Friday, February 23, 2007

Number One Milk Company says No to Clones

WASHINGTON -- The nation's biggest milk company, Dean Foods, said Thursday it will refuse milk from cloned cows. The Food and Drug Administration gave preliminary approval to meat and milk from cloned animals and could grant final approval by the end of the year. Federal scientists say there is virtually no difference between clones and conventional cows, pigs or goats.

WASHINGTON -- The nation's biggest milk company, Dean Foods, said Thursday it will refuse milk from cloned cows. The Food and Drug Administration gave preliminary approval to meat and milk from cloned animals and could grant final approval by the end of the year. Federal scientists say there is virtually no difference between clones and conventional cows, pigs or goats.

Smaller companies such as Ben & Jerry's Ice Cream and Organic Valley previously have said they oppose milk from clones. Dallas-based Dean Foods is a $10 billion company that owns Land OLakes and Horizon Organic, among dozens of other brands. In a statement issued Thursday, the company said its customers and consumers don't want milk from cloned animals.

"Numerous surveys have shown that Americans are not interested in buying dairy products that contain milk from cloned cows and Dean Foods is responding to the needs of our customers," the statement said.

Milk companies worry that concern over cloning could turn people away from dairy products. So far, public opinion appears mixed. A September poll by the Pew Initiative on Food and Biotechnology found that 64 percent of respondents were uncomfortable with animal cloning. And a December poll by the University of Maryland found that the same percentage would buy, or consider buying, such food if the government said it was safe.

Dean Foods spokeswoman Marguerite Copel said the company respects the FDA, "but we've got a customer and consumer base."

The company did not say whether it would use milk from the offspring of cloned animals. Cloning companies say the purpose of cloning is not to put many cloned livestock into the food supply. Instead, the goal is to make a genetic copy of a superior animal and then put its offspring into the food supply.

Source: Associated Press

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Thursday, February 22, 2007

States Limit Mercury Emissions While the Feds Fail to Act

Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania sued the Bush Administration this week claiming they failed to adequately regulate emissions of mercury and other pollutants at older cement plant kilns. Last December, the EPA announced new limits on mercury and hydrocarbon emissions from cement kilns built after December 2, 2005, but left weak rules in place for kilns from before that date. The states argue that the Clean Air Act requires the EPA to limit mercury from all kilns, not just new ones.

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Thursday, February 22, 2007
In Today's Dispatch:
Strengthening Communities
States Limit Mercury Emissions While the Feds Fail to Act

Strengthening Communities
by J. Mijin Cha
States Limit Mercury Emissions While the Feds Fail to Act

Connecticut, Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, New York, New Jersey and Pennsylvania sued the Bush Administration this week claiming they failed to adequately regulate emissions of mercury and other pollutants at older cement plant kilns. Last December, the EPA announced new limits on mercury and hydrocarbon emissions from cement kilns built after December 2, 2005, but left weak rules in place for kilns from before that date. The states argue that the Clean Air Act requires the EPA to limit mercury from all kilns, not just new ones.

The EPA's mercury reduction plan as a whole is lacking. In addition to weak regulations on cement kilns, the federal regulations concerning mercury emissions from coal fired power plants also fall short of the mark. Critics point out that newer emissions control technology could reduce mercury emissions from coal fired power plants between 75 and 90 percent in just the next few years. Trying to obscure this fact, the EPA distorted the analysis of its mercury pollution regulation plan to make it appear that the Bush administration's approach was superior to proposals supported by environmentalists, according to an analysis by the non-partisan General Accounting Office.

And again, it's been up to the states to take the lead and pick up the federal government's slack:
• Illinois Governor Blagojevich proposed a plan to cut mercury emissions from power plants by 90 percent by 2009. Governor Blagojevich's proposal also eliminates the emissions trading allowed under the federal plan, forcing power plants to decrease emissions instead of delaying reductions by buying cleaner credits. The proposal received final approval last December.
• Georgia has proposed an across the board mercury capture of between 80-85 percent by 2010 and 90 percent by 2015. More than 15 percent of children born in Georgia have dangerous levels of mercury in their blood, putting them at risk for cerebral palsy, delayed neurological milestones, and lifelong learning deficiencies.
• Connecticut legislators surpassed the EPA regulation even before the newest regulations came out. In 2003, CT passed a bill requiring a 90 percent reduction in mercury emissions. Wisconsin also passed a stricter emission limit before the new EPA regulation, calling for an 80 percent reduction.
• At least twenty-two states in total have adopted more stringent regulations, accelerated compliance deadlines, restricted interstate trading of mercury, or adopted more than one of these approachs.

