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The all-purpose heavy duty Climate Chaos thread (sprinkled with hope).

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  • Options
    Lerxst1992Lerxst1992 Posts: 6,113
    $66 billion for rail in the Brandon crime family infrastructure law, a law that only 13, 13 house Repubs, 13, voted for.

    gift article.

    https://wapo.st/3rlrAys


    I wish rail was a viable option in the states. As I mentioned to Brian, I just don’t see it as realistic in the states although here in NY we do have an extensive rail network.

    back in august I considered traveling to a Friday night show from NY to DC. Commuter rail to Penn and then Amtrak to within a ten minute walk to venue/hotel.

    Problem is? Amtrak wanted $400 round trip, nearly double the per night hotel cost and almost eight times the cost of the concert ticket. If that were in Japan or Europe, the train ticket would be at least half less. It’s just not a realistic option, unless we’re willing to buy the tickets far in advance. The American way? Gouge the consumer if they want to travel without far in advance planning, even by a quasi govt run railroad.
  • Options
    $66 billion for rail in the Brandon crime family infrastructure law, a law that only 13, 13 house Repubs, 13, voted for.

    gift article.

    https://wapo.st/3rlrAys


    I wish rail was a viable option in the states. As I mentioned to Brian, I just don’t see it as realistic in the states although here in NY we do have an extensive rail network.

    back in august I considered traveling to a Friday night show from NY to DC. Commuter rail to Penn and then Amtrak to within a ten minute walk to venue/hotel.

    Problem is? Amtrak wanted $400 round trip, nearly double the per night hotel cost and almost eight times the cost of the concert ticket. If that were in Japan or Europe, the train ticket would be at least half less. It’s just not a realistic option, unless we’re willing to buy the tickets far in advance. The American way? Gouge the consumer if they want to travel without far in advance planning, even by a quasi govt run railroad.
    For travel here in NY it has gone down.  People don't like crowded trains since covid and don't like feeling unsafe on a subway.  I also have workers that flat out refuse to do LIRR.

    With the upcoming commuter tax to enter the city and all the red light and speed cameras they are basically forcing people to take mass transit.

    It does suck when you're life is dictated by the LIRR but it can be quite convenient to getting to the city.  Brooklyn?  No.  It sucks going there any type of way.

    Trains in the DC metro area were good.  Chicago they were good.  Seattle has a light rail that ventures out into the surrounding cities which was also good.

    LA we talked about metro link and riders said it needed work.

    What ever happened to our proposed bullet train here?  I forgot why that got knocked down.
  • Options
    ZodZod Posts: 10,099
    I had no idea what rail could be like until I went to Europe 10+ years ago.   It felt insane.   You could get almost anywhere by train, there wasn't a big need to drive.  We started with car rentals, but it's awful driving in some of the big cities over there.  Once we figured out the trains were a thing, we did the 2nd half of the trip all by train.   It is a shame in North America it lacks so much (especially here in Canada).
  • Options
    HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon Winnipeg Posts: 35,808
    edited September 2023
    and it's more freaking expensive than flying. which means it will never be adopted. I know it's very difficult to institute that when so many of our cities are so far apart, but man, would it be awesome to be able to hit a train and see the country rather than just the clouds. 
    Post edited by HughFreakingDillon on
    Darwinspeed, all. 

    Cheers,

    HFD




  • Options
    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    Zod said:
    I had no idea what rail could be like until I went to Europe 10+ years ago.   It felt insane.   You could get almost anywhere by train, there wasn't a big need to drive.  We started with car rentals, but it's awful driving in some of the big cities over there.  Once we figured out the trains were a thing, we did the 2nd half of the trip all by train.   It is a shame in North America it lacks so much (especially here in Canada).
    That sounds wonderful, Zod.  I've heard similar stories from others who have been to Europe.  It frustrates me that we, the great old USA, can't (or won't) match that wonder and smart kind of travel experience.
    and it's more freaking expensive than flying. which means it will never be adopted. I know it's very difficult to institute that when so many of our cities are so far apart, but man, would it be awesome to be able to hit a train and see the country rather than just the clouds. 

    Years ago, I lived in western NY state for a year and came back via Amtrak.  Went from Buffalo, NY to Chicago, the Chicago to Oakland.  It was a terrific experience!  If Amtrak (or a competitor) got their shit together and enticed riders with excellent service and reasonable prices, many people would find this a great way to travel- better than flying!

    I'm told the train ride across southern Canada is a great experience.  My pop wanted very badly to do that but never got around to it.
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













  • Options
    HughFreakingDillonHughFreakingDillon Winnipeg Posts: 35,808
    brianlux said:
    Zod said:
    I had no idea what rail could be like until I went to Europe 10+ years ago.   It felt insane.   You could get almost anywhere by train, there wasn't a big need to drive.  We started with car rentals, but it's awful driving in some of the big cities over there.  Once we figured out the trains were a thing, we did the 2nd half of the trip all by train.   It is a shame in North America it lacks so much (especially here in Canada).
    That sounds wonderful, Zod.  I've heard similar stories from others who have been to Europe.  It frustrates me that we, the great old USA, can't (or won't) match that wonder and smart kind of travel experience.
    and it's more freaking expensive than flying. which means it will never be adopted. I know it's very difficult to institute that when so many of our cities are so far apart, but man, would it be awesome to be able to hit a train and see the country rather than just the clouds. 

    Years ago, I lived in western NY state for a year and came back via Amtrak.  Went from Buffalo, NY to Chicago, the Chicago to Oakland.  It was a terrific experience!  If Amtrak (or a competitor) got their shit together and enticed riders with excellent service and reasonable prices, many people would find this a great way to travel- better than flying!

    I'm told the train ride across southern Canada is a great experience.  My pop wanted very badly to do that but never got around to it.
    taking the train from coast to coast is a bucket list item for my wife and I. But it's super expensive. hopefully one day. 
    Darwinspeed, all. 

