When I (Em) was in Paris a few months ago, I couldn’t figure out why the bridge behind Notre Dame was covered in thousands of tiny padlocks (plus a few bike locks). They weren’t there when Lo and I visited back in 2004. A quick bit of Googling (thanks to “wee-fee,” as the French call wifi) and I learned that they were “love locks” — a fairly recent tradition wherein couples celebrate their love (and, perhaps, hope to ensure its survival) by affixing a padlock to a romantic bridge and tossing the key into the river below. They might also attach a ribbon to the padlock, or simply adorn it with their initials. When I was there, enterprising young salespeople were selling new padlocks at each end of the bridge in case you were moved to do the same.
Did you know it’s International Compost Awareness Week? Yeah, just found out myself… but agree that composting is a topic worthy of celebration and education. Most of us probably associate the word with backyard bins and piles (or smells coming from the neighbors’ bins or piles), but it’s also turning into a big business… largely because both large waste haulers and smart entrepreneurs are recognizing not only the demand for this “black gold,” but also that the raw materials are available for free.
As Companies Gather for Shareholder Meetings, Opposition to Bristol Bay Mine Mounts
Full Frontal Fashion editor Kelley Culp has three perfectly functional and stylish suggestions on what to wear out in Utah: To be honest, Park City Utah is not a fashion mecca. Nor should it be. It’s a skiing town that happens to have a big festival each year, and for that week, we all care…
Bryce Canyon National Park, Utah. (Photo credit: AFP/Getty Images)
Imagine: A massive open-pit coal mine next to a wilderness jewel. A scenario like that might have been routine in the past, but this is the 21st century, when many cleaner, more sustainable ways to power our economy abound. We no longer have to sacrifice an iconic landscape in order to burn some dirty rocks.
And yet a mining company got approval last month to open Utah’s first-ever strip mine for coal in the small community of Alton. Few new coal mines have opened in the West in the past decade since most developers focus on expanding existing mines, not reaching into untouched wilderness. And that’s what makes this mine so troubling: it will be located 10 miles from Bryce Canyon National Park.
The truth is we don’t need this coal. The developers claim they have a contract with a Utah utility, but they won’t disclose which one. It’s questionable whether local utilities even have the need for such sizeable quantities of coal. Instead, rumors indicate that a lot of the coal will be hauled to a West Coast port for shipping, possibly overseas. If the company is so confident there is a market for its product, it should name its buyers.
The West has a long history of outside companies extracting local resources, selling them elsewhere, and leaving nearby communities to clean up the mess often at taxpayer expense. No matter what they might tell you, there is no reclamation plan that can return an open pit mine to a natural, wild state. Once that untamed spirit is gone, it’s gone for good.
Some places are simply too special to industrialize. Bryce country is one of them.
Article: Solar-powered Mormons
No doubt, you’ve heard stories about the evangelical “creation care” movement, and perhaps even efforts by Jewish and Islamic groups to incorporate environmental practices and teachings into the practice of their faiths. But the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-Day Saints (aka the Mormons)? Well, they do ride bicycles when knocking on doors…
Turns out the Mormons have been thinking green in terms of their meetinghouses and buildings for quite some time… and a new pilot project involves putting solar panels on churches.
Article: Will Mormons a see gay-marriage doc?
In his review of 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION, a documentary about the Mormon Church’s campaign to pass Prop. 8, the ballot initiative outlawing gay marriage in California, Variety’s Peter Debruge writes that the film is “mostly preaching to the converted.”
“Although controversy could spur interest, the pic hasn’t been as incendiary as one might expect playing just north of LDS HQ at the Sundance Film Festival,” Debruge asserts.
He may have spoken too soon.
Paula Froelich and Utah Trannies in Park City to support 8: THE MORMON PROPOSITION
I feel like a gang of roudy elephants held a party in my head last night and forgot to clean up. Some musings after the jump…
To help states develop strategies that will improve the energy efficiency of existing buildings and reduce costs and emissions, the National Governors Association Center for Best Practices today announced that six states have been selected to participate in the Policy Academy on State Building Efficiency Retrofit Programs.
I have welcomed several promising signs coming out of the Obama Administration, from the president’s push for clean energy to Interior Secretary Salazar’s efforts to block oil and gas leasing near some of Utah’s most stunning landscapes. But there is still something I am waiting to see: a bold new vision for preserving America’s wilderness.…
image credit: the russians are here
used under a creative commons license
Anyone who knows Utah knows the power of wind, water and sun. You can see that power in Utah’s sculpted arches of stone, in our majestic mountains capped with snow, and in the cracked earth of our deserts.
Nature’s power is so obvious that you have to wonder why we’ve mostly ignored it as a source of energy to run our homes and businesses, and to propel our cars and trucks.