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May 13, 2011

This Week's Blogosphere Soup

A quick review of this past week's happenings in the blog world

Check out this ad for radioactive soil: "The August, 1948 issue of Sunset magazine advertised 'a truly radioactive soil' for your crops, which would remain in your soil for 20 years ('quite harmless') and increase yields by 20 percent." Yum!

Also in the blogosphere this week:

-- Climate scientists are rapping their way toward awareness.

-- Kitchen sinks that light on fire are no joke.

-- Here's a primer on the Mississippi River flooding. I learned something from this factoid:

The term "100-year flood" is misleading because it leads people to believe that it happens only once every 100 years. The truth is that an uncommonly big flood can happen any year. The term "100-year flood" is really a statistical designation, and there is a 1-in-100 chance that a flood this size will happen during any year. Perhaps a better term would be the "1-in-100 chance flood."

-- Thanks to Florida's governor and his politics, high speed rail money meant for Florida is now heading to the welcoming arms of the Northeast.

The conservative governors who’ve rejected HSR funding are, I think, making a mistake for their states. But their fanaticism is sort of doing the country a favor. The worst possible outcome would be for regional political elites who don’t actually want rail infrastructure to say “yes” anyway for the short-term fiscal boost and then squander it.

-- The dirty truth about recyclable plastic:

Pitcairn Island, in the middle of the Pacific, offers a particularly poignant testimonial to the toxic impacts of the plastic debris whirling about at the center of our seas. Albatrosses from all over come to these islands to breed and raise their babies. Plastic bottle caps, like those atop kids’ juice containers, are plucked out of the water by albatrosses and fed to their fledglings, killing them.

-- And lastly, here's video of a rehabilitated baby seal getting its first taste of freedom.

This Northern Fur Seal was released back into the wild after being rehabilitated at the Island Wildlife Natural Care Centre in British Columbia. The seal, which was rehabilitated after washing ashore, was rehydrated and released on Salt Spring Island. The young seal looks almost surprised to be let go. At first he seems to be afraid to leave, but takes off full speed for the ocean as soon as he's confident.

-- Brian Foley


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