Wednesday, February 28, 2007

Olbermann debunks attack on Al Gore's energy use

Once again, conservative think tanks are out to pawn their slightly twisted, laundered, half-truths to the open public. This time the esteemed Tennessee Center for Public Policy got a hold of Al Gore's energy bills. This "non-partisan" group claims Gore is a hypocrite. Too bad they are a part of the American Enterprise Institute which continues to claim the skepticism around global warming (whether global warming is actually happening as well as the challenging the claim that humans play a role), take huge payouts from Big Oil and "cheerleads the war in Iraq."

Gotta love Olbermann's reply. Kudos to Tennesse Center for Public Policy for finding the real facts in this story...idiots.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Obama on 60 Minutes

I was immensely impressed by both Barack and his wife Michelle in their interview with Steve Kroft. By far two of the strongest most eloquent people I've heard run for president in a long time.

Obama's campaign released a new social networking site alongside their campaign website called "My" Its a good start and is definitely the closest to any Web 2.o standard than any other candidate but I think Howard Dean set an unrealistic bar when it came to internet ingenuity for a political campaign. Barack's tech team is certainly nipping at Dean's legacy though.

Monday, February 12, 2007

How much water does it take to make water?

Bottled water is one of the largest beverage industries in the world. Global consumption in 2004 grew to a staggering 41.1 billion gallons, up 6.5% since the previous year. In the U.S. the average American was consuming 25 gallons of bottled water annually. The U.S. market for bottled water has exploded growing by 15% in 2002 and 7.5% in 2004. How much water is that? About 7.357 billion gallons of bottled water.

Why do we drink so much of it? Most people believe that tap water isn't fit to drink because it comes out of a dirty faucet while bottled water has been "cleaned" and is therefore much more fitting to drink. But, hundreds of studies prove this assumption dead wrong. NRDC conducted its own tests and found no reason to believe that tap water is any cleaner than bottled water or vice versa. 22% of the bottled waters they tested contained chemical levels that were above strict state health limits. These chemicals and contaminates are able to avoid detection in standards testing because....well, because there is no standards testing. Bottled water has no international standards or committee that tests various types of water brands.

"Bottled water may be no safer or healthier than tap water, while selling for up to 1,000 times the price," the report said. The reason, according to the environmental group, is an absence of standards regulating bottled water.

Here's some more for your gourd: recently, it was discovered that some brands of water actually consume 7 times as much water to create the bottle than the amount of water the bottle holds itself. Seems a bit inefficient to me. Here's why thats possible.
He starts with the production of the bottle in China, taking the bottle blanks to Fiji, and confirming that it takes more water to make the bottle than it actually holds. He then transports the bottle to the States by ship. Not even including the distribution in the States, the numbers are absolutely staggering.
The world's obsession with bottled water has even started to produce a connoisseur elite that pride themselves on understanding the best that bottled water has to offer similar to those of us who take wine (maybe a bit too) seriously. Maybe, instead of having a wine steward at your next elegant dining experience, you'll have a water steward.

I'm off for a glass of fresh water straight from the exotic side of my bathroom sink.