Probably because he knew so much about nuclear power from the US nuclear Navy; had helped clean-up the Chalk River Nuclear Disaster in Canada, while serving in the US Navy, and was US President during the Three Mile Island Nuclear Meltdown, Jimmy Carter tried to get massive investment in renewables research (NREL). He even had solar panels put on the White House. Had Carter had his way, we would not even be discussing nuclear power today. Nor would we be worried about climate change. Instead Reagan got in and funding was cut for renewable energy. Reagan pulled the solar panels off of the White House. Forty years after Three Mile Island, instead of 100% renewables, we have dirty everything coups by Trump, Putin, and others: dirty energy, dirty money, dirty old men. As the history of humanity makes clear, with abuse and exploitation of…
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The sight of your beloved car being wrecked by a hail storm is certainly not pleasant.
In some cases, heartbreaking. Especially, when it cost you a fortune.
So, what can you do to escape the devastating wrath of the hail-storm?
Apparently, a lot.
With some simple steps, you can escape the terrible fury of this white monster AKA hail-storm.
Following are some of the tips that you can follow to safeguard your car against hail storm.
Sign Up For Weather Alerts
There is an old (and gold) saying that precaution is better than prevention.
No matter who said that, but they are damn right.
The knowledge of a hail storm prior to the event will give you enough time to take appropriate precautions.
This way, you won’t have to prepare an emergency plan at the eleventh hour and can totally ensure that your car is safely tucked away before the…
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FDA Warning: Darwin’s Natural Dog Food | Dog Food Advisor
March 26, 2019 — The U.S. Food and Drug Administration is cautioning pet owners not to feed their pets 3 lots of Darwin’s Natural Pet Products raw dog food after samples from these lots tested positive for Salmonella.
No images were provided by the FDA in its announcement.
The following image was previously retrieved from the brand’s website and is provided in good faith by The Dog Food Advisor. It may (or may not) be an accurate representation of the affected products.
What Products Are Affected?
The codes for each product affected are listed in the second group of numbers found just below the
barcode on the package.
Here are the affected products:
Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Chicken Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Manufacture Date: October 19, 2018
Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Chicken Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Manufacture Date: November 11, 2018
Darwin’s Natural Pet Products Natural Selections Turkey Recipe with Organic Vegetables for Dogs
Package: 5339(11)18102Manufacture Date: October 26, 2018
These products are manufactured by Arrow Reliance Inc., doing business as Darwin’s Natural Pet Products.
They are sold online direct to consumers.
What Caused This Alert?
The FDA is issuing this alert because the affected lots of Darwin’s raw dog food represent a serious threat to human and animal health.
They are are considered adulterated under the Federal Food, Drug, and Cosmetic Act because they contain Salmonella bacteria.
The FDA collected and analyzed unopened samples of products from these 3 lots in response to a consumer complaint.
Samples from all three lots tested positive for Salmonella.
Because these products are sold and stored frozen, the FDA is concerned that people may still have them in their possession.
Salmonella is a bacterium that can cause illness and death in humans and animals, especially those who are very young, very old, or have weak immune systems.
According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), people infected with Salmonella can develop diarrhea, fever and abdominal cramps.
Most people recover without treatment. But in some people, the diarrhea may be so severe that they need to be hospitalized.
In these patients, the Salmonella infection may spread from the intestines to the blood stream and then to other body sites unless the person is treated promptly with antibiotics.
Consult your health care provider if you have symptoms of Salmonella infection.
Pets do not always display symptoms when infected with Salmonella, but signs can include vomiting, diarrhea (which may be bloody), fever, loss of appetite and/or decreased activity level. If your pet has these symptoms, consult a veterinarian promptly. You should also be aware that infected pets can shed the bacteria in their feces without showing signs of being sick.
Consult a veterinarian if your pet has symptoms of Salmonella infection.
Read the Company’s Response
Here’s a https://www.dogfoodadvisor.com/dog-food-recall/fda-warning-darwins/ to the Press Release which includes the company’s response to the FDA warning.
What to Do?
If you have any of the affected Darwin’s Natural Pet Products in your possession, stop feeding it to your pets.
Discard the product in a secure container where other animals, including wildlife, cannot access it.
Consumers who have had the affected products in their homes should clean refrigerators and freezers where they were stored.
Clean and disinfect all bowls, utensils, food prep surfaces, pet bedding, toys, floors, and any other surfaces that the food or pet may have had contact with.
Clean up the pet’s feces in yards or parks where people or other animals may become exposed.
Consumers should thoroughly wash their hands after handling the recalled product or cleaning up potentially contaminated items and surfaces.