    Cheers,

    HFD




  • Options
    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    brianlux said:
    Zod said:
    I had no idea what rail could be like until I went to Europe 10+ years ago.   It felt insane.   You could get almost anywhere by train, there wasn't a big need to drive.  We started with car rentals, but it's awful driving in some of the big cities over there.  Once we figured out the trains were a thing, we did the 2nd half of the trip all by train.   It is a shame in North America it lacks so much (especially here in Canada).
    That sounds wonderful, Zod.  I've heard similar stories from others who have been to Europe.  It frustrates me that we, the great old USA, can't (or won't) match that wonder and smart kind of travel experience.
    and it's more freaking expensive than flying. which means it will never be adopted. I know it's very difficult to institute that when so many of our cities are so far apart, but man, would it be awesome to be able to hit a train and see the country rather than just the clouds. 

    Years ago, I lived in western NY state for a year and came back via Amtrak.  Went from Buffalo, NY to Chicago, the Chicago to Oakland.  It was a terrific experience!  If Amtrak (or a competitor) got their shit together and enticed riders with excellent service and reasonable prices, many people would find this a great way to travel- better than flying!

    I'm told the train ride across southern Canada is a great experience.  My pop wanted very badly to do that but never got around to it.
    taking the train from coast to coast is a bucket list item for my wife and I. But it's super expensive. hopefully one day. 

    I hope you do it!  I'd love to hear about it.  I always felt bad that my pop never got around to it. 

    I would encourage anyone here in the US who likes trains and likes the idea of becoming smart like Europe, China, and Japan as far as train service go to support US rail service and join Rail Passenger Association (formerly NARP) and /or RailPAC:

    I don't know if Canada has similar organizations.  Perhaps?
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













  • Options
    brianlux said:
    Zod said:
    I had no idea what rail could be like until I went to Europe 10+ years ago.   It felt insane.   You could get almost anywhere by train, there wasn't a big need to drive.  We started with car rentals, but it's awful driving in some of the big cities over there.  Once we figured out the trains were a thing, we did the 2nd half of the trip all by train.   It is a shame in North America it lacks so much (especially here in Canada).
    That sounds wonderful, Zod.  I've heard similar stories from others who have been to Europe.  It frustrates me that we, the great old USA, can't (or won't) match that wonder and smart kind of travel experience.
    and it's more freaking expensive than flying. which means it will never be adopted. I know it's very difficult to institute that when so many of our cities are so far apart, but man, would it be awesome to be able to hit a train and see the country rather than just the clouds. 

    Years ago, I lived in western NY state for a year and came back via Amtrak.  Went from Buffalo, NY to Chicago, the Chicago to Oakland.  It was a terrific experience!  If Amtrak (or a competitor) got their shit together and enticed riders with excellent service and reasonable prices, many people would find this a great way to travel- better than flying!

    I'm told the train ride across southern Canada is a great experience.  My pop wanted very badly to do that but never got around to it.
    taking the train from coast to coast is a bucket list item for my wife and I. But it's super expensive. hopefully one day. 
    Same here.  Buddy of mine is an engineer in West Virginia area and right now is his favorite time of year when the foliage starts changing colors.
  • Options
    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    More things to consider regarding solar farms in desert regions:

    "While the black surfaces of solar panels absorb most of the sunlight that reaches them, only a fraction (around 15 percent) of that incoming energy gets converted to electricity. The rest is returned to the environment as heat. The panels are usually much darker than the ground they cover, so a vast expanse of solar cells will absorb a lot of additional energy and emit it as heat, affecting the climate.

    If these effects were only local, they might not matter in a sparsely populated and barren desert. But the scale of the installations that would be needed to make a dent in the world’s fossil energy demand would be vast, covering thousands of square kilometers. Heat re-emitted from an area this size will be redistributed by the flow of air in the atmosphere, having regional and even global effects on the climate."

    And this:
    "...coccidioidomycosis or valley fever, a fungus infection associated with alkaline soils and carried far and wide by the winds wherever the desert surface is disturbed by agriculture, mining or construction." (-Edward Abbey, chapter 18, The Monkey Wrench Gang.) This is an ever growing concern in desert regions and it, among other environmental concerns is becoming more common as a result of the massive impact on desert soils where solar arrays are being built.  A much better place for them is on top of existing buildings.



    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













  • Options
    Hey, screw climate change. All a big hoax, no problem. It’s normal weather.

    A saltwater wedge climbing the Mississippi River threatens drinking water

    Officials are scrambling in an effort to hold back the encroaching sea and prevent the saltwater wedge from heading toward New Orleans.

    For six generations, Ricky Becnel’s family has run the massive tree nursery on the banks of the Mississippi River near Belle Chasse, La. Its 20 acres and half a million trees, most of them citrus, require pumping about 100,000 gallons a day of fresh water from the river during the warm season.

    But in recent days, as salt water from the Gulf of Mexico has crept steadily up the drought-stricken river and within a mile of Saxon Becnel and Sons, he has scrambled to prepare for very real possibility that the farm’s lifeblood might soon be unusable.

    “It’s been consuming me … I never thought I’d have to worry about this,” said Becnel, whose business supplies trees to large retailers around the country.

    For the second year in a row, drought has severely weakened the flow of the Mississippi River, allowing a mass of saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico to force its way dozens of miles inland.

    The steady creep of that saltwater wedge — which could threaten drinking water supplies in multiple Louisiana communities, undermine agriculture and prove corrosive to infrastructure — has left officials to scramble in an effort to slow down the encroaching sea.

    “Based off the current forecast and projections, if no action is taken, we potentially could see the saltwater wedge all the way up to the French Quarter,” Col. Cullen Jones, commander of the New Orleans District office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said at a recent news conference. “But we have no intention of not taking any action.”

    The most immediate action includes expanding an underwater barrier, known as a sill, that the Corps initially constructed in July in an effort to slow the progression of saltwater from the Gulf.

