Charter to End Extreme Hunger: New Hope Against Famine

By JLBane

New York is set to host a meeting of world leaders on Saturday (24th September, 2011) where they will sign the “Charter to End Extreme Hunger”.

 

Amongst the names on the list will be Kenya’s premier Raila Odinga and Live Aid/Live 8 organiser, Bob Geldof, as well as United Nations’ Valerie Amos.

 

The new incentive comes at a time when East Africa is facing a huge famine problem and over 13 million people are currently starving. Unlike the 1980s when the media covered this kind of tragedy on a massive scale, this current famine has been largely ignored by the major news outlets.

Raila Odinga will meet with a host of big names in New York to sign the Charter to End Exreme hunger.

 

Geldof is of course a veteran and although his previous aid ventures raised a lot of money for their causes (estimated at $60bn since 1984), only a fraction of that money ever reached the affected areas, while record sales of the musicians involved soared as high as 300% in the immediate aftermath.

 

The real enemy in any case of famine is poverty. There isn’t a lack of food in the world and the claims by GM food producing companies that their supposedly superior yields will lead to the end of world hunger is looking like egg on their faces in the guise of false advertising and marketing to justify producing chemicalised, unhealthy food.

Bob Geldof has raised incredible sums of money to aid starving people, but where has most of it gone?

Read about GM food and diminishing choices for consumers.

 

This new charter, which was drafted by several aid agencies and civil charity groups, outlines five steps which need to be taken when facing a famine and they are as follows:

  • Respond early
    The East African crisis was predicted several months in advance, but was ignored by governments. In future they must act immediately.
  • Support local food production
    This is something which must take place all over the world as it provides local employment and is safer for the environment. It also helps people develop skills and self-sufficiency.
  • Making food affordable
    Rises in oil prices have had a knock on effect with food which has risen by 20% in the past few years, data which contradicts claims by food companies who support GM crop growth. Food must be made cheaper.
  • Protect the poorest and most vulnerable
    Funding for schools, clean water and localised farming will provide people with the tools to build sustainable communities and develop personal skills.
  • Reduce armed conflict
    Violence is a major hindrance to aid reaching its destination so governments must make provisions for better acces in conflict zones, as well as improve diplomacy skills to reach a peaceful conclusion.
Drought in East Africa is putting between 13 and 20 million lives at risk.

I hope the Charter to End Extreme Hunger does its job and that all the aid reaches the people who need it the most, not just a portion of it while the rest is absorbed by unscrupulous charities who absorb so much of it in ‘admin costs’.

Please share your thoughts on the Charter to End Extreme Hunger by leaving a comment or share this article using the social media buttons.

images: economist.com, techdigest.tv, sharpishkane.blogspot.com, klubffi.com, treehugger.com

 

Chemtrails: Our skies are changing

 

Chemtrails

 

By JLBane

 

I’ve been aware of changes taking place above my head for about a year now. Indeed in that time I have travelled through no less than 14 European countries and in every one I have been greeted by chemtrails.

Like most people I was ignorant to their existence but the more I noticed them the more curious I became about what they were.

Chemtrails are a form of emission left by planes which have the appearance of passenger jets. They leave in their wake a thick trail which looks like normal exhaust vapour from the engines (contrails). Contrails last for no longer than a minute or so before evaporating, whereas chemtrails hang in the air and fan outwards creating streaks across the sky. They can last for several hours and are generally seen in criss-cross patterns above major population centres.

Chemtrails

After being sprayed from a plane like an aerosol, Chemtrails fan out over the sky and slowly descend.

 

There are some obvious questions which must be asked:

Who is responsible for administering these chemtrails?

That is a difficult one to answer properly but there have been reports about them since the 1950s and in 1997, after it was deemed legal to spray the masses with them, they appeared in every country except China, Brazil and a few other central American locations. Such a huge scale, worldwide operation would lead to the conclusion that an international corporation or government coalitions are behind it.

What do chemtrails contain and what are they doing to us?

It is possible to find this out for yourself by leaving an ordinary coffee filter outside on days when chemtrails appear and getting the contents examined at a local laboratory. So far professional scientific analysis has discovered that they contain:

  • Aluminium oxide – an extremely poisonous heavy metal which is used as a scalar wave reflector.
  • Barium oxide – another poisonous metal used to reflect mind altering scalar waves.
  • Bio Nano-particles – which help distribute scalar waves once they enter the human body.
  • Synthetic polymers – do a similar job to Bio Nano-particles as well as help the chemical cocktail hang in the air.
  • Ethylene dibromide – is considered one of the deadliest toxins as it strips the body of iodine which diminishes our immune system and disrupts our critical thought processes. It is also found in fire retardants and more worryingly in soft drinks like Mountain Dew and Gatorade. It is outlawed in every country except the United States and one other.
  • Other more arbitrary elements discovered in various chemtrail tests have turned up fungi, dehydrated blood cells, thorium, radioactive thorine and Morgellons Disease.

