Sierra Club Arizona Legislature 2010 Environmental Report Card – Make it happen.

Sierra Club Arizona Legislature 2010 Environment Report Card – PDF

Give this a read if you care about doing anything outside of a hermetically sealed room with filtered and chemically treated water. If you believe in science and care about what comes next these are the issues you need to keep at the forefront. This is long term planning for the place we live. If we dont have drinking water there is no point.

Here is how the officials in my area did on the Sierra Club Arizona Legislature 2010 Environmental Report Card:

Way to go Ken Cheuvront for most improved!

Senator Ken Cheuvront (D-15) improved from a “D” on the 2009 report card to an “A” on the 2010 report card. Senator Cheuvront helped point out the silliness of the light bulb bill and stood up for parks and clean water. His grade improved considerably this session, because he missed very few votes. We appreciate his support for environmental protection over the years as leaves the legislature after 16 years of service.

Cateye’s Social Network – World Commute – Measure your Carbon Offset – Verdict: Bridge to Nowhere

by aloshbennett
by aloshbennett

So Cateye has a new product called Cateye Commute. Its a cyclometer that helps you measure your ‘Greenness’ and stuff and it sounds pretty cool. You can read the Wired review of the Cateye Commuter here. I am more interested in the social network that they built to go along with this device – WorldCommute.com.

The basic concept is not new, there are a number of excercise and carbon offset tracking websites out there. However this one seems to combine them both and acts like a Nike+ for bikes. Unfortunately it is not going anywhere.

There are a few basic reasons for this:

  • Publicity
  • Networking

Publicity – External and Internal

No one is talking about this site. How do I know this? Yahoo is currently showing 7,000 backlinks. That is sad. Whats worse is that the top result on Yahoo’s list is cateye.com. In voodoo SEO terms this means the strongest link Cateye is getting for their Social Network is from Cateye. Nice outreach. For a topic this hot there is no reason they shouldn’t have government and educational sites linking to them as a way to take resposibility for your energy use. Send Obama a computer and get him to blog about it on the Whitehouse blog or something…

How commited is Cateye to this project? From looking at the Cateye website and its lack of a mention or link to worldcommute.com I would say not very.  Currently a search for “site:cateye.com world commute” gives a total of 7 results, on a site with over 1400 pages. The product page for the Cateye Commuter has no link to worldcommute.com. (As a side note there is no link to a Youtube video of how to install the Cateye Commute Cyclometer, or how to use it.)

Networking – As in Social

Cateye knows about Facebook, Twitter, and Youtube, but for some reason it doesn’t want to connect its own Social Network to them. This is perplexing to say the least. Considering the Privacy issues that they bring up during signup, I really don’t want to give you my birthdate, it makes sense to take advantage of the info that people have already given to their existing networks. Also its a pain in the ass to send an individual invite to each of my friends to get them to join me at WorldCommute.com. With all the latest stuff going on at Facebook and connecting sites together this is a major mistake.

Is there a way to sync the info from the Cateye Commute to my computer for upload to worldcommute.com? I assume no as there is no mention of this on the product page. This is a big miss as well considering the rise in various tracking methods on iPhones and Blackberries like Nike+ and AllSport GPS.

Conclusion

Cateye is taking a good direction here in terms of broadening their audience and message but in the end no one is going to use worldcommute.com as it is currently setup. There are 105 groups on the site but each one that I scanned over had less than 5 members. Cateye can make this a success if it can link their Cateye Commute Cyclometer to the site and connect worldcommute.com to the rest of the internet better. If you are running the show at Cateye I would love to talk further on this and help make it a success in exchange for some cash.

Rio Salado Habitat Restoration – Weed and Clean Sunday, May 16, 7 a.m.

Join us for our monthly Weed and Clean projectat the Rio Salado Habitat Restoration Area, which stretches for five miles along the Salt River just south of downtown Phoenix.

