Environmentally-Friendly Alternatives – Balloons Blow

balloonsblow.org
Environmentally-Friendly Alternatives – Balloons Blow

There are many alternatives to balloon releases. To avoid unintentionally littering with balloons, you can instead have fun, celebrate, and remember with environmentally-friendly alternatives.

Let your imagination soar and who knows what creative, one-of-a-kind idea you might come up with!Unsustainable alternatives
Sky lanterns: (Chinese paper lanterns) are not an environmentally-friendly alternative. Leaving a fire unattended is against fire code. Sky lanterns have started huge fires, caused serious burns, and have killed animals.
Butterfly gardens – not butterfly releases

Butterfly releases: Lepidopterologists warn butterfly releases are not good for the environment. They also promote the breeding and exploitation of animals. Click here or here for more information.

Dove releases: Wildlife rehabilitators advise against the release of all domestic birds. Casualties are still common even when a professional is used. They also promote the breeding and exploitation of animals. http://balloonsblow.org/environmentally-friendly-alternatives/ here for more information.
Here are some ideas to get you started…

Honoring with Living Memorials

Plant in remembrance – A great way to honor and remember a loved one or an important issue is to bring more life to our planet. By planting a native tree, flower garden or butterfly garden you are not only giving life to that plant you are also providing shelter, resources, and clean air to all kinds of wildlife and people. This remembrance will last a very long time and you can visit your tree or flower bed as much as you want and create more life by doing so!

Flowers and trees can also be used at fundraising events as incentives to donate. They could then be planted in a public area, perhaps taking on different shapes or words, or can be taken home by participants to be planted elsewhere as a living memory. Here’s a great place to find trees: GiveTreeGifts.com. There are urns to plant as well. You can also help reforestation with memorial, celebration, or pet loss trees by visiting The Trees Remember.

Flags, banners, streamers and dancing inflatables – Many businesses are realizing the benefits of using reusable eye-catching signage. Colorful streamers, flags and banners save money and time over balloons, ribbons and helium. They are also weather resistant, save Helium, and can be reused again and again! Here are some great companies: Ribbon Streamers, Custom Made Flags, Fort Myers Banners.

Ribbon dancers – Instead of giving kids and guests balloons at parties or events, why not give them something a little more engaging? Balloons will simply sit tied up or be gone in a flash if released (not to mention harm wildlife and deplete helium resources). Ribbon dancers are beautiful and require people to move around and have fun!

A group of people spinning and twirling with a colorful long ribbon following their every move is surely a sight to see. You can even have guests make their own ribbon dancer, decorations and all!

Kites & garden spinners – Vibrant fabric that dance in the high winds or eye-catching colors spinning in the garden. Unlike balloons, kites and spinners can be enjoyed for years. Here’s a couple awesome places to find both, and more: Zephyr Kites, Lainie’s Way, Fun with Wind. Kites can be a great prize to give people who donate and can then be flown to draw attention. Here is an example of a successful group that uses kites for fundraising.

Bunting – A great way to decorate for parties and celebrations is bunting! These beautiful waves of fabric can be made at home and uniquely designed with different patterns, shapes, and colors. They are also reusable, fun to make, and are sure to light up the party! Here is a link to learn how to make your own bunting.

Pinwheels – With flashy colors fluttering in the wind, pinwheels are sure to catch many eyes. They are great for attracting attention to businesses, awareness projects, birthday parties and more! Kids can have fun making their own, find easy instructions here. Click here for printable patriotic pinwheel. Here are examples of pinwheels making a point: Pinwheels for Prevention, Pinwheels for Peace.

Tissue Paper Pompoms – For some color burst at parties or celebrations, tissue paper pompoms are spectacular! These pretty, colorful poof balls can be easily made at home and are reusable. They are also fun activities for kids to make too! Here’s a simple step-by-step guide to make your own pompoms.

Drumming – The drum has been called the heartbeat of Mother Earth. Using drums to celebrate does not create waste or cause danger to wildlife. The beat brings people together and can be used for any occasion. Here is a great example of how drumming can replace harmful celebrations.

Get flocked – A flock of pink flamingos brightens everyone’s day. Fake flamingos can be placed on the lawn of one’s choice for a donation, where they will stay for a few days before moving to the next scheduled location. They can be reused for years of flocking fun. Here is a great example.

