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Pungent Curry

April 9, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

The latest version of the IPCC report is published and once again it will go unread by the great masses of climate science deniers and unreported by the media. So it might be useful to revisit the fundamental physical realities associated with human-caused climate change or anthropogenic global warming (AGW). These seven physical facts are true and are not disputed by any science:

  1. Carbon dioxide and methane are greenhouse gases. This is rigorously supported by experiment, observation and analysis.
  2. Water vapor is a strong positive feedback. If the planet warms for whatever reason, there will be more water vapor and water is a greenhouse gas and will amplify the initial warming.
  3. … Continue Reading

Extreme Irrationality Is Extremely Irritating

March 5, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“Hurricane Sandy was truly astounding in its size and power. At its peak size, twenty hours before landfall, Sandy had tropical storm-force winds that covered an area nearly one-fifth the area of the contiguous United States. Since detailed records of hurricane size began in 1988, only one tropical storm (Olga of 2001) has had a larger area of tropical storm-force winds, and no hurricanes has. … Most incredibly, ten hours before landfall, the total energy of Sandy’s winds of tropical storm-force and higher peaked at 329 terajoules–the highest value for any Atlantic hurricane since at least 1969. This is 2.7 times higher than Katrina’s peak energy, and is equivalent to five Hiroshima-sized atomic bombs. At landfall, Sandy’s tropical storm-force winds spanned 943 miles of the U.S. coast. No hurricane on record has been wider.” – Jeff Masters [1] … Continue Reading

Big Introduction to Big Data

February 26, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“The extraction of actionable knowledge from the vast amounts of available digital information seems to be the natural next step in the ongoing evolution from the Information Age to the Knowledge Age.” –Martin Hilbert Big Data for Dev.; pre-published version, Jan. 2013.

“But the number of meaningful relationships in the data – those that speak to causality rather than correlation and testify to how the world really works – is orders of magnitude smaller. Nor is it likely to be increasing at nearly so fast a rate as the information itself; there isn’t any more truth in the world than there was before the Internet or the printing press. Most of the data is just noise, as most of the universe is filled with empty space.” – Nat Silver “The Signal and the Noise” p250

In the following discussion we will use the same notation one uses in an Excel spreadsheet. The asterisk or “*” means “times” or multiplication and the up arrow or caret “^” means “raised to the power of”.

A few weeks ago I posed the question whether Homo sapiens (all of us, you, me, Americans and everybody) are sufficiently scientifically literate to survive the technological world we’ve created. The National Science Foundation had developed a test for scientific literacy but the answers to their questions should have been acquired in elementary school. I speculated that the NSF questions do not test for what I called “sufficient” science literacy.

Figure 1 is a plot of the energy flow through the human economy during the last two thousand years as well as the world GDP during the same period of human history. That they align is no coincidence. Growth of an individual, an ecosystem or an economy requires energy flow and this growth is fundamentally constrained by any physical limits on this rate of flow.

Figure 1, Energy flow through the human economy during the last two millennia (red curve) and human accumulation of wealth (blue curve)

This figure introduces some scientific tools which we all need to understand but which we as individuals and collectively seem not to have assimilated. The exponential function itself is poorly understood. It is impossible for humans to continue to increase energy flow exponentially indefinitely. This trend will end. Wealth cannot therefore continue to grow exponentially either. This is what energy economists and ecologists mean when they point out that continued economic growth is unsustainable. It is simply an acknowledgment of the finiteness of our world being only 12,742 km in diameter living off an energy gradient between the 5778 degrees Kelvin temperature at the surface of the sun (our energy source) and the 3 degrees Kelvin temperature of deep space (our energy sink). The importance of this discussion is that many economists believe our economy is entering an information age or knowledge age whereby we can continue economic growth independent of real physical resources by simply growing “information” and selling it back and forth to each other. We will discuss this in a future article.

The second thing to note is the use of scientific notation. We live in a world of large numbers growing larger and small numbers getting smaller. The NSA’s new data center will be able to process several Yotta Bytes ( or YB or 10^24 Bytes) worth of data every year and nanotechnology is the latest economic and technological fad measured in nanometers (nm or 10^-9 meters) a very small size. The amount of money wrapped up in derivatives and the net present value of the economic destruction of climate change must be expressed in Peta dollars (P$ or 10^15 dollars or thousands of trillions of dollars or millions of billions of dollars) an extremely large amount of money. Speaking of genetically modified organisms, the mass of a one copy of one genome is measured in fractions of a pico gram (pg or 10^-12 grams).

