My New Lawn Sign


  • Rain and wind carry leaves and other pollutants into the storm drain.
  • Most of our storm drains empty directly into Minnehaha Creek or Lake Harriet; a few drain directly to the Mississippi River.
  • Leaves and grass clippings contain phosphorus.
  • Phosphorus is the main pollutant stimulating the growth of algae in the lakes and creek.
  • It is a violation of City ordinances to rake leaves into the street.
  • We are all part of the solution to preserving water quality.

Syrian Climate Refugees

Climate Refugees                                           

A picture I took in Jordan(Syria's neighbor) this spring.
A picture I took in Jordan(Syria’s neighbor) this spring.

This is an incredible story about how drought was one of the sparks for the Syrian Civil War.

From 2006 to 2010 Syria had a serious drought.  Farmers lost 80% of their cattle, and 60% of the country became desert.  With farming losses they became Climate Refugees moving to the Syrian cities looking for work. The Syrian government was not happy with the situation.  As their wells dried up they needed to drill new wells.  The permits for new wells were awarded on a sectarian basis so they had to drill illegal wells.  They felt their country was discriminating against them.  Drought creating conflict. Conflict after conflict, and then a civil war!

Listen to the NPR story:

Labor Day Thoughts

 We value our Employees                           

Map of minimum wage rates in the United States...
Map of minimum wage rates in the United States. See List of U.S. minimum wages. (Photo credit: Wikipedia) Red is the lowest, and green is the highest

The following is written on my yogurt container, ” We value our employees.  We are a family-run company in California with just over 50 employees.   We pay a competitive wage to all our staff members and provide an excellent benefit package, including full health care insurance for all who work here, and their families.”  On Labor Day let’s praise companies that value their employees!!

According to NPR 1 in 4 American workers makes less that $10.00 an hour.  We give these “job creators” so much political power.  Can we please have “Living Wage Job Creators” and job creators that understand we need to take care of our earth for the future generations!!

As consumers we must reward the companies that pay a living wage and offer affordable health care to their employees!!  Happy Labor Day!!

living wage
living wage (Photo credit: