Astronomy Picture of the Day

Sunday, June 30, 2013

Universal messages

I sent a message to the universe,
We are one.

The universe sent back a message,
Who are you?

I said,  I am you, you are me,
We are one.

The universe was puzzled
and i bet you thought you were the only puzzled one.

i told you
we are one.

Saturday, June 29, 2013

Psalm Challenge

Psalm Challenge 110

Psalm 110

Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)
110 I will praise thee, O Lord, with my whole heart; in the council of the just: and in the congregation.
2 Great are the works of the Lord: sought out according to all his wills
3 His work is praise and magnificence: and his justice continueth for ever and ever.
4 He hath made a remembrance of his wonderful works, being a merciful and gracious Lord:
5 he hath given food to them that fear him. He will be mindful for ever of his covenant:
6 he will shew forth to his people the power of his works.
7 That he may give them the inheritance of the Gentiles: the works of his hands are truth and judgment.
8 All his commandments are faithful: confirmed for ever and ever, made in truth and equity.
9 He hath sent redemption to his people: he hath commanded his covenant for ever. Holy and terrible is his name:
10 the fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom. A good understanding to all that do it: his praise continueth for ever and ever.
by Public Domain

meg: My Mom would not like the terrible part, the fear of the Lord part. She would say that is why our ancestors left Sweden or Slovakia. I don't remember which and cannot ask her anymore. I know if I could call her she would say, do not be afraid of the Lord. He is Merciful.
This version has a taste of fear,
and Redemption,
The Covenant, the Promise.
Another thought this week as the space probe tried to leave the solar system but the solar system,
kept a goin'
Now if that isn't cool!

mary's notes: another week goes by, this exercise began awhile ago following the host who has since been unable to participate. This post is dedicated to Robert and his family wherever they may be.
His exercise introduced me to other perspectives on the Psalm songs, one at a time.
Digestible. My weekly studies. Thanks to other friends who submit or have submitted their view of the psalm songs.
The movie, The Life and Times of Judge Roy Bean is the best movie Paul Newman ever made in my opinion, He Is Judge Roy Bean in the movie. As I read the psalms I see some of the lines he uses for eulogies after shooting a bad guy. The movie script pokes fun at some of the lines like blunted lion's teeth. The Judge stumbles through the eulogy and finally declares, "Bar's open!" Not to be disrespectful of the bible. But when a book is so difficult to decipher that it fails to teach or hold your attention, what good is it really? In this case he was eulogizing vicious criminals. Like I said, his best acting role ever and I love all his movies.

Revolutionary War Reenactment [SIV313]

Thanks to Eva Sollinger, 7 days for posting her video on her channel
Stuck in Vermont

Nice video showing show glimpses at early America.

Updates on Gaz Pipeline Perils

Updates on gaz Pipeline Perils...
Josh Fox interview on the Daily Show...
Well done!

what is the inside track the gaz peeps seem to have?

the town won't even return my emails and they have been cozy with the
canadian gaz dudes for a year...
It is not too late to change your mind addison county
if this pipeline goes in
and the aquifer is contaminated
maybe we will distill gaz
from our well.

Blogging Forward: POSTCARDY: the postcard explorer: Dobsina Ice Cave

Ice Cave and fun postcard blogger's story from old Slovakia

POSTCARDY: the postcard explorer: Dobsina Ice Cave: This postcard shows a 1905 view of ice skating in the Dobsina Ice Cave. The location was part of Hungary when this postcard was publishe...

And I was resisting the urge to post the picture from the darkest hours sunlight wise in winter.
It is So light now, long beautiful days except when it rains too hard. Floods going on right now in Vermont. Floods on floods.
So close your eyes and flip on if you cannot look at the companion to Ice Caves.
I looked at the cave picture and feel cooler...was it some dNA bound memory?

This picture below is the dead of Vermont winter,
about 6 months from now.
As Now is light, then is Dark.

I wonderered if it could feel cooler to look at snow.
Otherwise I cannot even comprehend this photo right now.


