Weather or Not: Intentional Manipulation

Have you ever noticed strange cloud patterns in the sky? One day as I sat outside a city cafe with my family, we noticed airplane exhaust trails crisscrossing the sky like utility wires.

I recalled this scene yesterday, while attending a meeting of the Special Commission to Study Intentional Manipulation of the Global Environment Through Geoengineering, and listening to a riveting presentation by a member of the commission, Rachael McIntosh. She began with a story:

“My sister and I spent a lot of time at TF Green Airport waiting around in that big green hanger on Airport Road while dad did up his flight plan after checking in with the weather station. Little did I realize that years later my life would be focused on the weather, specifically with something called geoengineering.”

What is geoengineering? McIntosh explains, “Geoengineering is ‘the intentional manipulation of the environment, involving, nuclear, biological, chemical, electromagnetic, and/or other physical-agent activities that effect changes to Earth’s atmosphere and/or surface.’

“There are many types of Geoengineering.  For instance, if you build a dam and create a lake, that’s geoengineering!  If you inject Sulfur Dioxide (SO2) and Carbon Dioxide (CO2) as dry ice, into the atmosphere to create rain, that’s geoengineering too!  

“You’ve seen the results in the sky.  The sky looks different than it did 20 years ago. It’s a lot more murky and polluted looking. New, man-made cloud types now exist and are being taught to kids in school.”

McIntosh has compiled an impressive amount of research on the history of this science:

“These artificial clouds are what those big binders that I brought in deal with.  Those documents outline a comprehensive time line of weather control and reveal intense efforts to militarize the power of being able to control natural phenomena.  

“Rhode Island’s Senator Claiborne Pell, pictured on that first binder, was the first elected official to recognize the dangers of geoengineering. In 1975 he wrote an Editorial in The Providence Journal called, ‘United States and Other World Powers Should Outlaw Tampering With Weather for Use as a War Weapon.’ He was afraid that world leaders would, ‘start directing storms, manipulating climates, and inducing earthquakes against their enemies…’

“Senator Pell knew of Operation Popeye, a highly classified weather modification program that was used in Vietnam to extend the monsoon season.  Modified rain poured down upon the Ho Chi Minh Trail, extending the rainy season over the main military supply route for the Viet Cong.”

Does this pique your curiosity? A part of me would like to put my head in the sand and ignore it, however, the better part of me wants to learn more. If the chemical agents being used in atmospheric geoengineering are showering down from above, how toxic are they? The purpose of the special commission is to study and provide recommendations for state regulation and licensure of all geoengineering technologies, as outlined in RI H6011 The Geoengineering Act of 2017. The focus of the Study Commission will be determining how to implement the new process and how to enforce the new regulations and insure that emissions of any sort that result from geoengineering, proposed or already in use, are safe for people and the environment.

McIntosh explains the need for the law and the commission: “No one is breaking any laws in Rhode Island as all this weather modification / geoingineering stuff swirls around us, and that’s because WE HAVE NO LAW governing Geoengineering.  We are allowing these xenobiotic, neurotoxic, carcinogenic agents to be showered upon us willy-nilly with no legal recourse as our people and our environment are becoming more and more fragile due to ongoing exposure.”

“Mark Jacobson, Professor of Civil and Environmental Engineering at Stanford University says in a letter of support for The Rhode Island Geoengineering Act, that he ‘strongly supports the goals of analyzing and regulating any proposed geoengineering activity before it is put in place in the atmosphere or oceans because of the strong unintended consequences of such activities and the fact that they do not solve atmospheric problems, merely mask them for future generations to deal with while the underling problems worsen.’”

McIntosh puts the state legislative effort into perspective: “The federal government and transnational organizations have not, and will not do it for us. Currently the State of Rhode Island requires a license to cut fingernails. Geoengineering is a far greater public safety threat but is completely unregulated.”

McIntosh’s presentation is an appeal to the people of Rhode Island, “State legislation is essential because international groups are scrambling to impose geoengineering governance upon us without our consent. Either we impose regulatory prohibition of Geoengineering within a legal framework here in Rhode Island, or we lose the ability to have any input or oversight over these hazardous activities, and unelected global agencies will govern geoengineering for us… The people of Rhode Island are NOT subjects!  We have the absolute right and authority to govern ourselves.”

What is geoengineering really all about? How harmful is it? Rhode Islanders can learn a little more by listening to yesterday’s complete presentation on Capitol TV and attending future hearings. Clearly more dots need to be connected.

Interested citizens are invited attend the next meeting of the commission on Tuesday, March 12 at 2:30 pm in Room 101 at the Rhode Island State House. Those who wish to speak in front of the commission can sign up to do so upon arrival. Testimony should be limited to 2 minutes.

What can Rhode Islanders do to get involved in this issue? Contact local representatives and senators to share opinions, personal stories, rain water testing results, medical test results… and write to Representative Justin Price, head of the study commission. Your words matter!

The Last Straw

Patch news recently reported that a local senator has introduced bill S202 to limit plastic in Rhode Island. The bill attempts to follow suit to a straw law that went into effect in California on January 1. Although completely in support of reducing plastic waste, I disagree with this king of legislation. There is little doubt that straws litter the nation’s shorelines and have disastrous consequences for marine life. What I take issue with is pinning the responsibility and the penalty on restaurants: “Establishments in violation of the law would receive a notice of violation for the first and second offenses.”

EcoRInews reports “Restaurants may offer straws made of paper, pasta, sugar cane, wood, or bamboo. Each violation incurs a $25 fine, not to exceed $300 in a year. The state director of health would enforce penalties.”

Restaurants do not toss litter into waterways and onto beaches; careless individuals do. The senator argues that curtailing the use of plastic straws in restaurants will encourage consumers to think twice about their own footprint. It will, if waitresses politely explain the Last Plastic Straw Challenge, which encourages bars and restaurants to eliminate plastic pollution at the source by only providing plastic straws upon request. This law is requiring restaurants to educate their customers.

Many Rhode Island restaurants are already doing this of their own conscious free will, and the movement is catching on. Food server, Lori Rinkel, got permission from the manager of Tickets restaurant, in Middletown, to post a sign that says “Please consider going strawless! The ocean thanks you!” Rinkel does not put a straw in any drink ever that she serves. “If someone asks for a straw, I ask them if they really need it, and probably go overboard by telling them that it takes 200 years for that straw to decompose, and it never really does and that we use 500 billion straws a day in the U.S. alone. Then I usually tell them, ‘I am going to get fired over straws!’ The majority of my customers are thankful of the information, and I tell them ‘This is one simple thing you can do to help our environment, it is so easy.’”

There was a campaign in Newport this summer called #strawlessbythesea. Most of the restaurants on Broadway joined in. Campaigners updated Instagram with the corporate companies that are getting away from plastic straws, including McDonalds, Disney World and Starbucks, to name a few. Meg’s Aussie Milk Bar on Bellevue Avenue in Newport takes a slightly different tack, offering reusable stainless steel straws and straw cleaning brushes for sale at the cash register. With all this recent activism, people are starting to say “No straw, please,” when ordering water and drinks.

S202 was referred to the Senate Committee on the Environment and Agriculture, and a hearing date has yet to be announced. Do we really need a straw law? I do hereby summon the Straw Man. The term straw man generally means a person or an argument that is set up to be knocked down, usually to make a point. I invite you to take a shot, or stand behind him. Share your thoughts in the comments section of this blog.

Learn more about real Plastic Waste Reduction Heroes… btw, the straws featured in the artwork above are plant-based and biodegradable.