Twenty-two states disagree with the EPA's mercury reduction plan, a plan that was adopted under the usual Bush adminstration M.O.: lack of transparency, distortion of facts, and a final product that will never achieve the necessary results.

More Resources

Dan Nagengast
785-748-0609 fax



Australia to fully phase out incandescent bulbs by 2010

In a world first, Australia will officially make the switch away from incandescent bulbs. Environment Minister Malcolm Turnbull said today that the country would phase out inefficient lighting over the next three years, reducing greenhouse-gas emissions hundreds of thousands of tons a year and cutting household lighting costs up to 66 percent. "If the rest of the world follows our lead," he said, "this will reduce an amount of energy ... to the tune of five times as much energy as Australia consumes." Similar bulb-banning campaigns are gaining steam in the U.K. and California, with compact fluorescents -- which cost more up front but last four to 10 times longer and use 20 percent of the energy of incandescents -- appearing as the leading alternative. Critics in Australia pointed out that much more could be done, including focusing on industrial energy-saving measures and ratifying the Kyoto Protocol. But Turnbull defended the move: "It's a little thing," he said, "but it's a massive change."

straight to the source: BBC News, 20 Feb 2007

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Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Opportunity to Start Something on Campus-kind of like this coblog..


Applications are now being accepted for 10 teams of young people from
across the U.S. to begin "Conscious Lifestyle" chapters at their high
school or university. Winners will receive start-up funding, technical
support, a chapter web page, and more. Through education, awareness,
and action, Conscious Lifestyle connects consumers and companies
worldwide to advocate for greater social and environmental standards.
To learn more, visit

Type the rest of your post here.



Cuts to National Service Funding



In his February 5th budget request to Congress for Fiscal Year 2008,
President Bush proposed deepening last year's cuts to the Corporation
for National and Community Service. Included were reductions of $5
million for Learn and Service America, $9.2 million for
AmeriCorps*State and National, $5.7 million for AmeriCorps*VISTA, $25.1
million for AmeriCorps*NCCC, $16.1 million for the National Service
Trust, and $13 million for the Senior Corps. In all, the Corporation's
budget would be cut by more than $84 million, continuing the downward
trend since Fiscal Year 2004. To learn more, visit and



consuming to fill imaginary voids...

This is a blurb posted in the Daily OM. I find it an interesting read each morning, and helps me to think about things in ways I may not have considered or connect topics in ways I hadn't imagined. To subscribe, go to: You might find you like it :)...

February 20, 2007
Consuming To Heal
Filling Imaginary Voids

In our culture today, we are constantly encouraged to consume. This includes food as well as purchasing ever newer items that we may not need, often using money that we may not actually have. It could be that we are trying to fill a void we feel within ourselves, but if we take the time to examine it, we know deep inside that this is not the solution. We may notice how quickly the joy fades after our purchase or once the food we've enjoyed is gone, and how soon we feel the urge to do so again. This is a symptom of disconnection from our true selves, so the first step toward balance is connection to our center.

When we connect to our center, we access the fullness of who we are as an individual spirit. We also connect to the energy source of the universe, from which nothing can be lacking. It could be that we have been energetically starving ourselves but trying to feed the need physically, outwardly. Once we make the decision to reconnect, we have the ability to examine the behavior from a higher place within ourselves. We can look, without judgment, at the thoughts and feelings that occur before and after our indulgences to find a pattern. We may want to keep track of these observations in a journal so that we can go back if we lose our way.

Often boredom is the main cause for the desire to eat or shop. But when we connect to our center, our intuition can more clearly guide us to the places where our energy can best be used. We can replace the boredom with a meditation practice, a class, a project, seeking a new job, or getting involved in a charity. We may even want to begin planning an adventurous trip. Whatever inspires us tells us the direction we should go. When we find the place we are meant to be, we become so consumed by its constant creation that the frivolous filling of an imaginary void becomes a thing of the past. .



Tuesday, February 20, 2007

Coffee and Tea Guide

    How to Green Your Coffee & Tea (TreeHugger)  Annotated

    How to Green Your Coffee & Tea

    Coffee is the world’s most commonly traded commodity after crude oil, and tea is the world’s most consumed beverage after water.


