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A crazy world indeed

http://www.nytimes.com/2016/12/21/world/delta-air-lines-adam-saleh.html?emc=edit_th_20161222&nl=todaysheadlines&nlid=63020495&_r=0

In May, an Italian professor was removed from an American Airlines flight because another passenger was alarmed by his handwritten notes, which were in fact math equations.

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Adam Saleh, center, and Slim Albaher, right, after arriving at Kennedy International Airport on Wednesday. The men said they had been asked to leave their flight at Heathrow Airport after Mr. Saleh spoke in Arabic to his mother by phone.
Credit
Kevin Hagen for The New York Times

Quand s’arrêtera la folie de l’HOMME!!!!!!

Quand s’arrêtera la folie de l’HOMME!!!!!!

 27 images qui montrent qu’il est peut-être déjà trop tard … #6 est très dérangeante.

voir toutes les images ici :
http://www.feroce.co/notre-monde/

Parfois, les mots peuvent paraître superflus. Ces images parlent d’elles-mêmes.
1. Une vue de dessus de la métropole surdéveloppée de Mexico City (20 millions d’habitants).
wpid-6aa8afd7be9133d6d91fe6ff57ce9800-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
2. Le cadavre pourri d’un éléphant tué par des braconniers.
wpid-767a6d013e6d3fcbb773eb6842715142-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
3. La forêt amazonienne en feu – des chèvres y pâturaient.
wpid-d5c62071a25ca7cde20ee409c5d4ec4f-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
4. Les trainées dus au trafic aérien au-dessus de Londres.
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5. Un camion immense livre une cargaison de sable pétrolifère.
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6. Un simple fermier ne peut plus supporter l’odeur putride du Fleuve Jaune en Mongolie-intérieure.
wpid-30950808668d9c4079b395e71400849e-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
7. Une usine d’incinération des déchets au Bangladesh.
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8. Un incendie de forêt ravage le Colorado -une conséquence directe du changement climatique.
wpid-9a656c5f10b7742ae109fb2d6f305406-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
9. Les cicatrices de l’exploitation des sables pétrolifères dans la province canadienne d’Alberta.
wpid-b50311d56e0e90840ae69e97137f2688-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
10. Le spectacle nocturne quotidien de Los Angeles -la demande d’énergie est incalculable.
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11. Dans l’Oregon, cette forêt millénaire tombe victime des tronçonneuses pour construire un barrage.
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12. La zone entourant Almeria en Espagne est truffée de serres aussi loin que l’on puisse voir.
wpid-f808f468eee4fa0de30243e0376edc25-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
13. Des braconniers posent avec la fourrure d’un tigre sibérien.
wpid-cf55d33292cd615401dbd8ca86fa8d90-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
14. La mine Mir en Russie, la plus grande mine de diamants au monde.
wpid-5dedabf52903c79f7ffbcaf00eedbdd1-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
15. Un albatros mort illustre ce qui se passe quand on jette ses ordures n’importe où.
wpid-2b792e9bc7b2d2dfee1c5fb3aab8c503-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
16. Une autre mégalopole : une vue aérienne de New Delhi (plus de 22 millions d’habitants).
wpid-9d7ca98534f0aa5c804dac3dd44cc566-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
17. Un paradis presque perdu : les Maldives, destination populaire qui risque d’être submergée.
wpid-3663fa42f74a2ba84ed6eb60b3741ced-2016-02-20-21-25.jpgImgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow
18. Le début du “Vendredi Noir” dans un magasin d’électronique à Boise, Idaho.
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19. Des tonnes d’appareils électroniques, qui finissent dans des pays du tiers monde où ils sont décapés pour leurs métaux précieux.
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20. Le drame de la forêt vierge se répète ici au Canada.
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21. Une décharge de pneus dans le désert du Nevada.
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22. Pendant que le monde était fixé sur Fukushima, une centrale électrique brûlait à quelques kilomètres. Ils n’ont pas réussi à éteindre le feu.
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23. Cet ours polaire est mort de famine au Svalbard en Norvège. La fonte des glaces leur prive de leur habitat naturel.
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24. Jusqu’à la dernière goutte : ce champ pétrolifère en Californie illustre la surexploitation impitoyable de l’homme.
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25. Une chute d’eau sur une banquise.
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26. Une centrale au lignite contamine l’air avec ses émissions polluantes.
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27. Le surfeur indonésien Dede Surinya surfe sur une vague d’ordures à Java en Indonésie.
Imgur/WhoHasSmeltRainbow 
“Quand le dernier arbre aura été abattu, la dernière rivière empoisonnée et le dernier poisson péché, alors l’ homme s’apercevra que l’argent ne se mange pas.”
Ce vieux proverbe Cree devient une réalité de plus en plus brutale. Même aujourd’hui, beaucoup de personnes ne sont pas conscientes ou n’acceptent pas les conséquences de notre style de vie. Partagez donc ces images évocatrices.

Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) really so bad for us & the environment?

http://earthtalk.org/are-genetically-modified-organisms-really-so-bad-for-us-the-environment/

Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) really so bad for us & the environment?

Dear EarthTalk: Are genetically modified organisms (GMOs) really so bad for us and the environment, and given their prevalence in our food supply already, how can I avoid them?

—Dianne Mercurio, Richmond, VA

Unless you only buy foods that are certified organic or marked as “GMO-free,” odds are that a great deal of the food you eat contains genetically modified organisms (GMOs). But are you risking your health and damaging the environment by eating GMOs? Not according to Monsanto, the agricultural biotechnology company that is a leading producer of GM seed. Monsanto contends that GMOs are safe to eat and that seeds with GM traits have been tested more than any other crops in the history of agriculture—with no credible evidence of harm to humans or animals.

The company also points to studies that have positively assessed the safety of GMOs, including the 2010 European Commission report summarizing the results of 50 research projects addressing the safety of GMOs for the environment as well as for animal and human health. In announcing the report, the Commission stated that “there is, as of today, no scientific evidence associating GMOs with higher risks for the environment or for food and feed safety than conventional plants.”

Non-GMO Project
Since the U.S. does not require food producers to label products containing genetically-modified organisms, the non-profit Non-GMO Project has taken matters into its own hands and released its own certification label for the industry.

Of course, not everyone agrees. According to the non-profit Non-GMO Project, genetically modified crops and food items can contaminate conventional crops and foods through cross-pollination and/or contamination. Also, since many GM crops are designed to be immune to herbicides and pesticides, farmers have increased their use of various weed and bug killing chemicals to keep competition for their cash crops at bay. The resulting overuse of these chemicals has led to a rapid evolution of “super weeds” and “super bugs” that can quickly take over unmaintained or wild lands.

