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JPSWMCCH
October 2nd, 2007, 10:39 AM
I don't know whether this has been discussed much, but how can USMS support "going green," promoting and/or being supportive of being environmentally responsible for clean water to swim in as well as to drink?

Open Water swims, of course, are the perfect venues to remind us all to keep our waters clean for swimming. The Boston swim focuses on this; do other Open Water swims promote cleaner water? What do they do?

Can pool Masters swimmers, clubs, LMSCs promote being "greener"? Encouraging people to take shorter showers is one way. What are other ways?

I think it is a fine idea and good opportunity for USMS to promote this particular aspect of the environment. By the way, all the Great Lakes are down several inches, except for Lake Superior (where, at the moment, we don't have Open Water swims...but who knows, in the future???).

Jennifer Parks, Michigan Masters

knelson
October 2nd, 2007, 10:47 AM
Can pool Masters swimmers, clubs, LMSCs promote being "greener"? Encouraging people to take shorter showers is one way. What are other ways?

How about encouraging pools to keep the water temperature down around 80? Dropping the water temp a few degrees could save lots of energy.

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 10:56 AM
Progress, the reason for the great lakes dropping in level.

The dregging of the St. Cair River causes a massive drain of Lake Huron. Lake Superior level is way down also.

The St Cair River drain should be fixed. But like all problems the investigation of the cause will be a twenty year study which will be too late.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 10:57 AM
How about encouraging pools to keep the water temperature down around 80? Dropping the water temp a few degrees could save lots of energy.

Skimpier bathing suits...stop the destruction of the Lycra forests!!:bolt:

How about getting Electronic entry standardised on a web page, or even an Excel file. or a USMS cards that can be emailed instead of photocopied and 80% of a sheet of paper wasted just to mail it in...might be unpopular but do away with certificates for awards, though this could be done with recycled paper...save some trees, or at minimum, source a discount for recycled paper fo USMS swimmers.

aquageek
October 2nd, 2007, 11:27 AM
Getting back to the topic, here in Charlotte for three years a group organized three lake races. They races benefitted the local riverkeepers group as a large river creates all three lakes. It was very popular and very successful and the highlight of my summer racing. Unfortunately, the couple that organized it has moved, a big blow to local OW racing here.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 11:31 AM
Getting back to the topic, here in Charlotte for three years a group organized three lake races. They races benefitted the local riverkeepers group as a large river creates all three lakes. It was very popular and very successful and the highlight of my summer racing. Unfortunately, the couple that organized it has moved, a big blow to local OW racing here.

paper production pollutes rivers.

At least recycling destroys less resources all round. I'm for E-forms for USMS. Since you're going to generate carbon emissions with whatever you do. That can't be avoided.

Slowswim
October 2nd, 2007, 11:32 AM
efitted the local riverkeepers group as a large river creates all three lakes. It was very popular and very successful and the highlight of my summer racing. Unfortunately, the couple that organized it has moved, a big blow to local OW racing here.

Geek: a possible career change opportunity for you: make tons of money, go green, and do/support something you love. Sounds too good to be true!

Swimmer Bill
October 2nd, 2007, 11:39 AM
Having the 2008 USMS Long Course Nationals in Oregon is the best way I know for USMS to go green.

:bolt:

Peter Cruise
October 2nd, 2007, 12:28 PM
We should compost some of our old notorious threads. Think of all that decaying, organic matter waiting to fertilize our gardens...

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 12:33 PM
Peter are you trying to dreg up dreck here???

Jenifer you have started a good topic.

scyfreestyler
October 2nd, 2007, 12:39 PM
A start would be for people to stop urinating in the pool.

Blackbeard's Peg
October 2nd, 2007, 01:07 PM
Temps idea is good. Showers is definetely good.

I think Stud's paper idea has the best potential for impact. Think of all the entry forms, newsletters and magazines we get in the mail. Our LMSC sends out a newsletter 4x a year. It is well put together, but the pictures don't print well in b/w, printing and postage is expensive, and while we give the option for a multiple-swimmer household to opt out of extras, we give no option for someone to receive a PDF via email. I bet we can save thousands of $ and a lot of trees that way.

Illinois has a standardized entry card they use for practically everything. Completely paperless. A meet web site, email announcement and a link to the entry form. Simple. Brilliant. (of course, if you want to go, you do have to print out the entry form after all, but still).

Furthermore, online entries completely discourage printouts and are a benefit to the meet directors. I can't imagine Nationals with 1500 paper entries. I bet they still get plenty though.

JP, I concur with George - great topic!

scyfreestyler
October 2nd, 2007, 01:13 PM
Every online entry I have completed has suggested that I print a copy to bring to the meet.

swimminlyn
October 2nd, 2007, 01:13 PM
USMS cards that can be emailed instead of photocopied and 80% of a sheet of paper wasted just to mail it in


I copy my card on the back of the entry paper to save paper.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 01:17 PM
USMS cards that can be emailed instead of photocopied and 80% of a sheet of paper wasted just to mail it in


I copy my card on the back of the entry paper to save paper.


Hey that's really good. There some retentive meet directors down Maryland way who specifically ask you to "paste" it in an appropriately sized box...

lol:D

scyfreestyler
October 2nd, 2007, 01:21 PM
I'm going to assume that nobody here is in the logging business.

Blackbeard's Peg
October 2nd, 2007, 01:29 PM
Hey that's really good. There some retentive meet directors down Maryland way who specifically ask you to "paste" it in an appropriately sized box...

Speaking of wasted paper, yeah, that is because i make a paper copy of your entry, with card, for my records (and if your original gets lost), and it helps to have it fit on the entry form w/o overlapping anything important.
I got a copy of a card for the Terrapin Cup that was 5"x8".

Now, stud, remember, entries do get "lost in the mail" :)

I would like to note that we printed our programs on recycled paper and recycled probably 98% of the paper used from entries (envelope, usms card trimmings, copies, etc), signage and results.

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 01:35 PM
I hated swimming in La Bostonais River. The logs heading to the paper mill in LaTuque Quebec.

aquageek
October 2nd, 2007, 01:35 PM
As a triathlete, let me express just how sorry you swimmers do your entries. To enter a tri you do it all via the ether. A swim meet requires 2-3 pages of printing, the envelope, the check, the copy of your card, etc.

Of course, printing the 4 or 5 pages of rules and regulations for the tri generally balances the whole equation out.

I think it would be a good idea for USMS to have meet entry on line via the home page.

Treebox
October 2nd, 2007, 01:35 PM
If Al Gore had not invented the information super highway we wouldn't be in this situation. People driving too fast on it, the upkeep to repave it, the cost of maintaining the bridges... it goes on and on.

Stop Global Whining!

Swimmer Bill
October 2nd, 2007, 01:47 PM
Magic 8-Ball says electronic wonders will occur in the coming months...

:applaud: Hooray for USMS!

geochuck
October 2nd, 2007, 01:50 PM
Thank god you have confirmed Al Gore as the inventor of the internet, some say it was not him.
If Al Gore had not invented the information super highway we wouldn't be in this situation. People driving too fast on it, the upkeep to repave it, the cost of maintaining the bridges... it goes on and on.

Stop Global Whining!

knelson
October 2nd, 2007, 02:09 PM
Online entries for all USMS sanctioned meets would be great. I think the only way for this to work--and to ensure consistency--would be for this to be provided by USMS rather than the individual LMSCs.

Forget filling out the paper entry, writing an actual check for anything these days seems like such an anachronism.

marksman
October 2nd, 2007, 02:10 PM
Water quality is important, there are reasons for it (medical, ecosystem, etc.) that are not political.

They've managed to clean up most of the untreated sewage that was being dumped in the SF bay but they're noticing fish species are still declining due to other (mostly man-made) chemicals in the environment being introduced through runoff. Blue water isn't necessarily ok. It's visually appealing but there can still be other contaminants.

Slowswim
October 2nd, 2007, 03:02 PM
Every online entry I have completed has suggested that I print a copy to bring to the meet.

I think ever Tri I have entered on-line has a "Participants" pull down on the web site. All you do is check there to confirm you are entered.

I hate to mention the fact that saving paper kills trees. Sounds backwards but true. Remember the 70s when their was the big push for recycled paper. Paper comes from farmers not old growth forests. When the tree farmers sales dropped, they were forced to sell off the land for development. So you need another plan for the land like growing corn for fuel or something

Saving paper = parking lots and malls. The theory of unintended consequences.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 03:16 PM
So you need another plan for the land like growing corn for fuel or something

Build swimming pools...

slowfish
October 2nd, 2007, 03:24 PM
Online entries for all USMS sanctioned meets would be great. I think the only way for this to work--and to ensure consistency--would be for this to be provided by USMS rather than the individual LMSCs.

Forget filling out the paper entry, writing an actual check for anything these days seems like such an anachronism.


In running, tris, and even sports rec leagues, everyone uses active.com. is there a reason why swimming couldn't do the same thing? the "convenience fee" is passed either along to the entrant or to the event and that is determined by the director.

i don't know why swim meets could use active.com. from a race (running) directors perspective and an entrants perspective, it's the best thing since electronic timing!

scyfreestyler
October 2nd, 2007, 03:30 PM
Swimconnection.com is what we use out here for USA meets. But as I said before, they suggest that you print out a copy to bring along...just in case. Saving a few pieces of paper is really quite petty in the grand scheme of things. Focusing on energy conservation via carpooling, more economical/fuel efficient vehicles, mass transit, installing CF light bulbs, turning down your heater, turning up your AC, installing insulation, etc. are going to yield a greater benefit to the earth than saving some paper.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 03:36 PM
Swimconnection.com is what we use out here for USA meets. But as I said before, they suggest that you print out a copy to bring along...just in case. Saving a few pieces of paper is really quite petty in the grand scheme of things. Focusing on energy conservation via carpooling, more economical/fuel efficient vehicles, mass transit, installing CF light bulbs, turning down your heater, turning up your AC, installing insulation, etc. are going to yield a greater benefit to the earth than saving some paper.

I DARE Rob Copeland and Jim Matysek to come over and try to make me carpool!

Slowswim
October 2nd, 2007, 03:43 PM
I'm all for light rail. Atlanta has a great rail system, except it doesn't go anywhere anyone wants to. By the time I drive to the MARTA station, I'm basically at work. I have tried to figure how to get to work using mass transite. Assuming everything is on scheulde my 25 minute drive becomes a 3.5 hour commute. I can cut that in half by riding my bike to the station, but the chance of death goes way up.
:notworking:

knelson
October 2nd, 2007, 03:44 PM
Carpooling was something else I was going to mention. Think about how many people are driving to practices and meets by themselves. I know I am most of the time. Heck, this forum could be helpful in organizing carpools to meets. If the entries were online a link could be given to a forum topic for carpooling to each meet.

SwimStud
October 2nd, 2007, 03:46 PM
Carpooling was something else I was going to mention. Think about how many people are driving to practices and meets by themselves. I know I am most of the time. Heck, this forum could be helpful in organizing carpools to meets. If the entries were online a link could be given to a forum topic for carpooling to each meet.

That's a good Idea!

scyfreestyler
October 2nd, 2007, 03:46 PM
I'm all for light rail. Atlanta has a great rail system, except it doesn't go anywhere anyone wants to. By the time I drive to the MARTA station, I'm basically at work. I have tried to figure how to get to work using mass transite. Assuming everything is on scheulde my 25 minute drive becomes a 3.5 hour commute. I can cut that in half by riding my bike to the station, but the chance of death goes way up.
:notworking:

It's certainly not for everybody. Some occupations are simply not compatible with mass transit (I fall into that range of occupations) while other times the area in question does not have a transit system in place capable of providing any benefit.