Looking at that list it’s impossible to dismiss the harm they are doing to us, especially when combined with Scalar wave technology such as is being used through systems like the HAARP installation at Gakona in Alaska and even your television sets at home.

Morgellons disease is caused by a tiny parasite. Morgellons have been found in chemtrails.

Morgellons disease is caused by a tiny parasite. Morgellons have been found in chemtrails.

 

There are some things we can do to minimize the risks chemtrails pose us such as eating a healthy diet that excludes junk food and is supplemented by things like Colloidal Oxygenated Silver; Illumodine to combat Ethylene dibromide; Zeolite which helps cleanse the body of toxins in the bloodstream and Clinoptilolite which purges the intestines of toxins.

The chemtrail threat is a throwback to the Nazis using fluoride in water supplies at concentration camps which dulled the senses of the prisoners and made them utterly compliant. Chemtrails are a more sophisticated version of that type of anti-immunity and mind control. By dulling us down we become more compliant and less able to rebel or speak out against issues which concern us.

Stick to organic food, avoid junk and try to keep a healthy mind by reading, steering clear of pointless television and meditating for 15-20 minutes per day. Your mind is your greatest weapon – keep it sharp and the body will follow.

Please share your thoughts on chemtrails by leaving a comment.

 

Oil Industry Propaganda and Peak Oil

The world after peak oil could be a harsh place to exist

By JLBane

I have for a long time been of the opinion that there is a conspiracy involving oil production and consumption the companies at the heart of which are doing their utmost to keep a secret. I’m not a conspiracy theorist by any means, but the evidence to support my beliefs is out there and readily available.

 

The trouble is that we live in a world which is governed by those with money and the oil companies are probably the richest about. This gives them a dangerous level of influence over the motor, plastics, pharmaceutical and logistics industries along with our good friends in the media.

 

And it is in the media playground that most of the damage is done. Not enough people question what they’re told by the likeable, friend-down-the-street newsreaders and why should they? Surely those lovely, familiar people dispensing the news from their familiar desks wouldn’t lie to us? They’ve been our family friends for decades…

 

Peak Oil: Media Manipulation

 

 

Deep Horizon in its final stricken moments

The Deep Horizon oil disaster has had a devastating impact on the environment.

A great example of how oil companies manipulate the media occurred last year during the Deep Horizon spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Millions of gallons of oil were pumped into the sea as the result of an explosion on board a deep water rig meaning that the well head was uncapped and free to spew raw, crude oil into the sea at a devastating rate.

 

Thousands of people were affected by the spill; families losing their age-old fishing businesses and homes, as well as gas prices rising all over the country.

 

Animal life was decimated with deep sea life unable to survive and surface feeders suffering because the chain was broken.

 

One of the worst victims was the Global Conveyor Belt which carries thermal convections on currents around the planet, pulls valuable minerals from deep water as cooling surface water sinks and pushes deep water to the surface, and most importantly of all, keeps continents like Europe from becoming glacial masses. The damage has been noticeable this past year with lower temperatures and monsoon-style rain storms wreaking havoc in Britain and France.

 

 

The BP oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico

BP's massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico is still causing problems with the global climate and wildlife.

BP who own the Deep Horizon rig and who are responsible for the spill used the media to try and cover up the disaster at first, then, when that wasn’t washing with the public they tried to play down the scale of the problem with propagandist broadcasts and press releases which diverted our attention away from the real issue.

 

According to my observations they were largely successful and only a handful of people (relatively speaking) still campaign for them to be brought to justice. Sadly BP were ‘backed’ by US congress and as yet no punitive measures of any lasting or meaningful purpose have been imposed. Any fines were, for want of a better analogy, a drop in the ocean to one of the richest companies in the world.

 

BP got away with it.

 

Peak Oil: The Truth is Out There

 

Watching excellent documentaries like The End of Suburbia, Gas Hole and reading books like Richard Heinberg’s The Party’s Over: Oil, War and the Fate of Industrial Societies have done nothing to persuade me that peak oil isn’t happening and I have watched fuel prices with great interest for the past few years.

