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January 22, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

If you want to get a handle on the Ontario COVID-19 situation based on the perspective of a real health expert, take the time to listen to this interview with Dr. Adelstein (Steini) Brown, followed by André Picard. It starts at the 22:40 mark in the audio link below, and runs about 23 minutes.
Transcript and audio link here:
https://www.cbc.ca/radio/thecurrent/the-current-for-jan-21-2020-1.5881908/january-21-2021-episode-transcript-1.5883221

New variant behind massive COVID-19 outbreak at Ontario LTC home
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/new-variant-behind-massive-covid-19-outbreak-at-ontario-ltc-home-1.5277505

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Ontario rejects extension for probe into LTC homes after commission blames province for ‘significant delays’
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/article-commission-seeks-extension-on-care-home-investigation-as-it-struggles/

World News – CA – Internal government documents reveal how Ontario has “watered down” its strategies to keep COVID-19 out of classrooms
https://thecameroontoday.com/news/world-news-ca-internal-government-documents-reveal-how-ontario-has-watered-down-its-strategies-to-keep-covid-19-out-of-classrooms/

Mr. Premier, bring your firecracker: COVID-19 requires two-prong approach to sick days
https://www.simcoe.com/opinion-story/10314209-mr-premier-bring-your-firecracker-covid-19-requires-two-prong-approach-to-sick-days/

If it feels like I'm picking on the OPC and Ontario Premier a lot, it's because they have the job of managing this health crisis - not anyone else. Health is a provincial jurisdiction, and in other areas where other parties (e.g. federal government) have offered to provide anything but lots more money, they have been told to stop interfering. So, as I see it, the provincial government, which will not defer to health experts on making health decisions, owns this mess. I would happily bring out commentary from other Ontario political parties - noting they have no authority - if I could find any. I would be happier still if the current governments in the plague provinces would stop providing content that needs to be called out.

Climate Change

Canada underestimating methane emissions from orphan wells by as much as 150%, study finds
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/industry-news/energy-and-resources/article-canada-underestimating-methane-emissions-from-orphan-wells-by-as-much/

World's oceans continue to warm, despite reduced carbon emissions
https://news.cgtn.com/news/2021-01-17/World-s-oceans-continue-to-warm-despite-reduced-carbon-emissions-X641fgLHqw/index.html

The planet is dying faster than we thought
https://www.livescience.com/ghastly-future-global-crises.html

New research suggests 1.5C climate target will be out of reach without greener COVID-19 recovery plans
https://theconversation.com/new-research-suggests-1-5c-climate-target-will-be-out-of-reach-without-greener-covid-19-recovery-plans-151527

Small modular reactor plan bolsters nuclear industry's future, but renewables could address energy issues now
https://www.cbc.ca/news/opinion/opinion-small-modular-reactor-strategy-1.5869623
SMRs are not a clean energy solution, and even if they were, they won't be ready in time to help address the climate change problem we are facing today. There are off-the-shelf solutions ready today that will make a positive difference in mitigating planetary warming, at much lower cost to taxpayers.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Your moods are contagious. Share positive energy.
In your life, who are you drawn to? Grumpy Gus or Positive Pat?
Which do you think we need more of during the pandemic?

;-) “I not only use all the brains that I have,
     but all that I can borrow.”
     - Woodrow WilsonI can't see.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 21, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

If the plan is to beat COVID-19 with vaccines, they need to work.
Quebec vaccine plan may be rethought after troubling Israeli data, says provincial advisor
https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/quebec-vaccine-plan-may-be-rethought-after-troubling-israeli-data-says-provincial-advisor-1.5275234

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Here's what the province should do now to make LTC homes safer: Ontario Medical Association
https://www.sootoday.com/coronavirus-covid-19-sault-ste-marie-news/heres-what-the-province-should-do-now-to-make-ltc-homes-safer-ontario-medical-association-3273078

Vaccination rates of Ottawa long-term care workers unknown because of tracking 'issue'
https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/vaccination-rates-of-ottawa-long-term-care-workers-unknown-because-of-tracking-issue

'I really am totally speechless': With about half of Ontario LTC residents still not vaccinated, experts question province's priorities
https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2021/01/20/i-really-am-totally-speechless-with-about-half-of-ontario-ltc-residents-still-not-vaccinated-experts-question-provinces-priorities.html

Local rapid COVID tests a 'game-changer,' but not accessible at all long-term care homes
https://ottawacitizen.com/news/local-news/local-rapid-covid-tests-a-game-changer-but-not-accessible-at-all-long-term-care-homes

As each day passes, it's harder and harder to believe that the Ontario Ford government is taking the pandemic and lives of Ontarians seriously, and treating it as more than theatre for consumption by voters.

(Digital) Deception

On January 20th, 2021, Joseph R. Biden was sworn in as the 46th President of the United States. I understand that a significant number of Americans were stunned to see this happen. This was not the PLAN they had been told would happen. They were lied to, massively, repeatedly and continuously, and their lives may be ruined as a result.

The new President said, in his speech:
"And, yes, the truth.
Recent weeks and months have taught us a painful lesson.
There is truth and there are lies.
Lies told for power and for profit.
And each of us has a duty and responsibility, as citizens, as Americans, and especially as leaders - leaders who have pledged to honor our Constitution and protect our nation - to defend the truth and to defeat the lies."

QAnon is mortally wounded. But the right’s conspiracy theories will never die https://www.washingtonpost.com/opinions/2021/01/20/qanon-is-mortally-wounded-rights-conspiracy-theories-will-never-die/
Those who have used lies for profit and to increase their power must be held to account for their conscious actions, or we are simply inviting a repeat by those who have learned to deceive even more effectively.

Hackers abusing this perfectly innocent Windows 10 feature to infect machines https://www.techradar.com/news/hackers-abusing-this-perfectly-innocent-windows-10-feature-to-infect-machines

Another supply chain attack: Infected IObit promotion installs ransomware https://www.itworldcanada.com/article/another-supply-chain-attack-infected-iobit-promotion-installs-ransomware/440997

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
When you encounter an obstacle, think like water. Water is flexible, patient and powerful.
Adjust, and move around, over, under and through to reach your objective.

;-) Sometimes when I close my eyes ...
     I can't see.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 20, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

What's different about the coronavirus 'variants of concern' flagged by WHO
https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/coronavirus-variants-concern-canada-1.5879223
It appears that giving SARS-CoV-2 a big pool of hosts and transmission paths has led to more opportunities for mutations. Who'd a thunk it? Oh, right - EVERYONE.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Number of young people hospitalized due to COVID-19 increases
https://www.kamloopsthisweek.com/news/number-of-young-people-hospitalized-due-to-covid-19-increases-1.24269265
Youth does not confer immunity.

B.C. health officials haven't found a single case of seasonal flu spreading in the community this winter
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/influenza-remarkably-absent-in-bc-covid-19-pandemic-1.5878835
Flu season has been stopped in its tracks this winter
ttps://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/nova-scotia/flu-season-start-no-cases-nova-scotia-canada-covid-19-1.5878189
COVID-19 is not the flu. COVID-19 is killing thousands of Canadians. The flu has essentially disappeared in Canada this year, likely due to the health prevention measures put in place to suppress COVID transmission.

And now we know why Doug Ford was huffing and puffing and blustering about the delay in Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine deliveries yesterday. Diversion.
Member of Ontario's COVID-19 vaccination task force resigns after travel outside country
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/member-ontario-covid-19-vaccination-distribution-task-force-travel-resignation-1.5879831
Two more public officials step down following international travel
https://globalnews.ca/news/7587601/london-area-officials-covid-19-international-travel/
Sigh. For those of you where a week delay in getting vaccinated is a significant problem, there is this advice. Stay home. Practice physical distancing. Wash your hands regularly with soap, properly. If you have to come in contact with people outside your bubble (e.g. picking up or delivering medications or groceries), wear a suitable mask, properly. It's radical, but for the most part it seems to work. Like vaccines.

Airborne-particle experts explain how to stay safe from new highly contagious coronavirus strain
https://www.oregonlive.com/coronavirus/2021/01/airborne-particle-experts-explain-how-to-stay-safe-from-new-highly-contagious-coronavirus-strain.html
If you think that's not enough protection against the airborne virus, I still recommend more extensive coverage. https://econogics.com/c4c/
I wore mine today.

Fortress Fossil Fuels Highlights/Gaslights

Energy firms misled Alberta regulators on cleanup of well sites
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-energy-firms-misled-alberta-regulators-on-cleanup-of-well-sites/

Alberta inquiry-commissioned reports downplay climate crisis, veer into conspiracies, critics say
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2021/01/15/news/alberta-inquiry-reports-downplay-climate-crisis-critics

Canada might already be over-piped: Eric Nuttall
https://www.bnnbloomberg.ca/video/canada-might-already-be-over-piped-eric-nuttall~2120903

Big Oil’s flagship plastic waste project sinks on the Ganges
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-environment-plastic-insight/big-oils-flagship-plastic-waste-project-sinks-on-the-ganges-idUSKBN29N024

Has Prince Charles’ Nature Pledge Become A Platform For BP To Greenwash Oil Spills?
https://www.forbes.com/sites/nishandegnarain/2021/01/17/has-prince-charles-nature-pledge-become-a-platform-for-bp-to-greenwash/

There's A Big Hole In The Argument That Ditching Fossil Fuels Will Kill Jobs
https://www.huffpost.com/entry/big-hole-argument-ditching-fossil-fuels-kill-jobs_n_6001d297c5b62c0057bcc973?ncid=NEWSSTAND0001

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
An organized life is a calmer life. Allow time for distractions, and try to keep them in their assigned time slots. If you are working on something important and need to focus, book time in your calendar just for it. Then, as you have to deal with other things which need immediate attention, tell your panic stress to back off - there's time scheduled for the big thing.

