Friday, September 05, 2008

A Better Day - (3rd annual Progressive Fest Illinois) Saturday, September 20th 9a-4:30p


Palatine Conference Fosters Grassroots Efforts Toward Peace, Justice, Sustainability.

Palatine, IL - September 3, 2008 - When it comes to the large problems facing humanity, how can one person make a difference? A Better Day 2008 offers answers by bringing together distinguished speakers, activists, and community organizers for a day. The public is invited to learn and discuss the issues, make connections, and get involved in any of dozens of social benefit groups.

A Better Day 2008 takes place Saturday, September 20, from 9 a.m. to 4:30 p.m. at Countryside Church Unitarian Universalist, 1025 N. Smith Street, Palatine, Illinois.

This open, non-partisan event offers three tracks of activity: speakers, an exhibit of local organizations, and breakout sessions in the church classrooms. Jim Kenney of Common Ground will give the morning keynote, “Peace is Possible”. Other speakers will address social and economic justice, sustainable living, support for our veterans, and ways of dealing with our differences. Exhibitors in the conference hall will include environmentalists, advocates for economic reform and social justice, and local peace groups.

Programs will emphasize personal involvement. Program Committee member Kat Doyle says, "We want to tell everyone, you can do something! Working with other people for a good cause is a great way to make friends, discover skills you never knew you had, and just have fun."

A Better Day 2008 is sponsored by the Adult Faith Development Council of Countryside Church Unitarian Universalist, Palatine, Illinois.

Hal Snyder, M.D.
A Better Day 2008 Program Committee

What Is A Better Day?

  • A one-day grassroots gathering about peace, justice, and the environment.
  • A chance to network with people who are concerned about the way things are going and are determined to make a difference.
  • A day of learning about the issues from organizers who are at the forefront on matters of global and interfaith fellowship, social justice, and sustainability.
  • But most of all - a day to kick-start your participation in any of twenty or more local action groups - or if you are already involved, a chance to make new connections and reach out to the community.

A Better Day was inspired by Fighting Bob Fest, the annual Wisconsin extravaganza that brings thousands of fired-up progressive speakers, organizers, and rabble-rousers to Baraboo every September.

Morning Session

9:00-9:30 Doors Open, Registration

9:30-10:00 Opening

  • Rev. Hilary Landau-Krivchenia: Welcome
  • Hal Snyder: Getting the Most Out of the Day

10:00-10:45 Keynote by Jim Kenney: Peace is Possible Common Ground

11:00-12:00 Health and Education, Social Justice

  • 11:00-11:20 Melanie Schikore Andina: Social Justice Through the Arts
  • 11:30-11:50 Victoria Weiley: Living Within Your Means; Means Simply......Living

Lunch Break - 12:00-1:30

Afternoon Session

1:30-2:30 Sustainability

2:30-3:30 Supporting Our Veterans

3:30-4:15 Panel: Dealing With Our Differences

4:15 Closing by Rev. Hilary Landau-Krivchenia: Taking A Better Day Forward

Groups Working to Make a Difference

We hope you'll use A Better Day as a chance to network. Joining a social benefit organization is a great way to make new friends and discover your hidden talents. We are opening Atherton Hall to tables for more than 20 organizations.

We expect members or official representatives from the

Getting the Word Out

Peace Justice and Sustainability

Invitation (updated 9/02)

Mindmap (updated 8/29)

Registration form (save $2 by registering in advance at CCUU)

What is A Better Day? (updated 8/29)

Help Us Publicize the Event!

About US:

The team behind A Better Day arose from the joining of two groups.

For two years, 2006 and 2007, some of us helped organize the Illinois Progressive Fest in Big Rock, Illinois to bring together progressive candidates and activists working to put people before profits and restore the social contract in our government. In 2008 we formed the Progressive Fest Illinois (PFI) committee to work on non-partisan annual events going forward.

The Adult Faith Development Council of CCUU (Countryside Church Unitarian Universalist) in Palatine includes persons dedicated to uplifting the human spirit and working with organizations in the community to promote peace, justice, and sustainability.

email: · media contact: Hal Snyder 224-678-6188

Both groups were interested in bringing together speakers, activists, and the public for a day of learning and networking. We decided to pool our efforts to bring you A Better Day.