Slowswim
October 2nd, 2007, 03:56 PM
I'm all for light rail. Atlanta has a great rail system, except it doesn't go anywhere anyone wants to. By the time I drive to the MARTA station, I'm basically at work. I have tried to figure how to get to work using mass transite. Assuming everything is on scheulde my 25 minute drive becomes a 3.5 hour commute. I can cut that in half by riding my bike to the station, but the chance of death goes way up.
:notworking:

Blackbeard's Peg
October 3rd, 2007, 12:18 AM
My new job was very close to metro. I live very close to metro. College Park, where I swim, is also near to a metro station. So when I started the job, I ran the numbers:

Convenience:
I'm a 5 minute walk from my home metro station and work is a 15 minute walk (+ 5 minute free shuttle) at the other end. College Park has a metro station, albiet its about a 30 minute walk from there to the pool. Rollerblades or a UMD bus solve that. And I could get a ride back to the metro after practice from a teammate.

Time:
To work, with the walking, waiting and rides, its ~50 minutes to use the Metro. From work to College Park would be about 15 minutes to metro, 65 minutes on two trains, plus transit time from the CP metro to the pool, say another 15 minutes, for a total of 95 minutes. Practice starts at 630, so i'd probably need to leave work early or swim less of the workout.
On the way home, its a 40 minute train ride, unless I miss the 848 train at CP - then add 20 minutes.

Cost:
Metro to work: $3.20
Work to CP: $3.90
CP to home (rail to bus option: $1.70), full rail: $3.20
Total Metro Daily Cost: $8.80; $10.30

Driving:
to work: 13 miles; work to cp: 21 miles; cp to home: 11 miles == 45 miles total

my car gets ~22 miles per gallon; premium gas is $2.87 at the cheapest place i can find, so 2 gallons, $5.74
car insurance is about $3.39 per day.
car is almost paid off so we'll leave that out
total cost to drive: ~$9.15

since i have the car anyways, add insurance to the cost to take metro.

I opted to drive and am doing my best everywhere else to recycle and save energy.

david.margrave
October 3rd, 2007, 02:05 AM
Kirk! Take the bus like I do!

scyfreestyler: aren't CF bulbs toxic to dispose of?

My own opinion is you don't have to go out of your way to save energy, it'll happen by itself in response to market forces. I've been taking the bus for the last 8 years to/from work (my employer gives me a free pass, and parking downtown would cost a lot), and the commuter lots are a lot more full than they used to be. I think it was the price of gas rather than people voluntarily taking the bus to help the environment.

Another example is the pool I practice at, which has timed valves on the showers.

dorothyrde
October 3rd, 2007, 05:52 AM
No mass transit here. Living in a small town I have to drive to work. This summer I did ride my bike the 12 miles to work on non-swim days. Now it is too dark in the morning, and country roads are a bit dicey with all the combines and trucks. But harvest is going really fast this year, so that is done soon.

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 10:32 AM
Kirk! Take the bus like I do!

scyfreestyler: aren't CF bulbs toxic to dispose of?

My own opinion is you don't have to go out of your way to save energy, it'll happen by itself in response to market forces. I've been taking the bus for the last 8 years to/from work (my employer gives me a free pass, and parking downtown would cost a lot), and the commuter lots are a lot more full than they used to be. I think it was the price of gas rather than people voluntarily taking the bus to help the environment.

Another example is the pool I practice at, which has timed valves on the showers.

If you throw them in your garbage can I suppose. We get special fluorescent disposal containers at work..they can be disposed of correctly. The benefits outweigh the drawbacks, similar to nuclear power in that respect.

knelson
October 3rd, 2007, 11:56 AM
My own opinion is you don't have to go out of your way to save energy, it'll happen by itself in response to market forces.

I disagree. I think we need to go out of the way to save energy.

There's also no downside to using CFL bulbs, either. Yes, they contain small amounts of mercury. Just dispose of them properly.

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 12:11 PM
I disagree. I think we need to go out of the way to save energy.

There will be a very small group of people who feel the way you do. However, as Margrave states, it is pretty much universally accepted that the hook to conservation is market forces, not early adopters or new gizmos. For instance, the sole reason people are sick of SUVs is the cost of gas, and a lesser extent environmental issues. If gas were still $1.25/gallon SUVs would still be hot sellers.

The majority of citizens will not go out of their way to save energy unless there is some economic value to them. Plus, if I have to go out of my way to save energy, doesn't that mean I'm wasting energy?

Stud cited a perfect example. Why would he bother taking mass transit, which is cleaner and ultimately better for our environment, when it is more costly to do so?

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 12:48 PM
... as Margrave states, it is pretty much universally accepted that the hook to conservation is market forces, not early adopters or new gizmos.

The market can only take into account the cost factors it can see. It doesn't, for example, price the carbon emissions into the gas you buy even though there is a cost to cleaning up that particular mess. There is currently no way for the market to take that into account. Taxes are one way (e.g. the proposed "carbon tax" or the taxes on the gas you buy which go to maintain the highway infrastructure) to (rather crudely and artificially) inject such information into the marketplace. Regulation (e.g. CAFE standards) is another. Thusfar the Bush administration has adopted Margrave's and Aquageek's stance, but has done little or nothing to make sure the market has even a crude approximation of the true costs of our activities.

Muppet summed up his view of the costs of commuting by train and car and decided the car was the cheaper alternative. Nowhere in there did he take into account the cost of the pollution generated by his car, which is almost certainly much higher than the per-passenger-mile pollution generated by riding the train. That's not Muppet's fault. He's only looking at the costs he can see. If he did see those costs it's possible he would have decided to take the train. He didn't put in a depreciation cost because his car is almost fully depreciated. I would argue that should still have been included. While as a car ages it stops depreciating as rapidly, the cost to maintain it increase. Consider that the IRS will reimburse you forty-something cents per mile for business use of your car. They don't ask you how old your car is. It's also not a gift from Uncle Sam. That's his estimate of the actual cost to you to operate your car over the long-term - gas, oil, insurange, depreciation, repairs.

