January 28, 2014 |
WEST BERLIN, N.J. - Qari Nazar Gul was an elusive target. The top-level Taliban commander rarely left Pakistan for operations in Afghanistan. He dispatched couriers and ordered attacks from afar. Gul knew there was an eye in the sky and did not want to take a chance. In 2010, the eye belonged to Capt. Steve Iaquinto Jr., a targeting officer in charge of four aerial drones that searched for Taliban fighters in four provinces north of Kabul. The New Jersey Army National Guard officer collected intelligence on enemy activities, then planned combat ground operations that resulted in a half-dozen kills and more than 30 arrests, including that of Gul's nephew.
January 24, 2014
THE WORLD has very little time - perhaps 15 years - to make serious inroads on climate change, according to a leaked report from a U.N. panel. Current efforts, even among the most committed nations, fall short, and at the current rate of carbon emissions, the problem might grow too large to overcome with existing technology. Yet the recalcitrance and myth-making about global warming continue - and become more prevalent - in the United States. Last week, Senate Minority Leader Mitch McConnell moved to employ a little-known law to try to halt a key part of the Obama administration's climate plan.
December 28, 2013
Owls as canaries The story "N.J.'s 'Crazy Year' for Owls" (Sunday) was interesting and disturbing. It focused on a rare incursion into New Jersey of snowy owls, arctic birds hardly ever seen this far south, and considered why it might be taking place. While there are no conclusive answers - there is either too much or too little food for the owls in the Arctic - the story notes other recent anomalies in animal migration patterns, including those of wildebeests in East Africa, right whales off the Maine and Nova Scotia coasts, and monarch butterflies in Mexico.
December 16, 2013
Maybe science belongs on Pennsylvania's endangered species list. Some political leaders are already acting as if science is irrelevant. Gov. Corbett has named a former prosecutor who admits to a lack of scientific curiosity to be his environmental secretary. Pennsylvania was late to join efforts to reduce the pollution blowing into Northeastern states from the west. And the legislature is ignoring science in trying to remove animals from the endangered list. Corbett's new environmental secretary, E. Christopher Abruzzo, turned heads during recent confirmation hearings when he downplayed climate change and the role government should play in mitigating its effects.
December 12, 2013 |
HARRISBURG The state Senate on Tuesday overwhelmingly approved Gov. Corbett's nominee as the state's new environmental chief despite concerns raised over his statements about climate change. By a vote of 42-8 the Senate voted to confirm Christopher Abruzzo as secretary of the Department of Environmental Protection. Abruzzo, Corbett's former deputy chief of staff and a former prosecutor in the Attorney General's Office, had served as acting DEP secretary since the departure of Michael Krancer in March.
November 30, 2013 |
One in a series of occasional articles about the regional effects of climate change and how we're coping. Deep inside the massive steel tank, the light glowed eerily from the freshly painted surface. The voices of visitors who had slithered through a narrow portal echoed. The soon-to-be refilled vessel, rising from a Limerick Township field, is more than 30 feet high and 75 feet across. It holds a million gallons of drinking water, enough to cover a football field to a depth of four feet.
November 15, 2013
EARLIER THIS week in Poland, the United Nations opened its 19th Framework Convention on Climate Change. Given the unimaginable devastation wrought on his country three days earlier by Typhoon Haiyan, the remarks of the delegate from the Philippines had a special resonance. "To anyone who continues to deny the reality that is climate change, I dare you to get off your ivory tower and away from the comfort of your armchair," said Naderev "Yeb" Sano. "I dare you to go to the islands of the Pacific, the islands of the Caribbean and the islands of the Indian Ocean and see the impacts of rising sea levels; to the mountainous regions of the Himalayas and the Andes to see communities confronting glacial floods, to the Arctic, where communities grapple with the fast dwindling polar ice caps . . . " That this was the 19th such annual event, and it's still about the "framework" of an agreement, suggests that Sano should not hold his breath.
October 26, 2013 |
Give the lawn at least one more mow. Unless the weather warms up again, figure your lawn will soon stop growing for the season. Mowing over the first layer of fallen leaves, saves a bit of raking and provides your lawn with a good source of nutrients. Plant a tree. It's a great time of year to plant trees, whether on your own property or in a community-wide project. You can be part of Plant One Million with PHS and its partners, which encourages folks to plant trees as a way to moderate the effects of climate change and prevent storm water flooding.
October 9, 2013 |
A newly formed nonprofit, nonpartisan group seeking to jump-start efforts to address the effects of climate change is calling for a dedicated federal fund to prepare for extreme weather patterns. The group, US Strong, in a report Monday, put the price tag of Hurricane Sandy at more than $70 billion, with half of the damage sustained in New Jersey. New York suffered most of the rest of the damage. In its 31-page report, "Extreme Weather, Extreme Costs: The True Financial Impact of Superstorm Sandy," the group concludes that uncompensated losses for residents and businesses in New Jersey likely would far exceed current estimates of $8 billion to $13 billion.