IDEMA: Why have a lawn?

Nov 7, 2012

Perhaps we should look at climate change as Pascal (a French philosopher, physicist and mathematician, 1623-62) did in terms of the existence of God. His famous wager put forth the proposition that, if you believe in God, you have nothing to lose and much to gain; but if you place your bet on the nonexistence of God, there could be a horrible price to be paid.

Same with climate change, it seems to me. We gain more by believing in it, and doing something about it, than betting that it is a left-wing ideology and that there are no consequences for all the pollution we create.

Climate change has been barely discussed in the election cycle that mercifully will have ended by the time you read this (Or will we have recounts that prolong the agony?). So, let's discuss climate change here.

In all the years I have been reading articles on religion or letters to the editor in our West Michigan newspapers, rarely do I see someone who argues that the church should take active measures to do something about climate change. Would that be too controversial for a preacher or parish newsletter?

But, you might ask, what can we do as individuals or as a church to combat something as global as climate change? There are many things, of course. Energy-saving light bulbs; energy-efficient cars; monitoring the amount of electricity we use; taking advantage of Consumers Energy's program of signing up for "green" energy for our homes, churches and businesses instead of coal energy (that costs me an additional $16 a month for my home — but well worth it, I believe).

Here is another idea that probably you have not thought of: getting rid of your lawn. Let it be natural. Perhaps planting some indigenous plants is a nice addition to natural ground cover.

Green lawns are a European import, which are not natural to Michigan. We have to water them all the time in summer, which wastes a precious resource. The fertilizers are often bad for the environment. We get neurotic about the moles, which ruin the look of a green lawn. The heat of summer then turns the green grass to brown.

Moreover, in the fall, you think you have to rake up all of those beautiful leaves only to expose the dull lawns of fall. I would rather have wood chips, fallen leaves, ground cover, and some color with flowers and plants you don't have to mow, rake or water all that much.

Moreover, lawnmowers create noise pollution, along with all that smoke belching out into the heavens.

Getting rid of lawns for vegetation and plants natural to Michigan won't solve the problem of climate change, but it will save you from a losing battle against it as you try to keep that British and French import — green grass — looking green.

What is wrong with appreciating the beautiful dandelions in the spring? Or the piles of red, yellow and brown leaves that pile up on our lawns in our gorgeous autumns?

You can also do away with church lawns, as far as I am concerned. Think of how much money that would save in parish budgets!

I have a lawnmower for sale, if you need one. I will never need it again!

