Botnst - 10/31/2004 8:13 AM
mzsmbs - 10/30/2004 11:55 PM
Botnst - 10/30/2004 10:38 PM
Better now then 40, 30, 20, and ten years ago.
Look, the rate of improvement will asymptotically approach a limit. In other words, it is not possible for the rate of improvement to be consant. It was really easy to have big improvements early-on. But after each improvement occurs, there is less improvement possible so a continuous rate of improvement is more difficult. Got it? So any real, though minor improvement over these recent years will probably have cost as much as significant improvements cost in 1970.
Is the cause a Repo or Demo problem? Ans: Neither. If we spend our efforts blaming each other we will waste energy on the wrong problem. Try putting your effort into promoting improvement rather than sharpshooting the opposition.
but way worse then 4 years ago.
i agree with you on most of the rest. look at what shrub has done though. he rolled everyting back and his forrest fire policy is really a clearcut policy... dems traditionally are way better for our health. (yes, i tie my health to my environs) klinton, with rep congress was able to accomplish quite a bit... all shrub is doing is opening OUR land to free-for-all for corps. Land=air/water too.
NOT Way worse than 4 years ago. But the rate of improvement is slowing and will continue to slow. In order to increase the rate of improvement we must spend increasing amount per incremental improvement.
The reason that CA needs such stringent controls are geological and climatological. The climatological portion is due to prevailing wind patterns that allow airborn waste to accumulate over their source. Other cities that have similar climatological problems are Mexico City and Lima, Peru. Also, much of the industrial and populated parts of the state are near-desert rainfall. That means the atmosphere is rarely cleansed by rain. Also, water must be reused numerous times, concentrating pallutants at each usage. With higher rainfall CA would clean the air and also dilute effluents more. Well, too bad. That's the price you pay to live in west-coastal Mexico...I mean USA.
On the geological side, low rainfall means that water-soluble chemicals remain in the soil. When water does flow through teh soil it picks-up the water-soluble chemicals. Water soluble chemicals include metal oxides, hydrides and salts. Some of these are highly toxic to plant live. So by using water in desert for irrigation, the various toxic chemicals wick-up from depth through teh soil and accumulate where the water is most needed--the root zone of plants. In order to remove the salts, farmers have to flood teh fields and let the run-off cleans the fields. The run-off accumulates in the river system. The run-off includes dissolved salts and metallic chemicals, some of which are toxic in even low concentrations. So plants and animals that live in the water die from run-off toxicity.
Aquatic and wetland plants are particularly important for sequestering toxic chemicals. In nature, these toxicity sinks are often the oxbows and floodplains of rivers and streams. But when we clear and build on the floodplain, and when we drain and fill oxbows, we are removing the filter from the river system. This allows even greater concentraion of dangerous materials in the water.
Then we come to industrial and human waste disposal....
Most of the problems from these two sources have been addressed. These are called, "Point-source pallutants". By careful sampling and analysis, you can trace an effluent to its precise origin and force compliance. But the majority of the major pollution in North America is NOT point-source. In water, it comes from surface water run-off of cities and farms. In atmosphere, it comes from the gazillion cars, refrigerators, air conditioners, furnaces, cook stoves, and farms, etc. No single source is the culprit and every individual item may be in compliance. But in aggregate, they are the major remaining source of pollution.
It will be an extremely difficult political problem to force compliance to stringent standards for non-point source pollution. I haven't seen or heard a peep out of either major party on that issue. Instead, we focus on what is easy--forcing point-source compliance to increasingly stringent standards.