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Thursday, August 31, 2017

VIDEO: Dear Trump Voter

You didn’t get the change you were promised

To watch this video directly on YouTube:

If you voted for Donald Trump, I get it. Maybe you feel you’ve been so badly shafted by the system that you didn’t want to go back to politics as usual, and Trump seemed like he’d topple that corrupt system. 

You voted to change our country’s power base – to get rid of crony capitalism and give our government back to the people who are working, paying taxes, and spending more just to survive. Lots of Americans agree with you. 

But now, the president is turning his back on that idea and the many changes he promised.

Both sides responsible

For more cartoons by Matt Bors, CLICK HERE.

Trump's August report card

Pic of the Moment

New England Seamount national monument still under threat from Trump

Deep-sea canyons, which can plunge to depths greater than 7,000 feet, and seamounts, which rise thousands of feet above the sea floor, create habitats that are home to corals, fish, marine mammals and turtles. (CLF/NRDC)
Deep-sea canyons, which can plunge to depths greater than 7,000 feet, and seamounts, which rise thousands of feet above the sea floor, create habitats that are home to corals, fish, marine mammals and turtles. (CLF/NRDC)

By ecoRI News staff

If Interior Secretary Ryan Zinke’s recommendations to eliminate parts of existing national monuments are accepted by President Trump, some of the country’s pristine lands and waters will lose protection from timbering, mining, drilling and overfishing — a move that could lead to the destruction of treasured lands and marine ecosystems.

Such a move also would defy public opinion. Ninety-eight percent of the record-breaking 2.8 million public comments to the Interior Department asked the federal government to maintain or expand areas under protection.

The Northeast Canyons and Seamounts Marine National Monument, off the coasts of Massachusetts and Rhode Island, remains on the list of monuments under review by the Trump administration. 

The monument’s steep canyons and ancient volcanoes are home to a rich array of undersea life, including 73 species of coral. The area also provides critical habitat for many species of dolphins and endangered whales.

Without the protection of the Antiquities Act, this undisturbed underwater ecosystem would once again be exposed to threats from commercial fishing and fossil-fuel extraction, according to Environment America.

Calling local thespians, starting September 5

URI Theatre department casting for ‘Eurydice,’ ‘Lady Windermere’s Fan’
Image result for EurydiceThe University of Rhode Island Theatre Department is calling for actors to audition for its fall 2017 productions of “Eurydice” and “Lady Windermere’s Fan.” The auditions are open to the public. 

To register, call the URI Theatre Department at (401) 874-5921 or visit the theatre office on the second floor of the Fine Arts Center, 105 Upper College Road, Kingston.


“Eurydice,” written by Sarah Ruhl, explores the mythological Greek story of Orpheus and his wife, Eurydice. Told through Eurydice’s unique perspective, the audience experiences her life in the “overworld,” her tragic descent to the underworld, and the challenges, beauties and questions that both worlds provide.

The Theatre Department seeks seven actors, with auditions to be held in J Studio of the Fine Arts Center on Sept. 5, from 7 to 10:30 p.m. for juniors and seniors and Sept. 6, from 7 to 10:30 p.m. for all others. Call backs will be held in J Studio on Sept. 7, from 7 to 10 p.m. The first read-through will be held Sept. 9, at 12:30 p.m.

Is nothing sacred?

Time To Reset Your Preset
By Beth Comery in the Providence Daily Dose
Related image
The end of an era. 

The Brown University radio station WBRU-FM 95.5 will soon be selling its signal and transferring its license to the Educational Media Foundation (EMF). 

WBRU has been broadcasting progressive →album →college →indie →generic modern rock since 1966. 

According to WPRI News:
On its website, EMF describes its mission as to “create compelling media that inspires and encourages you to have a meaningful relationship with Christ.”

Wednesday, August 30, 2017

Is wood burning “green energy?”

By TIM FAULKNER/ecoRI News staff

 fireplace GIF
A roaring fire in the fireplace is nice, but is wood-burning green energy?
EDITOR’S NOTE: Charlestown residents have until September 8 to sign up for “Solarize Charlestown,” a group purchase of residential solar energy panels available through the town at a discount. This may also be the last year that you can also get a significant tax credit on your federal taxes for investing in green energy for your home. Contact Charlestown’s contractor, SOL Power, at 401-680-0765. Stick it back to National Grid by not only using less electricity, but also selling energy back to National Grid when you generate more than you can use.

Rhode Island still has plenty of high-carbon-emitting wood in its renewable-energy portfolio. According to a recent report, 34 percent of the "renewable" electricity in the state’s electric grid comes from power plants that burn wood, often from virgin forest.

Critics of biomass power note studies showing that burning wood releases more carbon dioxide than coal, natural gas and oil. In addition to destroying natural habitat, the wood-fuel industry burns mature trees, one of the best sources for sequestering carbon dioxide.