In order to comprehend the expanse of the data on which our science-based economic enterprise depends, we need to understand scientific notation. While the concept of scientific notation is easy to grasp by any person in a matter of minutes, it takes some experience to get used to scientific notation so that it becomes second nature. Familiarity and ease of use takes time, effort and practice.

In discussing energy, economy or big data or the human condition, there is no other way to express the information than by using scientific notation. I postulate that two necessary (but not sufficient) requirements for sufficient scientific literacy are the understanding of the exponential function and the familiarity with scientific notation.

To appreciate how this applies to big data consider figure 2. The inset figure was published in the Economist based on data provided by Martin Hilbert [1]. If we step back a bit we see that information growth is the over achiever of all exponential curves. Both information and information storage are growing hyper exponentially, as is the capacity of our networks to communicate information which is not shown. Secondly, we have to use Exabytes or EB or 10^18 to express the phenomenal amount of information. Note that information creation has surpassed information storage. We have to throw the stuff away.

Some questions we want to explore in this series include whether or not we can base an economy on information decoupled from resources as economists assume. What is the difference between information and knowledge; and between knowledge and wisdom? Is there any benefit to trolling vast data bases such as Google’s to determine important trends? How long can these exponential growth trajectories be maintained? Where is all this leading us?

To answer these questions and more we need to feel comfortable with very large and incredible small numbers spanning tens of orders of magnitude. I suggest searching Wikipedia for “orders of magnitude”, and the “International System of Units (SI)”.

Here are some interesting examples of the use of scientific notation applied to energy from Wikipedia:

2*10^-33 Joules is the average kinetic energy of translational motion of a molecule at the lowest temperature reached as of 2003, 100 picokelvins (100*10^-12).

4.1 zJ or 4.1*10-21 Joules is the common rough approximation for the total thermal energy of each molecule in a system at 25 degrees C or 77 degrees F and 2.856 zJ is by Landauer’s principle, the minimum amount of energy required at the same temperature to change one bit of information.

20 nJ or 20 nano Joules or 20*10^-9 is the mass-energy of the particle believed to be the Higgs Boson (125.3 GeV, Giga electron Volts billions of electron Volts) announced on March 14, 2013. By the way, the Large Hadron Collider generates 5*10^20 Bytes per day of data but only 0.001% are recorded or 5 Peta Bytes each day. This is 0.2% of all generated human data when it is turned on.

1 Joule is approximately the kinetic energy produced as an extra small apple (100 grams) falls 1 meter against Earth’s gravity. Scientists and Engineers express 1 as 10^0 or in fact any number to the power of 0 is identically 1.

1.361 kJ or kilo Joules or 1.361*10^3 Joules is the total solar radiation received from the Sun by 1 square meter at the altitude of Earth’s orbit above the Sun’s surface per second. This is called the solar constant though over geologic time of course it isn’t a constant. This is the solar energy the Earth intercepts at the top of the atmosphere before any of it is reflected back out into space.

88 TJ or TeraJoules was the yield of the Fat Man atomic bomb dropped on the city of Nagasaki on August 9, 1945 and 32 TJ was the yield of Little Boy dropped on Hiroshima on August 6, 1945.

100 PJ or PetaJoules is the total energy from the Sun that strikes the face of the Earth each second.

500 EJ or 500 ExaJoules is the total world annual energy consumption in 2010.

500 ZettaJoules or 500 ZJ is the approximate energy released in the formation of the Chicxulub Crater in the Yucatan Peninsula by collision with a 6 mile in diameter asteroid at a speed of 45,000 miles per hour 65 million years ago. This impact caused the extinction of the dinosaurs and every animal larger than a cat.

While all of these numbers are interesting and many are useful some are very important to know and it is not possible to comprehend them without the use of scientific notation. More next time.

Figure 2, Cumulative human information creation (dark blue curve and dotted curve) and cumulative information storage capability (light blue curve and solid curve).

[1] Figure 2 is adapted from “Special Report: Data, data everywhere”, The Economist February 27, 2010. Data source: Martin Hilbert and Priscila López, The World’s Technological Capacity to Store, Communicate, and Compute Information, Science 332, 60 (2011); DOI: 10.1126/science.1200970

Into the Denier Den

February 18, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“If you have ever walked barefoot through a seaside mudflat, you’ve felt the mud squishing up through your toes, and perhaps saw bubbles forming as your feet sank into the mud. The bubbles are methane.” – Donald Canfield, Oxygen, a four billion year history, Princeton, 2014.

