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Almanac Archive for September 4, 2012

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Green Tip of the Week
Saving water while washing dishes is both important and easy, as long as we keep to the big picture. The best method is a matter of opinion, but for the non-zealots, here are three tips:
1. If you have a modern Energy Star dishwasher, use it! Don't pre-rinse excessively, and try to run full loads, but that dishwasher is more efficient than the majority of people who hand wash.
2. If you hand wash, use separate sinks or bowls of soapy and rinse water. Rinse again with cold running water, and never leave the faucet running while you scrub.
3. If you have an old, inefficient dishwasher, think about saving up for a new one. A modern bottom-of-the-line unit uses much less water (and probably cleans better) than a higher quality old one.

The last edition of the Almanac erroneously stated that only 7,000 cubic meters of ice remained in the Arctic Ocean at the end of summer in 2012, down from 13,000 eight years ago. The correct unit for both numbers is cubic kilometers, which is quite a bit more ice (a billion times more, actually).

Conservation Calendar

Seashore Discovery

Every Monday, Wednesday and Friday 10:00 to 11:30 a.m. at Felix Neck Wildlife Sanctuary in Edgartown.
Meet creatures of the sea including crabs, whelks and scallops. Cost is $9 or $6 for Mass Audubon members; free for kids under three.

Toddler Time
Wednesdays, 10:00 am to noon, Native Earth Teaching Farm, Chilmark.
Wednesday mornings at Native Earth are Toddler Time, where toddlers and their adults can meet and play in a fun and unfettered environment. Suggested donation of $10. For more info call 508-645-3304 or see website.

Guided Birding Tours

Saturdays, 9:00 to 11:30 am, starting at MV Reg. High School.
Visit birding hot spots with your guide Robert Culbert. Carpool will depart from the high school faculty parking lot at 9:00. Cost is $30 per adult, $15 for under 18. For more details, call 508-693-4908.

West Tisbury Farmer's Market

Saturdays, 9:00 to noon at the Grange Hall, West Tisbury.
Fresh picked produce from local farms, flowers, delicious baked goods and prepared foods from Island kitchens and more. For more info, see new website.
Tuesday, September 4, 2012

Local News

Last Call at the Oasis

Time's running out . . . (click for movie poster)

Join VCS and the MV Film Society this Friday (Sept. 7) at 4:30 at the Capawock Theater in Vineyard Haven for the next film in our "Green on Screen" collaboration. Last Call at the Oasis, by Jessica Yu, examines the present problems and future shortages of “the single most necessary element for any of us to sustain and live and thrive.” For tickets, and to watch the trailer, see the MVFS festival website.

From the film's website:
Developed, financed and executive produced by Participant Media, the company responsible for AN INCONVENIENT TRUTH, FOOD, INC. and WAITING FOR “SUPERMAN”, LAST CALL AT THE OASIS presents a powerful argument for why the global water crisis will be the central issue facing our world this century. Illuminating the vital role water plays in our lives, exposing the defects in the current system and depicting communities already struggling with its ill-effects, the film features activist Erin Brockovich and such distinguished experts as Peter Gleick, Alex Prud’homme, Jay Famiglietti and Robert Glennon.

Warmer Oceans No Picnic for Fish

In the sixth installment of her series on climate change (originally published in the Vineyard Gazette), Liz Durkee describes the impact of rising ocean temperatures on fish and the fishing business:

“The sad fact is that humans are responsible for disrupting the finely-tuned ocean and land-based ecosystems that sustain us. We didn’t foresee this when fossil fuel consumption charged the Industrial Revolution. Now we know. Now we can choose to buy local seafood and boycott species that are at risk.”

Other News

The Sound of Silence

In addition to their bright colors, healthy reefs produce a cacophony of sounds, if you know how to listen for them. (photo by Martin Strmko)

For more than 40 years, musician Bernie Krause has been recording the sounds of nature for use in his electronic compositions. Many of these recordings now represent valuable archives of sounds that can no longer be replicated, at least not easily, or in their original habitats. For example, recordings from damaged and dying coral reefs are much quieter than those from healthy sections of the same reef.

From Krause, as quoted in an The Guardian:
"A great silence is spreading over the natural world even as the sound of man is becoming deafening. Little by little the vast orchestra of life, the chorus of the natural world, is in the process of being quietened. . . . The sense of desolation extends beyond mere silence."

To read more, and hear some of his sounds, click over to the article.
Submit your conservation news to: almanac@vineyardconservation.org

Copyright (C) *2012* *Vineyard Conservation Society* All rights reserved.

Original content by Jeremy Houser unless otherwise noted.