Given the prevalence of GMOs in our food supply already, the non-profit Just Label It believes labeling everything that contains GMOs would be a start so at least consumers can choose on their own what they put in their bodies. Some 64 countries around the world—including China, Japan, Australia, Brazil, Russia and 28 nations in the European Union—currently require labeling on foods created with GMOs. Just Label It is one of many activist voices calling on the United States to follow suit. The group has created an online petition so everyday Americans can let the U.S. Food & Drug Administration (FDA) know that they have the right to know what’s in their food, especially when it comes to GMOs.

But until we have federal rules in place requiring labeling, concerned consumers will have to take matters into their own hands when it comes to ferreting out the GMO content of what they eat. Luckily the Non-GMO Project is helping make it easier by offering verified products the opportunity to display its “Non-GMO” symbol on their labels. Currently the group has verified some 35,000 food products across 1,900 different brands commonly available on U.S. store shelves as GMO-free, representing annual sales topping $13.5 billion. Meanwhile, Whole Foods has stepped up its support of GMO labeling by instituting a new policy of “full GMO transparency” in all of its North American stores by 2018.

Beyond just labeling, though, Whole Foods is also working with many of its suppliers to transition to ingredients from non-GMO sources altogether. Activists hope that this leadership will trickle down to mainstream grocers as well.

Why English Majors are the Hot New Hires | OPEN Forum

After years of emphasis being put on math and engineering degrees, here’s why English majors may be in high demand.
JULY 11, 2013
Years ago while interviewing an English major, I mentioned that—for many reasons—I liked hiring individuals who have a degree in the humanities. When I finished speaking, I noticed that the applicant was slightly choked up. He said, « You are the only person who has made me feel good about my degree. » It’s not uncommon for English majors—or anyone majoring in the humanities for that matter—to get a bad rap. Even Marc Andreessen, founder of Netscape, not too long ago said that people should get math-oriented degrees; otherwise, they will end up working in shoe stores.
We place a great value on a STEM education (degrees in science, technology, engineering and mathematics). But are the tables turning? Are hiring managers beginning to see the value that a liberal arts education—and an English major in particular—brings to the workplace? Recently, some high-profile businesspeople came out in favor of hiring English majors. Bestselling author and small-business expert Steve Strauss, for example, has admitted that « English majors are my employee of choice. » And Bracken Darrell, CEO of Logitech, had this to say: « When I look at where our business is going, I think, boy, you do need to have a good technical understanding somewhere in there, to be relevant. But you’re really differentiated if you understand humanities. »
The Popularity of English Majors
Employers are looking to hire English majors because these applicants bring a set of skills that businesses need:
Communication skills: In a recent Job Outlook Survey, employers rated the « ability to verbally communicate with persons inside and outside the organization” as the most important candidate skill. Communication is at the heart of any business. Everything that happens in an organization requires communication. This is one of the areas in which English majors excel: They have learned to speak well; they are well-read and have an extensive vocabulary; they spend years learning how to present a thesis coherently, and how to construct an argument; and they are trained to debate and defend their point of view logically. Bringing an English major to the fold is a much needed salve for organizations today, where poor communication skills are the norm rather than the exception.
Writing skills: A Metlife survey found that 97 percent of business executives rate writing skills as very important. English majors—perhaps more than any other major—are trained to write well. A major part of what business owners do to gain clients has to do with writing, whether it’s writing an advertisement or a marketing brochure, a good sales letter or an email sales campaign. Businesses also need people who can create powerful content for the company blog, develop a strong social media presence and craft a compelling description of products and services for the company website. Even companies that conduct their sales on the phone or use telemarketers need to start with a good script. The ROI of writing is invaluable for any business.
Researching skills: All business owners need to stay current on changes and developments in their field. They also need to have absolute accuracy in any communications with clients. Having someone on staff who excels in conducting research is a very viable asset. English majors are drilled in conducting in-depth research.
Critical thinking skills: The ability to analyze an issue and question assumptions applies to all kinds of information in a business setting. English majors are taught to deconstruct and analyze a problem, and package their conclusion so others can understand their line of thought. These are highly transferable skills that are vital for the success of a business.
Empathy: More and more, businesses are recognizing the importance of empathy in the workplace. In The ‘Soft Skill’ That Pays $100,000+, author George Anders discovered over 1,000 listings for highly paid jobs where employers list empathy as a necessary qualification. And these were not just jobs in traditionally compassionate sectors, such as health care and nonprofits; they included companies in technology, finance, consulting and aerospace, to name a few. Think Microsoft, Dell, Raytheon, Symantec, Pfizer and McKinsey.
There are numerous studies that correlate empathy with increased sales, with the best performing managers of product development teams and with greater efficiency in an increasingly diverse workforce. Empathy is indeed the oil that keeps relationships running smoothly. Dan Pink, in A Whole Mind: Why Right Brainers Will Rule The Future, lists six areas that are vital for success in the new economy market—one of these is empathy. As he puts it, you can’t outsource empathy, or automate it. You need to have empathic people in your organization. 
How does this relate to English majors? A University of Toronto study on the effects of literature on empathy shows that those who read fiction frequently have higher levels of cognitive empathy; i.e., the ability to understand how another person feels. Keith Oatley, one of the researchers, said the reason fiction improves empathy is because it helps us to « understand characters’ actions from their interior point of view, by entering into their situations and minds, rather than the more exterior view of them that we usually have. » This improves interpersonal understanding and enhances relationships with customers and business associates. When you hire an English major, you’re likely hiring someone who brings cognitive empathy to the table.
The Beginning of a Trend
So is a wider range of employers recognizing the value of a liberal arts education? « There is a pattern, » says Dr. Jane Robbins of the University of Arizona, « of employers asking for more liberal-arts training for all kinds of professions—engineering, medicine, the law, and certainly management. » She adds, « Many people may not know that philosophy and English, not just biology, are common undergraduate majors for physicians. »  
David Boyes, CEO of Sine Nomine, a technology consulting company, says, “We don’t need mono-focused people. We need well-rounded people.” His company puts all new hires through a one-year training program that covers the basics—like how to write an effective business document—and includes some philosophy and history.
The Association of American Colleges and Universities conducted a recent survey of what employers want from new hires. Its survey report, It Takes More Than a Major: Employer Priorities for College Learning and Student Success, shows that more than half of business executives want college graduates to have not only field-specific knowledge and skills, but a broad range of skills and knowledge. They place less value on the undergraduate major and more on a capacity to think critically, communicate clearly and solve complex problems. In an interview, Debra Humphreys, vice president at The AACU, said that the economic downturn has “put a premium on college graduates who are really multifaceted … people who have both broad knowledge and skills, as well as field-specific skills.” According to Humphreys, this concern has intensified over the years.
What Does This Trend Mean for You?
The trend of employers looking for both field-specific skills and broad skills indicates that employees who combine a liberal arts major—especially an English major—with another major degree, such as business, science or technology, will have a competitive advantage. If businesses continue to look for  and hire such individuals, they will no doubt have a positive impact on the workplace by creating more diversity in an organization.
All companies can benefit from having a mix of left-brained and right-brained individuals on the team. Take IDEO, one of the most innovative companies in the world: One of the components for innovation at IDEO is having extremely diversified teams solve problems that are traditionally handled by monolithic groups, such as just engineers or just designers. Instead, IDEO‘s innovation teams include 10 different types. One of these is The Caregiver, who uses empathy to understand each individual customer and create a relationship; another is The Storyteller, who captures the imagination with compelling narratives in whatever medium best fits the message: video, animation, even comic strips.
As a business owner, you could gain an edge in the global marketplace and be better positioned for success with such multifaceted individuals in your camp. Have you hired an English major yet?
Read more articles on hiring.
Bruna Martinuzzi is the founder of Clarion Enterprises Ltd., and the author of two books: Presenting with Credibility: Practical Tools and Techniques for Effective Presentations and The Leader as a Mensch: Become the Kind of Person Others Want to Follow.

