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Is it better to put food waste down the garbage disposal or throw it out in the trash? I’ll be a guest on Jerome McDonnell's Worldview program on WBEZ 91.5 FM Tuesday, August 26 at approximately 12:40p.m. discussing this very question with Jerome and his co-host Kate Sackman of the EcoMyths Alliance. Also joining me will be Northwestern University’s expert on life cycle analysis, Professor Eric Masanet.
Ever since the big storm of June 30/July 1, I’ve been pondering the intense rain events we’ve been experiencing in the Chicagoland area in recent years. As I noted in my newsletter from July 5 ("It Was Worse Than I Thought — Storm Story 2.0"), it’s not just the amount of rain that has been significant, but the intensity as well. If 3.6 inches of rain were to fall over a 24-hour period, the total would be a lot of rain, but the local sewers are designed to handle that amount. (Most local storm sewers are designed to handle a five-year storm — the amount of rain that has a one in five chance of occurring every year.) But if those 3.6 inches fall in 40 minutes — as happened near Midway Airport between 3:00 and 4:00 a.m. on Friday, August 22 — then no local sewers can accommodate so much rain in such a short a period of time. That amount of rain in 40 minutes is greater than a 100-year storm event (a rainstorm that has a one in one hundred chance of occurring every year. Big diff.)