    (A solar coffee roaster used by Solar Roast Coffee)

    6. Loosen up

    Tea bags and coffee filters can be useful but are mostly unnecessary. Great coffee can be made at home with a reusable filter or a stovetop espresso maker. A quality tea infuser can last a lifetime and replace an untold number of (questionably compostable) tea bags. If you do use filters and bags, look for biodegradable and unbleached ones. >

    9. Compost the roast

    Tea leaves and especially coffee grounds make outstanding compost. Coffee’s high nitrogen content has made it a fertilizer of choice since days of yore. Composting leaves and grounds helps keep organic waste out of landfills, makes great soil, and keeps waste baskets dry. If you don’t have a heap to toss it on, just spread coffee grounds on the top of your plants’ soil.

    2. Since there’s no point in using energy to boil more water than will get used, fill the mug you’ll use with water and pour that into the kettle.

    5. Milk kills the benefits of tea?

    While tea has been shown to reduce the risk of cardiovascular disease and stroke, a study conducted at the University of Berlin has found that adding dairy milk to tea eliminates these benefits. (link



Invisible Children Benefit Show

Live music at Radinas to raise money for Invisible Children.

Please drop what you are doing and COME to this.
THIS is not about the music.
THIS is about lives being saved.
The KIDS in Northern Uganda aren't like you and I.
THEY fear abduction, torture and death.
To escape, they run from home and sleep in cities, unprotected, missing their families, missing an education.

THIS is not fake and it's going to be happening while we sit in a coffeeshop and listen to music. While WE drink coffee and chat, THEY walk. While WE sleep in beds and dream, THEY lay on top of each other, crowded and uncomfortable and unsafe.


But! This Music Night - we're starting at 6 pm for a reason. We have 4 amazing musicians who are willing to play for free to help this cause.
They've donated their PAY to help the children.
The baristas of the night, Heather and Christina, have donated their TIPS to help the children.
Wade Radina himself has agreed to donate 10% of the SALES to help the children.

What can YOU give? Just buying one thing will help. Tipping will help even more. Want to donate outright? 100% of that will go directly to the cause.

Have NO idea what this is or why you should care? FIND OUT.
Screenings put on by a team from the national office of the Invisible Children organization will be shown Tues. Feb 27 and Wed. Feb. 28 in at 7 pm in Forum Hall in the Union.
That's the night before and the night of the Benefit Show.
I URGE YOU - don't come to the music if you haven't seen the documentary. It's an hour long and very much worth your time. Then come to Radina's afterwards and support the children you just saw.

6 pm - tyler gregory
7 pm - margo may
8 pm - aid
9 pm - shhh

GO HERE to get more INVOLVED:

OR HERE for a great, quick way:

As shown on the Facebook Event.



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SEA Udall Nominees

Sally Maddock, fifth-year senior in architecture and natural resources and environmental sciences, Lakewood, Colo.; and Megan Bindel, senior in biology, geography and natural resources and environmental sciences, Lee's Summit, Mo.

Read the article here




As more people start to use the coblog and get into it, more moderation is going to be required. So, this is just a reminder to everyone to remember to label all of your posts and specifically to remember to label them with at least one of the menu tabs at the top of the coblog. This will help immensely to keep all of the content organized. Also keep in mind that the content does not have to be confined to articles and news items. It can be multi-faceted and multi-media. It will be a great thing to start having discussions and posting thoughts on here about whatever people are interested in/thinking about.



Wal-Mart: In case you don´t already know - Part II

    Bill McKibben: Wal-Mart - What's A Bargain Worth? - Vermont Commons Annotated

    Bill McKibben: Wal-Mart - What's A Bargain Worth?

    There is no question that it will save us some money at the cash register. How much? The only estimate I’ve seen comes from a UVM economist and Wal-Mart enthusiast named Art Woolf who calculated that it might be as much as $36 million annually. I think that’s a gross overestimate, but let’s take it as gospel truth. That works out to $58.14 apiece.

    So the question becomes: is it worth it? What are the costs of going ahead and trying to grab that $58.14?

    I’m going to describe what I see as the costs across several different categories. Some will seem far away, others are much more obviously close to home. All reflect Wal-Mart’s enormous efficiency and scale—a scale that so dwarfs the small size of our state that it becomes a central, overwhelming fact. Any of the Big Box stores are out of scale with Vermont; a K-Mart or Costco would be no better. But it’s Wal-Mart that has announced its plans, so it can serve as a useful reference point.

