Monday, November 30, 2009
Comment: "Devin Wayne Kirby, loved by all who knew him"
11/30/09 10:09 pm
reporter: Brian Damewood
producer: Amy Foster
Hurt, VA - The Hurt community says they will not forget Devin Wayne Kirby. Those close to him say it wouldn't even be possible if they tried.
State Police say the 16-year-old died when his pickup truck flipped over on Shula Drive in Pittsylvania County around 8:30 Sunday night.
Those who knew him best say he was an athlete, an excellent student, a person of great faith, and he clearly made a big impression on them.
Faith is one of the things Kirby's friends say bound them together, and it's helping them cope with losing their friend they say had a magnetic personality.
Devin’s mother Kim Moore said, "I preached be a careful driver, drive slow, don't talk on the cell phone, watch what you're doing."
His mother rode up on the accident.
"You always think it's going to be somebody else," Moore said.
They say speed was a factor in the accident and that Kirby was wearing his seatbelt. He wrecked about a mile from home, returning from his friend Jesse's Bowling house.
"I was just so thankful that we were all together and that his last moments on earth were good moments," Bowling said.
Bowling remembers Kirby as a fierce competitor on Altavista High School's cross country team.
"He lives on through us. There's no way we could ever forget him.”
Kirby's girlfriend, Jasmine Lovelace certainly won't.
“He would call me every morning and tell me he loved me. And he always made me laugh when I felt bad. He was my best friend," Lovelace said.
Lending an ear to anyone with a problem.
"He was one of the sweetest guys you'll ever meet. He was a good friend," Devin’s friend Paige Moorefield said.
Well-wishes from those who knew him best are written on a poster in New Prospect Baptist Church, where Kirby was a faithful member of the youth ministry.
Pastor Brady Willis at New Prospect Baptist Church said, "He really did seek to know what it means to live the life of faith."
Kirby is present in every tear and hug, which a mother wishes she could have from her son one more time.
"Wrap your arms around them and tell them you love them. Because they are your life," Moore said.
Kirby's church is planning a celebration of life ceremony for Tuesday.
Youth in the community are invited to New Prospect Baptist Church in Hurt from 3:00 to 5:00 p.m. His funeral service will also be at New Prospect. It's scheduled for Thursday at 2:00 p.m.
Sunday, November 29, 2009
González-García, along with other researchers from USC, the Autonomous University of Barcelona and the University of Leiden (Holland), has confirmed that if bioethanol is produced from these two types of biomass "both CO2 emissions and fossil fuel consumption will be reduced, meeting two of the objectives established by the European Union to promote biofuels".
The results of both studies, published in the journal Renewable and Sustainable Energy Reviews, show that the use of ethanol-based fuels can help to mitigate climate change (by reducing greenhouse gases).
Which is better: flax or Brassica?
The studies developed by the researchers reveal that flax (which is richer in cellulose) can produce up to 0.3 kg of ethanol for every kg of dry biomass, compared with 0.25kg/kg of Brassica. However, when the whole production cycle is analysed, the yellow-flowered plant offers a greater production of biomass per hectare and has a lesser environmental impact.
The biofuel produced from these two plants is "second generation bioethanol", which is obtained from forest or agricultural residues, or from herbaceous crops, and does not enter into direct competition with agricultural crops intended for animal or human consumption.
How to Grow and Care for Flax - A Flower, A Vegetable, A Herb
Perennial, Linum Perenne Lewsii
Flax, is it a flower? Is it a vegetable? Is it medicinal, and therefore, a herb? It's all of this, and more!
Flax is one of those plants that has many uses: As a flower, for health and medicinal use, a grain crop, making fabrics, and much more. Most home gardeners view Flax as one of the very few "True Blue" flowers. To early American Pilgrims, flax was a food staple, put clothes on their back, and for many other uses.
Flax originated in India. It has been used for thousands of years. Pilgrims brought Flax to America. They used the seed for food and nutrition, and to make linseed oil. They used the fibers of the long, thin stems to make clothing, linen and lace. It was also used to make rope, twine, and a variety of other items.
Today, Flax is largely grown commercially in the U.S. to make Linseed Oil. Home gardeners highly value the real blue color of the flowers. Some home gardeners harvest the seed for consumption, especially in herbal teas.
The medicinal uses of Flax are broad. It contains Omega-3, a fatty acid that helps fight many diseases. Medicinal uses include:
Promotes heart health, Lowers cholesterol, Protects against strokes, Lowers blood pressure, Helps guard against breast cancer and other cancers!
As a healthy source of food and nutrition, flax seeds: Are used in herbal teas, can be ground into a low carb meal for making breads and doughs, The oil from the seeds makes linseed oil, and can be used in cooking,Sprouts are used in salads!
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Saturday, November 28, 2009
Costs for solar energy will drop 50% in 2009, while the pre-subsidy cost for other renewable energy technologies will decline by 10%, according to a quarterly research note from New Energy Finance
Prices for all solar photovoltaic (PV) modules have continued their downward trend.
Thin-film solar PV remains the low-cost leader in solar with projects as cheap as US$3/W, making thin-film products 25% less expensive than crystalline silicon on a levelised basis (lifetime cost per kWh before government subsidies).
“So far this year, the steady decline in the cost of equipment in sectors like solar and wind has been largely offset by the increasing costs of financing,” says Michael Liebreich of the London-based New Energy Finance.
Read more at http://www.worldofrenewables.com/
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Friday, November 27, 2009
In the Virginia School Boards Association 2009 Green Schools Challenge, Shenandoah County Public Schools has been named the third place winner for schools with a student population ranging from 5,001 to 10,000.
SCPS received this honor, which included a $1,000 award, and a certificate recognizing the school system as a certified green school division at the Opening General Session of the VSBA’s Annual Convention November 18.
Nine school divisions in Virginia were selected as winners from more than 50, and 30 school divisions were recognized as certified green school divisions.
The VSBA Green Schools Challenge is a friendly competition designed to encourage implementation of specific environmental policies and practical actions that reduce the carbon emissions generated by both the local school division and the broader community. This is the first year the awards were given out. The competition was sponsored by Moseley Architects and TRANE.
While Jeremy Raley, Director of Finance for Shenandoah County Public Schools, initiated the “green” effort and has been the leader for the last two years in helping the division Go Green, it has taken the combined efforts of all personnel to earn this honor and to achieve the savings that have resulted from conservation efforts.
School and division energy management teams were established in the fall of 2008. Throughout 2008-2009, Raley educated staff on practical conservation measures and regularly encouraged schools to reduce electricity and water consumption. He established an internal Go Green! competition among the schools comparing usage numbers and recognized division winners from all three levels at School Board meetings.
End of year data revealed that everyone’s efforts had paid off. During 2008-09, the school division used 1,643,722 fewer KWH than had been used in the previous year.
Water consumption decreased last year by 1,759,600 gallons compared to the previous year. Conserving electricity and water not only saved the county over $180,000 but also helped preserve the environment.
Last May, the Shenandoah County Public Schools Division Energy Management Committee decided to participate in the VSBA Green Schools Challenge.
Raley submitted the school division’s application to the Green School Challenge in October 2009. Of a possible 200 points in areas such as Energy Efficiency, Waste Management, Vehicles, Schools and Student Involvement, SCPS scored 125 points and earned the third place award. The $1,000 award will be donated to Shenandoah County Public Schools’ newly formed foundation.
Within the school division, conservation efforts have continued this school year with savings already apparent.