Why English Majors are the Hot New Hires | OPEN Forum
https://www.openforum.com/articles/why-english-majors-are-the-hot-new-hires/?fb_action_ids=10151776434776260&fb_action_types=og.likes&fb_source=other_multiline&action_object_map=%5B490877267659584%5D&action_type_map=%5B%22og.likes%22%5D&action_ref_map=%5B%5D

Fitnah Campaign

End sex segregation at UK Universities
 
 
24 November 2013
 
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Universities UK (UUK) has issued guidance on external speakers saying that the segregation of the sexes at universities is not discriminatory as long as “both men and women are being treated equally, as they are both being segregated in the same way.” The guidance has been supported by the National Union of Students.
 
UUK add that universities should bear in mind that “concerns to accommodate the wishes or beliefs of those opposed to segregation should not result in a religious group being prevented from having a debate in accordance with its belief system” and that if “imposing an unsegregated seating area in addition to the segregated areas contravenes the genuinely-held religious beliefs of the group hosting the event, or those of the speaker, the institution should be mindful to ensure that the freedom of speech of the religious group or speaker is not curtailed unlawfully.”
 
We, the undersigned, condemn the endorsement of gender apartheid by Universities UK. Any form of segregation, whether by race, sex or otherwise is discriminatory. Separate is never equal and segregation is never applied to those who are considered equal. By justifying segregation, Universities UK sides with Islamist values at the expense of the many Muslims and others who oppose sex apartheid and demand equality between women and men.
 
The guidance must be immediately rescinded and sex segregation at universities must come to an end.
 
Join initial list of signatories below by signing the petition here.
 
Initial List of Signatories:
 
A C Grayling, Philosopher
Abhishek N. Phadnis, President, London School of Economics Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society
Anissa Helie, Academic
Charlie Klendjian, Secretary of Lawyers’ Secular Society
Chris Moos, Secretary, London School of Economics Atheist, Secularist and Humanist Society
Deborah Hyde, Editor of Skeptic magazine
Deeyah Khan, Film Director and Music Producer
Dilip Simeon, Chairperson of the Aman Trust
Elham Manea, Author
Faisal Gazi, Writer and Blogger
Fatou Sow, International Coordinator of Women Living Under Muslim Laws
Gita Sahgal, Director, Centre for Secular Space
Harsh Kapoor, South Asia Citizen’s Web
Helen Palmer, Chair of London Humanists
Kate Smurthwaite, Comedian and Activist
Marieme Helie Lucas, Coordinator, Secularism is a Women’s Issue
Maryam Namazie, Spokesperson for One Law for All and Fitnah
Mina Ahadi, International Committee against Stoning
Nadia El Fani, Tunisian Filmmaker
Nahla Mahmoud, Spokesperson of Council of Ex-Muslims of Britain
Ophelia Benson, Writer
Pavan Dhaliwal, Head of Public Affairs of the British Humanist Association
Peter Tatchell, Director of Peter Tatchell Foundation
Polly Toynbee, Journalist
Pragna Patel, Director of Southall Black Sisters
Raheem Kassam, Director of Student Rights
Richard Dawkins, Scientist
Rohini Hensman, Social Activist
Rory Fenton, President of The National Federation of Atheist, Humanist and Secular Student Societies of the UK and ROI
Rupert Sutton, Lead Researcher of Student Rights
Safia Lebdi, Founder, “Les insoumis-es”
Salil Tripathi, Writer
Soad Baba Aissa, President, of Association pour l’ Egalité, la Mixité et la Laicité en Algérie
Terry Sanderson, President of National Secular Society
Yasmin Rehman, Women’s Rights Campaigner
 
*  There will be a protest in London on 10 December 2013, International Human Rights Day, to oppose sex segregation. You can join Facebook Events Page here.
 
* Teams of Sex Apartheid Busters are being organised to break segregation wherever it is instituted. To join email maryamnamazie@gmail.com

Fitnah Campaign
http://fitnah.org/fitnah_campaign_english/uk_sex_segregation.html

Tunisie : témoignage et billet d’humeur

Tunisie : témoignage et billet d’humeur
Dimanche 24 novembre 2013

Par Rabâa Ben Achour-Abdelkéfi
Agrégée et docteur en Lettres et Civilisation françaises, a enseigné à l’université de Tunis.
Permalien vers cet article

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Afficher cet article dans son contexte d’origine (source : http://www.lapresse.tn/1811201…)

« Que nos erreurs ne fassent point nos calamités » (titre original de l’article)
Traité sur la tolérance, Chapitre XXIII, « Prière à Dieu »

