gas leaks: a hidden culprit for dead treeswolf: budget framework in “deep peril”

by:CTECHi     2019-12-28
Street trees are particularly vulnerable to pests, diseases and water scarcity.
But it turns out that a hidden culprit could also be killing trees. gas leaks.
Most people who work at gas companies know this, but when you want to sniff out a leak check of dead or dead vegetation, the rest of us don\'t know.
The evidence in this regard can be traced back to the medium term
In the year 00 s, when naturalists recorded the connection between street lights and dying trees, said Nathan Phillips, a tree scientist and professor at Boston University.
\"The most likely reason is that there is mostly lack of oxygen,\" Phillips said . \".
\"The roots need oxygen to grow and maintain, and there is no oxygen in natural gas.
\"But tree lovers are comforted by the fact that at least one man has made it his mission to save trees from gas leaks.
\"I call him an urban naturalist because he understands the visible indicators of what\'s going on underground,\" Phillips said . \".
His name is Bob akley, who drives me all the way from Boston to my own community tour.
\"This is my first trip to Philadelphia and I \'ve never had a cheese steak,\" said akley . \" When I met him in the historic district of Philadelphia, opposite the Constitutional Center.
For 35 years, Ackley has worked for the gas industry to conduct leak investigations for utilities on the East Coast.
But he was bored and decided to change his attention.
He is now a consultant to municipalities trying to save trees from methane poisoning.
\"At the end of the day, the test pipes are becoming more and more common, with tree problems, and not many people know,\" he said . \".
He\'s right. I contacted the Penn Garden Association and the United States. S.
Forest Service, I don\'t know who I talked.
I also called Joan Brustein, who is in charge of the walking tree in Philadelphia\'s parks and entertainment department.
Blaustein knew that methane would kill a tree over time, but she did not link thousands of small methane leaks in the city to the health of street trees. \"We haven\'t
She points out that this is a special issue, \"she said,\" but when we try to make sure we keep the trees as long as we can, it\'s something we can add to the mixture.
\"Like many cities now, Philadelphia wants to keep its canopy.
Blaustein said it is estimated that there are 130,000 trees in the city.
Philadelphia grows 1000 to 3000 new trees a year.
Each price is between four and six. Hundred dollars
Most of the city\'s trees died from old age, says Blaustein.
But other things will kill them too, like disease, pests, storms, and water scarcity.
Bob Ackley wants more people like Blaustein to focus on leaks in the city\'s gas pipeline.
Akley parked his car in front of the National Constitutional Center with a blindfold.
He also worked as a gas safety consultant, so he put on his helmet, yellow vest and safety glasses.
He said he wanted to look formal in the traffic jam.
Cars often whistle at him.
\"Don\'t worry that he won\'t knock me down,\" he comforted . \".
His car is equipped with a rearview mirror with tape.
But inside, he showed me some very complicated equipment.
\"We have Piccaro analyzer with vacuum pump, GPS Analyzer, a 110 battery power supply, it is basically a cavity ring --
There is a laptop inside the splitter that looks like a traditional desktop computer.
All of this is connected together with a timestamp, GPS stamp and a methane stamp for every billion minutes.
\"He also has a more traditional flame ionization device that tracks methane leaks.
He likes to check his work with two systems.
He began reading just before the Constitutional Center.
He said: \"Just in this place, we have a tree dead, two trees dead, the third tree is weak, the fourth tree is weak, we don\'t know the other tree.
\"As gas leaks continue along this cast iron body.
The culprit here is cast iron.
Philadelphia has about 1500 miles of cast iron pipes that run under the streets and are connected to buildings.
Some are installed before 100, and they leak gas.
In fact, the city has some of the country\'s most leaking gas pipelines.
Philadelphia gas plants have been replacing them with plastic pipes.
But it\'s expensive and takes time.
The current estimate is that it will take about 80 years, but this may accelerate if the Public Utilities Commission approves a rate hike.
Some leaks are very large and dangerous and can be repaired soon, especially if there is a danger of explosion.
The others are very small. although they are harmful to trees, they are not a threat to human beings.
As a result, hundreds of small bugs are not high on the repair list.
\"These combined leaks will not blow up your house, but will kill your trees,\" akley said . \".
The akley car was designed to detect a methane leak when he was driving.
When he started working for the gas company, he was taught to look for vegetation that died or died in order to sniff out the leak.
He didn\'t even have to get off the bus today, so we started driving.
\"So when we look at the street here, we can see yellow paint marks, and an 8-
Run down the inch main from here.
Akley says most of his work is visual.
Utility workers have an on-the-ground code that tells them what is buried underground.
All these colors
Coding paint marks sprayed on sidewalks and roads with initials and numbers make sense.
Yellow mark of gas pipeline, 8 fingers 8-
The tube and CI in inch diameter are cast iron.
He also looks for trees with sparse canopy, or trees with no leaves at all.
If they lie down in a row along the gas pipeline, it is likely that there will be a leak that will cause the trees to die, he said.
\"You can see here that there is a small round hole in the street, there is a patch, and there is a series of holes that are drilled, and this is where they are leaking,\" he said.
The device began buzzing to detect nearby leaks.
\"We got instructions for 2036, 2045, this is bang, OK?
\"But because not all trees die from methane poisoning, he wants to go into the soil and test the methane content in the roots, which is where the danger lies.
Akley came out of the car and took out a long and thin pole with a pin at the end of the pole, start drilling a small hole next to a dying tree in front of the old Quaker conference room on 5 and Arch Street.
\"Well, that should make the gas read here.
He then puts a fine hose into the hole, which is attached to the device that sucks air, and gives him a gas reading, and he calls it out.
\"There are 500 40,000 on the ground a few feet from the tree, which is all in the root area, and that\'s why it killed the tree,\" he said . \".
Even if the culprit is disease, insect, or storm damage, methane may have weakened the tree, which takes away oxygen from the roots and dries the soil, akley said.
Basically, the tree can\'t breathe, it will get weaker and die in the end.
He also wanted to see how much oxygen was in the soil and he could measure it with the same machine.
\"What should be the level of oxygen we breathe now? ” he asks.
Sadly, I don\'t know.
\"19 to 20 years old
1% or you will die . \"
\"The air on the ground has the same properties as the air on the ground.
This is about 21% of oxygen, 78% of nitrogen, less than 1% of oxygen and carbon dioxide, and water vapor.
The oxygen content in the soil should be the same.
So this is what the trees need.
He measured it. “1.
Oxygen 4%. \"He said.
Too bad.
\"Well, the tree is dead,\" he said.
\"There is no doubt that there are other things that kill trees.
But when you have gas near a tree, you either have a sick tree, or a weak tree, or a dead tree, or no tree.
Tree tenders should be encouraged to pay more attention to gas leaks, he said.
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