 

Diesel used to be the cheapest fuel after unleaded petrol but with the advent of higher performance diesel engines for mass produced cars the price rocketed and is now actually more expensive than petrol. But the dramatic rise in price of a fuel which cost only two thirds the price of the less economical petroleum only a few years ago still doesn’t seem to have set alarm bells ringing with consumers.

 

Blame it on wars and national debt or just about anything you can think of but the fact of the matter is simple; while consumers are happy to pay, the oil companies are happy to hike the prices for no particular reason other than greed.

 

 

Axon have developed a 100mpg car.

Consumer pressure is the only way to force companies into making 100mpg cars like Axon's prototype.

Given that independent mechanics and engineers have found ways to get over 100 miles per gallon of petrol, and we’re talking about men who tinkered in their home garages in the 1960s and 70s, surely the motor industry could develop an engine that produces comparable figures. This is true, they could, but what’s the incentive? The oil industry has a grip on motor manufacturers and they call the shots. We’re seeing modern cars and vans with better performance (faster, smaller engines) but with the same fuel consumption figures as economy cars which are five or ten years old.

 

So, what the car manufacturers are doing is making the consumer feel slightly happier while keeping the oil companies sweet because they cash in on the consumers’ need for their product while still producing enough to maintain a powerful cash flow and web of influence.

 

Peak Oil: Media Momentum

 

Al Jazeera English today released an article called The Scourge of Peak Oil which discusses the subject as if it was something new. Al Jazeera is one of the few major news groups that I trust yet their late show for the peak oil party has raised a few questions.

 

There is no doubt that when the major companies can no longer hide their production inadequacies there will be massive coverage in the media, but articles such as Al Jazeera‘s make me think that we’re perhaps about to see a steady influx of related material pointing towards the end of cheap oil (peak oil).

 

 

Saudi Arabia is one of the biggest oil producers

Many believe we're already on the downward slope of the bell curve and the future is not looking good.

As long as there are countries like Saudi Arabia, Iraq, Afghanistan and Libya producing good quantities of oil there won’t be too much of a panic but when they start to dry up due to more cars on the roads, more food being shipped worldwide, more flights at cheaper prices, more automated food production and industry, more people needing more medicines and plastic consumables, there will be social unrest on an unprecedented scale. You only have to go back a few years to see what one or two days of fuel deprivation does to society.

 

Is it a coincidence that wars have erupted in all of those countries in the past decade? Another time for that discussion, perhaps.

 

In the meantime, we need to address our own fuel usage and bear in mind that the food we eat is produced in a factory hundreds if not thousands of miles away, is then frozen or refrigerated, shipped in a fleet of huge container lorries and often overseas where it is then carried by another fleet of lorries to your local store where it lives on a refrigerated shelf or in a cooler cabinet – all of which requires oil products.

 

We also need to remember that many of our homes are powered by coal or oil generators, both of which require oil products to build and maintain, to ship the coal or oil and even to extract said fuels and refine them.

 

For now, think about what you’ve read here and do some digging for yourself, but most of all, keep watching the prices on those fuel pumps and see for yourself how quickly the rug is being pulled from under our feet.


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images: treehugger.comknoltoday.com, carbonfibergear.com, doobybrain.com, whsword.wordpress.com

Living with tornadoes in the southern states thanks to climate change

By JLBane

Having experienced first-hand the sheer power and ferocity of hurricanes, tornadoes and water spouts I have more than a little sympathy for the people of Alabama and Arkansas; regions among others which have been battered by extreme weather conditions in the past few days.

Recent months have seen aberrant weather conditions in that region claim more than 500 lives with an estimated 1500 still unaccounted for. Worst hit areas yesterday include the town of Denny, Arkansas which by all accounts has been levelled and three people are known to have died.

Arkansas, Mississippi, Georgia, Alabama, Texas and Louisiana all meet the Gulf of Mexico, a huge oceanic basin which has been severely affected by the recent Deep Horizon oil spill caused by an explosion on the BP rig. The clean up job is still ongoing but the local eco-system has been decimated and a vital part of the planet’s heating and cooling system, the Global Conveyor Belt, has been adversely affected too. Due to the amount of oil and so-called ‘dispersants’ remaining in the water, the ocean’s convection carriers are unable to do their jobs properly meaning that the cold waters which usually flow down from Alaska are not reaching the Gulf and as a result the entire area is warmer than it would normally be.