;-) I always wanted to be somebody, but now I
     realize I should have been more specific.
     ~ Lily Tomlin

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 19, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Here are the 2 stories that struck me in the past couple of days. First, there are still those who believe the pandemic is a hoax, somehow orchestrated in concert by every government in the world to push their communist/socialist/libertarian/unfettered capitalism/democratic/authoritarian agendas. Now, that's a unifying force on a level our species has never seen, and simply isn't true. But here's an isolated indicator of how much impact the pandemic is having on death counts.

Air quality regulator temporarily suspends cremation limits for LA County amid 'backlog' from pandemic
https://www.cnn.com/2021/01/18/us/california-crematoriums-limit-suspension-coronavirus/index.html

We're hitting some bumps on the road to getting vaccinations out to Canadians. That's to be expected. This is new ground for the world, trying to get a new set of vaccines invented, tested, trialled, reviewed, approved, moved to mass production, distributed (hyper cold-chain is new at this scale), and then the logistics of creating temporary but appropriate venues, staffing and tracking those who get their shots to ensure they get both doses for the mRNA vaccines and more. That's a lot of moving parts and a lot of players to get into place for something we haven't done before. Flu shots are small change compared to this undertaking, and have had decades to get to their current level of maturity. So it really doesn't help when those mishandling their part choose to focus on deflecting blame and create more mixed messaging, rather than just solving the problems.

Health-care workers bristle at suggestion they’re slow signing up for vaccine
https://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/vaccine-call-out-rankles-doctors-who-criticize-communications

Vaccine rollout statements from Alberta government cause confusion for health-care workers
https://globalnews.ca/news/7579542/alberta-covid-19-vaccine-appointment-callout/
'“There’s people calling and saying there’s no vaccine then getting the call and saying yes there is but they have to travel a couple of hours to get it. It’s been pretty clear that there’s chaos and disorganization in terms of rolling it out,” [Danielle Larivee, first vice president of the United Nurses of Alberta] said.'

There's some irony in the largely pro-business plague provinces slamming the federal government over not GIVING them enough vaccines when the supply bottleneck for the approved vaccines is the for-profit pharmaceutical companies. Yes, the supply side is bumpy, but also way ahead of any schedule being forecast just six months ago. The 'last-mile' of delivery to arms needs to take that uncertainty into account. That's a lesson we should have learned from the roll-out of testing, which is still uneven and generally (in my opinion) not happening at the scale which would be appropriate.

The target is the SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. The tools at our disposal are preventive health measures, education, communication and cooperation until the vaccines are fully distributed. Work the problem.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

'We're not recovering': 'Long Haulers' say they're still experiencing COVID symptoms months later
https://www.msn.com/en-ca/health/medical/we-re-not-recovering-long-haulers-say-they-re-still-experiencing-covid-symptoms-months-later/ar-BB1cRTzt

‘I’m scared’: Coronavirus long-haulers claim they’ve been left to fend for themselves
https://globalnews.ca/news/7558364/coronavirus-long-haulers-10-months-later/

Canadian researchers looking into COVID ‘long-haul’ effects
https://healthydebate.ca/2020/12/topic/covid-long-haul-effects

Symptom Duration and Risk Factors for Delayed Return to Usual Health Among Outpatients with COVID-19 in a Multistate Health Care Systems Network — United States, March–June 2020
https://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/volumes/69/wr/pdfs/mm6930e1-H.pdf

Most provinces count 'long-haulers' as 'recovered. They don't break out the 'long-haulers' as a distinct category.

Vaccines will make a difference eventually, but until then, you don't want to be infected by the SARS-CoV-2 virus. Even those under the age of 30 are not immune from these long-term effects.

Immune system 'remembers' coronavirus for at least 6 months: study
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/immune-system-remembers-coronavirus-for-at-least-6-months-study-1.5271359

Canadians who have had COVID-19 should still get the vaccine, experts say
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/canadians-who-have-had-covid-19-should-still-get-the-vaccine-experts-say-1.5271230

‘Precarious work is a health hazard’: When staying home isn’t an option
https://globalnews.ca/news/7577119/coronavirus-stay-home-order-workers-covid19/

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Judge others favourably. You never know what battle they are fighting.
More true than ever during the pandemic.

;-) Craziness doesn't run in my family.
     It gallops.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 18, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

This is post #256 on COVID-19. 2**8. Let's hope I don't get to 2**9 here. It's good to understand how exponents work. But, in the context of of COVID-19, also frightening.

Canada did pass the two milestones I feared over the weekend, even with incomplete reporting. Over 700,000 confirmed cases and 18,000 deaths. Sadly, the 'leadership' in the plague provinces have scope to make it worse by continuing to botch messaging, foul up vaccination programs, play favourites and further erode trust in our health authorities and experts.

Diagnosing the failures of COVID-19 communication in Ontario [13-minute audio segment]
https://www.cbc.ca/listen/live-radio/1-193-fresh-air/clip/15819122-diagnosing-failures-covid-19-communication-ontario

Rexdale siblings help to fight COVID-19 in their neighbourhood with care packages [5-minue video]
https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1844410947639
I admire the initiative and community spirit displayed here, but why isn't this being done by public health?

How the spread of coronavirus variants could completely change the pandemic in Canada
https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/coronavirus-variants-canada-1.5875629

The Atlantic bubble was not only a good idea, but a blueprint for dramatic change
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/newfoundland-labrador/edward-riche-atlantic-bloc-1.5874814

With a population of 7.5 million and physically attached to China, Hong Kong has suffered only 163 deaths from COVID-19 and reported less than 10,000 cases. Despite effectively being in a low-grade civil war where democracy is pitted against the wishes of the Chinese government.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Over 200 long-term care homes haven't paid PSWs $3 per hour temporary wage increase
https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/over-200-long-term-care-homes-haven-t-paid-psws-3-per-hour-temporary-wage-increase-1.5269713

Montreal: In latest scramble to fill dire nurse shortage, Quebec asks doctors to help
https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/in-latest-scramble-to-fill-dire-nurse-shortage-quebec-asks-doctors-to-help-1.5269546

Ontario inspectors find 36 stores violating COVID-19 rules during big-box safety blitz
https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/ontario-inspectors-find-36-stores-violating-covid-19-rules-during-big-box-safety-blitz-1.5270432

Ontario Employers Say These Workers Are 'Essential.' But The Employees Disagree
https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/ontario-workers-essential-work-from-home_ca_6001af91c5b62c0057bc8b21

The COVID-19 PCR Test Is Reliable Despite the Commotion About Ct Values
https://www.mcgill.ca/oss/article/covid-19-critical-thinking/covid-19-pcr-test-reliable-despite-commotion-about-ct-values

Canada has secured more vaccine doses per capita than anyone else, but it’s been slow to administer them
https://www.washingtonpost.com/world/the_americas/canada-coronavirus-vaccine-rollout-slow/2021/01/14/80617754-49f3-11eb-a9f4-0e668b9772ba_story.html

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
If you're facing a big, intimidating problem, break it down into manageable, solvable pieces. Then, attack one of the smaller pieces. As the old riddle goes: how do you eat an elephant?
One piece at a time. Feed the village.

;-) Here’s something to think about:
     How come you never see a headline like
     ‘Psychic Wins Lottery’?
      ~ Jay Leno

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 16, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

It's been a while since I've had a look at the infection numbers in any depth. It's such an energy-suck these days.

Canada will likely pass 700,000 confirmed cases today, and 18,000 deaths tomorrow. The slightly positive trend line on new cases is so short it could be aberration, especially if the UK, SA and Brazil variants start to appear in Canada at in increasing rate. By late Friday afternoon, over 500,000 vaccine doses have been injected, and at least 26,000 people have had the second dose.

In the U.S., there are over 24 million confirmed cases; over 7% of the entire population of the country. There have been over 400,000 deaths. The 7-day moving average as of yesterday was 3,384 deaths per day.

Worldwide, we have exceeded 94 million cases and 2 million deaths. That's a death rate of over 2% if someone is infected. It appears we're getting better at keeping people alive, when hospitals aren't overwhelmed. We've had lots of practice. In fact, far too much.

South Korea was a leader in suppressing the virus until mid-November 2020, and then lost control. Even so, with a population over 50 million, they have reported a total of 71,241 cases and 1,217 deaths. With 1.3 times the population of Canada, South Korea has only 1/15 the number of deaths.
Leadership decisions matter.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

C.D.C. Warns the New Virus Variant Could Fuel Huge Spikes in Covid Cases
https://www.nytimes.com/2021/01/15/health/covid-cdc-variant.html

Nova Scotia embraced rapid testing for COVID-19 months ago. Why have other provinces been so slow?
https://nationalpost.com/news/politics/nova-scotia-embraced-rapid-testing-for-covid-19-months-ago-why-have-other-provinces-been-so-slow
(Nova Scotia is part of TANZANC. What do they know that the plague provinces seem unable to grasp?)

