For those of us “at a certain age,” some things to consider.  Lee Schafer’s article in the STrib brought up a few articles about where Minnesota fits into the mix, and that the usual suspects of states to go to for retirement (often AZ for those of us west of the Mississippi, and FL for those on the East Coast) may not be so hot.  Cost of living in AZ sure is high and the climate sure sucks!

America’s Health Rankings – 2018 Senior Report

But what about Minnesota?  The United Health Foundation’s study put Minnesota pretty high, #4, but last year we were #1.  Click for larger version:

The considerations, above, are ones that make sense to me.  For instance, looking at rates of volunteerism of those 65 and over, isolation and sense of community:

… looking at rates of “excessive drinking” for those over 65 — hey, MN, we were #48 on the list, tied with Hawaii, and above only Wisconsin!  WHOA, folks, consider that! Click for larger version:

And the one that I need to deal with (much easier with mostly resolved plantar fascitis) — I can be a woman of substance in other ways, eh?

And Delivery of Home Meals (Meals on Wheels?!?):

Here’s Schafer’s column today in the STrib — you can check out the other linked studies here:

The best spot to retire might not be the warmest

I remember when…

January 29th, 2019

Oh come on, folks, it’s not that cold. -7 right now in Red Wing. At the risk of sounding like an old fart, I remember when… I remember in the 60s those -30 mornings penguin-walking a mile to school in Michelin Man costume.

And I’d rather forget those awful mornings in the 70s, so glad to have that long muskrat coat, I appreciated each and every dead muskrat.  And 1974 for sure was awful, living in an unheated attic, and trying, and failing, to start the car, a personal emergency.  Piglet, my ’64 Galaxie just couldn’t do it.

Early 80s, changing the oil in my van because I’d flooded it beyond hope. What hell that was…

And in 1994, when my new Dodge Colt froze up!  How did that happen?  Caught it overheating as it was warming up, and lucky to get it to the shop and thawed out. WHEW, too close.

But as you well know, climate has changed. I kept telling Alan Muller that winters are not “normal” here, little snow, and not -30 or worse. Now and then, we do get reminders (click photos for larger versions).

Roger Stone Arrested

January 25th, 2019

What delightful news to wake up to — Roger Stone indicted and arrested!

REAL NEWS – PRIMARY DOCUMENT ALERT:

Roger Stone_Indictment_012419

 

 

What happens to coal ash?  It’s shoveled out, brought to a “ash disposal facility” where it goes into the ground, and from there???  We’re finally learning that it often leaches into the ground, down into the groundwater. Thanks to EarthJustice for posting the raw data — no plants listed for Minnesota:

Scroll down for their newer reports.

It’s not news, though, and has been the subject of research for a long time, this study from 1980:

Effects of Coal-Ash Leachate on Ground Water Quality

What did they look for and find?

So yeah, this is something to be concerned about…

There are coal ash and other ash “disposal facilities” everywhere, usually very close to where the ash is generated, here in Red Wing we have an ash dump, ash from two old coal burners at the NSP/Xcel garbage burners on the south end of town, and a now closed city garbage burner, visible on the map above, at the lower right corner of the black striped “Water Tank Mound Area” and beyond, that complex there.  The City garbage burner was closed not long ago (YEAAAAA!!!), but the NSP/Xcel former coal burners, now garbage burner, remain burning.

(The Air Permits for those 2 burners have been expired for a decade or more, but that’s another story, covered before and to be covered again, but not today.)

The coal ash and garbage ash has been piling up for decades.  A couple of years ago there was a city and Xcel scam launched here in Red Wing, “ash mining.”

Alan Muller on Red Wing’s garbage ash “mining”

April 30th, 2016

MPCA’s THREE Red Wing Ash releases today

December 5th, 2016

Lab USA Ash Mining – PCA says “No EIS needed”

April 7th, 2017

Having some experience with ash issues, there’s been recent reports about utility disclosures of ash contamination:

EarthJustice – Coal Ash: Reports & Publications (Texas, Georgia, West Virginia)

Where are details for Minnesota?

MGE & WPSC shot down!

January 9th, 2019

This has been one of the longest weeks, if I were a driver, I’d be out of hours after tossing my 2nd log book in the bunk!  But hey, that’s why they call it work.  This Order helped make it all worthwhile.

Order –  Denying MGE-WPSC Motion to Protect

MGE and WPSC have been working so hard to keep Jewell Jinkins Intervenors out of this docket, and we end up spending all our time on challenging the onslaught.  Today’s Order follows the PSC denial of their Motion to have us tossed out:

WPSC_MGE Motion for Interlocutory Review_354992

Which followed their previous Objection to our Intervention, which was also tossed out:

Applicant Response to Motion to Intervene

Order_Intervention

At long last, this… ONCE MORE WITH FEELING:

Order –  Denying MGE-WPSC Motion to Protect

It’s hard to pick my favorite part, this is for sure in the Top 10 of all time.  How’s this for a snippet?

Onward.  Today after this Order, I received their Confidentiality Agreements, signed them and shipped to the utilities, and then the Discovery started coming in.  Lots and lots and lots and lots and lots.  Rebuttal is due tomorrow.  Right…