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Wednesday, November 25, 2009
List of Earthquakes:
1774-02-21. Near Petersburg, Prince George County. A sharp earthquake that was felt over much of Virginia displaced houses "considerably off their foundations" at Blandford and Petersburg. Although the shock was severe at Richmond and terrified residents about 80 km north of Richmond at Fredericksburg, it caused no damage at those towns. Several "smart shocks" were reported in parts of Virginia from Feb. 20th to the 22nd. The main tremor rang bells at Salem (now Winston-Salem), North Carolina. Magnitude 4.5
1833-08-27. Central Virginia. A rather strong shock agitated walls of buildings at Lynchburg (west of Richmond, in southern Amherst County) and rattled windows violently. Fences along the road were shaken near the Louisa County Courthouse, northwest of Richmond. It was described as "severe" at Charlottesville, about 85 km northeast of Lynchburg. Two miners were killed in a panic caused by the tremor at a mine near Richmond. Ref. 179 suggests a MM intensity VI at the epicenter, although no damage was documented. Also felt in the District of Columbia, Maryland, and North Carolina. Magnitude 4.5
1852-04-29. Near Wytheville, Wythe County. A severe earthquake that was observed over a large area threw down a chimney near Wytheville, in southwest Virginia, and shook down tops of chimneys at Buckingham Courthouse, about 55 km south of Charlottesville. Houses were shaken violently at Staunton, about 65 km west of Charlottesville. A brick was shaken from a chimney as far south as Davie County, North Carolina. Also felt in the District of Columbia, Maryland, New York, Ohio, and Pennsylvania. Magnitude 4.9
1852-04-02. Central Virginia. Chimney damage occurred at Buckingham, about 55 km south of Charlottesville. This earthquake was reported to be "quite strong" at Fredericksburg, Richmond, and Scottsville. At Scottsville, where every house in the village was shaken, water in the canal was "troubled," and boats were tossed to and fro. Magnitude 4.3
1875-12-23 (Dec. 22). Central Virginia. The highest intensities from this earthquake occurred mainly at towns near the James River waterfront in Goochland and Powhatan Counties, and in Louisa County. In Richmond (Henrico County), the most severe damage was sustained in the downtown business and residential areas adjacent to the James River or on islands in the river. Damage included bricks knocked from chimneys, fallen plaster, an overturned stove, and several broken windows. Waves "suddenly rose several feet" at the James River dock at Richmond, causing boats to "part their cables" and drift below the wharf. At Manakin, about 20 km west of Richmond, shingles were shaken from a roof and many lamps and chimneys were broken. Several small aftershocks were reported through 1876-01-02. Felt from Baltimore, Maryland, to Greensboro, North Carolina, and from the Atlantic Coast westward to Greenbrier County and White Sulphur Springs, West Virginia. Magnitude 4.5
1897-05-03. Southwest Virginia. This earthquake was most severe at Radford (about 65 km west of Roanoke), where a few chimneys were wrecked and plaster fell from walls. Chimneys were damaged at nearby Pulaski and at Roanoke. Felt in most of southwest Virginia and as far south as Winston-Salem, North Carolina. Magnitude 4.3.)
1897-05-31. Giles County. This earthquake was the largest in intensity and areal extent in Virginia in historical times. The earthquake had a maximum Modified Mercalli Intensity of VIII, and the area of maximum ground motion extended over an elliptical area-from near Lynchburg, Virginia, west to Bluefield, West Virginia, and from Giles County south to Bristol, Tennessee. The MM intensity VIII assigned to this earthquake is based on "many downed chimneys" and "changes in the flow of springs." The shock was felt severely at Narrows, about 3 km west of Pearisburg. Here, the surface rolled in an undulating motion, water in springs became muddy, and water in some springs ceased to flow. The flow of water in springs also was disturbed in the area of Pearisburg, about 70 km west of Roanoke, and Sugar Run. The shock was strong at Pearisburg, where walls of old brick houses were cracked and many chimneys were thrown down or badly damaged. Many chimneys also were shaken down at Bedford, Pulaski, Radford, and Roanoke, Va., and Bristol, Tenn.; many chimneys were damaged at Christiansburg, Dublin, Floyd, Houston, Lexington, Lynchburg, Rocky Mount, Salem, Tazewell, and Wytheville, Va.; Charlotte, Oxford, Raleigh, and Winston, N.C.; Knoxville, Tenn.; and Bluefield, W.Va. Felt from Georgia to Pennsylvania and from the Atlantic Coast westward to Indiana and Kentucky. Aftershocks continued through June 6, 1897. Magnitude 5.8 Mfa NUT.
1898-02-05. Pulaski, Virginia. Bricks were thrown from chimneys, furniture was shifted in a few houses, and residents rushed into the streets at Pulaski, about 70 km southwest of Roanoke. Felt throughout southwest Virginia and south to Raleigh, N.C.
1907-02-11. Near Arvonia, Buckingham County. Chimneys were cracked at Ashby, about 20 km southeast of Arvonia, and a window was broken at a store at Buckingham, 25 km southwest of Arvonia. A "terrific" shock sent people rushing outdoors at Arvonia and displaced furniture. Felt strongly from Powhatan to Albemarle County.
1918-04-10 (Apr. 9). Luray, Page County. In the Shenandoah Valley, at Luray, windows were broken and plaster was cracked severely. Ceilings of houses were cracked badly a few kilometers north of Luray, at Edinburg; windows were broken at Harrisonburg and Staunton, Va., and Washington, D.C. (at Georgetown University). In addition, a new spring formed in Page County, near Hamburg, almost in the middle of a road. A minor aftershock was reported in the area about 5 hours later. Also felt in Maryland, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.
1919-09-06 (Sept. 5). Near Front Royal, Warren County. This earthquake affected towns mainly in Warren and Rappahannock Counties. At Arco, in the Blue Ridge Mountains south of Front Royal, chimneys were damaged, plaster fell from walls, and springs and streams were muddied. Reports from the adjacent northern part of Rappahannock County state that similar shocks were felt and that streams were "rendered turbid." Also felt in parts of Maryland and West Virginia. Several aftershocks occurred.
1929-12-26 (Dec. 25). Charlottesville, Albemarle County. A moderate tremor at Charlottesville shook bricks from chimneys in some places. Also felt in other parts of Albemarle County.
1959-04-23. Giles County. The earthquake was strongest in Giles County, at Eggleston and Pembroke. Residents there reported several damaged chimneys and articles shaken from shelves and walls. One chimney toppled at the Norfolk and Western Railway station in Eggleston. Also felt in West Virginia. Magnitude 3.8
1975-04-11. Southwest Virginia. Windows were broken in the Blacksburg area of Montgomery County, and plaster was cracked at Poplar Hill (south of Pearisburg, in Giles County). Also felt in Pulaski County.
1976-09-13. Southwest Virginia. Bricks fell from chimneys and pictures fell from walls in Surry County at Mount Airy, North Carolina. At the nearby town of Toast, North Carolina, cracks formed in masonry and plaster. The earthquake was observed in many towns in North Carolina and Virginia and in a few towns in South Carolina and West Virginia.
2003-12-09, The 2003 Virginia Earthquake was a magnitude 4.5 earthquake. It occurred on December 9 at 3:59 p.m. EST (20:59 UTC) in the foothills about 30 miles (48 kilometers) west of Richmond and was felt as far away as Norfolk. It was also felt in Danville and county with a boom!
2008-05-06. Annandale. A minor earthquake of magnitude 1.8 shook the Northern Virginia at approximately 1:30 pm. Epicenter was 1 mile SW of Annandale, Virginia.
2009-05-16. Roanoke Valley. A magnitude 3.0 earthquake occurred at 4:08 a.m. EST (04:08 UTC), with its epicenter located in Roanoke County, just outside the City of Roanoke.
