Responding to growing outrage, Mayor Bloomberg reluctantly canceled the annual marathon scheduled for Sunday.
Hundreds of thousands of New Yorkers have no power, heat or water.
First responders are still recovering bodies of victims.
The city is not ready to celebrate.
From Wired Science your tax dollars at work. NOAA’s GOES 13 satellite image of Hurricane Sandy.
John Maeda from RISD posted a good graphical map on Twitter ESRI.COM disaster response. ESRI is a web mapping service.
The National Hurricane Center at the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has graphics and updates every six hours. All the commercial weather forecasters depend on NOAA.
Here’s the City of Providence hurricane news.
Youse all stay home and stay dry. If you didn’t already buy bread and milk, just settle for cake and champagne– good by candlelight.
Hey, it’s Rhode Island. You never know what to expect. But my Mom’s rhododendrons are on a second bloom, with bees.
From Steve Stycos:
Saturday, the Pawtuxet Village Farmers Market’s will feature the annual Pumpkin and Paw Paw Festival. Paw paws, a tropical tasting fruit native to the Mid-West will be available for sale from Rhode Island’s exclusive paw paw grower, Warwick’s Rocky Point Blueberry Farm. The fruit is rarely available, so try one.
A bake sale to benefit the local Cub Scouts and hay rides through Pawtuxet Village sponsored by Friends of Pawtuxet Village will also happen during the festival. Tickets for the hay rides may be purchased at Twice Told Tales. Advance ticket purchase is recommended.
Saturday is also the Halloween costume swap at the market. Those who have already turned in costumes may select new items until 11 AM. The swap is open to everyone else after 11 AM.
Finally, Saturday is the last chance to buy chances on the market coupon book containing a five dollar coupon from each market vendor. Proceeds will provide an incentive for SNAP recipients to shop at the market.
October 20, the market will feature a composting demonstration, free electronics recycling and a plant pot collection. The plant pots will be reused by our farmers. If you missed last week’s pot collection, remember to bring them next week.
In an effort to combat global warming, Great Britain plans to phase out the use of peat, according to the New York Times. Use of peat in public parks will be banned in 2015, in backyard gardening in 2020 and in commercial operations in 2030. Supporters of the ban say that peat bogs store more carbon dioxide than rain forests. Although some tout peat as a renewable resource, it takes 100 years for a healthy bog to restore just one half inch of peat. Most peat in the UK comes from Ireland. American peat primarily comes from Canada.
And yes, someone told me Pamela Anderson starred on the TV show “Bay Watch,” not Christy Brinkley. Oh well,
See you at the market.
It seems that Cranston has once again become the epicenter for acting out a drama that is likely being repeated, on a much smaller scale, in communities all across the country. This time the hot now-in-the-national-news debate is about father-daughter dances and how we are now calling them family dances.
Sometimes I feel like we have a special talent here in Cranston for making an issue out of things that would make common sense for us all to agree on. I wish we all could have agreed to just take the “Heavenly Father” off the prayer banner and call it a school pledge. I wish we could agree to let this family dance be our clarion call of respect for our different ways of raising children in the community. Sometimes I wonder if we were having this conversation in the presence of the children whose fathers are not available for the dance, how many of us would make the right decision and say to the children, “This is a family dance, and all are welcome. You can bring anyone you want.” But as Bob Plain points out, we are still feeling the pain from out last go-around with the ACLU, which may be driving a certain amount of the posturing and outcry.
I can sympathize with people who want this name to go away. While the pictures could line our walls of my husband and our ever-growing daughters posed side by side for the father-daughter dance photos, it’s not right for children to feel excluded. I know from my practice of social work, these issues are particularly hard on children in other family constellations, such as being raised by grandparents, foster parents, single parents, or in families with two moms. Our school changed to from the Father-Daughter dance to the Family Dance last year, and reports from our parent-teacher organization were that it was a successful event and we raised money for the school.