Tuesday, September 02, 2008

UW-Madison News Release--Ice Age Predicts Rise in Sea Level

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE 9/2/08  CONTACT: Anders Carlson, (608) 262-1921,  ICE AGE LESSON PREDICTS A FASTER RISE IN SEA LEVEL  MADISON - If the lessons being learned by scientists about the demise of the last great North American ice sheet are correct, estimates of global sea level rise from a melting Greenland ice sheet may be seriously underestimated.  Writing this week (Aug. 31) in the journal Nature Geoscience, a team of researchers led by University of Wisconsin-Madison geologist Anders Carlson reports that sea level rise from greenhouse-induced warming of the Greenland ice sheet could be double or triple current estimates over the next century.  "We're not talking about something catastrophic, but we could see a much bigger response in terms of sea level from the Greenland ice sheet over the next 100 years than what is currently predicted," says Carlson, a UW-Madison professor of geology and geophysics. Carlson worked with an international team of researchers, including Allegra LeGrande from the NASA Center for Climate Systems at Columbia University, and colleagues at the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, the California Institute of Technology, University of British Columbia and University of New Hampshire.  Scientists have yet to agree on how much melting of the Greenland ice sheet - a terrestrial ice mass encompassing 1.7 million square kilometers - will contribute to changes in sea level. One reason, Carlson explains, is that in recorded history there is no precedent for the influence of climate change on a massive ice sheet.  "We've never seen an ice sheet disappear before, but here we have a record," says Carlson of the new study that combined a powerful computer model with marine and terrestrial records to provide a snapshot of how fast ice sheets can melt and raise sea level in a warmer world.  Carlson and his group were able to draw on the lessons of the disappearance of the Laurentide ice sheet, the last great ice mass to cover much of the northern hemisphere. The Laurentide ice sheet, which encompassed large parts of what are now Canada and the United States, began to melt about 10,000 years ago in response to increased solar radiation in the northern hemisphere due to a cyclic change in the orientation of the Earth's axis. It experienced two rapid pulses of melting - one 9,000 years ago and another 7,600 years ago - that caused global sea level to rise by more than half an inch per year.  Those pulses of melting, according to the new study, occurred when summer air temperatures were similar to what are predicted for Greenland by the end of this century, a finding the suggests estimates of global sea level rise due to a warming world climate may be seriously underestimated.  The most recent estimates of sea level rise due to melting of the Greenland ice sheet by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) suggest a maximum sea level rise during the next 100 years of about 1 to 4 inches. That estimate, Carlson and his colleagues note, is based on limited data, mostly from the last decade, and contrasts sharply with results from computer models of future climate, casting doubt on current estimates of change in sea level due to melting ice sheets.  According to the new study, rising sea levels up to a third of an inch per year or 1 to 2 feet over the course of a century are possible.  Even slight rises in global sea level are problematic as a significant percentage of the world's human population - hundreds of millions of people - lives in areas that can be affected by rising seas.  "For planning purposes, we should see the IPCC projections as conservative," Carlson says. "We think this is a very low estimate of what the Greenland ice sheet will contribute to sea level."  The authors of the new Nature Geoscience report were able to document the retreat of the Laurentide ice sheet and its contributions to changes in sea level by measuring how long rocks once covered by ice have been exposed to cosmic radiation, estimates of ice retreat based on radiocarbon dates from organic material as well as changes in ocean salinity.  In addition to Carlson and LeGrande, co-authors of the study, which was funded primarily by the National Science Foundation, are Gavin A. Schmidt of Columbia University, Delia W. Oppo of the Woods Hole Oceanographic Institution, Rosemarie E. Came of the California Institute of Technology, Faron S. Anslow of the University of British Columbia, Joseph M. Licciardi of the University of New Hampshire and Elizabeth A. Obbink of UW-Madison. ### - Terry Devitt, (608) 262-8282,    **************************************************** For questions or comments about UW-Madison's email news release system, please send an email to:  For more UW-Madison news, please visit:  University Communications University of Wisconsin-Madison 27 Bascom Hall 500 Lincoln Drive Madison, WI 53706  Phone: (608) 262-3571 Fax: (608) 262-2331   