Climate Change

How carbon capture technology can add to the emissions problem

If the objective is to produce clean, (net-)zero-GHG electricity, carbon capture doesn't quite hit the mark, and it isn't even on the economically competitive list anymore except for the fact that taxpayers pay for carbon capture projects, while unsubsidized inherently clean technologies (e.g. efficiency upgrades, conservation, wind turbines, photovoltaic panels) are now winning power supply bids over subsidized fossil fuels like coal, oil and recently even over natural gas - in Alberta.

Decoding the Hype Behind the Natural Gas Industry's Hydrogen Push
https://www.desmogblog.com/2021/01/14/decoding-hype-behind-natural-gas-industry-hydrogen-push
I have said all this before, but now here's somebody else with the hydrogen reality message.

Be very careful if you choose to invest in the hyprogen bubble, and read the Nikola hydrogen truck story first. If long-term taxpayer support is removed, the hyprogen bubble will collapse.

The Canadian government's recently announced "Hydrogen Strategy for Canada" starts with a $1,500,000,000.00 gift from taxpayers. That won't be the end of the tab for Canadian taxpayers.
https://www.canada.ca/en/natural-resources-canada/news/2020/12/minister-oregan-launches-hydrogen-strategy-for-canada.html
Like much of the hype, it creates a green smokescreen for blue and grey hydrogen.

But here's the rub, in my opinion: "...low-carbon and zero-emission fuel technology as a key part of our path to net-zero carbon emissions by *2050*".

Offshore wind and green hydrogen don't mix: Rystad
https://splash247.com/offshore-wind-and-green-hydrogen-dont-mix-rystad/

Let me add one more reality to counter the current hyprogen bubble. The UNFCCC says we now have less than 10 years to turn the GHG emissions direction around. 'Green' hydrogen won't be a serious factor by then. None of the mirages speak to significant implementation before 2030. Canada's target is 2050. In the meantime, the blue/grey hydrogen infrastructure in place (over 99% of hydrogen production today) will make the GHG emissions situation worse through the next 10-30 years or more, if we follow through on the hydrogen mythology.

‘Groggy climate giant’ slowly awakening from under Arctic Ocean
https://www.theweathernetwork.com/ca/news/article/groggy-climate-giant-slowly-awakening-from-under-arctic-ocean

Pollutants and other aerosols trigger more intense thunderstorms
https://physicsworld.com/a/pollutants-and-other-aerosols-trigger-more-intense-thunderstorms/

Climate change: Earthquake 'hack' reveals scale of ocean warming
https://www.bbc.com/news/science-environment-54193334

The New Green Building Revolution Uses Timber to Build 'Plyscrapers' That Save Tons of CO2
https://www.goodnewsnetwork.org/wooden-skyscrapers-called-plyscrapers-set-to-transform-the-construction-industry/

How biodiesel EV chargers could connect remote locations
"https://thedriven.io/2021/01/15/how-biodiesel-ev-chargers-could-connect-remote-locations/
Also note that portable solar EV chargers are already in production and for sale off the shelf.
https://beamforall.com/

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Today, be kind to yourself and others. Tomorrow, repeat.

;-) Ahhhhh .... That moment of contentment when the first sip of coffee touches my soul.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 15, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

As of this morning, over 475,000 doses of COVID-19 vaccines have been administered in Canada, and roughly 25,000 people have had their second dose which should boost their immunity within a couple of weeks.
The trick is to keep taking preventative measures so they don't get infected in the next few weeks, and to stop possible spread as vaccination immunity does not mean you are not spreading the virus. That's the good news ...

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

COVID-19 vaccine rollout: Why a mask and social distancing are still needed, even if you get the shot
https://theconversation.com/covid-19-vaccine-rollout-why-a-mask-and-social-distancing-are-still-needed-even-if-you-get-the-shot-152351

Johnson & Johnson's 1-Shot COVID-19 Vaccine Shows Promise in Early-Stage Trials
https://time.com/5929675/johnson-johnsons-1-shot-covid-19-vaccine-shows-promise-in-early-stage-trials/

Johnson & Johnson confident of March rollout for its COVID-19 vaccine, still aims for 1 billion doses in 2021
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/international-business/us-business/article-johnson-johnson-confident-of-march-rollout-for-its-covid-19-vaccine/

A shot in the arm: pharmacies say they can speed up Canada's vaccination efforts
https://www.cbc.ca/news/politics/tasker-vaccine-rollout-pharmacies-1.5871971

WHO team in Wuhan tracks coronavirus origins as new variants rack up cases
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/who-team-in-wuhan-tracks-coronavirus-origins-as-new-variants-rack-up-cases-1.5267831

Coronavirus infection gives five months' immunity but won't prevent transmission: study
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/world/video-coronavirus-infection-gives-five-months-immunity-but-wont-prevent/

Ventilation report adds to mixed messaging on spread of COVID-19
https://www.thestar.com/business/2021/01/13/ventilation-report-adds-to-mixed-messaging-on-spread-of-covid-19.html

Why months of 'Stay Home' messaging didn’t work in Ontario
https://www.macleans.ca/society/health/why-months-of-stay-home-messaging-didnt-work-in-ontario/
The COVID messaging contained a preponderance of confusing and unhelpful information, known in common parlance as BS. The results were disastrous.

Doug Ford’s ‘unlockdown’ reveals his true agenda
https://www.thestar.com/opinion/contributors/2021/01/14/doug-fords-unlockdown-reveals-his-true-agenda.html

Hidden camera reveals 'appalling' conditions in overseas PPE factory supplying Canadian hospitals, expert says
https://www.cbc.ca/news/world/marketplace-overseas-personal-protective-equipment-manufacturing-working-conditions-1.5873213

Toronto's Population Declined So Much Recently That It Actually Set A Record
https://www.narcity.com/en-ca/news/toronto/torontos-population-declined-so-much-recently-that-it-actually-set-a-record

(Digital) Deception

Does this news explain why Bitcoin prices spiked last week starting Jan. 5th, and then dropped again? Should we be concerned that there is a fresh spike starting January 13th?
Far-right groups received large Bitcoin payment ahead of U.S. Capitol riot: report
https://globalnews.ca/news/7577631/us-capitol-riot-bitcoin-far-right/
If so, what are the prospects for the price of Bitcoin if governments actually crack down on U.S. domestic terrorism and get serious about combating cybercrime?

Critics denounce 'climate-change denialism' reports commissioned by Alberta inquiry
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/edmonton/alberta-inquiry-reports-commissioned-critics-1.5873580

Cyber Security Today – The DarkMarket criminal website shut down, hacker gets 12 years in jail, digital currency thefts and more
https://www.itworldcanada.com/article/cyber-security-today-the-darkmarket-criminal-website-shut-hacker-gets-12-years-in-prison-digital-currency-thefts-and-more/440713

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
“Lots of people wait around "for the right time". People don't know that there is no such thing as a right time. Time is never right nor wrong. The only negative factor of time is that you can lose it and the only positive factor of time is that you can seize it.”
~ C. JoyBell C.

;-) Silence is golden.
     Unless you have kids, then silence is just suspicious.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 14, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Day one in Ontario's new state of emergency - COVID-19 'lockdown' theatre, next act
Spent some time today explaining to out of province customers that the new 'lockdown' will have zero impact on what little business I still have since the Ides of March 2020. In practical terms, no impacts on daily life compared to yesterday just following the health guidelines in effect for about 10 months now.

I think I'm going to start calling our Christmas tree and wreath the Lockdown Tree and Lockdown Wreath. I figure we could use some additional brightness (literal) and joy for the next four weeks of darkness (figurative). If you're thinking I'm just putting off the task of taking down the tree and other bits of decoration, I won't argue the point.

Spent hours trying to figure out what the new Ontario rules are and what they really mean. I don't have the energy left to look at numbers. If you want them ...

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

'An absolute gong show': Employees working from home get COVID-19 shot ahead of Toronto doctors, front-line workers
https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/an-absolute-gong-show-employees-working-from-home-get-covid-19-shot-ahead-of-toronto-doctors-front-line-workers-1.5264203

Toronto Mayor John Tory is, like many people, confused by Premier Doug Ford's new lockdown rules
https://www.thestar.com/news/city_hall/2021/01/13/toronto-mayor-john-tory-is-like-many-people-confused-by-premier-doug-fords-new-lockdown-rules.html

Premier's messaging: construction work will be curtailed in new lockdown. Reality:
Construction emerges relatively unscathed by expanded Ontario lockdown, stakeholders say
https://canada.constructconnect.com/dcn/news/associations/2021/01/construction-emerges-relatively-unscathed-by-expanded-ontario-lockdown-stakeholders-say

Government of Ontario: Enhancing Public Health and Workplace Safety Measures in the Provincewide Shutdown
https://files.ontario.ca/moh-enhanced-provincewide-shutdown-2021-01-12-v2.pdf
Go to page 23 to see start of construction exemptions. If you can't find a loophole for your project, you're not really trying.

