“It is no surprise to any of our readers that, to put it lightly, the world is going to hell in a hand basket. Gas prices, temperatures, and natural disasters are all on the rise. The Earth has a pretty clear carrying capacity that everyone in power chooses to ignore for the sake of convenience. Like it or not, we have to be prepared for the consequences of each action that our leaders don’t take.
If there are days when living off the grid seems a troublesome or exhausting task, it is important to remember that in addition to whichever individual factors caused your family to choose this lifestyle, you have chosen the most conscientious and reliable way to live in a future that is so marred by uncertainty. As the stability of crops sinks and prices rise accordingly, it is more important than ever that you are able to depend upon your family and your own efforts to feed, clothe, and power your daily needs.”
“The world is rapidly running out of clean water. Some of the largest lakes and rivers on the globe are being depleted at a very frightening pace, and many of the most important underground aquifers that we depend on to irrigate our crops will soon be gone. At this point, approximately 40 percent of the entire population of the planet has little or no access to clean water, and it is being projected that by 2025 two-thirds of humanity will live in “water-stressed” areas. But most Americans are not too concerned about all of this because they assume that North America has more fresh water than anyone else does. And actually they would be right about that, but the truth is that even North America is rapidly running out of water and it is going to change all of our lives. Today, the most important underground water source in America, the Ogallala Aquifer, is rapidly running dry. The most important lake in the western United States, Lake Mead, is rapidly running dry. The most important river in the western United States, the Colorado River, is rapidly running dry. Putting our heads in the sand and pretending that we are not on the verge of an absolutely horrific water crisis is not going to make it go away. Without water, you cannot grow crops, you cannot raise livestock and you cannot support modern cities. As this global water crisis gets worse, it is going to affect every single man, woman and child on the planet. I encourage you to keep reading and learn more.”
“Few government research programs have produced as many questions and as much speculation as the High-Frequency Active Auroral Research Program (HAARP). From the potential of HAARP to disrupt and control communications to the possibility of controlling the weather and creating natural disasters, the sophistication of HAARP and the extent to which it is being used is the subject of much debate.
However, while many may speculate over just what the good folks working at the HAARP stations are up to, the fact is that an overwhelming majority are incapable of admitting that the facilities even exist in the first place.
Yet, while denial might placate those who do not prefer to confront unpleasant facts, truth does not mold itself to the wishes and desires of the willfully ignorant. Matters concerning the existence of HAARP and its ability to produce quite amazing phenomena are clearly documented in scientific literature as well as by those who have researched the program independently for years.”
Via Activist Post
” Drought and the high cost of feed mean cattle numbers in the United States look like falling below 90 million head for the first time in 60 years.
The US industry is built around producing grain fed cattle through feedlots but high prices and a lack of cattle is slowing the market.
Dr Derrell Peel from Oklahoma State University says the pressure is getting too much for some feedlots.
“I think some of these feedlots that have been under some level of financial stress for a number of years.”
“The stress has grown certainly in the last two to three years and that stress will increase dramatically in the next two years.”
“I do expect to see as a result of that additional closings of some of those feedlots.”"
“U.S. corn and wheat stockpiles shrank far more this summer than grain markets thought, the government reported Friday, and corn prices soared on prospects that heavy demand and drought-decimated crops will keep markets tight.
Corn futures were limit up — at the daily ceiling — at $7.56-1/2 a bushel in Chicago at midday. “Synthetic” bids indicated corn was worth $7.59 a bushel.
Corn futures surged nearly 6% and hit the daily limit on the Chicago Board of Trade after the U.S. Department of Agriculture reported corn stocks on Sept. 1 were below 1 billion bushels for the first time in eight years. The surge in corn prices pulled up wheat and soybean prices, too, analysts said.
The worst U.S. drought in half a century has decimated crops, and tight supplies should keep commodity prices at record levels and boost prices at the grocery store.
USDA’s survey of farmers and warehouses showed 988 million bushels of corn on hand — 11% less than expected — on Sept. 1. That date is the start of the corn marketing year and the traditional low point for supplies, as it comes before this year’s harvest gets added to the stockpiles.”
“Blistered by the drought, Wisconsin farmers face critical decisions this fall, including whether to remain in business or quit and do something else for a living.
For some, the damage to their crops is not recoverable. Without adequate crop insurance, they face steep financial losses that could force them out of farming.
Livestock and dairy farmers also could be forced to quit if the price of animal feed – because of the drought – becomes more than they can afford.
It would not be surprising if some people have to sit at the kitchen table this fall, after the harvest, and make hard decisions about their livelihood, said Kevin Jarek, a University of Wisconsin-Extension agent in Outagamie County.
