Border Wall Destruction Continues Despite Biden Executive Order
Continued Activity Threatens Jaguar Survival In the U.S.
It seems that, despite president Biden’s executive order to cease building the wall at the southern border, heavy equipment has been seen in southern Arizona destroying habitat,, habitat critical for the continued survival of the jaguar in the United States.
As of the 10th of this month, three weeks after the inauguration and the signing of the executive order, bulldozers and backhoes were still busy at work churning through the desert landscape.
The range of the jaguar extends through a great deal of South America, through Central America, Mexico, and into the Southwest United States. The Jaguar has been almost completely eliminated from the U.S., with only a few individuals that might be counted in Arizona; so any disruption or destruction of habitat may completely extirpate the species from the U.S. The border wall is being built along a 74-mile stretch of land that bisects remote and mountainous terrain that jaguars use to travel between the U.S. and Mexico.
Apparently, someone associated with the Tucson Samaritans, a humanitarian organization that tries to reduce the death of migrants crossing the border in Arizona, has filmed* the destruction. Laiken Jordahl, a campaigner at the Center For Biological Diversity had this to say about the continued border wall activity:
These alarming videos seem to show construction crews destroying every acre of pristine wildlands they can lay their hands on, in what appears to be blatant disregard of Biden’s order halting construction. The Biden administration should investigate this immediately and stop any construction that’s still occurring. Pausing work on the wall isn’t enough. The new administration must cancel these contracts for good and work with border communities and tribal nations to repair all that Trump destroyed.
Full grown, Jaguars stand about two and a half feet tall and can have a body length close to six feet in length, making them the largest cat in the New World. They need large habitats for survival. Their numbers have decreased, and the International Union For Conservation of Nature lists the jaguar’s status as Near Threatened. Hunting, habitat loss, and habitat fragmentation further threaten the survival of these beautiful cats.
*Though the Samaritans claimed to have filmed the habitat destruction, I was unable to find the video.
Bitcoin Uses More Electricity Than Argentina
I guess it’s fitting that trying to make money off of Bitcoin is called mining, as the practice looks to be pretty taxing on the environment. According to the BBC, researchers at Cambridge University estimate that the trading of the cryptocurrency consumes around 121.36 terawatt-hours (TWh) a year, more electricity than that consumed by all of Argentina. If Bitcoin were its own country, it would rank in the top 30 energy uses in the world. The only chance of Bitcoin losing this ranking is if its value decreases. Today one Bitcoin is equivalent to $4787.56 US.
Congress Wants You To Have an Ebike
Sponsored by Democrats Jimmy Panetta of California and Earl Blumenauer of Oregon, the Electric Bicycle Incentive Kickstart for the Environment or EBIKE Act, would give tax credits of up to 30 percent of the purchase of bikes that cost less than $8,000. The thinking, I guess, is that once folks buy themselves an ebike, they will use it to not only hop around their neighborhoods but to ride them to work or run errands, lowering carbon and environmental footprints.
The E-BIKE Act is led by Jimmy Panetta (D-CA) and Earl Blumenauer (D-OR) and echoes the tax incentives already in place for electric car purchases