Study Of Florida COVID-19 Deaths, Solar Power in the Sunshine State, PPE Litter in Boca Raton
This Wednesday March 31st, sequence of the sundial:
COVID-19 death study
Governor Ron DeSantis has vehemently defended his decision to keep Florida open – he argues that the state’s per capita death rate is not above the national trend.
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However, a new study published in the American Journal of Public Health estimates that Florida COVID-19 deaths may be under counted by the thousands.
“We have 5,000 deaths, which is above the historical trend of death in Florida, even when you factor in the officially reported number of COVID-19 deaths,” said Moosa Tatar, visiting professor at the Matheson Center for Health Care Studies and the Department of Population Health Sciences at the University of Utah. He is also one of the authors of the study.
“We had the historical trend of death in Florida and we predicted the number of deaths in the absence of the pandemic. I added these numbers to the official report and we found a loophole during that period, ”said Tatar.
Solar energy in the state of the sun
Florida is called the Sunshine State for a reason – we get almost 3,000 hours of sunshine on average every year. But when it comes to harnessing that sunshine for solar power, our state continues to lag behind places like California, North Carolina, and Texas.
“The biggest reason [we’re not as solar as California] That’s because our energy bills are pretty cheap compared to other states, ”said Daren Goldin, CEO of Goldin Solar – Florida’s largest solar installer.
He still believes solar power is viable in the state, especially as it becomes more financially beneficial for consumers.
And while the state isn’t as solar as it could be, Heaven Campbell, the new South Florida coordinator for Solar United Neighbors, said, “We’re one of the fastest growing states when it comes to adding solar and solar jobs, and it becomes an economic powerhouse in the [Florida]. ”
The transition to solar won’t be easy – solar panels can be an expensive upfront cost for homeowners. And for those who live in condos or large apartment buildings, getting approval from a homeowners association or condominium board is a whole different challenge.
Jessica Lewis, policy coordinator for the Sierra Club Florida, also sees obstacles at the state level.
“Our leadership has not taken the lead in this regard. In fact, they often employ guidelines that move us backwards in the pursuit of solar energy. That’s really the problem here, if our executives don’t want us to have solar, they will do everything in their power to keep us from transitioning to solar, ”said Lewis.
There is a bill in state legislation tabled by Orlando Democratic Representative Anna Eskamani that aims to move the state to 100% renewable energy by 2040. Solar energy would play a big part in this plan.
Solar energy in the state of the sun
PPE waste in Boca Raton
One type of garbage is becoming more common: gloves, masks, and all kinds of personal protective equipment. Now Boca Raton is among the first in Florida to increase fines for PPE waste.
Boca Raton City Councilor Andy Thomson introduced the ordinance after realizing how much junk he saw on his daily run.
“By nature, a mask is completely different because it is not only disrespectful, but also dangerous. You burden others who need to clean up after your potential biohazard mess. Rather than just explaining to people how bad it is to dispose of garbage, we let people know – when you do, you are faced with a ticket that you don’t want to pay for, ”said Thomson.
His mission is to farm all the streets of Boca to clean up rubbish along the way.
“So far I’ve collected 260 pounds of rubbish and 308 pieces of PPE. It got to a point where there should be so many that I actually had to carry a separate bag for the PPE when we picked it up. Nowadays, when I’m done, I have a baggage scale that weighs exactly how much the trash is, ”Thomson said.
In Boca Raton, if someone is caught dropping a mask, gloves, or PPE and then walks away, they could be fined $ 250.