automotive incinerate

old gas pumps and a razorback
…the same assumption that current ways of doing things will remain in place indefinitely is an important reason why so many otherwise prudent and intelligent people [choose] to ignore the signs that their lifestyle is getting ready to terminate itself with extreme prejudice.–John Michael Greer

Oops. I forgot. Tomorrow is judgment day.

2011 AD—On May 21st, Judgment Day will begin and the rapture (the taking up into heaven of God’s elect people) will occur at the end of the 23-year great tribulation. On October 21st, the world will be destroyed by fire (7000 years from the flood; 13,023 years from creation).–Innanet

Faced with difficult circumstances, it’s recommended that the non-faithful listen to “I Feel Fine” by R.E.M.

ride of silence

cyclists on Water Street
A second ride of silence took place in CHO yesterday. This is a worldwide event held every year, 3rd Wednesday in May, beginning in 2003. Locally the event is organized by cyclist Alan Bewley.

Main street
More information is available at the official ride of silence website. The ride highlights the fact that our roads are shared public spaces that are not shared very well. The ride honors, and provides a prolonged moment of meditation/contemplation for cyclists killed in the streets.

Rugby Rd
The rolling police protection which accompanied the 80+ riders through the streets of CHO Wednesday affords a level of safety missing for cyclists most days.

Norris, Bewley
Mayor Dave Norris, after the ride with event organizer Alan Bewley.

Some of the riders…
Ian Ayers’ video of the event.
Peter Norton and Coy Barefoot talk about the streets.

Mr. Jefferson’s River

Rivanna River
In 2005 the RWSA “discovered” that in wet weather events leaky pipes and insufficient “transmission capacity” meant that they were losing around 20-25 million gallons of sewage. Where was this liquor going? Into Mr. Jefferson’s river.
Some leaky pipe fixing was begun, 25% of the leaks are slated to be fixed by 2020.
But, that leaves a whole lot of mixed liquids and suspended solids (yeck) burping into the waters of the State of Virginia.

Tonight, Charlottesville City Council holds a public hearing on the subject of how best to deal with this environmental catastrophe.
From the beginning, RWSA has solicited input from the public, “give us your ideas. Think outside the box”. The public has responded with some good ideas which are generally dismissed.
For instance, the Public said “fix the leaky pipes”. Nope, too expensive, no one in the sewage industry tries to fix all the leaky pipes.

One of the RWSA fix options (they call them concepts) was dismissed by City Council, that concept was to locate a massive sewage pumping plant (53mgd capacity) in Riverview Park, the Community’s primary gateway to the river.
Now RWSA is advocating locating the pumping plant at the foot of Monticello Mountain, 6/10ths of a mile from Mr. Jefferson’s crib, this plan is known as option D.

Locating the pumping plant on the northwest face of Monticello Mountain would require the destruction of the riverine environment visible on the left side of the river above. All those trees have to go.

The public has suggested option E. which avoids destroying environmental resources and threatening the architectural resources of the Woolen Mills Village National Historic District. Option E doesn’t threaten anyone or anything. Option E is a bored pathway, in existing easements, to the Moore’s Creek Wastewater Treatment Plant.
Option E will be expensive. It is cheaper to leave the burden of transmitting the sewage from 43 square miles of County, City and University land squarely on the shoulders of property owners and residents in the Woolen Mills.

What will City Council recommend? What will the RWSA Board vote for?

We long for the day when fact based decision making trumps politics and when our community is reconnected with its River. Voting for option E would bring that day closer.

day of rest

swan point cemetery
My dad died twenty-one years ago this weekend. For years afterward I didn’t like spring. I like spring now.
I am trying to find out the sculptor for this statue, it is next to the river in Providence. My sister walked me out to see it the end of last October, it was a particular favorite of hers.
GEC walking her domain
Walking her domain, through the Zelkovas, then down in the river.


AlbCo supervisor ken boyd, executive tom foley
In dealing with the State, we ought to remember that its institutions are not aboriginal though they existed before we were born: that they are not superior to the citizen: that every one of them was once the act of a single man: every law and usage was a man’s expedient to meet a particular case: that they all are imitable, all alterable; we may make as good; we may make better. Society is an illusion to the young citizen. It lies before him in rigid repose with certain names, men, and institutions rooted like oak trees to the centre, round which all arrange themselves the best they can. But the old statesman knows that society is fluid; there are no such roots and centres but any particle may suddenly become the centre of the movement, and compel the system to gyrate round it as every man of strong will like Pisistratus or Cromwell, does for a time, and every man of truth like Plato, or Paul, does forever. But politics rest on necessary foundations and cannot be treated with levity.– Politics Ralph Waldo Emerson

Critical slopes

Charlottesville Planning Commission and City Council have a joint public hearing tomorrow night regarding updating the Critical Slopes ordinance. A unique opportunity for members of the public (Developers and residents) to weigh in on what our City will look like ten years down the road.
If you are a player of meeting bingo, the sustainability box will be filled in early.