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01 August 2015
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Petroleum Pipeline Threat to Wild Horses and Sage Grouse
by moth   
[Updated June 19 with related stories] Ken Salazar, Interior Secretary, has exposed his sullied hands in this scandal, brought to our attention by Culture Change correspondent moth. He knows intimately the sagebrush ecosystem and has been monitoring pipeline proposals and water issues in Nevada.

Why is the Bureau of Land Management (BLM) forcibly removing Nevada's wild horses? Is the reason the Ruby Pipeline connections?

 
Digital Nation? No Thanks!
by Peter Crabb   
One of the brilliant insights in Daniel Quinn’s 1992 novel Ishmael is that modern industrialized people do not know how to live. Humans have long been cut off from the contingencies of nature, first as a consequence of discovering the wholly unnatural skill of growing reliable food supplies in one place, and later as a side effect of learning how to manufacture wholly unnatural objects and environments. The resulting alienation from nature and from our ancestors’ nature-adapted ways of life left us clueless and susceptible to being sold ideas about how people should live, usually by the most audacious psychopath in the group.
 
Gulf Gusher and the Price of Oil and Gasoline
by Jan Lundberg, oil industry analyst   
Culture Change was asked about the impact from the Gulf oil gusher on the price of gasoline in 6 months, 12 months and 18 months from now:

It might be an interesting question for debate, with many possible opinions. There are too many variables to make forecasts with any certainty, so prognosticators would have to exclude all but one or two factors. There are these non-textbook questions: Will hurricanes wreak havoc? Will there be migration and refugees from the Gulf? Could a BP bankruptcy result, triggering broader corporate failures? The dismantling of BP or the massive downsizing and selling off of its assets are possible if criminal penalties plus anticipated fines prove as devastating for the corporation as its behavior has been for the Gulf of Mexico.

 
Energy Use in the US & Global Agri-Food Systems: Implications for Sustainable Agriculture
by Shirin Wertime   
During the 20th century, access to cheap and abundant sources of energy helped transform the world in countless ways. Extraction of fossil fuels led to a massive expansion in economic growth and agricultural production, and was one of the bases of a six-fold increase in human population. Petroleum, the most sought after fossil fuel, had the largest role in this transformation.
 
Book Review: “Rewild or Die” by Urban Scout
by Keith Farnish   
Coming to the writings of Urban Scout afresh, I’m immediately surprised that I hadn’t embraced him earlier -- maybe it was his apparent coolness that put me off, but then he makes a point of addressing this in one of the chapters of his new book, “Rewild or Die”.
 
The Only Answer for Counteracting the Gulf Oil Gusher
by Jan Lundberg, oil industry analyst   
News Release
For immediate release

Washington, D.C. - If 100,000 barrels a day of crude oil are gushing out of the damaged sea-floor well underneath where BP’s offshore oil rig used to perch, what can be done to offset this pollution immediately? Time is of the essence for the global ecosystem, not just for a part of the Gulf.

 
Ecological Denial on the Gulf Oil Disaster: U.S. Policies Continue Toward Collapse
by Jan Lundberg, oil industry analyst   
The impact of the Gulf oil disaster on the national psyche and the economy have barely begun. When Florida, a more substantial state than Louisiana, is hit by the unprecedented pollution assured to have lasting effects, the quickened erosion of confidence in government, industry and modern technology may accelerate the end of this current phase of U.S. society.
 
Discovering Human Closeness: Outside the U.S. (Part I)
by Jan Lundberg   
Thanks to a Bolivian merchant’s error of inserting an extra digit in a bank card charge, delaying my departure back to the Northern Hemisphere, my history was changed. In the three extra days in the country, where I needed to rest up after an altitude related illness, I reached a surprising level of involvement in the community where I happen to have gotten stuck. This was my journal entry:

The word “culture” does not suffice when experiencing the eye-opening revelations of days lived amongst aware people. I am fortunate to be doing this now in Bolivia.

 
Nut Case at the Wheel
by Jan Lundberg   
As the U.S. continues the incredibly wasteful misallocation of resources known as car production and everything that goes with it, the externalized costs in terms of global warming, oil spills, and human isolation as consumers, only mount.

Who is in charge of this mad policy of ecocide? We all are, but we did elect a president named Barack Obama.

 
Oil Gusher in Gulf: Energy Gluttony, not Oil Addiction, is Greater Challenge
by Jan Lundberg   
It's crazy that everyone was blindsided by the unprecedented BP oil rig explosion and oil well disaster, when it or a similar event had to happen eventually. Indeed, we now have a "new" wrinkle for petrocollapse. Petrocollapse has mostly referred to the effects of peak oil, but all is ecological in the final analysis.

Most people paying attention to the world at large know that millions of gallons of crude oil have been loosed, still gushing uncontrollably, threatening not only the Gulf of Mexico but beyond. Our report suggests more than clean-up and better oversite: the Committee Against Oil Exploration.

 
Climate Protection Movement Coming Together - From 350.org to Pachamama's Children
by Jan Lundberg   
There is good news on the climate activism front, based on first hand information coming in to Culture Change. But first, some necessary background:

The global struggle to save the climate and ensure our common survival takes various forms. The movement is not limited to just a few well known approaches, such as "politically realistic" legislation, conferences, or boosting renewable energy. As an example of a new force post-Copenhagen, there is momentum from last month's Bolivia gathering, particularly since the title of it included the Rights of Mother Earth.

 
Bolivia in Contrast: Feeding the Petroleum Industry amidst Local Resilience
by Jan Lundberg, photography by Bronwyn Lundberg   
ImageBefore presenting our latest photo-journalism direct from the just-concluded People´s Climate Conference, and disturbing you with news of road building and plastics manufacture in Bolivia, we ask you to bear with us one moment regarding the financing of our activism and reporting:

To complete this trip to Bolivia and follow it up properly, successful fundraising is key. We were almost alone at the Cochabamba climate conference when it comes to our issues or our slant on others' main issues.

 
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