On parle beaucoup en Tunisie. Les débats politiques rythment  nos journées, polluent nos rêves et perturbent notre appréciation du temps comme de l’espace. La valse des mots nous entraine dans sa folle cadence ;  nous sommes comme anesthésiés, réduits à n’être plus que les infatigables récepteurs de discours sans cesse ressassés. Un désir compulsif d’en savoir toujours plus nous fige devant nos écrans. Depuis trois ans, nous sommes tenus en haleine par le feuilleton politique, par des coups de théâtre savamment  construits et par l’attente d’un improbable dénouement.
Le temps passe et nous emporte dans ses circonvolutions, nous empêchant de marquer la pause qui nous permettra de nous dresser contre la mort programmée de l’institution scolaire républicaine et l’embrigadement des enfants. Dans les écoles coraniques rénovées, on leur enseigne la haine de l’autre et le mépris des femmes, le culte de la virilité et de la violence, le rejet de l’histoire nationale, la honte d’être libres et les péchés capitaux: aimer, rire, créer, penser et douter.
Tandis que les associations caritatives et les écoles religieuses et bon nombre de prédicateurs, ministres et  cadres de l’administration poursuivent insidieusement mais sûrement leur travail d’endoctrinement et de remodelage de la société tunisienne, nous  observons, ironiques mais sourds à notre faiblesse, la chevauchée fantastique de l’intégrisme religieux, heureux de relever ses dérapages, l’ignorance et l’incompétence de ses représentants, l’inélégance de ses militants ; soucieux de contrecarrer son avancée par nos marches massives, nos cris de révolte, nos  slogans, nos pancartes, sûrs de nous-mêmes, de notre histoire et  de nos institutions, de nos jeunes et de nos femmes.
« Les femmes sauveront le pays », répète-t-on à l’envi. Oui, sans doute, mais il est possible d’ajouter que les femmes  ont aussi le pouvoir d’anéantir le pays quand, renonçant à leurs droits, à leur liberté et leur dignité, elles ne sont plus qu’un corps voilé dont on use et abuse. Les islamistes le savent. Leurs discours misogynes et parfois obscènes révèlent que l’enjeu est de taille. Cacher les femmes, c’est tenir un pays sous tutelle.
Les Nahdhaouis ne nous craignent pas : ni les grandes manifestations populaires dans la capitale ou à l’intérieur du pays, ni la répression de la marche du 9 avril 2012, ni l’attaque  de l’ambassade des USA, en septembre 2012, ni la violente répression des jeunes contestataires de Siliana, en novembre 2012, ni les assassinats de Lotfi Nagdh, de Chokri Bélaïd, de Mohamed Brahmi, de Mohamed El-Mufti, des soldats au mont Châambi n’ont suffi à amoindrir leur arrogance de vainqueurs du scrutin  du 23 octobre 2012.
Leur surprenante résistance tient tant à leur psychologie qu’à l’assise sociale et aux liens politiques qu’ils se sont appliqués à constituer. Convaincus qu’ils sont les élus de Dieu et que leur endurance les conduira tôt ou tard vers la gloire terrestre et éternelle, ils ne craignent ni la souffrance, ni les brimades. Que peut-il leur arriver qu’ils n’aient déjà vécu ? Ne sont-ils pas déjà morts et ressuscités ?
Les Nahdhaouis nous échappent. Comment pourrions-nous les comprendre et comment pourraient-ils nous comprendre quand notre appréciation de l’espace et du temps diffère. Si leur idéologie les projettent dans un passé révolu, elle les conduit aussi à l’étendre, à en effacer les contours temporels et à l’universaliser  en adoptant les moyens que leur offrent la science et les progrès techniques et technologiques.  Qu’est la Tunisie pour eux ? Rien. C’’est juste une petite parcelle d’un monde corrompu qui,  tout comme les autres pays du monde, doit mourir pour ressusciter débarrassée des mécréants et des impies, artistes, intellectuels, journalistes et touristes.
Le terrorisme, la crise économique, la détérioration des villes ne les inquiètent pas, la culture de la mort constitue au contraire, à leur sens, les conditions nécessaires à l’émergence d’un homme nouveau. Le dépérissement du pays n’est pas accidentel, il est sciemment programmé et s’inscrit dans  le projet islamiste international qui comporte deux temps : La destruction systématique et, simultanément, la formation des jeunes, puis la construction du califat.
Que leur importe que le pays tout entier croule sous les ordures, que les trottoirs de la ville soient squattés  par les marchands ambulants et les cafetiers, que l’irrespect des lois soit devenu une règle de conduite, que l’absentéisme des fonctionnaires soit considéré comme un droit, que les malades agressent les médecins et les élèves les professeurs, que le vol et la corruption soient érigés en système, que leur importe en effet la misère matérielle, morale, la mort du civisme et de la citoyenneté, l’essentiel n’est-il pas pour eux de parvenir à créer l’anarchie, à détruire les repères sociaux et à contraindre un peuple enfin fragilisé et désabusé à accepter la théocratie, ses cadres et son idéologie.
Cette politique de mise à mort de la Tunisie s’accompagne d’un travail visant à inculquer aux jeunes l’idée qu’ils sont élus par Dieu pour un destin exceptionnel et que leur vie, ici-bas, n’est qu’une étape obligée dans le parcours initiatique qui doit les conduire au paradis. Missionnaires de Dieu, ils sont investis du rôle de réformer les hommes, en particulier les mauvais musulmans, par la prédication ou par la force. C’est ainsi que de jeunes tunisiens, garçons et filles, adolescents pour la plupart, ont choisi respectivement de sacrifier leur corps, dans le djihad ou dans le commerce du sexe.

Notre pays agonise, mettons fin à notre logorrhée, que nous appelons abusivement liberté d’expression, et veillons à sauver nos enfants, nos villes et nos campagnes, nos  institutions scolaires et notre administration en cessant de nous entredéchirer et de nous méfier les uns des autres.
L’heure n’est plus à la guerre des chefs. Les discordes de nos responsables politiques démocrates d’autant plus stériles   qu’elles contribuent à la démobilisation populaire, au désenchantement et à la morosité des Tunisiens et qu’elle sert, par conséquent, le parti islamiste et ses alliés.
Nos divergences ont offert le pouvoir aux Nahdhaouis, le 23  octobre 2011 ; nos dissensions ne feront que leur donner la force et la vigueur qui leur permettra achever le travail d’anéantissement de notre pays et de poser les fondements du califat dont ils rêvent.

Le moment le plus dangereux pour l’humanité depuis la crise des missiles cubains

Le moment le plus dangereux pour l’humanité depuis la crise des missiles cubains
07 OCTOBRE 2013 |  PAR MILOO

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La piscine de combustibles usés de l’unité n°4

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Note: Ne pas oublier de lire les commentaires qui apportent des précisions sur la véracité de cet article.
Nous sommes actuellement à deux mois du moment le plus dangereux peut-être pour l’humanité depuis la crise des missiles cubains.
Il n’y a aucune excuse à ne pas agir. Toutes les ressources que notre espèce peut rassembler doivent se focaliser sur la piscine de l’unité 4 de Fukushima.
Le propriétaire de Fukushima, Tokyo Electric (Tepco), dit que d’ici 60 jours va commencer une tentative pour enlever plus de 1300 barres de combustible usagé d’une piscine en très mauvais état perchée à 30 mètres du sol. La piscine repose sur un édifice sévèrement endommagé qui penche, s’enfonce et qui pourrait facilement s’effondrer avec un autre séisme, si ce n’est pas de lui-même.
 
