Spiral staircase at Ziggy and April’s new house at Dancing Rabbit Ecovillage
“At last, I’m here to report that April and I accomplished building the round wood spiral staircase. Over the course of five days, literally up to the day before we left Dancing Rabbit, we installed the risers and treads. [Shock! They’re selling their home and moving to Berea, KY.] The staircase design came from our dearest Tom Cundiff, who instructed us on the layout over the phone and in person during our last Timber Frame Workshop. It took us a while to fully grasp the layout and the flow of things, but once we fully understood the principles, it went fairly smoothly. Well, the physical side of building it was extremely physically taxing, but I digress.
And so this is our attempt at a timber frame-style wooden spiral staircase. Here’s more of what it looks like.”
“We have upgraded that letter of warning and refusal to the power company and it no longer fits in the allotted space here. You can find that by going to: jerryday.com On that home page, scroll down, way down, you will pass a large picture of an electric meter and a document called “Public Notice” (you will want to hang that on your electric meter).
Right below that is some short instructions titled TEXT OF LETTER FOR POWER COMPANY. The letter is right below that. Copy/paste that letter into your word processor, edit it according to the instructions, and send it to your power company. The sooner the better. They are sneaking these meters onto people’s homes by the thousands.
If you already have a digital meter (bad) go to FreedomTaker.com for a special legal notice forms (“Demand For Removal”, free download) and safe analog meter replacement kits ($69.95) legal notice forms and instructions included.
Take back your power! If you have questions, there is an email address and phone number at the bottom of the home page at FreedomTaker.com.”
“After several decades as an airline executive (including Delta president, Virgin America CEO and Lufthansa president/CEO), Fred Reid could have built a McMansion, but instead he chose to grow his home without taking on debt and embracing nature by adding small outbuildings.
When Reid bought his aunt’s Sonoma County property, he wanted to “recapture the indistinguishable border between indoors and outdoors that I had as a child in Ethiopia”. Instead of tearing down her tiny cottage, he made enlarged it a bit and opened it up to the outdoors with floor-to-ceiling windows or doors in nearly all the rooms, including the shower and toilet room.
Years later, he nestled a tiny cabin (a prefab from Modern Cabaña) in a redwood grove to serve as an office and guest space. In another Redwood grove, he built an observation tower treehouse as a second guesthouse or a personal retreat.”
“Government’s actions … shock the conscience of the Court” Hage family ranch protected from abusive federal agencies
The recent story about Cliven Bundy, the rancher in southeast Nevada who’s been harassed by the BLM, is not alone in his fight for land rights. Here’s a story from last year about one of Bundy’s neighbors. The point is to look into the facts instead of making a knee-jerk decision based on mainstream talking points. All the while keep in mind that what happens to these ranchers could very well be coming your way someday if these government agencies are not reined in.
“In an historic 104-page ruling, Chief Judge Robert C. Jones of the Federal District Court of Nevada has struck a major blow for property rights and, at the same time, has smacked down federal agencies that have been riding roughshod over Western ranchers and property owners. The long-awaited ruling, which had been expected before the end of last year, was finally issued at the end of May. The court case, U.S. v. Hage, has been keenly watched by legal analysts and constitutional scholars — but has been completely ignored by the major media.
Judge Jones accused the federal bureaucrats of racketeering under the federal RICO (Racketeer Influenced and Corruption Organizations) statute, and accused them as well of extortion, mail fraud, and fraud, in an effort “to kill the business of Mr. Hage.”
More at the source: New American (Excellent article, best on the subject so far.) War on the West: Why More Bundy Standoffs Are Coming
Jay is blocked on this topic until he apologizes for his abusive language about Cliven Bundy and learns to write with respect. Readers don’t have to agree with me, but please refrain from hate speech and name calling.
