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  • El gran diseño - Stephen Hawking & Leonard Mlodinow June 23, 2017
    Aun antes de aparecer, este libro ha venido precedido, en todos los medios de comunicación, de una extraordinaria polémica sobre  sus conclusiones: que tanto nuestro universo como los otros muchos universos posibles surgieron de la nada, porque su creación no requiere de la intervención de ningún Dios o ser sobrenatural, sino que todos los universos pro […]
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  • La tabla rasa - Steven Pinker June 23, 2017
    La concepción que podamos tener de la naturaleza humana afecta a todos los aspectos de nuestra vida, desde la forma en que educamos a nuestros hijos hasta las ideas políticas que defendemos. En La tabla rasa , Steven Pinker explora la idea de la naturaleza humana y sus aspectos éticos, emocionales y políticos. Demuestra que muchos intelectuales han negado su […]
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  • Ask the Brains, Part 1 - Scientific American Editors June 23, 2017
    Why do we do the things we do? The human brain is a marvelous, mysterious piece of evolution that on one hand empowers us to be rational, self-aware and innovative. On the other, the disciplines of psychiatry and psychology are a testament to our attempts to understand the human brain and behavior. Why do we persist in believing opinions despite scientific e […]
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  • Ágilmente - Estanislao Bachrach June 23, 2017
    Bachrach es Doctor en biología molecular y explica el funcionamiento del cerebro. A través de ello, da consejos y herramientas para ser más creativos y felices en el trabajo y en la vida. La neurociencia es clara: el cerebro aprende hasta el último día de vida. La creatividad puede expandirse. Tu mente, mediante la aplicación de las técnicas correctas, puede […]
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  • Réussir sa mort - Fabrice Hadjadj June 23, 2017
    Ce n'est pas nous qui réussissons notre mort, c'est elle qui ne nous rate pas. À nous toutefois de ne pas la rater non plus. Que signifie dès lors réussir sa mort ? Avec verve, humour, espièglerie, mais vérité et sincérité, Fabrice Hadjadj nous invite à passer du confort au combat, à choisir la vie alors même que nous mourons et que nous mourrons. […]
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  • Inteligencia emocional para niños. Guía práctica para padres y educadores - Mireia Golobardes Subirana & Sandra Celeiro González June 23, 2017
    ¿Cómo podemos enseñar a los más pequeños a gestionar sus emociones? ¿Cómo ayudar a nuestros hijos a mejorar en sus relaciones con los demás? ¿Cómo facilitar a nuestros alumnos su capacidad para identificar sus emociones y la de los demás y favorecer relaciones sanas y positivas, con empatía y respeto? ¿Cómo contribuir a que padres y profesores puedan también […]
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  • La teoría del todo - Stephen W. Hawking June 23, 2017
    Una manera clara y amena de acercarse a los misterios del universo. En esta esclarecedora obra, el gran físico británico Stephen Hawking nos ofrece una historia del universo, del big bang a los agujeros negros. En siete pasos, Hawking logra explicar la historia del universo, desde las primeras teorías del mundo griego y de la época medieval hasta las más com […]
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  • La física del futuro - Michio Kaku June 23, 2017
    Un recorrido asombroso a través de los próximos cien años de revolución científica. El futuro ya se está inventando en los laboratorios de los científicos más punteros de todo el mundo. Con toda probabilidad, en 2100 controlaremos los ordenadores a través de diminutos sensores cerebrales y podremos mover objetos con el poder de nuestras mentes, la inteligenc […]
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  • EnCambio - Estanislao Bachrach June 23, 2017
    EnCambio te va a permitir alumbrar los procesos por los cuales te comportás de determinada manera con el fin de dejar atrás aquellos hábitos y conductas que ya no te sirven. El objetivo es que aprendas del potencial que tiene tu cerebro para cambiar y la capacidad que tenés vos para modificarlo. Este año cambio de trabajo, empiezo el gimnasio, bajo esos kili […]
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  • Breve historia de mi vida - Stephen Hawking June 23, 2017
    La mente maravillosa de Stephen Hawking ha deslumbrado al mundo entero revelando los misterios del universo. Ahora, por primera vez, el cosmólogo más brillante de nuestra era explora, con una mirada reveladora, su propia vida y evolución intelectual. Breve historia de mi vida cuenta el sorprendente viaje de Stephen Hawking desde su niñez […]
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Photo: The simple pleasures of wild horses