Pour un regroupement international visant à donner les moyens à Tepco et au Japon de résoudre cette crise, vous pouvez signer la pétition ici : http://www.nukefree.org/crisis-fukushima-4-petition-un-us-global-response
 
Les quelques 400 tonnes de combustible de cette piscine pourraient libérer 15.000 fois plus de radiations qu’Hiroshima.
Une chose est sûre concernant cette crise, c’est que Tepco n’a les ressources ni scientifiques, ni techniques, ni financières pour la gérer. Pas plus que le gouvernement. La situation demande un effort mondial coordonné des meilleurs scientifiques et ingénieurs que notre espèce peut rassembler.
Pourquoi est-ce aussi sérieux ?
Nous savons déjà que des milliers de tonnes d’eau largement contaminée s’écoulent sur le site de Fukushima, entraînant un brouet diabolique d’isotopes à longue vie vers le Pacifique. Des thons irradiés par des retombées imputables à Fukushima ont déjà été pêchés au large de la Californie.
Nous pouvons nous attendre à bien pire.
Tepco continue à déverser toujours plus d’eau sur un site proche de trois cœurs de réacteur en fusion qu’il doit continuer à refroidir coûte que coûte. Des panaches de vapeur indiquent qu’une fission pourrait se poursuivre quelque part en souterrain. Mais personne ne sait exactement où se trouvent exactement ces coriums.
Une grande partie de cette eau irradiée se trouve maintenant dans un millier d’immenses mais fragiles réservoirs qui ont été assemblés à-la-va-vite et éparpillés autour du site. Plusieurs fuient déjà. Ils pourraient tous être fracassés par un prochain séisme, libérant des milliers de tonnes de poisons permanents dans le Pacifique.
L’eau qui coule à travers le site déstabilise aussi les structures subsistantes de Fukushima, dont celle supportant la piscine de l’unité 4.
Plus de 6000 assemblages de combustible reposent dans la piscine commune à juste 50 mètres de l’unité 4. Certains contiennent du plutonium. La piscine ne possède aucun confinement au-dessus. Elle est vulnérable à une perte de refroidissement, à l’effondrement d’un bâtiment proche, à un autre séisme, à un autre tsunami.
Au total, plus de 11.000 assemblages de combustible sont dispersés sur le site de Fukushima. Selon Robert Alvarez, expert de longue date et ancien responsable du département de l’énergie, il y a 85 fois plus de césium léthal sur le site qu’il n’y en a eu de libéré par Tchernobyl.
On continue de trouver des « points chauds » de radioactivité un peu partout au Japon. On entend parler d’une intensification des taux de problèmes thyroïdiens parmi les enfants de la région.
Dans l’immédiat, l’essentiel est que ces barres de combustible doivent sortir de la piscine de l’unité 4 dès que possible.
Juste avant le séisme et le tsunami du 11 mars 2011 qui ont détruit le site de Fukushima, le cœur de l’unité 4 avait été enlevé pour maintenance et rechargement de routine. Comme quelques deux douzaines de réacteurs aux US et d’autres biens trop nombreux dans le monde, la piscine conçue par General Electric dans laquelle repose aujourd’hui le cœur se trouve à 30 mètres en l’air.
On doit toutefois garder immergé le combustible usagé. C’est son revêtement, un alliage de zirconium, qui s’enflammerait spontanément s’il était exposé à l’air. Longtemps utilisé dans les ampoules de flash des appareils photos, le zirconium brûle avec une flamme chaude extrêmement vive.
Toute barre exposée émet suffisamment de radiations pour tuer en quelques minutes quiconque se trouve à côté. Un embrasement pourrait obliger tout le personnel à quitter le site et rendrait inopérable la machinerie électronique.
Selon Arnie Gundersen, ingénieur depuis 40 ans dans l’industrie nucléaire pour laquelle il fabriquait autrefois des barres de combustible, celles du cœur de l’unité 4 sont inclinées, endommagées et fragilisées au point de s’effriter. Les caméras ont montré d’inquiétantes quantités de débris dans la piscine, qui est elle-même endommagée. [Dans une interview, Arnie disait : « Ils ont admis que tout le bore s’était désintégré. Cela peut enclencher une réaction en chaîne nucléaire si les barres arrivent en contact les unes des autres dans la piscine. »]
Les risques techniques et scientifiques pour le vidage de la piscine de l’unité 4 sont spécifiques et redoutables, dit Gundersen. Mais ce doit être fait avec 100 % de perfection.
Que la tentative échoue, les barres pourraient se retrouver exposées à l’air et prendre feu, dégageant d’horribles quantités de radiations dans l’atmosphère. La piscine pourrait même s’écraser au sol, déversant les barres dans un tas qui pourrait entrer en fission et peut-être exploser. Le nuage radioactif qui en résulterait menacerait la santé et la sécurité de nous tous.
La première retombée de Tchernobyl en 1986 a atteint la Californie en dix jours. Fukushima en 2011 est arrivé en moins d’une semaine. Un nouvel incendie de l’unité 4 déverserait un flot continu de poisons mortels radioactifs pendant des siècles.
L’ancien ambassadeur Mitsuhei Murata dit que des rejets à grande échelle de Fukushima « détruiraient l’environnement mondial et notre civilisation. Ce n’est pas compliqué, ça dépasse tout débat sur les centrales nucléaires. C’est un problème de survie humaine. »
Ni Tokyo Electric, ni le gouvernement du Japon ne peuvent faire cela tout seuls. Il n’y a aucune excuse au déploiement concerté d’une équipe coordonnée des meilleurs scientifiques et ingénieurs de la planète.
Nous avons tout au plus deux mois pour agir.
Pour le moment, nous envoyons une pétition aux Nations-Unies et au président Obama pour mobiliser la communauté mondiale scientifique et technique afin qu’elle prenne en charge Fukushima et le travail de la mise en sécurité de ces barres de combustible.
Vous pouvez signer la pétition à : http://www.nukefree.org/crisis-fukushima-4-petition-un-us-global-response
Si vous avez une meilleure idée, donnez-y une suite s’il vous plaît. Mais faites quelque chose et faites-le maintenant.
Partagez cet article le plus largement possible et faites tourner la pétition. 
L’heure tourne.
 