Montreal woman says officer insisted on searching her lunch bag during curfew stop
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/montreal-police-quebec-curfew-1.5870961

Seven Quebecers test positive for COVID-19 despite first vaccination, heightening questions over delayed boosters
https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/seven-quebecers-test-positive-for-covid-19-despite-first-vaccination-heightening-questions-over-delayed-boosters-1.5265389

Sinovac’s vaccine proven safe and effective in several countries
https://www.globaltimes.cn/page/202101/1212727.shtml
Note source.

Doctor from New Brunswick develops safer, reusable N99 mask
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-brunswick/mask-doctor-rene-caissie-1.5870250

Fortress Fossil Fuels Highlights/Gaslights

Please take 10 minutes and read this article. It's an eye-opener.
Special Report: Explosive Documents Reveal BP Behind Toxic Mauritius Oil Spill
https://www.forbes.com/sites/nishandegnarain/2021/01/06/special-report-explosive-documents-reveal-bp-behind-toxic-mauritius-oil-spill/
Excerpts:
'Newly released documents reveal that BP was behind the toxic oil involved in the Mauritius oil spill in the Indian Ocean last year. Even more troubling are revelations that BP formally blocked the investigation into the fuel that was being used on board the large Japanese bulk carrier.'

'On August 18, Australian officials were sufficiently concerned about the oil. “The oil is toxic to humans as one of its major components will be a mixture (as much as 30-50%) aromatic polyaromatic hydrocarbons (PAHS) of various sorts, all of which are highly acutely and chronically toxic to people and marine life. If not removed from the marine environment, any remaining oil will take a long time to break down and become small sources of long-term chronic ecotoxicity.”'

Now, remember that while the international oil industry sent in minimal response equipment well after the spill event, Mauritians who were not trained in oil spill response waded into the ocean with artisanal oil booms to prevent further spread of the spill, and came in direct contact with large quantities of the toxic VLSFO. Local first responders will be on scene first. They should be trained and equipped for the hazards.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
https://www.linkedin.com/pulse/smartness-redefined-dr-gopinath-chandroth/

;-) Some men say that women should come with instructions.
     What's the point of that? Have you ever seen a man
     actually read the instructions??

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 13, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Per the COVID-19 Vaccination Tracker, about 1% of Canadians have received at least one dose of the vaccine (either Moderna or Pfizer-BionTech) as of yesterday. PEI leads at 2.6% of their population with at least one dose injected.
https://covid19tracker.ca/vaccinationtracker.html

Feds publish coronavirus vaccine distribution list, painting rollout picture for coming months
https://globalnews.ca/news/7569093/coronavirus-vaccine-rollout-delivery-list-website/

Ontario to receive at least 814,125 additional doses by the end of February.

The Ontario provincial government decides to ignore a lot of health advice and continue with 'COVID theatre'. Yesterday, the Premier declared a new emergency, lockdown-lite guidance now deemed to be orders, and fines will be levied, presumably to increase government revenues. Construction work will be allowed to continue. New interpretation of 'essential' vs. 'non-essential construction' work to be provided later? No mention of paid sick leave, which many health experts have recommended as a measure to reduce virus spread. Classes will continue on-line. Retail remains open under specific protocols.

Ontario declares emergency amid surging COVID-19 cases as Canada buys more vaccines
https://www.reuters.com/article/health-coronavirus-canada-ontario/update-2-ontario-declares-emergency-amid-surging-covid-19-cases-as-canada-buys-more-vaccines-idUSL1N2JN1OX
"Effective Thursday, January 14, 2021 at 12:01 a.m., the government is issuing a stay-at-home order requiring everyone to remain at home with exceptions for permitted purposes or activities, such as going to the grocery store or pharmacy, accessing health care services, for exercise or for work where the work cannot be done remotely. This order and other new and existing public health restrictions are aimed at limiting people's mobility and reducing the number of daily contacts with those outside an immediate household. In addition to limiting outings for these purposes, all businesses must ensure that any employee who can work from home, does work from home."

From my perspective, that looks an awful lot like the pre-existing guidance. Restaurants, retail, etc. can remain open with restrictions, which don't seem to have changed (e.g. no dining in, only pickup and delivery for restaurants). Really, what's changed? More fines and enforcement? No mention of improved communications to the public. No mention I could see of further restrictions on out-of-country or additional travel restrictions or additional screening measures for incoming travellers from outside Canada. Three weeks ago, that was the Premier's whipping post for the big jump in new cases, totally unsupported by data. Evictions will continue. Additional space for shelters for the homeless to provide the requisite physical distancing is not mentioned. Pandemic pay premiums for public-facing jobs not mentioned. Additional provision of PPE for workers and public not mentioned.
Take care of you.

Doug Ford made his choice. And he knows who to blame — you
https://www.theifp.ca/news-story/10307231-bruce-arthur-doug-ford-made-his-choice-and-he-knows-who-to-blame-you/

The timing is also suspect. For real benefit a real lockdown should have been implemented in October-November, before 'flu season' to really suppress the virus level and transmission. While a couple of days don't make a trend, we seem to have seen a peak in Ontario for new cases on January 8 - exactly 2 weeks after Christmas.
see https://covid19on.ca/assets/images/image03.jpg

This trend was visible to people like me before yesterday's announcement. Presumably, the provincial government has better data and analysts at their disposal.

As you may recall, the Premier set us up so that Christmas would be a super-spreader event by invoking the sham lockdown on Boxing Day, despite advice to make it effective before Christmas Day. Since the January 8th peak, we have seen a slow but fairly steady decline in new cases (though there has also been a marked decline in the number of tests done during the same period).

New Zealand reported 3 new cases on January 11th. Canada reported 7,892 new cases the same day, and 136 deaths. New Zealand has not recorded a COVID-19 death since September 16th. TANZANC.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Japan has found a new Covid variant. Here’s how it compares to virus strains in the UK, South Africa
https://www.cnbc.com/2021/01/11/japan-covid-variant-how-it-compares-to-strains-in-uk-south-africa.html

Sinovac's vaccine efficacy less than 60% in Brazil trial -report
https://www.reuters.com/article/us-health-coronavirus-coronavac/sinovacs-vaccine-efficacy-less-than-60-in-brazil-trial-report-idINKBN29G14W

Why did Ontario COVID-19 rates surge after Christmas? New cellphone mobility data offers some clues
https://www.toronto.com/news-story/10305304-why-did-ontario-covid-19-rates-surge-after-christmas-new-cellphone-mobility-data-offers-some-clues/

Health-care workers battled burnout before COVID-19 — now it's even worse, experts warn
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/health-care-workers-burnout-covid-19-1.5869072

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Seek out inspiring people. I met Marcelo da Luz in 2012. The Power of One can be amazing!
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/man-pulls-solar-powered-car-to-ottawa-1.1275095
https://www.xof1.com/

;-) Cleaning with kids in the house is like brushing your teeth while
     eating Oreos.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 12, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Canada moved past 17,000 deaths from COVID-19 on Monday. The U.S. has tallied up over 375,000 deaths.

NL Reports No New Cases of COVID-19 on Monday
https://vocm.com/2021/01/11/covid-update-jan-11/

This is what a major sporting event looks like in Australia in recent weeks: the stands are full of paying spectators. (November 23, 2020)
"The State Of Origin fixture is arguably the biggest occasion on the rugby league calendar. Though coronavirus has decimated the live sporting events across the globe, the 2020 chapter proved to be like what was held in a pre-COVID world."

Australia reported 10 new cases of COVD-19 on Jan. 10. Canada: 7,816.

TANZANC: it works.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Quebec doctor’s death by suicide sends shockwaves through Canada’s medical community
https://globalnews.ca/news/7569318/coronavirus-doctor-karine-dion/

COVID-19 case numbers suggest growing disparity between provinces
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2021/01/10/news/provincial-covid-19-case-numbers-growing-disparity

B.C. surpasses 1,000 COVID-19 deaths as province adds 1,475 new cases
https://globalnews.ca/news/7568869/bc-coronavirus-update-jan-11-2021/

Doug Ford, take note: ‘stay home’ messaging under COVID-19 means nothing for workers without paid sick days
https://www.thestar.com/opinion/contributors/2021/01/12/doug-ford-take-note-stay-home-messaging-under-covid-19-means-nothing-for-workers-without-paid-sick-days.html

Climate Change

Fortress Fossil Fuel is warming up it's megaphone to convince Canadians that they can't afford the federal government's 'carbon tax' going up in annual increments. What we really can't afford is the damage that will come if we don't seriously address climate change globally, which puts the natural gas industry in the cross-hairs of real action, followed by the oil industry. The reality is, the feebate system is the 'free-market' tool that industry said they wanted years ago, rather than caps on production. The proposed system is phased in over years, giving consumers time to adjust, and the numbers stretching out into the future give a certainly and stability for financial analysis that the oil industry certainly doesn't offer its customers for its products. One thing you can count on, the sooner you make the investments to shift from gas and oil to sustainable energy, the sooner you'll be reducing ongoing related costs.

How homeowners can save energy, money from the feds' climate plan
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/12/29/news/homeowners-save-energy-money-federal-climate-plan
Some of these projects can be partly or fully DIY. Vaccines may mean your unplanned COVID-19 extra time at home may come to an end in a few months.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Right this minute, what is the biggest problem or injustice in your view of the world?
In the next five minutes, come up with ONE thing YOU can do about it. Only one.

