2017 February 06

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February 2017
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Questions? Need an updated map? Email me andy@andyarthur.org.

“Taking the 9:45 PM bus home this evening, listening to Steve Miller’s Jet Airliner, thinking you got to go through hell to get heaven. At least I got out of the office by 9:45 PM. Had to run a bit to the bus stop though. I feared it would be later, and I almost thought about taking Big Red Downtown. But I didn’t because I hate driving my big jacked up truck in the city.”

Good evening! Partly cloudy and around two degrees freezing point in City of Albany. Calm wind.The skies will clear around 8 pm. Not a terrible evening, not too cold for early February.

I know I say this every night I work late, but the best thing the city has done this century was fix the damn streetlights downtown. Not standing in darkness at the bus stop makes you feel less likely to be mugged after dark. Not only did the city replace all the many bulbs that were out, they replaced many of the dim bulbs. And the bus authority added bright solar lamps into the bus stop.

Tonight will be mostly cloudy, with a low of 26 degrees at 4am. 10 degrees above normal. North wind around 5 mph becoming calm in the evening. In 2016, it got down to 24 degrees under partly cloudy skies. The record low of -18 occurred back in 1995.

Waxing Gibbous Moon tonight with 72% illuminated. The moon will set around 4:59 am. The Full “Snow” Moon is on Saturday night with chance of rain/snow then chance of snow. The sun will rise at 7:02 am with the first light at 6:32 am, which is 1 minutes and 12 seconds earlier then yesterday. Tonight will have 13 hours and 44 minutes of darkness, a decrease of 2 minutes and 33 seconds over last night.

Tomorrow will snow before noon, then freezing rain between noon and 2pm, then rain after 2pm. High of 36 degrees at 6pm. Three degrees above normal. Kind of a sloppy mess. I’ll let the professionals do the driving. Northeast wind 6 to 9 mph. Chance of precipitation is 100%. Little or no ice accumulation expected. New snow accumulation of less than a half inch possible. A year ago, we had partly cloudy skies and a high of 46 degrees. The record high of 48 was set in 2005. 12.4 inches of snow fell back in 1983.

Not a particularly nice weekend on tap. More cloudiness and storms this weekend. Saturday, a chance of snow before 1pm, then a chance of rain between 1pm and 4pm, then a chance of rain and snow after 4pm. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 36. Chance of precipitation is 30%. Sunday, a chance of rain and snow. Mostly cloudy, with a high near 39. Chance of precipitation is 50%.Typical average high for the weekend is 34 degrees.

In four weeks on March 6 the sun will be setting at 5:51 pm, which is 35 minutes later then tonight. In 2016 on that day, we had partly sunny skies and temperatures between 43 and 24 degrees. Typically, you have temperatures between 40 and 22 degrees. The record high of 63 degrees was set back in 1974.

Looking ahead, Presidents Day is in 2 weeks, Patriots Day is in 10 weeks, May Day is in 12 weeks and Memorial Day is in 16 weeks.

Huntersland

Almost heaven, John Denver’s Take Me Home sung on the radio as I headed down to High Point in Huntersland this evening. I’ve always wanted to find some place safe to stop along the road and take pictures, but that was not to be. But I captured it on my dash board camera.

I’ve always loved Appalachia, the hills, the mountains, the farms dug outside of the mountains. I love the remoteness and the freedom of people who live tucked into the mountains with no nearby neighbors. I’ve always loved the land and wildness of the area.

People flock to the Adirondacks and Catskills for remoteness. But I always crave the remoteness of the hills around Huntersland, and so many other places like it. It’s almost a world independent of the big city – probably the nearest big town in Schoharie, or actually more accurately, Cobelskill.

I’ve always told myself I’d some day like to live in a place in the mountains like this – off the beaten track – but not in New York. Like many, I could list the open burning ban and the SAFE Act as top reasons, but really living in Upstate NY, a Rural New Yorker, is one indignity after another. $5,000 a year property taxes are just offensive when many people in other states pay a tenth of that, pistol permits and the Sullivan Act, no un-permitted open carry even in the woods, no places to ride ATVs on most public lands, among other things that most people in other states gets to enjoy.

I can celebrate this beautiful, wild land, while condemning our state’s government. But I realize our state’s Appalachian beauty, is not an exception but a rule. Pennsylvania has many remarkable lands and much better laws and lower taxes. I’ve spent much time in the Pennsylvania Wilds, but I’ve also heard that Ohiopyle area of state in Green County is quite beautiful. Not to mention many of the areas in the center part of state. And so many other states too.

While I feel such bitterness towards the state, I do love the land and it’s beauty. It’s government maybe draconian and take care of these people poorly, but they don’t live a life of natural poverty, even if they struggle to make ends meet. And while I don’t intent this essay to be a rant about state government – we all live in the system we chose to live under – I do have conflicted feelings about this beautiful area.

Nuclear officials killed study on whether reactors posed cancer risk to nearby residents

"Federal regulators killed a rigorous examination of cancer in millions of Americans living near nuclear plants because they were convinced the study couldn’t link reactors to disease and would be too costly, newly released records show."

"Doubts over the study’s usefulness ran deep at the Nuclear Regulatory Commission, the agency overseeing America’s aging fleet of nuclear plants. But some study skeptics pushed to save it nonetheless, arguing that modern science could help address public concerns over possible health risks related to the plants. They couldn’t convince their bosses, however, who concluded that the $8 million price tag for the pilot study — which would have examined San Onofre and six other sites — couldn’t be justified."

"The previously unreported rift is captured in more than 1,000 pages of NRC documents obtained by Southern California News Group under the Freedom of Information Act. Some officials worried that killing the study would be “a PR fiasco,” reigniting questions about the demise of what some saw as the most significant federal examination of nuclear plant safety in a generation."

Carbon Emissions by Capita

This is a graph of sovereign states and territories by carbon dioxide emissions due to certain forms of human activity, based on the EDGAR database created by European Commission and Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency released in 2014. The following table lists the 2014 annual CO2 emissions estimates (in thousands of CO2 tonnes) along with a list of emissions per capita (in tonnes of CO2 per year) from same source. The data only considers carbon dioxide emissions from the burning of fossil fuels and cement manufacture, but not emissions from land use, land-use change and forestry. Emissions from international shipping or bunker fuels are also not included in national figures,[1] which can make a huge difference for small countries with important ports. The top 10 largest emitter countries account for 68.2% of the world total. Other powerful, more potent greenhouse gases are not included in this data, including methane.

Data Source: https://www.wikiwand.com/en/List_of_countries_by_carbon_dioxide_emissions

Map: Nine Corner Lake

Map: Nine Corner Lake

The Nine Corner Lake trail-head begins west of Pine Lake RT-29A near the intersection with NY 10. The trail is a gentle uphill, about 2.0 miles round trip, the hike passes some waterfalls on a mountain stream which the trail follows. Take the fork to the right when near the lake. There are several campsites along the lake, and the trail is wide and smooth enough to bring a trailered canoe or kayak.