U.S. citizens can report complaints about FDA-regulated pet food products by calling the consumer complaint coordinator in your area.
Canadians can report any health or safety incidents related to the use of this product by filling out the Consumer Product Incident Report Form.
I just started recycling about 6 months ago, and am baffled as to why I was never concerned with it before! I remember any time I moved, I would contact the county trash service and would always be asked, “Would you like to add a recycling bin at no additional charge?” I would always reply, “No thank you.” thinking that I would never remember to do it, and throwing things away were just “so much easier” in my mind. I never thought about the consequences of throwing things away that could be reused.
Why we should limit and eliminate our plastic use:
After researching facts documented in 2018, I’ve learned that over 8 billion tons of plastic each year is disposed of, and less than 10% is actually recycled. Of that 8 billion tons, almost 13 million tons each year is dumped into our oceans. This impacts marine animals, coral…
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Those 824 mortalities (deaths) represent 13% of the Florida manatee population, and many of them were caused by people – either directly or indirectly.
The Revelator released a video that goes into more detail about why so many manatees died last year. Click below to watch it, and be sure to visit this link for the original story.
This brown pelican had a torn pouch after eating at least one fish carcass. Rehabilitators at Key West Wildlife Center fixed its pouch, but its exposed trachea resulted in pneumonia. It died 1 month later. Photo credit : Key West Wildlife Center
March 25th, 2019. KEY WEST, Fla. – Wildlife officials in Florida and experts as far south as Key West are trying to push one message : Don’t feed pelicans.
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Less than a week after the Humane Society of the United States (HSUS) released the disturbing report that 36 beagles were being force-fed a fungicide in a test commissioned by Coreteva Agriscience, a division of Dow DuPont, the company announced it will end this terrible study.
An undercover HSUS investigator at Charles River Laboratories in Michigan discovered that the beagles were being fed Adavelt, a new Coreteva Agriscience fungicide, in gelatin capsules for a year. According to the report released March 12, some of these dogs “were being subjected to very high doses – so high that up to four capsules had to be shoved down their throats.”
All the surviving beagles were scheduled to be euthanized in July. Their organs would then be removed and examined for any damage from the fungicide.
This study is horrible for many reasons. For one thing, it does not replicate how Adavelt would be ingested by humans. Even worse, the United States government hasn’t even required this test for over 10 years, ever since scientists realized it provides no worthwhile information.
Corteva Agriscience said it had to conduct the test—which it admitted was unnecessary—to meet a Brazilian regulatory requirement. However, Brazil’s pesticide authority, ANVISA, told the HSUS it will waive the test for companies that don’t want to conduct it.
At Corteva Agriscience’s request, ANVISA sent a formal, written version of this policy to the entire Brazilian pesticide industry. But Conteva Agriculture refused to stop the test until the industry received confirmation that it was no longer required. If that confirmation took longer than four months, those beagles would die in July.
The HSUS and Humane Society International (HSI) have been working for months to make Corteva Agriscience end its cruel fungicide test and release the beagles, so they can find loving homes. More than 122,000 people signed HSUS’ petition on Care2 making this demand.
On March 18, just six days after the HSUS released its report, Corteva Agriscience announced it had secured a waiver from ANVISA and had immediately ended the test. The company promised it would make “every effort” to rehome the beagles.
We’ve been working to refine, reduce, & replace animal tests for years. Today we’re pleased to announce our efforts resulted in a waiver & we can stop the study. We’ll make every effort to rehome the animals. Please read our full statement. pic.twitter.com/SQc5RJg41M
— Corteva Agriscience™ (@corteva) March 18, 2019
“We applaud Corteva for making the right decision,” Kitty Block, HSUS president and CEO, wrote on her blog. “The company has been a valuable partner to us in the past on important measures to decrease animal testing and we hope that we can work with them on a happy ending for these dogs.”
The surviving beagles owe their lives to the efforts of the HSUS and HSI, as well as everyone around the world who urged Corteva Agriscience to stop the test. Here’s hoping the HSUS is successful again in finding loving homes for every one of these survivors.
Creating a Care2 petition is easy. If you have an issue you care deeply about, why not start your own petition? Here are some guidelines to help you get started, and soon the Care2 community will be signing up to support you.
Photo credit: mus15house
Painted lady butterflies landing on a cherry tree as they migrated north through Encinitas, Calif.CreditCreditMike Blake/Reuters
Swarms of any other insect might provoke fears of a coming apocalypse, but clouds of butterflies migrating through Southern California are captivating onlookers who are relishing the otherworldly spectacle.
