Are Cloud (Servers) Melting the Arctic Sea?

September 23, 2012 at 6:03 pm Leave a comment

The NY Times has three new and very interesting articles on green issues. Try to read at least one of them this weekend while the sun is still shining and life feels good. Bad news is no excuse for pessimism.

  • The Cloud Factories: Power, Pollution, and the Internet (23 Sept 2012, Technology) reports on issues that you will never hear discussed in the Reed ETC building (or anywhere else on campus): the massive electricity needs of today’s computer technology, especially those ‘cloud’ services that let your data follow you everywhere you go. Go buy a thumb drive and use it.
  • Ending Its Summer Melt, Arctic Sea Ice Sets a New Low That Leads to Warnings (19 Sept 2012, Environment) looks at this past summer’s melting of the Arctic sea. The summer of 2007 had been the previous modern low on ice, but 2012 has set a new record. For those of you who are new to this: ice is not only essential to the integrity of the Arctic biosphere, it also reflects sunlight back into space, which keeps the planet cool, and locks up water in ice formations, which keeps sea levels down. So loss of ice is big news globally.
  • How ‘Silent Spring’ Ignited the Environmental Movement (21 Sept 2012, Magazine) takes a look back at Rachel Carson’s groundbreaking book about the effects of DDT. I read it in high school around the time of the original Earth Day. We thought we could ‘save the world’ back then. We still can. We just have to try.

Speaking of saving the only planet that humans have ever lived on, Bill McKibben, the founder of 350.org, is coming to Portland on November 8 as part of his Do The Math tour. Tickets to his public event are cheap, just $10, but only about 350 are left. Don’t miss this sure-to-be-inspiring event. (Will someone please tell Greenboard and the ES program about this?) And, if you haven’t done so yet, take a look at the Green Science blog post on Bill’s Rolling Stone article: Three Numbers Point Toward a Future Meltdown (23 July 2012).

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Entry filed under: In the News.

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