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Archive for the ‘Science’ Category

Bumblebee die-off threatens global food chain

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by Cam Fitzgerald
Posted originally April 10, 2011

Rick Ackerman writes: The essay below by Cam Fitzgerald, is a stark reminder that humanity could soon be facing problems even more serious than the collapse of the global economy.  The alarming die-off of bumblebees and other cross-pollinators may presage nothing less than the devastation of food supplies around the world.  A beekeeper himself, Cam warns that, unlike global warming, which is happening slowly, the death of bee colonies has been so precipitous that a solution needs to be found and implemented as quickly as possible, lest  the food chain suffer catastrophic damage. Although a pesticide called Clothianidin is suspected, we don’t have time for endless political debate, he warns. Time is running out, and that is why I would urge readers to spread awareness of the problem by disseminating this commentary as far and wide as possible.


Regarding this article discussing my views of how the world will look in the coming years, I am afraid I have very, very bad news for everyone. My story is not science-fiction nor is it conjecture and yet it has drawn me to a very sad conclusion following events over the past few years. The issue that follows has ramifications that may even suggest the eventual collapse of society itself.

Let me explain. In the latter part of the 19th century, a novel new chemical was developed called DDT. This synthetic chemical’s true calling and use was not realized, though, until sometime around the Second World War when a Swiss chemist named Paul Hermann Mueller first discovered its properties as an effective insecticide. He won the Nobel Prize for his efforts. The chemical found widespread use in agriculture and in the control of malaria-bearing mosquitoes, and for decades was one of the major means of pest control on crops. But our birds of prey were dying off in America as a result and there were strong suspicions that agricultural chemicals were to blame.

Evidence slowly mounted over a period of years to prove that the thin, crumbly shells of eggs laid by eagles and other raptors highest up on the food chain were the result of DDT contamination. A decade of environmental activism armed with a growing body of scientific studies led to significant political pressures before the chemical was finally (and permanently) banned from use in the United States.

And just in the nick of time too. The Peregrine Falcon, as a result of DDT poisoning that was accumulating in the birds bodies, had come within a feather of joining the list of extinct birds in North America. In California, the numbers of Peregrines known to exist barely exceeded ten nesting pairs in the year of the ban. The American eagle itself was on the endangered list, and a long list of predator raptors were close to joining the chorus of the condemned. The year was 1972.

Flash forward to today. The new enemy is also an insecticide. This time it has a much more ominous overtone, however, because this time the ultimate victim at the top of the food chain is you and I, and the endgame may well terminate with a global famine and bitter wars over agricultural croplands that support grains.

Clothianidin’s Role

No, we will not be poisoned directly by this chemical, but we could face serious food shortages and the loss of critical crops that will spell the end of the good times as we now know them. I only wish this were an urban myth. Most of you likely have no idea how close we already are to a cataclysmic failure of agricultural production brought on by the use of these chemicals. Judge for yourselves and read on.

The name of this chemical is a little more complicated this time around, and those suffering the worst effects are not nearly so warm and cuddly to most people as birds are, but the outcome of its use could potentially prove devastating. Commercially, this product is called Clothianidin. It is known as a neonicotinoid to farm guys and gals, and it specializes in killing bugs on crops.

Some of the victims unfortunately, mere insects to most people, are also the primary commercial means of pollination for crop production across the globe, responsible for doing the hard work that enables farms to produce 35% of all the foods we eat. I am talking about bees, of course. And they are dying off globally in such staggering numbers each and every year that the food chain itself will soon become seriously compromised if solutions are not found, and quickly.

70% Hive Failure Rate

Just two months back, we received the results in Saskatchewan for the winter mortality of the year 2009/2010, and the outcomes were not good — better than in the last few years, but still dismal. Over 21% of all bee colonies had not survived over-wintering.  We did relatively well. On Vancouver Island almost 70% of all hive colonies failed to survive until spring. Reports out the United States, Europe and China reveal that as many as one third of all hive colonies have perished in the last few years, and it is not uncommon to hear of individual beekeepers who were completely wiped out.

I know a few beekeepers in my province and after talking to them can tell you that the news they are giving me is not positive. There is a sense of foreboding for the future. One fellow in particular has just this past week informed me he was no longer keeping bees for honey production. He related that he had suffered a near complete and total loss of all his hives two years ago. I was shocked because I knew he was a serious, full-time beekeeper with hundreds of hives.