Floating flowers – For some, the upward drifting of balloons gives them a sense of letting go, and at the same time thinking the balloon will eventually reach their loved one. Because remembering a loved one by potentially killing another life isn’t exactly the best feeling, there are many alternatives. Floating flowers or flower petals down a calm stream can give you the same sense of letting go. You will be able to be in nature and feel the energy of your loved one and all the life that surrounds you! Be sure to use native flowers and not let go an excessive amount.

Wildflower seed bombs – A great way to give a gift that grows is by making your own flower seed bombs! It’s important to only use native seeds. These little pounces will spread life-giving, beautiful flowers. Learn how to make your own seed bombs here.

Jump rope for a cause – Jump roping is fun, good for your body, and a great way to get people together! Using jump ropes to bring awareness to a cause engages participants and will bring attention from others who see. Here is a cause that has been very successful using jump ropes to bring awareness and funds to a growing issue.

Environmental Fundraising – Fundraising with Earth-themed and eco-conscious products. Raise funds and keep the environment clean of wasteful plastic straws. Fundraising with glass straws or here.

Ten eco-friendly fundraising ideas – Green Child Magazine has a great post.

Birthday parties without balloons – Birthday parties can be festive & exciting without boring, wasteful balloons. Here are some great examples.

Painted rocks – A stone can be used to paint memorials or celebrations! These beautiful stones can be placed in favorite spots, under trees, in gardens, along walkways, or inside. This is great for families or anyone that wants to leave a mark by using your imagination. Please be mindful when finding rocks to paint.

Lighting candles & Luminaries – A great way to remember a loved one or welcome new life is by lighting candles. On the anniversary of the passing or the birthday of new life, everyone can light a candle and remember their loved one or wish and be filled by the light of the candle. This can be a lasting, and comforting connection between you and another life! Luminaries are beautiful at night and can be used to line sidewalks or placed in a group. Learn how to make a frosted Mason jar luminary. You can also find luminaries with designs on them here.

Blowing bubbles – Blowing bubbles is always fun; watching them bounce around towards the sky and twist with the wind. It also requires you to exhale and breathe. This is a great way to release your feelings as well and just let go. Imagine the spectacular sight of a countless number of bubbles floating away into the sky with a piece of every person that have gathered together! Here is a quick homemade recipe.

Giant bubbles – We love bubbles! And the good people at Dr. Zigs can get you started on creating your own giant bubbles. They ‘strive to be a sustainable company and are driven by strong ethical and environmental principles’. These bubbles are a sight to behold and fun for everyone. Easy-to-use wands allow anyone to blow their own. Let the breeze carry them away!

The Bubble Bus is also exciting for events, celebrations, fundraisers or parties. Millions of bubbles big and small will surround everyone with joy! Make homemade bubble wands to create your own big bubbles here.

Mass Gathering – Having people come together to create a shape, word, or image can be very unifying and beautiful! This has been done to bring awareness to an issue/cause, for memorials, and celebrations. Everyone gets to participate to be a part of something bigger than themselves!

Memorials for beloved pets – Turn your pets cremations into nurturing memorials that will encourage more life. Planting native trees or wild flowers is a beautiful way to perpetuate your pets memory. You can find great alternatives here and here.

Origami Whales – Make your own pod of whales with origami whale instructions. Bring awareness to these gentle giants instead of harming them with balloons. Here is an example of how children can come together and make a difference.

Colored lights – Colored lights catch attentions during parties, holidays, and even on certain issues! It can replace a normal white light year-round at a business or be used temporarily on special days. Here is a great example of how colored lights can be used to bring awareness to an issue.

Races, walks and organized games – Engaging your audience is a key to a successful event. Fundraisers and awareness events can have racers, walkers or players donate to participate, all while attracting positive attention to the issue and having fun!

Marches – It is hard to pass by a large organized group of people and not wonder what brought them together that day. Marches are a great way to bring attention to a pressing issue or honorable individual from local people to large media networks!

Book and food drives – There are many items that can be collected by holding a drive like books, nonperishable food, art supplies, shoes, clothes, etc. All of the items gathered can be used to directly help provide to others in need and spread awareness at the same time.

Flying Wish Paper – Write your wishes on these thin pieces of paper, roll them up, light them, and watch them rise. There is very little ash left and way to get the floating effect without harming the environment. Check them out on Flying Wish Paper.