It is no coincidence that we are seeing an increase in tornados and aberrant weather conditions after the Gulf of Mexico spill and the regions affected are sat right on top of that disaster.

Deep Horizon, the BP oil spill has had a far reaching impact on the Gulf of Mexico.

Climate change could well be playing its part too with a recorded increase in temperatures since 1980. Indeed between 1980 and 1998 the global temperature rose by 0.5 degrees celcius as confirmed by the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the UK’s Met Office and the IPCC.

Doesn’t sound like much but its effect on the environment is enough to cause the kind of crazy weather we’ve regularly seen over the past few decades. The predicted rise of a further 1.5 degrees by 2050 would mean these conditions becoming the norm.

I remember all too well the night I was woken by a water spout on the south coast of England. We lived opposite the beach in a small fishing village and in the early hours of an Autumn night in 1985 my house was pummeled by a wall of water. I looked out of the window with an exhilaration born of fascination and sheer terror to catch the most fleeting glimpse of a black spout crossing the sea heading inland towards the bottom end of my street. The spray it generated lashed windows and doused houses in its briney fury and the noise of that squall against the glass was like artillery hammering out shells on the front lines.

The next morning we awoke to the news of houses no more than a few hundred metres from my own being flattened and the community began a clear up and rebuild. Luckily there were no casualties but our little village was shaken by the storm, long after it had cleared.

Two years later in October 1987 we were subject to a devastating hurricane which tore across the coast with scant regard for anything it touched. We were evacuated from our homes in the early hours of the morning as a precaution and upon arrival at the village hall we were welcomed by the rest of the coastal community.

I can’t describe what the hurricane looked like as I was inside the whole time, but the sounds of roof slates, litter, fence panels and tree limbs smashing against our temporary refuge were enough to tell us that we were not safe beyond those walls, and many questioned whether we were any safer inside.

The one good thing to come from these incidents was the community spirit which got us all through those harrowing nights and the subsequent weeks and months of recovery.

The morning after the hurricane I wandered the streets in the stillness and calm. My small world had been transformed into a post-apocalyptic nightmare, strewn with victims and wreckage. Every trace of damage had its own sad story to tell.

I saw the corpses of birds; majestic seagulls that only a day earlier had graced the sky and skimmed the sea. Once-houses lay in rubble and cars were smashed and folded like waste paper, such was the force of the hurricane. Trees that had stood for decades and witnessed generations of children grow and move on were uprooted and left shattered across streets or plunged through walls and roofs.

The most striking thing was the silence. After the raging winds and chaotic claxons of debris chiming against brick and metal of a few hours past, the morning stillness was almost unnerving. There was a sense of calm but also an ominous reminder that we had somehow survived the onslaught of nature.

Years later we were still remembered for our hurricane and the local Indian restaurant even changed its name to reflect that.

I know what it’s like to live through these weather conditions and my heart and thoughts go out to the people in those southern states whose lives will be in turmoil after the devastating weather that has battered the northern coast of the Gulf of Mexico this year.

Please share your thoughts on the matter of these aberrant weather conditions or climate change by leaving a comment.

Read about the climate change blame game; NAWAPA‘s proposal to ship water from Alaska and its impact on the Global Conveyor Belt, and tips to conserve clean water.

images: feelfree.co; treehugger.com; columbiaweather.com

The curse of vegetarianism

By Arty Spoon

When ‘ordinary’ people find out I’m a raw vegan they generally cannot wait to pick massive great holes in my reasoning for following this edible path. First off, they assume that all I eat is fruit salad and sushi. Despite more than 50% of the phrase ‘raw vegan’ consisting of the word ‘vegan’.

These normal folk think I am some kind of freak of nature because I eat natural uncooked foods that have been processed as little as possible. They sit, often smugly behind their overcooked burger made from cow’s eyeballs, eyelids, bumhole and genitals, and their sesame seed bun made from white flour and a disturbing cocktail of sinister chemicals and sugar, and they stab holes in my argument with invisible sanctimonious pencils.

Some people wave meat beneath my nose, like I might suddenly be overcome with murderous tendencies and wrestle them to the ground to devour the contents of their fist, and, what the hell, the fist itself, like the carnivores they think us humans naturally are.

They are like addicts who become disgruntled when a fellow smoker, drinker, drug user or gamer quits and gets clean. They’re dying to drag you back in, back into the clammy clutches of shared addiction, so that they don’t have to feel bad about what they are doing. Because ‘then we’re all doing it’, right?