;-) COVID-world - lockdown reality:
     My hairstyle is called: I tried.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 11, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

In Ontario, the new COVID modelling numbers are so bad the provincial government is leaking them out day by day in advance of the 'official' release to reduce the impact and outrage they are expecting when the numbers finally become known.
Ontario's new COVID-19 modelling to show ICUs full by early February: sources
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-covid-19-cases-modelling-lockdown-doug-ford-1.5868165

Perhaps we could start with locking down the Ontario Cabinet and government caucus, instead of having them roam around the province doing in-person self-promotion stops, and help them focus on destroying the coronavirus instead of the environment, which was clearly their focus in December - just last month.

Thailand is starting to see a surge in new cases, but until mid-December 2020 was doing very well with only 4,246 cases and 237 deaths out of a population of roughly 70 million people. Preventive measures work pretty well, unless you let your guard down.

Yesterday, Nova Scotia reported zero new COVID-19 cases. Ontario: 3,945 Quebec: 3,127. TANZANC: it works.

The UK has now overtaken the US for the most new cases reported per day.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

'No evidence' of community-spread influenza this season: report
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/no-evidence-of-community-spread-influenza-this-season-report-1.5260407
Again, COVID-19 is 'not just the flu'.

We must be on guard for vaccine horror stories
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-we-must-be-on-guard-for-vaccine-horror-stories/
The anti-vaxxers are still looking for any story to bolster their message. There will be cases where people have reactions to the vaccine injections, but assuming causality from rare and anecdotal correlations (e.g. vaccine unsafe because person killed in traffic accident after injection) don't help us make good decisions.

COVID-19 infection vs. vaccination: Which is better for immunity?
https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/vaccination-infection-covid-19-immunity-1.5865984

Does vitamin D combat Covid?
https://www.msn.com/en-gb/health/medical/does-vitamin-d-combat-covid/ar-BB1cCL0n

(Digital) Deception

The reset starts now.
A Truth Reckoning: Why We’re Holding Those Who Lied For Trump Accountable
https://www.forbes.com/sites/randalllane/2021/01/07/a-truth-reckoning-why-were-holding-those-who-lied-for-trump-accountable/?sh=13bd11705710
I have tried to stay away from the Trumpolitik here, as it did not need another megaphone. However, as so much of the COVID-19 disinformation found roots or fertile ground in the same base, I applaud the idea a swing toward holding the liars to account, instead of rewarding them.

Scientists fought coronavirus, now they face the battle against disinformation
https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2020/dec/28/scientists-fought-coronavirus-now-they-face-the-battle-against-disinformation

EU top diplomat accuses Russia of spreading COVID-19 disinformation to sell its vaccine
https://nationalpost.com/news/world/eus-borrell-accuses-russia-of-spreading-covid-19-disinformation-to-sell-its-vaccine

A Century After Phony Flu Ads, Companies Hype Dubious Covid Cures
https://www.nytimes.com/2020/12/24/business/media/dubious-covid-cures.html
If you make your way through this article, you'll find a reproduction of an advertisement by the Ottawa Electric Co.

Never say ‘fake news!’ Plus other advice from Taiwan on countering disinformation.
https://www.thestar.com/news/canada/2020/12/24/never-say-fake-news-plus-other-advice-from-taiwan-on-countering-disinformation.html

A data-based dismantling of Jason Kenney's foreign-funding conspiracy theory
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2019/10/03/analysis/data-based-dismantling-jason-kenneys-foreign-funding-conspiracy-theory

Harper government's extensive spying on anti-oilsands groups revealed in FOIs
https://www.vancouverobserver.com/politics/harper-governments-extensive-spying-anti-oilsands-groups-revealed-fois

Department of Homeland Security: China using TCL TVs to spy on Americans
https://www.tomsguide.com/news/tcl-wolf-dhs-china-bashing

Kingold Jewelry secures US$2.8 billion in loans with gilded copper bars, in latest fraud that embarrasses China, irks US
https://www.scmp.com/business/companies/article/3091185/kingold-jewelry-secures-usus-28-billion-loans-gold-plated-copper

Facebook bug exposed personal information of Instagram users
https://mobilesyrup.com/2020/12/20/facebook-bug-exposed-personal-information-instagram-users/

4 Ways to Prevent a SolarWinds-Style Hack From Hitting Your Small Business
https://www.inc.com/kiersten-todt/4-ways-to-prevent-a-solarwinds-style-hack-from-hitting-your-small-business.html

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Is there an official - someone with any degree of power - who has done something that really irks you? Say some holiday travel hyprocrisy as an example? Take 3 minutes, find their email address, and let them know. Vent a little (but not a lot, be civil).
Then, think of an official you think has been doing a good job, find their email, and send them a heartfelt thank you. You'll blow their minds, make their week, and encourage them to keep up the kind of action that has been benefitting you.

;-) https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fn3KWM1kuAw
     Silly robots. Too early for a victory dance over the humans.
     Robots are based on computers, and computers can get viruses, too.
     Also, so far, robots are repaired by humans.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 10, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Canada COVID-19 Saturday (weekend reporting means numbers are likely undercounts).
8,125 new cases; total over 650,000.
126 new deaths; 16,833 cumulative.
Active cases: 81,670

UK sees record daily COVID deaths, London hospitals on brink
https://www.reuters.com/article/uk-health-coronavirus-britain-london-idUKKBN29D1NZ
"Khan said there were parts of London where 1 in 20 people had the virus."

With a population of 98 million, Vietnam has reported a total of 1,514 cases of COVID-19 and 35 deaths through the entire pandemic. Vietnam is not an island, and it shares a long border with China. Our elected leaders chose the paths we are on wherever we live.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

76 per cent of hospitalized COVID-19 patients experience symptoms six months later: study
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/76-per-cent-of-hospitalized-covid-19-patients-experience-symptoms-six-months-later-study-1.5259865

Doug Ford, in a COVID trap of his own making, needs more than desperation to get us out
https://www.newhamburgindependent.ca/news-story/10304872-bruce-arthur-doug-ford-in-a-covid-trap-of-his-own-making-needs-more-than-desperation-to-get-us-out/

Climate Change

Today's weather report brought to you by climate change
Strongest low in the world heading towards Alaska
https://www.theweathernetwork.com/ca/news/article/trongest-low-in-the-world-heading-towards-alaska

Snow blizzard kills 4, brings much of Spain to a standstill.
https://www.ctvnews.ca/world/snow-blizzard-kills-4-brings-much-of-spain-to-a-standstill-1.5260251

Snow traps 1,000 drivers in frozen traffic jam
https://www.bbc.com/news/world-asia-55359771

Sea-level rise from climate change could exceed the high-end projections, scientists warn
https://www.cbsnews.com/news/climate-change-rising-sea-levels-worst-case-projections/

CO2 levels this year '50 percent higher than 18th century'.
https://phys.org/news/2021-01-co2-year-percent-higher-18th.html

2020 ties with 2016 as world's hottest year on record [in spite of pandemic]
https://www.cbc.ca/news/technology/copernicus-hottest-year-1.5865911

Exxon Holds Back on Technology That Could Slow Climate Change
https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/exxon-holds-back-technology-could-152606182.html

Proposed wind farm near Brooks would be largest in Canada
https://medicinehatnews.com/news/local-news/2020/12/24/proposed-wind-farm-near-brooks-would-be-largest-in-canada/

For CO2 Reduction From Existing Buildings, Heat Pumps Are Better Than Efficiency
https://cleantechnica.com/2020/12/28/for-co2-reduction-from-existing-buildings-heat-pumps-are-better-than-efficiency/

It's an interesting piece. However, given the premise that the objective is to reduce GHG emissions more than it's about simple financial payback, I disagree with the headline conclusion. The better solution is to do both, but do the big efficiency changes first, and then shift to the heat pump, in a relatively short time period (say 2 years). I 'm not going to debate the detailed numbers, I'm just laying out some broad thoughts.

If the power goes out, the efficiency gains will still be working for you when the heat pump can't.

Sizing a heat pump to fit the load is an important factor in how efficient the heat pump will be in operation. Lots of short duty cycles due to an oversized unit will shorten life. It's entirely possible that in a house built to a 1970s or earlier code can reap enormous heating cost savings from a super-insulated attic upgrade, weather-sealing and going to energy-efficient windows and doors. Those changes are relatively inexpensive, and can reduce heating energy demand by half or more on an annual basis. It did for us. Which means we have historically had problems finding a furnace or central air conditioner sized small enough for our needs. If we had bought one before our upgrades, it would be oversized for our needs now.

The typical energy efficiency upgrades can be DIY projects, meaning you can reduce the labour costs.

In my opinion, the big win at the end is the shutting down of the natural gas connection, which cuts the fugitive emissions associated with that consumption, and the continuing shifts to greening the grid which make the heat pump a lower GHG choice year after year.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Find something small to finish. Take something off your 'to-do list', and enjoy the sense of accomplishment.

;-) COVID-world - where a trip to the grocery store now feels like
     a solo mission behind enemy lines.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 9, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Canada reported over 9,200 more cases on Friday. The world will likely exceed 90 million cumulative cases today, and 2 million deaths this coming week. It's not 'just the flu' or a 'left-wing media hoax'.