Early adopters serve a useful purpose. They buy the iPohones, Teslas and other new gizmos, and thus demonstrate their utility (or conversely, prove they don't work). If there were no early adopters there would be nobody to help drive down the price of such gizmos through economies of scale. In the absence of a complete view of the true costs of a particular activity someone will always have to be the first to sacrifice.

This problem of incompletely accounting for the costs of human activity is just an example of the tragedy of the commons (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Tragedy_of_the_commons).

Skip Montanaro

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 01:00 PM
I should make it clear I don't adopt any political view of conservation, merely a capitalism view. The market always sorts these things out. You try to legislate it, you add costs.

I wholeheartedly disagree with you that the price of items does not reflect the true cost. This is patently untrue. The price you pay for any item fully takes into account the full cost, production, distribution, disposal. If that isn't enough, the government tosses a tax on top of that item to account for environmental issues, trash collection, etc. Why does a case of tap water at Costco cost $6? It's not because of the water price.

The bottom line is you cannot force people to conserve energy unless there is some benefit to them monetarily, crude but true. If you want proof, name the last two times America went nutso over energy, right at the last two oil price spikes.

Capitalism, it works.

poolraat
October 3rd, 2007, 01:20 PM
...... Why does a case of tap water at Costco cost $6? It's not because of the water price......

If you really want to be green, a big step would be to stop buying and using bottled water. Not only is it expensive, but the production and distribution (and disposal of the empty containers is a major waste of resources.

knelson
October 3rd, 2007, 01:23 PM
If you really want to be green, a big step would be to stop buying and using bottled water.

Hear, hear.

And I admit my wife buys bottled water and it drives me nuts. I don't see what the problem is with tap water. I guess at least we're recycling the empties.

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 01:28 PM
We buy a case of bottled and reuse the bottles with tap for several days before tossing them into the recycle bin.

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 01:34 PM
I have tried to go green in the past. See this thread http://forums.usms.org/showthread.php?t=5020&highlight=Price I think the very last post on that thread is very important

david.margrave
October 3rd, 2007, 01:39 PM
If we're talking about hidden costs, I wonder if CF bulb rebates and disposal are taxpayer-subsidized.

I haven't seen a CF bulb at my pool (token reference to swimming for this thread).

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 01:41 PM
I wholeheartedly disagree with you that the price of items does not reflect the true cost. This is patently untrue. The price you pay for any item fully takes into account the full cost, production, distribution, disposal. If that isn't enough, the government tosses a tax on top of that item to account for environmental issues, trash collection, etc. Why does a case of tap water at Costco cost $6? It's not because of the water price.

It costs $6 for a case of tap water at Costco simply because people will pay that much. None of that $6 goes to recycling the plastic bottles or loss of space in your landfill. It goes into Costco's bank account to be paid to their suppliers and their shareholders. I would be real surprised if they are actually paying anyone to dispose of those plastic bottles. What makes you think they do?

Similarly, the price of gasoline doesn't currently contain any components which bear directly on the cost of the pollution generated when you burn that gas.

I agree the marketplace can do the job, but only if it can factor in all the costs. It currently doesn't do that.

Skip

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 01:43 PM
CF bulbs are subsidized by PGE around here, our local gas and electric provider. I have to assume that these subsidies are tied into a rate case that they passed through the CPUC.

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 01:45 PM
If you will reread my post you will note that I also include tax in the price of goods. That tax pays for the disposal, among other things. In NC I pay 40 cents a gallon for gas, in addition to the federal gas tax. Those are direct consumer costs used for a variety of things, including the EPA. I also pay a disposal fee when I buy new tires, in addition to sales tax. Nothing is free in America. If it has a cost, you are paying it.

In addition, those companies also pay taxes on their profits, on the gas they consume to haul their goods and on the upkeep and maintenance of their fleets to comply with pollutions standards (like that ridiculous emissions test I pay for annually on a 2 year old car). All those costs go into the price you pay.

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 01:54 PM
We buy a case of bottled and reuse the bottles with tap for several days before tossing them into the recycle bin.

Yes. But you are making a sacrifice (small though it may be) to do that. You are doing what you can to avoid destruction of the commons (landfill, air, etc). Most people don't do that. They take advantage of you. If the true costs of disposing/recycling those bottles was priced into the cost of the bottled water more people would probably do what you do.

Skip

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 01:56 PM
A couple more random thoughts, then I'll get back to work.

In our city we have alleys. I frequently walk our dog in the alleys so I get to see what people discard. The city provides us with rollaway trash bins (50-60 gallons or so). We (a family of three) rarely fill it up to one-third full unless we have some big project around the house that generates a lot of waste. Some families in our neighborhood (nobody has more than three or four kids) fill up two of these big bins every single week. Many families have one bin that is full or overflowing every single week as well. We sacrifice (pay more than the cost of disposing of our modest amount of garbage). Others probably pay much less than the true cost to dispose of their garbage.

There is one other factor that the marketplace doesn't take into account - affluence. We in the US are the most affluent country on the planet. Paying $3 for a gallon of gas is probably a lot less painful for the average American than for the average Bangladeshi. He is thus much more motivated to make that gallon of gas last (assuming he can even afford some kind of motorized transportation). He might ride a scooter. His wife and three kids might cram onto the scooter somehow (sidecar? storage rack?) or walk much of the time. In any case, he will be much more price sensitive than we are though.

Skip

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 01:56 PM
We just bought a new Tahoe..we need to do something to redeem ourselves.

SwimStud
October 3rd, 2007, 02:00 PM
I agree the marketplace can do the job, but only if it can factor in all the costs. It currently doesn't do that.

Skip

This is true...although Geek may have a point in paying extra...it might not be paying enough extra for the damage.

I've seen a lot of supply and demand, rational market theory, spillover costs and benefits, diamond water paradox talk in this thread....

Pure capitalism doesn't include spillover costs and benefits--by definition that's someone elses problem, if it's free it will be abused.

Read up on the "Tragedy of the Commons" if you missed it in school...we don't have pure capitalism...and it's not working either...