— By the Rev. Henry Idema, Tribune religion columnist
 

Comments

Vladtheimp

08:30 PM
Vladtheimp says two can play the same game -Funding for just two of your global warming illuminati: Michael Mann's Grant Funding Penn State ^ | 12-02-2009 | Michael Mann Posted on Wednesday, December 02, 2009 6:34:28 PM by HarleyD Funded Proposals 2009-2013 Quantifying the influence of environmental temperature on transmission of vector-borne diseases, NSF-EF [Principal Investigator: M. Thomas; Co-Investigators: R.G. Crane, M.E. Mann, A. Read, T. Scott (Penn State Univ.)] $1,884,991 2009-2012 Toward Improved Projections of the Climate Response to Anthropogenic Forcing: Combining Paleoclimate Proxy and Instrumental Observations with an Earth System Model, NSF-ATM [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann; Co-Investigators: K. Keller (Penn State Univ.), A. Timmermann (Univ. of Hawaii)] $541,184 2008-2011 A Framework for Probabilistic Projections of Energy-Relevant Streamflow Indices, DOE [Principal Investigator: T. Wagener; Co-Investigators: M. Mann, R. Crane, K. Freeman (Penn State Univ.)] $330,000 2008-2009 AMS Industry/Government Graduate Fellowship (Anthony Sabbatelli), American Meteorological Society [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann (Penn State Univ.)] $23,000 2006-2009 Climate Change Collective Learning and Observatory Network in Ghana, USAID [Principal Investigator: P. Tschakert; Co-Investigators: M.E. Mann, W. Easterling (Penn State Univ.)] $759,928 2006-2009 Analysis and testing of proxy-based climate reconstructions, NSF-ATM [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann (Penn State Univ.)] $459,000 2006-2009 Constraining the Tropical Pacific’s Role in Low-Frequency Climate Change of the Last Millennium, NOAA-Climate Change Data & Detection (CCDD) Program [Principal Investigators: K. Cobb (Georgia Tech Univ.), N. Graham (Hydro. Res. Center), M.E. Mann (Penn State Univ.), Hoerling (NOAA Clim. Dyn. Center), Alexander (NOAA Clim. Dyn. Center)] PSU award (M.E. Mann): $68,065 2006-2007 Acquisition of high-performance computing cluster for the Penn State Earth System Science Center (ESSC), NSF-EAR [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann, Co-Investigators: R. Alley, M. Arthur, J. Evans, D. Pollard (Penn State Univ.)] $100,000 2003-2006 Decadal Variability in the Tropical Indo-Pacific: Integrating Paleo & Coupled Model Results, NOAA-Climate Change Data & Detection (CCDD) Program [Principal Investigators: M.E. Mann (U.Va), J. Cole (U. Arizona), V. Mehta (CRCES)] U.Va award (M.E. Mann): $102,000 2002-2005 Reconstruction and Analysis of Patterns of Climate Variability Over the Last One to Two Millennia, NOAA-Climate Change Data & Detection (CCDD) Program [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann, Co-Investigators: S. Rutherford, R.S. Bradley, M.K. Hughes] $315,000 2002-2005 Remote Observations of Ice Sheet Surface Temperature: Toward Multi-Proxy Reconstruction of Antarctic Climate Variability, NSF-Office of Polar Programs, Antarctic Oceans and Climate System [Principal Investigators: M.E. Mann (U. Va), E. Steig (U. Wash.), D. Weinbrenner (U. Wash)] U.Va award (M.E. Mann): $133,000 2002-2003 Paleoclimatic Reconstructions of the Arctic Oscillation, NOAA-Cooperative Institute for Arctic Research (CIFAR) Program [Principal Investigators: Rosanne D'Arrigo, Ed Cook (Lamont/Columbia); Co-Investigator: M.E. Mann] U.Va subcontract (M.E. Mann): $14,400 2002-2003 Global Multidecadal-to-Century-Scale Oscillations During the Last 1000 years, NOAA-Climate Change Data & Detection (CCDD) Program [Principal Investigator: Malcolm Hughes (Univ. of Arizona); Co-Investigators: M.E. Mann; J. Park (Yale University)] U.Va subcontract (M.E. Mann): $20,775 2001-2003 Resolving the Scale-wise Sensitivities in the Dynamical Coupling Between Climate and the Biosphere, University of Virginia-Fund for Excellence in Science and Technology (FEST) [Principal Investigator: J.D. Albertson; Co-Investigators: H. Epstein, M.E. Mann] U.Va internal award: $214,700 2001-2002 Advancing predictive models of marine sediment transport, Office of Naval Research [Principal Investigator: P. Wiberg (U.Va), Co-Investigator: M.E. Mann] $20,775 1999-2002 Multiproxy Climate Reconstruction: Extension in Space and Time, and Model/Data Intercomparison, NOAA-Earth Systems History [Principal Investigator: M.E. Mann (U.Va), Co-Investigators: R.S. Bradley, M.K. Hughes] $381,647 1998-2000 Validation of Decadal-to-Multi-century climate predictions, DOE [Principal Investigator: R.S. Bradley (U. Mass); Co-Investigators: H.F. Diaz, M.E. Mann] 1998-2000 The changing seasons? Detecting and understanding climatic change, NSF-Hydrological Science [Principal Investigator U. Lall (U. Utah); Co-investigators: M.E. Mann, B. Rajagopalan, M. Cane] $266,235K 1996-1999 Patterns of Organized Climatic Variability: Spatio-Temporal Analysis of Globally Distributed Climate Proxy Records and Long-term Model Integrations, NSF-Earth Systems History [Principal Investigator: R.S. Bradley (U. Mass); Co-Investigators: M.E. Mann, M.K. Hughes] $270,000 1996-1998 Investigation of Patterns of Organized Large-Scale Climatic Variability During the Last Millennium, DOE, Alexander Hollaender Postdoctoral Fellowship [M.E. Mann] $78,000 NASA records released to resolve litigation filed by the American Tradition Institute reveal that Dr. James E. Hansen, an astronomer, received approximately $1.6 million in outside, direct cash income in the past five years for work related to — and, according to his benefactors, often expressly for — his public service as a global warming activist within NASA. This does not include six-figure income over that period in travel expenses to fly around the world to receive money from outside interests. As specifically detailed below, Hansen failed to report tens of thousands of dollars in global travel provided to him by outside parties — including to London, Paris, Rome, Oslo, Tokyo, the Austrian Alps, Bilbao, California, Australia and elsewhere, often business or first-class and also often paying for his wife as well — to receive honoraria to speak about the topic of his taxpayer-funded employment, or get cash awards for his activism and even for his past testimony and other work for NASA.

