Robust Redhorse Rises Reluctantly. Really.

OK, I'll admit it: I'm posting this mostly because I love fishing (Micropterus salmoides fears me) and this is a cool story. But even though the story is about a fish native to the PeeDee River, the natural history of the robust redhorse (that's a fish) is a cautionary tale about erosion, soil runoff, and the importance of protecting watersheds -- issues of local interest, I do believe.

The fish is cool, too. Did I say that?

What's A Little Toxic Sludge Between Friends?

Wheww. It appears they've found the barrels of toxic waste that went missing in January from the demolition of the University's Medical Science Research Building. This hasn't assuaged the concerns of subcontractor Southern Site & Environmental Corporation, who apparently took the barrels away to test them, after having their complaints about the presence of toxic waste at the site rebuffed. According the firm's lawyer, they found mercury and arsenic after being assured that the site was safe. The company believes the University has broken state law by exposing its workers to the toxic waste; the University says the waste was well-contained and that workers had been instructed to stay away from it. The state Department of Environment and Natural Resources is investigating.

[The subcontractor] expressed their concerns last Thursday in a letter to Doug Holyfield, director of compliance for the state Department of Environment and Natural Resources.

Climate Change Forecast: Warmer but Still Snowy

They may have their tongues in cheek (it's hard to tell), but the editors of the Chapel Hill Herald today told us that "We know all about global warming. We just don't believe it."

The reason for this leap into irrationality: the several snow events that we've had this winter.

The Herald appears to be committing the common error of confusing climate with weather. Weather is the state of the climate at a given time and place. Climate describes long term weather patterns. Global warming is about climate change. Yesterday’s storm was the weather.

Among the impacts of climate change are increases in and changing patterns of precipitation. Increased precipitation during the winter, even at a degree or two warmer, will usually result in more snow.

Explore Carolina North on Sunday

I just received the following announcement from the Friends of Bolin Creek. Sounds like a fun and educational trip.

Friends of Bolin Creek Walk: The Impact of Carolina North on Bolin Creek Watershed

February 29, 2004 at 2:00 p.m.
Beginning at Seawell Elementary School Parking Lot

Walk the Ground!
See how UNC's Plans might impact the Land and Bolin Creek

For More Information
Call Dave Otto 966-6226 or Dave Cook 942-5315

Don't Drink the Water

No, I'm just exagerating. But maybe I will stock up on bottled water next week...

In the month of March, 2004 as in March of 2003, OWASA will again use chlorine instead of chloramines for disinfection. The purpose of this change, which occurs annually, is to help ensure a high level of disinfection in the community’s network of water mains.

North Carolina standards require OWASA, and other utilities that normally use chloramines for disinfection, to instead use chlorine for one month each year. For example, the Cities of Raleigh and Durham and Towns of Cary and Apex will also use chlorine for disinfection in March instead of chloramines.- OWASA Press Release

I have heard (and observed) that the tap water is pretty "hard" in my neighborhood. You can smell the chlorine when you turn on the shower, I even feel it drying out my skin. Is this really worse in Northside than other neighborhoods? One friend's theory had to do with proximity of the plant, but then folks in Carrboro would have it even worse.



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