The orange butterflies, called painted ladies, are known to travel annually from the deserts of Southern California to the Pacific Northwest. This month, people are taking notice because of the sheer size of the migration: Scientists estimate the teeming painted ladies number in the millions.
Substantial rainfall in the deserts near the Mexican border, where the North American painted ladies lay their eggs, is the reason for the unusually large swarms. The rain caused plants to thrive, giving the painted lady caterpillars plenty of food to fuel their transformation, said Arthur M. Shapiro, a professor of evolution and ecology at the University of California, Davis.
To human observers, the painted ladies move with speed and intention, as if they have somewhere to be. They can fly as fast as 25 miles per hour.
“The striking thing is they’re moving very rapidly and directionally,” said Professor Shapiro, who has studied butterfly migrations in California for more than 40 years. “So it’s almost like being in a hail of bullets.”
They tend not to veer from oncoming cars, which can prove troublesome in Los Angeles traffic. When the painted ladies smash into a windshield, the result is a glob of yellow, butter-like ooze. That’s the result of the butterfly’s stored fat, used to make the long journey north, Professor Shapiro said.
Monika Moore, a butterfly enthusiast who lives in Fullerton, Calif., said she noticed that the mass moves in a strange way. The butterflies will fly low to the ground in an open field or yard, but when they encounter a tall building, they will fly over it — creating a “funky” up-and-down dipping pattern, said Ms. Moore, who has a Facebook page called California Butterfly Lady.
“They’re in a hurry, like the rabbit in ‘Alice in Wonderland,’” she said. “They have a very important date.”
This year, the painted lady migration in California appears to have veered off its customary course. Professor Shapiro said that if the painted ladies were following their annual pattern, they should have arrived in Northern California about a week ago, yet they appear to be staying in Southern California.
One possible explanation, Professor Shapiro said, is that there has been such abundant rain and plant growth in Southern California that the butterflies have settled down and reproduced there.
Professor Shapiro reported on Sunday evening that he had seen nine painted ladies near where he lives in the Northern California.
“Presumably these are the vanguard,” he wrote in an email. “We’re off and running.”
The explosion of plant growth in Southern California that has fueled this migration of butterflies is in itself a spectacle. The growth of colorful wildflowers, called a super bloom, has attracted a steady stream of tourists. In 2017, wildflower blooms in Southern California were so dense that they were visible from space.
[One of our reporters visited Anza-Borrego Desert State Park, a site of the super bloom.]
Substantial rainfall in the deserts near the Mexico border, where the North American painted ladies lay their eggs, has fueled this year’s unusually large swarms.CreditJohn Francis Peters for The New York Times
Substantial rainfall in the deserts near the Mexico border, where the North American painted ladies lay their eggs, has fueled this year’s unusually large swarms.CreditJohn Francis Peters for The New York Times
Although this year’s butterfly migration is significant, it pales in comparison with the swarms of 2005. That year, scientists estimated more than a billion butterflies traveled across California. Cars on California highways looked as if they had been splattered with raw eggs.
As the painted ladies linger in the southern part of the state, Californians are getting a prolonged look at the clouds of flapping orange wings.
On an overcast day last week, Jessica McGhee biked to the waterfront in Redondo Beach to collect plastics to use to make art. Ms. McGhee said she saw a couple of butterflies flit by, then a few more. Soon they flew by in the dozens, and then in the hundreds.
“I felt like I was in a Disney movie”
by Alex Larson
An environmental crisis continues in the Solomon Islands as for more than month, a cargo ship off the coast of Rennell Island in the Kangava Bay has been leaking oil into the waters. This site also happens to be a UNESCO World Heritage site as it is the world’s largest raised coral atoll.
The ship, a 740-foot-long ship called the Solomon Trader ran aground on February 5, 2019 where it was carrying more than 700 metric tons of oil according the Australian Department of Foreign Affairs and Trade (DFAT) said Tuesday. So far, CNN affiliate Radio NZ has reported that the wreck has released more than 100 tons of oil into the sea that holds one of the most important coral atolls in the world.
While a large amount of the oil still remains in the ship, there is a high risk that the remaining oil on board could leak into the sea. According to the DFAT, the oil had spread about three and half miles and has begun to wash up onshore.
Speaking to the New York Times, Simon Albert, a marine ecologist at the University of Queensland explained that the spill is likely to cause long therm damage to the coral and local ecosystem.
When coral comes in contact with oil, it can either kill the coral polyps direct or significantly impact reproduction, growth, and behavior over the a long period of time. What this means is that this coral, which is already struggling to survive due to bleaching events and ocean acidification, will be impacted for generations of coral to come.