Reasons humans aren't designed to eat meat. Our teeth make terrible meat slicers and our stomachs don't digest meat well at all.

I can come up with a hundred reasons why I don’t think humans are biologically predisposed to eat meat, and if you hunt around on the internet, you can find another hundred reasons countering my arguments. I don’t personally believe that human beings are supposed to eat meat, certainly not in the quantities and formations that it is consumed as part of the standard American diet.

Now despite being a raw vegan, sometimes I will do something really heinous, like eat something that isn’t raw, such as a biscuit or a potato chip, and I often hear an incredulous: ‘Are you allowed to eat that?!’ ‘That’s not raw!’

Well really, if I sit and eat a piece of cake that gives my ass the appearance of a chesterfield sofa, or a bag of potato chips that contribute to cancer, that’s entirely up to me. It is my health I’m risking. So, I generally reply that I’m allowed to eat anything I want. If a smoker refuses a cigarette, people don’t suddenly exclaim ‘But I thought you smoked!?’

I once met a vegan yoga teacher, who was the healthiest looking individual I’ve ever met. He drank green vegetable juices for breakfast every day and practised yoga for a couple of hours each morning. He meditated, drank adequate water, got enough sunshine… did everything right. Then one day I ran into him on a beach and he was drinking a can of coke and smoking a Marlborough Red. ‘Sometimes, I just feel like a can of coke and a cigarette’, he said. I loved that attitude.

Vegans are almost regarded in the same way as lepers in some quarters.

It seems that being a vegetarian or even worse, not to mention heaven forbid, a vegan, you may as well have a large scabby ‘L for leper’ gauged upon your forehead. I used to get the same reaction to people when I was an advocator of women’s rights. ‘Urrrgh! You’re not one of those feminists are you?’ No way. The last thing I’d ever want is equal rights for myself. You wouldn’t say ‘you’re not antiracist are you?!’ to a black guy, like it’s a totally absurd notion.

Many people almost seem to take offense that you might want to conduct a life that avoids animals suffering. As if by doing so, you think you are somehow better than them, or might suddenly describe what goes on in the average slaughterhouse in minute detail, thereby ‘putting them off their dinner’.

Admittedly, I used to be quite an aggressive animal rights warrior, I was incensed and upset by their treatment and people’s wilful ignorance of the conditions they exist in, but now I realise that many people are just misinformed, confused, or happily ignorant. Not many people really want to think that the splash of milk in their coffee is a bi-product of rape and torture.

There’s so much misinformation on the interweb that it’s easy to become pixilated by the whole affair.  No one seems to be able to agree on whether we should eat meat or not. My money is on ‘not’, and that’s one of the reasons why I don’t. The other reason is that I really don’t want to be responsible for the needless torture of my fellow earthlings. I don’t want to be one of these people that say they love animals whilst tucking into a plate of dead lamb. I guess what they really mean is that they like puppies and pictures of kittens playing with balls of wool.

If only this were true for every cow alive.

Don’t let your fear of other people’s glory in your ‘downfall’ put you off the occasional deviation, if that’s what it takes. Being vegetarian 95% of the time is better than not being vegetarian. Having a Bailey’s at Christmas does not make you an alcoholic.

Forget labels and focus on trying to live as compassionately as possible. Even if it’s just for one day a week to start with. Or switch to organic milk. It’s a start. If you do want to continue eating meat, you can help change the way the animals are treated each time you buy organic.

I don’t miss eating meat but I do miss being ignorant. I wish I still thought that cows lived in fields and not sheds. I wish I went to bed at night knowing that chickens saw daylight. I wish human beings occasionally remembered that they share this planet with many other species. They don’t own it.

Get a debate going by leaving a comment with your thoughts on veganism. Do you agree with points made here or do you feel we need to eat meat?

Read about the s510 bill restricting organic choices; Milk and its myths; Raw Veganism aiding weight loss and the impact of GM crops on organic farming.

images: metro.co.uk; healthyspotonline.com; futurity.org; bighugelabs.com

ISAAA claim that 10% of arable land is now GM dedicated

 

By JLBane

Last year the amount of farmland dedicated to GMO crops escalated to roughly 10% of the planet’s agricultural surface area.

According to the the International Service for the Acquisition of Agri-biotech Applications (ISAAA) the EU remains largely opposed to growing GM foods, countries like Brazil have had a sizeable growth in GM use; most of which were engineered to resist disease and tolerate herbicides.

