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Tuesday, October 20, 2020

Ending an abusive relationship

By Mike LuckovichAtlanta Journal-Constitution


Worm Ladies of Charlestown Need Worms!





The Worm Ladies Need Worms






 This summer has been an unusual summer.  There has been more interest in vermicomposting than in past years, which has been very exciting, but challenging!  Our worm populations were exhausted very quickly.  Some of our customers have sold us their surplus worms, which we went through very quickly.  We need your surplus worms if you are willing to sell them to us (We pay between $10--$15 per pound depending on how much sorting needs to be done.)








The Worm Ladies Are Planning To Begin An Incubator Program To Offer You Help With Starting Your Own Worm Farm Or To Expand The One You Have






This program will follow Covid regulations at the North Kingstown location.

Our equipment including worm bins, harvesters, brewers etc. will be available to participants for a set amount of time (your choice.) There will be fees associated with the amount of space and the length of time you will be at the "Farm."  Workshops are included--you may attend them or you may be interested in teaching the workshops.

Anyone interested in setting up this incubator program is welcome to participate.

This incubator program will include any of the following:





Worm farm setup with a choice of the worm farms at the FARM...

Use of the harvester by appointment...2 sizes, 1/8 inch and 1/4 inch...

Use of the brewers (small and large or one of your own making)...

Farmers Markets...

Educational Workshops, Schools, Offices, Garden Clubs, Organizational Events...

Use of The Worm Ladies website...

Use of Quickbook account...

Use of equipment such as a projector, screen, and microscope...

Power Point presentations...

Videos made by members for use at Workshops...

Use of display stands...

"Worms, Castings, Brews" Library...

Sharing on Social Media...

Press Releases featuring events and products...

Assistance with setting up a business...

Assisance with taxes...

Ordering products wholesale...

Inclusion in The Worm Ladies Newsletter...

and more as we think about our needs...






The Worm Ladies of Charlestown, Inc. is an S Corporation with available stock.  The trademarks have just been renewed.  Nancy Warner, one of the creators of The Worm Ladies, would like to retire but remain a stockholder.







The Worm Ladies location at 251 Exeter Road is behind the front buildings in the hoop house 4W (Left hand side.)






email address:

phone numbers:  Cell:  401-742-5915;  Home:  401-322-7675

251 Exeter Road, North Kingstown, 02852


October 27 virtual discussion on energy from the ocean

Mystic Aquarium displaying cutting edge ocean energy technologies 

Dale Wolbrink

As communities around the world turn toward alternative energy solutions, Mystic Aquarium has unveiled a newly expanded exhibit that showcases a vast, largely untapped source of renewable energy: the ocean.

From motion technology that converts the movement of waves, currents and tides into electricity, to offshore turbines that harness the power of wind and transfer that energy through underwater cables to power homes and businesses, Renewable Ocean Energy highlights the incredible potential of the ocean to sustainably meet our energy needs and address pressing climate concerns, while safeguarding ocean ecosystems. 

The display spans 400 square feet on the mezzanine level of the Aquarium’s Main Gallery and features interactive mechanical models that allow visitors, with safety protocols in place, to manipulate underwater surge flaps and crank wind turbines, simulating the process of renewable power generation. 

Interpretative infographics and a large projection screen at the center of the exhibit explain the incredible capabilities of seven different marine energy technologies.

Guests can learn about a diverse group of scientists and engineers, play games, and test their renewable energy knowledge at informational kiosks. 

How climate change will affect health in Connecticut (and here, too)

New YSPH Report Raises Concerns About Climate Change and Health in Connecticut

By Michael Greenwood

The Yale School of Public Health’s Center on Climate Change and Health released a new report on changing conditions in Connecticut that, left untreated, could have serious long-term health consequences for the state’s nearly 3.5 millions residents.

The 100-page report tracks 19 indicators grouped into four categories—temperature, extreme events, infectious diseases and air quality—that were developed using publicly available data.

“We found disturbing trends in all categories,” said the report’s lead author, Laura Bozzi, Ph.D., the center’s director of programs. “This report provides policymakers, health professionals, advocates and the general public with the information they need to take timely action to protect public health.”