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Here Comes the Sun

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by Lawrence E. Joseph
excerpt from Aftermath, A Guide to Preparing and Surviving Apocalypse 2012
(paperback edition to be published August 2011)

Although the date would stump most trivia buffs, September 2, 1859, is when the greatest magnetic storm ever recorded hit the Earth. It is also the date likeliest to be replayed in 2012, with one important difference: this time, the devastation will be colossal.

The Carrington event, named after Richard Carrington, the amateur British astronomer who took the lead in observing and explaining it, was actually a one-two punch that uppercut the Earth over the course of a week. The first of the two massive solar explosions began forming some-time in mid-August 1859, when an unusually large sunspot appeared on the northwest portion of the Sun’s face. On August 27, it erupted like a zit, shooting out a Moon-sized glob of plasma, or supercharged gas. Such blasts are known as coronal mass ejections (CMEs).

CMEs are usually shaped like croissants, according to a discovery made in 2009 by STEREO, a pair of NASA probes that flank the Sun and photograph these explosions from opposite sides. According to Angelos Vourlidas of the Naval Research Laboratory, a computer model designer for the STEREO mission, CMEs are formed in a manner akin to that of twisting the ends of a rope around and around, tighter and tighter, until the middle bulges out. Instead of rope, Slinky-like lines of magnetic force twist out of the sunspots. Eventually, after enough twisting, the crescent-shaped coil of plasma snaps free and spins away from the Sun at a million miles per hour or more, which is just what happened in the Carrington event.

The first cosmic croissant of the Carrington event hit Earth the next day, August 28, 1859, causing some of the most beautiful auroras ever seen. The northern lights don’t normally extend down to Havana, Cuba, but this time they did, making the sky there appear as though it were stained with blood and on fire.

On September 1, 1859, the Sun erupted again, even more furiously. According to scientists’ reconstructions, the second Carrington CME was dozens of times more powerful than average, weighing in at about 10 billion tons and 10 trillion trillion watts (trillions of times more than the sum total of all electrical, mechanical, combustible, muscular, animal, and plant energy than has been produced or consumed in the history of the planet). Traveling at about 5 million miles per hour, it was also one of the fastest ever recorded. Think of a tennis ball machine suddenly rifling out a (molten, radioactive) basketball.

When CMEs launch, they create a shockwave that slaps the solar wind, a sphere of charged particles, mostly protons. This impact causes what is known as an SEP (solar energetic particle) event, which accelerates everything in its path exponentially; most of these supercharged particles take an hour or less to reach the Earth’s atmosphere, where they fuse nitrogen and oxygen atoms to create nitrates, which eventually settle as dust onto the poles. Although the Carrington SEP is generally considered the largest on record, back then no one noticed it because there were no instruments sensitive enough to detect it. (Evidence of the 1859 SEP impact has since been found in anomalous nitrate-laden ice core samples that date back to that time.)

Today, there are satellite-borne instruments sensitive enough to detect SEPs, most of which would probably have been fried by the Carrington event’s ferocity. Indeed, far lesser SEPs are blamed for having disabled a number of spacecraft, including Japan’s Nozomi satellite, dooming that nation’s mission to Mars. SEPs also threaten astronauts; a Carrington-scale event would imperil those aboard the International Space Station.

At 4:50 GMT on September 2, 1859, the second and by far the more powerful Carrington CME barreled into the Earth, fifteen to twenty hours behind the SEP shockwave it had detonated. The CME made quite a splash in the headlines, sizzling telegraph wires, causing fires, and filling the sky with an auroral glow that made midnight as bright as noon.

“The electricity that attended this beautiful phenomenon took possession of the magnetic wires throughout the country, and there were numerous side displays in the telegraph offices where fantastical and unreadable messages came through the instruments, and where the atmospheric fireworks assumed shape and substance in brilliant sparks,” reported the Philadelphia Evening Bulletin. The electrical blasts were so powerful that some telegraph operators disconnected the batteries to their equipment and were still able to send and receive messages just operating on the power that was heavenly supplied.