Shaved heads – This look can bring a lot of attention when a group of people are willing to shave their heads for a cause or person. This alternative is used at outreach events and memorials and can catch on fast with participants. The press is sure to pick up on the unusual look that so many people choose to wear.

http://balloonsblow.org/environmentally-friendly-alternatives/

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Ikea to Phase Out Single-Use Plastic Products by 2020!

onegreenplanet.org
Ikea to Phase Out Single-Use Plastic Products by 2020!
Aleksandra Pajda
3-4 minutes

IKEA has just joined the global fight against plastic pollution by committing to phase out single-use plastic products from its stores and restaurants by 2020. The Scandinavian chain decided to go for this anti-plastic move in order to help its customers live more sustainably in response to the growing concern about plastic pollution and its impact on the oceans.

The retailer announced that it will eliminate plastic straws, plates, cups, freezer bags, bin bags, and plastic-coated paper plates and cups, replacing the items with alternatives where possible, the Guardian reports. While all the details of the phase-out are not yet settled, the company is clearly moving forward and finding new solutions.

“We don’t have all the answers yet but we are working together with our suppliers to find solutions that are good for both people and the planet,” said an IKEA spokesperson.

The retailer says it wants to help customers live more sustainably by offering products such as a tap nozzle that could save over 90 percent of water used. The chain will also start offering solar panels in 29 markets by 2025 – up from the five that offer them now. IKEA also plans to introduce more vegetarian and vegan food options into the stores’ cafes.

“Through our size and reach we have the opportunity to inspire and enable more than 1 billion people to live better lives, within the limits of the planet,” said Torbjörn Lööf, the Chief Executive of the retailer’s parent Inter IKEA group. “Change will only be possible if we collaborate with others and nurture entrepreneurship. We are committed to taking the lead working together with everyone – from raw material suppliers all the way to our customers and partners.”

IKEA has already pledged to phase out oil-based plastics and is seeking to ensure that all its plastic products are made using recycled materials by August 2020. To make that vision a reality, the company has invested in a plastics recycling plant. It has also invested in wind farms and put solar panels on its stores in order to meet the goal of relying on renewable electricity and heat in its stores by 2020.

Being one of the most popular and recognizable furniture retailers with more than 363 stores worldwide, IKEA has the opportunity to influence the habits and choices of hundreds of millions of its customers, have a serious impact on other retailers and businesses, and significantly reduce the amount of plastic waste it generates – and it is incredible to see the company take that chance!

Each of us can play a small part in making a change and reducing plastic pollution for the benefit of our planet. To find out how you can help by ditching disposable plastics, check out One Green Planet’s #CrushPlastic campaign!

http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/ikea-phase-single-use-plastic-products/?utm_source=Green+Monster+Mailing+List&utm_campaign=642fbf4340-NEWSLETTER_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_bbf62ddf34-642fbf4340-106049477

Image source: William Murphy/Flickr

Petition · Monsanto: Ban neonicotinoids from pesticide products used for agriculture · Change.org

Ban neonicotinoids from pesticide products used for agriculture
Moira Vodila started this petition to Monsanto and 1 other

Since 1990, beekeepers have noticed a drastic decline in the bee population. Bee colonies have been disappearing left and right due to the excess use of Neonicotinoids. These chemicals are harmful to the species and are causing a pandemic for these honeybees. Before planting, some might use a product by Monsanto or Bayer to help the plants with pesticides. By doing this, though, they have made it so when a bee goes to pollinate, it will get sick to the point where it will not be able to survive. More and more bees have not been able to live through the winters because of the harmful chemicals left in their bodies. Without bees, we will lose a drastic amount of agricultural products, which will hurt not only the food industry, but our economy.