Among the report’s key findings:

COVID often causes brain damage

COVID-19 frequently causes neurological injuries

NYU Langone Health / NYU School of Medicine

Without directly invading the brain or nerves, the virus responsible for COVID-19 causes potentially damaging neurological injuries in about one in seven infected, a new study shows. 

These injuries range from temporary confusion due to low body-oxygen levels, to stroke and seizures in the most serious cases, say the study authors.

Led by researchers at NYU Grossman School of Medicine, the study showed no cases of brain or nerve inflammation (meningitis or encephalitis), indicating no immediate invasion of these organs by the pandemic virus, SARS-CoV-2.

While this should reassure patients, the neurological complications of COVID-19 should be taken seriously because they dramatically raise a patient's risk of dying while still in hospital (by 38 percent), researchers say. 

Such adverse effects also raise a coronavirus patient's likelihood (by 28 percent) of needing long-term or rehabilitation therapy immediately after their stay in hospital.

Monday, October 19, 2020

COVID denial is a lot like climate change denial

Political leaders' attitudes toward COVID-19 risk are highly infectious in a polarized nation – just like climate change denial

Wanyun ShaoUniversity of Alabama

President Trump’s messages discounting mask-wearing have worried public health professionals. AP Photos/Alex Brandon

When President Donald Trump announced he was leaving the hospital after being treated for COVID-19, he sent his supporters a message: “Don’t be afraid of COVID. Don’t let it dominate your life,” he tweeted. A few hours later at the White House, he pulled off his mask in dramatic fashion for the cameras and stuffed it in his pocket.

That message on Oct. 5 and his subsequent words and actions – including telling supporters at a Florida campaign rally on Oct. 12, “if you want to get out there, get out there,” and that he and wanted to kiss everyone in the tightly packed audience – flew in the face of health professionals’ warnings.

Over 215,000 people have died from COVID-19 in the U.S., and the country faces a high risk of a surge in cases this fall. Wearing face masks and social distancing can help stop the virus’s spread.

Coming from a political leader, Trump’s words and behaviors downplaying the risks are potent. My research as a professor who studies risk perception shows that in a highly polarized environment, political leaders’ rhetoric can play a significant role in shaping risk perceptions among their loyal followers.

If the leader deems the risk to be small, his or her supporters will be more likely to share that view. If the leader does not strictly follow rules on wearing masks and social distancing, the supporters are more than likely to follow suit.

This pattern has been confirmed in recent months by evidence that U.S. counties with more Trump voters see fewer people social distancing. It also echoes what I and other researchers have found with the politicization of climate change.

Life in the stupidverse

For more cartoons by Tom Tomorrow, CLICK HERE.


Biden loves latest Trump "insult"


Are your pets going hungry?

Animal Rescue RI is here for pet owners

Liz Skrobisch, Executive Director of Animal Rescue Rhode Island

Animal Rescue RI (ARRI) in South Kingstown is reaching out to help area pet owners in need of food or supplies for their pets.  

ARRI’s Pet Pantry distributes pet food both directly to pet owners at the shelter and via the Jonnycake Center, and our program works to identify those in need through Meals on Wheels and other social service agencies.

Proving that collaboration can magnify the good we’re doing, recently the Wakefield Rotary Club partnered with Critter Hut, a long-time champion of our shelter, and together they donated more than 450 pounds of dog food! 

Feline friendly?

How to build rap-paw* with your cat

University of Sussex

A team of psychologists at the Universities of Sussex and Portsmouth have purr-fected* the art of building a bond with cats.

The new study 'The role of cat eye narrowing movements in cat-human communication', published online in the Nature journal Scientific Reports, has shown for the first time that it is possible to build rapport with a cat by using an eye narrowing technique with them. 

This eye narrowing action by humans generates something popularly known as a cat smile -- the so called "slow blink" -- and seems to make the human more attractive to the cat. 

Eye narrowing movements in cats have some parallels with the genuine smile in humans (the Duchenne smile), as well as eye narrowing movements given in positive situations in some other species.

The team, led by Dr Tasmin Humphrey and Professor Karen McComb, animal behaviour scientists at the University of Sussex, undertook two experiments. 

The first revealed that cats are more likely to slow blink at their owners after their owners have slow blinked at them, compared to when they don't interact at all. 

The second experiment, this time with a researcher from the psychology team, rather than the owner, found that the cats were more likely to approach the experimenter's outstretched hand after they'd slow blinked at the cat, compared to when they had adopted a neutral expression. 

