ourenvironment.info logo
Educating, informing and motivating website visitors on a wide range of environmental topics. That has been the mission of Our Environment since the early 1990s. Each column features "What We Can Do" information to assist in acting on important and timely topics. Here are a few examples of our current work.


By Jeff Stark

Join the -- VOTE!One of the core values and aspirations of the global campaign toward renewable energy is moving closer to reality. The technology is known as "virtual power plants" (VPP). It aims to capitalize on the success of the concept of "distributed generation." The idea is that relatively small-scale electric grids, including residential solar photovoltaic, wind and other renewable energy installations can be networked. The process is similar to computer networks, which unite virtually any number of participants in a network available to all. The VPP collects, conditions, produces and markets renewable energy generated as a replacement power source to power plants that burn carbon-based fuels to generate energy. And, unlike power producers ... MORE ...


By Jeff Stark

Action from TeslaWe hear a lot about "existential" threats these days. Seems like everybody with an environmental opinion is trying to convince us to buy into their particular apocalyptic vision. They point out that there is plenty of information in the historical record leading to the conclusion that civilizations and cultures do indeed disappear. The cause can range from self-destructive politics and policies to nature turned destroyer. Living is a dangerous business, dangerous to each of us and all of us. There is nothing new about existential threats. The only thing that is new is that every day we have more at risk.

It does seem like we are playing in a more dangerous playpen these days. In large part this is a function of human beings becoming more and more capable of creating ....MORE ...


By Jeff Stark

Before and after One thing we are learning as a result of the Covid catastrophe is that positive actions can have immediate effects. For example, when the lockdown began one of the most visible results was a huge reduction in automobile traffic. Commuting to work by car represents, by some reports, about 30% of all automobile traffic. As we all know it consumes, for some, hours of every workday and is essentially unproductive time. It is unpleasant, expensive and can be a huge negative element in the social disruption that can make modern life so unfulfilling. However,there is also good news. According to the website cnbc.com "Air pollution has dropped to unprecedented levels across the world as major cities and countries impose lockdown measures to curb the spread of the corona virus."

The primary cause of this phenomenon, not surprisingly, is fairly easy to understand. ...MORE

JULY 2020

By Jeff Stark

today's leaders are ready for tomorrow One of the most enduring memes of the climate change deniers is that climate scientists - climatologists - are united in a global scam to enrich the scientists. They are also responsible, as the meme goes, for the "fake news" that seems always to accompany their "reports." This is a claim and belief that is easy for the deniers. They have no strong connections to science, and often seem to revel in their own ignorance. This is classic conspiracy theorist behavior, easy to believe, and difficult to debunk. It is also beloved beyond belief among those who still believe that President Obama was actually born in some foreign country and groomed from childhood to prepare for the ...MORE ...

JUNE 2020

By Jeff Stark

Deniers VS. Skeptics With apologies to Buck Owens, who penned and performed the country classic "It's Cryin' Time Again" we note that it is now lyin' time again. We know that because nowhere is it more obvious and widespread than in the ranks of the climate deniers. They "don't believe" the science that is the foundation of the movement to combat global climate change. The lies coming from this small but vocal minority assault us every day. They come from social media and corporate boardrooms. They recycle the same lies over and over as new converts behave as if ... ... MORE

MAY 2020

By Jeff Stark

It's one crisis vs.another There's' a lot of angst free floating around the environmental community these days. After decades of efforts to move the discussions about climate change, loss of species, ocean acidification, large scale air and water pollution and other giant threats we finally made it to the top of the heap. There we were, number one or two on most lists of issues which were threatening us. It looked like decades of diligent effort were beginning to payoff. Finally, we saw movement, some growth in the group consciousness, some reason to be hopeful, even fulfilled. Perhaps most amazing thing was the delightful way we found people lecturing us using facts, and arguments, we had been using for decades. ... MORE
APRIL 2020

By Jeff Stark

Business As Usual There's lot of talk these days about "getting back to normal." We say it when we remember what it was like when we could go to the grocery store without needing a mask, and when they almost always had what we wanted. We say it when we remember that we used to go to the movies with friends, and take our kids to the beach, and plan a vacation. We greeted each other with a hug and a kiss on the cheek and jammed into a restaurant booth. When we thought about the way we lived it seemed normal, and we took it for granted. Now we are grappling with the effects of a dysfunctional national leadership, a poorly educated populace and a disease that seems medieval in its threat to humans. Given all this it is no surprise ... MORE
MARCH 2020

By Jeff Stark

Today's city viewsThere are new data and they are clear -- our neighbors may be killing us. This is not fake news or a convoluted scheme to extract money from an uninformed public. Rather it is one of the main findings of a new study, entitled "Out-of-State Emissions Cause Half of Pollutions Deaths." recently published in the journal "Nature." According to the authors "More than half of all early deaths in the United States due to poor air quality are a result of emissions originating outside of the state in which those deaths occur."

These data are derived from a new study that tracked "combustion emissions of polluting compounds from various sectors, looking at each state in the lower 48, from season to season and year to year between 2005 and 2018." The research illustrated that half of the air pollution released in one locale inevitably floats over state lines. Here it affects human health and increases the incidence of early death. ... ... MORE