2009-07-06 On Monday, July 6, 2009 at 11:59:52 PM EDT, a minor earthquake with a magnitude of mblg=2.3 occurred about 1 km SW of Short Pump, Virginia.
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posted 8:13 pm Wed November 25, 2009 -
from ABC 13 -
A small earth quake has been reported in Nelson, Amherst, and Appomattox Counties.
The US Geological Survey (USGS) confirms it was a 2.7 magnitude earthquake.
Seismograph from VT's station at Randolph College. The large blue section was recorded at 5:25 p.m.
The Virginia Teach seismograph located at Randolph College picked up the quake. The quake also registered on seismographs in Richmond, Roanoke, and Blackburg.
Our newsroom phone rang off the hook Wednesday evening with people saying they heard a loud boom and felt the earth shake around 5:30 p.m.
The calls came from all over in Amherst, Nelson, and Appomattox counties.
Some callers have said that their pictures were knocked off the wall, and one woman said her husband was knocked to the ground.
According to the USGS, the largest damaging earthquake in this area was a magnitude 4.8 in 1875.
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Tuesday, November 24, 2009
BY JOHN R. CRANE
NOVEMBER 21, 2009 • DANVILLE, VA.
Though uranium milling has come a long way since the days of minimal regulations and crude processing methods, mining foes say tailings leaks could still pose a threat to the environment.
George Stanhope, a Chatham resident and member of Southside Concerned Citizens’s board of directors, points to incidents at uranium mining and milling operations in Australia as examples of how present-dayfacilities do not ensure safety.
The Australian government is investigating a tailings dam leak and water contamination at the Ranger uranium mine at Kakadu National Park, according to an Oct. 20 article on an Australian news site,
“This is a modern installation,” Stanhope said.
Patrick Wales, geologist and spokesman for Virginia Uranium Inc., said he would like to know when the tailings management systems at those sites were constructed.
VUI seeks to mine and mill a 119-million-pound uranium ore deposit at Coles Hill, about six miles northeast of Chatham. VUI safeguards at Coles Hill and regulatory oversight would help prevent tailings leaks, Wales said.
“That won’t be allowed to happen (at Coles Hill),” Wales said of the accidents at Ranger and Olympic Dam.
Wales said negative stories about any industry can be found if one looks for it. “You don’t hear any stories about things going well,” he said.
Regulation of uranium processing is complicated.
The Nuclear Regulatory Commission oversees tailings management, but not uranium mining, said Dave McIntyre, an NRC spokesman. A milling facility is licensed by the commission, with the tailings stored according to its regulations, McIntyre said.
Tailings must be covered to prevent leaching into water and to contain radon. “This is part of the licensing process,” McIntyre said.
The NRC regulates the day-to-day operations of a mill-tailing facilities. Other rules must also be followed. For example, the locations for tailings ponds are selected and must be raised above the surrounding ground minimize rainfall accumulation in the pond, said Doug Mandeville, senior project manager with the NRC.
In addition, a “freeboard” requirement imposes a maximum amount of water the impoundment area is allowed to hold.
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has three laws governing uranium milling and mill tailings, said Deb Berlin, press officer with the EPA in Washington. They are the Uranium Mill Tailings Radiation Control Act, the Clean Air Act and Clean Water Act. The EPA, under the Control Act, established public health and environmental standards to be used by the NRC for licensing and overseeing uranium mills and tailings impoundments, Berlin said.
Article not online yet:
Monday, November 23, 2009
Published: November 20, 2009
Charlottesville and Albe-marle County have been given the top award by the Virginia Municipal League for their efforts to implement environmentally friendly practices.
The city and county won the platinum level of certification in the 2009 VML Green Government Challenge, a competition among local governments to encourage specific environmental policies and measures that would reduce carbon emissions.
Both localities earned between 175 and 200 “green points” to get the platinum designation.
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Saturday, November 21, 2009
On October 27, 2008, two international environmental groups -- U.S.-based Blacksmith Institute and Green Cross Switzerland -- issued a Top Ten list of the world's worst pollution problems. The report addresses the role of pollution as a contributing factor to death and disability in the world and highlights the disproportionate effects on children's health.
The Top Ten appear in a report titled, "The World's Worst Pollution Problems: The Top Ten of The Toxic Twenty." The report is the result of an analysis of more than 600 sites in Blacksmith's database of polluted places as well as from nominations by the report’s listed environmental, science and public health experts.
The Top Ten includes both commonly discussed pollution problems like urban air pollution and more overlooked threats like car battery recycling. The report concludes that many of these deaths and related illnesses could be avoided with affordable and effective interventions.
The Top Ten list, unranked within the report, was listed as follows:
• Indoor air pollution
• Urban air quality
• Untreated sewage
• Groundwater contamination
• Contaminated surface water
• Artisanal gold mining
• Industrial mining activities
• Metals smelting and other processing
• Radioactive waste and uranium mining
• Used lead-acid battery recycling
A little known though serious environmental health problem arises from the occupation of Artisanal mining, which refers to mining activities that use rudimentary methods to extract and process minerals and metals on a small scale.
The report also includes a second list of ten additional environmental problems that are claimed in the report to be serious in scope and effect, though not to the extent of the Top Ten list. The second ten list is as follows:
•Agrotoxins and Persistent Organic Pollutants (POPs)
•Coal Power Plants
•Old and Abandoned Chemical Weapons
•Oil Refineries and Petrochemical Plants
To obtain a download copy of the report The World’s Worst Pollution Problems, see the following web site: http://www.worstpolluted.org/
This article was excerpted from the report The World’s Worst Pollution Problems and other publically available information, and was authored by Rick Wilson, Acacia Environmental Group LLC.
This article was authored by Rick Wilson, Acacia Environmental Group LLC.
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Pollution likely affects over a billion people around the world, with millions poisoned and killed each year. The World Heath Organization estimates that 25 percent of all deaths in the developing world are directly attributable to environmental factor.1 Some researchers estimate that exposure to pollution causes 40 percent of deaths annually.2
Pollution is Regarded as a Major (and quickly emerging) Factor in Disease
People affected by pollution problems are much more susceptible to contracting other diseases. Others have impaired neurological development, damaged immune systems, and long-term health problems.
Women and Children are Especially at Risk, Children are Most Susceptible
Children are physiologically different and more vulnerable than adults. In some cases they have higher exposures since they eat, drink and breathe more per kilogram of body weight than adults and tend to ingest a lot more dirt and house dust than adults from their crawling around and playing outside.
Over 40 percent of the global burden of disease falls on them. Indeed, more than three million children under age five die annually from environmental factors.
Death is Not the Only Toll of Exposure to Pollutants
Pollution causes chronic illness, neurological damage and shortened lifespan.
Pollution is Worst in the Developing World
The world’s worst polluted places are in the developing world. Similar conditions no longer exist in the U.S., Canada, Europe, Japan and Australia today. Unfortunately, many of these tactics do not work in developing countries that are trying to increase their industrialization and make themselves economically competitive for manufacturing and processing.
Pollution Contributes to Global Warming
Toxic emission from industry and other sources may contain greenhouse gases. Therefore some sources of pollution contribute to global warming.
Pollution: A Global Killer, a Solvable Problem
The understanding and the technology for remediation of all types of pollution sites is well established in the industrialized world, where life-threatening toxic pollution has almost been eliminated. All that is needed to eliminate pollution worldwide is resources and commitment.
1. “Environment and Health in Developing Countries.” World Health Organization Health and Environmental Linkages Initiative. Last accessed October 21, 2009. Available at http://www.who.int/heli/risks/en/.
