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April 1 - April 30, 2021
Timothy Larkins's avatar

Timothy Larkins

PCC SOC 228 - Environmental Sociology

Points Total

  • 0 Today
  • 0 This Week
  • 632 Total

Participant Impact

  • up to
    625
    minutes
    spent exercising
  • up to
    285
    minutes
    spent learning
  • up to
    240
    minutes
    spent outdoors

Timothy's Actions

Coastal, Ocean, and Engineered Sinks

Smart Seafood Choices

Ocean Farming

I will visit seafoodwatch.org or download the app and commit to making better seafood choices for a healthier ocean.

Completed
One-Time Action

Industry

Research Cement Alternatives

Alternative Cement

I will spend at least 40 minutes researching cement alternatives that reduce the carbon footprint of concrete.

Completed
One-Time Action

Transportation

Go for a Daily Walk

Walkable Cities

I will take a walk for 90 minutes each day and take note of the infrastructure that makes walking more or less enjoyable, accessible, and possible.

COMPLETED 5
DAILY ACTIONS

Action Track: Climate Resilience

Learn about 'Green Gentrification'

Multiple Solutions

I will spend at least 30 minutes learning about green gentrification and how it relates to city planning for climate action.

Completed
One-Time Action

Electricity

Learn More About Geothermal Energy

Geothermal Power

I will spend at least 30 minutes learning more about the energy generation potential of geothermal energy and consider investing in this technology.

Completed
One-Time Action

Electricity

Calculate My Carbon Footprint

All Drawdown Solutions

I will calculate the greenhouse gas emissions associated with my household and consider how different lifestyle choices could reduce my negative impact on the environment.

Completed
One-Time Action

Land Sinks

Explore My Area

Sometimes protecting nature requires feeling connected to nature. I will invest 120 minutes in exploring and appreciating a natural area in my region, whether a forest, wetland, coastal area, or somewhere else.

Completed
One-Time Action

Land Sinks

Learn More about Silvopasture

Silvopasture

I will spend at least 30 minutes watching videos and/or reading about the environmental benefits of silvopasture.

Completed
One-Time Action

Land Sinks

Forest-Friendly Foods 1

Tropical Forest Restoration

I will spend at least 30 minutes researching the impact of my diet to see how it contributes to deforestation.

Completed
One-Time Action

Coastal, Ocean, and Engineered Sinks

Learn about Biochar

Biochar Production

I will spend 30 minute(s) learning about biochar and how it can help sequester carbon.

Completed
One-Time Action

Feed

  • Reflection Question
    Industry Research Cement Alternatives
    Concrete is a good example of a material that most of us encounter every day, but its carbon footprint may not be obvious. What other everyday materials might have a large carbon footprint? How can you find out more?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/30/2021 3:15 PM
    Concrete has a notoriously large carbon emissions footprint and as such any alternatives that can have the durability and cheap material requirements for large scale operations would be a great boon for the environment. That being said, the two most notable ones that interested me were fly ash blocks that are composed of fly ash from burning coal and blocks made from jute or hemp. Both have similar press resistance as a concrete block would but also tend to have high temperature endurances which means they are less prone to cracking or splitting. However they do have some downsides, for one, they still need a binding agent which often times has to be a synthetic products which means it loses its not as environmentally friendly as could be, and secondly the jute or hemp blocks are more expensive then a traditional concrete block.
  • Reflection Question
    Coastal, Ocean, and Engineered Sinks Smart Seafood Choices
    Many states and countries have advisories on eating fish. Find out what is advised for your region. Do you think your diet choices fall within these guidelines? What steps do you need to take to make sure that they do?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/25/2021 8:55 PM
    Honestly I'm doing pretty good on the sustainable fishing standpoint, I take maybe two salmon a year when I go fishing and every other time I go fishing, I catch and release. I never buy seafood in stores, the only time I eat seafood is when I can personally buy tags and go out to catch them myself. Besides when catching and eating a fish from a river there are guidelines you have to follow, such as you can only keep fish that were born in a fishery, by following the regulations I ensure that future generations may have the joy of hours of hard working paying off.
  • Reflection Question
    Action Track: Climate Resilience Learn about 'Green Gentrification'
    Cities and towns need to plan for climate change. How can your city or town make its climate action plans equitable and socially just?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/23/2021 9:32 PM
    Well for starters switching to self sustainable power is a start, I believe most towns in the area around me are at least partially powered by renewable energy. The problem is how do you renovate a towns eco friendliness without having it jack up the price of the housing and living substantially, my argument would be some sort of government placed cap on housing and living costs because gentrification is a huge equity problem that seems unavoidable with huge leaps in eco-friendly techniques. 
  • Reflection Question
    Transportation Go for a Daily Walk
    What have you noticed on your daily walks? What have you enjoyed? What infrastructure changes could make your walks more enjoyable or possible?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/20/2021 9:28 AM
    Running was my main sport in high school and continues to be my main exercise past high school, so I ran 10 miles and called it good for this activity, I will say it is much more enjoyable due to the fact that I live in the country and as such I can run down country roads enjoying the view and wildlife flying around that being said, the roads could be much nicer because the amount of potholes on our roads is crazy when compared to our military budget.
  • Reflection Question
    Electricity Learn More About Geothermal Energy
    Geothermal energy is reliable, abundant, and efficient. Project Drawdown states that public investment will play a crucial role in its expansion. In what ways (i.e. with money, time, advocacy) can you invest in geothermal energy?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/16/2021 11:04 PM
    While yes geothermal energy is produced at only a sixth of the CO2 output, there are a host of problems in all three forms(dry steam, flash, and Binary), mainly they produce massive amounts of hydrogen sulphide and sulphur dioxide. Hydrogen sulphide has many of the same health effects in small doses as heavy exposure to CO2 emissions will cause, however it also has the added benefit of being lethal in much smaller doses. While yes it would dissipate into the atmosphere and breakdown, the people closest to the plants still may not like having the pollutant in the air while it takes the 18 hours to dissipate. Another problem with geothermal is that it is very location dependant, the wells have to be placed over subterranean vents that push up hot air and water from beneath the earth's crust, and as such the wells must be placed on tectonic plates where natural fissures allow the energy to seep into the crust. The cherry on top though, is that much like how fracking creates earthquakes due to the nature of disrupting the tectonic plates, so too does geothermal energy sourcing. To be completely straight, I don't see much a future in geothermal energy unless it is heavily worked on because beyond a niche application where it is super useful only in certain regions, there are too many downsides that may create more problems then they solve. I still think nuclear or a combination of wind and solar is the way too go(even if they have their own problems).