While the future will be problematic, there are already environmental impacts occurring according to Radio NZ. Loti Yates, the director of the Solomon Islands Disaster Management Office, told them that dead fish have been washing up on beaches.
“There are dead fish and crabs and all that,” Yates said. “The fumes that is coming out from the oil is also affecting communities and I just had a report it’s also impacting on the chicken and birds.”
The site is the largest raised coral atoll in the world, according to UNESCO, which said in a statement this week the leak is taking place just outside the World Heritage site.
The ship ran aground when it was attempting to load cargo of bauxite in the Solomon Island when Cyclone Oma pushed in into a reef. The ship is based out of Hong-Kong and insured by a Korean company.
Thus far, the company attempted to try and use a tugboat to move the ship but this only made matters worse as it pushed it further into the reef. Since then, Australian officials are supporting the Solomon Islands in efforts to mitigate ecological damage. The DFAT said the Australian government has deployed special equipment and an eight-person response crew from the Australian Maritime Safety Authority.
The companies are now working on transferring the remaining 600 metric tons of fuel oil on the ship to different tanks which will be pumped onto a separate barge that is en route.
They’ve also started deploying oil spill booms to contain the spread, and have begun cleaning along the shoreline, the statement said.
How to stop ‘Anonymous’ phone calls on your landline
Posted on March 16, 2019 ~Eowyn
Last year, I did a post on “Why the FTC’s Do Not Call registry doesn’t stop those annoying robo-calls — and how you can stop them”.
After I signed on to a service called Nomorobo, which blocks robo-calls free for landline phones but costs $1.99 a month for mobile phones, most of the robo-calls I get indeed are blocked. How I know is when a call comes in, the phone only rings once, then the call is referred to Nomorobo.
But Nomorobo (to which I donated) still does not block all nuisance calls. I’ve noticed that some calls still get through, which my landline phone’s Caller ID identifies as “Anonymous”.
Well, there is a way to block “Anonymous” calls as well! Alas, it works only with some landline phones — Xfinity, AT&T and Verizon, but…
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“Presented as a gift in 1848 to Thomas Francis Meagher from a small group of French women sympathetic to the Irish cause, it was intended to symbolise the inclusion and hoped-for union between Roman Catholics and Protestants, the significance of the colours outlined by Meagher was, “The white in the centre signifies a lasting truce between Orange and Green and I trust that beneath its folds the hands of Irish Protestants and Irish Catholics may be clasped in generous and heroic brotherhood.” 
Blessing of the Colours by Lavery (cropped)
Michael Collins “Love of Ireland” by Lavery 1922
Church of Ireland “protestant” from West Cork, Sam Maguire recruited Michael Collins to the Irish Republican Brotherhood: https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Sam_Maguire Parnell was also a Church of Ireland member.
“The national flag of Ireland (Irish: bratach na hÉireann) – frequently referred to as the Irish tricolour (trídhathach na hÉireann) –…
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by: Mighty Earth
recipient: Bank of China and Sinohydro
The Tapanuli orangutan–the rarest primate in the world–is on the cusp of being obliterated by two Chinese state-owned entities. The Bank of China is funding and Sinohydro is building a dam that would permanently slice up the Tapanuli’s only habitat, and lead it to a near-certain fate of extinction.
The Tapanuli was first identified in 2017, a finding which drew headlines throughout the world. It marked the first time since 1929 that a new Great Ape species was discovered. The Tapanuli is one of just eight species of Great Ape worldwide (including humans).
With a population of just 800, the Tapanuli is already struggling to survive. It is facing dire threats from poaching, deforestation, and climate change. The Chinese-backed dam in the heart of their habitat would doubtless prove itself a death knell they can no longer overcome.
To save the Tapanuli, we must convince the Bank of China and Sinohydro to stop the Batang Toru dam. Following a widespread day of protest in 14 countries, Bank of China announced their intention to reevaluate the project. Given that the dam would permanently fragment the Tapanuli’s only habitat, any objective analysis would conclude that this orangutan has virtually no chance of survival if construction proceeds.
In all of written human history, no species of of Great Ape has ever been brought to extinction. This could soon no longer be the case.
Clearing for the dam has already begun. The next few weeks and months mark our best–and only–chance to save the Tapanuli before it’s too late.
Tell Bank of China and Sinohydro: Save the Tapanuli orangutan. Stop the Batang Toru dam.
Thousands of rare plant and animals species are in danger due to soybean deforestation. Sign the petition to demand that the government act to protect its tropical rainforests and the species that call them home.