2. Pimentel, D. et al. “Ecology of Increasing Diseases: Population Growth and Environmental Degradation.” Human Ecology. 35.6 : 653-668. http://www.news.cornell.edu/stories/Aug07/moreDiseases.sl.html
3. “Lead Toxicity: What are the Physiologic Effects of Lead Exposure?” Case Studies in Environmental Medicine. Last Updated August 20, 2007. Available at http://www.atsdr.cdc.gov/csem/lead/pbphysiologic_effects2.html.
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Friday, November 20, 2009
How much water falls during a rainstorm? (Virginia Rainstorm around Proposed Uranium Mining and Milling)
Flooding at Coles Hill, VA area of proposed Uranium Mine and Milling
Comment: TS Ida, Estimated rainfall for 11-11 thru 11-13-2009 was 4-6 inches, Coles Hill, maybe 3,000 acres so:27,154 gallons (1 inch of rain) x 3,000 = 81,462,000 gallons x 5" of rain= 407,310,000 gallons of rainfall in area of Coles Hills, VA (thanks D&AG)
How much water falls during a rainstorm?
Have you ever wondered how much water falls onto your yard during a rainstorm? Using a 1-inch rainstorm as an example, the table below gives example of how much water falls during your storm for various land areas.
Amount of water received when an inch of rain occurs Area Area (square
miles) Area (square kilometers) Amount of water (gallons) Amount of water (liters)
1 acre .000156 .004 27,154 gallons 102,789 liters
1 square mile 1 2.6 17.38 million gallons 65.78 million liters
Washington, DC 61.4 159 1.07 billion gallons 4.04 billion liters
United States 3,537,438 9,161,922 61,474 billion gallons 232,700 billion liters
There are 640 acres in a square mile.
Once on the land, rainfall either seeps into the ground or becomes runoff, which flows into rivers and lakes. What happens to the rain after it falls depends on many factors such as:
• The rate of rainfall - A lot of rain in a short period tends to run off the land into streams rather than soak into the ground.
• The topography of the land - Topography is the lay of the land -- the hills, valleys, mountains, and canyons. Water falling on unlevel land drains downhill until it becomes part of a stream, finds a hollow place to accumulate, like a lake, or soaks into the ground.
• Soil conditions - There is a lot of dense clay in the southeastern United States that rain has a hard time soaking into. Contrast that to the sandy soils in more desert areas, which allow water to quickly be absorbed, at least initially.
• Density of vegetation - It has long been known that plant growth helps decrease erosion caused by flowing water. If you look at hills without vegetation you'll see gullies dug out by running water. Land with plant cover slows the speed of the water flowing on it and thus helps to keep soil from eroding.
• Amount of urbanization - As a city is being built, a lot of money and construction goes into moving water out of built-up areas. Roads, pavement, and parking lots create impervious areas where water can no longer seep into the ground. Rather, water is funneled into creeks and streams that were never meant by nature to handle so much runoff. This can cause problems in urban areas
Water Equivalents (approximate)
The following equivalents show the relationship between the volume and weight of water and between the volume and speed of flowing water.
Volume and weight
• One inch of rain falling on 1 acre of ground is equal to about 27,154 gallons and weighs about 113 tons.
• An inch of snow falling evenly on 1 acre of ground is equivalent to about 2,715 gallons of water. This figure, however, based upon the "rule-of-thumb" that 10 inches of snow is equal to 1 inch of water, can vary considerable, depending on whether the snow is heavy and wet, or powdery and dry. Heavy, wet snow has a very high water content—4 or 5 inches of this kind of snow contains about 1 inch of water. Thus, an inch of very wet snow over an acre might amount to more than 5,400 gallons of water, while an inch of powdery snow might yield only about 1,300 gallons.
• One acre-foot of water (the amount of water covering 1 acre to a depth of 1 foot) equals 326,000 gallons or 43,560 cubic feet of water, and weighs 2.7 million pounds.
• One cubic mile of water equals 1.1 trillion gallons, 147.2 billion cubic feet, or 3.38 million acre-feet, and weighs 9.2 trillion pounds (4.6 billion tons).
Rate of flow (in a stream)
• Water flowing at the steady rate of 1 gallon per minute is equivalent to: 1,440 gallons per day; 0.00223 cubic foot per second; 192.7 cubic feet per day; or 0.00442 acre-foot of water per day.
• Water flowing at the steady rate of 1 cubic foot per second is equivalent to: 449 gallons per minute; 646,000 gallons per day; 86,400 cubic feet per day; or 1.98 acre-feet of water per day.
• Water flowing at the steady rate of 1 acre-foot per day is equivalent to: 226 gallons per minute; 326,000 gallons per day; 0.504 cubic foot per second; or 43, 560 cubic feet of water per day.
• Water flowing at the steady rate of 1 cubic mile per day is equivalent to: 764.6 million gallons per minute; 1.1 trillion gallons per day; 1.7 million cubic feet per day; or 3.38 million acre-feet of water per day.
Weight of Water per Acre from One Inch of Rain
Llewellyn L. Manske PhD
North Dakota State University
Dickinson Research Extension Center
Water is an integral part of living systems and is essential for plant and animal life. Water in the form of precipitation is unevenly distributed over the land. Each inch of rain is relatively heavy. One inch of rain on a square foot of land weighs 5.20 pounds. One inch of rain on one acre of land weighs 113.31 tons.
The purpose of this report is to explain two procedures to determine the weight of one inch of rain on one acre of land.
The first approach determines the number of cubic inches of water on one acre and the weight in pounds of one cubic inch of water, then uses these values to determine the weight of one inch of rain on one acre. One acre is one rod wide and one-half mile long. A rod is 16.5 feet. A mile is 5280 feet, and a half mile is 2640 feet. The number of square feet in an acre is 16.5 feet times 2640 feet, which equals 43,560 square feet per acre. There are 144 square inches in a square foot. The number of square inches per acre is 43,560 square feet times 144 square inches, which equals 6,272,640 square inches per acre. One inch of rain times 6,272,640 square inches per acre equals 6,272,640 cubic inches of water per acre.
One pint of water weighs one pound (1.04316 lbs/pint). One gallon of water weighs 8.3453 pounds. One cubic foot of water contains 7.48052 gallons. The weight of one cubic foot of water is 7.48052 gallons times 8.3453 pounds, which equals62.42718356 pounds of water per cubic foot. One cubic foot contains 1728 cubic inches.
The weight of one cubic inch of water is 62.42718356 pounds divided by 1728 cubic inches, which equals 0.036126842 pounds of water per cubic inch. The weight of one inch of rain on one acre of land is 6,272,640 cubic inches of water per acre times 0.036126842 pounds of water per cubic inch, which equals 226,610.6763 pounds of water per acre. There are 2000 pounds in one ton. The weight of water per acre, 226,610.6763 pounds divided by 2000 pounds per ton, equals 113.3053382 tons of water in one inch of rain on one acre of land.
1 acre is 1 rod wide and ½ mile long
1 rod = 16.5 feet
1 mile = 5280 feet, ½ mile = 2640 feet
1 acre = 43,560 sq feet
1 sq foot = 144 sq inches
1 acre = 6,272,640 sq inches
1 inch rain on 1 acre = 6,272,640 cu inches water
1 gallon water = 8.3453 pounds
1 cu foot water = 7.48052 gallons
1 cu foot water = 62.42718356 pounds
1 cu foot = 1728 cu inches
1 cu inch water = 0.036126842 pounds
1 cu inch water = 0.004329005 gallons
1 acre inch of water = 27,154.2876 gallons
1 acre inch of water = 226,610.6763 pounds
1 ton = 2000 pounds
1 acre inch of water = 113.3053382 tons
1 acre = 43,560 sq feet/acre X 144 sq in/sq ft = 6,272,640 sq in/acre
X 1 in rain = 6,272,640 cu in water/acre.
