Friday, September 8, 2017
With Hurricane Irma in the forefront of our collective minds, here is a modest proposal: I suggest that the people who continue to deny human-caused climate change (bless their hearts) should similarly discount the science, and the scientists, the rest of us are depending on to decide whether to board up our windows, to buy bottled water, and to put the cat in the carrier and suffer four hours of driving to Spartanburg, (serenaded…
Monday, August 28, 2017
Reading the newspaper (or the cyber newsfeed) has been especially painful these last two weeks. Charlottesville… a shooting on King Street in Charleston… a hurricane in Texas… and countless (truly) articles about the demise of the SCANA/Santee Cooper nuclear plant. No silver linings in these events…
But also, if you will bear with me, some encouraging, inspiring and beautiful stories too.
First, the nuclear plant debacle continues to unfold. There are important lessons about how to…
Tuesday, August 15, 2017
The law locks up the man or woman who steals the goose from off the common. But lets the greater felon loose, who steals the common from the goose.
Another week, another missed news summary. I have no excuse. So, I’ll try to make this one the best yet, with a laser-like focus on one big issue – infrastructure. The word is so solid and reassuring I’ll say it again. Infrastructure. …
Monday, July 31, 2017
I’ve gotten a lot of comments about the past three email news summaries and took a week off to think about them. (Actually, I was just too disorganized to get last week’s out. Sorry!) A few significant people tactfully suggested that I cut the length down. I agree, with the caveat that I will have to leave a few items out (important topics like testosterone research…). With brevity in mind, I’ll get directly to…
Monday, July 24, 2017
I’m passionate about clean air. Before joining the Coastal Conservation League, I worked for the state’s Bureau of Air Quality at DHEC. There, I did air quality modeling to help inform state policy on keeping the air healthy for everyone. Clean air is important; unhealthy air can cause or contribute to respiratory diseases like asthma, emphysema and bronchitis, and it’s even been linked to heart-disease. Plus, dirty air can wreck the beautiful scenic vistas…
Wednesday, July 19, 2017
The beauty and genius of a work of art may be reconceived, though its first material expression be destroyed; a vanished harmony may yet again inspire the composer; but when the last individual of a race of living beings breathes no more, another heaven and another earth must pass before such a one can be again.
William Beebe, The Bird, 1906
One of the benefits of spending a week in…
Tuesday, July 11, 2017
Last week the Lowcountry lost one of its greatest citizens and guardians. Steve Gates died Friday at his home on Wadmalaw Island. In a comparatively brief time in our community, he left an unparalleled legacy of generosity and service. I’m proud to say that Steve was a friend, but even more grateful that he decided to spend a good portion of his life in Charleston and the Lowcountry.
When Steve arrived nearly two decades ago,…
Wednesday, July 5, 2017
What a dramatic weekend it was – beautiful shifting clouds, stultifying heat and humidity interrupted unexpectedly by micro-bursts of cool air from threatening, but unrealized, thunderstorms. Although I occasionally envy our friends who annually migrate north, (human and otherwise), Lowcountry summers are incomparable and not to be missed.
Summers and winters on the coast will forever be better because of the efforts of Ken Seeger. As this article from the Post and Courier reports, Ken just retired…
Monday, June 26, 2017
It may be the lingering serenity of a great trip to France, but there seems to have been an abundance of good, or at least cautiously encouraging, news over the past two weeks. First, some impressions of our delightful, but all too limited, French experience.
France is not a small country. It’s about the size of Texas. But it doesn’t seem to suffer from the American affliction of bigness. The roads are small, except for…
Thursday, June 15, 2017
I received a lot of compliments on last week’s email condemning America’s withdrawal from the Paris climate accord. But my comments also spawned more complaints than usual. I’ll boil them down to three points: 1) I should have reported that, unlike Syria, Nicaragua refused to sign the accord because it failed to include binding emission reduction targets. (Actually, I don’t know why Syria didn’t sign. It could be that the country has its unclean…