This petition is to ban the use of neonicotinoids in our pesticides. It is far more harmful to the insects and is killing off species. We must make a change if we do not want to see our food die off or become unsustainable. The bees are far more important to the human race than we make them out to be. Not only do they provide honey, they pollinate our agriculture and give us a source of food. We must save the bees to save ourselves.

https://www.change.org/p/monsanto-ban-neonicotinoids-from-pesticide-products-used-for-agriculture/sign?utm_medium=email&utm_source=aa_sign_human&utm_campaign=346813&utm_content=&sfmc_tk=Y65ELrEVwnOSO7%2bDYTtOcSMlNOkxsMvLDNmMR%2be2DEC55qn0tKy0l6FI39WBYH%2fk&j=346813&sfmc_sub=61374949&l=32_HTML&u=62028692&mid=7233053&jb=103

© 2018, Change.org, Inc.Certified B Corporation

Petition: Whole Foods – Tell Tyson to Clean Up Meat

Whole Foods – Tell Tyson to Clean Up Meat

by: Mighty Earth
target: John Mackey, CEO, Whole Foods

92,079 SUPPORTERS
95,000 GOAL

Industrial meat producers like Tyson are the main source of water pollution across the country, and Whole Foods is turning a blind eye. Excess manure and fertilizer pollution from the vast quantities of feed grown to raise meat is polluting local waterways in the Heartland, washing downstream along the Mississippi River until it reaches the Gulf of Mexico. This pollution is contaminating drinking water, and causing one of the largest Dead Zones on record in the Gulf.

As one of America’s largest grocery stores with a brand trusted for sustainability, Whole Foods should be holding its suppliers accountable to make meat less polluting. But Whole Foods is currently selling you meat from Tyson Foods, one of the top polluters of our nation’s waters.

Urge Whole Foods to hold Tyson and other suppliers accountable for improving agricultural practices to make meat less polluting.

For more information about Tyson’s water pollution problem, read our report “Mystery Meat II.”
Update #17 hours ago
Tyson is feeling the heat from our campaign and have pledged to improve farming practices on about half their feed acres. Unfortunately, Tyson hasn’t shared any details about how they will get that done. We’ll be delivering our petition to urge Whole Foods to demand better from Tyson this Tuesday. Please share the petition now to help us hit 100K supporters! Thanks!

https://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/783/792/837/

Patagonia vs. Donald Trump | GQ

gq.com
Patagonia vs. Donald Trump | GQ
Rosecrans Baldwin

This is not your parents’ fleece-maker. We’re past the old jokes about Patagucci or Fratagonia. Sure, you still see a Synchilla vest on every venture capitalist in Palo Alto; not for nothing does the Jared Dunn character on Silicon Valley possess a Patagonia collection supreme. But the vest also crisscrosses popular culture: DeRay Mckesson, one of the faces of Black Lives Matter, wears Patagonia so often his vest has its own Twitter feed. A$AP Rocky shows up in Snap-T sweaters. Louis Vuitton cribbed its Classic Retro-X jacket for a mountaineering look. Universities from Oregon to Ole Miss are Patagonia-saturated, and meanwhile, vintage finds—the rarest featuring the original “big label” logo—fetch a premium on eBay.

The company’s HQ looks like a cross between a college campus and a recycling center. Solar panels everywhere. Wet suits drying on the roofs of cars—the five-acre spread is a short walk from the beach. The company has an on-site school where employees can enroll their kids through second grade, one of the reasons that Patagonia has near gender parity among employees. Many of its CEOs have been female, including the current one, Rose Marcario. Chouinard writes in his memoir–cum–business bible, Let My People Go Surfing, “I was brought up surrounded by women. I have ever since preferred that accommodation.”

Chouinard was born in Maine but formed in California. The son of a hardworking French-Canadian carpenter, he moved with his family to Burbank, just north of Los Angeles, in 1946, when Chouinard was 8; it was his mother’s idea, to improve his dad’s asthma. In California, Chouinard stood out, not in a good way. He was short, spoke French, and had a name like a girl. He hated school. High school history class was for practicing holding his breath, so he could free-dive deeper to catch wild lobster off Malibu. “I learned a long time ago that if you want to be a winner,” he told me, “you invent your own games.” So he ran away, to Griffith Park to hunt rabbits, the Los Angeles River to catch crawdads. It was a funny wilderness in the Valley—his favorite swimming hole was fed by a movie studio’s film-development lab. “Yeah, I used to swim in the outfall,” he said, cracking up.

Then he discovered climbing. In the 1950s, age 16, Chouinard drove to Wyoming and climbed Gannett Peak, the state’s highest mountain. Soon he met other young climbers, like Royal Robbins and Tom Frost, and migrated to Yosemite, where he lived off scraps—at one point, tins of cat food—and made first ascents up the granite walls. “In the ’60s, it was kind of the height of the fossil-fuel age,” he said. “You could get a part-time job anytime you felt like it. Gas was 25 cents a gallon. You could buy a used car for 20 bucks. Camping was free. It was pretty easygoing.”