1 gallon = 8.3453 pounds X 7.48052 gallons/cu ft =
62.42718356 lbs of water/cu ft ÷ 1728 cu in/cu ft =
0.03612682 lbs of water/cu in X 6,272,640 cu in/acre =
226,610.6763 lbs of water/acre ÷ 2000 lbs/ton = 113.3053382 tons
water/acre per 1 inch rain.
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Wednesday, November 18, 2009
By John Crane
Published: November 17, 2009
Updated: November 18, 2009
Uranium mining opponents say flooding like the type that occurred in Pittsylvania County last week would pollute the water supply if uranium mining and milling take place at Coles Hill.
Coles Rd Flooding, location of proposed Uranium Open Pit Mining!
But officials at Virginia Uranium Inc., who want to mine and mill a massive ore deposit at Coles Hill near Chatham, say tailings management would ensure an environmentally-friendly operation there.
Mills Creek on Coles Rd
“This will be done in a safe and sustainable manner,” said Patrick Wales, geologist and spokesman with VUI.
Left Side of Dry Creek on S. Meadows Rd
Last week, Pittsylvania County officials declared a state of emergency after heavy rains and flooding forced the closure of dozens of roads, including parts of Coles Road — which bisects the VUI project area.
Right hand side of Dry Branch, S. Meadows!
Jack Dunavant, head of Halifax-based Southside Concerned Citizens, which opposes uranium mining, said alpha radiation from tailings, which contain 86 percent of the radiation found in natural uranium, would be washed downstream in a flood and be deposited in fertile low lands where animals graze and crops grow.
“All the animals would be subject to it,” Dunavant said.
Alpha radiation is “the most insidious and dangerous of all” types of radiation that causes birth defects and affects the genetic code, Dunavant said. It can be ingested when consumed in food, drank from water or breathed from mist while a person takes a shower, he said.
Tailings-management facilities have separated the tailings from interaction with the environment at locations all over the world, Wales said. Tailings are typically covered and lined underground with multiple layers of synthetic and clay liners to prevent interaction with surrounding groundwater, Wales said.
“These facilities are designed for severe weather,” Wales said.
A few feet of water can also be kept on top of the tailings to prevent dust.
Karen Maute, a county resident and uranium mining opponent, said last week’s flooding should “give pause” to people downstream and give notice to everyone of the consequences of the long-term storage of waste.
Mining and milling will be a finite operation, but the resulting waste will be around for thousands of years, she said.
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Published: November 18, 2009
CHATHAM — An opponent of uranium mining and milling has asked the Pittsylvania County Board of Supervisors to prohibit uranium mining within a 25-mile radius of the proposed Berry Hill Road industrial megapark site.
Karen Maute, who lives in Pittsylvania County, proposed a resolution to the board and wants Danville City Council and the Danville Pittsylvania Regional Industrial Facilities Authority to sign the resolution along with the county.
Maute proposed the resolution because the 3,700-acre megapark site includes historic Marline mineral leases. Marline Corp. had plans to mine and mill uranium in Pittsylvania County in the early 1980s.
Coy Harville, Westover supervisor and chairman of the board of supervisors, said he would discuss the proposed resolution with the board and RIFA before commenting on it.
Harville said RIFA purchased the property with the condition that the previous owner could not have the mineral rights to the leases.
RIFA has no intention of mining uranium at the Berry Hill megapark site, Harville said.
City and county officials hope to attract a major manufacturer to the park site.
The resolution would enable Danville, Pittsylvania County and RIFA to “avoid the appearance of acting as a broker to purchase land for eventual sale to a uranium mining company…”
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Tuesday, November 17, 2009
The American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (ARRA) is the source of funding for two Virginia energy programs: 1) Efficiency Rebate Program and 2) Solar and Wind Incentive Program. The programs are available for residential and commercial facilities.
The Virginia Department of Mines, Minerals, and Energy (DMME) office has been inundated with calls for these programs. Officials have stated that funds are going quickly and may be gone in about 1 week.
To participate in either program:
You must first visit the website www.dmme.virginia.gov and reserve your rebate.
In 5 to 7 business days, you will receive approval or denial of your rebate reservation.
From that time, you have 180 days to complete your project and submit the required documentation.
The Efficiency Rebate Program has a $2000 cap for residential facilities, plus an optional $250 energy audit, for a total maximum rebate of $2250. The cap for commercial facilities is $4000, plus an optional $250 energy audit, for a total maximum rebate of $4250. Please check the website for eligibility information for heat pumps, furnaces, water heaters, storm doors, replacement windows, insulation, and other items.
The Solar and Wind Incentive Program provides rebates for qualified renewable energy equipment for residential, commercial and nonprofit facilities. Please check the website for rebate amount and eligibility information.
Detailed information about these programs can be found on the Virginia DMME website at www.dmme.virginia.gov/DE/ARRA-Public/SEPRebate.shtml.
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Monday, November 16, 2009
Virginia Seeks FEMA Assistance For Flood Recovery (Flooding in Pittsylvania County, VA, location: Proposed Uranium Mining and Milling)
Flood on South Meadows Rd in Pittsylvania County, VA where proposed uranium tailings ponds may be located!
Source: Governor of Virginia
Posted on: 16th November 2009
Assessment to determine eligibility for federal aid.
Governor Timothy M. Kaine has requested that the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) send preliminary damage assessment teams to Virginia to help determine damage levels from the recent Nor’easter.
“On Saturday, I toured several areas that were affected by this devastating storm, and although we have not yet received completed damage reports from all affected localities, the conditions I saw compelled me to request that FEMA begin their official assessments immediately,” Governor Kaine said. “The recovery process will not be quick or easy, but the Commonwealth will engage every available resource to help affected residents and businesses start to get back to normal.”
South Meadows on side, proposed location uranium tailings ponds
Results from the damage assessment will help determine whether Virginia is eligible for federal disaster assistance. The FEMA teams will be joined during their evaluations by the representatives of the United States Small Business Administration and state and local officials. They will look at damage to public infrastructure as well as homes, apartments and businesses in the impacted areas.
The assessments should begin today and be completed by mid-week.
Saturday, November 14, 2009
Virginia is a southern gem, from the remote beaches of Chincoteague and the Chesapeake Bay to the majestic Blue Ridge Mountains.
However, these special places are not just havens for vacation lovers, they also attract greedy corporations.
Uranium mining was banned in Virginia in the early 1980s.
Now, industry interests in Virginia seek to lift the 25-year ban and begin uranium explorations in the southern county of Pittsylvania.
Uranium mining bears unique and enduring environmental and health risks, the radioactive waste produced by uranium mining is highly water soluble, and is easily transported by water from the mining site.
Virginia enjoys an average annual rainfall of more than 40 inches, significantly higher than the west, where virtually all of United States uranium mining is conducted. This heavy annual rainfall significantly increases the risk of toxic, dangerous radioactive runoff.
Proposals supporting a study left many questions about how a study would be conducted including, where funding would come from for the study and how state officials would proceed once a study was completed.
The study of the health and environmental effects of uranium mining in Virginia must be included in the study.
Clean Water Fund will continue to work with community and other environmental groups to educate residents of the Commonwealth about the need to proceed with caution in deciding whether mining uranium in Virginia can be done safely.