Friday, June 28, 2013

Bucket List of Revolutions


Friday Music &

Bucket List of Revolutions

World Peace & Tolerance.
Synergistic Miracles Occur.
Science Debunked Except for
Love, which is Scientifically Validated,
Replicated & Positively Disseminated.
No Hateful crimes,
Or Mean People.
Worker Equity,
Health & Living Accessible,
Creeps & Bad people accountable,
Bad things stopped before they happen,
Good things are allowed to happen,
Little people really can,
Big people are no more.
Think about this list and if it sounds good to you,
 keep it spinning around
the planet like a ball of yarn.
happy friday,
Oh yes, now for some music...
Found this YT link
with Amy Helm, Some Handsome Strangers
Love this song!

and (Sorry-first edition of my post had a typo...Conor Kennedy is in this video---

many or all will be at Levon's Barn in Woodstock tonight.
Check out Amy Helm's website and buy some music!

Thursday, June 27, 2013

Alexis P. Suter "Didn't It Rain", Floydfest 2010

So This is the YT link version I was trying to get back to...
Alexis, You are an amazing Woman!!

Big Bill Broonzy-Key to the Highway

Great the Blues



Such Humility,
I did not mean for
it to start that way.

We had high hopes,
Fighting invisible foes,
Demons dead so long ago.

History coming 'round,
Putting us straight down,
Our shields useless
Against this foe.

As we face our fears,
Discover strengths'
Inner ear,
Throw the veil aside,
Truth it cannot hide,
or will it be

Tuesday, June 25, 2013

Monday, June 24, 2013

Sunday, June 23, 2013

Link to article showing anti pipeline arguments

For those of you engaged in the Vermont pipeline
Link to good article
in Vermont Digger

WCAX TV also dug down, a bit south of here in the fair town of Cornwall.

Will post that link when I find it again...

pipeline no haiku #1:

Pipeline, No, We say,
Don't Come Back another Day
Gaz, Gaz Go away.

link to a few minutes of heaven

a little bit.....

Saturday, June 22, 2013

Psalm Challenge 109

Psalm Challenge 109

Psalm 109

Douay-Rheims 1899 American Edition (DRA)
109 The Lord said to my Lord: Sit thou at my right hand: Until I make thy enemies thy footstool.
2 The Lord will send forth the sceptre of thy power out of Sion: rule thou in the midst of thy enemies.
3 With thee is the principality in the day of thy strength: in the brightness of the saints: from the womb before the day star I begot thee.
4 The Lord hath sworn, and he will not repent: Thou art a priest for ever according to the order of Melchisedech.
5 The Lord at thy right hand hath broken kings in the day of his wrath.
6 He shall judge among nations, he shall fill ruins: he shall crush the heads in the land of the many.
7 He shall drink of the torrent in the way: therefore shall he lift up the head.

Douay-Rheims 1899 American
by public domain

notes by mary:
I kept trying to write my comments here before mowing the lawn.
My edits would not save. Was lucky to get the post to at least show up,
my favorite translations from1899.

I keep seeing the trust we must have that God will right the wrongs.

Peonies, lake and bridge memories

Friday, June 21, 2013

2 Larry Campbell & Teresa Williams - "Keep Your Lamps Trimmed and Burning"

Music suitable for Friday..or any day..
The talented and powerful singer Teresa and her band of strings.

Summer Solstice greetings

Summer Solstice Greetings

the longest daylight day in Vermont.

Fort Ticonderoga Summertime
Relive history at the Fort.

Go to a re-enactment

Crown Point, N.Y.


Thursday, June 20, 2013

Three Longest Days 2

Three Longest Days 2

The Sun, Father Sun,
Lingered above the horizon,
a few moments longer than yesterday,
tomorrow the longest,
then they decrease in length
until just before Christmas.

Only the days are not really longer,
or shorter,
Just more daylight time,
Infusing the North Country
With an energy burst
after a long cold winter.