Almost 7% of the U.S. population has been infected now. Over 1 in a 1,000 have died of COVID-19. Over 300,000 new cases were reported on Friday - a single day. The average U.S. COVID-19 death count over the past 4 days has been over 4,000 per day. Four thousand DEATHS per day.

On Friday, Taiwan reported 828 cases. That's their total for the entire pandemic, not a single day. Taiwan has suffered a total of 7 deaths from COVID-19, and none during the second wave. That's because Taiwan has some adults in the rooms where important decisions are being made.

A new data point to track - vaccination doses delivered. There is going to be confusion here as the provinces are not being consistent about reserving 2nd doses for those getting their first dose, so the best we can measure is injections given, not full courses of vaccinations.

As of late Friday, Canada has administered at least 261,234 doses.
https://covid19tracker.ca/vaccinationtracker.html
That link also provides a chart showing progress by province and territory.

This is a cause for tempered celebration, not rancour. The metric to measure against is not having every Canadian vaccinated today. Remember, a year ago, we were still thinking this was isolated in China, not a pandemic. Six months ago, we were hoping for vaccines by late 2022. Today, we're injecting tested and approved vaccines - with more in the pipeline - into arms as quickly as supplies and provincial delivery systems permit. That is amazing!

A year from now, politicians and mainstream media in Canada will be whining about how much the federal government spent to obtain the vaccine supplies. That's what normal looks like in Canada, and it's OK, so long as the whiners acknowledge how lucky they are to be among the survivors, in part because those vaccines were purchased and delivered.

For the near future, in my opinion, a province with smart leaders would be posting daily the number of vaccinations delivered by priority list category. It's going to be a huge morale boost when they can post 90%+ vaccinated in the top tier, then the second tier, and so on. That's a recipe for a diet of good news for one facet of the COVID-19 catastrophe, and if managed correctly, an incentive for people to stick to preventive measures that work until they can be vaccinated and have time for the immunity to take effect.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Majority of Canadians in recent poll support stricter COVID-19 lockdowns, hefty fines for rulebreakers
https://nationalpost.com/news/majority-of-canadians-in-recent-poll-support-stricter-covid-19-lockdowns-hefty-fines-for-rulebreakers

I wonder how much of these poll results are driven by anger at recent high-profile rule breakers being caught and exposed. I worry that we are mistaking draconian measures taken too late, for the leadership that was missing from May to November 2020 in the plague provinces. We are in a health emergency. We do need to take strong counter-measures against the virus. We also need to understand what works against the spread of the virus, and how we got to this sorry state in most of Canada.

We knew the second wave was coming. Our health officials knew it would be worse than the March-June 2020 episode because it would get a full winter to wreak havoc. We knew it would be world-wide. But, for the most part, our plague province elected 'leadership' did little to prepare. Many will point fingers at the federal government - it's an easy target and officials there admit their response has not been perfect. Yet, some parts of Canada managed to do much better for their populations (the ANC of TANZANC) than the plague provinces. That is worthy of study, so we can learn what worked, and should be emulated elsewhere. TANZANC: the lessons are out there.

On a positive note, the vaccines are starting to get to the arms of Canadians who want them. So far, we're resisting the call for forced vaccinations. We are recognizing there are people who probably should not take the vaccine, or at least the first two approved for use in Canada.

It appears the volumes will be increasing this month and in the near future for those 2 vaccines, and more are yet likely to be approved in weeks to come. It appears that the provinces are now ramping up their vaccine delivery capacity. Instead of whining about a pipeline which may be empty for a day or two, they should be building a delivery system that copes with that world-wide uncertainty, and will be able to embrace the AstraZeneca/UK vaccine when it arrives, and the Johnson&Johnson vaccine, and then others still in trials. Canadians need to see an approach to vaccinations that implies competence (e.g. a published plan that takes uncertainty into account), not panic (e.g. finger-pointing). Don't turn the vaccines miracle into another catastrophe. Keep reinforcing the message that we need to suppress the spread of infections until the vaccines are here in sufficient quantity and had time to take effect. Let's understand why there will be priority lists, and that with early vaccinations, there come obligations.

Let's also keep front-of-mind, the first injection does not confer immunity. Even after the second injection and time for it to take effect (weeks), the efficacy rates are not 100%.

Yes, you can still get infected with COVID-19 after being vaccinated. Here's why
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/yes-you-can-still-get-infected-with-covid-19-after-being-vaccinated-here-s-why-1.5259495

We have already seen the stories of individuals who got the first shot, and then became sick with COVID-19. That's to be expected where we gave the infection the second-wave head-start. Also be prepared to hear about people who got both shots, and then got sick with COVID-19. The vaccine will not be effective for everyone; we expect it not to work for about 1 in 20 based on the data from the trials.

No unexpected side-effects from COVID-19 shots given in Canada so far: Health Canada
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/no-unexpected-side-effects-from-covid-19-shots-given-in-canada-so-far-health-canada-1.5258977

Post-infection coronavirus immunity usually robust after 8 months, study shows
https://www.washingtonpost.com/health/post-infection-coronavirus-immunity-usually-robust-after-8-months-study-shows/2021/01/07/d7d369a6-511a-11eb-b96e-0e54447b23a1_story.html

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
Need a personal resolution for 2021? How about making an
effort to elect and appoint adults to positions of power?

;-) COVID-world - COVID-19 health messaging sounds
     a bit like my parents when I was a child.
     You're grounded. Wash your hands. Again, properly this time.
     Don't touch that. Eat your (vitamin D) vegetables.
     No, you can't go play with your friends.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 8, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Canada surpassed 16,500 COVID-19 deaths on Wednesday. World-wide that number is over 1.9 million.

Ontario - sigh - on Thursday reported new single-day records for new cases (3,519) and deaths (89) and 10,452 people hospitalized with COVID-19, a 5% jump from the day before. Given the typical 2-week incubation period, we should start seeing the results of Christmas gatherings this coming week.

The shocking truth about this virus is that Canadians aren't being shocked enough
https://nationalpost.com/opinion/john-ivison-the-shocking-truth-about-this-virus-is-that-canadians-arent-being-shocked-enough

Stopping the spread of COVID-19 misinformation is the best 2021 New Year’s resolution
https://theconversation.com/stopping-the-spread-of-covid-19-misinformation-is-the-best-2021-new-years-resolution-152739

Alberta health minister, top doctor address COVID-19 vaccine 'misinformation' circulating online
https://globalnews.ca/video/7557654/alberta-health-minister-top-doctor-address-covid-19-vaccine-misinformation-circulating-online

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

1 In 3 Ontario Nursing Homes Now Have COVID-19 Outbreaks
https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/ontario-long-term-care-outbreaks_ca_5ff31831c5b65a922910149e

Ontario preparing to transfer hospital patients out of regions worst-hit by COVID-19
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/toronto/ontario-transfer-patients-1.5865452
The cynical part of my brain read this as ensuring that no part of Ontario, no matter the measures they took or what success they had in controlling virus spread, will now have plenty of it transferred to them via patient transfers from heavily affected regions. This is precisely the opposite of the previous 'iron ring' containment plan which has failed to protect long-term care homes in Ontario in particular. For contrast ...

Some Places Are Beating COVID-19. How All of Canada Can, Too
https://thetyee.ca/Analysis/2020/11/16/Some-Places-Beating-COVID-Can-Canada/ TANZANC. It works. Check the data.

'They're not machines': Deaths of health-care workers underline the strain of COVID-19
https://www.ctvnews.ca/health/coronavirus/they-re-not-machines-deaths-of-health-care-workers-underline-the-strain-of-covid-19-1.5258509

Why Canada's seniors need the coronavirus vaccine so urgently
https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/seniors-coronavirus-vaccines-variant-urgent-1.5863190

Pfizer study suggests vaccine works against virus variant
https://apnews.com/article/international-news-coronavirus-pandemic-coronavirus-vaccine-3094dd3cc91b4a20780402476cdcb5ae

Two Chinese cities sealed off to squash virus outbreak
https://medicalxpress.com/news/2021-01-chinese-cities-virus-outbreak.html
Expect new shortages of PPE as China will once again restrict exports. This is why we needed to be ramping up domestic production through the first wave and summer, but apparently have not on a large scale. Watch for a repeat of the March-May 2020 international bidding wars, scams, and counterfeits.

Vitamin D supplementation found to reduce COVID-19-related mortality, says study
https://www.news-medical.net/post.aspx?id=859657f6-3646-4e64-8cc5-8c517291e644

PPE

Ontario government didn't replenish PPE stockpiles before COVID-19: LTC commission
https://toronto.ctvnews.ca/ontario-government-didn-t-replenish-ppe-stockpiles-before-covid-19-ltc-commission-1.5257756

Nurses call for more access to PPE as new COVID-19 strain reaches B.C.
https://www.citynews1130.com/2020/12/28/b-c-nurses-new-strain/

This Montreal man is cleaning up the city one mask at a time
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/masks-montreal-litter-picking-up-1.5854878

The Most Popular Mask May Also Be the Least Effective, Study Finds
https://www.yahoo.com/lifestyle/most-popular-mask-may-least-181351492.html

Lack of PPE contributes to outbreak
https://blackburnnews.com/windsor/windsor-news/2020/12/16/lack-ppe-contributes-outbreak/

Researchers find cheap, easy way to disinfect N95 masks
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MP12rd5Q_fU

Thousands of shipping containers of surplus PPE moved to railway station after blocking up ports
https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2020/12/18/thousands-shipping-containers-surplus-ppe-moved-railway-station/

Canadian Inmates Have Made 821703 Face Masks During The Pandemic
https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/canada-prison-labour-covid-face-masks_ca_5fdd1a5ac5b6e5158fa70360

Pandemic sewing surge is a chance to rediscover the practical arts
https://theconversation.com/pandemic-sewing-surge-is-a-chance-to-rediscover-the-practical-arts-148246

Businesses faced ruin from the pandemic. Then Canada came calling for vital supplies
https://www.cbc.ca/news/business/covid-peacetime-industrial-mobilization-1.5845781

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
If you're not feeling lonely, you likely know someone who is. Reach out with a phone call, a text, an e-mail or drop a note in a mailbox.