Thirty-six innocent beagles are to be put to death in July, after a year of torturous testing by the Dow Chemical Company. Over 60,000 dogs are captured and forced into testing facilities every year, with many dying due to repeated exposure to toxic chemicals; it is a miracle these 36 survived at all, and they do not deserve to be disposed of like tools after all they suffered. Sign this petition to stop the pointless killing of these dogs.
Fewer than 100 Gulf of Mexico Bryde’s whales remain in the wild. Without immediate protections, they will disappear from the face of the Earth. Sign this petition to protect these majestic mammals.
There’s not a lot in the mainstream media, about this important anniversary. But much of what there is – concerns the “recovery” of the area, the Olympic Games, the robots, the ice wall, the (forced) return of evacuees, the story that tritium contamination doesn’t really matter, does it? …… etc etc – whitewashing the real situation. And, perhaps more importantly, encouraging the world to forget about the nuclear catastrophe. And above all, let’s pretend that it does not have global significance.
All sorts of experts, scientists etc propound ways to fix Fukushima’s nuclear problem, get rid of the molten nuclear fuel debris, and the nearly 2 million tons and counting, of radioactive water.
I could believe in their sincerity – IF all this concern were not linked to the promotion of the global industry. Indeed, if their concern were linked to a plan to stop producing toxic radioactive…
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By Alex Larson
While plastics are most commonly seen in shallow ocean waters or discussion generally surrounds areas such as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, it’s important to not forget that plastic is literally in every part of our ocean, even the deepest depths.
A recent study published in Royal Society Open Science has found examples of microplastics in animals living in the Mariana Trench, the deepest part of the worlds oceans at 7 miles under the sea surface.
The team studied 90 deep-dwelling shrimp for microplastic contamination from six ocean trenches around the Pacific Rim. Unfortunately, even though these marine animals live miles under the surface from humans irresponsible habits of plastic usage, they still cannot escape.
“Half of me was expecting to find something but that is huge,” Alan Jamieson, from Newcastle University’s School of Natural and Environmental Sciences, said in a statement. Jamieson also added that majority of man-made items found in the shrimp were clothes fabrics such as nylon.
The research revealed that 72 percent of the shrimp tested contained at least one plastic micro particle with some containing up to eight particles. Every trench investigated had marine animals with plastic inside of them but the results did vary depending on how frequent plastic was found in the shrimp. For example, in the Mariana Trench, 100 percent of shrimp examined contained plastics while the shrimp from the New Hebrides Trench came out at a 50 percent rate.
“We are piling all our crap into the place we know least about,” Jamieson said, adding that it is hard to know how exactly it was affecting the creatures it contaminated. These particles could just pass straight through the animal, but in the animals we looked at they must be blocking them,” he continued.
While humans addiction to using plastic and continuing to dispose of it irresponsibly continues, the planets oceans will feel it the most. By 2050 there will be more plastic in the oceans than there are fish while many marine organisms can’t distinguish common plastic items from food. Animals who eat plastic often starve because they can’t digest the plastic and it fills their stomachs, preventing them from eating real food
We need to bring this issue to the forefront of discussion and you can help do that by saying no to single-use plastics in your own life and secondly, petitioning your local businesses and governments to reduce plastic usage or promote laws that prohibit usage.
Although Daylight Saving Time affects many lies whenever it’s time to change the clocks, 80% of the global population does not follow the practice.
By Paola Rosa-Aquino
It’s no secret that plastics are, well, not ideal. Do you know how long it takes for one of those pesky coffee pods to break down? 500 years i.e., the entire duration of the Roman Empire.
That lengthy lifespan of plastic spells big problems for human health. Ubiquitous marine plastic, for instance, degrades and fragments into microplastics that can seep into the food chain and end up in our bodies. That’s bad news for your hormones, as Grist’s Eve Andrews reported, since compounds in plastics can have endocrine-disrupting effects.
So far, much of the research on the impact of plastic on human health has focused on a specific moment in the plastic lifecycle — such as manufacturing, product testing, or disposal. But, according to a first-of-its-kind international report released on Tuesday, the true toll of these polymers should be calculated looking at the whole cycle of a plastic product’s existence, from wellhead to final waste.
The report, authored by the Center for International and Environmental Law in partnership with six other environmental organizations, finds that “each of those stages interacts with others, and all of them interact with the human environment and the human body in multiple, often intersecting, ways.”
The picture is pretty grim: Humans are exposed to a wide variety of toxic chemicals and microplastics along the plastic lifecycle through inhalation, ingestion, and direct skin contact. According to the report, health problems associated with plastics include numerous forms of cancers, neurological, reproductive, and developmental toxicity, diabetes, several organ malfunctions, and impact on eyes and skin.