Carolyn Mark, who is the president of the National Organization for Women in Rhode Island, and who is running for school committee in East Greenwich, co-authored the letter that prompted the change in nomenclature. Click through to read more about the issue, including the letter she wrote.
They keep an eye on the sky in South Texas…
The historic hurricane season of 2005 remains the most active and destructive on record in the Atlantic basin. With a final tally of 28 named storms, 15 hurricanes and 7 major hurricanes, total property losses exceeded $159 billion with nearly 4,000 deaths.
However, at this point in the season (September 5th), the “n” name of that season was born, Tropical Storm Nate. The 2012 season has far been extremely active with 13 named storms, 6 hurricanes and no major hurricanes.
In the 2005 season, 6 hurricanes had also formed, but 4 of those developed into major hurricanes including the monster Katrina.
The 2005 season, wound up being the most active on record, and 2012 is so far, blowing away (no pun intended) early season forecasts that predicted near normal, to a below average season.
Leslie, and Michael are currently swirling in the Atlantic.
No saying how the rest of the season will go, but this year was supposed to be relatively calm according to experienced weather experts. Is the climate changing?
Buzz about ‘Beasts of the Southern Wild’ led me to expect a visually beautiful and inspiring story of childhood resilience, and there is that. But so much more. A review by critic, Rex Reed in the New York Observer gets it…
The setting is the emotionally parched and geographically designed cartographer’s view of hell called The Bathtub—what’s left of an area of makeshift cardboard and toothpick shanties that Katrina devastated, scattering the region’s population to the wind like dandelion fuzz. It lies low between the Gulf and the Mississippi River—a man-made wall has gone up on the dry side of the levee to protect against annihilating floods. This is where nothing grows, catfish and crawdads from polluted water are the only food, and stubborn Cajuns who refused to evacuate to higher ground when Brad Pitt and Sean Penn came down to rescue them on CNN News still live in the ultimate depths of poverty and ignorance. It’s the most sobering view of the uneducated and disenfranchised outcasts the world has forgotten since Precious.
The tone of the movie is deeply sad and brings up unfinished business. Hush Puppy, played by six-year-old Quvenzhane Wallis, is the center and heart of the story. She and her father Wink, played by Dwight Henry, struggle to keep above the rising waters of their bayou shantytown, The Bathtub. It’s a desperate and doomed struggle. Wink is dying, and the community of The Bathtub is trapped behind levees–the ocean rising as icebergs melt and the debris and pollution of the more affluent poisoning their waters. They have a survival ethic and skill that is deeply human, they wear the history of the human race tattooed on their bodies. But they are among the majority of the seven billion on our planet who, lacking power, could disappear beneath the waters without a trace.
This Wednesday, August 29th, marks seven years from the landfall of Category 5
Hurricane Katrina in Louisiana. Residents in the poorer quarters of New Orleans, like the residents of ‘The Bathtub’ in the film, lived below sea level. The levees in New Orleans failed catastrophically and more than 1,800 died. Those walls were intended to keep the water out. Years of other priorities, as foretold in the New Orleans Times-Picayune and Washington Post, left the most vulnerable citizens unprotected against the worst forces of nature. The elderly and handicapped were too often left to their own resources, and many, having survived other hurricanes, stayed in their apartments and hoped for the best. The fall of the levees was an unexpected and overwhelming disaster.
For the rest of America, the news footage of people stranded on rooftops, miles of water where neighborhoods used to be, a woman dying in a wheelchair on an overpass above the flood waters– these images will stay with us.
The news obsessed about ‘looters’ and pumped up stories of violent anarchy that slowed rescue and opened the gates to vigilante tactics by police officers. Crime was real enough, but in the crossfire between the frightened and armed, the innocent were left to die in abandoned rooms and drowning hospitals.
Some stats from the Common Dreams Katrina Pain Index
21 Percent of all residential addresses in New Orleans that are abandoned or blighted. There were 35,700 abandoned or blighted homes and empty lots in New Orleans (21% of all residential addresses), a reduction from 43,755 in 2010 (when it was 34% of all addresses). Compare to Detroit (24%), Cleveland (19%), and Baltimore (14%). Source: Greater New Orleans Community Data Center (GNOCDC).