;-) COVID-world - Reasons to love working from home:
     1) You have work.
     2) You have a home.
     Everything else is a bonus.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 7, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Yesterday, 4 Americans died during the invasion of the Capitol building in Washington DC.
4,100 Americans were reported to have died of COVID-19. A new single-day record. This is no longer newsworthy.

Both were enabled by widespread disinformation propagated by politicians, mass media and social media. There is a duty on those with power to use it legally, ethically and wisely. The failures are many.

2 charged with assault of Walmart clerk who asked customers to wear masks: RCMP
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/walmart-face-masks-dawson-creek-bc-rcmp-assault-charges-1.5861990

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Immune but infectious: Can someone vaccinated against COVID-19 still spread the virus?
https://globalnews.ca/news/7559408/health-matters-covid-19-vaccine-immune-but-infectious/
"El Sahly was one of the lead investigators for Moderna’s late-stage COVID-19 vaccine trial. She says the novel coronavirus can live in the nasal passage for weeks, meaning a vaccinated person could still infect others, even if they don’t get sick."

The second wave is a privilege pandemic, fuelled by Canadians who see COVID-19 as someone else's problem
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/article-the-second-wave-is-a-privilege-pandemic-fuelled-by-canadians-who-see/

The fast-spreading mutant COVID-19 strain is a '2021 nightmare': researchers
https://nationalpost.com/news/the-fast-spreading-mutant-covid-19-strain-is-a-2021-nightmare-researchers

California funeral homes run out of space as COVID-19 rages
https://www.stltoday.com/news/national/california-funeral-homes-run-out-of-space-as-covid-19-rages/article_17b17f68-3a83-5d2c-8ffd-41058bf3c764.html

Fortress Fossil Fuels Highlights/Gaslights

Geopolitics Of Nuclear Generation Delayed Renewables By Decades To Fossil Fuel Industry Benefit, Our Detriment
https://cleantechnica.com/2020/12/28/geopolitics-of-nuclear-generation-delayed-renewables-by-decades-to-fossil-fuel-industry-benefit-our-detriment/

Canadian LNG is full of hot air
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/12/11/opinion/canadian-lng-development-full-hot-air
This article quotes the methane global warming potential multiplier relative to CO2 as 86 over a 20 year time frame. We don't have 20 years to turn things around on GHG emissions per the UNFCCC, which is perennial optimistic. Methane is most potent in its first 10 years in the atmosphere, so the figure we should be using in such discussions is 130.
[See graph at https://forum.arctic-sea-ice.net/index.php?action=dlattach;topic=2383.0;attach=106920]

That number changes the conversation around fugitive emissions, which are increasingly being proven to be much higher by 3rd party observations than the gas industry has reported. Given that the typical life of methane in the atmosphere is about 10 years, an immediate, focused effort on eliminating methane storage and transport would pay huge dividends in terms of climate change mitigation by 2030. A requirement to flare methane emissions from oil production rather than vent them would also bring big benefits.

Two other initiatives would also have massive benefits: deep energy efficiency retrofits to our existing building stock, followed by a shift from oil and gas heating (space and water) to air-source heat pumps, either on a district basis or by individual building.

Methane is more dangerous than carbon dioxide — the gas index can help
https://thehill.com/opinion/energy-environment/531983-methane-is-more-dangerous-than-carbon-dioxide-the-gas-index-can

Coal Continues To Take It On The Chin As Investors Flee
https://cleantechnica.com/2020/12/20/coal-continues-to-take-it-on-the-chin-as-investors-flee/<
Let me repeat, global coal use is not declining out of any good-hearted desire to reduce catastophic climate change and improve the chances for survival of our species. Coal consumption is declining because it is now more expensive than natural gas for heating and solar and wind power for electricity generation.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
And then January 6, 2021 happened in Washington, D.C.
And Salem, Oregon; Atlanta, Georgia; Salt Lake City, Utah; Topeka, Kansas; Phoenix, Arizona; Little Rock, Arkansas; Tallahassee, Florida; Madison, Wisconsin; Columbia, South Carolina; Santa Fe, New Mexico ...
Bad information leads to bad decisions.

"The best way we can show respect for the voters who are upset is by telling them the truth."
 Mitt Romney 2021.01.06

;-) COVID lockdown activities:
     I have removed all the bad food from the house.
     It was delicious.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 6, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

Quebec headed for full lockdown, curfews beginning Saturday: report
https://montrealgazette.com/news/local-news/quebec-headed-for-full-lockdown-curfews-beginning-saturday-report

Bodies stored in refrigerated trailer after morgue in London, Ont., reaches capacity
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/london/bodies-stored-trailer-london-1.5861544

Ontario Opens 1st Field Hospital As Health-Care System Pushed To Limit
https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/burlington-ontario-field-hospital_ca_5ff47f56c5b6fd331111525c

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

The Mutated Virus Is a Ticking Time Bomb
https://www.theatlantic.com/science/archive/2020/12/virus-mutation-catastrophe/617531/

Pfizer pushes back after Quebec delays second vaccine doses; saying data doesn't exist
https://montreal.ctvnews.ca/pfizer-pushes-back-after-quebec-delays-second-vaccine-doses-saying-data-doesn-t-exist-1.5254882

Climate Change

How a $20 bill could be worth close to $308
https://www.corporateknights.com/channels/leadership/how-a-20-green-new-bill-could-be-worth-close-to-308-16007064/

A climate success story: How Alberta got off coal power
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/opinion/editorials/article-a-climate-success-story-how-alberta-got-off-coal-power/
Spoiler alert: sticks and carrots still work.

Geothermal discovery could launch green revolution for energy industry
https://www.cbc.ca/player/play/1837280835770

Researchers Find a Way to Pull Carbon Out of The Air And Turn It Into Jet Fuel
https://www.sciencealert.com/researchers-find-way-to-pull-carbon-out-of-the-air-and-make-it-jet-fuel
Or you could grow plants and make biofuel, while improving the soil for subsequent food crop rotations. The proposed process requires additional energy to create the fuel, and so far, direct-air capture of CO2 from the air is also an energy consuming process. Unless all that energy comes directly and indirectly from zero-GHG sources, it's an exercise in futility. Drop-in biofuels are an off-the-shelf technology today, which can be net-zero-GHG.

How a 'tree mortgage' scheme could turn an Indian town carbon neutral
https://www.theguardian.com/global-development/2020/dec/28/how-a-tree-mortgage-scheme-could-turn-an-indian-town-carbon-neutral

I was the lone Canadian media reporter inside the world climate summit
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2017/11/23/opinion/i-was-lone-canadian-reporter-inside-world-climate-summit

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
COVID-19 has been hard on humans. But it has been something of a bonus for dogs and cats in animal shelters as we seek companionship in pets now denied many of us staying at home.
Appreciate the victories, however small and transient. But watch for the downsides.
2020 has also been a bumper year for Ukrainian puppy mills to export sick animals, a number of which have died in transit.

;-) I dream of a better tomorrow, where chickens can cross the road
     and not be questioned about their motives.
     - unknown

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 5, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

After 7 consecutive days of reporting more than 50,000 cases per day of COVID-19, driven by the recently discovered 'UK variant', the UK is going back into lockdown.
Britain plunged into third national lockdown as of midnight as COVID-19 variant surges
https://nationalpost.com/news/world/britain-plunged-into-national-lockdown-as-of-midnight-as-covid-19-variant-fuels-resurgence

Canada has moved past 600,000 cases and 16,000 deaths. All related rates are rising nationally.

There's some magical thinking going on about the powers of the vaccines, which we seem generally incompetent to actually deliver now that they are available. People actually have to be inoculated for them to work. And because we have given the novel coronavirus so many hosts to work with, due to inaction driven by disinformation, the mutations are happening.

U.K. scientists worry vaccines may not protect against coronavirus variant found in South Africa
https://www.cbc.ca/news/health/covid-19-vaccine-south-africa-variant-1.5860585

What part of "don't get infected" and "take preventative measures" do people - including elected officials - not understand? What part of all the numbers going the wrong way doesn't spur truly effective action by our political 'leaders'? Does anyone think the current numbers mean the 'plan' to date in the plague provinces is working?