Once a dump site, the area is now a lush riparian corridor that supports a variety of wildlife and recreation opportunities.

Snacks, drinks, gloves, and some tools provided. Join us for this fun, rewarding work!

To get involved, contact Sandy Bahr at 602-253-8633 or sandy.bahr@sierraclub.org.

Arizona Legislature 2010 and the Environment

Crepuscular rays taken by fdecomite
Crepuscular rays taken by fdecomite

Hooray! Finally, the Arizona Legislature wrapped up what will likely go down as one of the worst sessions, at least in recent history. Our air, land, water and wildlife took some significant hits and our health and future will suffer – unless we can turn it around. Now is the time to turn the tide and make sure legislators who do not support environmental protection find something else to do. Look for the environmental report card to come out in the next two weeks for details on how legislators voted on key environmental issues. Hold them accountable.

To learn more about the bills just click on Sierra Club Tracker. To find out how you can get involved and do more, contact Sandy Bahr at 602-253-8633 or sandy.bahr@sierraclub.org.
http://action.sierraclub.org/site/R?i=yeksid4y8nDL-mYKFwoVPw..

McDowell Mountain Road Adopt-a-Highway Cleanup – May 15th 2010

Our five-mile stretch of scenic blue highway meanders through the eastern foothills of McDowell Mountain Regional Park. Nestled between Four Peaks and the Superstition, McDowell, and Mazatzal Mountains, there’s no finer place in the Sonoran Desert to provide this community service. We’ll finish before noon, leaving the afternoon free.

Call Michael Brady at 480-250-4054 for more information and to get involved.

Sounds like a killer activity after partying it up the day before at Desert Bloom Phoenix

Verde River Clean-up – May 8th 2010

Celebrate National River Cleanup and help keep the Verde River clean!

The Verde is one of the largest perennial streams in the Southwest and supports numerous native species, provides outstanding recreational values, and also supplies drinking water to communities in central Arizona. Help us protect this important resource!

For more information and to get involved, contact Steve Pawlowski at 602-254-9330 or steve.pawlowski@sierraclub.org

Sonoran Solar Project – Public Comments now open – Speak UP!

Encourage the Bureau of Land Management to Ensure that this project is the best possible by limiting water use and the use of natural gas.

The Bureau of Land Management is seeking public comment on the proposed Sonoran Solar Energy Project.

This is the first big solar project on public land in Arizona. The proposal includes construction of a 375 MW electrical generating facility using concentrated solar thermal power on 3,700 acres.

Read more about the project online.

Comments can be submitted via this page or via email to sonoransolar@blm.gov or by mail to Joe Incardine, National Project Manager, BLM Phoenix District Office, Lower Sonoran Field Office, 21605 N. 7th Ave., Phoenix, AZ 85027.

For more information, please contact Sandy Bahr at 602-253-8633 or sandy.bahr@sierraclub.org.

Review: e2 Рparis: v̩lo libert̩ Рwhere is the archive?

E2 is a great PBS series on where things are headed for humans and how we are trying to live in better harmony with the planet Earth. Brad Pitt narrates it so its cool factor is up there. Add to this that all the shots are at least half out of focus and you have modern hipster all tied up.

The latest one covered Paris’ bicycling revolution with the “public-private Vélib’ bike initiative”. Its a pretty cool system where you are encouraged to make short, 30 minute or less, trips with public bikes. Read more here to get the details.

I really enjoyed this episode and wanted to share it with many people. The problem is that the only way to see it is to either have a TV or buy the episodes from iTunes or on DVD. I think this is very lame because the show is publicly and privately funded and is great public service information, which is to say that no one is going to buy it.
Maybe they need to cut their budget a bit: I am pretty sure you can get someone for less than Mr. Pitt goes for, and all the artsy editing and photography could be cut out.

I wrote PBS a message, you should too.

Oh and please RT this and please leave a comment below. This is your tax dollars, you should get to see what you already paid for.