The Global Lunchscape, Drought in the Southwest, Great Lakes-Mississippi Split, and Allies Against Natural Gas

New Nooze for your Wednesday reading pleasure!  Lots of really fantastic stuff today:

Peter Thomsonsam eatonFirst, from Peter Thomson, Sam Eaton, and the rest of the good folks at PRI's The World, an exciting new blog:  What's For Lunch, which is the newest chapter of their Food For 9 Billion project.

What's for Lunch: Under Pressure from Climate Change, A Global Tour of Our Changing Lunchscape

What’s for lunch?

It’s a question just about everyone on the planet asks every day, but it’s also one that most of us don’t really have to think much about. If we’re lucky enough not to be among the world’s billion or so chronically undernourished souls, we can generally be confident that whatever we have for lunch — or breakfast, or dinner — will be tasty, familiar, affordable and as available as ever.

But for how much longer?... Read more.

Listen to part of the project:

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Cally CarswellCally Carswell with High Country News weighs in on the drought's impacts on New Mexico, and not just in the form of fire:

New Mexico on Fire

New Mexico is burning. Again. In June 2011, winds gusting up to 40 miles per hour propelled an aspen into a power line in the Jemez Mountains, near Los Alamos, igniting a 156,593-acre blaze that became known as the Las Conchas Fire. It was the biggest wildfire in the New Mexico's recorded history, until the next year, when lighting struck the Gila National Forest in the southern part of the state, sparking the 297,845-acre Whitewater-Baldy Fire. Now, in its third year of drought, northern New Mexico is burning anew. Two fires started late last week, one in the Santa Fe National Forest east of Santa Fe, and another in the Jemez Mountains, quite near the Las Conchas burn scar. Both were kindled by trees falling on power lines.... Read more.

Firefighters march into the Gila during the Whitewater-Baldy fire of 2012. Courtesy Gila National Forest.

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john flesherJohn Flesher with the AP brings word of new steps in the fight against Asian carp:

Gov. Quinn Open to Great Lakes-Mississippi Split

Illinois Gov. Pat Quinn said Saturday that separating the Great Lakes and Mississippi River systems is the "ultimate solution" to prevent voracious Asian carp from overrunning the lakes, a potential step toward resolving a longstanding regional feud.

During a meeting with governors of several neighboring states, Quinn said it would be a massive and costly undertaking to rework the Chicago canal project that linked the two giant watersheds a century ago. He defended Illinois' efforts to block the advance of silver and bighead carp toward the lakes by hiring commercial fishermen and operating an electric barrier, but acknowledged more needs to be done... Read more.

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Photo Doby/NPR

Jeff Brady with NPR talks about how natural gas is creating some unexpected alliances in Oregon:

Natural Gas Export Plan Unites Oregon Landowners Against It

Rancher Bill Gow doesn't want the proposed Pacific Connector Gas Pipeline to travel across his Douglas County, Ore., ranch. While he has refused to negotiate with the pipeline company, ultimately a court may force him and other landowners to allow the project on their land. (Photo Jeff Brady/NPR)

A radical shift in the world energy picture is raising environmental concerns in the United States.

Until recently, the U.S. had been expected to import more natural gas. But now, because of controversial technologies like "fracking," drillers are producing a lot more domestic natural gas; so much that prices are down, along with industry profits. And drillers are looking overseas for new customers.

Whether the United States should export some of its newly abundant supplies of natural gas is a controversial issue before the Department of Energy. About two-dozen applications have been submitted to the agency for exports to countries that don't have free-trade agreements with the U.S... Read and hear more.