    • Kim Smith's avatar
      Kim Smith 4/17/2021 9:56 PM
      That is very interesting!  Thank you for bringing up those details and distinctions.
  • Reflection Question
    Land Sinks Learn More about Silvopasture
    Had you heard of the term "silvopasture" before now? After learning more about it, what do you think is the biggest advantage of silvopasture?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/14/2021 1:30 PM
    SilvoPasture is an interesting concept that has plenty of merit in the fact that by integrating forestry with livestock we would see sweeping benefits to the biosphere and an uptick in tree counts. However it is a flawed idea in my opinion because of the money and time it would cost many small time farmers who would have to renovate their fields. There's also the fact that certain types of forests would match certain types of animals better than others, example being that oak  is not as beneficial  for a cow or sheep as an apple orchard might be, due to the fruit versus nuts. Also keep in mind that silvo pastures would be done by small farmers, not large scale farming operations who make the most pollution. Especially since the large scale farms would have to spend millions on creating a biosphere when they could just stick the animals in large scale concrete building for housing, cruel but much cheaper. 
  • Reflection Question
    Land Sinks Learn More about Silvopasture
    Had you heard of the term "silvopasture" before now? After learning more about it, what do you think is the biggest advantage of silvopasture?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/14/2021 1:30 PM
    SilvoPasture is an interesting concept that has plenty of merit in the fact that by integrating forestry with livestock we would see sweeping benefits to the biosphere and an uptick in tree counts. However it is a flawed idea in my opinion because of the money and time it would cost many small time farmers who would have to renovate their fields. There's also the fact that certain types of forests would match certain types of animals better than others, example being that oak  is not as beneficial  for a cow or sheep as an apple orchard might be, due to the fruit versus nuts. Also keep in mind that silvo pastures would be done by small farmers, not large scale farming operations who make the most pollution. Especially since the large scale farms would have to spend millions on creating a biosphere when they could just stick the animals in large scale concrete building for housing, cruel but much cheaper. 
  • Reflection Question
    Electricity Calculate My Carbon Footprint
    What stood out to you most about your carbon footprint? What surprised you or sparked curiosity? Where can you take most immediate action?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/13/2021 9:51 AM
    A question about my carbon footprint was predominately already answered in last weeks questions about our impact on the ecosystem. As stated before my household is out in the country and as such depends on propane for heating and electricity from the grid for everything else. Solar panels aren't realistic because of the tree coverage which would prevent direct sun light for all but two hours of the day. If anyone has some ideas for better heating options that would  be great to look into, because propane isn't really cheap or energy efficient, but its the best we can do out here.
  • Reflection Question
    Land Sinks Forest-Friendly Foods 1
    How is your diet currently impacting deforestation? What can you do to decrease your negative impact and increase your positive impact?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/10/2021 2:37 PM
    It was interesting to read about how much of a effect the meat industry has on our planet. I definitely will be slimming down the amount of meat I eat from 5 days a week to 1 or 2, but it will be really hard because the alternatives for protein are foods I don't eat everyday. So any suggestions for recipes will be greatly appreciated. Also they say nuts are a great alternative, but I see reems of articles talking about how water inefficient grow nuts are, so I'm at a loss of what would be best. Here's to lab grown meats in the future.     

    • Sadie Carnes's avatar
      Sadie Carnes 4/12/2021 9:09 PM
      Hi Timothy, 
      I have heard the same thing about nuts, which is unfortunate because they are delicious! Some suggestions for plant based meals could include utilizing tofu! I grill tofu steaks quite a bit on the grill, or the other night I made a tofu and pineapple teriyaki stir fry. Tempeh is another great alternative! Rice and bean bowls loaded with veggies are delicious. I just made a lentil meatloaf with a side of cauliflower garlic mashed potatoes the other day. It was quite tasty :) I would be happy to share those recipes if you are interested. Good luck with your meatless meals :) 
  • Reflection Question
    Coastal, Ocean, and Engineered Sinks Learn about Biochar
    Can biochar provide additional benefits besides sequestering carbon?

    Timothy Larkins's avatar
    Timothy Larkins 4/08/2021 8:41 PM
    Man all I got to say is why is this not being funded. Biochar seems like such a clean simple way to lower atmospheric CO2 levels that we have known about for more than a thousand years, and it replenishes nutrients into the soil. The biggest drawbacks that I could find in my research was the fact that the biochar tends to absorb pesticides and heavy metals that can poison the soil the biochar is put in. However, could further research and development not lead to improvements in order to get rid of the drawbacks?