SwimStud
October 3rd, 2007, 02:02 PM
We just bought a new Tahoe..we need to do something to redeem ourselves.

Wait 2x the number of days before you toss the plastic water bottles out...

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 02:04 PM
There is one other factor that the marketplace doesn't take into account - affluence.

I do enjoy your reasonable and thoughtful tone. I disagree with the above statement. I believe the US Market is almost overly concerned with affluence. You really think there is a difference between a pair of Seven jeans for $200 versus a pair of Levi's for $35? Sure, but not six times as much. A service company will charge more in some zip codes versus others. Why does the exact same diamond cost twice as much at Tiffany's as it does at Fred's Diamond Express? It's all about affluence.

We have strayed far from swimming, my apologies.

david.margrave
October 3rd, 2007, 02:11 PM
I regret bringing the market into the discussion.

Preserving waterways and habitats is probably something we can agree on, and which is swimming-related.

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 02:18 PM
Leave it parked in the garage and in twenty years sell it as a low milage antique.

We just bought a new Tahoe..we need to do something to redeem ourselves.

imspoiled
October 3rd, 2007, 02:33 PM
Carpooling was something else I was going to mention. Think about how many people are driving to practices and meets by themselves. I know I am most of the time. Heck, this forum could be helpful in organizing carpools to meets. If the entries were online a link could be given to a forum topic for carpooling to each meet.


That's a good Idea!

Well Stud, if you're driving down you can pick me up on the way to the Sprint Classic.:bouncing:

imspoiled
October 3rd, 2007, 02:42 PM
We just bought a new Tahoe..we need to do something to redeem ourselves.


You can always redeem yourself with cold, hard cash. http://www.carbonfund.org/site/pages/carbon_calculators/

Money really can buy anything!

SwimStud
October 3rd, 2007, 02:49 PM
Well Stud, if you're driving down you can pick me up on the way to the Sprint Classic.:bouncing:


I'm staying until Monday...

Leonard Jansen
October 3rd, 2007, 02:56 PM
The benefits outweigh the drawbacks, similar to nuclear power in that respect.

I live less than 3 miles from Three Mile Island. The view from here is slightly different on that issue.

-LBJ

Slowswim
October 3rd, 2007, 02:57 PM
I'm so un-green. Since buying my house 9 months ago, I've dropped over 100 trees in my yard. My plan is to burn them as soon as I'm allowed.

Compared to the south Georgia swamps burning for weeks, my carbon impact is zero.

I guess I am green after all.:applaud:
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slknight
October 3rd, 2007, 02:58 PM
In our city we have alleys. I frequently walk our dog in the alleys so I get to see what people discard. The city provides us with rollaway trash bins (50-60 gallons or so). We (a family of three) rarely fill it up to one-third full unless we have some big project around the house that generates a lot of waste. Some families in our neighborhood (nobody has more than three or four kids) fill up two of these big bins every single week. Many families have one bin that is full or overflowing every single week as well. We sacrifice (pay more than the cost of disposing of our modest amount of garbage). Others probably pay much less than the true cost to dispose of their garbage.



Thought you might be interested in the system in our town. We have a Pay As You Throw (PAYT) system. You pay by the barrel (by affixing a pre-paid tag to your can). You can throw out as many barrels as you want, as long as you pay for them. The price is somewhere around $5 per standard trash can. Recycling is free.

david.margrave
October 3rd, 2007, 02:59 PM
Well Stud, if you're driving down you can pick me up on the way to the Sprint Classic.:bouncing:


IS that the GMU meet? I wish I was going. I'm a GMU graduate and I've never even seen their pool, it was built after I moved to Seattle.

swimmieAvsFan
October 3rd, 2007, 03:12 PM
If you throw them in your garbage can I suppose. We get special fluorescent disposal containers at work..they can be disposed of correctly. The benefits outweigh the drawbacks, similar to nuclear power in that respect.


I live less than 3 miles from Three Mile Island. The view from here is slightly different on that issue.

-LBJ


and i grew up about 5 miles away from TMI, on the other side of the river from LBJ. as in, from my parents' backyard, i can see the cooling towers...

i'd have to agree with LBJ that the view is different for people like us...

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 03:16 PM
Probably the easiest green thing to do when it gets cold wear a sweater in the house, don't turn up the heat.

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 03:19 PM
Probably the easiest green thing to do when it gets cold wear a sweater in the house, don't turn up the heat.

Or move to Mexico, wear shorts and don't turn on the a/c!!! :drink:

Skip

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 03:19 PM
More people die from car accidents in this country every day than have ever died in this country from nuclear reactor accidents I bet. I can understand how views may differ for those who live near TMI, but in the grand scheme of things I feel that nuclear power is a great resource that happens to be terribly underutilized in this country.

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 03:31 PM
The Three Mile Island accident happened 28.5 years ago. Not a single nuclear accident since in the US. More people have died in coal mine accidents to feed our coal fired power plants in the past year than died in the TMI incident. Using TMI as an excuse to oppose nuclear is like using the Pinto as a reason to not drive a car.

smontanaro
October 3rd, 2007, 03:50 PM
Using TMI as an excuse to oppose nuclear is like using the Pinto as a reason to not drive a car.

Hey, whatever gets you to take the train! :D

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 03:50 PM
I am going to do my green thing on Oct 20th Mexico here I come.

Or move to Mexico, wear shorts and don't turn on the a/c!!! :drink:

Skip

SwimStud
October 3rd, 2007, 03:52 PM
The Three Mile Island accident happened 28.5 years ago. Not a single nuclear accident since in the US. More people have died in coal mine accidents to feed our coal fired power plants in the past year than died in the TMI incident. Using TMI as an excuse to oppose nuclear is like using the Pinto as a reason to not drive a car.

