your-garden/

This site has tons of ideas for pallets in a garden. Sometimes you can find the DIY’s by clicking the picture and sometimes there is a link.

Shoes. These aren’t technically everywhere, but they’re not hard to find. I’ve also found these behind store alleys, thrift store, apartment and dorm dumpsters. Your closet?

Shoe 1

http://mydamagedpostcard.blogspot.com/2011/05/upcycled-boot-planter.html Has steps that could be used for the rest of these.

Shoe 2

I find the fact that they’re using cacti as plants for these shoes ironic and somewhat symbolic.

http://www.greendiary.com/entry/hot-stilettos-upcycled-into-elegant-flower-planters/  I couldn’t find any DIY’s for this, but http://www.thedailygreen.com/living-green/recycled-tupperware-clock#fbIndex1 has the best description I could find.

Shoe 3

http://www.flickr.com/photos/cuttlefish/4494062162/

Shoe 4

http://instagr.am/p/K02FeoSBi_/

Books. I think obsession with books is becoming apparent. They’re very aesthetic.  Ruined books can be found at thrift stores or the discounted section at a book store, especially the dumpsters. Dorm dumpsters may also have them. Please don’t ruin good books to make these, I’ll be heart broken.

Book 1

http://greenweddingshoes.com/diy-book-planter-with-succulents/

Plastic Bottles. These aren’t always the cutest planters ever, but they can be and plastic almost never decomposes and they’re hard to recycle which makes these the environmentally friendly choice other than not using them to begin with. You can find these everywhere. If you don’t drink pop then they can found in work place, gas station, dorm and other trash cans and dumpsters of places like that.

Bottle 1

http://www.gardeningclan.com/hanging-garden-planters-recycled-soda-bottles.html

Bottle 2

http://www.rosenbaum.com.br/blog/rosenbaum-responde-ldl-48-horta-vertical/ (This isn’t in English, translate it here. Just copy and paste and it does all the work for you.)

There are many variations of these which you can google plastic bottle planters DIY images and look at them. The planters themselves aren’t that wowing, but the plants just seem to make it work.

Kitchenwares. These can often be found at thrift stores or apartment dumpsters.

Kitchen 1

http://www.inspirebohemia.com/2011/07/unique-garden-planters-and-displays.html This site has super cute ideas.

Kitchen 2

http://www.kidzworld.com/article/26877-homemade-mothers-day-gifts

Kitchen 3

http://urbancomfort.typepad.com/.a/6a01156f70f21e970c014e883874d6970d-popup

Kitchen 4

http://themicrogardener.com/wp-content/uploads/2011/04/Colander-planter1.jpg

Lighting. Thrift stores would probably be a good place to find these, but any place remodeling would be a good place to ask. You may not be able to find these exact pieces, but that’s still not an excuse to go out and buy it. Be creative and make something your own.

Lighting 1

http://www.designsponge.com/2011/04/we-like-it-wild-recycled-fixture-planters.html

Lighting 2

http://www.modishblog.com/modish/2010/06/pretty-for-under-twenty.html

Lighting 3

There are some planters like this, but I was referring to old light sconces. I saw an awesome example of this, but then I lost it. Kind of like this, but with this Lighting 4

http://blog.build.com/lighting/wall-sconces-under-100 . It’s hard to explain because all of these elements were together that just made it perfect, but oh, well.

So, anyway, I clearly went a little overboard, and while these are not all new ideas, I do hope it got your wheels turning and I think it’s also safe to say that I may have a sickness and may need to be locked up. Don’t worry though, the world is your oyster, so be inspired.

Want more ideas? Check out my DIY page.

Save the Sea Turtles

Starting the Journey

Each year thousands of hatchling turtles emerge from their nests along the southeast U.S. coast and enter the Atlantic Ocean. Sadly, only an estimated one in 1,000 to 10,000 will survive to adulthood. Good luck, turtle! http://www.treehugger.com/natural-sciences/11-most-threatened-sea-turtle-species-identified.html

We live in a world of interconnectedness; the human-induced threats sea turtles and other species contend with—fishery impacts, coastal development, poaching, pollution, and global warming—are forces we all influence and all have the power to change.

Never, not once, have I ever hear a negative thing about a turtle. Except if someone has a pond and the turtles are eating all the fish which is sad, but as sad as no turtles ever? I don’t think so. Even if you did think that, sea turtles are not the same as red eared sliders or the other various pond fish eating turtles.

So what can we do to help our non-fishy friends?

Minimize Fishery Impacts

Online resources such as Seafood Watch and the Marine Stewardship Council provide you with all the information you need to select the best catch of the day, whether at home or out on the town. Follow sustainable seafood guidelines and use your purchasing power to help improve this key industry.

Spread the Word

Partner with local community groups, schools, and businesses to teach the rest of your community about eating sustainably caught seafood in your area. Post guidelines, host information sessions, and get more people involved.

Encourage Further Action

Find out more about fishery regulations in your area and let your government know that you support a better regulated fishing industry that protects the marine environment.

Begin a dialogue about seafood products with your favorite restaurants and super markets. Tell them it’s important to you that they offer customers sustainable seafood choices.

Decrease Direct Take

Around the world, sea turtles are harvested both for sustenance and for profit. As conservation organizations help communities find alternative food-sources to sea turtles, all of us can help eradicate the consumer market for sea turtle products.

