Accurate, Focused Research on Law, Technology and Knowledge Discovery Since 2002

Daily Archives: September 16, 2013

The Environmental Price Tag on a Ton of Mountaintop Removal Coal

Brian D. Lutz, Emily S. Bernhardt, William H. Schlesinger (2013). The Environmental Price Tag on a Ton of Mountaintop Removal Coal PLOS ONE DOI: 10.1371/journal.pone.0073203

“While several thousand square kilometers of land area have been subject to surface mining in the Central Appalachians, no reliable estimate exists for how much coal is produced per unit landscape disturbance. We provide this estimate using regional satellite-derived mine delineations and historical county-level coal production data for the period 1985–2005, and further relate the aerial extent of mining disturbance to stream impairment and loss of ecosystem carbon sequestration potential. To meet current US coal demands, an area the size of Washington DC would need to be mined every 81 days. A one-year supply of coal would result in ~2,300 km of stream impairment and a loss of ecosystem carbon sequestration capacity comparable to the global warming potential of >33,000 US homes. For the first time, the environmental impacts of surface coal mining can be directly scaled with coal production rates.”

United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic

United Nations Mission to Investigate Allegations of the Use of Chemical Weapons in the Syrian Arab Republic Report on the Alleged Use of Chemical Weapons in the Ghouta Area of Damascus on 21 August 2013 Note by the Secretary-General “1.In transmitting simultaneously to the Security Council and the General Assembly the report on the incidentContinue Reading

Presentation – “Why Google?”

“Dr. Lynn Silipigni Connaway presented Why Google?: “…[Google] saved time, it saved gas, I got what I needed, and it wasn’t a big deal.” at the OCLC Research Briefing at UNC Chapel Hill on 7 June 2013. During this presentation, she discussed results of multiple user behavior studies and recommendations for promoting user engagement with library services,Continue Reading

GPO – The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report

The Financial Crisis Inquiry Report: Final Report Of The National Commission On The Causes Of The Financial And Economic Crisis In The United States: “The year 2013 marks the 5th anniversary of the start of the financial crisis. In the wake of the most significant financial crisis since the Great Depression, the President signed intoContinue Reading

Pew – Cell Internet Use 2013

Cell Internet Use 2013 by Maeve Duggan, Aaron Smith – Sep 16, 2013 “63% of adult cell owners now use their phones to go online, a figure that has doubled since we first started tracking internet usage on cell phones in 2009. In addition, 34% of these cell internet users say that they mostly goContinue Reading

LA Times – 5 years after financial crash, many losers – and some big winners

Corporate America, banks, the super rich and the index investing concept have gained. Savers, low-skilled workers, many homeowners, and stock exchanges have suffered. “WINNER: The banks. In the second quarter of this year U.S. banks earned a total of $42.2 billion — the biggest industry profit in history, and double the earnings of the sameContinue Reading

New GAO Reports – Health Care Workforce, Positive Train Control

HEALTH CARE WORKFORCE - Federally Funded Training Programs in Fiscal Year 2012, GAO-13-709R, Aug 15, 2013 POSITIVE TRAIN CONTROL - Additional Authorities Could Benefit Implementation, GAO-13-720, Aug 16, 2013

Untreatable: Report by CDC details today’s drug-resistant health threats

“Every year, more than two million people in the United States get infections that are resistant to antibiotics and at least 23,000 people die as a result, according to a new report issued by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.  The report, Antibiotic Resistance Threats in the United States, 2013, presents the first snapshot ofContinue Reading

Job Reallocation over Time: Decomposing the Decline

Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta: “One of the primary ways an economy expands is by quickly reallocating resources to the places where they are most productive. If new and productive firms are able to quickly grow and unproductive firms can quickly shrink, then the economy as a whole will experience faster growth and the manyContinue Reading

More Snowden documents – NSA monitors international payments

“The National Security Agency (NSA) widely monitors international payments, banking and credit card transactions, according to documents seen by SPIEGEL.  The information from the American foreign intelligence agency, acquired by former NSA contractor and whistleblower Edward Snowden, show that the spying is conducted by a branch called “Follow the Money” (FTM). The collected information thenContinue Reading