It was a good enough reason not to drive that car...besides you can't fit your gun rack in a pinto

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 03:58 PM
Well, how dangerous can LBJ really think it is? He still lives there it seems. Don't you Leonard?

swimmieAvsFan
October 3rd, 2007, 04:04 PM
i think most people's problem with TMI is not necessarily nuclear power, but the fact that southcentral PA is getting all the problems of the past and any potential problems of the future, without getting any of the benefit of said nuclear power.

i.e. what most people don't know is that nearly all of the electricity generated at TMI is destined for Philly and NJ.

how would you feel if you had a nuclear reactor in your backyard and didn't get any of the "environmentally friendly" electricity from it???

Slowswim
October 3rd, 2007, 04:14 PM
I may be wrong on this, but TMI (while a failure to produce power in one reactor) was a success. The shut down systems worked and no radiation leaked out. :confused:

Unlike Chernobyl where the safety system failed.:bolt:

Please correct me if I am wrong, I wasn't old enough to remember the day it happened. Its called the "Worst Civilian Nuclear Accident in the US" because its the only one (Wiki). If this is true, than the US record is perfect.

swimmieAvsFan
October 3rd, 2007, 04:28 PM
I may be wrong on this, but TMI (while a failure to produce power in one reactor) was a success. The shut down systems worked and no radiation leaked out. :confused:

Unlike Chernobyl where the safety system failed.:bolt:

Please correct me if I am wrong, I wasn't old enough to remember the day it happened. Its called the "Worst Civilian Nuclear Accident in the US" because its the only one (Wiki). If this is true, than the US record is perfect.

if you believe the government reports... most of which were funded in part by some entity in the nuclear power industry... i know i'm biased, but that seems like a bit of a conflict of interest to me. not to mention that the ruined, unused reactor is just sitting there. which opens up the possibilities for who knows what kind of problems in the future.

as for the comparison to Chernobyl, the two plants were of totally different designs, and i don't think the design at TMI would have allowed for an actual explosion like Chernobyl. also, the actual circumstances between the 2 are different- at TMI, the accident occurred during normal operational conditions. at Chernobyl, they were actually experimenting on the safety systems...

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 04:28 PM
Another benefit to nuclear reactors is the ability to make weapons from the byproduct.

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 04:31 PM
Another benefit to nuclear reactors is the ability to make weapons from the byproduct.

Good point, wish I had thought of that. We need the nukes to keep Iran at bay so I can have all the oil I need to power my Tahoe (I have one also). We should also threaten Canada, they have a lot of oil I'd like to get my hands on. Oh, and Chavez as well, he is bothersome, we need a regime change there.

Slowswim
October 3rd, 2007, 04:39 PM
Another benefit to nuclear reactors is the ability to make weapons from the byproduct.

To shoot at the asteroid that's going to hit us.:drink:

Yes, the government should never be trusted to police itself, but if there was leakage or other issues there are lots of private groups that are invested in proving nuclear power is unsafe. Something would have come up by now.

I believe hydrogen for the Tahoe owners is the way to go. Burn it and all you get is pure water. Use the water to fill pools that are built from not using paper!
:groovy:
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geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 04:39 PM
Geek we are too nice, most of our oil goes to the USA, you don't have to attack just throw money at us.

scyfreestyler
October 3rd, 2007, 04:42 PM
Geek we are too nice, most of our oil goes to the USA, you don't have to attack just throw money at us.

Our money is of little value these days. Why don't you just give it to us? Come on, be a pal!

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 04:51 PM
At the price we charge and the value of your $ we are giving it to you. We also send electricity, it was at a very cut rate and now with the new exchange rate, we are giving it to you

knelson
October 3rd, 2007, 05:25 PM
Probably the easiest green thing to do when it gets cold wear a sweater in the house, don't turn up the heat.

or buy a programmable thermostat so you can turn the heat down at night and during the day when you're at work.

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 05:58 PM
We have sold our house and have an apartment. We have never switched the gas heat on. The electric heat thermostat is set at 10 degrees centigrade for the winter and it very seldom comes on. The only heat we use is when the stove or oven is on. We do a lot of cuddling. Our windows are nearly always open. We do not use an air conditioner ever even when we go to Mexico we go as natural as possible. In Mexico we walk and don't drive.


or buy a programmable thermostat so you can turn the heat down at night and during the day when you're at work.

SwimStud
October 3rd, 2007, 06:17 PM
We do a lot of cuddling. Our windows are nearly always open.

Is this some sort of kinky, Canadian invitation??? Or are you just bragging?
:lmao:

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 06:22 PM
No invitation - I should have said the widow is open so to keep warm we cuddle. Sorry!!!

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 06:38 PM
Jenifer have we drifted too far from your Going Green Thread?

I don't know whether this has been discussed much, but how can USMS support "going green," promoting and/or being supportive of being environmentally responsible for clean water to swim in as well as to drink?

Open Water swims, of course, are the perfect venues to remind us all to keep our waters clean for swimming. The Boston swim focuses on this; do other Open Water swims promote cleaner water? What do they do?

Can pool Masters swimmers, clubs, LMSCs promote being "greener"? Encouraging people to take shorter showers is one way. What are other ways?

I think it is a fine idea and good opportunity for USMS to promote this particular aspect of the environment. By the way, all the Great Lakes are down several inches, except for Lake Superior (where, at the moment, we don't have Open Water swims...but who knows, in the future???).

Jennifer Parks, Michigan Masters

aquageek
October 3rd, 2007, 07:10 PM
FYI geochuck - you use less gas driving with AC on and the windows up than you do driving hot and sweaty with the windows down. Just read an article on that.

geochuck
October 3rd, 2007, 07:36 PM
The natural AC is sweat.

JPSWMCCH
October 4th, 2007, 10:25 AM
Yes, I think we have gone too far from the idea of the thread. I asked what USMS members, as swimmers, coaches, administrators could do environmentally, particularly about enhancing and encouraging cleaner water...really, in relation to our sport, which we do in water. I am very surprised that we have not had more Open Water comments!

The comments on shorter, not as hot, showers are good. Keeping the temp. down a bit on the pool water is good, too. Trying to minimize paper, of course, is good (we have a river near here, the Kalamazoo, which has/had paper mills polluting it for years...it flows into Lake Michigan!)