ISAAA draws some of it’s funding from the GMO industry and they claim that biotechnology is the best way towards sustainability. Now of course, they’re funded by the people that want to push their mutant seeds into the biggest possible arena so they’re bound to say that GM crops are the future of sustainability.

That connection to an industry which bastardises nature, pollutes the earth with its pesticides, poisons humans with its vile creations and extorts farmers into complicity completely invalidates any statement they make regarding food production.

Their report states that more than a billion hectares have been given over to GM crop growth since they were first introduced in 1996 and that more that 15 million farmers are now growing mutant plants.

Well what’s wrong with GM crops?

Francornstein

The world’s biggest seed/agrochemical company, Monsanto, told the New York Times that assuring the safety of food was not their job but the job of the Food and Drugs Administration (FDA). The FDA asked Monsanto for a report on a growth hormone and this was carried out by Monsanto employee Margaret Miller. After the report was finished Miller then went to work for the FDA and her first job was to approve the report that she had written for Monsanto. (Source; Organic Consumers Association of America)

Aside from the obvious fact that GM seeds are a man-made aberration of nature, the companies that produce them do so because they have been producing destructive pesticides and herbicides for decades and as their ‘weed and pest killers’ have become stronger, natural plants have become less resistant to them.

Monsanto were the first corporation to obtain a patent on a seed and since then have accumulated masses on different ‘modified’ plants.

The plants are capable of withstanding the otherwise damaging pesticides, but should a farmer be found to have their seeds on his land without a license (for which farmers have to pay ridiculous money) then his/her farm will face fierce legal action for patent infringement.

Franken-Monsanto-stein also produce a growth hormone for dairy cows which produces more milk than normal but has been linked to various cancers in humans and the animals injected with it.

Those dairy cows are forced to live a miserable, short-lived existence in a pen which allows them no room for movement and are bulked up so they can barely stand. They live on average four years at most whereas grazing cows will live 12-14 years.

They have also received a patent in Germany on a pig breeding process which they claim with yield more meat from animals grown using their ‘special’ technique. Protesters have lobbied government to revoke the patent as they are concerned that Monsanto will try to use it against all pig breeders and control breeding rights.

The bottom line is that patenting on ALL life forms needs to be revoked and dismissed completely. Nobody should hold ownership of a type of plant or animal; and with Monsanto also looking to clone human organs for transplantation – human life.

“Biotech crops are here to stay”

ISAAA’s founder and chairman, Clive James said, “We can recount a momentous year of progress in biotech crop adoption.”

“During 2010, the accumulated commercial biotech plantation exceeded one billion hectares – that’s an area larger than the US or China.

“And biotech crops registered double-digit growth over 2009, bringing the total global plantings to 148 million hectares. Biotech crops are here to stay.”

Despite that looking like a huge area on paper it is still only 10% of all available arable land in the world which means that James’ comment is way off the mark. He is spinning his opinion to make us believe that it’s true, but it couldn’t be any further from it.

However, critics point out that this is still just 10% of the world’s arable land area as defined by the UN Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO).

Around half the global GM production is based in the US but third world and developing countries are catching up quickly, mainly due to misleading tactics employed by companies like Monsanto. India has seen an alarming rate in farmer suicides due to poverty after falling heavily into debt with GM seed companies.

Against GMO

Greenpeace have presented the European Commission with a petition containing more than one million signatures, demanding that the executive stop approving new GM varieties.

“Today’s European data shows that GM crops are failing in the field and on the market; farmers and consumers are not falling for biotech industry propaganda,” said Greenpeace EU agriculture policy adviser Stefanie Hundsdorfer.

“GM crops are not more productive and are less resistant to extreme climate conditions than normal crops. They do however present a serious risk for our environment.”

Please share your thoughts on the GMO industry or any other points raised in this article by leaving a comment.

Read about the s510 bill which puts organic farmers’ businesses under increasing pressure, NAWAPA’s plan to irrigate Texas with Alaskan water, and how the organic raw vegan lifestyle can help combat companies like Monsanto.

images: dailymail.co.uk, leightonpost.com

Japanese Antarctic whaling suspended due to pressure from sea shepherds

 

By JLBane

I have never seen a whale in the flesh. I, like so many people, have had to admire them in pictures or on TV. I live in hope that one day I might get to share a patch of ocean with one, even for a few seconds.

I was fearful for a while that I might be too late, that by the time my travels took me to countries where the whales once swam freely they would be nothing more than a memory.

