As an analyst and communicator at UCS, I know how difficult it can be to tell a complicated, nuanced story in our sound-bite-oriented media culture. So even though it was not totally surprising, it was still frustrating to find UCS’s position on the benefits of local foods mischaracterized last week in a USA Today article that called local food “trendy,” but asked whether it is “really more eco-friendly.” Read More
August 15th, 2012
April 30th, 2012
Question: Which U.S. law that protects endangered species, tropical forests, and U.S. jobs is now in need of protection itself?
Answer: The Lacey Act.
For the last 100 years the Lacey Act has protected endangered species within the United States by making it illegal to transport them across state lines. In 2008, the act was amended to include a ban on the importation of illegally harvested timber from foreign countries. Now these amendments are under attack in Congress.
April 26th, 2012
Today I’m thinking about insurance. The point of having it is to protect the things we value most—like our health and our homes. But in U.S. farm policy, that logic has been turned on its head, and many of the crops we should value most are actually ineligible for insurance. Read More
April 11th, 2012
The third stop on our renewable energy tour of Germany was the state of North-Rhine Westphalia— the industrial, steelmaking, and coal mining center of the country—where we learned about the economic and social ramifications of Germany’s transition away from coal to renewable energy, and what lessons might be applied to the U.S. Read More
February 17th, 2012
January 9th, 2012
I’m off by a week, but…Happy New Year! I hope everyone resolved to buy a higher fuel economy or electric car or to find alternatives to driving all the time, because it looks like it could be yet another year of oil and gasoline price spikes, thanks yet again to Middle East security issues. Read More
September 21st, 2011
Across the country, articles are showing up with the news that gasoline prices are down anywhere from three to fifteen cents since last week. The average drop was six cents per gallon according to data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration.
That sounds like good news, no? Well, there’s a catch… Read More
September 21st, 2011
Jobs are pretty much the talk of the town these days. Politicians want to create them, the employed want to keep them, and the unemployed want to get them. At the same time the vast majority of American consumers, nearly 90 percent according to this Consumer Federation of America Survey, think its important to reduce our oil consumption.
What if we could trade some of our oil dependence for more jobs? Read More
September 9th, 2011
On my previous post on ozone, reader Jeff asked:
1) What is the current standard for ground ozone?
2) Which businesses, specifically, are trying – I mean succeeding – in blocking the new standards?
Jeff, I felt that the answers to your questions were complex enough to warrant another post (and probably even a book!). Here they are in brief. Read More
August 31st, 2011
They say the first step to recovery from addiction is admitting you have a problem. So here goes:
My name is Karen, and I buy too many vegetables out-of-doors.