(note: Saranac Lake hit 32°f  a few days ago... days refreshing)

Wednesday, June 19, 2013

2 Years Ago

needing  to post re-runs
jet lag.  
I like my bridge movies.

this one almost
2 Years ago

Tuesday, June 18, 2013

the monkton letters

the monkton letters

i got back from the land of lincoln with a mission
i visited my dad, a 90 year old marine veteran of ww2
he is a native missourian
show me state
st. louis city boy
postman philosopher
hard working tough son of a gun
change of life baby
his mom born 132 years ago.1881.
fell in love with his soul mate my mom betsy
who has left the material plane
but who was right with me on my shoulder
as i tried to reach my father
and settled for a warm hand holding hug and a kiss
shirley maclaine explained on the way home on the plane
in my ear buds at 39,000 feet
she said soul mates are 2 of the same person, separated long ago in mu.
so couples who bicker a bit may be actual soul mates
fred and I are soul mates
as were my parents
meanwhile it is up to me to continue to fight injustice,
cruelty, and wrong stuff. You know it when you see it,
unless it is in the dark.
Here, let me turn the light on...

a letter i sent to the town after they tried to sell my property
more to come

My search for common practice in Vermont was replied by a woman from the State. see below

By the way, David Rath is a former attorney of ours.

Rod never spoke with me or tried to contact me in any way.

I will forward my communication with your lawyer.

Mary Gerdt


If you have access to the Internet you may find the Delinquent Tax Collector’s Handbook at the Vermont League of Cities and Towns website helpful (http://resources.vlct.or/browse/?c=8) 


Generally, towns are encouraged to have a procedure that indicates what steps are to be taken when a taxpayer goes delinquent.  The procedure is meant to insure that each delinquent tax case is handled in essentially the same manner, i.e., at what point does the town initiate delinquent tax sale proceedings, etc.  Secondly, Vermont law requires the delinquent tax collector to take specific steps to notify the taxpayer and the town about a delinquent tax sale (32 V.S.A. Sections 5252 and 5253).  Lastly,  the taxpayer whose property is sold has a right to redeem the property, within one year from the day of sale, by paying the sum for which the property was sold plus interest to the delinquent tax collector.  32 V.S.A. Section 5260.


The Handbook will give you a good description in layman’s language of the process.  If you do wish to look at the specific laws (the 32 V.S.A. is a reference to Vermont Statutes Annotated or, in other words, the laws of the State of Vermont)cited in this message or in the Handbook, you can read the statute on-line by going to


I would also suggest that you contact the delinquent tax collector directly and ask if there is anything that can be done to prevent a tax sale.  Perhaps a payment plan can be worked out. 


Hope this information is helpful.


Ellen Tofferi
Deputy Commissioner
Department of Taxes
133 State Street
Montpelier, VT  05633


From: []
Sent: Monday, November 30, 2009 6:20 PM
To: Tofferi, Ellen
Subject: Regarding payment of property taxes


Hello Ellen Tofferi,

I contacted Secretary if State Deb Markowitz about some issues I have related to a "tax sale" of my property.

She suggested you might know some answers to my questions related to property taxes.


My husband was supposed to pay the property taxes last year. He used a check from an account the bank closed after we refinanced due to my husband losing his job and general hard times.

When the check bounced, we were assessed 8 percent that day.

My husband, in good faith at the time felt we could pay it by the following November.

He errantly did not tell me any of this, but neither did anyone else.


After only 9 months arrears in taxes and no notice to me, a female co-owner wife citizen of Monkton, the town threatened to sell something we own for the taxes. I have yet to see the document the town lawyer drew up. He was an old attorney of ours and I feel he should have tried to find me or the tax collector or someone.


The property taxes are in my understanding, partially state mandated and there are many guidelines for municipalities to follow.


There is however apparently no recourse for me but to hire an attorney or go to the newspapers and tell the rest of the "minor" landowners to watch out for the tax man.


There are other properties in town as recently as 2007 that were 5 years in arrears.


I was never notified of my right to abatement, appeal, or to be appointed a guardian if I was babbling in the cellar.


Any light you could shed would be welcome,



Mary Gerdt


Back to the Rant Race....


Back to the Rant Race...