Chouinard and his friends would transform rock climbing, helping to bring about the modern “clean” version, where you no longer hammer iron spikes into the cracks to aid your progress. This led to athletes like Caldwell, a Patagonia “climbing ambassador,” pulling off accomplishments no one thought possible—like the first free climb of Yosemite’s Dawn Wall. Chouinard also met his wife of 47 years, Malinda, in Yosemite. At the time, she was a climber who worked as a weekend cabin maid. According to Chouinard, the moment that clinched it was a day they were hanging out and Malinda saw some women pull up and throw a beer can out the window. She told them to pick it up. They gave her the finger. Malinda went over, tore the license plate off their car with her bare hands, and turned it in to the rangers’ office. Chouinard was in love.

Patagonia got its start as Chouinard Equipment, selling the climbing gear that Yvon was making for his friends. The first apparel was equally functional, designed to resist rock: sturdy corduroy trousers, stiff rugby shirts like the ones Yvon brought back from a climbing trip in Scotland. When the clothing started to take off, they decided to separate the garments from the gear; they just needed a good name. As Chouinard explained: “To most people, especially then, Patagonia was a name like Timbuktu or Shangri-la—far-off, interesting, not quite on the map.”

These days, that “far-off” land is thriving. With Marcario at the company, revenue and profits have quadrupled. In addition to clothing, the company produces films, runs a food business, even has a venture-capital fund to invest in eco-friendly start-ups; one, Bureo, makes skateboards and sunglasses from former fishing nets. Along the way, Patagonia began donating 1 percent of its sales to environmental groups—$89 million as of April 2017—and led the garment industry in cleaning up its supply chains, demanding better practices from factories overseas. (Chouinard, his wife, and their two adult children remain the sole owners of Patagonia.)

https://www.gq.com/story/patagonia-versus-donald-trump?mbid=synd_digg

Tell Starbucks: Don’t trash our planet with plastic | Greenpeace

starbucks on the hudson

Each minute the equivalent of a garbage truck full of plastic ends up in the ocean, so why do 4 billion plastic line Starbucks paper cups get thrown away every year along with masses of it single-use plastic lids, straws, and culturally?

Starbucks is part of the global plastic problem: tell the coffee giant to stop trashing our planet with plastic!

By 2050 the world’s oceans are projected to have more plastic than fish. Yet Starbucks has no plan to reduce it’s plastic trash and continues to serve paper coffee cups that are nearly impossible to recycle because of the plastic lining.

The sheer amount of plastic trash created by Starbucks is out of control – and it’s ending up in the waterways and other fragile ecosystems.

In 2008, Starbucks said it would serve a 100% recyclable paper cup and increase reusables to 25% by 2015. To date it has not done either.

It’s time for Starbucks to live up to its promises.

https://engage.us.greenpeace.org/onlineactions/4TqezR4pHEO4LxfSzpanMA2?emci=28b6497f-0917-e811-80c2-00155da7a518&emdi=c0e11f4d-d117-e811-80c2-00155da7a518&fn=Nancy&ln=Keiter&em=nackpets%40gmail.com&pc=&hp=5555555555&mp=&utm_source=ea&utm_medium=email&utm_campaign=180222_starbucks_plastics_email1(ns)&sourceid=1001273

Demand Tyson Foods Stop Polluting Waterways

Tyson Foods has been linked to the biggest dead zone in the Gulf of Mexico, but refuses to clean up its pollution. Sign the petition below to demand reduced pollution in our waterways.

Source: Demand Tyson Foods Stop Polluting Waterways

Supermarkets: Stop burning Paraguay’s forests for summer BBQs! – Rainforest Rescue

The forests of the Paraguayan Chaco are being cleared and converted into charcoal which is exported to Europe and the USA. This threatens endangered species and one of the last indigenous peoples living Untouched by this industrial society. Tell European supermarkets to stop selling charcoal made from this destruction of Paraguay’s forests.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1103/supermarkets-stop-burning-paraguays-forests-for-summer-bbqs

Get cocoa plantations out of Côte d’Ivoire’s national parks! – Rainforest Rescue

Cote d’lovire was once a Tropical Paradise, and now its last remaining patches of rainforests are being destroyed for cocoa plantations – not even national parks are safe. The major chocolate producers have turned a blind eye to the ruthless exploitation. Tell Mars and other manufacturers to get the rainforest out of our chocolate!