http://lesmoutonsenrages.fr/2013/08/19/le-prochain-enlevement-du-combustible-du-reacteur-4-de-fukushima/
http://www.nukefree.org/editorsblog
http://www.globalresearch.ca/humankinds-most-dangerous-moment-fukushima-fuel-pool-at-unit-4/5350779
 La roadmap de tepco (http://www.tepco.co.jp/en/nu/fukushima-np/roadmap/images/t120730_03-e.pdf):
 
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TOUS LES COMMENTAIRES
10/10/2013, 17:37 | PAR MICHEL DE PRACONTAL
L’accident de Fukushima, le plus grave survenu dans l’industrie nucléaire depuis celui de Tchernobyl, a été abondamment traité par Mediapart, avec un souci constant de rapporter une information aussi précise et exacte que possible. Il n’est pas question ici de minimiser les conséquences de Fukushima. Mais le billet ci-dessus est truffé d’erreurs, d’inexactitudes, d’approximations, d’extrapolations et d’exagérations qui donnent de la situation une image confuse et trompeuse. Or celle-ci est suffisamment préoccupante en elle-même pour qu’il ne soit utile ni de la caricaturer, ni de la déformer. Quelques points importants doivent être soulignés en priorité :
• Le problème de la piscine du réacteur n°4 n’a rien de nouveau. Il a été considéré dès le début de l’accident, par Tepco comme par l’autorité nucléaire japonaise, comme l’un des principaux points à traiter. C’est pourquoi l’évacuation des combustibles usés contenus dans cette piscine est considérée comme prioritaire.
• L’opération consistant à retirer ces combustibles pour les placer dans un lieu plus sûr est assurément complexe et demande de nombreux préparatifs. Cette opération est censée débuter en novembre, si toutefois Tepco réussit à respecter sa feuille de route, ce qui n’est pas certain.
• Depuis 2011, des informations alarmantes concernant cette piscine ont circulé. Elles ont été principalement relayées par un certain Arnie Gundersen, présenté dans le billet ci-dessus comme un ingénieur du nucléaire ayant 40 ans d’expérience, ce qui ne correspond pas à la réalité. Gundersen n’a pas travaillé dans l’industrie nucléaire depuis 1990 et son expérience des réacteurs nucléaires se limite à s’être occupé d’un réacteur de recherche au Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute. Il n’est donc pas un expert très qualifié de la production d’électricité nucléaire. Les prédictions dramatiques de Gundersen ne se sont pas réalisées jusqu’ici, et le combustible de la piscine n°4 est moins actif qu’il y a deux ans.
• L’affirmation selon laquelle les gaines de zirconium qui protègent les barres de combustible s’enflammeraient spontanément si elles étaient exposées à l’air libre est fantaisiste. Le zirconium est inflammable à l’état de poudre mais l’alliage qui constitue les gaines de combustibles est stable et résiste à la corrosion, c’est pour cela qu’il a été choisi. L’auteur du billet semble confondre le zirconium et le sodium. 
• L’idée que les combustibles de la piscine n°4 pourraient déclencher une catastrophe suffisante pour menacer la survie de l’humanité est un pur non-sens. Même si ces combustibles libéraient une quantité importante de radioactivité dans l’environnement, elle serait de toute façon inférieure à celle qui a déjà été relâchée pendant les premiers jours et semaines de l’accident.
• Pour autant, la situation n’est assurément pas sous contrôle à Fukushima, contrairement à ce qu’a affirmé le premier ministre japonais, Shinzo Abe. Le problème actuellement le plus préoccupant est l’accumulation de centaines de milliers de tonnes d’eau radioactive dans des réservoirs dont l’étanchéité et la résistance n’est pas garantie. Ce problème n’est pas résolu et occupe beaucoup Tepco depuis plusieurs mois, de sorte que le retrait des éléments combustibles de la piscine n°4 pourrait être retardé.
En résumé, Fukushima est une crise grave, non résolue, qui justifie largement l’arrêt du nucléaire au Japon. Mais ce n’est ni la fin du monde, ni celle de l’humanité, ni le moment le plus dangereux depuis la crise de Cuba, et les extrapolations apocalyptiques ne contribuent certainement pas à éclairer le débat sur le nucléaire.   
Les lecteurs intéressés sont invités à se reporter aux articles en lien ci-dessous : http://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/230813/fukushima-cette-crise-que-le-monde-voudrait-oublier
http://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/160712/fukushima-le-rapport-qui-change-tout
http://www.mediapart.fr/journal/international/060611/fukushima-lagence-japonaise-de-surete-nucleaire-revise-les-retombees-la
 

12/10/2013, 12:29 | PAR MILOO EN RÉPONSE AU COMMENTAIRE DE MICHEL DE PRACONTAL LE 10/10/2013 À 17:37
Merci de toutes vos précisions. Je ne faisait que relayer cet article et il semble effectivement qu’il soit trop alarmiste. Il n’empêche que la pétition sera utile car il semble bien que Tepco et le gouvernement Japonais ne soient pas en mesure de contrôler cette crise de façon satisfaisante.
Il était peut être nécéssaire d’alerter l’opinion en tapant fort? Mais vous avez raison que crier au loup avec de mauvais argument déssert la cause anti nucléaire plutot que de la servir.

11/10/2013, 16:58 | PAR LOISCARIE
Ce n’est pas grand chose, mais si vous souhaitez avoir plus de signatures pour cette pétition, placez-là en haut de votre article avec un gros bouton « Signer la pétition ».

13/10/2013, 12:58 | PAR STEPHANG
Merci beaucoup Michel de Précontal pour vos précisions éclairées … à la fin de l’article, j’étais persuadé que nous allions tous ensemble connaître la fin de l’Histoire.
Bazar,  quel stress ! … je ne suis pas sûr que nous ayons besoin de cela.
Y-a-t-il quelques intérêts derrière tout cela ? lesquels ?
Est-ce que le journal doit garder de tels post de blog ?
D’ailleurs vous devriez séparer graphiquement la maquette du site entre journal et blogs. C’est parfois confus.