A sad bluegrass song yet to be written, with a lesson yet to be learned
At the Energy Council of Canada's Vancouver April 14 breakfast Roundtable titled Powering British Columbia’s Natural Gas Facilities: Opportunities, Implications, Issues I once again felt caught in the draft of Deputy Premier Rich Coleman’s head-down bull charge to catch an LNG train he keeps insisting is about to leave the station - if it hasn’t already.
Echoing what we’ve heard so many times before, the LNG industry reps on the panel had several clear, well-scripted, oft-repeated messages to dump onto the 60-odd BC energy industry experts and leaders in the room, which is to say:
1. If we don’t act right away, this amazing LNG export opportunity will be utterly lost to BC (forever apparently, since according to this logic China and the rest of the world will stop needing energy after 2020) ... but BC will certainly need energy after 2020 so why not save some gas, if it can be responsibly procured, for our own use down the generations?
2. That gorgeous kid called BC is all growed up now and dating the most studly energy players on the planet. Her dates keep whispering how serious they are about her, that she’s special to them because she’s smart and “understands the economy”, not just because she has such attractive…resource assets.
3. Really sorry about this, but there won't be any clean renewable energy powering what is by far the most energy intensive part of the LNG supply chain: the refrigeration and compression cycles will all be powered by fossil gas, because why should the LNG proponents take that risk even if it costs the same?
4. Perhaps, and this is only a maybe, some renewable energy, perhaps up to 5% of total new energy requirements of the BC LNG scheme may find its way into LNG production supply chain at some point (but you must understand we can't commit to that, nor say how or when, since it all just depends).
5. … did we remind you again that BC’s LNG is going to be the cleanest in the world? (Because the BC Government has finally corrected under BC law the centuries-wrong Oxford English Dictionary definition of the word ”clean”.)
6. uh … there is no number 6 because phrases along the lines of "climate change”, “fugitive emissions”, “ecosystem fragmentation”, “fracking impacts”, “downside risk” and "most recent IPCC report declaring the world must act now” were not mentioned during the entire set of presentations by industry members of the panel, nor by the moderator.
7. … and another minor detail not mentioned: that for all the electrical and gas energy currently consumed in BC today (55,000 GWh/y electricity plus 205 PJ/y gas) much, much more than that amount of gas-equivalent energy consumption will be gulped to power just the first few of the 15 BC LNG plants proposed, and even that enormous quantum will account for less than 10% of the gas's total GHG emissions, with the rest coming from fugitive emmisions and the actual burning of the gas in final use.
That’s a heck of a lot of new energy consumption for BC, potentially three times what we consume today, 95% of which will be fossil gas-fired. (How do you say goodbye to BC’s enviable green, clean status?)
For my part, and I don’t think I’m off the true mark, the BC Government's LNG story has way too many holes in it, particularly the big rush to market we keep hearing about. Rushing might possibly serve the gas industry and the election cycle, though it's more likely to put them too far ahead of themselves and into trouble; while conversely there is no way that rushing such a monster-sized scheme could helpfully address the godzillaesque environmental and social challenges that would surely emerge.
So what’s this rush really about? Can it be reduced to just a cynical push to generate gas scarcity in North America against new export demand so as to raise domestic gas prices away from today's North America-wide tight-gas losses? In other words, is this whole LNG export scheme just a way for the gas industry to reinvent itself via the miracles of directional drilling and fracking, to lock North America into a future dominated by fossil gas rather than renewables?
There are too many intolerable unknowns about the BC LNG export scheme. The undefined economic and environmental risks are too high to make this monumental energy policy swing so precipitously, and to wed our province in a dependent role to the world’s most powerful global industry for the next 50 years whatever the cost.
I’m not canonically against the use of fossil gas. I could support it as a large-scale transition fuel away from coal, and for transportation, but only if we find scientific consensus about how to economically solve the fugitive methane gas emissions challenge and the other significant ecosystem impacts.
I’d also like to know if anyone has written a detailed business case that clearly demonstrates why the rushed BC LNG export scheme is likely to lead to net economic and social benefits for BC’s residents, rate-payers and tax payers. So far, I haven’t seen one.