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1109/get-cocoa-plantations-out-of-cote-divoires-national-parks

An EU seal for illegal timber from Vietnam? NO! – Rainforest Rescue

Illegal Timber from Southeast Asia – laundered with and E U seal of approval? This could soon become reality. The EU is preparing a trade deal on tropical timber with Vietnam, a hotbed of timber trafficking. Tell the EU that Vietnam does not deserve a trade agreement until it has cleaned up its act.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1106/an-eu-seal-for-illegal-timber-from-vietnam-no

An EU seal for illegal timber from Vietnam? NO! – Rainforest Rescue

Illegal Timber from Southeast Asia – laundered with and E U seal of approval? This could soon become reality. The EU is preparing a trade deal on tropical timber with Vietnam, a hotbed of timber trafficking. Tell the EU that Vietnam does not deserve a trade agreement until it has cleaned up its act.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1106/an-eu-seal-for-illegal-timber-from-vietnam-no

Stop felling Canada’s centuries-old forest giants for lumber! – Rainforest Rescue

The temperate rainforests of British Columbia are one of the rarest ecosystems on the planet, but that’s not stopping Canadian loggers: 90 percent of Vancouver ancient giants have already been felled. Tell British Columbia’s provincial government of to stop the destruction and protect the remaining from the forest

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1120/stop-felling-canadas-centuries-old-forest-giants-for-lumber

Stop the assault on Earth’s green lung! – Rainforest Rescue

The indigenous people of the Amazon under siege – in Brazil,Ecuador, Peru and neighboring countries. The rainforest home is being destroyed. Please add your voice to indigenous peoples’ appeal to the UN and South American governments to stop the destruction of the largest and most biodiverse ecosystem on the planet.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1110/stop-the-assault-on-earths-green-lung

Stop the destruction of 47,000 km² of Amazon rainforest! – Rainforest Rescue

Brazil’s beleaguered president Temer wants to open up face swathe of protected rainforest – an area the size of Denmark -to mining and industrial agriculture. With this gift to his cronies, he is hoping to keep himself in office and out of prison for corruption on a grand scale.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1107/stop-the-destruction-of-47000-km2-of-amazon-rainforest

Samsung, get out of Papua’s rainforests! – Rainforest Rescue

Smartphones are not the only things going up in flames in the Samsung business empire: the group recently launched a joint venture with Korindo, a palm oil company notororious for slashing and burning Papua’s rainforests.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1105/samsung-get-out-of-papuas-rainforests

Rainforest to be felled with Norwegian money? Stop it! – Rainforest Rescue

The Norwegian government is considering whether to finance industrial logging in the Democratic Republic of the Congo. Twenty million hecheres of virgin rainforest could be given up to the logging industry. Trade and tropical timber destroys the livelihoods of humans and animals and fuels climate change.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1102/rainforest-to-be-felled-with-norwegian-money-stop-it

Unilever: stop destroying mangroves for convenience food! – Rainforest Rescue

Unilever’s “substantial palm oil” is an empty promise. It’s palm oil supplier Wilmar, is destroying the largest mangrove forest in Indonesia and this is the only one of many such cases. Tell Unilever how to get palm oil out of its products and stop profiting from the destruction of nature.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1101/unilever-stop-destroying-mangroves-for-convenience-food

Save Białowieża, Poland’s last primeval forest! – Rainforest Rescue

there is nothing quite like Bialowieza forest in Poland. Untouched by humans for centuries, it is a treasure trove of biodiversity – but now loggers are firing up there chainsaws. Tell Portland’s government and you and ESC 02 stop the destruction of one of Europe’s last primeval Forests.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1100/save-bialowieza-polands-last-primeval-forest

Trashing rainforest for biofuel? A TOTAL disaster! – Rainforest Rescue

French oil multinational Total is stepping up its resilience on palm oil and wants to build a “biorefinery” in Marseilles to meet allegedly growing demand for diesel fuel – and this in spite of the European Parliament’s call for biofuels from palm oil to be phased out.

