Wednesday, February 29, 2012

Day 3 by Adalaya

Today we went to the John E Amos Power Plant. We watched a cheesy video about the plant, and how “good” it is for the environment. After the video we got a tour. First we went in one of smoke stacks and learned about how it was made.

Next we went to see the big pile of coal – 60 days worth.

Then we saw the water cooling towers. The shape of tower makes a very good wind tunnel and the wind cools the water so that it can be recycled.

Last but not least we went to the power generation building. On the first floor are the pulverizers, which are the machines that crush the coal. On the 6th floor were the turbines that the steam spins to create electricity. The 18th floor was really hot because that is where the furnaces are.

After the tour Anna asked our guide what he thought about mountain top removal. He said he did not like the look of them but once they were “reclaimed” but he thought they made great golf courses, basically saying that he thought a flat grassy area is better than the second most diverse area in the world, after the Amazon. Tonight we are staying at Anna house.

Day 2 by Paul

On day two we went and hung out with Coal River Mountain Watch. We had a very depressing conversation about how the coal sludge affects the community. Then we went to Kayford Mountain. The mountain used to be pretty small until Massey Coal Company came and destroyed the mountains around it. Now it stands being the biggest mountain around. Then we drove to a pretty nice school but the coal company came and built a processing plant 30 feet away from the school. That’s not all. They also had to put a coal sludge dam there too. So when the kids come out to play they have to breath in toxic air that can kill them. Then we came back to the volunteer house and played games and had a blast. To finish our trip to West Virginia we had a bon fire and sang songs. (Pictures to come soon)

Day 1 by Paolo

First we got in the bus and drove and drove and drove and drove until we got to a road which we thought was the right road and we drove way up it for a long time and we decided to turn around and we drove back. Finally after a stop at a pay-phone and a popped tire we managed to find the house that we are staying at so we unloaded the van and took a hike. When we got back we made dinner.

Friday, February 10, 2012

Trip Itinerary!

We're all getting very excited about our upcoming trip. We plan on visiting a wide variety of places to help round out our understanding of how energy (both through food and electricity) is created here in the Eastern US. We will visit CAFOs (concentrated animal feeding operations), a humane slaughter house, industrial farms, urban community gardens, production based organic farms, mountain top removal sites, a coal-fired power plant, an ethanol plant, passive solar buildings, hydro-electric and wind powered systems. We will also have some down time to just have fun and enjoy each others' company. Here is our rough itinerary:
Monday 2/27: Drive to Beckley, WV
Tuesday 2/28: Meet with Coal River Mountain Watch and visit with Larry Gibson. Stay overnight in Charleston, WV
Wednesday 2/29: Visit coal-fired power plant, drive to Anna Zakelj's house in Modoc, IN
Thursday 3/1: Visit CAFOs
Friday 3/2: Visit Johno Zakelj's school to see a wind turbine, visit Ethanol plant
Saturday 3/3: Drive to Berea, KY. Participate in Leaf for Life with Quaker youth
Sunday 3/4: Visit Friend's Meeting in Berea. Drive to Louisville, KY, to stay with Sharon Ash
Monday 3/5: Visit coffee house that shares compost with community gardens, visit passive solar buildings. Maybe go to Berry Center to learn about Wendell Berry's role in preserving sustainable agriculture
Tuesday 3/6: Visit Food Literacy Project and Grasshoppers distributing center. Drive to Nashville, TN
Wednesday 3/7: Drive to Kolomoki Mounds State Park, GA to camp
Thursday 3/8: Visit White Oak Pastures, who provides humanely slaughtered beef to Whole Foods Markets in the southeast
Friday 3/9: Drive to Savannah, GA, and stay with Anna Raymer's aunt and uncle
Saturday 3/10: Fun day at Tybee Island!
Sunday 3/11: Drive to Efland, NC, and stay with Ann Shy
Monday 3/12: Visit Fickle Creek Farms, a sustainable organic production farm
Tuesday 3/13: Drive to Tom and Sandy Colleti's in Union Grove, NC, where we will stay in an Amish community
Wednesday 3/14: Drive to Coweeta Heritage Center outside of Franklin, NC
Thursday 3/15: Back to AMS!