Archive for the ‘Water Conservation’ Category

The Coal Plant Next Door, A Story by ProPublica   Leave a comment

“This story was originally published by ProPublica.” 

ProPublica is a Pulitzer Prize-winning investigative newsroom.

The Coal Plant Next Door

by Max Blau for Georgia Health News

Mark Berry raised his right hand, pledging to tell the whole truth and nothing but the truth. The bespectacled mechanical engineer took his seat inside the cherry-wood witness stand. He pulled his microphone close to his yellow bow tie and glanced left toward five of Georgia’s most influential elected officials. As one of Georgia Power’s top environmental lobbyists, Berry had a clear mission on that rainy day in April 2019: Convince those five energy regulators that the company’s customers should foot the bill for one of the most expensive toxic waste cleanup efforts in state history.

When Berry became Georgia Power’s vice president of environmental affairs in 2015, he inherited responsibility for a dark corporate legacy dating back to before he was born. For many decades, power companies had burnt billions of tons of coal, dumping the leftover ash — loaded with toxic contaminants — into human-made “ponds” larger than many lakes. But after a pair of coal-ash pond disasters in Tennessee and North Carolina exposed the environmental and health risks of those largely unregulated dumps, the Obama administration required power companies to stop using the aging disposal sites.

Berry had spent nearly two decades climbing the ranks of Southern Company, America’s second-largest energy provider and the owner of Georgia Power. By the time he was under oath that day, company execs had vowed to store newly burnt coal ash in landfills designed for safely disposing of such waste. But an unprecedented challenge remained: Figuring out what to do with 90 million tons of coal ash — enough to fill more than 50 Major League Baseball stadiums to the brim — that had accumulated over the better part of a century in ash ponds that were now leaking. Read more . . .

One Night for One Drop   1 comment


Children in Rural Area of Nicaragua (November 5, 2007) — Image by kenne

In November of 2007 I had an opportunity to visit the operation of The Rainbow Network in Nicaragua. This nondenominational organization serving Nicaragua’s poorest people through nutrition, healthcare, education, housing and micro-loans. Although I had an opportunity to learn about and witness their service in each of these areas, I was most impressed with their work to help provide access to clean water.

Shortly after my trip I became aware of One Drop, and international non-profit organization created by Cirque Du Soleil founder Guy Laliberte in 2007. One Drop has as its mission the use of water as a transformational force to improve living conditions, as well as give communities the ability to care for themselves and their families.

Three years ago many of the Cirque Du Soleil began working on a special show, One Night for One Drop, a tribute to scarce water supplies in countries around the world. This year marks the four year that 105 volunteer Cirque performers have worked on this project, and for the first time Fathom Events will be releasing Cirque du Soleil’s performance One Night for One Drop at select U.S. movie theaters, June 7th. 

“Water access projects do more than feed families, they ensure their food security.”

— Yann Martel

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Slideshow Images by kenne

Rain? Maybe.   Leave a comment

Hazy Sun (1 of 1)_edit blogOur rain total since the beginning of April is .3 inches (.76 cm) — yes, we do live in the desert. Image by kenne

Our desert remains
hydrological challenged —
conserve or we die.

— kenne

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