Until then, the moratorium put in place 25 years ago must remain.
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Conservancy suspects hormone-, drug-tainted runoff and sewage
By David A. Fahrenthold
Washington Post Staff Writer
Thursday, November 12, 2009
Pollutants that mimic natural hormones have created a "toxic stew" in the Potomac River, altering the sexual development and the immune systems of fish, a local nonprofit group warned in a report Wednesday.
In its third annual "State of the Nation's River" report, the Potomac Conservancy focused on concerns first raised in 2003, when fish began dying in large numbers in such Potomac tributaries as the Shenandoah River.
As scientists investigated those fish kills, they found that male bass around the Potomac watershed were growing eggs.
The report says it appears that chemicals -- it's still not certain which ones -- in the water are interfering with the hormones that guide development in the fish. It said that potential causes include animal hormones from manure washing off farm fields in the rain and human hormones and pharmaceuticals that are flushed out with treated sewage.
It seems likely, the report said, that the cause is not a single chemical but a mixture whose components might be different around the river.
Hedrick Belin, the conservancy's president, said that the best solution to the problem was to try to keep these chemicals out of the water in the first place.
The report said it's also unclear what these chemicals mean for the health of people in the Washington area, where the Potomac is the original source of much of the region's tap water.
"But the intersex fish . . . is a clear signal that something is wrong."
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Friday, November 13, 2009
Comment: Our weather and climate is not suitable for any type of mining!
ERA halts mining at Ranger ahead of cyclone
Uranium producer Energy Resources of Australia Ltd (ERA) has ceased mining at its Ranger mine in the Northern Territory as the operation braces for Tropical Cyclone Helen. (The Sydney Morning Herald Jan. 4, 2008)Mining resumed on Jan. 7, 2008. (The Australian Jan. 7, 2008)
Heavy rainfall stops uranium mining at Ranger
Uranium miner Energy Resources of Australia Ltd (ERA) has stopped mining at its Ranger mine in the Northern Territory following heavy monsoonal rain. ERA said mining stopped on Feb. 27, 2007, and the processing plant closed on Feb. 28, 2007, after several days of heavy rain. (The Age March 1, 2007)
Mining operations restarted at Ranger on Mar. 7, 2007.
The shutdown and re-start of the processing plant resulted in the loss of approximately 300 tonnes of uranium oxide production. In addition, the elevated water level in the mine resulting from the high rainfall will restrict access to ore in the second half of 2007 and into 2008.
It is now expected that Pit 3 will be emptied of water by November 2007. This will allow mining of ore at the bottom of the pit and, subject to experiencing a normal wet season, should allow production in 2008 to be restored to normal levels. (ERA Sep. 27, 2007)
Senator criticizes ERA's use of sandbags at Ranger to slow uranium-contaminated flow into Kakadu National Park
Energy Resources of Australia, for the fourth wet season in a row, is using a sandbag wall to slow uranium-contaminated flow from retention pond No. 1 at its Ranger mine into the environment. Northern Territory Labor Senator Trish Crossin has condemned as inadequate the sandbag wall for raising the height of a retention pond spillway. According to ERA, the bags were an effective way of reducing water flow into the park while an inquiry was underway into elevated uranium levels in the pond. (ABC March 20; Advertiser March 21, 2002)
Leak at Ranger mine kept secrect for weeks
Energy Resources of Australia (ERA) has kept secret a leak of 2000 cubic meters of manganese contaminated water from its Ranger mine to a nearby wetland for several weeks. The leak was detected by ERA on April 5, but was not reported to the authorities until April 28, 2000. This delay meant the leak was not public knowledge when the Federal Government reported to the United Nations on April 15 on the sensitive subject of Ranger's successor, Jabiluka.
ERA did not know when the leak started because wet season flooding from late December prevented testing of the area. (The Age 3 May 2000, Sydney Morning Herald 4 May 2000)
S. Meadows Rd at Proposed Uranium MineTailingsPonds
NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE BLACKSBURG VA
1036 PM EST FRI NOV 13 2009
...THE FLOOD WARNING IS CANCELLED FOR THE FOLLOWING RIVERS
ROANOKE RIVER AT ALTAVISTA AFFECTING CAMPBELL AND PITTSYLVANIA
...THE FLOOD WARNING CONTINUES FOR THE FOLLOWING RIVERS IN
ROANOKE RIVER AT BROOKNEAL AFFECTING CAMPBELL...CHARLOTTE AND
ROANOKE RIVER AT RANDOLPH AFFECTING CHARLOTTE AND HALIFAX COUNTIES
DAN RIVER NEAR DANVILLE AFFECTING CASWELL...CITY OF DANVILLE AND
DAN RIVER NEAR PACES AFFECTING HALIFAX COUNTY
DAN RIVER AT SOUTH BOSTON AFFECTING HALIFAX COUNTY
MINOR TO MODERATE FLOODING IS OCCURRING AND EXPECTED TO CONTINUE.
RIVER LEVELS CONTINUE TO BE ABOVE FLOOD STAGE ALONG THE LOWER ROANOKE
RIVER DOWNSTREAM BELOW ALTAVISTA AND ALONG THE DAN RIVER
FROM DANVILLE DOWNSTREAM TO SOUTH BOSTON. THE ROANOKE RIVER WAS SLOWLY
FALLING AT BROOKNEAL AND WAS CRESTING AT RANDOLPH. THE DAN RIVER CONTINUED
TO FALL AT DANVILLE AND SHOULD DROP BELOW FLOOD STAGE EARLY SATURDAY
MORNING. PACES WAS CRESTING NEAR 27.0 FEET AND SHOULD OSCILLATE AT
OR JUST ABOVE 27 FEET BEFORE FALLING LATE TONIGHT. LEVELS ALONG THE DAN
RIVER AT SOUTH BOSTON CONTINUE TO SLOWLY RISE. THE CURRENT FORECAST OF A
29-FOOT CREST ON SATURDAY MORNING IS BARELY INTO THE MAJOR FLOOD CATEGORY
BUT IF IT OCCURS WOULD ONLY BE THE 10TH HIGHEST CREST ON RECORD.
LISTEN TO NOAA WEATHER RADIO OR YOUR FAVORITE MEDIA OUTLET FOR LATER
STATEMENTS OR WARNINGS.
GRAPHICAL FORECAST INFORMATION IS AVAILABLE ON THE INTERNET AT
HTTP://WWW.ERH.NOAA.GOV/RNK (LOWER CASE). CLICK ON `RIVERS and LAKES
THE NEXT SCHEDULED STATEMENT REGARDING THE DAN AND ROANOKE RIVERS
WILL BE ISSUED BY 6 AM SATURDAY.
1036 PM EST FRI NOV 13 2009
THE FLOOD WARNING CONTINUES FOR
THE DAN RIVER NEAR DANVILLE.
* UNTIL SATURDAY AFTERNOON.
* AT 09PM FRIDAY THE STAGE WAS 21.0 FEET.
* MODERATE FLOODING IS OCCURRING AND MINOR FLOODING IS FORECAST.
* FLOOD STAGE IS 17.0 FEET.
* THE RIVER WILL CONTINUE TO FALL TO BELOW FLOOD STAGE LATE
* THIS CREST COMPARES TO A PREVIOUS CREST OF 20.8 FEET ON SEP 30
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Fri Nov 13 2009 01:08 PM ET
If we could tap into renewable energy, really tap into it (overcome politics and naysayers), we could reduce global power demand by 30 percent and be totally green by 2030.
So say civil and environmental engineering professor Mark Jacobson of Stanford University and researcher Mark Delucchi of the University of California-Davis.