(can we ever stop? No!)
racing, racing to keep on top of this pipeline talk.
I appreciate this article because Mr. Dillon actually quoted a landowner.
Still want more probing questions of Canadian owned Vt Gaz.
Where is your deed for underground gas pipelines?
Why don't you go down the New York Side instead of under the 6th Great lake.
Who decided to veer off path through Jane's Garden?
When the pipeline inevitably ruptures, who gets there first and gets hurt?
Will you lock in gas rates forever and guarantee all residents of Monkton gets access?
Will you set aside, say 50 Billion in case you ruin 41 miles of Vermont environment.
Oh, the stuff in the air is worse, no?
If you charged the ratepayers in Chittenden and Franklin County more to pay for the pipeline, who pays them back? Addison County? The International Paper Mill? (That already has the fragrance de papier mill...They should get their supply from New York pipeline, No?
When you bought up all the power Mr Wark, did you figure the Gaz would be a piece of cake too?
People in our town cannot even sell rocks without a fight.
Here is the article and a thoughtful response by Jane.


Monday, June 17, 2013

One Day

One More Day

Another Day

That is all it was,
Just a day.

Rotating Earth,
Makes a day,
Same place tomorrow
Turn around

He Could not say much much and
We held hands,
He could not focus,
More blind than not.

He understood a little
and lost the rest,
Each conversation a struggle,
I understood some, said,"What?" a lot.

I told him I was there to visit,
and we were leaving to go home,
My home of the last 30 years,
This was the home of my first 20.

I longed to hear profound words,
philosophy of the Postman,
My Dad.

Word salad on the menu,
Failing connections,
Puzzling looks, squinting eyes,
Me longing to hear his dissent again,
Of living in"the home"

Instead the words,
Calm and relaxed,
One More Day,
He said.

It was one more day we had together,
Seized for the moment,
Transient and Fleeting,
Plain as Day,
 Plain Day on the Plains,
It was
One More Day

Sunday, June 16, 2013

Father's Day

I will remember that the one Sunday a year that Dad would answer the phone was
Father's Day,
As I held his thin frail hand,
I remembered him taking me to the old IGA on Main Street,
The older IGA before the other old IGA,
It had those creaky wooden floors.
Dad told me to get the cereal I liked,
My heart smiling,
Second thought,
Any cereal?
Yes, he told me by his dry subtle smile.
Cocoa puffs, I picked,
My box.
I will never forget.

Saturday, June 15, 2013

Travelogue for the Universe: Halls of Shame

One more..all for tonight...

Travelogue for the Universe: Halls of Shame: notes: i know you may have heard all this before. i am sending this letter to the 2 newspapers in my area. this is the unabridged version. t...

Travelogue for the Universe: Sprachlos

I am going to post a few more then let it rest for a few days...
from the archives...

Travelogue for the Universe: Sprachlos: Sprachlos is one German word I use instead of the English "speechless". In fact Speechless implies "less speech". ...

Travelogue for the Universe: Cross Hairs

Oh it was a difficult time.
I tried to describe how it felt when the Town of .Monkton,Vermont was going to sell my property without one town official notifying me. My former lawyer never warned me. In fact, he was the lawyer who closed on land trust land abutting my swamp lot. He was at parties at my old house that he closed on. No, people do not have to be kind or ethical, esp.lawyers and town officials. Yes, disillusionment still never fails to hit me broadside. Even now.meg

Travelogue for the Universe: Cross Hairs: Cross Hairs 2010 by Mary E. Gerdt Some saw us or what we have as a target And we got Caught in the crosshairs Of their...

Travelogue for the Universe: Change in the Weather

Replay from days past but not forgotten....

Travelogue for the Universe: Change in the Weather: I have not said much about the dreaded global weather debate. It is an argument which is as futile and silly as arguing with my cat Tommy. ...

Travelogue for the Universe: Earth

i looked again at my bad dream painting,
bringing back the memories of the time the town was going to take my property for taxes, penalties, paid 9 months late.
i felt so small, alone.
replaying some posts from those days.
preparing to post the letters i have sent the town.

Travelogue for the Universe: Earth: Earth, Our planet home, Best visible from afar, in fact the space travelers photos giving us the whole picture in one gulp. Earth, so...