    Ricky Boyett, a Corps spokesman, said work on the underwater levee is expected to begin early next week and continue for roughly two weeks. Ultimately, workers plan to create a barrier that rises 60 feet from the river bottom and stretches about 2,200 feet, in an effort to slow the march of saltwater up river and buy time.

    “I want to be clear that if the current conditions persist, we will not be able to prevent overtopping of the sill by saltwater,” Jones said. “But we can delay it.”

    Keeping that saltwater at bay is crucial.

    Already this summer, Plaquemines Parish, where the Mississippi meets the Gulf of Mexico, has been forced to provide bottled water to thousands of residents, as the area struggles with boil water notices and a constant threat of saltwater intrusion.

    “It’s been a trial beyond trials,” parish president Keith Hinkley told reporters at a recent news conference.

    In a typical year, the flow of the Mississippi is generally sufficient to prevent salt water from intruding very far upstream. But several factors in recent months have allowed salt water to find its way at least 64 miles up the river so far.

    In particular, the ongoing drought along the Mississippi means that without substantial rain further north, the river’s flow could soon reach as low as 130,000 cubic feet per second — close to its lowest recorded flow ever of 120,000 cubic feet per second in 1988.

    That year, the saltwater wedge stretched as far as Kenner, La., on the outskirts of New Orleans.

    The bottom of the river, which has been heavily dredged, is lower than sea level until it reaches Natchez, Miss. That topography also makes it easier for salt water to flow along the river bottom, underneath the less dense fresh water.

    The underwater barrier that the Corps constructed in July is not unprecedented. It has undertaken similar work in 1988, 1999, 2012 and again in 2022, when a prolonged drought drove water levels on the Mississippi to historic lows.

    But as the current drought persistsand the river’s flow weakens, Jones said, the Corps determined it had to do more to slow the influx of saltwater. Otherwise, he said, the saltwater wedge is on pace to continue upriver and expected to impact a freshwater intake facility at Belle Chase, La., in early October.

    Beyond the perils it poses to drinking water supplies, saltwater intrusion can be corrosive to home appliances and to equipment in industrial facilities. It also can harm crops and complicate caring for livestock.

    Even as it works to enlarge the current underwater levee, the Corps said it would leave a “notch” in the sill — 620 feet wide and 55 feet deep — to allow oceangoing vessels to continue to transport cargo up and down the river.

    The latest predicament has numerous man-made and natural contributors, said Mark Davis, a professor at Tulane Law School and director of the university’s Center for Environmental Law. But the warming atmosphere is one unavoidable factor.

    “This is just another example of what climate change, drought and sea level rise can look like,” Davis said.

    He said while the issues posed by saltwater intrusion have happened in the past, the frequency and intensity of recent droughts are new. In consecutive years, he noted, drought has caused angst up and down the Mississippi, from barge operators to farmers to water managers. And those extremes have profound economic consequences.

    “It doesn’t mean that every instance is climate, but when it happens repeatedly, the impacts are exactly what climate scientists and experts have been saying can happen,” Davis said.

    As fights over water availability rage across the West and elsewhere, Davis said the past two drought-stricken years should serve as a reminder of the need to safeguard the Mississippi’s viability.

    “The amount of river it takes to push the Gulf of Mexico back and keep economies going needs to be appreciated, not just along the river, but nationally,” he said. “This river does not have lots of water to share.”

    Boyett said the little rain forecast for the Mississippi River valley in coming weeks isn’t nearly enough to change the current calculus. For the river to grow strong enough to once again force the saltwater wedge downstream, it needs to reach about 300,000 cubic feet per second.

    “The power of the river is what keeps saltwater out,” he said.

    In the meantime, the Corps is preparing for the possibility that it might need to bring water in on barges to help treatment plants reduce salinity and ensure safe drinking supplies. The agency is also working to acquire reverse osmosis systems that can help localities filter out harmful salt.

    Becnel also has been watching the forecast closely. With little rain in sight, he knows it could be a matter of days until his once-reliable source of water turns salty. “Time is not on our side,” he said.

    He has explored the possibility of digging a well, temporarily drawing from the municipal water supply or investing in his own reverse osmosis system. Every option has downsides. But hundreds of thousands of his trees need water; stores across the country want trees to sell, and generations of his family are counting on the business to press on.

    “To say the least, we’re very concerned,” Becnel said. “We’ve got a lot of people counting on us.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/09/21/saltwater-wedge-mississippi-river-drought/


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    Libtardaplorable©. And proud of it.

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  • Options
    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    Hey, screw climate change. All a big hoax, no problem. It’s normal weather.

    A saltwater wedge climbing the Mississippi River threatens drinking water

    Officials are scrambling in an effort to hold back the encroaching sea and prevent the saltwater wedge from heading toward New Orleans.

    For six generations, Ricky Becnel’s family has run the massive tree nursery on the banks of the Mississippi River near Belle Chasse, La. Its 20 acres and half a million trees, most of them citrus, require pumping about 100,000 gallons a day of fresh water from the river during the warm season.

    But in recent days, as salt water from the Gulf of Mexico has crept steadily up the drought-stricken river and within a mile of Saxon Becnel and Sons, he has scrambled to prepare for very real possibility that the farm’s lifeblood might soon be unusable.

    “It’s been consuming me … I never thought I’d have to worry about this,” said Becnel, whose business supplies trees to large retailers around the country.

    For the second year in a row, drought has severely weakened the flow of the Mississippi River, allowing a mass of saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico to force its way dozens of miles inland.

    The steady creep of that saltwater wedge — which could threaten drinking water supplies in multiple Louisiana communities, undermine agriculture and prove corrosive to infrastructure — has left officials to scramble in an effort to slow down the encroaching sea.