Opportunities in Midwestern Renewable Energy

Learn how to get the inside track in the race to develop renewable energy in the Midwest

Receive detailed briefings on:
· Renewable initiatives in the Midwest — identifying the opportunities
· Impacts of RPS and other initiatives on project development in the Midwest
· Dealing with transmission issues in the Midwest
· Purchasing and developing renewable energy in the Midwest
· Assessing the financing market for renewable energy projects in the Midwest

Don't Miss the Pre-Summit Workshop:
"Renewable Energy Development & Finance Issues in the Midwest"-- This pre-summit workshop will address specific issues and development "wrinkles" that renewable energy projects are likely to encounter in the Midwest.

Workshop: Renewable Energy Development & Finance Issues in the Midwest
Monday, October 6, 2008, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm

Summit: Opportunities in Midwestern Renewable Energy
Tuesday, October 7, 2008, 8:00 am to 5:00 pm
Wednesday, October 8, 2008, 9:00 am to 11:45 am

Doubletree Hotel Minneapolis Park Place
1500 Park Place Blvd
Minneapolis, MN 55416

FEE View Tuition Details

More Event Information - Reach the Response

For Want Of A Windmill...

For Want Of A Windmill...

In the 1860's a Jesuit Priest fashioned a whirligig dream,
Grew a business most successful,
'Till the days after WW II spinning water out of the ground,
All started in a little Wisconsin town.

Spin and whirl,
Pretty as a pearl,
Ornate wood or polished steel,
Pretty painted colors the life of many a farmer.

A Chicago company saw the light,
Bought the rights and moved North,
Fairbanks Morse landed in Beloit,
All was well that pumped the well.

In the 1920's an immigrant from Italy,
One Tuscan gentleman of little fame,
Landed and landed a job,
There by the river at Fairbanks Morse.

He found a wife and adopted a baby girl,
My own mother and grandmother,
So Noni cooked and Nono ground metal,
And my Mother married my Dad.

Spin and whirl,
Pretty as a pearl,
Ornate wood or polished steel,
Pretty painted colors the life of many a farmer.

Four children born there on the Rock,
Myself and my siblings all alive,
In the year 2000 I turned to poetry,
And fancied windmills could save the Earth.

I wrote poems of the graceful things,
Took my son to see them,
Blogged of the light and right,
And tilted at windmills for all I was worth.

Only just yesterday I find I'd have never been born nor they,
For want of a windmill in 1867,
The Poet who loves windmills exists because of a windmill,
Simply named Eclipse.


By Daniel A. Stafford
© 09/02/2008

My Grandfather worked for 44 years at Fairbanks Morse, which would never have located in Beloit, WI if not for the Eclipse windmill. The Eclipse windmill line was arguably the most successful water-pumping windmill in American history, and also served in many locations overseas. My Grandfather very likely would have ended up somewhere else if the Eclipse windmill wasn't invented and made in Beloit - and I and all my brothers and sisters would never have been. How ironic that I have been a promoter of windmills as a large part of the solution to climate crisis these past eight years.Tilting at windmills quite simply suits me.

Monday, September 01, 2008

What to do about polar bear drownings and arctic sea solar radiation absorption

8 Polar Bears Trying To Swim 400 Miles To Nearest Ice:


We should be creating artificial "ice islands" by making chains of white floating platforms that can be anchored in place to create open shipping lanes while giving the polar bears places to rest and hunt from. Such platforms could also reflect solar radiation back into space instead of letting it be absorbed into the seawater. This could literally help slow or mitigate many of the impacts of global warming. Such platforms could be inflatable, yet made of tough material the polar bears could climb on. They should be made of a material that will break down naturally in the ocean environment over time rather than traditional plastics, so that they wouldn't contribute to the plastic waste pollution problems in our oceans.