Were we hit today by a geomagnetic storm of equivalent strength to the Carrington event, our civilization could well be plunged into chaos. This is not an exaggeration. Rather, it is the consensus of those who presented at the National Academy of Sciences’ report Severe Space Weather Events: Understanding Societal and Economic Impacts, published in December 2008.

The report’s executive summary says:
Because of the interconnectedness of critical infrastructures in modern society, the impacts of severe space weather events can go beyond disruption of existing technical systems and lead to short-term as well as to long-term collateral socioeconomic disruptions. Electric power is modern society’s cornerstone technology, the technology on which virtually all other infrastructures and services depend. Collateral effects of a longer-term outage [such as would almost certainly result from a Carrington-scale space weather event] would likely include, for example, disruption of the transportation, communication, banking, and finance systems, and government services; the breakdown of the distribution of potable water owing to pump failure and the loss of perishable foods and medications because of lack of refrigeration. The resulting loss of services for a significant period of time in even one region of the country could affect the entire nation and have international impact as well.

Contributors from NASA, NOAA (National Oceanographic and Atmospheric Administration), the Smithsonian Institution, the United States Air Force, a number of major universities, and advanced technology corporations gave evidence that a contemporary Carrington-scale event would lead to deep and widespread social disruption. Basic to this contention are the enormous changes to the United States’ infrastructure over the past century and a half. Modern society is utterly dependent on electricity. The electrical system is the master system upon which all others depend. And it is vulnerable to historically large space weather events.

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Warning: Extreme weather, imminent earthquake danger

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by Piers Corbyn

EXTREME WEATHER AND EARTHQUAKE DANGER IMMINENT around 23rd-27th March warns Piers Corbyn

The very active solar region which emerged from the SE limb of the sun on the morning of 21st March is crackling with dangerous activity including extreme UV radiation and up to 50Mev proton bursts and its appearance along with other active regions on the sun fits our WeatherAction.com long-range WARNING for significant weather extremes and earthquakes in the period around 23rd-27th March, issued during February.


Solar activity details: http://spaceweather.com/archive.php?month=03&day=21&year=2011&view=view (= http://bit.ly/h13CuA  use forward button to get to next day) and http://www.lmsal.com/solarsoft/latest_events/ 2nd graph down purple blip is 50Mev. The other levels are different colours. Notice 1Mev is staying high on 22nd also. Note the Spaceweather link already shows a solar wind stream from a coronal hole will hit Earth 23/24th March, the newly reported activity on the sun will lead to earth hits following that. Solar wind hit 527km/sec – that’s fast on 23rd March. Geomagnetic Activity – should increase in 23-27th periods – See http://www.swpc.noaa.gov/rt_plots/kp_3d.html

We warned of these dangers – with weather event detail for USA, West Europe, Australia, New Zealand and BanglaDesh in forecasts issued around the end of February and repeated on the posting “15/16…March THE DANGEROUS TIMES THE WORLD IS IN….”  http://bit.ly/enMFIy


Piers Corbyn says “The recent extreme Earthquake events in the world were preceded by extreme events on the sun – specifically X level solar flares and related proton bursts. It appears to us that it is always the case that extreme weather and earthquake events are preceded by extreme events on the sun and historically proton events which are usually associated with X flares are an especially reliable warning of extreme weather, storm formation and earthquake events.

We have no forecast of specifically where the earthquake events are most likely except to say that the Pacific “ring of fire” is very vulnerable and new serious earthquake events in Japan and /or the West USA are very possible. Some other researchers** have also been making warnings of earthquake events around the present period. My main risk periods are a bit later than theirs because although lunar tidal effects (such as ‘Supermoon’ 19th March) are important we find the solar hits are crucial determinants. **Links to these forecasts of others which include comments on possible regions are available via the link above – http://bit.ly/enMFIy


More Significant – Magnitude 6.0 or above shown in Red –LINK http://earthquake.usgs.gov/earthquakes/recenteqsww/Quakes/quakes_all.php On 22nd (Okay for investigation given approx timings especially of Earthquakes) M=6.1 mid-Atlantic ridge is interesting as well as 4 quakes in Japan bigger than M=6 with 2 of M=6.6 . There was only one of M 6.0 or above (it was 6.1 in Japan) in previous 4 days 18-21 Mar. M 6.5 or above is probably more than an aftershock. For comparison the devastating New Zealand Earthquake of 21st Feb 2011 was M=6.3 but rather near the surface

#thaiquake 13.55z24Mar M6.8 http://1.usa.gov/dOgl4I CONFIRMS PiersCorbyn’s LongRange Extreme Quake warning 23-27Mar http://bit.ly/hBHho1


“The weather events are expected in two waves ~23/24th and ~26/27th and extreme earthquake events risk is significantly enhanced all through this period 23-27th March but probably more enhanced later with high risk continuing a day or so after 27th.