Our photo of the day comes from West of Sundre, Alberta Canada […]

Prefab workers’ housing to be built out of cross laminated timber

Little wood boxes will be stacked into really big building on remote BC fracking site. […]

Calgary city councillors discuss returning fluoride to water supply

One study and a pile of anecdotal evidence has shown that perhaps the decision to remove fluoride in 2011 wasn’t such a great idea. […]

Alberta wildfire was the costliest natural disaster in Canadian history

Fort McMurray residents look over the damage as wildfire evacuees trickle back to their homes. REUTERS/Topher Seguin

Alberta wildfire was the costliest natural disaster in Canadian history

By on Jul 7, 2016Share

The wildfire that ripped through Alberta, Canada’s Fort McMurray area in June devastated homes, boreal forests, and tar sands oil production. Now that the dust has settled, another scary aspect of the fire has emerged: the cost.

All told, the Fort McMurray wildfire cost $3.6 billion in Canadian currency (that’s $2.8 billion USD), the Insurance Bureau of Canada announced on Thursday, making it the costliest natural disaster in Canadian history.

According to the bureau, the costs broke down as follows: 27,000 personal-property claims with an average claim of $81,000 each; 12,000 auto claims averaging $15,000; and more than 5,000 business claims which averaged over $250,000 (including the cost of work closures).

That’s more than double the expense of the previous most-costly-natural-disaster-in-Canadian-history, a 2013 flood in southern Alberta that cost $1.7 billion in insurance claims.

These billion-dollar disasters will be less “natural” in the future, with climate change fueling longer and more ferocious wildfire seasons.

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Photo: Mealtime for the red-winged blackbirds

Papa bird shares a high-protein treat with the kid. […]