A friend asked if I was familiar with an ecologist named Daniel Botkin and his book The Moon in the Nautilus Shell. It was a book club selection and my friend was curious why Botkin was agnostic about human-caused climate change (anthropogenic global warming, AGW); was Botkin a denier, a skeptic or correct about the science? I replied that if he had evidence he was a skeptic and if he didn’t he was in denial. … Continue Reading

The Party of Lincoln (Conclusion)

February 10, 2014 by Blue Ridge Leader Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“Increasingly intense droughts in California, all of the Southwest, and even into the Midwest have everything to do with human-made climate change.” James Hansen [i-1]

California’s Central Valley—prime agricultural land—is being hit the hardest by the state-wide drought which could cause catastrophic losses to crops and food supply. http://ecowatch.com/2013/12/27/devastating-drought-continues-california/

Tony Noerpel

I began this series four weeks ago and this is the fifth and final segment.

The Party of Lincoln

Environmental destruction is the great moral issue of our time, just as slavery was in 1860. The Republican Party, the Party of Lincoln, was established in the 1850’s specifically to prevent the expansion of slavery to the United States’ Western territories [21]. … Continue Reading

The Party of Lincoln (Part Four)

February 6, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“Should any political party attempt to abolish social security, unemployment insurance, and eliminate labor laws and farm programs, you would not hear of that party again in our political history.” Dwight D. Eisenhower [i-1]

I began this series three weeks ago and this is the fourth segment.

An interesting characteristic of the way humans organize ourselves since the discovery of agriculture is that it is inevitably hierarchical. One or a few elitist and entitled individuals bubble to the top and amass extreme wealth and power and perhaps not surprisingly only rarely are these intelligent, wise and good choices. In fact they are not choices at all. Democracy interferes with this natural process it seems by inserting a bit of randomness. Democracy often breaks the chain of foolishness engendered by aggregated wealth and power. Even Milton Friedman, who understood very little, understood that concentrated power was bad but he never grasped the obvious connection between concentrated wealth and concentrated power. They are the same thing. Friedman ironically developed an economic ideology which by promoting concentrated wealth leads to exactly the thing he was most afraid of: soviet style central planning. That is where conservative Republicans are taking us today. … Continue Reading

The Party of Lincoln (Part Three)

January 29, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“The physical sciences, often called the ‘hard sciences’, are really the easy ones. They are underpinned by conservation laws and invariance principles in ways that differ from the biological, and even more the social, sciences.” Robert M. May, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, [1].

Two weeks ago I began a series called “The Party of Lincoln.” The premise is that one possible way to avoid self-extinction might begin with voting for candidates who acknowledged the reality of human-caused global warming, i.e., specifically voting against Republican candidates. Many people might believe that the risk then would be voting against the candidate who had a better grasp of economic reality. Clearly this isn’t true as anybody who does not accept physical reality doesn’t have any idea how the economy works either. … Continue Reading

The Party of Lincoln (Part Two)

January 23, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“The physical sciences, often called the ‘hard sciences’, are really the easy ones. They are underpinned by conservation laws and invariance principles in ways that differ from the biological, and even more the social, sciences.” Robert M. May, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, [1].

Climate Reality

On the most basic level and referring to the Robert May quote above, the study of planetary climate systems is a physical science. I’ve described most of the forcings and feedbacks previously [2]. Carbon dioxide is a greenhouse gas and has certain other physical properties which result in its being the principle greenhouse gas or thermostat of any planet similar to Earth [3]. At the temperature and atmospheric pressure at the surface of our planet carbon dioxide is a gas and is well-mixed in the atmosphere. Water by contrast is a liquid and only very reluctantly vaporizes. We have oceans of liquid water on our planet’s surface and yet very little water vapor. It is not well mixed in the atmosphere. There is very little water vapor over the Sahara or Antarctica or over any other desert. Since the temperature falls precipitously with altitude over the surface the percentage of water vapor falls dramatically as well. … Continue Reading

The Party of Lincoln

January 13, 2014 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“The physical sciences, often called the ‘hard sciences’, are really the easy ones. They are underpinned by conservation laws and invariance principles in ways that differ from the biological, and even more the social, sciences.” Robert M. May, Department of Zoology, University of Oxford, [1].