    “Based off the current forecast and projections, if no action is taken, we potentially could see the saltwater wedge all the way up to the French Quarter,” Col. Cullen Jones, commander of the New Orleans District office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said at a recent news conference. “But we have no intention of not taking any action.”

    The most immediate action includes expanding an underwater barrier, known as a sill, that the Corps initially constructed in July in an effort to slow the progression of saltwater from the Gulf.

    Ricky Boyett, a Corps spokesman, said work on the underwater levee is expected to begin early next week and continue for roughly two weeks. Ultimately, workers plan to create a barrier that rises 60 feet from the river bottom and stretches about 2,200 feet, in an effort to slow the march of saltwater up river and buy time.

    “I want to be clear that if the current conditions persist, we will not be able to prevent overtopping of the sill by saltwater,” Jones said. “But we can delay it.”

    Keeping that saltwater at bay is crucial.

    Already this summer, Plaquemines Parish, where the Mississippi meets the Gulf of Mexico, has been forced to provide bottled water to thousands of residents, as the area struggles with boil water notices and a constant threat of saltwater intrusion.

    “It’s been a trial beyond trials,” parish president Keith Hinkley told reporters at a recent news conference.

    In a typical year, the flow of the Mississippi is generally sufficient to prevent salt water from intruding very far upstream. But several factors in recent months have allowed salt water to find its way at least 64 miles up the river so far.

    In particular, the ongoing drought along the Mississippi means that without substantial rain further north, the river’s flow could soon reach as low as 130,000 cubic feet per second — close to its lowest recorded flow ever of 120,000 cubic feet per second in 1988.

    That year, the saltwater wedge stretched as far as Kenner, La., on the outskirts of New Orleans.

    The bottom of the river, which has been heavily dredged, is lower than sea level until it reaches Natchez, Miss. That topography also makes it easier for salt water to flow along the river bottom, underneath the less dense fresh water.

    The underwater barrier that the Corps constructed in July is not unprecedented. It has undertaken similar work in 1988, 1999, 2012 and again in 2022, when a prolonged drought drove water levels on the Mississippi to historic lows.

    But as the current drought persistsand the river’s flow weakens, Jones said, the Corps determined it had to do more to slow the influx of saltwater. Otherwise, he said, the saltwater wedge is on pace to continue upriver and expected to impact a freshwater intake facility at Belle Chase, La., in early October.

    Beyond the perils it poses to drinking water supplies, saltwater intrusion can be corrosive to home appliances and to equipment in industrial facilities. It also can harm crops and complicate caring for livestock.

    Even as it works to enlarge the current underwater levee, the Corps said it would leave a “notch” in the sill — 620 feet wide and 55 feet deep — to allow oceangoing vessels to continue to transport cargo up and down the river.

    The latest predicament has numerous man-made and natural contributors, said Mark Davis, a professor at Tulane Law School and director of the university’s Center for Environmental Law. But the warming atmosphere is one unavoidable factor.

    “This is just another example of what climate change, drought and sea level rise can look like,” Davis said.

    He said while the issues posed by saltwater intrusion have happened in the past, the frequency and intensity of recent droughts are new. In consecutive years, he noted, drought has caused angst up and down the Mississippi, from barge operators to farmers to water managers. And those extremes have profound economic consequences.

    “It doesn’t mean that every instance is climate, but when it happens repeatedly, the impacts are exactly what climate scientists and experts have been saying can happen,” Davis said.

    As fights over water availability rage across the West and elsewhere, Davis said the past two drought-stricken years should serve as a reminder of the need to safeguard the Mississippi’s viability.

    “The amount of river it takes to push the Gulf of Mexico back and keep economies going needs to be appreciated, not just along the river, but nationally,” he said. “This river does not have lots of water to share.”

    Boyett said the little rain forecast for the Mississippi River valley in coming weeks isn’t nearly enough to change the current calculus. For the river to grow strong enough to once again force the saltwater wedge downstream, it needs to reach about 300,000 cubic feet per second.

    “The power of the river is what keeps saltwater out,” he said.

    In the meantime, the Corps is preparing for the possibility that it might need to bring water in on barges to help treatment plants reduce salinity and ensure safe drinking supplies. The agency is also working to acquire reverse osmosis systems that can help localities filter out harmful salt.

    Becnel also has been watching the forecast closely. With little rain in sight, he knows it could be a matter of days until his once-reliable source of water turns salty. “Time is not on our side,” he said.

    He has explored the possibility of digging a well, temporarily drawing from the municipal water supply or investing in his own reverse osmosis system. Every option has downsides. But hundreds of thousands of his trees need water; stores across the country want trees to sell, and generations of his family are counting on the business to press on.

    “To say the least, we’re very concerned,” Becnel said. “We’ve got a lot of people counting on us.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/09/21/saltwater-wedge-mississippi-river-drought/


    I'd bet anything most republicans, even a lot of the hard right know climate change is real and not a hoax.  But the will keep pretending to deny it because it all wrapped up in their warped sick scheme to burn the whole place down. It's like if they can't win, they will throw a fit and break everything they touch.  Rather twisted thinking.

    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













  • Options
    brianlux said:
    Hey, screw climate change. All a big hoax, no problem. It’s normal weather.

    A saltwater wedge climbing the Mississippi River threatens drinking water

    Officials are scrambling in an effort to hold back the encroaching sea and prevent the saltwater wedge from heading toward New Orleans.

    For six generations, Ricky Becnel’s family has run the massive tree nursery on the banks of the Mississippi River near Belle Chasse, La. Its 20 acres and half a million trees, most of them citrus, require pumping about 100,000 gallons a day of fresh water from the river during the warm season.

    But in recent days, as salt water from the Gulf of Mexico has crept steadily up the drought-stricken river and within a mile of Saxon Becnel and Sons, he has scrambled to prepare for very real possibility that the farm’s lifeblood might soon be unusable.

    “It’s been consuming me … I never thought I’d have to worry about this,” said Becnel, whose business supplies trees to large retailers around the country.