Tri-cities realist

Scroll a bit farther

GH55

Search on the Northwest Ottawa County Water Treatment and learn where you are wrong. In the summer almost half the capacity of the water treatment system is used to water lawns! That is purified drinking water being sprayed on the ground. So, the size of the facility that we had to support with taxes and rates for each gallon of water goes on lawns! If that is not a waste of purified water I don't know what is.
If I choose not to have a lawn but use natural native plants and I have a right to do as I please just as you say my neighbor does, why is that any different? Why would that have any affect on any property value?
Also, as has been demonstrated many times, you can show any trend you want if you pick a small enough sample of data.
Just because there is mercury in the bulbs I choose to use, because they use less than a quarter of the electricity, doesn't mean it is going to end up in our environment or the landfill. I take them to the recycle facility, I don't pitch them in the trash. That advice is also on the label.
Further more, I have never been in the ditch, as you say in my car! The only ones I see in the ditch are the behemoth SUV and pickup trucks. So, don't worry, you won't have to show any consideration or compassion for me as you drive by. Thank you!
Noise from lawn mowers, leaf blowers, edgers and Harleys is most certainly pollution!

Vladtheimp

I applaud you for the responsible manner in which you live your life and contribute to the community, but why stop at lawn mowers, leaf blowers, edgers, and Harleys? I find that garbage trucks intrude upon my contemplative life as well as buses, planes, trains, and automobiles, not to mention motor boats on the big lake and that annoying fire siren at noon on Fridays. Particularly egregious is the huge noise created by generators when there are power outages, especially the big ones at hospitals and nursing homes. Since you appear to be particularly sensitive to the problem of noise pollution, may I suggest that you develop a standard for reasonable decibel levels and lobby the Tri-Cities area to adopt them in legislation? Again, I appreciate the minimalist approach you have and the small size of your footprint in the community.

snlfan

Imp... I don't think you get the point of a public forum... here GH55 is expressing thier opnion not asking for regulation. Your ability to slide of topic is epic, how in the hell did we get from watering lawns with treated water is wasteful, in GH55's opinion, to shutting down generators during emergency power outages at hospitals... ? Say What?

Wingmaster

I think he is using the absurd to point out the absurd.

Vladtheimp

Holy Jumpin Jehosephat - didn't you note that GH55 got from lawns to Harley Davidsons being pollution? Get a grip!

snlfan

Harley Davisons (with modified exhaust systems) are noise pollution and we all ready have laws about that somehow the police take a blind eye, but, will enforce if you have your music loud, both annoying and in breach but, selectively enforced. My thought on that is that GH being tourist destination we don't want to turn down that business, and HD guys spend big buck on bikes and generally have some to spare in the bars. Besides Harley are slow, poor handleing, and bad piece of engineering work... I have ridden them, and much perfer almost aything else to having to ride a couch the "looks cool" an adhorn a black and orange overpirced unifirom to be cool... non-sence.

Vladtheimp

Sometimes it's just useless. . . .

snlfan

Thanks for acknowledging my logical win over you spatter of junk thought.

Vladtheimp

You're welcome, I'm sure. I suspect that you meant to place an "r" after "you" and that you meant to place "thought" in the plural, since I expressed more than one thought and "spatter" generally denotes the plural. Without these changes, your comment makes no sense and makes you look illiterate, which would be unfortunate. Just tryin to be helpful, SNL.

Tri-cities realist

Ignorance is bliss, and I am definitely NOT writing about Vlad.

Tri-cities realist

Keep scrolling

Tri-cities realist

It is called "illustrating absurdity by being absurd". Some of us understand the concept of a slippery slope, where the intrusion of another's rights has no limit. I'm sad that I actually had to spell it out, but you're welcome.

Tri-cities realist

Oops I just noticed as I scrolled down, that Wing already said it, gotta give credit where it is due.

