Mountain Views News     Logo: MVNews     Saturday, July 11, 2015

MVNews this week:  Page B:6

Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 11, 2015 
Mountain Views-News Saturday, July 11, 2015 
Almost 2,000 exoplanets have been discovered todate, ranging from rocky Earth-like planets to hotJupiters, and orbiting every type of star. But howmany of these distant worlds are habitable? Today’stechnology means that we currently have very littleinformation about what exoplanets are like beyondtheir presence, size and distance from star. With thelaunch of the James Webb Space Telescope (JWST,, we may have our firstglimpses into atmospheres of Earth-like exoplanets,
according to the results of a study by Dr. JoannaBarstow, presented at the British National AstronomyMeeting in Llandudno, Wales, UK, on Wednesday,
July 8.

“A planet’s atmosphere provides a good guide tolikely conditions on the surface,” said Barstow, ofthe University of Oxford. “The Earth’s atmospherecontains significant amounts of nitrogen, oxygen,
ozone and water. By contrast, its inhospitable ‘eviltwin,’ Venus, has an atmosphere made mostly ofcarbon dioxide, which drives its surface temperatureto a blistering 450 degrees Celsius.”

A successor to the Hubble Space Telescope, JWSTis due for launch in 2018 and will study the universein infrared wavelengths. Barstow’s study shows thatJWST may be able to differentiate between a planetwith a clement, Earth-like atmosphere, and onewith more hostile conditions such as are found on 
our neighboring planet Venus. JWST will have thecapability to detect key markers that could indicatethe presence of a climate like our own when lookingat Earth-size planets around stars that are smaller andredder than our Sun. 

Different gases have already been identifiedsuccessfully in the atmospheres of several large, hot,
Jupiter-size planets by studying tiny variations in thestarlight that passes through their atmospheres whenthey cross in front of their parent stars. However, thesevariations are minuscule: the light filtered throughthe exoplanet’s atmosphere is one ten-thousandth ofthe total starlight detected. Studying planets the sizeof the Earth is an even greater challenge. AlthoughJWST would struggle with analyzing a solar systemexactly like our own, it would be capable of studyingEarth-like planets around cooler stars—if such a 
system were to be found.

“If we took the Earth and Venus, and placed themin orbit around a cool, red star that’s not too far away,
our study shows that JWST could tell them apart.
Earth’s ozone layer, 10 kilometers above the surface,
is produced when light from the Sun interactswith molecules of oxygen in our atmosphere, andit produces an unmistakable signal that could be 

detected by JWST. Venus, without a substantial ozonelayer, would look very different,” said Barstow. “That’sassuming that planets starting out like Earth andVenus would evolve in the same way around a coolstar!” 

However, JWST will be used for a wide rangeof astronomical applications, not just detectingexoplanets, and securing time on the telescope willbe highly competitive. To make these detections,
astronomers would need to observe the exoplanets atleast 30 times, taking valuable telescope time.

“Future telescopes that are dedicated to observingthe atmospheres of many rocky planets around 
different stars will be required to fully resolvethe question of habitability on exoplanets. In themeantime, JWST will observe many other weirdand wonderful planets in unprecedented detail,” saidBarstow. 

You can contact Bob Eklund at: b.eklund@ 


By Christopher Nyergeshas bad bacteria. I believe it’s because the water here is 

 [Nyerges is the author ofvery high in minerals and calcium, etc. And it’s those

“How to Survive Anywhere,”minerals that might cause sickness if you’re not used to

and other books. He has led it,” explained Julia.

survival skills classes since I asked Julia about the people living in all the small

1974. He can be reached at villages where they could not afford to buy water. “I

www.SchoolofSelf-Reliance. don’t know what they do,” responded Julia.

com or Box 41834, Eagle “However,” added Julia, “I’ve been told that in 20 
Rock, CA 90041.]years or so, you won’t be able to drink the water in the

I’ve heard it so long that it sounds like some religious Yucatan region because it will be so polluted.” Julia 
mantra: “Don’t drink the water in pointed out that all the water in YucatanMexico.” comes from underground, and that

The meaning is that a visitor tothe soil is very porous. She adds 
Mexico should not drink the water that everyone uses septic systems inuntreated. And why is that? Yucatan, and there is no sewer 
One explanation that I system (like in most parts ofused to hear back in the the U.S.) where the waste1970s when I first visited 

water is treated before it 
Mexico was that, while 

is discharged into the soil 
every place has its own

or water. Although thebacteria and organisms

local politicians all talkin their water, one will 

about installing a sewerget used to the organisms

system after each flood,
in their water after a 

Julia doesn’t think that 
while. And supposedly, 

will ever happen becausethis also meant that 

of the immensity of suchnative Mexicans could a project. 
drink their municipal “Because the 
tap from the water soil is so porous, whenwithout concern. When chemicals are used, 
I went to language they go directly into theschool in Mexico, 

ground water,” she says.
I always boiled my

“So, because there is no 
water or added water 

sewer system, there ispurification tablet 

flooding after every major 
to the tap water, or storm, and everyone 
purchased bottled water. blames the mayor and 
Back then, I never thoughtthey elect a new mayor whoabout asking native Mexicans ifmakes new promises, and then itthey drank their water out of the tap.rains again and floods again because

A light-colored tinaco. 

More recently, having visited nothing was done.”
the Yucatan region several times, I asked some ofI concluded that it was a good thing for me to buythe natives about this. These days bottled water ismy water, or purify it, whenever I travel. And it’s 
everywhere, and most of the people whose homes Inot wise to judge the water of such as large countrystayed in purchased all their water and did not drinkas Mexico with one yardstick because the “waterfrom the tap. When I asked whether or not they’dsituation” of any country is vastly more complex thanget sick by drinking water out of their tap withoutwhat I’ve presented here. Unfortunately, we should bepurifying it, they shrugged and said they didn’t know.suspect of most tap water and most open sources ofThey buy their water.water, wherever we are. 