Just Say No

When it comes to food, expose the myth: sea turtle eggs, meat, oils, and fat do not possess any special medicinal properties.  They may, however, contain dangerous levels of toxins such as cadmium and mercury.

When it comes to fashion, remember that no sea turtle products are safe to buy, even if marketed as antiques. Every tortoiseshell or turtle leather trinket bought, contributes to the continued poaching of sea turtles.

 Protect Coastlines

Coastlines are special places that we share with many species, including sea turtles. By making better choices about how we use these areas, we can help ensure that they remain vibrant and healthy for generations to come. Also, if you live on the beach, you can help ensure their safety by picking up litter and recycling so there is less trash for them to confuse as food or get trapped in.

Support Turtle Friendly Tourism

When planning your next beach vacation, choose to stay at a hotel or resort that is working to protect its surrounding environment. If traveling to a sea turtle nesting area, confirm that the establishment has taken the steps necessary to ensure the safety of nesting females, nests, and hatchlings. Do they turn lights off in the evening? Instruct guests on proper observation behavior? Support or partner with a beach monitoring program? If not, tell them to; if so, let them know how much you appreciate it.

Reduce Pollution

Pollution affects sea turtles in many ways, both directly and indirectly. Take stock of the goods that you use and decide what you can substitute for more environmentally friendly products, and what you can do without altogether.

Follow the Three R’s

Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle remain the consummate pollution-mitigating rules to live by. The less you consume single-use products and the more effectively you use items you already have, the better. Switch from disposable plastic bags to reusable cloth bags and from disposable plastic bottles to reusable metal or plastic bottles.

Get the Whole Picture

When at the store consider supporting companies that are committed to the best environmental practices throughout their production chain and who plan for what happens to their products when you’re finished with them. Where does the company get its raw materials? What do they do with production waste? Can individual components of the products be recycled after use?

Make a Clean Sweep

Even if you don’t live near the ocean, your waste can be carried there in rivers or on the wind, causing damage to sea turtles and other marine life. Don’t let it get that far! Join the annual International Coastal Cleanup or bring your community together independently to collect trash along the shores of a local waterway, park, or street.

 Slow Climate Change

Although we may not yet fully understand the far-reaching effects of climate change, we understand enough to know that addressing it is among the most pressing challenges of our time. Sea turtle habitats such as nesting beaches and coral reefs have already been affected by rising sea levels and temperatures, but we can help avoid further damage by acting to mitigate climate change now.

Tread Lightly

There are many ways to reduce your carbon footprint—some that are easy and that you can do right now, and others that take more planning and time.

To start:

  • Turn Off – Make sure to turn lights off when you leave a room.
  • Unplug – Appliances can draw energy even when powered off, so unplug those not in use. Use power strips to make shutting down multiple units at once easier.
  • Make a Switch – evaluate your routine commute to determine whether or not you can substitute car travel for public transportation, biking, or walking.

Visit the Environmental Protection Agency to calculate your current carbon footprint and learn more ways to trim it down.

http://www.nmfs.noaa.gov/pr/species/turtles/threats.htm

Learn The Rules Of The Beach

Whether you live along a sea turtle nesting beach, or are just visiting one, follow these easy tips to minimize your impact on sea turtles:

  • While inside your home or room at night, close your drapes and turn off all unnecessary lights.
  • While walking on the beach at night, make minimal use of your flashlight.
  • If you encounter a sea turtle, do not touch, shine a light on, or take flash photographs of it; remain quiet, watch from a distance, and enjoy the moment.
  • During your beach visit, keep all trash together and secure, and make sure to bring it and all other belongings with you when you leave.  Never toss cigarette butts or plastic bags into the sea. Turtles mistake plastic bags for jellyfish (the favorite dish of some species); cigarette butts swell in the stomach.
  • After playing in the sand, fill in all holes to make sea turtle pathways between surf and sand as smooth as possible.
  • Keep your pets leashed at all times to prevent them from harming eggs and hatchlings.
  • Avoid driving on the beach. Even in permitted areas, driving on the beach can crush incubating eggs and tire tracks on the sand can trap hatchlings as they head out to sea.

From the time they are born, sea turtles are faced with every possible obstacle  when trying to survive into adult hood. Each year thousands of hatchling turtles emerge from their nests along the southeast U.S. coast and enter the Atlantic Ocean. Sadly, only an estimated one in 1,000 to 10,000 will survive to adulthood. http://www.conserveturtles.org/seaturtleinformation.php?page=threats

 

 

Just So Cute I couldn't Resist

So after giving you all the information I could possibly find, I decided that there are I should let the turtles do the talking one last time. And plus it was so cute, I could hardly resist.
http://ocean.si.edu/ocean-photos/habitat-leatherback-turtles

Spring Break Pictures

Here are some of the pictures from spring break. I kept forgetting my camera(I’m used to having my purse all the time, so when I left my purse in the car so I didn’t have to lug it around, I forgot there are actually things I need in there.), so some of the good ones are on my mom’s camera. These pictures aren’t all I took, but they, to me, are the most interesting, prettiest or most unique. I hope you enjoy them.

Pictures That Say a Thousand Words

I’m going to let these picture speak for themselves. Below each picture is the link where I got them if you want to find more information.

This guy inspired this post. I first saw him on a video and so after I found it and realized what I was looking at I was really disturbed by it. I hope that your as disgusted as I am by this problem as I am and it inspires you to think about what you throw away and work to reduce waste.