Tri-cities realist

Keep scrolling down for a list of global warming skeptics

dyankee

GH55, the problem with you, Henry, Snlfan, 43-N, and alike that gets under all of our skin-kevlar-camo-tatoos-leather and SUV's is that you're just mad as hell that someone else is quietly enjoying their life ANNNNND can easily afford to do so. Its not about the use of friggin' purified water to make our lawns, lanscaping, and homes look nice, its about your hatred for everyone around you that is excercising their God given rights as Americans to pursue their happiness. You have been water boarded into thinking that because Vlad, Wing, TCR, Boater, me and others can afford a Harley, underground sprinkling, boats, riding lawn mowers, SUV's, etc...then, we certainly must of taken something away from someone else to do it.(class envy) You cannot fathom the concept of hardwork, saving, and sacrifice as a rehlm of possibility as to how we did it. More importantly, you've been indoctrinated to believe that mankind is toxic to Mother Earth and you subscribe to a Nazi style manifesto to attack, smear, and character assasinate anyone that disagrees with the demented idiology of global warming. Even in the face of overwhelming evidence to the contrary, your loyalty to the movement orders you to this post to spew your nonsense, falsehoods, and blatant lies in an effort to stop anyone's aspirations to better themselves and their families lives through their certain unalienable rights afforded to every American including Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness. You are so drunk with such vile seathing U.N. style hatred for all Patriot Americans, that you have washed from your memory as to what it means and takes to actually be one.

snlfan

Dyanke you show how your the right sterotypes of those who are compasnionate for others and the planet must be those that suck off society, abslolutly incorrect again. I do own a giant SUV, boats, snowmobiles, motorcycles, second home up north, a small car for commuting to GR work (looking to go electric soon), kid has a nice car, vacation to ski the rockies in the winter, fly to visit relatives, have 30+ holiday/vacation days to enjoy per year. Yup, you can say I'm hypicrital, but, I like to think of using fossel fuels this way.. use as little as possiable in your daily life and leave some to spare to ride a toy with on the weekend some. So as far as upper middle to upper class yes I am in it, just about at the maximum tax rate. You don't have to be a wasteful polluting jerk to persue the American Dream, there is no need too you just prove that your a stupid jerk. You equate the American Dream and financial wealth with being a polluting/selfish/blame the poor for being poor/church going to make up for it/ AA%%*9h.

Wingmaster

Well snlfan, your post is about to get scrubbed I'm sure by the eye in the sky. Glad I was able to read your seething rage before it happened.(calling someone a stupid jerk) In fact, I copied your post if anyone would like a repost of it, say when! Your a hypocrite and it is exposed and you are lashing out.

snlfan

How do you figure I'm a hypocrite? I put maybe 1000 miles a year on my SUV (snowy days and when the kids bring friends)... and the res of the time commuting/shopping/running around in my 30 mpg noisy rattlebox fuel efficient daily work vehicle. I could afford to take the big car, but I don't, I'd rather use the small one. Even use rideshare website to find other commuters and save gas that way too...

Vladtheimp

Your carbon footprint is bigger than mine, friend!

snlfan

You work?

Vladtheimp

Since you ask a personal question so nicely, I'll refrain from answering. My comment was based on the fact that I have never had " boats, snowmobiles, motorcycles, second home up north", nor have I skied the Rockies. If I fly once a year that's a lot. Had nothing to do with your commute.

Wingmaster

Hey look above everyone, the Tribune is letting snlfan make defamatory statements without scrubbing. Huh?

Wingmaster

Bravo dyankee brother. Watch out now as they are going to tear apart your grammar or spelling.

snlfan

Please present evidence to the contrary of Global Warming is not real and influenced by the behaviours of mankind? Site your source please.

Tri-cities realist

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Vladtheimp

Thanks - your comment motivated me to remove the remaining leaves from my lawn, using my Simplicity lawn tractor (made in the great state of Wisconsin) and my Little Wonder blower (made in the great Commonwealth of Pennsylvania). Unfortunately I was low on carbon fuel and had to drive my Escalade (made in the great state of Texas) to get more gasoline. I love the smell of exhaust in the morning!

Tri-cities realist

Little wonder blower... That made me think of someone else, but I digress. Good post though

Lanivan

Watch it - keep it clean. Obama-bashing is encouraged, but no naughtiness.

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