2013 July 10 – EPA’s abandoned Wyoming fracking study one retreat of many — High Country News

EPA’s abandoned Wyoming fracking study one retreat of many

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When the federal Environmental Protection Agency abruptly retreated on its multimillion-dollar investigation into water contamination in a central Wyoming natural gas field last month, it shocked environmentalists and energy industry supporters alike.
In 2011, the agency had issued a blockbuster draft report saying that the controversial practice of fracking was to blame for the pollution of an aquifer deep below the town of Pavillion, Wyo. – the first time such a claim had been based on a scientific analysis.
The study drew heated criticism over its methodology and awaited a peer review that promised to settle the dispute. Now the EPA will instead hand the study over to the state of Wyoming, whose research will be funded by EnCana, the very drilling company whose wells may have caused the contamination.
Industry advocates say the EPA’s turnabout reflects an overdue recognition that it had over-reached on fracking and that its science was critically flawed.
But environmentalists see an agency that is systematically disengaging from any research that could be perceived as questioning the safety of fracking or oil drilling, even as President Obama lays out a plan to combat climate change that rests heavily on the use of natural gas.
Over the past 15 months, they point out, the EPA has:
·      Closed an investigation into groundwater pollution in Dimock, Pa., saying the level of contamination was below federal safety triggers.
·      Abandoned its claim that a driller in Parker County, Texas, was responsible for methane gas bubbling up in residents’ faucets, even though a geologist hired by the agency confirmed this finding.
·      Sharply revised downward a 2010 estimate showing that leaking gas from wells and pipelines was contributing to climate change, crediting better pollution controls by the drilling industry even as other reports indicate the leaks may be larger than previously thought.
·      Failed to enforce a statutory ban on using diesel fuel in fracking.
« We’re seeing a pattern that is of great concern, » said Amy Mall, a senior policy analyst for the Natural Resources Defense Council in Washington, D.C. « They need to make sure that scientific investigations are thorough enough to ensure that the public is getting a full scientific explanation. »
The EPA says that the string of decisions is not related, and the Pavillion matter will be resolved more quickly by state officials. The agency has maintained publicly that it remains committed to an ongoing national study of hydraulic fracturing, which it says will draw the definitive line on fracking’s risks to water.
In private conversations, however, high-ranking agency officials acknowledge that fierce pressure from the drilling industry and its powerful allies on Capitol Hill – as well as financial constraints and a delicate policy balance sought by the White House — is squelching their ability to scrutinize not only the effects of oil and gas drilling, but other environmental protections as well.
Last year, the agency’s budget was sliced 17 percent, to below 1998 levels. Sequestration forced further cuts, making research initiatives like the one in Pavillion harder to fund.
One reflection of the intense political spotlight on the agency: In May, Senate Republicans boycotted a vote on President Obama’s nominee to head the EPA, Gina McCarthy, after asking her to answer more than 1,000 questions on regulatory and policy concerns, including energy.
The Pavillion study touched a particular nerve for Sen. James Inhofe, R-Okla., the former ranking member of the Senate Environment and Public Works committee.
According to correspondence obtained under the Freedom of Information Act, Inhofe demanded repeated briefings from EPA officials on fracking initiatives and barraged the agency with questions on its expenditures in Pavillion, down to how many dollars it paid a lab to check water samples for a particular contaminant.
He also wrote a letter to the EPA’s top administrator calling a draft report that concluded fracking likely helped pollute Pavillion’s drinking water « unsubstantiated » and pillorying it as part of an « Administration-wide effort to hinder and unnecessarily regulate hydraulic fracturing on the federal level. » He called for the EPA’s inspector general to open an investigation into the agency’s actions related to fracking.
When the EPA announced it would end its research in Pavillion, Inhofe — whose office did not respond to questions from ProPublica — was quick to applaud.
« EPA thought it had a rock solid case linking groundwater contamination to hydraulic fracturing in Pavillion, WY, but we knew all along that the science was not there, » Inhofe said in a press release issued the day of the announcement.
Others, however, wonder whether a gun-shy EPA is capable of answering the pressing question of whether the nation’s natural gas boom will also bring a wave of environmental harm.
« The EPA has just put a ‘kick me’ sign on it, » John Hanger, a Democratic candidate for governor in Pennsylvania and the former secretary of the state’s Department of Environmental Protection, wrote on his blog in response to the EPA news about Pavillion. « Its critics from all quarters will now oblige. »
Page 2 of 5
Before fracking became the subject of a high-stakes national debate, federal agencies appeared to be moving aggressively to study whether the drilling technique was connected to mounting complaints of water pollution and health problems near well sites nationwide.
As some states began to strengthen regulations for fracking, the federal government prepared to issue rules for how wells would be fracked on lands it directly controlled.
The EPA also launched prominent scientific studies in Texas, Wyoming and Pennsylvania, stepping into each case after residents voiced concerns that state environmental agencies had not properly examined problems.
The EPA probe in Pavillion began in 2008 with the aim of determining whether the town’s water was safe to drink. The area was first drilled in 1960 and had been the site of extensive natural gas developmentsince the 1990s. Starting at about the same time, residents had complained of physical ailments and said their drinking water — drawn from wells — was black and tasted of chemicals.
The EPA conducted four rounds of sampling, first testing the water from more than 40 homes and later drilling two deep wells to test water from layers of earth that chemicals from farming and old oil and gas waste pits were unlikely to reach.
The sampling revealed oil, methane, arsenic, and metals including copper and vanadium — as well as other compounds — in shallow water wells. It also detected a trace of an obscure compound linked to materials used in fracking, called 2-butoxyethanol phosphate (2-BEp).
The deep-well tests showed benzene, at 50 times the level that is considered safe for people, as well as phenols — another dangerous human carcinogen — acetone, toluene, naphthalene and traces of diesel fuel, which seemed to show that man-made pollutants had found their way deep into the cracks of the earth. In all, EPA detected 13 different compounds in the deep aquifer that it said were often used with hydraulic fracturing processes, including 2-Butoxyethanol, a close relation to the 2-BEp found near the surface.[1]
The agency issued a draft report in 2011 stating that while some of the pollution in the shallow water wells was likely the result of seepage from old waste pits nearby, the array of chemicals found in the deep test wells was « the result of direct mixing of hydraulic fracturing fluids with ground water in the Pavillion gas field. »
The report triggered a hailstorm of criticism not only from the drilling industry, but from state oil and gas regulators, who disagreed with the EPA’s interpretation of its data. They raised serious questions about the EPA’s methodology and the materials they used, postulating that contaminants found in deep-well samples could have been put there by the agency itself in the testing process.
In response, the EPA agreed to more testing and repeatedly extended the comment period on its study, delaying the peer review process.
Agency officials insist their data was correct, but the EPA’s decision to withdraw from Pavillion means the peer-review process won’t go forward and the findings in the draft report will never become final.
« We stand by what our data said, » an EPA spokesperson told ProPublica after the June 20 announcement, « but I do think there is a difference between data and conclusions. »
Wyoming officials say they will launch another year-long investigation to reach their own conclusions about Pavillion’s water.
