WWALS to FCC: Cancel vote on Order against net neutrality

If you like hearing about outings and advocacy so you can participagte, please contact the FCC today to oppose their vote tomorrow that would greatly damage the open Internet we all use to communicate and organize.

Please call or email the three Commissioners who favor this unfortunate Order:

  • Main #: 1-888-225-5322
  • Chairman Pai: Ajit.Pai@fcc.gov
  • Commmissioner Rielly: Mike.O’Rielly@fcc.gov
  • Commissioner Carr: Brendan.Carr@fcc.gov

You can also file comments, which are publicly visible, and thus may help get others to call or write the FCC.

To submit a written comment:

  1. https://www.fcc.gov/ecfs/search/filings
  2. Either in the menu on the left (desktop) or the pulldown from the top (mobile), select Express.
  3. File a comment in WC Docket 17-108.
  4. Be sure to say you are against the proposed Order and for net neutrality.

Below is the letter I filed with the FCC today, confirmation number 20171213002539051; or see PDF.

Preserve an open Internet, Letter

Continue reading

PR: Florida man wins Suwannee Riverkeeper kayak raffle drawing at Okefenokee Swamp in Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Hahira, Georgia, December 13, 2017 — People got kayak raffle tickets for three months at festivals from Alapaha, Georgia to Live Oak, Florida, and online, until the drawing at a Suwannee Riverkeeper outing Sunday at the top of the Suwannee River in the Okefenokee Swamp. The lucky winner of a kayak donated by Malibu Kayaks is Chris Newton from the Atlantic coast of Florida. “No way!” he said.

At Stephen C. Foster State Park, Fargo, Georgia, Gretchen Quarterman, Acting Executive Director for WWALS Watershed Coalition, said:

“These are all the tickets that we sold. And these are the ones that Shirley [Kokidko, WWALS board member] sold. These are the ones that came from Phil [Hubbard, WWALS board member of Valdosta, Lowndes County, Georgia]. These are the ones that came from Hulaween [Live Oak, Suwannee County, Florida]. These are the ones that came from Skillet Fest [Quitman, Brooks County, Georgia, suggested by WWALS member John Horton of Quitman and Suwannee, Dixie County, Florida] ….”

Gretchen Quarterman assembles the tickets at WWALS kayak raffle drawing 2017-12-10

WWALS board member Shirley Kokidko of Pearson, Atkinson County, Georgia, had the video camera at Continue reading

Kayak raffle winner drawn at Okefenokee Suwannee River Outing 2017-12-10

WWALS Acting Executive Director Gretchen Quarterman said:

These are all the tickets that we sold. And these are the ones that Shirley sold. These are the ones that came from Phil. These are the ones that came from Hulaween. These are the ones that came from Skillet Fest….

Look, a bird!

WWALS kayak raffle drawing 2017-12-10

Shirley Kokidko at the WWALS Okefenokee Outing, Sunday, December 10, 2017, refocused the camera on the proceedings. Then more ticket sources: Continue reading

One alligator, some turtles, many birds: cold and clear Okefenokee Outing

If you weren’t among the small but hardy group of paddlers yesterday, you missed more birds than I’ve ever seen in the Okefenokee Swamp on a sunny cold December morning. We did draw the winner for the kayak raffle; we’ll announce that once we get a return telephone call.

Getting out, 12:59:19,, Minnie Lake

Before even entering the Stephen C. Foster State Park, we saw a great blue heron, the bird on the WWALS banner, plus a wild hog. Inside, we saw Continue reading

Fluor books huge loses on three failed gas-fired plants, plus two failed nukes

It’s not just GE and Siemens that are “experiencing disruption of unprecedented scope and speed,” power plant builder Fluor finds “The challenges we have experienced over the last two years on gas-fired power projects are inconsistent with the results we have historically achieved.” Maybe you should have bet on sun and wind power, Fluor, Siemens, and GE, instead of fracked methane and nukes.

Fluor and Diablo Canyon nuclear project in California
Photo: Fluor web page on Diablo Canyon nuclear power plant

Copenhaver Construction, Inc., 8 August 2017,

Problems on three gas-fired power plant projects with fixed-price contracts forced Dallas-based Fluor Corp. to book a $124-million charge in 2017’s second quarter.