And shifting plastics away from one area of exposure can end up exacerbating existing disparities. For instance, let’s say you don’t want plastics to end up in the ocean, so you decide to dispose of them by burning them. Those fumes create new types of harmful chemical exposures (such as toxic air emissions, ash, or wastewater). So sure, some folks will have fewer microplastics in their seafood, but now the people living near incinerators (primarily low-income communities and communities of color now) will bear the brunt of that noxious witches’ brew.
While plastic is the material du jour in part thanks to its cheap convenience, the true cost of plastics has not been reflected in the price at the till. “Plastics are harming or killing animals around the globe, contributing to climate change and keeping us dependent on fossil fuels, entering our air, water, and food supplies, and seriously jeopardizing human health throughout their lifecycle,” said Graham Forbes, Global Plastics Project Leader for Greenpeace, in a press release.
So, is there some sort of end-all-be-all solution for this? Alas, as David Azoulay, director of environmental health at CIEL pointed out in a press release, “No global instrument exists today to fully address the toxic life cycle of plastics.”
Thankfully, more and more ventures are crawling out of the woodwork to try to ameliorate the problem, from reusable packaging to … wait for it … edible packaging. I mean, would you shell out a few extra bucks to eat your food wrappers? I know I would.
“Home » Media Center » Press Releases » March 6th 2019
Attorney General James Joins States’ Efforts To Halt Seismic Testing Off Atlantic Coast
NEW YORK – Attorney General Letitia James, along with 8 other attorneys general, has joined a group of non-governmental organizations’ motion to preliminarily enjoin the Trump Administration’s authorization of harassment of marine mammals via seismic air gun surveys in the Atlantic Ocean. These “seismic testing” surveys, meant to explore the ocean floor for oil and gas, will expose whales, dolphins, and porpoises to repeated sound blasts louder than 160 decibels. The surveys will threaten the health and life of hundreds of thousands of highly sensitive marine mammals, including multiple endangered or threatened species. In addition, these tests are another step toward allowing offshore drilling – an action that could result in severe and irreparable harm to coastal and…
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Grijalva unveils new attempt to ban uranium mining permanently near the Grand Canyon GRAND CANYON NATIONAL PARK — An Arizona lawmaker is renewing his push to halt uranium mining near the Grand Canyon, outlining a proposal Saturday that would make permanent a moratorium on new claims across 1 million acres of public lands.
Rep. Raúl Grijalva has introduced other versions of what he’s calling the “Grand Canyon Centennial Protection Act” several times in recent years, but he’s likely to find stronger support this time in the Democratic-controlled House, where he is chairman of the Natural Resources Committee.
On Saturday, he pitched the idea at the Canyon, flanked by Havasupai, Hualapai, Hopi and Navajo tribal leaders, in a building near the park’s South Rim that was packed with park visitors, tribal members and environmental advocates.
“Protecting the canyon is just, it’s overdue and it’s life-affirming,” Grijalva said, gesturing to the group. “The public wants…
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Acts of faith
By Sarah Pulliam Bailey
March 5 at 2:08 PM
Chocolate, alcohol and Twitter are some of the popular indulgences many Christians give up during the period of Lent leading up to Easter. But this year, some churches are encouraging congregants to give up plastics.
Dozens of Pennsylvania churches near Pittsburgh that belong to the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America are encouraging their churchgoers to forgo commonly discarded single-use plastics. Each week, parishioners will be encouraged to give up a different item: shopping bags, drinking straws, water bottles, Styrofoam and food wrappers.
The Rev. Sarah Rossing, pastor of St. James Evangelical Lutheran Church in Youngstown, Pa., said the idea originally came from a similar challenge that the Episcopal Diocese of Pittsburgh issued this year to reduce dependence on single-use plastics such as grocery bags and Styrofoam plates.
“It’s a way to think about it as more than just a personal thing, like chocolate or alcohol that’s enjoyable,” Rossing said. “This is asking people to give up convenience … and be more intentional with things and the Earth.”
Lent, which begins on Ash Wednesday and runs during the weeks leading up to Easter Sunday on April 21, marks a period of time when some Christians reflect on the biblical story of Jesus’ time in the desert, where he fasted and prayed before his eventual death and resurrection. Many Catholics and some Protestants give up something during the period.
Last year, the Church of England urged its worshipers to give up single-use plastics, distributing a calendar with environmentally themed Bible verses and suggestions on how to avoid using plastics. This year, the church is encouraging congregants to go on “litter pilgrimages” where they walk together, pray together and collect litter.