Finally, I met someone who seemed to know a I asked Julia about the black tanks on nearlything about the Mexican water situation. I asked Julia, everyone’s roof in most parts of Mexico. “Those arewho was an American who married a Mexican man called tinacos,” Julia told me, which my dictionary toldand now calls the Yucatan region her home where sheme simply means “water tank.”
and her husband run a farm. In the United States, people often let their water

“Do you drink from the tap directly?” I asked a bit so it starts to cool off. However, due to the 

“No, though I’m not afraid to,” she responded. “Iflack of pressurized water in Mexico, most homesI’m out in the fields and I’m thirsty, I will drink fromand buildings have large water tanks – tinacos – onthe hose and I don’t get sick. But usually, we buytheir roofs. These then deliver the water by gravity aspurified and filtered water and they deliver it to ourneeded. But since these are traditionally black, thehome.” coolest water comes out first and then the water gets

Julia went on to explain that the tap water is usedhotter as you let the tap run because the water wasdirectly for washing, brushing teeth, irrigation, etc.heated by the sun. Now you can find tinacos white or

“When people say not to drink the water in Meridalight-colored so that the water is not heated so much by(Yucatan), I don’t believe the reason is that the water the sun. 


A Weekly Religion Column by Rev. James Snyder 


Summer is my favorite time of the year. It makes Another important thing in my baggage 
up for the nastiness of winter, the cold and the for vacation is my non-vegetable diet. I know 
gloom, not to mention the snow. The only place I vegetables are good for you, but please, on my 
like my snow is on a postcard sent by some family vacation this is the one thing I am vacating.
member up North where they have all the kind When I sit down at a meal on my vacation, I do 
of stuff. not want to see any vegetables or anything green 

My love affair with summer began when I or leafy on my plate. I want my plate piled high 
was in school. I know school is supposed to be with apple pie à la mode, chocolate cake topped 
a great time and it was for me except for those with a scoop of ice cream, and for dessert, a bowl 
classes where the teachers were trying to teach me of ice cream topped with a scoop of ice cream, and 
something. They had their work cut out with not be stingy with the chocolate fudge.

School was rather boring, but then, Summer Of course, after such a lunch I am feeling a little 
came and set all the prisoners free, me being one woozy and need to go back to my room and sleep 
of them. Since that time, I have always appreciated it off. This is carefully planned on my part. After 
the good nature of Summer and have celebrated it every lunch, my vacation companion has this 
as enthusiastically as possible.uncontrollable desire to visit thrift shops. She can 

Now that summer is here, the Gracious Mistress smell a thrift shop 25 miles away. You can imagine 
of the Parsonage and me are planning to take a how someone as lazy as me is not too interested in 
wee bit of vacation. It is not often that we can pack visiting all of these stores during vacation. It has 
up our bags and ”get out of Dodge.” When we do, something to do with my drug problem. I do not 
it is a very special being drug from one thrift shop to another all 

When it comes to vacations, my wife and I are afternoon. 
at opposite ends of what a vacation is all about. Then there is my Sun Sponge attitude that soaks 
As soon as we mention the word ”vacation,” I am up all the sun available. When I come back from 
ready to go. Not so with the better half. She has all my vacation, I want to have a sunny glow about 
kinds of planning and preparation work to do and me that lasts for weeks. 
it takes more work for her to plan our vacation This is where the art of laziness is quite handy. 
than it does to stay home and just work.In order to get as much sun as possible you have 

My part of the planning is to stay out of her to be able to do as little as possible. Sitting out in 
way! I learned this a long time ago and have the the sun with nothing to do is the best posture for 
scars to prove it.soaking up the sun.

Some people believe that women are masters at So, here I am, sitting all packed and ready to go, 
multitasking. My wife is the queen. I, on the other while the wife is making sure she has everything 
hand, am a master at anti-tasking. My wife can packed she needs. I could go on vacation on a 
juggle four or five different jobs at the same time scooter while she needs a U-Haul. 
while I can do nothing at the same time. It’s a gift No matter who you are, vacation is a time 
on my part.for rest and I suppose everybody has their own 

For vacation, I only need three things, which definition of rest. 
makes my vacation the wonder and joy that it The Bible speaks of ”rest” around 380 times. 
always is.Most people have not caught this idea.

The first thing I pack for vacation is my My favorite verse is, ”Rest in the LORD, and 
incorrigible laziness. I am not boasting, mind wait patiently for him: fret not thyself because 
you, but I have mastered the art of laziness like of him who prospereth in his way, because of 
nobody you know. In fact, if I was not so lazy, I the man who bringeth wicked devices to pass” 
would do several workshops on Mastering the Art (Psalms 37:7).
of Laziness. I have a Master’s degree in laziness It is easy to get all caught up with the activities 
and if I was not so lazy, I would prepare a diploma of the world around, but it takes a lot of discipline 
to hang on the really ”rest in the Lord.” 

Some people go on vacation to do all kinds of 
things and get involved in all kinds of activities; I Rev. James L. Snyder is pastor of the Family 
go to work on my laziness.of God Fellowship, PO Box 831313, Ocala, FL 

My wife has a little bit of trouble with this. She 34483. He lives with his wife, Martha, in Silver 
is the Queen Bee when it comes to busyness and Springs Shores. Call him at 1-866-552-2543 or 
is buzzing all the time. I am the honey that flows e-mail or website www. 
rather slowly.