Conservation groups are battling every day to keep these beautiful creatures in good numbers, fighting against fishing and whaling industries which have become so huge, that many species of aquatic life, not just whales, are disappearing.

The good news today is that Japan has been forced to suspend its Antarctic whaling operations due to continual interruptions by a conservation group.

The Sea Shepherd Conservation Society has been a constant thorn in the Japanese whaling industry’s side for the past few years, but ramped up their disruptive tactics in the last two weeks; harassing the whaling vessels by hurling rancid butter in bottles onto the decks and tangling rope in the propeller of one ship, seriously slowing its movement.

Of course, Japan is now calling The Sea Shepherds terrorists, but let’s get a little perspective here. Firstly, nobody has been injured by the group, no lives have been lost, and no significant damage has been caused to any whaling vessels.

Secondly, saving the lives of 945 whales (Japan’s proposed number for culling, er I mean ‘scientifically observing’) is heroic and certainly not the actions of terrorists. There have been no reports of planes being flown into ships in the Antarctic recently either.

And what is that about? Since when did Japan own the Antarctic waters? Or at least think they have the right to exploit them?

A ban on all whale hunting was put in place back in 1986, but Japan have slipped through a hole in the net by claiming that their efforts are for ‘scientific purposes’. It reminds me of chemistry lessons in school; when doing experiments I always had my tripod, gauze, Bunsen burner and harpoon ship.

There are so many questions that need answering. What are the “scientists” looking for? Why do they have to kill the whales? What do they do with the bodies after they’ve completed their research? Why do they do the same research at the same time every year?

It’s fantastic that the Sea Shepherds have temporarily halted the whalers, and I live in hope that their efforts lead to a complete sewing up of the loophole that Japan so readily exploits.

Please let us know your thoughts or contribute to our collective knowledge by leaving a comment.

The food industry is a real mess and is heavily linked to the fishing and whaling industry. Read about how GM food is potentially destroying choices for those who seek organic produce.

images: huffingtonpost.com, viewmorepics.myspace.com

Saving water now is saving the planet’s future

By Hugo Lopes

Let me start by telling you that this is not a scientific document, I’m just an ordinary guy capturing my thoughts. I don’t have exact numbers, fancy theories or eye-catching charts; I’ll leave that to brighter minds than my own. Everything I put down here is “spoken” from the heart.

There are things I’ve always taken for granted and because of that I never learned to fully appreciate them; at least not until recently. It’s not that any special event has taken place or that I’ve had a religious experience; it’s simply because I’ve opened my eyes a little more to the world around me.

One thing that is becoming a real problem is clean water, that most vital commodity that we can’t live without.

I’m not going to lecture anyone about global warming. It is happening. Scientists might not agree on its impact and consequences in our everyday lives, and the future, but the one major fact is that it’s not good news.

There are thousands of articles about it all over the internet, magazines, newspapers, etc and if those *arguably* well funded articles can’t convince you that it is a matter of extreme importance, I doubt I can. What I can tell you is this: no one reading this article is being affected by global warming right now, not in a significant way at least.

There are some noticeable changes as a result but the worst is ahead of us and it’s our grandchildren who will feel it the most.

By changing little simple things in our daily routine, we can save thousands of gallons a year. Imagine what a difference that would make if everyone did that. Our homes are so inefficient as they are but because they’ve always been that way most of us don’t ask questions.

Here’s 5 things you could do to save water (and if conserving water isn’t incentive enough, think of it as saving money instead):

  • Grab a 1L plastic bottle, fill it with water and put it inside your toilet tank. It sounds crazy but it will actually save you a full litre of clean water every flush.
  • Only run your washing machine and dishwasher when they are full. You can save up to 1,000 gallons a month.
  • Drop your toilet tissue in the trash instead of flushing it to conserve the energy needed to clean the water.
  • Shorten your shower by a minute or two and you’ll save up to 150 gallons per month.
  • Use a water-efficient showerhead. They’re inexpensive, easy to install, and can save you up to 750 gallons a month.

Please share your thoughts about simple water conservation ideas by leaving a comment.

Read about Japanese Whaling halted by Seas Shepherds and how the s510 bill favours GM food over organic.

images: Top photograph by JLBane, side image – newsdigest247.com

The sun could help energy conservation with solar flares

 

By JLBane

Reports are today surfacing about a huge solar flare which erupted from a sunspot region that measures 62,000 miles across. The general consensus is that we could lose some radio, GPS and electrical services for a while in the next few days, but in the higher latitudes we’ll be treated to some spectacular aurora light shows.

