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Welcome to Rocket Trike Diaries—a 10 week video tour of the 2011 "Ride for Renewables: No Tar Sands Oil On American Soil!" Join Renewable Rider Tom Weis as he pedals his rocket trike 2,150 miles through America’s heartland in support of landowners fighting TransCanada’s toxic Keystone XL tar sands pipeline scheme. Here are the video entries from Week Six:
Video Entry #37: Great Plains Ranchers: Keystone XL Puts America "In Danger"
Renewable Rider Tom Weis meets Nebraska rancher Teri Taylor and South Dakota rancher John Harter at a local diner in Newport, Neb. Teri shares how the 3-year fight against Keystone XL has "taken over" the lives of her family. Describing an "environmentalist" as one who seeks to protect the natural resources of this country, she asks, "Do we not all respect the land, the water, the animal life, the plant life, the air?" John says he was not only lied to, but forced into eminent domain court by TransCanada. Explaining that the corporation refuses to accept liability, he describes how a pipeline oil spill on his property would make his land worthless. He condemns TransCanada's "lying," "cheating," and "stealing" as "pure greed." John warns of national security threats to America's fresh water supply.
Video Entry #38: Nebraska Farmers & Ranchers Talk Keystone XL Threats
Renewable Rider Tom Weis meets with a group of farmers and ranchers at a local diner in Newport, Neb. Byron Steskal discusses contamination threats to local food crops and livestock. Lynda Buoy expresses her outrage at landowners being bullied by a foreign corporation. Terry Frisch talks about contamination threats to the Sandhills and the Ogallala Aquifer, calling for some "Nebraska common sense" to protect our water. Todd Cone says if the pipeline is built, he will erect a monument of shame listing the names of Obama administration officials and Nebraska senators who supported it so people in the future will know who was responsible for contaminating Nebraska's water.
Video Entry #39: Ogallala Aquifer Exposed on Surface in Nebraska's Sandhills
Renewable Rider Tom Weis shows the Ogallala Aquifer exposed on the surface in the Sandhills region of Nebraska. He talks about how insane it would be to put a toxic tar sands pipeline underground in such a fragile area of the country.
Video Entry #40: Rocket Triking Through Nebraska's Sandhills at Sunset
Renewable Rider Tom Weis enjoys a quiet moment on the side of the road as the sun begins to set and the moon begins to rise. He shares a panoramic view of Nebraska's bucolic Sandhills.
Video Entry #41: Nebraska's Cedar River Threatened by Keystone XL
Renewable Rider Tom Weis shares the beauty of Nebraska's Cedar River, which would be threatened by Keystone XL. He talks about how the shallow-banked, slow moving river evokes personal memories of the Florida Everglades, and how if a foreign corporation were plotting to ram a toxic tar sands pipeline through the Everglades, the country would be, figuratively speaking, "up in arms." He urges similar national concern for Nebraska's river treasures.
Video Entry #42: Nebraska Farmer Describes TransCanada's "Ruthless" Behavior
Renewable Rider Tom Weis hears organic farmer Robert Bernt talk about how Keystone XL would threaten his family's livelihood by contaminating Nebraska's Cedar River. Robert, who describes the Ogallala Aquifer as "one of the most precious natural resources that this country has," talks about his "long, scary, unbelievable fight" against Keystone XL and how TransCanada has divided Nebraskans with lies: they "buy their way, force their way, threaten eminent domain..." He provides a disturbing first-hand account of how he was "ridiculed," "humiliated" and "put down" by Nebraska legislators at a public hearing on Keystone XL, giving the unmistakable appearance of politicians on the take. He describes TransCanada representatives openly mocking a member of the public at that same hearing, calling them "ruthless" and "careless," with "no concern for their fellow man..."
Video Entry #43: Rocket Triking the "Cowboy Trail"
Renewable Rider Tom Weis rocket trikes down a section of the "Cowboy Trail," a bike trail running 321 miles across northern Nebraska and following the old Chicago & Northwestern rail route. Navigating around what look to be prairie dog holes, he reflects on the day and ruminates about the need for more bike trails across America to provide people with more transportation choices.
EcoWatch Daily Newsletter
By Bijal Trivedi
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) released a report on Nov. 13 that describes a list of microorganisms that have become resistant to antibiotics and pose a serious threat to public health. Each year these so-called superbugs cause more than 2.8 million infections in the U.S. and kill more than 35,000 people.
By Joe Vukovich
Under the guise of responding to consumer complaints that today's energy- and water-efficient dishwashers take too long, the Department of Energy has proposed creating a new class of dishwashers that wouldn't be subject to any water or energy efficiency standards at all. The move would not only undermine three decades of progress for consumers and the environment, it is based on serious distortions of fact regarding today's dishwashers.
By Emily Moran
If you have oak trees in your neighborhood, perhaps you've noticed that some years the ground is carpeted with their acorns, and some years there are hardly any. Biologists call this pattern, in which all the oak trees for miles around make either lots of acorns or almost none, "masting."
By Catherine Davidson
Tashi Yudon peeks out from behind a net curtain at the rooftops below and lets out a sigh, her breath frosting on the windowpane in front of her.
Some 700 kilometers away in the capital city Delhi, temperatures have yet to dip below 25 degrees Celsius, but in Spiti there is already an atmosphere of impatient expectation as winter settles over the valley.