Taken together, the study shows that this slow blinking technique can provide a form of positive communication between cats and humans.

* EDITOR'S NOTE: I did not come up with the bad pun in the sub-heading and text. Out of respect for our British colleagues, I left their original title in. I also did not change their odd way of spelling some words such as "behaviour."  - W. Collette

As COVID-19 cases rise again, how will the US respond?

Here's what states have learned so far

Tiffany A. RadcliffTexas A&M University and Murray J. CôtéTexas A&M University

States have tried shutting down bars and limiting restaurants to outdoor seating to slow the coronavirus’s spread. Sandy Huffaker/Getty Images

When the coronavirus began spreading in the U.S. in early spring, governors in hard-hit states took drastic steps to reduce the threat and avoid overloading their health care systems. 

By shutting down nonessential businesses and schools and ordering people to stay home, they slowed the virus’s spread, but several million people lost jobs.

Since then, we’ve witnessed a series of ad hoc experiments with more targeted approaches. As states started to reopen, they tested different levels of restrictions, such as face mask mandates and capacity constraints on restaurants. 

Some closed bars when cases rose again but left other businesses open. Others set restrictions that would be triggered only for hot spots when a county’s positive case numbers passed a certain threshold.

Now, as cooler weather moves more people indoors and daily case numbers rise, states and communities are looking to those successes and failures as they consider what future strategies should look like. Could more targeted closures and restrictions be effective, or will a return to statewide stay-at-home orders be needed again?

As public health researchers, we’ve been following the strategies as they evolve, and we see lessons those experiments hold for the country.

Sunday, October 18, 2020

What's wrong with militias?

Militia movement's toxic mix of constitutional falsehoods and half-truths leads to violence

John E. FinnWesleyan University

Pete Musico, left, is one of the founding members of the Wolverine Watchmen, as is Joseph Morrison, right. Both were charged in the plot to kidnap Michigan Gov. Gretchen Whitmer. (Jackson County Sheriff’s Office via AP) Jackson County Sheriff’s Office via AP

The U.S. militia movement has long been steeped in a peculiar – and unquestionably mistaken – interpretation of the Constitution, the Bill of Rights and civil liberties.

This is true of an armed militia group that calls itself the Wolverine Watchmen, who were involved in the recently revealed plot to overthrow Michigan’s government and kidnap Gov. Gretchen Whitmer.

As I wrote in “Fracturing the Founding: How the Alt-Right Corrupts the Constitution,” published in 2019, the crux of the militia movement’s devotion to what I have called the “alt-right constitution” is a toxic mix of constitutional falsehoods and half-truths.

EDITOR'S NOTE: Three southern Rhode Island legislators are open supporters of militia groups: Charlestown Rep. Blake "Flip" Filippi, Rep. Justin Price (R-Richmond) and state Senator Elaine Morgan (R-Hopkinton). Flip has represented militiamen in court and spoken at their rallies. - Will Collette


By Nick Anderson


VIDEO: American family


How the next president can curb climate change

Report issues climate-action recommendations for next U.S. president

By Kathryn Dunkelman, Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs

A report issued by Brown University’s Climate Solutions Lab urges federal leaders to move climate change to the top of their domestic and foreign policy agendas in 2021.

The comprehensive report, “Presidential Climate Action on Day One: A Foreign Policy Guide for the Next U.S. President,” issued a sweeping set of recommended actions, both domestic and international, to address the impacts of climate change — from prohibiting federal spending on new fossil fuel infrastructure to working toward decarbonizing the aviation and shipping industries.

The report was released on Thursday, Oct. 8, by the Climate Solutions Lab at Brown’s Watson Institute for International and Public Affairs. The lab was established in 2020 as part of a University-wide Climate Solutions Initiative aimed at confronting climate inaction at the campus, city, state and global levels.

To protect nature's benefits, focus on people

Consider people's needs when making environmental policy

Stanford University - Natural Capital Project

To calculate the true value of a forest, we need to know how people benefit from it, according to new research published in Nature Sustainability

A healthy forest holds a treasure trove of benefits for people -- it can filter water for downstream communities, supply timber for building, and provide a place for people to connect with nature. 

But a forest -- or any other ecosystem -- won't necessarily provide the same things to everyone.

