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Straub Lecture

Environmental Changes and Human Well-Being: Information and HopePresented by Dr. Jane LubchencoThursday, February 22, 2007, 7 – 8:30 p.m. Salem Public Library’s Loucks AuditoriumThe path-breaking Millennium Ecosystem Assessment synthesizes scientific knowledge about the ways in which people benefit from “ecosystem services” such as water and air purification, climate regulation, the provision of seafood and crops, the protection of coastlines from storm damage, and places to enjoy nature. Professor Jane Lubchenco will discuss the state of ecosystem services and the innovative approaches being used to retain critical services while meeting the needs of current and future generations. A lead author ... Read more

Complete and compact neighborhoods

Here are a couple related items that demonstrate the great work being done by Sightline Institute (formerly Northwest Environment Watch), a Seattle-based think tank founded in 1993 by Alan Durning. First, from Sightline’s “Daily Score” blog, a post about new research that shows kids grow up healthier in walkable neighborhoods.That item links to this item from Sightline’s sustainability toolkit, “Build Complete, Compact Communities:”Growing in well-planned neighborhoods improves our health and economy, saves our time and farmland, strengthens our communities, and conserves our natural areas. Poorly planned growth wastes all those things.Building complete, compact communities—the opposite of poorly planned sprawl—yields ... Read more

The IPCC Report: How bad is it, Doc?

Our one and only planet is big, 25,000 miles around, but it has just a tiny little layer of atmosphere. From downtown Salem it’s about the same distance up to outer space as it is sideways to Silverton. Hence, the atmosphere can only take so much human burning. We do a lot of burning. It causes a greenhouse effect and traps heat.That’s right, it’s us people, almost for sure, according to the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change report #4 “Summary for Policy Makers” that was released the other day.Almost no doubt that people are the cause, so let’s ... Read more

How Green Was My Spinach

The planet is warming. Every person and every business should consider the carbon impact of every purchase. Pringle Creek does. Unfortunately, most people and businesses don’t care enough to do that thinking. Governments will need to tax carbon, we suspect; people and businesses do care about prices.For now, those of us who care could use more information. From The Daily Score, the weblog of Sightline Instititute, “Look for the Onion Label:”British supermarket chain Tesco--apparently, the world's fourth-largest retailer--is going to start labelling the carbon footprint of its foods. Most of the remainder of the Daily Score item is about ... Read more

A batch of articles and websites

We have here a batch of good articles that we've been saving up for this forum. Some of them are already a few weeks old. We expect that in the future we will bring to your attention newer news.From the Urban Land Institute: The Next Thing: Miles Per House? ULI Experts Discuss Impact of Transportation Costs on Location Decisions; Look at Future Infrastructure Financing. Senior Fellow of Transportation at the ULI, Bob Dunphy, mentioned in the article, came to Salem last summer to give a talk. Many people were excited about Dunphy's ideas for our fair city. As for ... Read more
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