Tony Noerpel

Executive Summary

I’ve done it again. I’ve taken a very simple theme and went crazy with it. Since this piece is much longer than anybody’s attention span, it needs an executive summary.

There is a myth in American politics that both political parties are the same so it does not really matter which one we vote for. This is not true. It is my experience that two groups of people hold this view. Those of us who voted for Ralph Nader in 2000 hold this view because voting for Nader helped put George W. Bush in the White House and of course we would agree that Bush was one of the worst presidents our country ever had. Even the Republican Party did not invite the sitting president to John McCain’s nominating convention in 2008. We just don’t want to admit we made a mistake. There are many moderates who voted for Bush in 2000 who aver that both parties are just as bad, too. Those of us in this camp are also reluctant to admit we blew it. Nobody likes to admit being wrong. I certainly don’t. Well, grow up everybody. Admitting we were wrong is cathartic. It actually feels good to fess up that we screwed up. … Continue Reading

Are We Sufficiently Science Literate?

December 10, 2013 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet 4 comments

“The only thing that stands between a man and being free is this foolish thing called greed” – “Greed”, a song by Buddy Dunlap.

The widening gap between the reality of human-caused or anthropogenic global warming (AGW) and its eventual severity on one hand and public opinion on the other in the United States is confounding. The debate is not between advocates of multiple competing hypotheses attempting to explain the observed phenomena, which is what happens in science. Rather it is an asymmetric confrontation between scientists using evidence to discover a signal and ideologues generating noise. Finding a denier signal if it exists within their noise is much more difficult than one might think [1]. However, it has been my personal experience that anybody with sufficient scientific literacy who may have been skeptical can be easily convinced of the truth of AGW by the evidence as well as by lack of evidence supporting whatever skeptical views they might have previously held. By contrast it is not easy to convince deniers because they do not know what evidence is, a sad reality which the fossil fuels industry exploits [2]. It is only by meticulously avoiding evidence that deniers can frame their case at all. … Continue Reading

Taking It Slow

December 2, 2013 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“And I have made much more progress in recognizing the errors of others than my own.” – Daniel Kahneman, Thinking Fast and Slow [1].

Isn’t that the truth? Kahneman is not writing about perceiving what others do or write as errors when in fact they are not. He is describing how much easier it is to objectively observe the mistakes of others which if we committed we’d never notice. When I noticed that Nate Silver applied Bayes statistics incorrectly in his chapter on global warming in his book The Signal and the Noise, I was on it like a hawk on a small rodent [2]. I might have misapplied Bayes Rule a hundred times without noticing the errors I might have been making if I had the chance. If Silver had gotten it right in the first place, I may have never studied Bayes Rule on my own and I may never have actually applied it at all to anything. This effort on my part was very intense and exhausting but immensely rewarding. Expending considerable effort for a rather long period of time without having to exert will power is described by Kahneman as being in a “flow”. I have heard it called being in a zone. And that is where I was for the last three weeks. It was awesome; way superior to video games, television or drugs. … Continue Reading

To the Arctic: Amplified and Bayes Applied

November 27, 2013 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

“In accordance with Bayes’ theorem, prediction is fundamentally a type of information-processing activity – a matter of using new data to test our hypotheses about the objective world, with the goal of coming to truer and more accurate conceptions about it.” Nate Silver


I like Nate Silver and I feel bad about criticizing his book “The Signal and the Noise”. But after reading his global warming chapter twice through I have to admit that he deserves the criticism. Without a doubt, when he writes about the physics of climate change for the most part he is spot on. And I applaud his effort to try to understand it. However, my critique is technically valid, no apologies there; Silver blew his Bayesian analysis. He missed a perfectly good opportunity to contribute to a reduction of the noise level of the discourse increasing it instead. This is exactly the goal of the fossil fuels industry. So long as there is lots of noise, nobody sees the signal. I sent a draft to Silver and asked for comments so he has had a chance to defend himself or do the mea culpa. He did not respond so my conscience is clear. The mistakes he makes in applying Bayesian analysis to the global warming problem include:

  • He uses false new data introducing misinformation, which has been comprehensively debunked. See ref [17].
  • He ignores true information.
  • He assumes that the climate system is memoryless.
  • He only applies the analysis to the IPCC consensus hypothesis and not to the myriad denier hypotheses.