North Dakota Landowner Continues Fight Against Big Oil

Big oil lost a skirmish in late December when North Dakota Grand Forks District Judge Debbie Kleven ordered Canada’s Enbridge Energy Partners to pay farmland owner James Botsford $45 thousand of $60 thousand in attorney fees. Judge Kleven also ruled that Enbridge would lose their easement if the proposed pipeline is not completed within five years. North Dakota Pipeline Company LLC (NDPL) had sued Botsford and his wife for the right to an easement over farmland located in Emarado, ND. NDPL is a joint venture between Enbridge Energy Partners and Williston Basin Pipe Line LLC, an indirect subsidiary of the Marathon Petroleum Corporation. Marathon will be the line’s anchor shipper. The corporation is qualified to do business in North Dakota through the North Dakota Public Service Commission (NDPC), but is registered in Delaware. Marathon Petroleum is funding 37.5 percent of the Sandpiper Pipeline Project and will hold an approximate 27 percent interest in the North Dakota Pipeline Company when the Sandpiper Pipeline is completed. On the issue of eminent domain, Judge Kleven sided with Enbridge and issued a final order of condemnation that granted North Dakota Pipeline Company a 99-year easement to construct a 24-inch pipeline to transport oil across the Botsford land. The Botsfords would still have the right to the land for “surface agricultural uses.” Botsford’s land is a lynchpin in the proposed $2.6 billion Sandpiper Pipeline, a project that would carry Bakken crude oil from western North Dakota to refineries in Superior, Wisconsin. It remains to be seen how the recent collapse of oil prices will affect the proposed pipeline, which is also facing stiff opposition in neighboring Minnesota. The line is proposed to carry fracked oil from the Bakken Oil Field across the White Earth Reservation and endangered wetlands in northern Minnesota. The Sandpiper includes a new 375,000 barrel per day, 233-mile, 30-inch diameter line to be built extending the system from Clearbrook, MN to connect with the Lakehead Pipeline terminal at Superior, Wisconsin. Minnesota tribal nations are faced with a potential oil super corridor through sacred wild rice and fishing waters. In December, the Minnesota Supreme Court denied petitions by Enbridge to vacate a Minnesota Court of Appeals decision requiring an Environmental Impact Statement. Graphic Courtesy of Honor the Earth When the Botsford case originally reached North Dakota Central Judicial Court in August 2015, the filing by the oil company claimed a right to exercise power of eminent domain, allowing the Enbridge subsidiary to enter and condemn Botsford’s land, use right of way, casements, and the property for the construction, maintenance, or authorization of the Sandpiper Pipeline. In August testimony Botsford told the judge that there was a possible leak from an older pipeline on an adjoining parcel that Botsford owns. When Botsford mentioned the Enbridge record of over 800 spills and leaks in the past decade, Enbridge (NDPL) objected and the judge disallowed the statement into the record. A jury trial was avoided when NDPL and Botsford reached an agreement whereby certain issues were reserved for appeal and that the judge would determine compensation for attorney fees. The heart of the Botsford’s legal response at that time was the “Abusive overreach of the use of eminent domain by a (foreign) corporation for private gain,” Botsford said. “They (Enbridge) want a 99 year lease that they get whether the pipeline is built or not and that they can sell to any other entity for any other purpose at any time in the 99 years. Eminent domain to take private property is supposed to be restricted to a particular public purpose.” James Botsford in August 2015 speaking to filmmaker Keri Pickett for the documentary “First Daughter and the Black Snake” Botsford argued that the condemnation order on his property exceeded statutory authority because it seeks an easement to survey, locate, construct, operate, and maintain (including cathodic [corrosion] ), activities necessary for the transportation of crude petroleum and ANY product, “by-product and derivative thereof.” The court agreed with Botsford that the language of “crude petroleum and any product, by-product and derivative thereof” is too broad. “Oil” in this case is defined by North Dakota statute and means oil and hydrocarbons produced at the wellhead in liquid form, excluding gas. Botsford filed an appeal in the North Dakota Supreme Court on January 15. The issues on appeal include whether NDPL abused the power of eminent domain, since Enbridge is a Canadian company using U.S. law for its own profit purposes. Secondly, if the court upholds eminent domain, Botsford is demanding that the pipeline carry only North Dakota oil and not Alberta tar sands oil carried by that pipe or another adjacent pipe that would fit in the easement. The rejection of TransCanada’s Keystone XL expansion project has limited the ability of volatile tar sands oil to reach U.S. refineries. In an email, Jim Botsford offered an analysis that directly relates to pipeline protests in Minnesota. If the courts ultimately rule that Enbridge gets an easement through Botsford’s lynchpin property, it should be contingent on the Sandpiper receiving approval all the way to the refineries on Lake Superior. “If the whole thing isn’t approved then it’s a pipeline to nowhere, and no public purpose is served,” Botsford wrote. Whether there will be any international market for Alberta crude, given the current crash of oil prices, depends on the impact of the addition of Iranian oil in the marketplace and China’s appetite for crude. That question may be moot, since Alberta’s crude is partially landlocked due to the U.S. rejection of the Keystone XL. However, the State Department has quietly allowed the Alberta Clipper project to move forward with little public scrutiny. Also known as Line 67, the Clipper and the Keystone were both proposed for the purpose of transporting tar sands oil from Alberta to the United States in huge quantities. The Enbridge tar sands pipeline would be bigger than the Keystone XL. President Obama may have condemned the Keystone XL, but the Clipper has been quietly allowed to move forward. If completed, this hodgepodge of pipelines would deliver 850,000 barrels per day from Alberta to Houston. Despite media reports that oil production is at a standstill in North Dakota, the North Dakota Industrial Commission Department of Mineral Resources says oil production in November 2015 was 1,176,314 barrels per day (preliminary), while the all-time high was 1,227,483 barrels per day in December 2014. Rig counts are down and employment is falling, but oil flows near record production. Still, Botsford is standing firm on his small parcel; planting his banner on ancestral farmland and fighting the seemingly invincible forces of big oil. This story continues to steal a page from the saga of Jeanne d’Arc, La Pucelle d’Orléans, a teenage girl who fought the seemingly unbeatable English army at Orleans in the fifteenth century, and won. — This feed and its contents are the property of The Huffington Post, and use is subject to our terms. It may be used for personal consumption, but may not be distributed on a website. […]

Finland’s famous baby boxes are coming to Alberta

The province hopes to reinforce child and family wellbeing by providing basic supplies up front, as well as long term mentoring. […]