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July 27, 2009

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Yeah, but a new restaurant opened near downtown so you're obviously bitter.

Seriously, there's no cure for denial except an unassailable fact staring you in the face. We won't learn because there's nothing more seductive than ignorance masquerading as optimism. Plus, scientists are notoriously liberal. That's why Global Warming is a crock.

The central nervous system of Phoenix is like that of a jellyfish. In other words, there isn't one. We don't even know we're stranded. Rain, cooler weather, and appreciating housing values are lurking down the highway. Just like a mirage .

I agree with everything you said in this article except for one thing. Palo Verde NGS is the largest nuke in the US, not North America. The good folks of Ontario Canada can lay claim to that title.

I wonder if you have read the recently published "Dead Pool" by James Powell and its 80's predecessor "Cadillac Desert" by Marc Reisner. They both explore the water issues in the West, the newer book having a large intersection with climate change.

Quote from "Dead Pool" describing an "unthinkable" scenario, some of it not so unthinkable now (found on http://aquadoc.typepad.com/waterwired/2009/01/is-dead-pool-dead-on.html ):
With both surface [water] and groundwater supplies severely limited and no relief in sight, Phoenix declares a stage-four water emergency, its highest level. The state legislature rescinds the Groundwater Management Act. Voluntary reductions having long since failed to conserve enough water, Phoenix enforces rationing. Watering lawns, washing cars, and splashing in water parks are distant memories. The two hundred golf courses in Phoenix and Scottsdale have been closed for years, their verdant fairways and manicured greens blown away on the hot dry wind. Valves attached to water meters automatically shut off the flow when consumption exceeds the limit. Armed water police with the authority to shut off valves and make arrests patrol neighborhoods. Phoenix doubles the price of water to residences, raises it even more for the heaviest water users, and prohibits new water hook-ups. Home construction shuts down and the once-booming central Arizona real estate market collapses. As tax revenues decline, Phoenix runs short of funds and rating agencies reclassify its bonds as junk.

Following Nevada's example, Phoenix begins to build a desalting plant on the Sea of Cortés. But as the border crisis intensifies, and with its own water supplies at dangerous lows, Mexico nationalizes all American-owned factories in the country, including the desalting plants and the maquiladoras. By the 2020s, with water, the stuff of life at stake, it is every nation for itself.

Businesses and families begin to abandon Phoenix, creating a Grapes of Wrath-like exodus in reverse. Long lines of vehicles clog the freeways, heading east towards the Mississippi and north toward Oregon and Washington. Burning hot, parched, and broke, the city that rose from the ashes achieves its apogee and falls back toward the fire. -- Dead Pool, by James Lawrence Powell pp. 239-240.

Yikes! Lighten up!

I'm not sure I understand your point of pointing out Phoenix's "vulnerabilities." All cities have them, they just manifest themselves in different ways depending on location. The Southeast has hurricanes; the Midwest, blizzards and tornadoes; the west coast, earthquakes and tsunami risk; the Pacific northwest, volcanoes and lahar risk; the east coast, too many people, tsunami risk.

And, all cities, terrorism risk.

Here's an idea: Write about one city/country on the planet that "doesn't" have its/their own unique "vulnerabilities." Then you'd have an interesting read.

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