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Hydrofracked: One man’s quest for answers about natural gas drilling

By Abrahm Lustgarten, ProPublica (reprinted in High Country News)

Pavillion, Wyoming

There are few things a family needs more than fresh drinking water. And Louis Meeks, a burly Vietnam War veteran with deep roots in the central Wyoming grasslands, had abundant water on his 40-acre alfalfa farm, which is speckled with apple and plum trees, on a rural dirt road five miles from the town of Pavillion. For 35 years, he drew it clear and sweet from a well near the front door of the plain, eight-room ranch house that he and his wife, Donna, own. The water was so good that neighbors used to pull off the road to fill plastic jugs for themselves.

Earth’s Sixth Mass Extinction: Is It Almost Here?

From The National Science Foundation on March 2, 2011

Steep decline of many animal species warns that Earth is on the brink

Earth's warming climate is contributing to an infection responsible for tropical frog extinctions.

With the steep decline in populations of many animal species, scientists have warned that Earth is on the brink of a mass extinction like those that have occurred just five times during the past 540 million years.

Each of these “Big Five” saw three-quarters or more of all animal species go extinct.

Why Did Rome Fall – Weather?

From Science Today – Beyond The Headlines (Blog from the California Academy of Sciences)

By Anne Holden on January 24, 2011

What do the invention of farming, the fall of the Roman Empire, and the Black Death all have in common? Besides the fact that each represents a turning point in the history of human civilization, new research gives substantial proof to the notion that each was influenced by the weather.

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