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1096/trashing-rainforest-for-biofuel-a-total-disaster

Stop destroying our national park: no IFC investment in Dangote! – Rainforest Rescue

Conservationist Odey Oyama is standing in an area that was once dense rainforest – part of cross river National Park in Nigeria. Industrial conglomerate Dangote clear the land for a pineapple plantation. Odey accuses Dangote of violating Nigeria law: “Plantations have no business in a national park!”

https://www.rainforest-rescue.org/petitions/1095/stop-destroying-our-national-park-no-ifc-investment-in-dangote

Petition update · Public Hearing Notice · Change.org

Stop a Factory Farm from Coming to Montague

3K supporters
Petition update
Public Hearing Notice
Montague, MI

Jan 2, 2018 — The petition has made so much progress in the last month and a half! A public hearing has been scheduled for January 10th at the Montague High School Auditorium with the Michigan Department of Environmental Quality. From 6-7 PM there will be a Question and Answer session and from 7-8 PM the people of the community will be allowed to share their comments to the DEQ.
We want to have as many people as possible in attendance to send a strong message to Marsh Swine Farm and the DEQ that we do NOT want the permit granted. All are welcome to attend!

2,730 have signed. Let’s get to 5,000. 
Marsh Swine Farm: Stop a Factory Farm…

https://www.change.org/p/marsh-swine-farm-stop-a-factory-farm-from-coming-to-montague?recruiter=44240641&utm_source=share_petition&utm_medium=copylink&utm_campaign=share_petition&utm_term=218886

© 2018, Change.org, Inc.Certified B Corporation

Stop the Expansion of Military Overflights in the Greater Gila Bioregion – WildEarth Guardians : Stop the Expansion of Military Overflights in the Greater Gila Bioregion


https://secure3.convio.net/wg/site/Advocacy;jsessionid=00000000.app311b?pagename=homepage&page=UserAction&id=925&autologin=true&NONCE_TOKEN=4064B8DFDF48F0557EBE47AF4AE3B14B#.WhCMQRZOmpa

Snarky bamboo TP company gives 50% of its profits to toilet, water, & sanitation projects : TreeHugger


https://www.treehugger.com/green-home/snarky-bamboo-toilet-paper-company-gives-50-its-profits-toilet-water-sanitation-projects.html

Life-saving Weather Forecast Cost $3 a Person Annually Trump Wants to Slash Them

Trump wants to cripple storm forecasting just when it’s getting good — and we need it most.

By Eric Holthaus on Oct 23, 2017

As Hurricane Harvey roared toward the Texas coast in late August, weather models showed something that forecasters had never seen before: predictions of four feet of rainfall in the Houston area over five days — a year’s worth of rain in less than a week.

“I’ve been doing this stuff for almost 50 years,” says Bill Read, a former director of the National Hurricane Center who lives in Houston. “The rainfall amounts … I didn’t believe ‘em. 50-inch-plus rains — I’ve never seen a model forecast like that anywhere close to accurate.

“Lo and behold, we had it.”

That unbelievable-but-accurate rain forecast is just one example of the great leap forward in storm forecasting made possible by major improvements in instruments, satellite data, and computer models. These advancements are happening exactly when we need them to — as a warmer, wetter atmosphere produces more supercharged storms, intense droughts, massive wildfires, and widespread flooding, threatening lives and property.

And yet the Trump administration’s climate denial and proposed cuts threaten these advances, spreading turmoil in the very agencies that can predict disasters better than ever. The president’s budget proposal would slash the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s budget by 16 percent, including 6 percent from the National Weather Service.

Besides hampering climate research, the cuts would jeopardize satellite programs and other forecasting tools — as well as threaten the jobs of forecasters themselves. And they may undermine bipartisan legislation Trump himself signed earlier this year that mandates key steps to improve the nation’s ability to predict disasters before they happen.

Billy Raney and Donna Raney climb over the wreckage of what’s left of their apartment after Hurricane Harvey destroyed it on August 26, 2017 in Rockport, Texas. Joe Raedle/Getty Images

It’s hard to overstate how backward that seems after the hurricane season we’ve just witnessed, as well as the deadly wildfires in California, the climate-charged droughts and deluges and, well, you name it. Just when we need forecasting to be better than ever — and need our forecasters to be able to go even further, using those predictions in ways that protect people’s lives and livelihoods — the Trump administration wants to cut back?

