Category Archives: business

Walmart Takes Your Tax Dollars So It Can Pay Its Workers Low Low Wages

Ever wonder how Walmart makes so much money? They pay their workers so little that they are forced to get on food stamps (which your tax dollars pay for), so next time you think you are getting a deal by shopping at Walmart remember that what you are really doing is paying for those savings in some other way.

 

The combined worth of the 6 Walmart heirs and heiresses is greater than that of the bottom 41% of American families (48.8 million households). How do the grinning kids of Sam Walton stay so rich? By paying their employees slave wages and not providing benefits, forcing them to use food stamps and medicaid. Above, a poster by Miel Macassey that shows how Walmart siphons money from taxpayers so it can pay its workers (which represent 1% of the American workforce) an average of $8.81 an hour without having them and their kids drop dead of starvation.(via)

350.org Does The Math

I attended the Do The Math tour last night put on by Bill McKibben

Bill McKibben describes the simple math of global warming:

If we want to avoid a climate catastrophe we need to keep our warming below a 2 degree Celsius rise.

To avoid that we will need to keep the amount of carbon below 565 gigatons of CO2

Current proven reserves of oil/gas/coal are 2795 gigatons of CO2. Five times more than we will need to doom us to runaway global warming.

These companies will dig up and burn that carbon, its how they make money. They should no longer be considered companies, and be reclassified as radical enemies of humanity.

So what do we do with these companies? We go after the only thing they care about.

We need to make schools, colleges, pensions, unions, etc to divest from these companies. We can no longer offer these companies a profit for destroying our earth.

If you are a college who invests in Exxon, what is the point of educating your students if there will not be a viable climate for them to use that education in. If you are a pension fund manager what is the point of investing in Shell if there is no future for your pensioners to use their retirement in.

And if all that wasn’t enough Bill explained it all in a metaphor we can all understand Beer.

Learn how you can get your institutions to divest from these big carbon companies at GoFossilFree.org

Cape Wind Leases Might Be Granted By 2013

Via HuffPo

A vast expanse of ocean south of Martha’s Vineyard and Nantucket could be leased for offshore wind energy by the end of 2013, according to a timeline laid out by federal officials Tuesday.

“We’re going to shoot to have that lease sale in that fall time period,” Maureen Bornholdt, renewable energy program manager for the U.S. Interior Department’s Bureau of Ocean Energy Management, said during a public meeting in Boston.

The estimated time frame for leasing means that selected wind energy developers would have until about the end of 2018 to submit construction and operations plans and potentially an additional 20 years to produce wind energy from the leased areas, Bornholdt said. The leasing plan does not affect Cape Wind, the proposed Nantucket Sound wind farm, which has already been awarded a lease by the federal government.

For Massachusetts, which under Gov. Deval Patrick set an aggressive goal of having 2,000 megawatts of wind energy — most coming from offshore — by 2020, the timing of the leasing process is a potential, if necessary, setback.

“It’s hard to speculate whether this will impact our goals,” Massachusetts Executive Office of Energy and Environmental Affairs spokeswoman Krista Selmi said after Tuesday’s meeting.

Wind Turbines Survive Super Storm Sandy

Good to see that modern wind turbines can survive even very violent storms. We will need designs like this as extreme weather becomes a more common event.

Read the entire story here.

 

The clean-up is in full swing on the east coast as a result of hurricane Sandy. The majority of people who lost power during the storm have had their electricity restored. Yet is there a better way to keep the lights on during a major weather event? Wind power might just be the answer. Several wind energy companies have said that their turbines, directly in the path of the hurricane remained operational and undamaged.

Northern Power Systems said 74 of its wind turbines remained standing, undamaged and performed safely. The turbines were designed that when each turbine detected high force winds, it automatically entered safe mode. When conditions returned to normal, each turbine began generating electricity again.

“The losses experienced from Hurricane Sandy are a tragic reminder of how powerful nature can be,” said Troy Patton, Northern Power Systems president and CEO. “Many of our turbines, from the Caribbean to the eastern seaboard of the US, were directly in the path of Hurricane Sandy, but none were damaged by the high winds. At Northern Power Systems, we have the experience and commitment to continue to make products that are safe and reliable.”

Cape Wind Moves Forward Considers Rhode Island For Staging Area

As the Boston Globe reports:

Governor Lincoln Chafee of Rhode Island has met with officials of the Cape Wind offshore wind project planned for Massachusetts about possibly using Rhode Island ports as the wind farm’s construction-staging area, instead of New Bedford. A project spokesman said Friday that it is an open question whether a terminal planned for New Bedford could be ready in time to use when needed for the project. Chafee spokeswoman Christine Hunsinger said Cape Wind has been assessing the capabilities of the state’s ports at Quonset in North Kingstown and in Providence. Mayor Jon Mitchell of New Bedford said Cape Wind had expressed concerns to the city about the timetable, but said the state is insistent that the terminal will be completed in time for all the work to be done in New Bedford.