New 'near zero' COVID approach needed in Canada, argues group of academics
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/2021-canadian-shield-covid-approach-1.5859101

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

This Is How to Vaccinate the World
https://read.nxtbook.com/ieee/spectrum/spectrum_na_january_2021/this_is_how_to_vaccinate_the_.html

Scientists urge provinces to take action to curb aerosol spread of COVID-19
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/experts-ask-provinces-update-health-guidelines-covid-aerosol-airborne-transmission-1.5860809

Six Nations sets up online booking system for COVID-19 tests
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/hamilton/six-nations-of-the-grand-river-booking-covid-19-1.5860506

New Year’s resolution tips for 2021: Focus on getting to the end of COVID-19
https://theconversation.com/new-years-resolution-tips-for-2021-focus-on-getting-to-the-end-of-covid-19-151769

Some small businesses are adapting - and thriving - through the pandemic
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/business/article-some-small-businesses-are-adapting-and-thriving-through-the-pandemic/

Six ways to ‘reboot your brain’ after a hard year of COVID-19 – according to science
https://theconversation.com/six-ways-to-reboot-your-brain-after-a-hard-year-of-covid-19-according-to-science-151332

Haroon Rashid - A Poem
https://miro.medium.com/max/700/1*31hkMB5evUCBn72RYjuI3g.jpeg

For more on the poem: https://medium.com/@authorharoonrashid/we-fell-asleep-in-one-world-and-woke-up-in-another-suddenly-disney-is-out-of-magic-paris-is-no-a3bbdf8c5ff4
For more on the author: https://medium.com/@authorharoonrashid
For the Acquired Deficit Disorder generation, click here:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sqRlWjeqoPw
http://goodnewsplanet.com/wp-content/uploads/2020/08/VID-20200824-WA0009.mp4?_=1
https://youtu.be/iqjASIegN0g
and an Internet search will find a dozen other variants.

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
At the end of each day, before you go to sleep, write down at least thing you are going to do tomorrow.

;-) Recently, out driving on an errand, I was passed by a vehicle doing
     considerably more than the speed limit and partly in my lane.
     In the past, I would have had some choice names to mutter about the
     event.
     Now, I just say to myself, "probably a provincial Cabinet Minister".

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 2, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

We got to 2021, but we haven't beat COVID-19 yet. Canada has moved past 15,600 deaths, the U.S. over 350,000, the world over 1.8 million.

All those daily figures are accelerating.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

The 'UK variant" increasingly looks like cause for serious concern. The UK has reported over 50,000 new cases per day for 4 days in a row - over 212,000 cases in 4 days. The higher transmission rate may not be the only alarming issue for the new variant, now detected in at least 53 countries - including Canada and the U.S.

It appears to impact those under 20 years of age to a greater extent than the original SARS-CoV-2 coronavirus. Letting the virus spread, providing more hosts and jumps, increases the chances of mutations.

New COVID-19 variant growing rapidly in England
https://www.imperial.ac.uk/news/211793/new-covid19-variant-growing-rapidly-england/

Look after yourselves, those near you and those you love. We're not all in this together.

Calgary MLAs Nixon, Fir also travelled to U.S. over holidays
https://calgaryherald.com/news/local-news/calgary-mlas-nixon-fir-also-travelled-to-u-s-over-holidays

From maskless BBQ to Rod Phillips' secret holiday, COVID-19 is revealing a broken social contract
https://www.simcoe.com/news-story/10300007-shawn-micallef-from-maskless-bbq-to-rod-phillips-secret-holiday-covid-19-is-revealing-a-broken-social-contract/

“Those of us who don't die are going to quit”: Overwhelmed hospitals and the nurse who lost hope
https://www.salon.com/2021/01/01/those-of-us-who-dont-die-are-going-to-quit-overwhelmed-hospitals-and-the-nurse-who-lost-hope_partner/

These numbers reveal a worrying trend in Ontario long-term-care home deaths
https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2021/01/01/these-numbers-reveal-a-worrying-trend-in-ontario-long-term-care-home-deaths.html

Fortress Fossil Fuels Highlights/Gaslights

The world's oil industry claims it has a world class system for cleaning up oil spills.
Read this article, and decide for yourself.
https://www.forbes.com/sites/nishandegnarain/2021/12/30/hope-amid-an-oil-spill-the-artisanal-boom-movement-that-sparked-a-social-revolution-in-mauritius/

Possible damage is being downplayed in latest Alberta oil pipeline leak
https://www.rcinet.ca/en/2020/12/30/possible-damage-is-being-downplayed-in-latest-alberta-oil-pipeline-leak/
Closing out 2020 with another episode from the oil industry playbook ...
Energy regulator reports spill of about 400,000 litres of produced water from Alberta pipeline
https://www.theglobeandmail.com/canada/alberta/article-energy-regulator-reports-spill-of-about-400000-litres-of-produced/

New study shows Deepwater Horizon oil spill larger than previously thought
Toxic and invisible oil spread well beyond known satellite footprint, fishing closures https://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2020/02/200212150202.htm

Mauritius Oil Spill Occurred As Ship’s Crew Went Off Track In Search Of Phone Signal – Report
https://www.marineinsight.com/shipping-news/mauritius-oil-spill-occurred-as-ships-crew-went-off-track-in-search-of-phone-signal-report/
My guess: a shrinking oil industry squeezing costs will lead to more shortcuts and maintenance fails, causing more oil spills in future, even as oil production and consumption volumes fall.

UN probes global shipping over toxic fuels
https://thenationonlineng.net/un-probes-global-shipping-over-toxic-fuels/

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
It isn't only you. It's grinding away on all of us. So be a contrarian, and smile at people instead of giving into the natural desire to growl. Smiles and laughter are also contagious, and a lot better for us than COVID-19.

;-) Dear Father Time Chronoware,
     Please provide a replacement for my Year 2020.0 game. I have played
     it to the end, and it appears it cannot be won, as it has a virus.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


January 1, 2021

COVID-19

Warning: these posts are for 'adults'; people with the ability to think for themselves, take responsibility for their actions, and prepared to work for the greater good. If that isn't you, remember to wash your hands and face with soap regularly and don't touch anything. Stay home. The Internet has plenty of content to entertain you.

It's a New Year, but it's the same old stories. More cases, more long-term negative health effects for survivors, more deaths, lots of people who still think and promote the idea the pandemic is a hoax, don't follow health guidance and break isolation/quarantine orders, or feel that their money or position of power exempt them from the rules imposed on others. Clearly, we're not all in this together. The mixed messaging, confusion and disinformation is killing people.

Here's to ending two pandemics in 2021: COVID-19 and disinformation. Each of us can do our part to stop the spread of both.

For current COVID-19 numbers, go to
https://epiforecasts.io/covid/posts/national/canada/
and https://www.worldometers.info/coronavirus/country/canada/ .

COVID-19 News Items

Big for-profit long-term-care companies paid out more than $170 million to investors through Ontario's deadly first wave
https://www.thestar.com/news/gta/2020/12/26/big-for-profit-long-term-care-companies-paid-out-more-than-170-million-to-investors-through-ontarios-deadly-first-wave.html

Dividends still went out even after soldiers marched in to long-term care homes
https://nationalpost.com/news/world/dividends-still-went-out-even-after-soldiers-marched-in-to-long-term-care-homes

Long-Term Care Is 'Dangerous.” What's Ontario's Plan For Alternatives?
https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/entry/ontario-home-care-alternatives_ca_5fdbab0cc5b6094c0ff0682b

Not-for-profit long-term care homes face uncertain future after 2020
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/long-term-care-homes-not-for-profit-1.5855329

Pleas to follow public health rules, from Quebecers who know what happens when you don't
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/montreal/quebec-covid-19-please-follow-the-rules-1.5852395

Sona Nanotech Receives CE Mark Approval for its Rapid COVID-19 Antigen Test
https://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/sona-nanotech-receives-ce-mark-140800305.html
"Halifax, Nova Scotia--(December 31, 2020) - Sona Nanotech Inc. (CSE: SONA), (OTCQB: SNANF) (the "Company", "Sona") a developer of rapid, point-of-care diagnostic tests, has been granted CE Mark status for its rapid, COVID-19 antigen test."
An antigen test checks for an active infection. The saliva version of the antigen test is less invasive than the nasal swab test, and can be performed on-location to provide results within minutes, and no need for sending swabs to remote labs to produce and later report results. Could be useful at airports as part of the pre-boarding security screening, or for visitors to hospitals and long-term care residences - when we get to that stage again.

Carleton athletes connect with isolated seniors during pandemic
https://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/ottawa/carleton-university-athletes-ravens-seniors-mental-health-1.5838748

How the founder of Suppli hopes to fix Toronto's takeout waste woes
https://www.nationalobserver.com/2020/12/30/news/toronto-takeout-waste-suppli-reusable-containers
Learn more at: https://www.mysuppli.ca/

Life is hard. It's harder during the pandemic.
It's official. If you're reading this, you survived 2020. Medals will be awarded when we are allowed to meet in groups again (no, probably not).

;-) Please take your clothes out of your wardrobe regularly,
     air them and allow them to stand in sunlight.
       Recent anecdotal evidence shows that clothes kept in
       wardrobes during lockdown will shrink.

Injection beats infection. But we gave infection a big head-start.
Spread knowledge, not the virus.
Stay well, stay safe, stay sane, stay home if you can.
We're not done yet, but that day is getting closer.
With thanks to those making the effort, every day, for us all.


For earlier entries, see earlier blog file.
For the current blog, see the Econogics Blog.

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