A great summary of the work on Futurity.org and an article in the latest issue of Scientific American, A Plan to Power 100 Percent of the Planet with Renewables. What would it take?
- 3.8 million large wind turbines (a space about the size of the island of Manhattan)
- 90,000 solar plants
- numerous geothermal, tidal and rooftop photovoltaic installations worldwide
Thursday, November 12, 2009
The National Weather Service: Wind Advisory for Pittsylvania, VA, River Flood Warning for Pittsylvania County, VA (Proposed Uranium Mining)
Comment: People of Virginia please review the following information: The wind advisories and flood warnings for documentation for ALL people who think open-pit uranium mining would work well in a climate such as Virginia. To even consider Uranium mining and milling in VA would be an environmental disaster waiting to happen -- and, an extremely costly one to attempt to remediate.
Wind Advisory for Pittsylvania, VA
until 6 am EST, Fri., Nov. 13, 2009
Issued by The National Weather Service
7:44 pm EST, Thu., Nov. 12, 2009
A WIND ADVISORY REMAINS IN EFFECT UNTIL 6 AM EST FRIDAY.
EXPECT NORTH TO NORTHEAST WIND AT 15 TO 30 MPH... WITH GUSTS UP TO 45 MPH POSSIBLE. BECAUSE OF THE WET SOIL CONDITIONS... THESE WINDS WILL LIKELY BE STRONG ENOUGH TO DOWN MORE TREES... AND POSSIBLY CAUSE POWER OUTAGES.
THIS WIND ADVISORY MEANS THAT WINDS WILL BE HIGH ENOUGH COMBINED WITH WET SOILS TO DOWN SOME TREES. USE CAUTION IF TRAVELING AS THESE GUSTS COULD DOWN LIMBS AND TREES ALONG HIGHWAYS.
... STRONG AND GUSTY NORTHEAST WINDS WILL CONTINUE TONIGHT...
.DEEP LOW PRESSURE ALONG THE NORTH CAROLINA OUTER BANKS WILL REMAIN IN THE REGION OVERNIGHT. AS A RESULT... WINDS WILL GUST TO 40 TO 45 MPH AT TIMES THROUGH FRIDAY MORNING.
River Flood Warning for Pittsylvania County, VA
until 6:13 am EST, Sat., Nov. 14, 2009
Issued by The National Weather Service
3:10 pm EST, Thu., Nov. 12, 2009
THE FLOOD WARNING CONTINUES FOR THE DAN RIVER NEAR DANVILLE. * UNTIL SATURDAY MORNING. * AT 01PM THURSDAY THE STAGE WAS 23.3 FEET. * MODERATE FLOODING IS OCCURRING AND MAJOR FLOODING IS FORECAST. * FLOOD STAGE IS 17.0 FEET. * THE RIVER WILL CONTINUE RISING TO NEAR 26.4 FEET BY AROUND MIDNIGHT TONIGHT. THE RIVER WILL FALL BELOW FLOOD STAGE TOMORROW EVENING. * THIS CREST COMPARES TO A PREVIOUS CREST OF 25.4 FEET ON JAN 1 2007.
Flood Warning for Pittsylvania County, VA
until 10:45 pm EST, Thu., Nov. 12, 2009
Issued by The National Weather Service
2:28 pm EST, Thu., Nov. 12, 2009
THE NATIONAL WEATHER SERVICE IN BLACKSBURG HAS EXTENDED THE
* FLOOD WARNING FOR URBAN AREAS AND SMALL STREAMS IN... ROCKINGHAM COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NORTH CAROLINA STOKES COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NORTH CAROLINA CASWELL COUNTY IN NORTH CENTRAL NORTH CAROLINA CITY OF DANVILLE IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA CITY OF MARTINSVILLE IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA PATRICK COUNTY IN SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA HALIFAX COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA FRANKLIN COUNTY IN WEST CENTRAL VIRGINIA CHARLOTTE COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA CITY OF BEDFORD IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA CAMPBELL COUNTY IN CENTRAL VIRGINIA CITY OF LYNCHBURG IN CENTRAL VIRGINIA APPOMATTOX COUNTY IN CENTRAL VIRGINIA BUCKINGHAM COUNTY IN CENTRAL VIRGINIA AMHERST COUNTY IN CENTRAL VIRGINIA HENRY COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA PITTSYLVANIA COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA BEDFORD COUNTY IN SOUTH CENTRAL VIRGINIA
* UNTIL 1045 PM EST.
* AT 210 PM EST DOPPLER RADAR SHOWED LIGHT TO MODERATE RAIN SPREADING BACK WESTWARD INTO THE PIEDMONTS OF SOUTHWEST VIRGINIA AND NORTHWEST NORTH CAROLINA. THIS MAY BRING AN ADDITIONAL HALF INCH TO INCH OF RAIN THROUGH 700 PM. THIS ADDITIONAL RAIN IS NOT EXPECTED TO CAUSE MORE FLOODING... BUT IT WILL HELP KEEP STREAMS OUT OF THEIR BANKS INTO THE EVENING HOURS.
* FLOODING IS TRANSITIONING TO THE LARGER STREAMS AND RIVERS IN THE AREA AND THE SMALLER CREEKS ARE RECEDING. SOME OF THE LARGER STREAMS AND RIVERS LIKELY TO CONTINUE FLOODING INTO THE EVENING INCLUDE THE FOLLOWING... THE PIGG RIVER... THE FALLING RIVER... THE SMITH RIVER... THE MAYO RIVER... THE BLACKWATER RIVER... THE SLATE RIVER... THE BIG OTTER RIVER... THE BANNISTER RIVER... AND THE HEADWATERS OF DAN RIVER ABOVE DANVILLE IN ROCKINGHAM COUNTY NORTH CAROLINA.
By John Crane
Danville Register & Bee
Published: November 12, 2009
Persistent rains prompted Pittsylvania County officials to declare a state of emergency in the county Thursday.
“The county of Pittsylvania is facing serious hazards with the amount of downed trees, power lines and potential of flooding due to (rains),” said County Emergency Services Coordinator Jim Davis and County Administrator Dan Sleeper — who’s also deputy director of emergency management — in a statement Thursday. “Due to these hazards, a condition of extreme peril of life and property now exists throughout (the) county.”
Davis later said the declaration was issued as a precautionary measure and he knew of no weather-related emergency situations.
“We don’t know what’s going to happen with the river rising like it is,” Davis said. “… At this point, we’ve not had any type life-threatening emergencies,” he said Thursday.
Gov. Timothy M. Kaine declared a state of emergency for the commonwealth Wednesday due to high waters and flooding.
There were 26 reported road closures in Pittsylvania County on Thursday evening due to flooding and high waters, said Randy Hamilton, residency administrator for the Virginia Department of Transportation in Chatham.
Paula Jones, VDOT spokeswoman, said the roads that had high waters were ones that typically flood during extended rainfalls. Jones advised drivers to proceed with caution, especially since water can cause hydroplaning and wet leaves can add to already slick conditions.
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Virginia has the second-dirtiest waterways among the 50 states.
That's according to a recent study by the Environment America advocacy group tallying the amount of pollutants discharged into bodies of water across the nation.
Based on numbers reported to federal authorities, only Indiana had more toxic chemicals released into its waterways by industry than Virginia's 18 million-plus pounds in 2007.
That is the most recent year for which discharge figures are publicly available from the Environmental Protection Agency, which collects the data.
The report also awards this dubious distinction to the Old Dominion: It is home to a portion of the nation's second-most-polluted waterway, the roughly 320-mile New River, which snakes through southwest Virginia and two other states. The most polluted waterway, it says, is the Ohio River.
