Saturday, September 12, 2009

Is Your Drinking Water Safe in Your State?

This New York Times article and interactive map show the appalling violations of the Clean Water Act nationwide and the difficulties of enforcing compliance. It is distressing but not surprising to see that in Texas 70% of the facilities have had violations with very little success at enforcing corrections. I hope everyone of you who are reading this will boycott bottled water. Use a home filtration system, even a Brita pitcher, and fill up your own non-plastic bottle. Steel bottles are inexpensive, easy to clean, long-lasting and ultimately recyclable. Plastic bottles only contribute to the problem.

A related article debates how much weed killer is in our drinking water.

Wednesday, September 2, 2009

Where the Wild Things Were

Mr. Block's column in the New York Times reminded me of some of the writing we passionately discussed in our Chatham Nature Writing course. I had hoped that Block wouild credit Maurice Sendak for the appropriation of his title of his 46 year old classic Where the Wild Things Are but even so it is a thoughtful coming of age essay. Wasn't there a time in most of our childhoods when we dreamed of taming, befriending a wild creature?

Is Blasting a Mountain Away an Honor?

I have mixed feelings about this monument just as this columnist does. There is so much that could be done to honor great Native Americans but I just don't think this is the best way. When at the same time all over the country, no, actually all over the world, indigenous people are fighting to protect sacred places and environmentalists are trying to protect wild and natural places; how can anyone justify blowing up a mountain? And people applauded? For what?