    For the second year in a row, drought has severely weakened the flow of the Mississippi River, allowing a mass of saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico to force its way dozens of miles inland.

    The steady creep of that saltwater wedge — which could threaten drinking water supplies in multiple Louisiana communities, undermine agriculture and prove corrosive to infrastructure — has left officials to scramble in an effort to slow down the encroaching sea.

    “Based off the current forecast and projections, if no action is taken, we potentially could see the saltwater wedge all the way up to the French Quarter,” Col. Cullen Jones, commander of the New Orleans District office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said at a recent news conference. “But we have no intention of not taking any action.”

    The most immediate action includes expanding an underwater barrier, known as a sill, that the Corps initially constructed in July in an effort to slow the progression of saltwater from the Gulf.

    Ricky Boyett, a Corps spokesman, said work on the underwater levee is expected to begin early next week and continue for roughly two weeks. Ultimately, workers plan to create a barrier that rises 60 feet from the river bottom and stretches about 2,200 feet, in an effort to slow the march of saltwater up river and buy time.

    “I want to be clear that if the current conditions persist, we will not be able to prevent overtopping of the sill by saltwater,” Jones said. “But we can delay it.”

    Keeping that saltwater at bay is crucial.

    Already this summer, Plaquemines Parish, where the Mississippi meets the Gulf of Mexico, has been forced to provide bottled water to thousands of residents, as the area struggles with boil water notices and a constant threat of saltwater intrusion.

    “It’s been a trial beyond trials,” parish president Keith Hinkley told reporters at a recent news conference.

    In a typical year, the flow of the Mississippi is generally sufficient to prevent salt water from intruding very far upstream. But several factors in recent months have allowed salt water to find its way at least 64 miles up the river so far.

    In particular, the ongoing drought along the Mississippi means that without substantial rain further north, the river’s flow could soon reach as low as 130,000 cubic feet per second — close to its lowest recorded flow ever of 120,000 cubic feet per second in 1988.

    That year, the saltwater wedge stretched as far as Kenner, La., on the outskirts of New Orleans.

    The bottom of the river, which has been heavily dredged, is lower than sea level until it reaches Natchez, Miss. That topography also makes it easier for salt water to flow along the river bottom, underneath the less dense fresh water.

    The underwater barrier that the Corps constructed in July is not unprecedented. It has undertaken similar work in 1988, 1999, 2012 and again in 2022, when a prolonged drought drove water levels on the Mississippi to historic lows.

    But as the current drought persistsand the river’s flow weakens, Jones said, the Corps determined it had to do more to slow the influx of saltwater. Otherwise, he said, the saltwater wedge is on pace to continue upriver and expected to impact a freshwater intake facility at Belle Chase, La., in early October.

    Beyond the perils it poses to drinking water supplies, saltwater intrusion can be corrosive to home appliances and to equipment in industrial facilities. It also can harm crops and complicate caring for livestock.

    Even as it works to enlarge the current underwater levee, the Corps said it would leave a “notch” in the sill — 620 feet wide and 55 feet deep — to allow oceangoing vessels to continue to transport cargo up and down the river.

    The latest predicament has numerous man-made and natural contributors, said Mark Davis, a professor at Tulane Law School and director of the university’s Center for Environmental Law. But the warming atmosphere is one unavoidable factor.

    “This is just another example of what climate change, drought and sea level rise can look like,” Davis said.

    He said while the issues posed by saltwater intrusion have happened in the past, the frequency and intensity of recent droughts are new. In consecutive years, he noted, drought has caused angst up and down the Mississippi, from barge operators to farmers to water managers. And those extremes have profound economic consequences.

    “It doesn’t mean that every instance is climate, but when it happens repeatedly, the impacts are exactly what climate scientists and experts have been saying can happen,” Davis said.

    As fights over water availability rage across the West and elsewhere, Davis said the past two drought-stricken years should serve as a reminder of the need to safeguard the Mississippi’s viability.

    “The amount of river it takes to push the Gulf of Mexico back and keep economies going needs to be appreciated, not just along the river, but nationally,” he said. “This river does not have lots of water to share.”

    Boyett said the little rain forecast for the Mississippi River valley in coming weeks isn’t nearly enough to change the current calculus. For the river to grow strong enough to once again force the saltwater wedge downstream, it needs to reach about 300,000 cubic feet per second.

    “The power of the river is what keeps saltwater out,” he said.

    In the meantime, the Corps is preparing for the possibility that it might need to bring water in on barges to help treatment plants reduce salinity and ensure safe drinking supplies. The agency is also working to acquire reverse osmosis systems that can help localities filter out harmful salt.

    Becnel also has been watching the forecast closely. With little rain in sight, he knows it could be a matter of days until his once-reliable source of water turns salty. “Time is not on our side,” he said.

    He has explored the possibility of digging a well, temporarily drawing from the municipal water supply or investing in his own reverse osmosis system. Every option has downsides. But hundreds of thousands of his trees need water; stores across the country want trees to sell, and generations of his family are counting on the business to press on.

    “To say the least, we’re very concerned,” Becnel said. “We’ve got a lot of people counting on us.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/09/21/saltwater-wedge-mississippi-river-drought/


    I'd bet anything most republicans, even a lot of the hard right know climate change is real and not a hoax.  But the will keep pretending to deny it because it all wrapped up in their warped sick scheme to burn the whole place down. It's like if they can't win, they will throw a fit and break everything they touch.  Rather twisted thinking.

    Wait? I thought it was dems turned everything they touched to shit? Any comments from the good gubner of Mississippi?
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    Hey, screw climate change. All a big hoax, no problem. It’s normal weather.

    A saltwater wedge climbing the Mississippi River threatens drinking water

    Officials are scrambling in an effort to hold back the encroaching sea and prevent the saltwater wedge from heading toward New Orleans.