27 Percent of people in New Orleans live in poverty. The national rate is 15%. Among African American families the rate is 30% and for white families it is 8%. Source: Corporation for Enterprise Development (CEFD) and Greater New Orleans Community Data Center (GNOCDC) Assets & Opportunity Profile: New Orleans (August 2012).
33 Percent of low income mothers in New Orleans study who were still suffering Post Traumatic Stress symptoms five years after Katrina. Source: Princeton University Study.
All of us who watched this disaster unfold are left with a sense that we could have done better. A barn-raising sort of mutual aid was needed, and volunteers from every state were eager to help. This good energy was squandered, along with the relief money and the teachable moment that this new level of disaster may be a warning of storms to come.
One of our two great political parties, the GOP, is holding their convention in Tampa, FL. They had to delay the convention by a day for Tropical Storm Isaac, which is predicted to strike land with hurricane force on the very anniversary of Hurricane Katrina.
It would be a crime to let the 24 hour spin cycle rob us of the longer view. The struggling poor in Beasts of the Southern Wild are haunted by ghosts from pre-history. America is haunted by ghosts from the drowning of New Orleans who have not been appeased, and will not rest easy as long as we close our ears to their warnings.
Chernobyl was a disaster of human error, Fukushima a natural disaster worsened by human error, but this is a whole other situation. The water in Long Island Sound is so warm that even with emergency rules that loosen the safety standards, the Millstone Nuclear Power Station had toshut down one of its units…
HARTFORD, Conn. (AP) — Connecticut’s nuclear power plant has shut down one of two units because water from Long Island Sound used to operate the plant is too hot following the hottest July on record.
Just 2 days ago ‘The Day’ reported that the NRC juggled the numbers to allow the plant to continue operating…
Waterford – Because water temperatures in Long Island Sound have been averaging 1.7 degrees above normal this summer, the Millstone Power Station has been granted an emergency amendment to its license related to cooling water used for Unit 2.
The amendment, issued Friday by the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, gives Millstone permission to use an average of three temperatures from three locations to ensure that the water drawn into the plant to cool instruments in the nuclear reactor building and the emergency diesel generators is no higher than 75 degrees. Previously the company was required to use a single measure of the highest temperature.
NRC spokesman Neil Sheehan said the agency agreed that taking an average would be a valid way to ensure the temperature was within safety limits. If the water exceeds 75 degrees, Millstone would be required to scale back operations, and if the water reaches 77 degrees, the plants would be required to shut down.
Water that is 77 degrees or higher does not sufficiently cool the plant to keep it within the margin of safety, Millstone spokesman Ken Holt said.
I’ve seen online arguments that a few Chernobyls may be the price we have to pay for stopping the carbon pollution inherent in other forms of energy production. That’s more honest than pretending that human error, acts of nature and unforeseen events will somehow bypass nuclear.
We are in a crisis, I’m feeling three days of exhausting heat and humidity as I write this. But in this crisis we have tools we did not have in the 20th Century, and denial is running out. Conservation, a smart grid, diverse power sources and questioning a ‘lifestyle’ based on geometrically increasing demand for manufactured needs are where we need to start. I don’t see so many Hummers on the road these days, and I’m doing more teleconferencing to save us time and fuel. I’m not very confident in our leaders from either party, this change will have to come from the people.
The Atlantic has been relatively quiet, but things are heating up…
According to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the 2012 Atlantic hurricane season has been “busy,” with six named storms since the season began June 1. In May 2012, NOAA forecasters originally indicated a 50 percent chance for a near-normal season in 2012, and predicted the chances for an above-normal season at 25 percent and a below-normal season at 25 percent. But on August 9, NOAA revised the chances for an above-normal season — upping the odds to 35 percent — while saying that the chances for a below-normal season have decreased to 15 percent.
There’s a cool graphic real-time hurricane tracker here. Our tax dollars at work.