“The long range predicted weather events in the double period 23-27th March include:
– Snow deluges / cold blasts in N/ NE Britain & NW Europe
– USA A double whammy of major snow & blizzards (esp 25-27th) Great Lakes & West thereof; Tornadoes in South
– Australia Tropical Cyclone formation likely East of Queensland and Tornado possible New Zealand (North Island) prob 23/24th. Tornado formation risk is high in Bangladesh 26/27th

FULL DETAILS of these forecasts for the whole of March are available via http://bit.ly/dNhlNo . New subscribers now (late March) also will get access to the April forecasts when available at the end of March at no further charge.


USA 23rd March (as on twitter) MORE confirmation of W-Action 23-24th March  warnings. WeatherChannel: “242 severe reports as of 8:30pm EDT, most in a day since February 28th”. The reports were of large hail, damaging winds, tornado developments etc in various parts

N/NE Britain & West Europe 23rd March. Short range forecast maps show cold plunge starting and devloping over next few days in W Europe and N/NE Britain http://www.westwind.ch/?link=ukmb,http://www.wetterzentrale.de/pics/,.gif,bracka,brack0,brack0a,brack1,brack1a,brack2,brack2a,brack3,brack4 Note: S / SW parts and  Ireland will be warmer

As radioactive rain starts to pour, Japan engages in another cover up as it increases decontamination threshold sixteenfold

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by Tyler Durden
Posted originally March 21, 2011

Even as the market has now apparently fully priced in Fukushima, the bad news continues coming:

No surprise there: by now everyone is well aware that the fuel rods are if not completely then certainly partially destroyed. However, the real danger, and which explains why we have been following atmospheric conditions over Japan so closely, is that as Kyodo just reported, the rain is now pouring radioactive cats and dogs. But the most troubling development is that instead of being proactive and finally warning its citizens about the dangers, the Japanese government has just raised the decontamination threshold by nearly 20 times from 6,000 cpm to a stunning 100,000 cpm. Is is rather safe to assume that this number was not picked arbitrarily. (technical explanation at end of article)

From Kyodo:

Greater levels of radioactive materials found due to rain

TOKYO, March 22, Kyodo
Far greater amounts of radioactive iodine and cesium were found in rain, dust and particles in the air in some areas over a 24-hour period from Sunday morning due to rainfall, the science ministry said Monday.

”Considering the results of a separate test, radioactive materials in the air and drinking water are confined to levels that would not affect health,” an official of the Education, Culture, Sports, Science and Technology said. ”The impact on agricultural crops needs to be examined mainly by the Health, Labor and Welfare Ministry.”

In a notice to the nation’s 47 prefectures, the health ministry called on local governments on Monday to advise residents to stop giving babies water in forms such as baby formula if radioactive iodine is found in drinking water at levels greater than 100 becquerels per kiloliter.

”Babies can easily absorb radioactive iodine in their thyroid glands,” a ministry official said, explaining the reason for issuing the notice. The intake limit set by the central government is 300 becquerels per kiloliter of water.

The science ministry said separately traces of the substances were detected in drinking water sampled Sunday in nine prefectures but they were all below the intake limits set by the government. The nationwide survey showed both radioactive iodine and cesium were found in Ibaraki, Tochigi and Gunma prefectures, while iodine alone was found in Saitama, Chiba, Tokyo, Kanagawa, Niigata and Yamanashi.

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The downfall of science and the rise of intellectual tyranny

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by Mike Adams
Editor of NaturalNews.com
Originally posted Friday, January 21, 2011

THE VERY REPUTATION OF SO-CALLED “science” has been irreparably damaged by the invocation of the term “science” by GMO lackeys, pesticide pushers, mercury advocates and fluoride poisoners who all claim to have science on their side. It seems that every toxin, contamination and chemical disaster that now infects our planet has been evangelized in the name of “science.”