Not your fault

For more cartoons by Mike Luckovich, CLICK HERE.

Harvey's second landfall

Louisiana Environmental Action Network, Protecting Louisiana's Environment for Future Generations

U.S. Energy Infrastructure Administration(EIA)
Warnings as a Result of Hurricane Harvey Coming on Shore in Texas and Southwest Louisiana 

As the hurricane force winds and torrential rainfall associated with Hurricane Harvey negatively impacted the coastal areas of Texas and southwest Louisiana, toxic chemicals and bacteria present in the impacted areas were released into the environment and contaminated the rain water/flood water as it accumulated in cities, towns and rural areas. Contaminated flood waters contaminated rivers, bayous, creeks and impounded areas, soils and sediments, and homes and businesses. Chemical were also released into the water and air from a host of small businesses, agricultural facilities, industrial facilities and petrochemical facilities. 

Sewer Systems

Sewer systems serving individual homes and  businesses, industrial facilities, subdivisions, towns and cities were inundated by excessive rainfall. Untreated sewage overflowed out of the treatment systems and contaminated the rainwater, storm water  and surface water bodies with bacteria and sewage nutrient compounds. People coming in contact with the sewage contaminated floodwaters could have been contaminated with the bacteria and chemicals and could develop bacterial infections and chemical related health impacts.

Household Chemicals 

Cleaning  chemicals stored in households and  chemicals stored in garages and sheds (gasoline, diesel, lubricants, pesticides and herbicides) were released into the floodwaters when homes were flooded. These chemicals dispersed in the flood waters have exposed individuals, who waded through and were rescued from standing flood waters, to a host of chemicals associated with a large number of acute health impacts.

Chemicals Used and Sold by Businesses

Chemicals used and  chemicals manufactured in the area Impacted by Hurricane Harvey and sold by small businesses, wholesalers, grocery stores, building supply businesses, Walmart  type stores, agricultural supply facilities, etc. were released into the flood waters and the air in the areas impacted by Hurricane Harvey. The chemicals consist of a broad range of very toxic chemicals that cause severe and long lasting health impacts to those individuals who come in contact with the chemicals and the chemicals contained in the flood water.

Chemicals Used and  Manufactured in the Area Impacted by Hurricane Harvey

Chemicals manufactured by and used in the manufacturing process by small and medium size chemical  manufacturing facilities, petroleum refineries and chemical plants in the Hurricane Harvey impacted area in Texas and Louisiana released large quantities of very toxic chemicals into the air and water. The chemicals were released into the environment as the result of leaks, spills, releases from storage tanks and process vessels  and flaring into the air to prevent damage  to processes. In addition larger quantities of chemicals in containers were also swept away into the environment as a result of tidal surges. During Hurricane Katrina more than 6,000 vessels, drums, containers, tanks, etc. were released into the environment as  a result of tidal surges and wind damage.

The chemicals released into the environment by Hurricane Harvey from these facilities contaminated  surface water, sediments, soils, vegetation, and individuals who  came in contact with the contaminated floodwaters and containers with chemical contents. 

Useful Information from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention

Support Our Work Today!

URI tackles origins of the universe, life on earth and potential for life on other worlds

10-lecture series, ‘Origins: Life, the Universe and Everything’ starts Sept. 12
Image result for evolution of the universeHakeem Oluseyi has gone through his own amazing evolution, from a gun-carrying teen to an astrophysicist at NASA who co-hosts two TV shows and who appears regularly on CNN, NBC, MSNBC and Fox News.

When he visits the University of Rhode Island Tuesday, Sept. 12, at 7 p.m., he’ll talk about the even more astonishing and mysterious evolution of the universe in his lecture,  “The Birth of Being: From the Big Bang to Babies.”

Oluseyi will lead off the University’s Honors Colloquium, its premier free, public lecture series, “Origins: Life, the Universe and Everything.” All 10 lectures start at 7 p.m. and all but one will be held in Edwards Hall, 64 Upper College Road.  

Tickets are no longer available for the second lecture on Sept. 19 with Jane Goodall at the Ryan Center.

Trump uses Harvey to hawk new hats


One in twelve doctors accepts payment from pharmaceutical companies related to opioids
Boston University Medical Center

Related imageOne in twelve physicians -- and nearly one in five family medicine physicians -- accepted payments from pharmaceutical companies related to opioids, according to a new study out of Boston Medical Center's Grayken Center for Addiction Medicine. 

This is the first large-scale, national study of industry payments involving opioids and suggests that pharmaceutical companies may have a stronger hold than previously known on how doctors prescribe the powerful drugs. The study results are published online ahead of print in the American Journal of Public Health.

Russian hackers shift to support neo-Nazis

Pro-Russian Bots Take Up the Right-Wing Cause After Charlottesville
By Isaac Arnsdorf for ProPublica

Image result for russian botsAngee Dixson joined Twitter on Aug. 8 and immediately began posting furiously — about 90 times a day. 