"Context matters," says Lisa Mandle, lead scientist at the Stanford Natural Capital Project and lead author on the paper. "If we want to protect the critical natural assets we all depend on, we need actionable policies that incorporate people's diverse needs. It shouldn't be a one-size-fits-all approach when we're talking about people and nature."

There's a growing global movement to invest in nature in order to protect vital resources and improve climate resilience. But for nature to be factored into policies, sustainable development plans, and other management decisions, the researchers say the science behind them needs to be more inclusive and people-centric.

How green is it?

Is New England’s Biggest Renewable Energy Project Really a Win for the Climate?

By Tara Lohan

Is renewable energy always sustainable — or just? Today we launch a two-part series looking at the role of Canadian hydropower in helping the U.S. Northeast meet its climate goals.

Construction could start soon on New England’s biggest renewable energy project, a 1,200-megawatt-capacity transmission line to deliver renewable energy to Massachusetts customers. 

The proposed project, New England Clean Energy Connect, has cleared most of its significant regulatory hurdles. But it hasn’t been without opposition.

Some of the fiercest challenges have come from environmental groups, who question the purported green benefits. That’s because this isn’t a wind or solar project — it’s big hydro imported from Canada. 

The power would come from a massive network of 63 hydropower stations and numerous large dams owned by Hydro-Québec, a monopoly utility run by the province. Some of this energy could travel more than 800 miles from turbine to light switch.

And in order to get the power to Massachusetts, 145 miles of new high-voltage direct current transmission line will need to run through Maine — including more than 50 miles slashed through the North Maine Woods.

The project is regionally significant but also nationally important. New England is getting serious about climate change, with all six states pledging to cut greenhouse gas emissions 80% over 1990 levels by 2050. Neighboring New York has even greater ambitions — and is similarly interested in importing Canadian hydropower.

Hydro-Québec already supplies about 17% of the electricity for New England and 5% for New York, and the company has been banking on those numbers increasing. “We’re poised to play a bigger role,” says Gary Sutherland, director of strategic affairs for northeast markets at Hydro-Québec.

NECEC would lock in a 20-year contract for Hydro-Québec and partner Central Maine Power to deliver about one-fifth of Massachusetts’s electric power needs to its utilities. But is the project worth hailing as a big step in fighting greenhouse gas emissions, or is it committing the region to decades of energy from a source that fails to live up to its environmental promise?

Saturday, October 17, 2020

VIDEO: This is not the end


Crimes and Corruption


Oct. 22 Virtual Town Hall with the Rhode Island Community Food Bank


Join Us Live for a Virtual Town Hall

Thursday, October 22, 2020
8:30 am - 9:30 am

Featuring Panelists from our Member Agencies:

Kate Brewster, Jonnycake Center for Hope
Kim Fernandez, Federal Hill House
Rilwan Feyisitan, Community Action Partnership of Providence
Heather Hole Strout, Dr. Martin Luther King Community Center



For our next Virtual Town Hall, Food Bank CEO Andrew Schiff has invited back the Executive Directors from several of our largest member agencies.

In a panel format, they'll provide us with an update on how they've been responding to the ongoing need in the community since we last spoke and discuss what's to come as we prepare for the long winter ahead. 

After registering, you will receive a confirmation email with information on how to join the meeting either online or via phone. If you have any questions in advance, please contact our Director of Communications, Hugh Minor, at or 401-230-1674.  



Pay It Forward: Support Local Restaurants and Artists in Lieu of Empty Bowls

The Food Bank's annual Empty Bowls fundraiser was scheduled for Thursday, October 22  but sadly has been canceled due to the pandemic. 

Please support the restaurants that have given back to us all these years by dining in or ordering take out. Help them weather these challenging times until we can all safely gather again for our Empty Bowls fundraiser.

On our website, you'll also find a list of artists that have contributed bowls in the past. As we head into the holiday season, please consider purchasing their handmade items as gifts. 

A special thanks to our Empty Bowls sponsors, including Presenting Sponsor Citizens Bank, for honoring their commitment to support the Food Bank.

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Copyright © 2020 Rhode Island Community Food Bank, All rights reserved.

Our mailing address is:

Rhode Island Community Food Bank

200 Niantic Ave

Providence, RI 02907-3150