CEO David. T. Seaton says Continue reading

Global Croplands, Suwannee River Basin

You can see on these maps that the Suwannee River Basin is massively agricultural, except where it’s forestry or swamp or other wetlands. Thus it’s no wonder that most of the nitrate runoff problem here is due to agriculture, as shown in the Basin Management Action Plans (BMAPs).

Basin Wide, Maps

WWALS Science Committee Chair Tom Potter points to this Global Croplands map to illustrate the BMAP issues. The question remains of whether agricultural best management practices as advocated in the recent BMAP meetings will be sufficient to deal with the problem, considering they haven’t decreased it in the past decade.

Global Croplands About: Continue reading

Last chance before kayak raffle drawn at Okefenokee Suwannee River Outing 2017-12-10

You may have seen this kayak at the Brooks County Skillet Fest, the Berrien County Harvest Fest, the Alapaha Station Celebration, the Hahira Honeybee, or Suwannee Hulaween, and now there are only a few days to get a raffle ticket for it, before we draw the winner 9AM this Sunday in the Okefenokee Swamp on the monthly WWALS paddle outing.

Raffle kayak, Hulaween

You can put your donation in online and get your kayak raffle tickets. All proceeds go to support the work of WWALS Watershed Coalition, because Malibu Kayaks generously donated the kayak.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!

Four Freedoms Trail, Madison, FL to Withlacoochee River

Paddling down the Withlacoochee River from Nankin to Mozell Spells, the remains of the Valdosta Railway Bridge mark on the right bank the north end of the Four Freedoms Trail, one of the few hiking trails on the Withlacoochee and Little River Water Trail (WLRWT):

Valdosta Railway trestle
Photo: John S. Quarterman for WWALS, 9 July 2016.

The Four Freedoms Trail in Madison County was constructed as a joint effort between Continue reading

Cattle, sinkholes, and digups vs. Sabal Trail: Janet Barrow 2017-11-20

Sabal Trail apparently doesn’t know cattle.

cattle go rogue over Sabal Trail pipeline markers

The pipeline company claimed they know restoration, but that’s not what the ground looks like now, with sparse vegetation and erosion. They say they love wildlife, but they drove off a heron and who knows what else. They’re driving down property values. What are those bubbles? Which milepoint is which, anyway? Janet Barrow lives in Marion County, but she also reports on Citrus County. For 54 pages, with a summation.

For the rest of FERC Accession Number 20171120-5026, “Comment of Janet L Barrow under CP15-17, et. al.; A Citizen’s Supplemental Information Regarding Sabal Trail’s October, 2017 Monthly Report” on the WWALS website, follow this link.

 -jsq, John S. Quarterman, Suwannee RIVERKEEPER®

You can join this fun and work by becoming a WWALS member today!

EPA perfunctory Lack of Objections to FERC Sabal Trail DSEIS 2017-11-20

EPA doesn’t even remember when it sent its own greenhouse gas (GHG) comments to FERC, forgets that it already told FERC nevermind, and now says, despite copious evidence filed by Senators, professors, Riverkeepers, and environmental organizations from multiple states as far away as Colorado, that FERC’s incorrect and inadequate Draft Supplementary Environmental Impact Statemen (FSEIS) rates “Lack of Objections or “LO””.

EPA to FERC, Re: SMPP This latest EPA letter is dated November 20, 2017, but FERC didn’t inform intervenors about it until today, two weeks later. The EPA letter claims:

The EPA commented on the FEIS on January 25, 2016. In those comments the EPA provided several recommendations including that the FERC consider a detailed evaluation of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions in future analyses.

Yet FERC’s Docket CP15-17 shows no comment by EPA in January 2016. It does show this same G. Alan Farmer, Director, Resource Conservation and Restoration Division, EPA, wrote a letter to FERC filed 1 December 2015 as Accession Number 20171201-0034 (see also WWALS blog post), in which he said nothing I can see about greenhouse gases, but he did basically say “nevermind” to EPA’s extensive letter of October 26, 2015, filed as Accession Number 0151102-0219 (clean text on the WWALS website), which October letter did include: Continue reading