Psalm Challenge 108

Psalm Challenge 108

mary's bad dream

12 Give us help from trouble: for vain is the help of man.
13 Through God we shall do valiantly: for he it is that shall tread down our enemies.

King James Version by Public Domain

Visions of Future's Gate

Visions of Future's Gate

Started staring at Future's Gate,

Out of focus, blurry, fuzzy,strange,
I could not recognize the shape, the color, the net reality,
Once I thought I saw the future,
Was it a mirage?
Then the images gone
so fast.

Was there any point
In staring longer
at the gate,
Would the vision

Then the future crept close slowly,
Then All at once or so it seemed,
On towards the end,
To become the present
And Future's Gate
Eluded me

Friday, June 14, 2013

Friday musik for Dad

Dad, I loved to watch you listen to Big Band Music....esp Glenn

his hand

I held his hand

once so powerful,
now a weak and frail hand.

all the hard times
honed his core of strength,
now his strength is a burden
keeping him from joining mom.

go see mom he kept saying,
i could not remind him,
she is gone,
was it torture?
no just the painful to watch
dwindles of an old man.

how can I,
I thought,
make all this better?

for him, me, everyone?

I am at a loss, too close to him,
all i could do was hold his hand,
breathe in his pain and suffering,
and exhale slowly
visualizing his serenity and peace at last.

Thursday, June 13, 2013

Filtered Sunlight

sunlight through sugar maple leaves

Filtered Sunlight Shone

Through the sugar maple leaves

Coloring my day

have you heard of #twaiku?
my friend Judy who writes Peace be with you
practices the haiku perfectly,
it is fun to twy and yesterday i twied some twitter-haiku.
forgot the darn # tag but working on it...
finally, no matter how many fall tree pictures you take,
you can come close,
but never quite the same,
as seeing this in person.


Wednesday, June 12, 2013

More Stop Pipeline updated with community response...

Message was received in my listserv and I believe it has such a thoughtful
response, I must repeat it here, in the continuing Pipeline fight.
there is a religious, a human, a practical, a thoughtful approach,
and it follows below. by repeating this message
like a prayer,
the energy may flow
and the light may shine.
My prayer, stop the pipeline.meg

Here is the Quakers' Addison Independent letter:

"Officials urged to reject pipeline

We of the Climate Committee of Middlebury Friends Meeting
(Quakers) appreciate the
challenge faced by the Middlebury selectboard in drafting a response to
the Vermont
Gas pipeline proposal. We respect Angelo Lynn's editorial assertion that
actions on a local scale is more complex, and difficult, than if the
health of the
planet and its ecosystems were their sole concern.
However, as Quakers we are encouraged to consider the best action
in light of both
the local and the global, and for the future as well as the present. Does
fracked gas to Addison County, no matter whether it seems cheaper in the
term, serve the best interests of our children's children? Does it
represent the
best stewardship of our plants and soil, which sustain us? Will it delay the
transition to cleaner renewable energy? Does it respect the water rights
of those
living where fracking is permitted?
Global decisions are the sum of many thousands of local ones. The
sacrifices of
convenience and cost that we know will someday have to be made begin on
the most
personal level. There are alternatives to burning dirty fossil fuels,
with energy efficiency and radical conservation and extending to renewable
sources. Rather than kicking the worsening problem into the future, we
believe that
now is the moment to make the right local decision.
Is it easier for a faith-based group to stand up to dirty fuel and
interests than a selectboard? Absolutely. But changing their stand to one
instead favors life and future-affirming values will mark them more heroic in
future history books than we could ever hope to be. We would be so proud
of our
selectboard if it courageously took the long view rather than a position of
expedience supporting the status quo.
Be courageous, we say. Now is the time.

Climate Committee
Middlebury Friends Meeting (Quakers)
Chris Stackhouse
Winslow Colwell
Ted Colwell
Spencer Putnam
Fran Putnam
Claudia Stoscheck
Tom Nicholson
Laura Asermily"

Pipeline Talking Points. Turn off if you have pipeline fatigue.

