Posts Tagged ‘enviroment’
As the population in rural areas continue to decline, more land is becoming available for public use. That’s a good thing for hikers, cyclists and other outdoor enthusiasts. The sad part is that as the land opens up we are getting a grim view of how folks viewed the land they once owned. Here in the Baraboo hills along the ice age trail, within Devil’s Lake State Park and elsewhere it’s easy to come across the remnants of past lives rusting away in otherwise pristine forests and valleys. The photo above was taken on the Ice Age Trail just west of Hwy 113 south-east of Baraboo. It’s hard to imagine that even now, some folks still feel no qualms about tossing everything they no longer use onto an old junk pile somewhere “out back” on their property. Let’s face it, sooner or later.. someone WILL have to clean it all up. I imagine it’s a struggle for parks and environmental organizations who are pressed simply to maintain the trails to find ways to deal with our legacy of waste. Do you carry it all out and pay for proper disposal? Do you leave it as a message for future generations? What are your thoughts?
Commentary – I have a relatively sensitive “Spin” meter, so when I read Ice Mountain’s leafy, green background bit about their thinner, “Eco-Slim” cap, I could just feel my toes begin to tingle…
By now, most of us have some sense that bottled water is not economical or good for the environment, and yet according to the New York State Department of Environmental Conservation, Americans still purchased nearly 31 billion bottles of water in 2006 and spend nearly $11 billion dollars on bottled water each and every year. What’s worse, few plastic water bottles are ever recycled, nearly 8 out of 10 of these bottles will end up in a landfill. Imagine, in 2005 the equivalent of about 18 million barrels of crude oil was consumed to replace the 2 million tons of plastic bottles that were wasted instead of recycled. And did we mention that they could be toxic? It makes your head spin doesn’t it!? Read the rest of this entry »
Commentary – Roadside adverting has always been around of course but judging by the condition of some of it out there, it seems as if even the business owners don’t believe they work any more. Take this faded little sign on the corner of South Blvd., and Highway 123 for instance; Is it shouting out, “quality” to you? Is it appetizing? Would this sign even catch your eye? If you saw it when passing by on your way to Devil’s Lake State Park or when heading over to Wal-Mart, would you suddenly hit your breaks, turn the car around and go buy a hot dog? I didn’t think so. And yet, you have to assume the business owner actually does want you to do just that. Read the rest of this entry »
Anyone who has walked through a grassy field out behind a farm, may think they know what a prairie is all about. I certainly used to. But open fields over run by domestic animals and farm equipment for the best part of a century share little in common with an actual prairie. In fact, there is very little “true” prairie left in Wisconsin. Read the rest of this entry »
Wasting leaves is wasting energy. Trees draw energy from the earth each year to grow their wonderful green canopies. In the fall, when you remove the leaves from your lawn you are essentially removing that stored energy as well. As most of us know, you cannot simply keep removing energy from your lawn or in time it will become brown, patchy and unhealthy. That’s when we start spending money on fertilizers which opens up a whole other deck of problems. The best plan is to keep that energy home if possible. So let’s put the leaf blowers away and see how we can be “green” when it comes to the reds, yellows and oranges of autumn. Read the rest of this entry »
Do you notice anything about the figure in this sign? Since here at Skillet Creek the “hiking guy” is part of our daily life we see him all the time. That’s probably why yesterday while our family was out hiking at Wildcat Mountain State Park near Ontario, WI., I could just feel something was wrong. The hiking guy just didn’t look right.. Read the rest of this entry »
Just look out the window of your car as you drive around town today. It could be any town really. Do you see it? There’s garbage everywhere. Sure, it’s nothing new and it’s so easy to miss at the speed of life, but wait a moment, have you really taken a bit of time to consider all this trash. What does it say about us, or town, our state, or country, our earth? Is it just a tempest in a paper cup, or a message about our society that’s well, down right scary? Read the rest of this entry »
Now here’s something that probably slips right under the radar these days. Have you noticed that the weather service has been issuing a lot of Air Quality Watches here in Wisconsin recently? One might suppose we were living in LA if it weren’t for the icicles and all the big red barns.
This morning, march 5th, most of western and south central Wisconsin is under an alert. An air quality alert is triggered by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources, and is issued whenever weather conditions are keeping the air still, usually when we’re under a high pressure, blue sky day. On days like this all that nasty stuff we release into the air when we drive, burn, or power up the local coal powered energy plant just hangs around forcing us to breath in our own filth in higher quantities than usual. You can see why your mother said you should always share.
So if you feel a little itch in the throat today or have a bit of a cough, now you know why. It’s air pollution, and you didn’t even have to drive to the big city to enjoy it.