How to address climate change deniers

Responding to climate change deniers can be tedious. It’s tough to know how to deal with people who form an opinion based on news sites and social media and value their own conclusions over those of the  overwhelming majority of actual subject matter experts. Despite overwhelming amount of confirming evidence in the science community, we’ve seen a corresponding increase in skepticism over the validity of this independent peer reviewed body of work confirming the basic climate change findings. This excerpt from a letter from Governor Jerry Brown to Dr. Ben Carson on September 10, 2015 is one way to respond:

“Please find enclosed a flash drive with the complete United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) ‘Synthesis Report,’ the concluding installment of the Fifth Assessment Report, published earlier this year. This report assessed over 30,000 scientific papers and was written by more than 800 authors representing 80 countries around the world who definitively concluded that “human influence on the climate system is clear and growing with impacts observed across all continents and oceans.”

This is just one of the thousands of reports authored by the world’s top scientists on the subject, including a study published last month by Columbia University, University of Idaho and NASA Goddard Institute for Space Studies scientists that found climate change has intensified California’s drought, These aren’t just words. The consequences are real.

Please use your considerable intelligence to review this material. Climate change is much bigger than partisan politics.”

It occurs to me that there are plenty of others in the category we label as “deniers” who would benefit from becoming familiar with this massive body of research.

Good News on Money Island and Bay Water Quality

The Delaware River Basin Commission collects water samples periodically and publishes data about bacteria levels in the Delaware Bay. Four of the collection points are south of our location at Money Island NJ and are therefore could be affected by discharge from the bayshore communities in this local region. The primary factor of concern, especially in summer, is the level of e. coli bacteria, also known as fecal coliform. The data published on the State of New Jersey’s web site indicated that levels of fecal coliform have been minimal or not detected at all collection points in the Delaware bay south of us at Money Island.

This data is especially important because an improperly designed water quality test conducted in the summer of 2014 was misconstrued to imply that broken septic systems were contributing to fecal coliform levels in the Nantuxent Cove and in the bay around Money Island. Some environmentalists in the American Littoral Society and the Cumberland County Department of Health apparently misinterpreted last year’s report to mean that higher levels of reported bacteria were coming from human source discharge.  The test has since been discredited and its authors have disclaimed some of the methodology. All other tests prior to and after this have indicated a healthy level of fecal coliform in our waters.  The last comprehensive report on our water quality was published in 2012. (Since the date of this original post, a 2016 report was published. This report , page 43, confirms positive findings for the Delaware Bay region’s fecal coliform tests).

In general, the mid and lower bay region has lower levels of bacteria than water bodies further north.

The test result data is summarized in this table. For complete information, see the test results for each individual month.

Fecal Coliform Summary Data

Collection Points:
Mahon River Crossledge Joe Flogger Brown’s Shoal
June 2015 Not detected Not detected Not detected 1
July 2015 Not detected Not detected Not detected Not detected
August 2015 Not detected 1 Not detected Not detected
September 2015 7 Not detected Not detected Not detected

A fecal coliform level of 200 is considered to be the maximum safe standard for this test.

Blue claw crab facts

compiled by Tony Novak, originally published February 24, 2015

Much of the blue claw crab life cycle research commonly cited about blue claw crabs was conducted in the 1940s and 1950s in the Chesapeake Bay region. There is some published contradicting information. Few studies have followed the changes occurring, if any, on crab life cycle variance over time. This list is meant as a compilation of generally accepted published data.

Female crabs typically mate once in their lifetime.

Sexual maturity is reached 1 to 1 1/2 years after post-larval molts.

After mating, the crabs survive the winter by burrowing into the mud before spawning (laying eggs).

Burrowing occurs in deeper, warmer waters near the mouth of the bay.

Spawning occurs 2 months to 9 months after mating.

Each female produces millions of fertilized eggs.

Crabs spawn in higher salinity waters near the ocean.

Juvenile crabs migrate into shallower, less-saline waters farther up the bay.

Male crabs may remain in lower salinity water farther up the bay waters to feed.

Male crab movements are not directional but may depend more on currents and tidal flow.

Most larval, infantile and juvenile crabs are consumed as food by other species.

Crab larvae feed mostly on plankton.

Juvenile crabs feed on invertebrates in the benthos zone (worms, shrimp living in the mud) as well as some plant material.

Adult crabs prefer to eat clams and oysters and have the ability to find buried clams and open their shells. Cannibalized molting crabs are a significant portion of their diet.

Crabs molt up to 20 times in their life span.

Molting is energy dependent and does not occur in winter.

Refrigerating a molting crab stops its shell from hardening (for human consumption of soft shell crabs).

Molting happens more frequently in small crabs and less frequently in larger crabs.

The maximum age for most blue crabs in the mid-Atlantic region is three years.

Adults crabs live an average of less than one year after reaching maturity.

Maximum size is about 9 inches from point to point.

In the fall when temperatures drop below 50°F adult crabs leave shallow, inshore waters and seek deeper areas where they borrow into the bottom and throughout the winter.

Temperature above 93 degrees is lethal.

Tolerance range is pH 6-8 and less than 6 is lethal.

Salinity requirement varies with life cycle.

The State of New Jersey issues this safety advisory for crabs caught in the Newark Bay.

New Jersey’s Professor Paul Jivoff in the biology department at Rider University is a leading authority on blue claw crabs.

New Baysave web site coming

On 10/19/2018 the legacy Baysave.org web site was republished on this updated content management platform. Eventually all of the published information from the middle 1990’s forward about Baysave and its predecessor projects will be published here. Please allow us a few days to get caught up with moving content to this new platform.