… Continue Reading

Energy Summit Comments

November 13, 2013 by Tony Noerpel Columns, Sustainable Planet Be the first to comment

Both Sustainable Loudoun’s 2013 energy summit and climate discussion went well. Kent Klitgaard the featured speaker at the energy summit, held on October 25 at GWU, called me the night before from a hospital bed in post op. He had been rushed to the hospital for an emergency appendectomy. Obviously, he was not going to be able to travel and deliver his talk the following evening. I told him not to worry. He could send me his charts in the morning. I could review them and call him with questions and deliver the talk myself. What else was I going to do? A friend Kenneth Davidson, an antitrust lawyer who has written several books would be attending and I would invite him to participate in the Q and A discussion afterwards. We would muddle through. … Continue Reading

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Sustainable Planet

Pungent Curry

9 Apr 2014


The latest version of the IPCC report is published and once again it will go unread by the great masses of climate science deniers and unreported by the media. So it might be useful to revisit the fundamental physical realities …

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Ask Dr. Mike

Understanding Teen Suicide

1 Apr 2014


By Michael Oberschneider, Psy.D. Northern Virginia has recently experienced several teen suicides. Last month, two Langley High School students took their own lives just a day apart from one another, and this month it appears two students at Woodson High …

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Virginia Gardening

Spring Is Coming

4 Mar 2014


By Donna Williamson March is an in-between month – some cold and the return of glorious warmth now and then. One way to bring some delight inside is forcing spring-blooming branches. You can cut branches of forsythia, cherry, crabapple, kerria, …

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Sushi's Corner

An Easter Swim

1 Apr 2014

Screen Shot 2014-04-01 at 11.10.56 AM

I felt like a silly nim “cow” poop with these Easter bows in our hair. Okay Nelly, maybe you didn’t because you’re a girl. But me, a Mighty Cairn Terrier male? – PLEASE! Pleasing Mrs. B for Easter pictures was …

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Amy V. Smith's Money Talks

What Baseball Can Teach You About Financial Planning

1 Apr 2014

Amy Smith-BRL

Spring training is a tradition that baseball teams and baseball fans look forward to every year. No matter how they did last year, teams in spring training are full of hope that a new season will bring a fresh start. …

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Go Take a Hike

Blandy Experimental Farm

6 Jun 2012


By Molly Pinson Simoneau It’s no secret that I love a challenging hike. I’ve written here about hiking sections of the Appalachian Trail and Shenandoah National Park. I’ve taken vacations with my family to Colorado where I’ve attempted to conquer a “fourteener” (a summit that is higher than 14,000 feet), …


Real Estate Ticker

A Buying Opportunity?

6 Nov 2013

Carl Fischer headshot

By Carl Fischer As a direct result of the uncertainty that has arisen from national and regional politics, with its unsettling effect on the Northern Virginia area, for the past two months there has been a market slowdown which has …

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From the Farm

From the Farm

5 Jul 2012

From the Farm

When the heat index reaches 110 degrees, as it has been doing recently, I try to keep in the shade, or stay indoors. But my lavender, about halfway from full bloom, seems to thrive in it. Hot and dry, I …

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April 2014
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: Art Gallery Reception for Featured Artists -- Abstract painter Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and contemporary painter Sandra Iafrate


April 12, 2014N/A

Meet Evelyn and Sandra and other gallery artists during a free, open to the public reception for this month's Featured Artists' exhibit "Living Color,” showcasing two accomplished painters Evelyn Lopez de Guzman and Sandra Iafrate, in a vivid and dynamic presentation of color, shape and our surroundings.

Evelyn Lopez de Guzman’s vibrant paintings awaken the viewer to connect with nature and the modern world through an interplay of shape, color, and textural materials.

Sandra Iafrate’s combination of realistic and surrealist interpretation of flowers, foliage and landscapes on spacious canvases convey a sense of movement and playfulness.

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Easter at "The Park"


April 19, 2014

Celebrate Easter at historic Morven Park with crafts for kids, an egg hunt in the formal gardens plus a traditional egg roll on the Davis Mansion lawn. Have a family photo taken with the Easter Bunny. Children should bring a basket for the hunt and a large spoon for the egg roll. $10/participating child (ages 2-12), $3/adult. Register at www.MorvenPark.org.

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VAL's Pals Kids Club


April 30, 2014

Join Inova Loudoun Hospital as the present their Beamer the Dog Program.

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May 4, 2014

Scouting for Bricks is an exhibit showing the Love for everything LEGO® . Come see amazing LEGO® creations by Fans of LEGO®, LEGO® trains, Mindstorms robots. We will also have live Star Wars Stormtroopers and an interactive play area with over 100,000 LEGO bricks. Scouting for Bricks is fun for the Whole Family! Visit us at www.ScoutingForBricks.com.