Wisconsin has far fewer farms now than in the past, partly because many small, less-profitable operations have faded from the landscape.
Just 20 years ago, for example, there were 30,156 dairy farms in the state, compared with about 12,000 today.”
“This is an important update on the U.S. drought of 2012, the combined record-setting July land temperatures, and their impact on food prices, water availability, energy, and even U.S. GDP.
Even though the mainstream media seems to have lost some interest in the drought, we should keep it front and center in our minds, as it has already led to sharply higher grain prices, increased gasoline costs (via the pass-through of higher ethanol costs), impeded oil and gas drilling activity in some areas (due to a lack of water), caused the shutdown of a few operating electricity plants, temporarily reduced red meat prices (but will also make them climb sharply later) as cattle are dumped in response to feed- and pasture-management concerns, and blocked and/or reduced shipping on the Mississippi River. All this and there’s also a strong chance that today’s drought will negatively impact next year’s Winter wheat harvest, unless a lot of rain starts falling soon. “
Via Zero Hedge
“With one of the worst droughts in decades causing corn prices to escalate, Americans may be forced to choose between putting meat on the dinner table and filling their gas tanks. At the heart of the problem is a battle between meat and ethanol producers over how best to use this year’s shrinking corn crop.
The debate over using America’s food crops to produce fuel has been brewing since 2008 when a boom in commodities and surging food prices brought into question the ethics of diverting corn to the production of ethanol, which Washington promotes as a viable and environmentally friendly alternative to imported oil.
Arid conditions in the Midwest this year have prompted the Department of Agriculture to cut its corn-harvest forecast 17%, sending corn prices to a record of $8.49 a bushel on Aug. 10. Corn and corn by-products are used in nearly 70% of all grocery items and is a major source of feed for cattle and chicken.
The pressure on corn production has risen sharply since the implementation of the 2005 U.S. Renewable Fuel Standard. A certain volume of the nation’s transportation fuel must be blended with non-fossil fuels such as ethanol, distilled primarily from corn. This year’s ethanol requirement is 13.2 billion gallons, up from 12.6 billion gallons in 2011. That figure is set to grow to 13.8 billion gallons in 2013. That is projected to rise to 36 billion gallons in 2022 according to the Renewable Fuels Association.
This year’s poor corn crop and high prices are partly to blame for the high price of gasoline. At last check, the average retail price for a gallon of gasoline had ticked up to $3.72, a 7% jump from the $3.47 nationwide average just a month ago, according to the AAA Daily Fuel Gauge Report.”
“Soybeans were sharply higher on commercial and technical buying. The trade’s watching the early part of the Pro Farmer crop tour and keeping an eye out for any new export demand, especially from China. Dow Jones Newswires adds the cash basis was higher again Monday, supported by the strong demand. According to the USDA, 91% of soybeans are at the pod setting stage, compared to 79% last year and 83% for the five year average, while 4% are dropping leaves, compared to 1% both last year and on average, with 31% of the crop in good to excellent condition, up 1% from a week ago. Soybean meal and oil were higher, following beans, with meal maintaining a decided advantage in the product spread. China’s National Grain and Oils Information Center projects August soybean imports at 4.5 million tons, compared to July’s more than two year high of 5.87 million tons.
Corn was higher on fund and commercial buying. Corn’s also keeping an eye on the Pro Farmer crop tour results and Mexico bought 121,000 tons of U.S. corn, with 99,000 for 2012/13 delivery and 22,000 tons for 2013/14 delivery. USDA reports 89% of corn is at the dough making stage as of Sunday, compared to 67% last year and 66% on average, with 60% dented, compared to 28% last year and 29% on average. 17% of the crop has reached maturity, compared to 4% both last year and on average, and 4% has been harvested, compared to 1% both a year ago and on average. 23% of corn is in good to excellent shape, unchanged from last week, with 51% poor to very poor, which is also unchanged from last week. Ethanol futures were higher.”
” Nearly 100 boats and barges were waiting for passage Monday along an 11-mile stretch of the Mississippi River that has been closed due to low water levels, the U.S. Coast Guard said.
New Orleans-based Coast Guard spokesman Ryan Tippets said the stretch of river near Greenville, Miss., has been closed intermittently since Aug. 11, when a vessel ran aground.
Tippets said the area is currently being surveyed for dredging and a Coast Guard boat is replacing eight navigation markers. He says 40 northbound vessels and 57 southbound vessels were stranded and waiting for passage Monday afternoon.”
Via Yahoo News