Pipeline Talking Points from my listserv,

representing hundreds of landowners, business owners, farmers,

workers, housewives, nurses,

people who care deeply about our environment, our water, our wells, our neighborhoods, our idyllic pastoral town, and those who are born to the above people, who wil inevitably inherit the environment we leave to them.

like me.

No newspaper here, far in the hinterlands,

where the roads end, we have to yell to the world,

to be heard at the town hall.

Feeling unable to fight this situation by saying how it all affects me or my neighbor.

Better to have succinct points,

are you still with me?


1. The ANGP would not reduce Vermonters’ dependence on fossil fuel. It would only facilitate replacing one fossil fuel for another.

2. VGS sells gas extracted by hydraulic fracturing. While Vermont has banned hydraulic fracturing within its own borders, the ANGP would sharply increase the utilization of fracked gas within Vermont, thus contributing to the expansion of fracking outside its borders.

3. VGS’ claims of reduced greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions do not include leakage rates in the extraction, transmission and distribution of natural gas. The GHG effect of methane is 100 times that of CO2 in the first twenty years, and current leakage rates make natural gas a worse choice than either coal or oil. It is not “cleaner.”

4. The ANGP would only reduce Vermont's annual GHG emissions by 0.16%, and this small amount would be offset by the amount of methane leakage in the extraction of the gas. By contrast, weatherization would reduce GHG emissions by a rate 30 times greater than emission reductions for the ANGP and create far more jobs, strengthening the local economy.

5. Research conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that up to nine percent of gas leaks from wells, more than double the official inventory, but in line with estimates made in 2011 by a Cornell University research team who also tested for methane leaks around active wells.

6. A recent Stanford University study found that New York state alone could supply 99 percent of the entire state’s energy needs from renewables within 20 years. This is the model Vermont should consider in order to reach the goal of 90% renewables by 2050.


1. VGS’s proposed route has Vermonters’ homes situated permanently within the “Potential Impact Radius,” the area within which everything would be destroyed in the event of an accident.

2. In the U.S., approximately 27 serious natural gas incidents are reported each year on average, according to the Department of Transportation, resulting in an average of nine deaths, 45 injuries, and reported property damages totaling over $5.6 million. - From the Christian Science Monitor

Explosion, fire, death, and destruction - it's only a matter of when and where – and VGS cannot guarantee there will never be an explosion.


It is unethical to facilitate the expansion of the toxic practice of hydraulic fracturing outside Vermont by increasing the market demand for natural gas within Vermont, and it is unethical to impose risk of death and destruction on communities and landowners within Vermont in so that large corporations and a small percentage of landowners may save money in the short term on their fuel bills.


1. Proponents of the ANGP claim Addison County and the western corridor of Vermont are at a serious economic disadvantage compared to other counties that have natural gas service, and that this “disadvantage” requires swift action to serve these areas with natural gas in order to help these areas retain and create new jobs. This is false. Vermont’s unemployment rate as of April 2013 is 4.0%, third lowest in the nation. Addison and Rutland counties both have unemployment rates that are proportional to their pre-recession rates.

2. Business development entities that support the ANGP claim natural gas service will help maintain and create new jobs. There is no data to support the position that natural gas service is an important factor that causes businesses to succeed or fail, or that natural gas service increases employment.

3. The ANGP is estimated to create only 20 new jobs per year. Weatherizing homes in Vermont would create 800 new jobs.

4. Claims that the ANGP will create more jobs are speculative. There is no guarantee businesses that would receive natural gas service will hire more employees.

5. Projected savings claimed by VGS for natural gas users are based on the assumption that natural gas prices will remain at historic lows indefinitely.

6. Claimed savings are overstated and short-term. The collapse in natural gas prices puts the price below cost of production, an unsustainable situation for drilling companies. Thus, businesses and residents who would convert to natural gas can expect prices to rise significantly in the next few years as prices rise to exceed cost of extraction.

7. ANGP phase II is solely paid for and intended to supply International Paper (IP) in New York. VGS states over 70% of the gas transmitted through the entire pipeline will be consumed by IP. This is not in the interests of Vermont or Vermonters.