The Cathedral in the Episcopal Diocese of Colorado as well as several Protestant churches in Portland adapted the Church of England’s calendar for their own use and are also encouraging parishioners to give up plastic this Lent.
The world produces more than 300 million tons of plastic each year, and scientists estimate that up to 91 percent of plastic is never recycled, threatening the environment and poisoning animals. Plastics don’t biodegrade and can stay in landfills for hundreds of years. Several cities, including Washington, have banned Styrofoam containers and are taking action to limit other single-use plastics, such as straws and grocery bags.
On Ash Wednesday, the Episcopal Church will launch a “Creation Care Pledge” inviting members to pledge to environmental activism, such as using a carbon tracker and reducing meat consumption.
Lent can serve as a time for Christians to reflect on how our ordinary way of living has become destructive of God’s creation, says Walter Brueggemann, professor emeritus at Columbia Theological Seminary who has written a book on Lent.
“Christians have to resist the dominant world of commoditization in every way that we can think to do,” Brueggemann said. “Fasting is a discipline that gives energy for positive engagement with justice questions. The question is, what does it empower us to do?”
Among Christians in the United States, Catholics (61 percent) are most likely to observe Lent, according to a LifeWay Research survey in 2017. Protestants (20 percent) and Christians with evangelical beliefs (28 percent) are less likely to observe the period.
Stanley Hauerwas, a professor emeritus at Duke Divinity School who has written books on virtue, said that giving up plastic is straying too far from what Lent was meant to be.
“They’re giving up plastic as a way of doing something that seems to make the world a better place. It’s a confusion of categories,” Hauerwas said. “Giving up plastic is aimed at a different set of problems than what Lent is about. Lent is about confession of sin.”
Some churches in the Washington area have caught on to the trend of merging environmental activism and Lent, said Joelle Novey, director of the Greater Washington Interfaith Power & Light. She said she didn’t initially think of tying repentance and deprivation to ecological concerns, “but the idea of taking responsibility and ‘fasting’ some aspects of our unsustainable lifestyles seems to resonate deeply in many Christian communities.”
During Lent, St. Columba’s Episcopal Church in the District will host five workshops covering solar energy, green homes, green community, green world and green yards. And instead of giving something up like chocolate, parishioners have been encouraged to take a leaf from a cardboard cutout of a tree with an environmental change to make. At Saint Mark Presbyterian Church in North Bethesda, church leaders are asking congregants to fast from single-use plastics, especially straws. And at St. John Neumann in Reston, the Catholic parish will have meatless soup suppers each Friday during Lent using washable ceramic bowls, spoons and water tumblers instead of single-use disposable plastic and paper items.
For Christians who participate in Lent, fasting from a favorite food or beverage (57 percent) and going to church (57 percent) are the most common ways for them to observe the period, according to LifeWay. Additional prayer (39 percent), giving to others (38 percent) or staying away from a bad habit (35 percent) are also popular.
The idea of giving up food, especially sugar and alcohol, since they were associated with feasts, has its roots in early Christian traditions, according to Aaron Damiani, pastor of Immanuel Anglican Church in Chicago, who wrote a book on Lent called “The Good of Giving Up.” By the late second century, Christians fasted for 40 hours, going without food and drink between the afternoon of Good Friday and morning of Easter. Two centuries later, fasting was extended to the whole Lenten season.
“One of the objections to Lent is it’s a trend, that it’s a gimmick, that it’s a flash in the pan that will not have substance to it,” said Damiani, who recommends Christians follow the early Christians in prayer, fasting and almsgiving, or giving money. “This is an ancient practice that the early church found a lot of benefit in. Participating in the life of Christ through training is not a trend.”
The Rev. James Martin, a popular author and priest who is an editor at large for America magazine, said he hasn’t heard of any Catholic parishes encouraging giving up of plastics for Lent but that he thinks it would be in the spirit of Pope Francis’s major document on the environment that came out in 2015.
“Giving up plastic would benefit the common good more than giving up chocolate,” Martin said.
Spiritual preparation for Lent is more than simply giving something up, though, Martin said.
“It’s about your relationship with God. That’s more than simply self-sacrifice,” he said. “If you’re confused about what to do for Lent, just be kind. You can give something up, but doing something positive is just as important.”
Scott Clement contributed to this report.
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On March 12, California’s Water, Parks, and Wildlife Committee will vote on a bill to implement a statewide fur ban, which is the first vote needed in the process of this bill becoming law. Please call and email to urge your representative to vote “Yes” on AB 44 before March 12th! (California residents only)
Find your assembly member’s contact information by entering your zip code at idausa.org/findmyrep and clicking on the “California” tab.