"Nearly half of the rivers and lakes in the U.S. are considered too polluted for safe fishing or swimming," said Sarah Driscoll, an official with the Virginia chapter of Environment America.
In Hampton Roads, most waterways are low in the state rankings. The Elizabeth River, for example, had about 14,257 pounds of toxics dumped into it in 2007, making it the 18th-most-polluted waterway in Virginia.
In contrast, the James River, which cuts across Virginia's midsection, had nearly 1.7 million pounds of pollutants pumped into it two years ago, making it the second-dirtiest in the state (after the Clinch River) and 31st-worst nationally, according to the study.
As part of a pitch for passage of clean-water legislation by Congress, the Environment America analysis focuses on current discharge levels, separating discharged chemicals into categories of those linked to cancer, to developmental disorders and to reproductive problems.
"It is good news that we are so far down the list in terms of industrial discharge now because we are one of the most industrialized rivers on the East Coast," Jackson said of the Elizabeth.
The bad news, she said, is that the river still contains toxic chemicals dumped in it years ago.
Julian Walker, (804) 697-1564, email@example.com
Wednesday, November 11, 2009
Board still wrestling with possible uranium-mining study
By John Crane
Published: November 11, 2009
Staff with the National Research Council is continuing to try to determine how the agency will proceed with a possible uranium-mining study.
The National Research Council Governing Board’s Executive Committee met Tuesday in Washington to discuss the proposal for a study to determine whether uranium can be mined and milled safely in Virginia.
“Given the complexity with several institutions involved (Virginia Tech, the Virginia Coal and Energy Commission), our staff is continuing to work on how we will go about doing the study,” said Jennifer Walsh, spokeswoman for the National Academy of Sciences. “So far, our standard statement of task and approval process is not yet complete.”
The NRC is an arm of the NAS.
Walsh did not comment further when asked about details regarding the study and when the next executive committee meeting will be held.
VUI, through Virginia Tech’s Center for Coal and Energy Research, would pay for the study’s first phase focusing on the technical and public-safety aspects of mining.
If the governing board approves the study request, the next step would be the NRC negotiating and entering into a contract with Virginia Tech’s Center for Coal and Energy Research.
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Uranium study on hold
By TIM DAVIS/Star-Tribune Editor
Wednesday, November 11, 2009 9:24 AM EST
The National Research Council's governing board wants more time to set up a proposed statewide scientific study on uranium mining.
The council's executive committee met Tuesday afternoon in Washington, D.C., but delayed approving a contract for the study.
"Given the complexity with several institutions involved, our staff is continuing to work on how we will go about doing the study," said Jennifer Walsh, a spokesman for the National Research Council. "So, our standard statement of task and approval process is not yet complete."
The National Research Council, which includes the National Academy of Sciences, presented its recommendations for a study in May to the Virginia Commission on Coal and Energy's Uranium Mining Subcommittee.
Commission Chairman Del. Terry Kilgore of Scott County still expects a contract with the National Academy of Sciences to be signed soon.
The study, which is expected to take about 18 months and cost an estimated $1.2 million, will be funded through Virginia Tech, with Virginia Uranium Inc. picking up the tab.
Virginia Uranium announced plans two years ago to explore mining uranium at Coles Hill, about six miles northeast of Chatham.
Kilgore said the state also plans to conduct a study of the socioeconomic impact of uranium mining.
Virginia has had a moratorium on uranium mining since 1982.
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Office of the Governor Timothy M. Kaine
November 11, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Contact: Gordon Hickey
Phone: (804) 225-4260
Cell Phone: (804) 291-8977
GOVERNOR KAINE ANNOUNCES COMMITMENT TO MID-ATLANTIC OFFSHORE WIND PARTNERSHIP
~ Mid-Atlantic Governors agree to formal tri-state partnership to develop renewable energy source ~
RICHMOND—Governor Timothy M. Kaine, Governor Martin O’Malley of Maryland, and Governor Jack Markell of Delaware agreed today on a tri-state partnership for the deployment of offshore wind energy in the Mid-Atlantic coastal region. The three states signed a Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) creating a formal partnership that will build on the region’s significant offshore wind resources to generate clean, renewable energy and a sustainable market that will bring new economic opportunities.
“With our extensive coastline and highly-educated workforce, Virginia is particularly well-suited to explore offshore wind energy opportunities,” said Virginia Governor Timothy M. Kaine. “In these tough economic times, it's more important than ever that we invest in renewable energy sources that will create jobs and provide cleaner, more affordable energy for our families and communities. One of the best things we can do to lift ourselves out of a challenging economy today is to invest in a greener, cleaner tomorrow.”
Through the MOU, the Mid-Atlantic States will focus on leveraging resources and information to bring offshore wind energy to the region, which in turn, will create green jobs for our workers and clean energy alternatives for our families and businesses. Immediate tasks under the MOU are to identify common transmission strategies for offshore wind energy deployment in the region, discuss ways to encourage sustainable market demand for this renewable resource and work collaboratively in pursuing federal energy policies which help advance offshore wind in the Mid-Atlantic area.
Virginia is already positioned to be a leader in the development of offshore wind energy. On September 15, Governor Kaine submitted a letter to Elizabeth Birnbaum, director of the U.S. Department of the Interior’s Minerals Management Service, formally requesting the formation of a federal-state-local task force to guide and facilitate the process of leasing federal waters off the Virginia coast for wind power development. The formation of the task force will be the first step in what will ultimately be the development of a clean, renewable energy source for Virginians and the introduction of a new sector to the Hampton Roads and Virginia economy.
Today marks another important step towards a clean energy future for our families and workers. The opportunity for renewable energy generation through off shore wind is outstanding,” remarked Maryland’s Governor Martin O’Malley. “Our states share many common resources and opportunities. This collaboration will allow us to take full advantage of these opportunities and pool our collective abilities for not only a Smart, Green and Growing Maryland, but a cleaner and more sustainable region as well.”
“With the only power purchase agreement in place for offshore wind in the United States, Delaware is poised to be the first state in the nation to develop an offshore wind farm, bringing clean power to the region and creating hundreds of jobs,” said Governor Jack Markell of Delaware. “This agreement will help us leverage the resources and energy of our three state governments to help our region become the true powerhouse for this important source of renewable, reliable alternative energy.”
The MOU also calls for examination of ways to coordinate regional supply chain facilities to secure supply, deployment, and operations and maintenance functions to support offshore wind energy facilities. Collaboration on strategies to utilize academic institutions to create standards and opportunities for training and workforce development will also be developed.
This coordinated effort will provide benefits for each state individually by efficiently targeting areas of common interest to the region. Moreover, this effort will greatly facilitate our regional engagement with federal entities such as the Minerals Management Service, the Federal Energy Regulatory Commission, and the Department of Defense.
In December 2008, Governor Kaine launched Renew Virginia, a year-long series of legislative and administrative actions promoting renewable energy, creating green jobs, and encouraging preservation of the environment. The development of offshore wind power is an important component of this effort to promote clean energy and provide career-length green jobs in the wind energy and associated sectors. Developing the Commonwealth’s offshore wind resources is consistent with the Virginia Energy Plan and the recommendations of the Governor’s Commission on Climate Change. During his administration, Governor Kaine has incentivized the production of cleaner energy, surveyed the emissions of facilities previously grandfathered out of the Clean Air act, dedicated over a billion dollars to Chesapeake Bay cleanup, protected nearly 350,000 acres of open space, and led the effort to promote regional cooperation to combat climate change.