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View From the Ridge

Rural Loudoun Is Different, and We Say Dark Skies Do Matter

4 Mar 2014


In February of this year a sell out crowd gathered at the county public seat in Leesburg to provide feedback to the Loudoun County Planning Commission on the idea of adding additional sports lights to the upper athletic fields at Franklin Park. Franklin Park includes a really wonderful performing arts …



Steady and Nobull

4 Mar 2014

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Park and Ride Lots for Western Loudoun

4 Mar 2014


In 2003, the county purchased 22 commuter buses to serve a growing demand for bus service to Washington D.C. The demand has grown exponentially ever since. The county now owns or leases 65 large commuter buses (with plush seats and on board restrooms) and more are being added every year. The buses are often filled to standing room only as …



Sadie’s Race 5K and Fun Run Scheduled for Sunday May 18

9 Apr 2014


Sadie Smile Foundation is putting on the third annual Sadie’s Race/Walk and Kids Fun Run to Benefit Smile Train in Purcellville Sunday, May 18th this year. The race starts at 8:00 a.m. at the train station at 200 N 21st Street in Purcellville. Sign up at Active.com. When Sara Ablard lost her five year-old daughter, Sadie, two years ago, she …

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Dr. Joseph Rogers Dies at Family Farm

1 Apr 2014

Dr. Joseph Megeath Rogers, 90, died on Saturday March 8, 2014 at his Hillbrook Farm near Hamilton following a stroke. Physician, farmer, businessman, rural land conservationist, philanthropist and expert horseman, Dr. Rogers was a tireless advocate and practitioner of country living whose contributions in a broad range of interests were made quietly and with little fanfare. His public persona was …

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Zoldos Presented Citizen of the Year Award

1 Apr 2014


At the biweekly March meeting of the Lovettsville Town Council, Mayor Bobby Zoldos was presented the 2013 Citizen of the Year from the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans. Presenting the award was Rick Adams, current president along with Board Member Peter Mullally and  Vice President Jeff Boogaard. Adams said, “On behalf of the Lovettsville Waterford Ruritans, we would like to present the …

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Around Virginia

Wolf Won’t Seek Re-election


Rep. Frank Wolf (R-10th) today announced that he would not seek election to an 18th term in 2014. He released the following statement announcing his decision: “I have decided not to seek re-election to the U.S. Congress in 2014. It has been an honor to serve the people of northern …

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Virginia Can and Should Work Harder to Combat Hunger


By Congressman Frank Wolf Last year, the USDA reported a record number of Americans are struggling to put food on their tables. Across the nation, 49 million people – including 17 million children and six million seniors – are going hungry, a number that has grown substantially over the last …

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Kaine Statement on Navy Yard Shooting


U.S. Senator Tim Kaine released the following statement on today’s shooting at the Washington Navy Yard: “My thoughts and prayers are with everyone impacted by today’s tragic shooting at the Washington Navy Yard. As we learn more about the horrific events that unfolded this morning, my deepest sympathies go out …

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Nominate Your Hometown Hero

9 Apr 2014


Upper Loudoun Little League’s Hometown Heroes scholarship closes on April 21, 2014. The application is available online at ULLL.org. The scholarship is open to all graduating seniors who played baseball for ULLL at some point in their growing up years.

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Lady Vikings Give Back

10 Feb 2014

The Loudoun Valley Girls basketball team held an event on Friday, February 7 at LVHS. The Lady Vikings celebrated “Pink Night” by honoring those who are battling breast cancer or have been affected by breast cancer. The event was held in conjunction with an event held at Woodgrove earlier this …

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Medicaid Expansion Battle Heating Up

4 Mar 2014


Did you know that there’s a very real possibility that a DC-style budget battle and government shutdown could come to Virginia? The Medicaid expansion battle …

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Endorsing for Profit Businesses?

4 Mar 2014

town of purcellville sign

I recently received an automated email message from the Town of Purcellville soliciting nominations for volunteer award recipients in cooperation with the Purcellville Business Association …


Another Vote To Overrule Purcellville’s Board of Architectural Review

4 Mar 2014

town of purcellville sign

The Purcellville Town Council, foolishly, in the view of many and perhaps most, has overruled its Board of Architectural Review and approved Mark Nelis’s and …



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