When you call, introduce yourself and where you are calling from, and simply say “Please vote yes on A.B. 44 to implement a statewide fur ban because California residents do not support animal cruelty for vanity.”
Visit my alert to send a letter to your representative here.
To find out how you can help make California’s statewide fur ban a reality – even if you’re not a CA resident – visit furishistory.org
Let’s make fur history…
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Animal advocates are applauding the introduction of legislation in California that could make it the next state to end circus suffering by banning wild and exotic animal performances.
The Circus Cruelty Prevention Act (SB 313), which was just introduced by Senator Ben Hueso, would make it illegal to use wild and exotic animals in traveling shows, and would leave anyone found breaking the law facing fines of up to $25,000 for each violation.
Not only was this bill introduced over concerns about animal welfare, but also about the threat performing animals pose to public safety.
Even though wild animals have been used as performers in circuses for decades, we now know so much more about what they need to be physically and psychologically healthy and there’s no shortage of evidence showing that circuses can never come close to meeting those needs.
Both research and undercover investigations have exposed not only the problems inherent with keeping animals this way, denying them everything they need to thrive, but also the heartbreaking and violent abuses they’re exposed to behind the scenes that range from having food withheld to being beaten and blatantly mistreated.
While a number of cities in the state have already enacted bans or restrictions on the use of wild and exotic animals, a statewide ban would go much further to protect them from cruelty and exploitation, and it would send a strong message that using them as performers isn’t acceptable.
Please sign and share this petition urging lawmakers in California to take a compassionate and common sense stand for animals by passing the Circus Cruelty Prevention Act.
By Jessica Bose
There’s nothing like a nice warm, crisp pie filled with deliciously sweet fruit. This apple and pear crisp is great all year round, and it pairs perfectly with your favorite dairy-free ice cream!
Pear and Apple Crisp [Vegan]
2 bosc pears
2 granny smith apples
1/2 teaspoon orange zest
1/2 teaspoon lemon zest
1 tablespoon fresh orange juice
1 tablespoon fresh lemon juice
1/4 cup brown sugar
1 teaspoon ground cinnamon
1/4 teaspoon ground cardamom
1/4 teaspoon salt
1 tablespoon cornstarch
1 cup rolled oats
1/3 cup oat flour or all-purpose flour
1/4 cup brown sugar
1/4 teaspoon salt
1/2 cup vegan butter, cold
powdered sugar to garnish (optional)
Preheat oven to 350°F.
Peel, core, and dice the pears and apples into medium-sized chunks.
In a medium bowl, stir the prepared fruit with orange zest, lemon zest, fresh orange juice, fresh lemon juice, brown sugar, cinnamon, cardamom, salt, and cornstarch. Place the mixture into an 8 inch pan or dish.
Make the topping: combine rolled oats, oat flour, brown sugar, and salt. Use your hands to rub the butter into the oat mixture until crumbly. Place the topping on top of the fruit.
Bake for 40-50 minutes or until the topping is brown and the filling is bubbly. For a very crisp topping, switch the oven to broil for the last 10 minutes.
Sprinkle with powdered sugar and serve warm – don’t forget the plant-based ice cream.
About The Author
See My Recipes
Hi there! I’m Jess. I’m a baker, blogger, and highly caffeinated barista with an affinity for exploring the grand outdoors, growing my food, and livi… ng minimally. One day you’ll find me on the road with my traveling confectionary. Until then, I’ll be making food and playlists to share with the world from my little apartment in Los Angeles.
by: Care2 Team
recipient: Mayor Barry Wright
Kids in Winslow Township, New Jersey, are being encouraged to slaughter squirrels by the hundreds in the first annual Family Squirrel Classic. The hunting contest, sponsored by a local hunting organization, brands itself as a “family friendly” event. Kids are encouraged to kill, kill and kill, with the person who bags the largest squirrel being named the winner.
Contests that use animal lives as pawns, make light of the lives of the animals that are killed and teach impressionable children that these target animals are of no other worth than mere target practice. Cities, schools or hunting organizations should not be encouraging children to take life so lightly.
Instead, kids should be taught the value of life and why it is important to respect all living things no matter what. Neglecting to do so could result in dire consequences. There are plenty of studies that show an irrefutable link between violence against animals and violence against people. Many of the world’s most heinous violent criminals got their start torturing or killing animals.
Promoting these “hunts” and contests instills a flippant disregard and lack of compassion for the lives of other living things. Please sign the petition. It is time the Winslow Township government step in and ban these gory animal slaughters for kids. Tell Mayor Barry Wright the world is watching and ask them to end these terrible events.