A self-described American Christian conservative, Dixson defended President Donald Trump's response to the unrest in Charlottesville, criticized the removal of Confederate monuments and posted pictures purporting to show violence by left-wing counterprotesters.

"Dems and Media Continue to IGNORE BLM and Antifa Violence in Charlottesville," she wrote above a picture of masked demonstrators labeled "DEMOCRAT TERROR."

But Dixson appears to have been a fake, according to an analysis by Ben Nimmo, a fellow with the Digital Forensic Research Lab at the Atlantic Council think tank. The account has been shut down. Dixson's profile picture was stolen from a young Instagram celebrity (a German model rumored to have dated Leonardo DiCaprio). 

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

St. Donald the Martyr

Apoplectic in Arizona

Blame the press. Blame President Obama. Insist down is up and up is down. Create an alternate reality. Gaslight. Gaslight. Gaslight. 

Misquote yourself. Leave out the words that outraged a majority of a nation.

The speech that President Trump gave in Arizona was not the teleprompter-confined President of the speech on Afghanistan.

He was the martyr to an unfair witch hunt. His words after Charlottesville were in reality healing - if the press would just tell the truth. 

He was misquoted and taken out of context. He has drawn the battle lines to divide a nation between his "us" and the "them" of the others. And he basks in the swagger.

Never mind all the critics outside of the press, the CEOs, the GOP officials who have questioned his mental stability, and the global condemnation.

Confederate statues - pros and cons

For more cartoons by Mike Luckovich, CLICK HERE.

At the Mystic Aquarium

Mystic Aquarium

Upcoming Events

Heroes Week

We're celebrating all police, fire and emergency medical service personnel with FREE admission.


Take your photo with animal rescuer Diego, meet our Animal Rescue Team and make a backpack!

Estuaries Day

Celebrate our local estuary with activities at the Aquarium on Sat. and a beach clean-up on Sun.

Pizza with Penguins

Meet an African penguin at our great event featuring a pizza buffet and beverage bar.

Pancakes with Penguins

Join us for a delicious breakfast buffet and meet an African penguin. Make your reservations today!

Penguin Run

Run, walk or donate, no matter what you do, you can help the endangered African penguin!

Mystic Aquarium| 55 Coogan Blvd, Mystic, CT | 860.572.5955

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How the work of science is done

Investigating the Enigma of Clouds and Climate Change
BY DIANE TOOMEY •Yale Environment 360 

Image result for kate marvelClouds perform an important function in cooling the planet as they reflect solar energy back into space. Yet clouds also intensify warming by trapping the planet’s heat and radiating it back to earth. 

As fossil fuel emissions continue to warm the planet, how will this dual role played by clouds change, and will clouds ultimately exacerbate or moderate global warming?

Kate Marvel, a physicist at Columbia University and a researcher at NASA’s Goddard Institute for Space Studies, is investigating the mysteries of clouds and climate change. 

And while she and her colleagues would like to offer definitive answers on this subject, the fact is that few now exist. 

In an interview with Yale Environment 360, Marvel discusses what is known about the behavior of clouds in a warming world (they are migrating more toward the poles), explains why strict controls need to be imposed on geoengineering experiments with clouds, and talks about why she is confident that science and human ingenuity will ultimately overcome the challenge of climate change.

“The fact that we understand how the planet actually works and we keep continuing to ask these questions — that makes me optimistic about the future of our species,” says Marvel.

Dog of the Week

Meet Dots. 
Animal Rescue RI 

Dots is a happy go lucky guy who makes us smile.

He is up for rides, frisbee or belly rubs.

He LOVES other dogs and is really hoping for a canine companion.

No dog? You can be his best friend too!

If you enjoy long walks on the beach, agility or anything adventurous then Dots is the perfect match for you! 

Poll Shows Trump Is Accomplishing One Thing: Making America Hate Again

Most Americans think Trump has intentionally encouraged white supremacist groups
Image may contain: 1 personA new poll by Quinnipiac University reveals that a growing number of Americans think President Donald Trump has contributed to a more hateful atmosphere in the U.S., and many think he's deliberately encouraged hate groups.

Nearly two-thirds of Americans said they believe that the level of hatred and prejudice have gone up since President Donald Trump entered office in January.

Researchers polled 1,514 voters across the nation between August 17 and 22. 

The data was collected on the heels of widespread criticism of Trump's refusal to unequivocally condemn this month's white supremacist gathering in Charlottesville, Virginia, and just before Trump suggested he would pardon former sheriff Joe Arpaio in an off-script tirade in Phoenix, Arizona on last Tuesday.

Arpaio, a longtime Trump supporter, was convicted last month of failing to obey a judge's order to end his practice of racially profiling Latinos in Maricopa County, Arizona; the ACLU called Trump's hint at pardoning him "an official endorsement of racism."