8. Ratepayers of Chittenden and Franklin counties would pay $66.6 million of the ANGP construction costs, which will extend service to only 3,000 households. Comparatively, $66.6 million divided by the 14,150 households in Addison County would provide $4,703 per home for weatherization. Weatherization would cut BTU use by 20-30% per year, saving a homeowner $1,000 annually.

9. The financial dividends of weatherization far outstrip the short-term savings of natural gas service. It costs $2,000 - $5,000 for the average homeowner to convert to natural gas. This same investment in weatherization reduces overall fossil fuel use, and reduces heating costs over the lifetime of the house, as opposed to the short term savings of temporarily low natural gas prices.


1. VGS has applied to the Public Service Board (PSB) for a “Certificate of Public Good” in order to construct their project. “Public Good” is an ill-defined, unquantifiable concept. Shouldn’t we better define the “Public Good” before we confiscate Vermont citizens property to hand over to a multi-national corporation?

2. Affected landowners have no voice in the PSB Section 248 process unless they spend many thousands of dollars on attorneys to protect their property rights against a multi-billion dollar corporation.

3. VGS objected to participation in the PSB Section 248 process by any group who may present an opposing point of view.

4. Corporations who stand to gain economic benefit by future phases of the pipeline not yet filed with the PSB have been granted intervener status in the PSB Section 248 process for Phase I. Meanwhile, potential affected landowners for future phases do not have the same opportunity to seek intervener status because routes have not been finalized.



Climate Impacts of Shale Gas Development

Hydrocarbon Emissions Characterization in the Colorado Front Range

CFR Title 49 Vol. 3 Sec. 192.903

The Weatherization Assistance Program Briefing Book

Vermont Unemployment Statistics

and if that fails, I decided I would post a gratuitous catchy cat photo to appeal to that side of your brain,
hey, the lizard worked for g*#c*!


Locust Morning


Locust Morning...first run through, I need to add music.

Hope you like it wherever in the world you are.
The blossoms now coming down like snow, good luck but what a mess.
Good with the bad, nature's way.

Tuesday, June 11, 2013

Monkton Chronicle Guest Editorial...

This morning I again remembered my words I wrote about when Mom left the material plane.
The honey was gone, or the comb, I am not sure which, but one is gone forever.
Bees have always had intense range of meanings to me, from phobias to reverence. Boy we missed them the year or two where there seemed to be no bees. Now neighbors and nature are busy as a bee.
These beekeepers south of here care as much about keeping the pipeline out of gardens as I do and thousands of others who oppose. This is a guest editorial and visit their website too for fun shopping and info!

Here is the letter to the editor as it appeared in the May 27th edition of the Addison Independent....
by Ross Conrad and Alice Eckles