    Let’s begin by talking about jobs.

    • This is an article about Wal-Mart in Vermont. It goes into detail about how the "low prices" are actually costing you more that you may think...

      - post by kjc6688



Wal-Mart: In case you don´t already know

    On Wal-Mart | By Umbra Fisk | Grist | Ask Umbra | 22 Nov 2004 Annotated

    Another Brick in the Wal-Mart

    On Wal-Mart

    Why Wal-Mart is evil is too philosophical a question for the likes of me, but I can produce some evil-sounding data. Keep in mind, however, that you may like the Wal-Mart world; cheap carbonated water may rank above healthy unions and livable wages in your personal priorities. I doubt it, but I want to recognize that each of us is a unique person with unique thoughts and opinions.

    Wal-Mart's impressively effective business practices have led to the spread of Sam Walton's Arkansas discount store to 5,000 locations in 10 countries, with $256 billion in global revenue in 2003. Wal-Mart prides itself on (and sells itself on) low prices. You yourself are swayed by them, and they constitute the only argument anyone has been able to muster in favor of the chain.

    In short, Wal-Mart disables and replaces small businesses that may have provided health care coverage and higher wages to employees, forcing people to ask the government for assistance or go without health care -- ultimately the costliest solution. Meanwhile, those businesses able to survive around a Wal-Mart are joining the race to the bottom. Grocery megastores involved in long union strikes in California over the past year repeatedly cited the need to compete with Wal-Mart as the central problem on their side of the battle over wage and benefit packages.



This is the Industrialization of Food

    A Tale of Two Apples Annotated

    A Tale of Two Apples

    America’s favorite apple, the Red Delicious, was first harvested in Iowa in 1874. Back then, Iowa was one of the country’s top apple growers. But if you live in Des Moines today, your apples probably come from Washington state, the source of more than half of the country’s crop. But there are a few important differences between a typical Red Delicious from an Iowa farm and its globe-trotting cousin from the Northwest.



    Average Distance From Farm To Shelf

    61 miles

    1,722 miles

    Additional Packaging

    Put into bags or boxes for shipping

    Coated with carnauba wax or shellac to preserve freshness; “Washington apple” sticker applied; put into bags or boxes for shipping

    Earliest On-Shelf Date

    Within 2 days of harvest

    Within 1 week of harvest

    Cold Storage

    May be refrigerated for up to 2 months

    May be kept in sealed, reduced-oxygen, controlled-atmosphere storage for up to 8 months


    September to October

    September to October


    No later than mid-December


    Transportation Impact

    Shipping a pound of Washington apples to Iowa requires 30 times more fuel and releases 30 times more CO2 than shipping a pound of Iowa apples to a local market.



A Different Approach to Wind Power

    'Micro' wind turbines are coming to town | CNET Annotated

    'Micro' wind turbines are coming to town

    Rather than build farms of towering wind turbines in rural areas, some companies are designing "micro," or small-scale, turbines that fit on top of buildings. The idea is to generate electricity from wind in urban or suburban settings.



"Omnivore´s Dilemma" Teaser... more great stuff from Michael Pollan

    No Bar Code Annotated

    “No, I don’t think you understand. I don’t believe it’s sustainable—‘organic,’ if you will—to FedEx meat all around the country,” Joel told me. “I’m afraid if you want to try one of our chickens, you’re going to have to drive down here to pick it up.”

    This man was serious. He went on to explain that Polyface does not ship long distance, does not sell to supermarkets, and does not wholesale its food. All of the meat and eggs that Polyface produces is eaten within a few dozen miles or, at the most, half a day’s drive of the farm—within the farm’s “foodshed.”

    (The typical fruit or vegetable on an American’s plate travels some 1,500 miles to get there, and is frequently better traveled and more worldly than its eater.)

    “Don’t you find it odd that people will put more work into choosing their mechanic or house contractor than they will into choosing the person who grows their food?”



Monday, February 19, 2007


Attention...attention...another local festival on the scenes: Dogstock at Melvern Lake, KS on July 26-29, 2007...

