Skip to content Skip to site navigation

Katharine Wroth's Posts

Comments

Alive and not-so-well in the Andes

This weekend, news outlets reported that an American hiker in the Andes had discovered items belonging to a survivor of the plane crash made famous in the movie "Alive." (You know, the one where the protagonists discovered that their less-fortunate seatmates made for a tasty nibble?) The wire story said the loot -- including a wallet, jacket, and roll of film -- had been buried in the snow for the last 32 years. Gee, wonder how they surfaced?

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

That’s just crazy talk

On the CNN home page this morning, a headline quietly announced what scientists and environmentalists have been shrieking about for a while now: Experts: Earth getting warmer, people to blame. The article, reporting on the American Association for the Advancement of Science's annual meeting, quotes Tim Barnett of the Scripps Institution of Oceanography: "The debate over whether or not there is a global warming signal is now over, at least for rational people." Rational, you say? I popped on over to Fox News to see how they were handling the story. Hmm, no mention of global warming amidst the Jacko …

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

Uprisings down under

Who says there are no good protests anymore? Australian environmentalists used ice sculptures yesterday to protest their country's refusal to jump on the Kyoto wagon. Maybe frozen icons are just what the U.S. needs! (Insert hackneyed Al Gore joke here.)

Read more: Politics

Comments

Spoiling organic milk?

The Wisconsin-based Cornucopia Institute has just filed a complaint with the USDA against two dairy farms in Idaho and California. It alleges that massive factory farms are labeling their products organic even though their thousands of cows are not pasture-fed, as required by USDA guidelines. Last month the institute -- which is devoted to "the fight for economic justice for the family-scale farming community" (and also taking pictures out the car window) -- filed a complaint against a similar operation in Colorado. This led the USDA to start ruminating on what "access to pasture" really means, anyway. While the folks …

Read more: Food

Comments

Kids say the darnedest … wait a minute …

Who knows where they found them, but yesterday the BBC talked to eight well-spoken young people from around the world about environmental issues. Besides filling your heart with oodles of warmth and light, these teens -- who hail from Japan, India, Ecuador, Kenya, the U.K., and the U.S. -- will probably also make you feel kind of lazy and dumb. They talk about poverty and free trade and sustainability, and describe starting a recycling program, serving as a representative for the U.N. Environment Program, and running a project for street children. Even the kid from the U.S., a country not …

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

Ain’t it funny how time slips away

We are late on this one -- later than J Lo's apology for sucking, later than the U.S. signing on to Kyoto -- but just in case you missed it: Willie Nelson is getting into the biodiesel business! The iconic singer and three partners have formed "Willie Nelson's Biodiesel," and they're marketing "BioWillie" (a name that somehow conjures former President Clinton, but never mind) to truck stops across the country. Lots of bloggers have gushed about this already. But here's my favorite part: "I got on the computer and punched in biodiesel and found out this could be the future," …

Read more: Climate & Energy

Comments

Revisiting Red Hill Valley

And you haven't even had time to read the post on this from Friday. But several alert readers in Canada have, and they sent along a few updates. Supporters have filed a multi-part petition (number 82), now languishing at the federal level, that addresses damage the highway project will cause, including to the federally endangered spiny softshell turtle. To raise awareness of the issues, the more artistically inclined have released a CD called "Keepers of the Sacred Fire," which features 15 local artists, and a documentary too. And late last week, eight members of Hamilton Friends of Canada traveled to …

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

How green is their Red Hill Valley?

Canada -- that blissful, forward-looking, do-gooding land to the north -- has some problems of its own. In Hamilton, Ontario, a battle is raging over the construction of a multi-lane expressway through Red Hill Valley. The 1,600-acre urban park, which accounts for a third of the city's green space, extends from the Niagara Escarpment (a U.N. Biosphere Reserve) to the shores of Lake Ontario. A native burial site, it was protected in 1929, and is now home to the city's last remaining creek -- and critters including the rare southern flying squirrel. So hey, why not build a road through …

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

Mad about saffron

This weekend, after decades of planning, Christo opens a massive installation in Central Park. The Bulgarian-born "environmental artist," best known for wrapping Berlin's Reichstag in 1995, has draped 7,500 16-foot-tall structures in saffron-colored fabric to create The Gates. New York officials originally rejected the artist's plans in 1980 due in part to environmental concerns. So he modified the structures to sit on the pavement instead of in the soil, pledged to avoid paths with low-hanging branches, and shifted the two-week event from fall to comparatively quiet winter. Its materials -- including 5,290 tons of steel and more than 1 million …

Read more: Uncategorized

Comments

They’ll be back

At a U.N. conference in Bangkok this week, nations and NGOs are debating the merits of the Terminator. No, not the esteemed governor; the controversial biotechnology developed by the USDA and the agricultural industry in the late '90s that can make plants produce sterile seeds. As a result, farmers would be forced to buy seeds anew each year. They'd benefit from hardier crops and higher yields, proclaim the corporate giants; growers and their advocates -- especially in poorer countries -- beg to differ. The U.N. has placed a moratorium on the Terminator, and governments in Asia and Africa have called …

Read more: Uncategorized