    For six generations, Ricky Becnel’s family has run the massive tree nursery on the banks of the Mississippi River near Belle Chasse, La. Its 20 acres and half a million trees, most of them citrus, require pumping about 100,000 gallons a day of fresh water from the river during the warm season.

    But in recent days, as salt water from the Gulf of Mexico has crept steadily up the drought-stricken river and within a mile of Saxon Becnel and Sons, he has scrambled to prepare for very real possibility that the farm’s lifeblood might soon be unusable.

    “It’s been consuming me … I never thought I’d have to worry about this,” said Becnel, whose business supplies trees to large retailers around the country.

    For the second year in a row, drought has severely weakened the flow of the Mississippi River, allowing a mass of saltwater from the Gulf of Mexico to force its way dozens of miles inland.

    The steady creep of that saltwater wedge — which could threaten drinking water supplies in multiple Louisiana communities, undermine agriculture and prove corrosive to infrastructure — has left officials to scramble in an effort to slow down the encroaching sea.

    “Based off the current forecast and projections, if no action is taken, we potentially could see the saltwater wedge all the way up to the French Quarter,” Col. Cullen Jones, commander of the New Orleans District office of the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, said at a recent news conference. “But we have no intention of not taking any action.”

    The most immediate action includes expanding an underwater barrier, known as a sill, that the Corps initially constructed in July in an effort to slow the progression of saltwater from the Gulf.

    Ricky Boyett, a Corps spokesman, said work on the underwater levee is expected to begin early next week and continue for roughly two weeks. Ultimately, workers plan to create a barrier that rises 60 feet from the river bottom and stretches about 2,200 feet, in an effort to slow the march of saltwater up river and buy time.

    “I want to be clear that if the current conditions persist, we will not be able to prevent overtopping of the sill by saltwater,” Jones said. “But we can delay it.”

    Keeping that saltwater at bay is crucial.

    Already this summer, Plaquemines Parish, where the Mississippi meets the Gulf of Mexico, has been forced to provide bottled water to thousands of residents, as the area struggles with boil water notices and a constant threat of saltwater intrusion.

    “It’s been a trial beyond trials,” parish president Keith Hinkley told reporters at a recent news conference.

    In a typical year, the flow of the Mississippi is generally sufficient to prevent salt water from intruding very far upstream. But several factors in recent months have allowed salt water to find its way at least 64 miles up the river so far.

    In particular, the ongoing drought along the Mississippi means that without substantial rain further north, the river’s flow could soon reach as low as 130,000 cubic feet per second — close to its lowest recorded flow ever of 120,000 cubic feet per second in 1988.

    That year, the saltwater wedge stretched as far as Kenner, La., on the outskirts of New Orleans.

    The bottom of the river, which has been heavily dredged, is lower than sea level until it reaches Natchez, Miss. That topography also makes it easier for salt water to flow along the river bottom, underneath the less dense fresh water.

    The underwater barrier that the Corps constructed in July is not unprecedented. It has undertaken similar work in 1988, 1999, 2012 and again in 2022, when a prolonged drought drove water levels on the Mississippi to historic lows.

    But as the current drought persistsand the river’s flow weakens, Jones said, the Corps determined it had to do more to slow the influx of saltwater. Otherwise, he said, the saltwater wedge is on pace to continue upriver and expected to impact a freshwater intake facility at Belle Chase, La., in early October.

    Beyond the perils it poses to drinking water supplies, saltwater intrusion can be corrosive to home appliances and to equipment in industrial facilities. It also can harm crops and complicate caring for livestock.

    Even as it works to enlarge the current underwater levee, the Corps said it would leave a “notch” in the sill — 620 feet wide and 55 feet deep — to allow oceangoing vessels to continue to transport cargo up and down the river.

    The latest predicament has numerous man-made and natural contributors, said Mark Davis, a professor at Tulane Law School and director of the university’s Center for Environmental Law. But the warming atmosphere is one unavoidable factor.

    “This is just another example of what climate change, drought and sea level rise can look like,” Davis said.

    He said while the issues posed by saltwater intrusion have happened in the past, the frequency and intensity of recent droughts are new. In consecutive years, he noted, drought has caused angst up and down the Mississippi, from barge operators to farmers to water managers. And those extremes have profound economic consequences.

    “It doesn’t mean that every instance is climate, but when it happens repeatedly, the impacts are exactly what climate scientists and experts have been saying can happen,” Davis said.

    As fights over water availability rage across the West and elsewhere, Davis said the past two drought-stricken years should serve as a reminder of the need to safeguard the Mississippi’s viability.

    “The amount of river it takes to push the Gulf of Mexico back and keep economies going needs to be appreciated, not just along the river, but nationally,” he said. “This river does not have lots of water to share.”

    Boyett said the little rain forecast for the Mississippi River valley in coming weeks isn’t nearly enough to change the current calculus. For the river to grow strong enough to once again force the saltwater wedge downstream, it needs to reach about 300,000 cubic feet per second.

    “The power of the river is what keeps saltwater out,” he said.

    In the meantime, the Corps is preparing for the possibility that it might need to bring water in on barges to help treatment plants reduce salinity and ensure safe drinking supplies. The agency is also working to acquire reverse osmosis systems that can help localities filter out harmful salt.

    Becnel also has been watching the forecast closely. With little rain in sight, he knows it could be a matter of days until his once-reliable source of water turns salty. “Time is not on our side,” he said.

    He has explored the possibility of digging a well, temporarily drawing from the municipal water supply or investing in his own reverse osmosis system. Every option has downsides. But hundreds of thousands of his trees need water; stores across the country want trees to sell, and generations of his family are counting on the business to press on.

    “To say the least, we’re very concerned,” Becnel said. “We’ve got a lot of people counting on us.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/climate-environment/2023/09/21/saltwater-wedge-mississippi-river-drought/


    I watched a great special about the bayous in LA and how they change with the weather and if you looked at a map from 50 years ago the waterways have all changed.