Dogstock is an eclectic four day music and camping festival scheduled for July 26 - 29, 2007 on an 81 acre farm in Melvern, KS. This is a multi-faceted, pet-friendly all ages event designed to raise awareness of crucial animal welfare issues as well as raising much needed funds for the dogs. Animal lovers are invited to bring their lucky dog to the festival, however all pets must be spayed/neutered and have a current vaccination record and all children must be accompanied by an adult at all times. Tickets for this 4 day party are only $60, and it's for a good cause, so check it out. Some of the talent confirmed are listed below. There is great talent there, some you know, some you should, and Fort Collins is heavily represented! For more information, check out or hope to see you there!
> Confirmed Dogstock Line-up:
> WoolEye
> 3 Peas
> 56 Hope Road
> Alabaster Brown
> Alan Vasquez
> Andreas Kapsalis Trio
> Bernie Worrell of Parliament Funkadelic with
> T.M. Stevens of the James Brown Band
> Blueground Undergrass
> Boogie Hustlers
> Brother Bagman
> Bump
> Buttermilk Boys
> Cactus
> Cherry Poppin' Daddies
> Chicago Afrobeat Project
> Chubby Carrier and the Bayou Swamp Band
> Codetalkers
> Commander Cody
> Devon Allmans Honeytribe
> Down Lo
> Ed Danger
> Elephant Revival
> Euforquestra
> Family Groove Company
> Fareed Haque
> Freekbass
> Giant Panda Guerilla Dub Squad
> Great American Taxi featuring Vince Herman
> Green Lemon
> It's A Beautiful Day
> Ivan Neville's Dumpstaphunk
> Jah Roots
> Jam Camp
> James McMurtry
> Jason Webley
> Jeff Scheetz Band
> Jem Razz and the Free Radicals
> Jimmy D. Lane and Blue Earth
> J-san & The Analogue Sons
> Juan Prophet Organization
> K23 Orchestra
> Kan Eyed
> Kasey Rausch
> Kelley Hunt
> Kinetix
> Leon Russell
> Les Dudek and Friends
> Madahoochi
> Mad Libby
> Mama's Cookin'
> Melvin Seals and the Jerry Garcia Band
> Mississippi Flapjacks
> Moonshine Still
> Moser Woods
> Mozley Rose
> My-Tea Kind
> New Beat Society
> New Riders of the Purple Sage
> One Eyed Jack
> One Time
> Orooni
> Pat Travers
> Prism
> Proto-Kaw featuring Kerry Livgren
> Public Property
> Rebirth Brass Band
> Rev. Peyton's Big Damn Band
> Revison
> Shady Deal
> Shanti Groove f/ Bill McKay from Leftover Salmon
> SkyHi
> Smokin Bandits
> SoulEye (& his DJ)
> Spare Parts
> Speakeasy
> Stealin' Strings
> the BalanCe
> The Bob and Al Show
> The Brian Ruskin Quartet
> The Dewayn Brothers
> The Gaslights
> The Jazzwholes
> The Lowrider Band (The guys who wrote and performed: Cisco Kid, Why Can't We Be Friends, The World is a Ghetto and many more!)
> The Mayflies
> The New Alligators
> The Puppet Masters
> The Special Purpose
> The Station
> Tishamingo
> Treologic
> Twelve and Two
> Vanilla Fudge
> White Iron Band
> White Water Ramble
> WOO Band
> Yossarian's Lament
> Zion Tribe
> Zombie Bazooka Patrol



It's Official: He Rocks

Gore announces continents-spanning concert series, Live Earth

Never let it be said that Al Gore is not dedicated to his cause: the man will do whatever it takes to raise awareness about climate change. If it means hobnobbing at Sundance, he'll do it. Starring in a film that gets nominated for an Oscar? Not afraid. Orchestrating an event that features seven concerts on seven continents on 7/7/07? Check. Announcing said event with (slightly less luscious now that she's a brunette) Cameron Diaz at his side? Oh, if he must. The man is a modern-day martyr, and we salute him. With the help of Kevin Wall, executive producer of the 2005 Live8 concert that pushed for debt relief for poor nations, Gore will use the Live Earth shows to kick off a "Save Our Selves" campaign. "In order to solve the climate crisis, we have to reach billions of people," Gore said. "We are launching SOS and Live Earth to ... mobilize people all over the world to take action." More than 100 artists, from Snoop Dogg to Faith Hill, have already signed on. Short straw gets Antarctica.

straight to the source: Reuters, Mary Milliken, 15 Feb 2007



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