Overcrowding, Scarcity, and War

As Edward Hall explains in The Hidden Dimension, all animals react the same way in response to stress caused by overcrowding and scarcity. The first-stage reaction is to test the boundaries of the community, to see whether it can expand and take over more land to relieve the pressure. If that is unsuccessful, the second-stage reaction is a form of shock, fueled by an overload of secreted adrenaline that produces hyperactivity, depression, distraction, and metabolic instability, which lead in turn to higher rates of spontaneous abortion, lower fertility, and more suicides. If even this is insufficient to reduce numbers and alleviate overcrowding and scarcity, the third-stage reaction is a form of madness: war, violent and unprovoked aggression, mass suicide, and the eating of the young. This ‘last resort’ ensures that no species can seriously disrupt the ecological balance of life long enough or severely enough to produce an ecological crash. It’s the self-regulating process that has worked well since the first living creatures appeared on the planet three billion years ago.

Is the human species entering this third-stage state of reaction?

via How to Save the World

America’s Dirtiest Power Plants: Plugged into the Bush Administration

America’s Dirtiest Power Plants: Plugged into the Bush Administration ranks the top 50 polluting power plants for three pollutants: sulfur dioxide, carbon dioxide, and mercury. While these top polluters represent only a fraction of their industry, they account for far more than their share of pollution.

Environmental Integrity Prjoject • 919 18th Street, NW, Suite 975, Washington, DC 20006

Link: America’s Dirtiest Power Plants

Campaign Contributions and Fundraisers

Since 1999, the 30 biggest utility companies that own plants on the three “Dirtiest” lists have poured $6.6 million into the coffers of the Bush presidential campaigns and the Republican National Committee (RNC), whose chief mission is to elect the party’s presidential nominee. This level of contributions places electric utilities among the industries that have given the most to support Bush’s campaigns – comparable to such major givers as drug manufacturers and HMOs. The electric utilities and their trade associatio n, the Edison Electric Institute (EEI), have produced 10 “Rangers” and “Pioneers,” the Bush campaign’s super- fundraisers who collect at least $200,000 or $100,000, respectively, in earmarked contributions.

These Rangers and Pioneers, despite being limited by law to maximum individual donations of $2,000, raised at least $1.5 million using the Bush campaign’s sophisticated “bundling” system – by which corporate executives, lobbyists and other insiders pool together large numbers of contributions to maximize their political influence. The contributions are credited to the bundlers using tracking numbers assigned to them by the campaign. So far in the 2004 election cycle, the campaign has recruited two Rangers and five Pioneers from the electric utility industry, compared with six Pioneers in 2000 (when there was no Ranger category).

Alternate Sources of Energy: Wind with Hydrogen

Norwegian island being used to test clean energy system
AP WorldStream via COMTEX
NewsTeam | CBS [MarketWatch] | POSTED: 04.27.04 @08:52
OSLO, Norway, Apr 27, 2004 — Wind power and other alternatives to fossil and nuclear fuels have one major drawback – they depend on nature to generate electricity.

A Norwegian company, Norsk Hydro ASA, presented a project Tuesday to overcome the problem of storing electricity when the wind dies, the sea calms, or the sun doesn’t shine

It built two 600-kilowatt wind turbines and connected them with a hydrogen generator and a fuel cell to provide electricity for 10 homes on Utsira, a tiny town of 240 people on a wind-swept island about 18 kilometers (11 miles) from the mainland. Utsira is 320 kilometers (200 miles) west of Oslo.

When it’s very windy, not unusual for Utsira, the wind turbines will produce excess power to produce hydrogen fuel in a process known as electrolysis – which splits water into hydrogen and oxygen.

That fuel will in turn power a hydrogen combustion engine and a fuel cell to generate electricity when the wind is not blowing.