    That to me is amazing in itself.
  • Options
    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 35,684
    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    mickeyratmickeyrat up my ass, like Chadwick was up his Posts: 35,684
    _____________________________________SIGNATURE________________________________________________

    Not today Sir, Probably not tomorrow.............................................. bayfront arena st. pete '94
    you're finally here and I'm a mess................................................... nationwide arena columbus '10
    memories like fingerprints are slowly raising.................................... first niagara center buffalo '13
    another man ..... moved by sleight of hand...................................... joe louis arena detroit '14
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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    mickeyrat said:

    There it is, all right there.  That "delicate balance" that a certain percentage of our population is either unaware of or (more often) oblivious or in denial of.  And here we are, all these years later, over the brink. 
    It's hard to think about but still, thanks for posting that, M.  Sagan was amazing.
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    PJ_Soul said:

    I would rate this as a tiny step forward.  The article mentioned "so-called sustainable aviation fuels" which I think sounds a bit like an oxymoron.  I would be more optimistic about this if it part of the push were to reduce air travel in general, and even more hopeful if railroad travel was being more encouraged.  Railroads are the most energy efficient of all forms of none ambulatory travel.

    And I'm sorry, I don't mean to be a dour downing here.  Little steps forward are better than nothing. 
    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    PJ_SoulPJ_Soul Vancouver, BC Posts: 49,515
    brianlux said:
    PJ_Soul said:

    I would rate this as a tiny step forward.  The article mentioned "so-called sustainable aviation fuels" which I think sounds a bit like an oxymoron.  I would be more optimistic about this if it part of the push were to reduce air travel in general, and even more hopeful if railroad travel was being more encouraged.  Railroads are the most energy efficient of all forms of none ambulatory travel.

    And I'm sorry, I don't mean to be a dour downing here.  Little steps forward are better than nothing. 

    I fully agree. Like I said, it's something, lol. But steps like this are very very important in the long run. It starts here and down the road it results in a completely clean fuel or something, who knows. Air travel isn't going anywhere of course. I agree about the train travel though. It really sucks that America made itself a car country instead of a train country after WWII.
    With all its sham, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be careful. Strive to be happy. ~ Desiderata
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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    PJ_Soul said:
    brianlux said:
    PJ_Soul said:

    I would rate this as a tiny step forward.  The article mentioned "so-called sustainable aviation fuels" which I think sounds a bit like an oxymoron.  I would be more optimistic about this if it part of the push were to reduce air travel in general, and even more hopeful if railroad travel was being more encouraged.  Railroads are the most energy efficient of all forms of none ambulatory travel.

    And I'm sorry, I don't mean to be a dour downing here.  Little steps forward are better than nothing. 

    I fully agree. Like I said, it's something, lol. But steps like this are very very important in the long run. It starts here and down the road it results in a completely clean fuel or something, who knows. Air travel isn't going anywhere of course. I agree about the train travel though. It really sucks that America made itself a car country instead of a train country after WWII.

    Yes times a hundred! 
    I was very happy back in September that the Biden administration- and BIG kudos to Pete Buttigieg- stepped up to fund railroad improvements.

    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
    Variously credited to Mark Twain or Edward Abbey.













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    Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 36,576
    If you ever want to really know what is going on and what is happening? Watch what and how our military prioritizes.

    $1 billion for climate resilience funding at the Defense Department. 

    Sorry for not quoting but don’t, whatever you do, waste your time.
    09/15/1998 & 09/16/1998, Mansfield, MA; 08/29/00 08/30/00, Mansfield, MA; 07/02/03, 07/03/03, Mansfield, MA; 09/28/04, 09/29/04, Boston, MA; 09/22/05, Halifax, NS; 05/24/06, 05/25/06, Boston, MA; 07/22/06, 07/23/06, Gorge, WA; 06/27/2008, Hartford; 06/28/08, 06/30/08, Mansfield; 08/18/2009, O2, London, UK; 10/30/09, 10/31/09, Philadelphia, PA; 05/15/10, Hartford, CT; 05/17/10, Boston, MA; 05/20/10, 05/21/10, NY, NY; 06/22/10, Dublin, IRE; 06/23/10, Northern Ireland; 09/03/11, 09/04/11, Alpine Valley, WI; 09/11/11, 09/12/11, Toronto, Ont; 09/14/11, Ottawa, Ont; 09/15/11, Hamilton, Ont; 07/02/2012, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/04/2012 & 07/05/2012, Berlin, Germany; 07/07/2012, Stockholm, Sweden; 09/30/2012, Missoula, MT; 07/16/2013, London, Ont; 07/19/2013, Chicago, IL; 10/15/2013 & 10/16/2013, Worcester, MA; 10/21/2013 & 10/22/2013, Philadelphia, PA; 10/25/2013, Hartford, CT; 11/29/2013, Portland, OR; 11/30/2013, Spokane, WA; 12/04/2013, Vancouver, BC; 12/06/2013, Seattle, WA; 10/03/2014, St. Louis. MO; 10/22/2014, Denver, CO; 10/26/2015, New York, NY; 04/23/2016, New Orleans, LA; 04/28/2016 & 04/29/2016, Philadelphia, PA; 05/01/2016 & 05/02/2016, New York, NY; 05/08/2016, Ottawa, Ont.; 05/10/2016 & 05/12/2016, Toronto, Ont.; 08/05/2016 & 08/07/2016, Boston, MA; 08/20/2016 & 08/22/2016, Chicago, IL; 07/01/2018, Prague, Czech Republic; 07/03/2018, Krakow, Poland; 07/05/2018, Berlin, Germany; 09/02/2018 & 09/04/2018, Boston, MA; 09/08/2022, Toronto, Ont; 09/11/2022, New York, NY; 09/14/2022, Camden, NJ; 09/02/2023, St. Paul, MN;

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    brianluxbrianlux Moving through All Kinds of Terrain. Posts: 40,675
    If you ever want to really know what is going on and what is happening? Watch what and how our military prioritizes.