I’m personally not well informed when it comes to solar activity but researching climate change does bring it to my attention from time to time as many scientists claim the sun is responsible for our climate change crisis.

That’s a discussion for another time, but if it’s true that we’re going to experience radio and satellite black outs, then as I see it there’s an opportunity for us to take part in a little energy conservation.

The scientific community are frothing about how active the sun is at the moment and the next four or five days could be particularly explosive, but here on earth it’s unlikely that we’ll feel any major difference as a result of these radioactive emissions.

The flare witnessed most recently was described as a X2.2 (a major event by all accounts) and is reportedly interfering with communication satellites, and with the same spot predicted to unleash further full spectrum rays upon the solar system in the next few days we have an opportunity to switch off the TV, walk up the nearest hill and wait for the pretty lights.

It’s a two-fold win. Firstly you’re free of the eye burning television and its dreadful line-up of programs, saving yourself a bit on the electricity bill; and secondly you get to take a nice walk and enjoy the benefits of healthy exertion and the once in a lifetime experience of pretty, pretty space lights.

Of course there’s always a bit of scare mongering when events like this occur, especially since such dreadful films as 2012 foretold the end of the world as predicted by the Mayans, while John Cusack drove a limo through a falling skyscraper (I’ll never get the hours I spent watching that film back), and predictably it’s the USA which is at most risk.

Coronal emissions are said to have caused some problems with the power grid in Canada, after a flare hit the earth and overloaded Quebec’s grid leaving thousands of homes in the dark for several hours.

The power grids in the US are even more vulnerable as the scale of the transmission systems would attract currents caused by coronal mass ejections and could potentially destroy transformers. This could have a knock on effect for things like sewage refining, water pumps and hospitals.

That’s as bad as it gets and I don’t buy any of it for a second. I doubt there’ll be a single noticeable difference after the sunspot stops throwing its tantrum and life will carry on as normal, as it always does.

Please leave a comment about solar flares and what effect you think they may have on the earth.

images: wired.com, ehsmanager.blogspot.com

The climate change blame game is a null point

 

By JLBane

I’ve sat quietly on the sidelines watching the recourse between one point of view and another over climate change for quite some time. If you believe in it you’re a gullible eco-nazi; if you don’t believe in it you’re an ignorant planet killer with no respect for the Earth.

In choosing to respect nature and trying to co-habit with my environment as sensitively as possible, I am in fact being forced to take a ‘side’, and I really don’t appreciate that.

There is a war of sorts raging behind the outwardly civil political rhetoric, and it seems the pendulum is currently swinging towards the anti-AGW squad.

Most people don’t want to be bothered with climate problems, especially if it’s caused by humans, because it challenges their way of living, and most people are too comfortable in their world of limited responsibility.

Nobody wants to believe that they are responsible for damaging the planet.

It seems the biggest bone of contention with climate change is which way the finger of blame should point. Some say it’s a man made occurrence while others say it’s the sun heating up the entire solar system, and further contributors say it’s not even happening at all.

My view is a little more pragmatic. We don’t need to blame anyone, the planet is warming up and we’re not – en masse – helping matters.

There are good and bad arguments for all cases, but if it is the sun warming up the entire solar system, as in fairness has been partially evidenced by images of ice caps on Mars melting and Jupiter’s moons also thawing out; it’s funny that the effects on our planet have coincided with the upturn in car numbers on the roads this past century.

We’ve seen more extreme weather conditions which have led to freak heat waves, forest fires and the worst recorded droughts for 130 years in Russia, while last year Pakistan suffered the worst flooding in its history, claiming 1781 lives in its wake.

2010 was the second hottest year recorded, with previous years showing an incremental increase and 2011 set to be warmer still.

Pure coincidence of course.

I can’t verify the validity of solar evidence as I don’t have the equipment needed to see that far, and if I did I wouldn’t know what I was looking for; I’m not a scientist, but I do know that Mars follows a more elliptical orbital pattern than earth which takes it closer to the sun, and with no oceans and only a thin atmosphere it is far more susceptible to climate aberrations.

In my mind the question shouldn’t be, “Who is to blame for global warming?” It should be, “Do we want to breathe in fumes and have our cities and landscapes obscured by plumes of smog and toxic emissions?”

The answer for me is of course a resounding NO. How about you?

Let us know by leaving a comment.

Take a look at solar activity, water conservation tips and diminishing choices for organic buyers which are made worse by industrial farming and animal cruelty.

images: dailygalaxy.com, earthweek.com