But where are the Open Water comments? I know the Manhattan swims have tried to promote cleaner water for years, particularly the Hudson but the other waters they swim in, too! What do or what can Open Water Swims do to promote cleaner water in their venue? My family and I do a team Triathlon in Lake Macatawa (once named Black Lake...by the way, the CEO of "Blackwater" comes from this area) that empties into Lake Michigan and we almost didn't get to swim this year because of an e coli reading the week before the Triathlon!!

If we're going to make a big deal out of Open Water Swims...meaning we're (USMS) going really try to market them more, I believe we must promote cleaner water! How can we, as an organization, as well as we, as individuals in this sport do this?? That's what I'm asking....looking for more positive ideas. Does just scheduling an Open Water swim in a local body of water do it? Or do we need to actively get involved in trying not to have boats empty their bilges or companies dump their refuse into our swimming area? JP

geochuck
October 4th, 2007, 10:47 AM
Many years ago there was a unique swim In Hamilton Ontario, The Cross Hamilton Bay Swim. It was about 2 miles. Hamilton is a very industrial town and sewage and industrial waste went into the bay. The big joke was that it was so puluted you could walk across the bay. By the early 40's they stopped all swimming in the bay. We cheated a bit. http://www.hamiltonharbour.ca/documents/articles/Birds-muddying-waters-TheSpec_16Aug06.pdf This article says swimming was banned in 1924 but races accross the bay were still held in the early 40s and they used to swim in LaSalle park beach in 1946. I know I was there.

They have cleaned up the bay and when I was in Hamilton a few years ago I saw pictures in the paper of kids swimming in the places that I had swum in 1939. They are really doing a good job.

aquageek
October 4th, 2007, 11:35 AM
Or do we need to actively get involved in trying not to have boats empty their bilges or companies dump their refuse into our swimming area?

I'd rather see USMS, with their very low and fair dues, focus on swimming. There are plenty of environmental tree hugging groups that have the expertise and funding to take on environmental issues.

knelson
October 4th, 2007, 01:22 PM
JP, I know you missed Big Shoulders this year, but did you know one of the beneficiaries of the swim starting this year is the Great Lakes Alliance (http://www.greatlakes.org/)?

I think this is more in line with where you were going with this thread.

ViveBene
October 4th, 2007, 01:27 PM
Jennifer,

It seems to me you are raising a number of issues that don't have a collective answer. Some of the pollution emission is controlled (or permitted) by state legislature. Most swimming orgs are staffed by volunteer or low-paid individuals who do not have the time, expertise, or interest to lobby. Yes, Lake Michigan is low, but it is always low in the fall.

Your best allies might be fishers (used to be fishermen), just as wilderness preservers and tree huggers have found a strong ally in the hunting lobby, which is interested in careful husbandry of resources and habitat to enjoy its hobby.

I do not think there is a single simple answer. Do you read the swim mags on-line rather than in paper form? Resources, including water, go into the electronics that allow you to do so. Nor am I sure what you are asking. Do you want US Masters Swim as an org to do something specific? What would that be? As a nonprofit org, and, more to the point, not wealthy org, it faces significant constraints. Wealthier nonprofits, such as Sierra Club, which would presumably attract private funding, are in better position to protect waters through protecting watersheds. I agree with aquageek that such matters are best left to deep-pocketed, dedicated orgs, some of which get federal money -- your tax dollars -- to carry out their good work.

The Hudson got cleaned up through the actions of local individuals, and it took a long time, but perhaps that is a model for you to follow. I do not think anyone here disagrees with your desire for greener, bluer water, but translating that into action can take a lifetime. Do you want to try to do something where you live and swim?

What specifically do you seek from this forum?

Regards, VB

ViveBene
October 4th, 2007, 01:40 PM
JP, I know you missed Big Shoulders this year, but did you know one of the beneficiaries of the swim starting this year is the Great Lakes Alliance (http://www.greatlakes.org/) (http://www.greatlakes.org/)?

Good example, and a good suggestion for starting in one's backyard. Perhaps the organizers of a meet that enjoys Great Lakes water could be asked to make a donation of some kind. Lots of organizers simply don't know about Great Lakes Alliance. And one would want to be sure that some of the fee money so directed actually got used to promote water health rather than tourism.

VB

david.margrave
October 4th, 2007, 02:46 PM
Electronic distribution of USMS swimmer magazine is one idea. That may or may not be practical, advertisers may not pay at the same rate for a different format.

smontanaro
October 5th, 2007, 09:25 AM
If we're going to make a big deal out of Open Water Swims...meaning we're (USMS) going really try to market them more, I believe we must promote cleaner water!

Jennifer, et al,

Or water conservation? Pasted here is a note I received from Debra Shore (right after the forum note containing your note), one of the members of the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District of Greater Chicago:


You Asked for Them - We Got Them!
Rain Barrels for Sale.

Rain Barrels
I am happy to report that the Metropolitan Water Reclamation District has a new program to sell rain barrels to Cook County residents for the bargain price of $40. (Limit is 2). These 50-gallon barrels in fetching shades of sky blue or black have screens to prevent mosquitoes from breeding yet can easily capture rainwater from your gutters or downspout.

Ask yourselves this: Why do we use drinking water that has been filtered, treated and piped to our faucet to irrigate our gardens and flowerbeds when we could be using perfectly good water delivered free by Nature instead? For a variety of reasons, a simple rain barrel connected to your downspout to capture rainwater off your roof makes a lot of sense.

Rain barrels are becoming increasingly popular among homeowners throughout the Chicago metropolitan area. Harvesting rainwater saves money and it's good for the environment. If you use rainwater collected in rain barrels to water your garden or even to wash your car, you are not using - or paying for - filtered, treated drinking water. And the captured rain, when used to water your garden during a dry spell, then helps to recharge our underground aquifers rather than flowing into the sewers as it would during a storm.