    $1 billion for climate resilience funding at the Defense Department. 

    Sorry for not quoting but don’t, whatever you do, waste your time.

    A link would help, lol.
    My understanding is  that the purpose for climate resilience funding is to support measures in protecting lands and waters critical for adapting to climate change.  How that ties in with defense, I don't know. 
    We've obviously reached a point of no return for climate change.  It's happening, and it's going to get worse.  More and more, the efforts being made are focused on adapting.  That's great, I suppose, but I think what's more important is to take measures to limit how badly our impact is in increasing climate change. In other words, slow it down. The only way I could never see those actions being a waste of time would be if one's perspective is the notion that the sooner climate change gets worse, the sooner humans will be wiped out, the sooner the planet  can get busy reestablishing it's balances as nature strongly tends to do.  I suppose that is a valid argument.
    But humans are going to go away anyway.  I'm not cynical enough to desire that to happen sooner than later.  At least I don't feel that way all the time- maybe 49% of the times, and I don't like feeling that cynical. 

    “The fear of death follows from the fear of life. A man [or woman] who lives fully is prepared to die at any time.”
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    Halifax2TheMaxHalifax2TheMax Posts: 36,576
    End of times. Trying to appeal to the MAGA crowd?

    Climate change is altering Earth’s rotation enough to mess with our clocks


    Climate change is messing with time itself.

    The melting of polar ice due to global warming is affecting Earth’s rotation and could have an impact on precision timekeeping, according to a paper published Wednesday in the journal Nature.

    The planet is not about to jerk to a halt, nor speed up so rapidly that everyone gets flung into space. But timekeeping is an exact science in a highly technological society, which is why global authorities more than half a century ago felt compelled by the slight changes in Earth’s rotation to invent the concept of the “leap second.”

    Climate change is now making these calculations even more complicated: In just a few years it may be necessary to insert a “negative leap second” into the calendar to get the planet’s rotation in sync with Coordinated Universal Time.

    “Global warming is managing to actually measurably affect the rotation of the entire Earth,” said study author Duncan Agnew, a geophysicist at the University of California at San Diego. “Things are happening that have not happened before.”

    The core problem in timekeeping

    Timekeeping has traditionally had an astronomical basis. Earth is a type of a clock. In simpler times, the planet would spin one full revolution on its axis, and everyone would call it a day.

    Technologists, however, demand excruciating levels of exactitude. Atomic clocks and not sundials now tell us what time it is. In atomic time, a second is defined as 9,192,631,770 oscillations of a Cesium atom. The goal of the people who want to get things exactly right is to make sure that atomic time is perfectly in sync with astronomical time.

    For example, GPS satellites need to know exactly where Earth is beneath them — and precisely what time it is — to accurately get you from your house to the nearest Arby’s.

    But Earth doesn’t spin at a perfectly constant speed. Our planet is in a complicated gravitational dance with the moon, the sun, the oceanic tides, Earth’s own atmosphere and the motion of the planet’s solid inner core.

    Unhelpfully, Earth’s core is unavailable for close scrutiny and “is a bit of a black box,” as Agnew noted. Geophysicists can infer some details about the planet’s interior by drilling into select areas of the sea floor. And as The Post reported last year, scientists have discerned changes in Earth’s rotation that appear to match 70-year oscillations in the rotation of the core.

    But when scientists try to describe what Earth is doing at any given moment, they have to factor in a lot of slop and wobble.

    The planet’s fluctuating spin rate is carefully tracked by the International Earth Rotation and Reference Systems Service (formerly the only slightly less bombastically named International Earth Rotation Service). In the early 1970s, Earth was clearly slowing down in its rotation, and a gap was forming between atomic time and astronomical time. Thus was born the “leap second” to adjust for the fact that the “day” was getting a bit longer.

    Twenty-seven leap seconds have been added to Universal Coordinated Time since 1972. The addition of a leap second happens at the last tick of the clock on the night of Dec. 31.

    Making the leap

    But hold on: Earth is not slowing down anymore. It’s actually been speeding up a bit. In fact, there hasn’t been a leap second added since the end of 2016.

    Here is where the casual reader’s head might start spinning. The melting of the ice caps in Antarctica and Greenland shifts mass — meltwater — toward the equator. That process increases the equatorial bulge of the planet. Meanwhile, at the poles, the land that had been pressed down by ice rises, and Earth becomes more spherical.

    These two changes in the planet’s shape have opposite effects on Earth’s rotation, according to Judah Levine, a physicist at the National Institute of Standards and Technology in Boulder, Colo.

    The new paper by Agnew contends that, although the core is causing the planet to spin faster, the planetary shape changes caused by a warming climate are slowing that process. Absent this effect, Agnew wrote, the overall acceleration of the planet’s rotation might require timekeepers to insert a “negative leap second” at the end of 2026. Because of climate change, that might not be necessary until 2029, he found.

    Levine, who is not part of this new study, said the science is credible, but he was not prepared to sign off on the conclusion because it is inherently tricky to predict what Earth is going to do.

    “There’s a very great uncertainty about this,” Levine said. “A few years ago, there were predictions in the other direction.”

    Nick Stamatakos, head of the U.S. Naval Observatory’s Earth Orientation Department, said in an email that, although it’s more likely a negative leap second will need to be adopted, there’s no way to know for sure what the planet will do.

    “It is like a weather prediction of a big storm or hurricane. We can’t say for certain what will happen and when. However, we can say there is a higher percentage chance of a negative leap second than say 25 years ago,” Stamatakos wrote.

    He noted that his brother-in-law teases him every time a leap second gets added, declaring, “Wow that was a long year — an entire extra second!” Stamatakos’s response: “Well, in that one second, the Earth rotated about four football fields.”

    https://www.washingtonpost.com/science/2024/03/27/leap-second-melting-poles-climate-time/


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