Meanwhile, local residents remain suspended in a strange limbo.
While controversy has swirled around the deep well test results — and critics have hailed the agency’s retreat as an admission that it could not defend its science — the shallow well contamination and waste pits have been all but forgotten.
The Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry, the federal government’s main agency for evaluating health risk from pollution, has advised Pavillion residents not to bathe, cook with, or drink the water flowing from their taps. Some have reported worsening health conditions they suspect are related to the pollution. They are being provided temporary drinking water from the state in large cisterns.
Page 3 of 5
The EPA opened its inquiry in Dimock, Pa., after residents provided it with private water tests detecting contaminants and complained that state regulators weren’t doing enough to investigate the cause.
When an elderly woman’s water well exploded on New Year’s morning in 2009, Pennsylvania officials discovered pervasive methane contamination in the well water of 18 homes and linked it to bad casing and cementing in gas company wells. In 2010, they took a series of steps against the drilling company involved, citing it for regulatory violations, barring it from new drilling until it proved its wells would not leak and requiring it to temporarily supply water to affected homes.
But residents said state officials hadn’t investigated whether the drilling was responsible for the chemicals in their water. The EPA stepped in to find out if residents could trust the water to be safe after the drilling company stopped bringing replacement supplies.
Starting in early 2012, federal officials tested water in more than five dozen homes for pollutants, finding hazardous levels of barium, arsenic and magnesium, all compounds that can occur naturally, and minute amounts of other contaminants, including several known to cause cancer.
Still, the concentration of pollutants was not high enough to exceed safe drinking water standards in most of the homes, the EPA found (in five homes, filtering systems were installed to address concerns). Moreover, none of the contaminants – except methane — pointed clearly to drilling. The EPA ended its investigation that July.
Critics pointed to the Dimock investigation as a classic example of the EPA being overly aggressive on fracking and then being proven wrong.
Yet, as in Pavillion, the agency concluded its inquiry without following through on the essential question of whether Dimock residents face an ongoing risk from too much methane, which is not considered unsafe to drink, but can produce fumes that lead to explosions.
The EPA also never addressed whether drilling – and perhaps the pressure of fracking – had contributed to moving methane up through cracks in the earth into their water wells.
As drilling has resumed in Dimock, so have reports of ongoing methane leaks. On June 24, the National Academy of Sciences published a report by Duke University researchers that underscored a link between the methane contamination in water in Dimock and across the Marcellus shale, and the gas wells being drilled deep below.
The gas industry maintains that methane is naturally occurring and, according to a response issued by the industry group Energy In Depth after the release of the Duke research, « there’s still no evidence of hydraulic fracturing fluids migrating from depth to contaminate aquifers. »
Page 4 of 5
In opening an inquiry in Parker County, Texas, in late 2010, the EPA examined a question similar to the one it faced in Dimock: Was a driller responsible for methane gas bubbling up in residents’ water wells?
This time, though, tests conducted by a geologist hired by the agency appeared to confirm that the methane in the wells had resulted from drilling, rather than occurring naturally.
« The methane that was coming out of that well … was about as close a match as you are going to find, » said the consultant, Geoffrey Thyne, a geochemist and expert in unconventional oil and gas who has been a member of both the EPA’s Science Advisory Board for hydraulic fracturing, and a National Research Council committee to examine coalbed methane development.
The EPA issued an « imminent and substantial endangerment order » forcing Range Resources, the company it suspected of being responsible, to take immediate action to address the contamination.
But once again, the EPA’s actions ignited an explosive response from the oil and gas industry, and a sharp rebuke from Texas state officials, who insisted that their own data and analysis proved Range had done no harm.
According to the environmental news site Energy Wire, Ed Rendell, the former Governor of Pennsylvania, whose law firm lobbies on behalf of energy companies, also took up Range’s case with then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson.
Internal EPA emails used in the EnergyWire report and also obtained by ProPublica discuss Rendell’s meeting with then-EPA Administrator Lisa Jackson, though Range has denied it employed Rendell to argue on its behalf. Neither the EPA nor Rendell responded to a request for comment on the Parker County case.
In March 2012, the EPA dropped its case against Range without explanation. Its administrator in Texas at the time had been assailed for making comments that seemed to show an anti-industry bias. He subsequently lost his job. An Associated Press investigation found that the EPA abandoned its inquiry after Range threatened not to cooperate with the EPA on its other drilling-related research.
Agency critics see a lack of will, rather than a lack of evidence, in the EPA’s approach in Parker County and elsewhere.
« It would be one thing if these were isolated incidents, » said Alan Septoff, communications director for Earthworks, an environmental group opposed to fracking. « But every time the EPA has come up with something damning, somehow, something magically has occurred to have them walk it back. »
Page 5 of 5
So where does this leave the EPA’s remaining research into the effects of fracking?
The agency has joined with the Department of Energy, U.S. Geological Survey and the Department of Interior to study the environmental risks of developing unconventional fuels such as shale gas, but those involved in the collaboration say that little has happened.
That leaves the EPA’s highly anticipated national study on hydraulic fracturing.
When the EPA announced it was ending its research in Pavillion, it pointed to this study as a « major research program. »
« The agency will look to the results of this program as the basis for its scientific conclusions and recommendations on hydraulic fracturing, » it said in a statement issued in partnership with Wyoming Gov. Matt Mead.
That national study will concentrate on five case studies in Pennsylvania, Texas, North Dakota and Colorado.
It will not, however, focus on Pavillion or Parker County or Dimock.
Nor will it devote much attention to places like Sublette County, Wyo., where state and federal agencies have found both aquifer contamination and that drilling has caused dangerous levels of emissions and ozone pollution.
It will be a long time before the EPA’s national study can inform the debate over fracking. While the agency has promised a draft by late 2014, it warned last month that no one should expect to read the final version before sometime in 2016, the last full year of President Obama’s term.

Crossing the border gets deadlier

http://www.hcn.org/issues/45.11/crossing-the-border-gets-deadlier?utm_source=wcn1&utm_medium=email

 

Crossing the border gets deadlier

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Charles Bowden on The War Next Door
NEWS – From the June 24, 2013 issue
By Emily Guerin
Between October 2011 and September 2012, 463 people died in the desert after slipping across the U.S.-Mexico border – the most since 2005, when about three times as many entered the country illegally. Today, migrants are eight times more likely to die than a decade ago, according to the National Foundation for American Policy. Most used to cross near San Diego, or other border cities. But in the late 1990s, when the feds stepped up enforcement there, migrants began more dangerous treks across Arizona’s remote Sonoran Desert, where heat exhaustion killed hundreds. Now, the pattern is shifting again. More migrants are Central American and take freight trains up Mexico’s Gulf Coast, entering through south Texas. By the time they arrive, many have traveled for over a month under rugged conditions and are already weakened when they reach the desert. Increased legal avenues into the U.S. for low-skilled immigrants, such as temporary work visas, might ease the situation, but others argue tougher enforcement is the way to reduce border deaths.