YOLO COUNTY NEWS

John Mott-Smith

Per Capita Davis: Things are heating up

Things are heating up, and not just in the presidential election. James Hansen, one of the first to sound the alarm about climate change, recently published the results of a study examining the percentage of the Earth’s surface (not counting the oceans) that experiences “extreme heat” in the summer. According to the study, this percentage […]

August 17, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: The reliability of our power supply

Back in February, I wrote a column about nuclear power and the trouble I was having balancing the risks against the benefits. Basically, is the benefit of energy generated without producing any greenhouse gas emissions worth the potential downsides of catastrophic meltdown and nuclear proliferation? I’m still gathering information (thanks to all who sent in […]

August 02, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: An energy survey of Manhattan

I recently traveled to New York, home of the United Nations, ostensibly for the purpose of observing an example of dense development and the ensuing consequences for greenhouse gas emissions. That was my cover story. The real (secret) purpose of my journey was to report in to my United Nations comrade, Agent 2100, about my […]

July 19, 2012 | Posted in Columns | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Yocha Dehe tribe has a commitment to stewardship

I recently had the opportunity (two, in fact) to learn what the Yocha Dehe Wintun Nation has done on its Cache Creek lands to increase energy efficiency, develop renewable energy and generally promote sustainability. Representatives from the tribe made a presentation to the Climate Change Compact of Yolo County on April 13. The compact is […]

July 05, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Lots of little things add up

Today’s column is filled with lots of little things culled from the news and various other sources. GUESS WHO SAID THAT: See if you can identify the author of the following quote (answer at bottom). “I’d put my money on the sun and solar energy. What a source of power! I hope we don’t have […]

June 21, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Is this a great town, or what?

Is this a great town, or what? Even after living here for 30-plus years I keep finding new reasons to be impressed. We may not live near the ocean, or enjoy the clear mountain air, but this is a special place. A NON-TAXABLE BIKE RIDE: On May 5, Davis Waste Removal held a free shredding […]

June 07, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Polls show an attitude adjustment

About 10 years ago, it seemed every opinion poll showed significant public awareness (usually 75 percent and up) of climate change and support for efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. In the past five years or so, the percentage has been reported as trending downwards to where it’s about a 50-50 proposition. Most reports attribute […]

May 17, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Rising temperatures are concerning

About a month ago, there was an article in the paper about the high temperatures in March in the United States. Of course, the usual disclaimer is still necessary: It’s not possible to draw a straight line between climate change and any one weather event. However, scientists have been warning from quite early on that […]

May 03, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Acting locally, acting globally

Bill McKibben, founder of the 350.org movement, spoke at the university on Monday. The place was packed, with all 400 seats full. McKibben is a writer and author of “The End of Nature” one of the first, if not the first, book warning about climate change. As I took my seat, I noticed a mom […]

April 19, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Biking around town

I really appreciate readers sending ideas for columns. Other ideas come from meetings, talks, conversations on the street and out of thin air. Although it may not be obvious from the columns I write, many take some thinking about, and I keep these ideas in mind for the future. Some folks offer an interesting factoid, […]

April 05, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: How much energy does your TV use?

A statistic can be revealing — conveying in a number what it may take paragraphs to describe in words. Of course, statistics also can be deceptive. A statement (usually) attributed to Mark Twain sums it up, so to speak: “There are three kinds of lies: lies, damned lies and statistics.” It used to be that […]

March 15, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Impolite conversation about climate change

The conversation over climate change in the public square has always been a bit strange, but it’s getting downright weird. Climate scientists and ordinary persons concerned about climate change are now being labeled by some as “watermelons” to indicate their green (environmental) exterior is concealing a red (communist) interior. This jaw-dropping charge of a communist […]

March 01, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Is nuclear power worth the dangers?

Well, I can’t put it off any longer. A small newspaper article buried deep in the interior pages on Sunday announced that the Nuclear Regulatory Commission has granted a license for two new nuclear reactors to be built in the state of Georgia. The plant will take a while to build — estimates are it […]

February 16, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

Per Capita Davis: Statistics show we’re using sun’s energy

How are we doing? Environment California recently released a report on the state of photovoltaic solar energy systems in California cities. The report included some surprises and some points of local interest. They looked at “distributed solar” systems installed on rooftops of homes and businesses by owners or third-party financing companies; utility scale solar systems […]

February 02, 2012 | Posted in Agriculture + Environment | Tagged ,

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