Where “science” used to be highly regarded in the 1950’s, today the term is largely exploited by pharmaceutical companies, biotech giants and chemical companies to push their own for-profit agendas. Actual science has little to do with the schemes now being pushed under the veil of science.

To make matters even worse for the sciences, many so-called “science bloggers” have been revealed to have financial ties to the very same companies whose profits are shored up by their activities. (see Age of Autism)

Rather than defending any sort of scientific truth, science bloggers have become the internet whores of Big Pharma, Monsanto, pesticide manufacturers, chemical companies and toxic mercury factories. There’s hardly a dangerous chemical in widespread use today that the science bloggers haven’t venomously defended as safe and effective. Many are just blatantly paid off by corporate entities to run around the internet pushing GMOs, chemicals and vaccines.

This realization has caused the science bloggers to be widely ridiculed by intelligent people who see right through their thinly-veiled (but well-funded) disinformation campaigns. Where science bloggers once had credibility, they now are seen as intellectual prostitutes for dangerous corporate agendas that benefit powerful companies at the expense of environmental health and human health.

If they weren’t doing all this in the name of science, it wouldn’t be so bad, actually. If they called themselves “corporate whore bloggers” instead of “science bloggers,” their actions wouldn’t be so harmful to the reputation of science itself. But, to the great detriment of actual science, they insist on calling themselves “science bloggers.”

Now the reputation of “science” itself is suffering

Because the for-profit GMO sellouts, poison pushers, vaccine zealots and corporate front groups continue to conduct their activities under the false name of “science,” the term is losing its meaning. This should be cause for alarm among those who practice legitimate science. (Where are the astrobiologists when you need them?)

As we’ve seen all too frequently, “science” can be easily distorted or exploited to achieve a desired political or profiteering goal. But the ruse is rather apparent – the public is awakening to the science fraud and learning that the term “science” doesn’t really mean what it used to. It’s suffering a loss of reputation to such a degree that the term “science” no longer means a system whereby intellectually honest people search for the underlying truths of how nature operates. Today, “science” is used not to search for truth, but to distort the truth.

Replace “science” with “fraud” to understand the spin

Instead of seeking knowledge and understanding, for example, “science” is used as an intellectual bludgeon to halt rational skepticism and discussion on topics such as GMOs, vaccines, mercury fillings, fluoride in the water, the mysterious deaths of animals, the collapse of honeybee populations and so on. It’s a kind of intellectual tyranny that has been invoked against those who oppose any kind of corporate agenda that can be dressed up to look like actual science.

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Jim Berkland: Major California earthquake predicted for March 19th – 26th

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from politicsandfinance.blogspot.com
Originally posted March 16, 2011


For an enlarged image of the map (left), click on: http://www.seismic.ca.gov/pub/shaking_18x23.pdf


Neil Cavuto interview with former USGS geologist Jim Berkland who claims a 75% success rate in earthquake prediction:

Watching Fox in order to stay current on the nuclear events unfolding in Japan, I listened to a Cavuto interview with Jim Berkland. Berkland is known as the man who predicted the World Series earthquake four days before it hit back in 1989. He is now predicting a major seismic event to occur in California sometime between the dates of the 19th and 26th of this month.

Eccentric? Maybe! But while past performance is no guarantee of future results, his is a voice that should be taken somewhat seriously.

Jim Berkland in his own words

“… Mainstream scientists generally try to debunk various aspects of my earthquake predictions or to ridicule me personally, with epithets such as crackpot or clown. My response is to question their own records in earthquake prediction, and to point out that the main action of a stream is not near the center, but closer to the edge. Near the fringes, with eddies and cross-currents, erosion and deposition are more effective, sometimes leading to changes in the course of the stream. Conformity does not lead to invention. Scientific progress is not achieved by majority vote. Following my pilgrimage to Gizeh [Egypt] with John Anthony West, I discovered the meaning of life: To seek your purpose and strive to achieve it. Anything less is a waste of existence. I am fortunate to have found that my purpose is to de-mystify earthquakes for the public so that meaningful preparations take the place of fatalistic attitudes, that often prove fatal.