Selectboard ignored safety concerns while backing gas pipeline project
We appreciate the Middlebury selectboard's sharing their reasons for their continued endorsement of the Addison Natural Gas Project, however it appears that a reality check is in order.
The selectboard says that the facts don't support concerns about the increased danger the pipeline will represent. I guess the pipeline leaks that Vermont Gas experienced last month (in St. Albans on April 24, and in Hinesburg on April 25) and the leak less than a month later on May 21 in South Burlington don't count. Thankfully, no spark ignited these leaks causing a deadly explosion and fire.
The selectboard also cites lower greenhouse gas emissions as a reason for supporting the Vermont Gas pipeline. Unfortunately, research conducted by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration found that up to 9 percent of the gas leaks from gas wells, more than double the official inventory but in line with estimates made in 2011 by a Cornell University research team who also tested for methane leaks around active wells.
Then there is the study published in the journal Atmospheric Environment by a UC Santa Barbara scientist who tested air samples across large parts of the U.S. during a cross-country drive and found methane emissions far higher than expected, confirming the more localized studies. This would not be a problem if not for the fact that methane is over 100 times more potent a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide in the short term and about 21 times more potent in accelerating climate change in the long term.
While our selectboard prides itself on making decisions based upon the best information available, it appears that in this case the "best information" considered by the selectboard is a report by the U.S. EPA, an organization with the conflicting job of being both a regulatory agency and promoter of the fossil fuel industry. EPA estimates are not based on extensive direct measurement, monitoring and reporting of hard data, but are calculated indirectly by applying estimated emission factors to data on the total amount of gas produced. An audit by the inspector general of the EPA cited the agency for lacking "directly measured air emissions data" and "a comprehensive strategy for improving air emissions data for the oil and gas industry." The inspector general also found that "about half" of the EPA emissions factors were based on insufficient or low-quality data.
The board's letter declares their agreement that "renewables are necessary for a sustainable future" and notes a United Nations report that predicts up to 21 percent of industrial energy usage will be from renewables by 2050. They are failing to act upon this recognition since support of the pipeline delays progress on implementing our renewable energy infrastructure. They instead acknowledge other studies with slightly higher numbers, but with the overall message that we will be depending on coal, oil, gas, and nuclear power for many years to come.
They must not be aware of the recent Stanford University study that found that New York state alone could supply 99 percent of the entire state's energy needs from renewables within 20 years. With the realization that today, Germany meets about 40 percent of its energy needs from renewables, it appears that the real reason we will be relying on nuclear and fossil fuels for many years to come, is because our political and business leaders continue to invest in fossil fuel infrastructure and delay investment in renewable energy...the Middlebury falls hydro-electricity project that has been languishing on the drawing board for several years now comes to mind.

Selectman Nick Artim has stated that the majority of town residents support the pipeline project. However, since no vote has been held on the issue and no polling has been done to gauge residents' opinions, any statement that a majority of citizens either support or oppose the gas pipeline project is just speculation. If the selectboard were serious about allowing Middlebury residents the ability to choose among our energy options, it would allow a vote on whether the town should support the pipeline.
The selectboard also claims that economic savings by businesses are necessary to create jobs, and suggests that we are suffering from some kind of job crisis. The data do not support the position that natural gas service in an important factor that causes businesses to succeed or fail, or impact the hiring of workers. Vermont's unemployment rate, seasonably adjusted, was 4.1 percent in March, third lowest in the nation. Compare that to the rates of states that have the most dense interstate natural gas transmission lines in the nation: Ohio, 7.1 percent; Pennsylvania, 7.9 percent; New York, 8.2 percent; West Virginia, 7.0 percent; Texas, 6.4 percent; Louisiana, 6.2 percent. Clearly, variables other than natural gas infrastructure have a greater influence on the economic condition of a state or a county.
And yet, the strongest argument in favor of the pipeline made by the selectboard is economics. Vermont Gas Systems will make hundreds of millions of dollars for their Canadian owners if the pipeline is built. Unfortunately, the rest of the businesses and residents who decide to buy fracked Canadian gas can expect prices to rise significantly in the next few years because the collapse in natural gas prices dropped the price below the cost of production, an unsustainable situation for drilling companies. Thus, claimed savings of $200 million over 20 years that Middlebury can expect are grossly overstated. Savings will only be short-term.
If the selectboard were serious about taking action to reduce emissions, protect the environment, support the local economy, grow jobs, provide long-term savings on fuel costs, and support the position of the majority of residents, they would abandon further fossil fuel infrastructure development and aggressively pursue renewables and energy efficiency. This past year a Vermont legislative task force determined that it would take about $27 million to retrofit 80,000 Vermont homes for energy efficiency while providing energy cost savings and jobs, actions that polls have shown the majority of Vermonters support. For the price of the Addison Natural Gas Project, we could retrofit every home in Addison County with the latest energy-efficiency upgrades and still have money left to install solar panels on many homes. However, it looks like our selectboard is not going to allow facts to get in their way.

Ross Conrad and Alice Eckles

Bees be with you,
Ross Conrad
Dancing Bee Gardens
Please Consider Your Impact On The Environment Before Printing This
“The bee is more honored than other animals, not because she labors,
but because she labors for others”
-Saint John Chrysostom

"We don’t have to engage in grand, heroic actions to participate in the process of change. Small acts, when multiplied by millions of people, can transform the world." – Howard Zinn