A 90-gallon rain barrel can hold 0.24 inch of rainfall from a 600 square foot roof. In a study conducted by the Milwaukee Metropolitan Sewerage District, if two 90-gallon rain barrels were installed at 40,000 homes, the amount of rain captured every year would be 243 million gallons. That's 243 million gallons of liquid assets that Nature delivers direct to your yard, that you don't have to pay for, and that won't require treatment at a sewage treatment plant - wow!

Details and an online order form are at mwrd.org/mo/barrel/barrel.aspx
.

Barrels are available for pickup at three District locations during October:
Stickney Water Reclamation Plant, 6001 West Pershing Rd., Cicero (pickup: 10/23/2007 and 10/27/2007)

Calumet Water Reclamation Plant, 400 East 130th St., Chicago (pickup: 10/16/2007 and 10/20/2007)

North Side Water Reclamation Plant, 3500 West Howard St., Skokie (pickup: 10/30/2007 and 11/3/2007)

Rain barrels will also be available at a household hazardous waste collection day in Oak Forest at 159th and Lorel Avenue on October 27. Drop off your expired medicines, old solvents, fluorescent bulbs, batteries, oil-based paints and pick up a rain barrel to take home! See http://mwrd.org/Activities/HHHW1007.pdf
.

Why not start making deposits in your own water bank? It's one investment that makes total sense.


Skip

ViveBene
October 5th, 2007, 11:24 AM
Jennifer, et al,
Or water conservation?
Rain Barrels

Why not start making deposits in your own water bank? It's one investment that makes total sense.

Skip

Great idea! In a wilderness area where I hike, there is a rain barrel that's been there forever. Hikers fill up and drink after treating.

Thanks for the info.

Jennifer, I hope I haven't discouraged you. Sometimes all it takes is one person to get the ball rolling. Did anyone ever discover the source of E. coli in your swim area?

Regards, VB

geochuck
October 5th, 2007, 11:28 AM
I think you will find ecoli in most water that is tested. Thanks to chlorine it is not a major problem.

ViveBene
October 5th, 2007, 11:48 AM
I think you will find ecoli in most water that is tested. Thanks to chlorine it is not a major problem.

Yes, I'm not surprised. Once had E coli -- or something very like it -- that I picked up from hospital floor. It wasn't as terrible as they make it out to be. Couple of days of discomfort; the organism attacks the gut lining, so you bleed a bit, then it's over.

The OP mentioned something that concerned her and led her thinking along a "clean water" path.

Regards, VB

Slowswim
October 5th, 2007, 01:27 PM
A rain barrel wouldn't do me much good with the drought Georgia is in.:whiteflag:

ViveBene
October 5th, 2007, 01:51 PM
A rain barrel would do me much good with the drought Georgia is in.

The rain barrel is for "the drought next time."

I hope Jennifer comes back!

Regards, VB

scyfreestyler
October 5th, 2007, 02:19 PM
Things have a way of working out...global warming is melting glaciers giving us more water to desalinate and use for drinking, irrigation, etc.

Save those barrels for crude oil.

geochuck
April 22nd, 2008, 04:27 PM
Oil $117 a barrell today. What about tomorrow???

It is easy to stop this.

1. Walk instead of drive for short trips.
2. Ride a bicyle instead of drive.
3. Don't buy gas.

ViveBene
April 22nd, 2008, 05:15 PM
Oil $117 a barrell today. What about tomorrow???

It is easy to stop this.

1. Walk instead of drive for short trips.
2. Ride a bicyle instead of drive.
3. Don't buy gas.

Hi -
Those are all good things to do, but I don't think high oil prices can be stopped. There is a large consensus that we are at peak oil right now (meaning we are about to start on the downslope of using up the world's nonrenewable supply, remaining oil becoming increasingly costly to get, whatever) or peak oil is right around the corner. I do expect some ups and downs - gosh, oil could creep down to $89 a barrel - but I expect increasingly costlier oil as both a long- and short-term trend.

And there are ever more of us driving cars, using refrigerators, flying planes, throwing out plastic bags.

Regards, VB

Just to add a note: I was out taking a beach walk along southern Lake Michigan this morning and talking with geezers about water levels over past 25 years. I remember when the lake was ca. 5 feet higher and the now exposed sandy beach was a sandy bottom underwater. The lake is used for domestic water, and the enormous growth around Chicago, especially in the southern suburbs, has created a demand that has lowered lake levels permanently. (They say.)

lefty
April 22nd, 2008, 05:35 PM
Things have a way of working out...global warming is melting glaciers giving us more water to desalinate and use for drinking, irrigation, etc.

Save those barrels for crude oil.

I had a conversation about this with someone who sells desalination units in the middle east for General Electric. The problem is that it is very expenisve to do this, and more to the point you need to use energy to desalinate water. When water shortages become a real problem there are no cheap solutions.

scyfreestyler
April 22nd, 2008, 06:09 PM
I had a conversation about this with someone who sells desalination units in the middle east for General Electric. The problem is that it is very expenisve to do this, and more to the point you need to use energy to desalinate water. When water shortages become a real problem there are no cheap solutions.


Very true. The reality is that we need water to survive, so no matter what the cost, the problem must be solved.

Blackbeard's Peg
April 22nd, 2008, 09:07 PM
Oil $117 a barrell today. What about tomorrow???

Part of the problem here is the weak dollar. If you adjust this to account for the crappy exchange rate, the price would be high, but wouldn't look so bad.

2fish&1whale
April 22nd, 2008, 09:25 PM
When you attend meets do you buy bottled water?
If so, are recycling receptacles usually offered?
I would venture to say No.

99% of swim meets that I have attended as either a spectator or as a volunteer,
recycling for the hundreds/thousands of plastic bottles is non existing.
I find myself often being the only one who is walking around the pool deck,
collecting what remains, knowing full well that most have already gone in the trash.
This is not an issue with the bottles themselves, but with offering the means to separate so they can at least be recycled.
If you are in any way involved with organizing swimming events consider this small change in behavior.
Encourage your co swimmers or AG kids to use re-usable bottles, ask your pool,
gym or YMCA to offer recycling bins throughout the facility.