The experts of High Science state that earthquake prediction is currently a scientific impossibility. I maintain that the topic is too important to leave to the experts and I continue to do the impossible with a better than 75% batting average, which is more than 300% greater than chance…”

Cavuto/Berkland interview excerpt from Fox video (above)

BERKLAND: Well, if it was, one in the northwest, in the Cascadia Trench, like we had in 1700, that would be a nine magnitude quake. I’m not predicting that. But I’m saying we just had a massive fish kill. Maybe a million fish died in Redondo Beach. They had a massive fish sweep in Mexico. We just had a bunch of whales come in close to San Diego.

CAVUTO: What does that presage? When you have events like that, what does that generally mean? What’s going on in the waters?

BERKLAND: Changes – changes in the magnetic field that often precede larger earthquakes. Most animals have the mineral magnetite in their bodies, including people. But it enables homing pigeons to get home. Just before big quakes, they often can’t get home. There is the delay factor. So we look for those kinds of things.

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National Radiation Map for U.S.

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Welcome to RadiationNetwork.com, home of the National Radiation Map, depicting environmental radiation levels across the USA, updated in real time every minute. This is the first web site where the average citizen (or anyone in the world) can see what radiation levels are anywhere in the USA at any time (see Disclaimer below).

Alert Level = 130 CPM



How the Map Works:
A growing number of Radiation Monitoring Stations across the country, using various models of Digital Geiger Counters, upload their Radiation Count data in real time to their computer using a Data Cable, and then over the Internet to this web site, all of this accomplished through GeigerGraph for Networks software.

How to Read the Map:
Referring to the Map Legend at the bottom left corner of the map, locate Monitoring Stations around the country that are contributing radiation data to this map as you read this, and watch the numbers on those monitoring stations update as frequently as every 3 minutes (your browser will automatically refresh).

The numbers represent radiation Counts per Minute, abbreviated CPM, and under normal conditions, quantify the level of background radiation, i.e. environmental radiation from outer space as well as from the earth’s crust and air. Depending on your location within the US, your elevation or altitude, and your model of Geiger counter, this background radiation level might average anywhere from 5 to 60 CPM, and while background radiation levels are random, it would be unusual for those levels to exceed 130 CPM.

Thus, the “Alert Level” for the National Radiation Map is 130 CPM, so if you see any Monitoring Stations with CPM value above 130, further indicated by an Alert symbol over those stations, it probably means that some radioactive source above and beyond background radiation is responsible.

(Please note: Any White circles on the map represent Monitoring Stations that are running Simulations, (that is, not using a real Geiger counter) so any Alert levels that may occur over those stations are to be ignored since they represent only momentary testing.)

How to Participate in the Nationwide Radiation Network:
If you want to join this nationwide grass roots effort to monitor the radiation in our environment, then this is all you need:
Digital Geiger Counter (See models below)
GeigerGraph Software and Data Cable
Computer with Windows Operating System
Internet Access (Direct connection preferred)

In fact, if you become an active participant in this network (instead of just a passive viewer of this website), the GeigerGraph software that you use will incorporate the same Radiation Map as above, but your map will be fully interactive, with zoom capabilities, descriptions of Nuclear Sites and Monitoring Stations, additional Map Layers, including Counties, Airports, Roads, Railroads, Lakes and Rivers, and even the capability to download City Streets for your county. Plus, in keeping with the elements of a true Network, the GeigerGraph software has its own Chat forum.

Compatible Geiger Counter Models:
The Geiger
Monitor 4 (yr 2008 redesign)
Radalert 50 and Radalert 100
Digilert 50 and Digilert 100
Inspector EXP

Most of these models, as well as the GeigerGraph for Networks software, are available at GeigerCounters.com, a web site operated by Mineralab. Click on the text hyperlinks in the previous sentence to go there. You can also contact us here:

Mineralab, LLC
2860 W. Live Oak Drive,
 Prescott, AZ 86305 USA
Phone:   (800) 749-3766, or (928) 442-1155
Fax:        (928) 442-1188
Email:    minlab@mineralab.com

Disclaimer: Mineralab, LLC, the operator of this web site, cannot independently verify that the Radiation Levels, or any Radiation Alerts, that are displayed on this Radiation Map are correct and valid. Among other possibilities, Geiger counter malfunctions or proximity of the counters to certain medical procedures or to radioactive items can cause high readings at a Monitoring Station. If the Radiation Map appears to show elevated Radiation levels, contact Mineralab.