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Honored Advisor
Posts: 11,091
Registered: ‎05-13-2010
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Re: I am not looking down on you

Do you remember the news stories about the new mansion the Gore family built in Tennessee a few years ago?  It was such a clear case of "do as I say, not as I do" that I was amazed that anyone ever listened to anything else he had to say on environmental issues. 

Here my family sits, in a "recycled" house, conserving as much as possible of the embedded energy as we could in basically the same footprint that it took up for over a hundred years.  We made one reasonable small addition for laundry and bathroom facilities, which were functions formerly taken care of "out back." 

We have converted to a bio-renewable heat source, year-round also for our water heat, by harvesting sustainably from our own woodlands; and, even more conservatively, mostly salvaging hardwood knowdowns from pine thinnings for the first major firewood harvest.  I spent considerable time over the past year calculating loads and researching possible solar power installations, but the technology just isn't cost-effective yet.  We bid into a grant cycle fourteen years ago for a bio-meth project with EPA for our lagoons, but they funded landfill gasification projects that year. 

Every open acre we own  that is not under roof is pretty much planted to permanent grass cover, and we've built every conservation structure we can figure out a way to fit onto our farms.  My son ran 49 miles of wire to keep animals form grazing in minor tributaries of the Meherrin River.  Every watering station is paved to prevent soil damage, re-using concrete hog flooring gang slats.  I put one whiole small farm into CP-33, and the neighboring one is a major research site for mining reclamation, under a ten-year university's oversight. 

I am waiting with eagerness for the first electric car with a 250-mile battery for my personal transportation, since we are a hundred miles (conservatively) from my most routine outlying travel points.  I will park my present small, 4-cylinder SUV, and use it then only when necessary for full cargo loads when Detroit/Tokyo/Beijing figure out how to deliver a reliable alternative.  

I've spent fifteen years as an unpaid volunteer advisor to a national estuary program, helped to establish the first ag lands preservation/protection program in our quadrant of the state,  serve on the county committee that oversees it, and hold that board's seat on our county planning board, looking out for farmers and forestry. 

When notified,  I write and/or deliver spoken comments to every environmental and land use reg that I am aware of that I possess knowledge enough about to provide a perspective from the real world.  I will do copiou sresearch to make sure my comments are on point. 

With all of these efforts and more, we are still the most villified farmers in the world- people even cut more slack to coca, heroin poppy and marijuana growers - because we raise hogs in North Carolina.  Al Gore and his ilk treat us like Satan's spawn, all the while sitting in their energy-hog homes, beign drive everywhere by a limo that has to make two trips to haul them for every one, and flying their fat hind parts all over the world, to tout their environmental chops. 

Can you say "hypocrit"?