Here’s how far we’ve come in forecasting: Three-day hurricane forecasts are now nearly as accurate as one-day forecasts were when Katrina struck 12 years ago. Even routine, “will it rain this weekend?” forecasts are better today than you probably realize. A 2015 paper in the journal Nature called the advancements a “quiet revolution,” both because they’ve gone relatively unnoticed by the general public, and because it’s been cheap. The National Weather Service, an agency of the U.S. government, costs taxpayers about $3 per person each year.

Still, knowing what the weather is going to do tomorrow and understanding how best to warn the public about potential risks are two different things. The first is all about physics; the other is about psychology, human behavior, social interaction, the built environment, and much more. You can guess which is easier.

Forecasts for Hurricane Harvey’s rainfall totals might have been stunningly accurate, but the floodwaters still surprised thousands of people. Days after Harvey’s rains ended, first responders in towns throughout southeast Texas were still rescuing families stranded by rising waters that flowed downstream toward the Gulf.

In the interest of saving lives, forecasters have started moving from simply predicting the weather to attempting to predict the consequences. Call it impact forecasting, an attempt to say what will happen after the rain hits the ground. Scientists hope to answer questions like: Where will water accumulate? Where will floodwaters head? How will it affect people?

The next step is using those “impact forecasts” to get people to safety. Researchers are working to build customized, real-time personal prediction tools that could tell people if their house is likely to flood, or how long they might go without power. There’s also a drive to create easier to understand warning systems, making better use of the latest communication tools and social media.

Besides getting people out of harm’s way, better warning systems could help by letting nonprofits seek donations in advance of a devastating storm, for instance, so they could provide relief more quickly. And they could help public officials do a better job of prepping for the worst.

Residents affected by Hurricane Maria wait in line for fuel donated by the Fuel Relief Fund in the municipality of Orocovis, outside San Juan, Puerto Rico. REUTERS / Shannon Stapleton

The need for this new branch of forecasting was highlighted during the height of Harvey’s rains, when the National Weather Service issued a bulletin that put the deluge in stark terms: “This event is unprecedented & all impacts are unknown & beyond anything experienced.”

“This was a good step forward,” says Kim Klockow, a meteorologist and behavioral scientist at the University of Oklahoma who supports the effort to develop impact forecasting. “It admitted something very important,” Klockow says — namely, that the system we have for warning people isn’t good enough.

In fact, experts say the best early-warning systems are ones that start years before the wind picks up and raindrops begin to fall, alerting people who live in vulnerable areas who might be prone to more threats in a climate-charged world.

Following Harvey, Klockow was named to a team of external scientists who will study the National Weather Service’s performance and look for ways to improve. They could start with better flood warnings, she says. “It’s like peering into a black box,” she says. “We give people almost nothing.”

In part, that’s a consequence of insufficient flood-zone maps. Even though rainstorms are getting more intense as the climate warms, FEMA sticks to historical flood data to determine which neighborhoods are required to purchase flood insurance — a policy that’s already leading to skyrocketing losses from floods. A recent study showed that 75 percent of the flood losses in Houston between 1999 and 2009 fell outside designated 100-year flood zones.

If residents don’t know their home is at risk of flooding, they’re less likely to consider that it might, even when a major storm is forecast. So it’s no surprise that, after floods, people report being caught by surprise.

How to keep them from getting surprised? Talk plainly.

There’s evidence that giving people unambiguous information can help move them to action. Recent research has shown that people often need to see the storm with their own eyes before they take cover. They need to see neighbors boarding up their houses before they do the same.

Read, the former National Hurricane Center director, says the same thing applies to him, despite his years of forecasting experience. “Most people, including myself if I’m really honest about it, are in denial that the bad thing will happen to you.”

Before Hurricane Katrina hit the New Orleans area in 2005, the National Weather Service issued a blunt statement that promised “certain death” should anyone be trapped outside unprotected. A post-storm analysis credited that warning with spurring an evacuation rate of more than 90 percent. Read says that’s why the Weather Service is shifting its focus toward making impending storms feel as real as possible to those in its path.

Forecasters need to “personalize the threat,” he says.

Klockow says that she’d like to see flood warnings take a personal approach, too. During a storm, an overlay in Google Street View could show you how high the water is rising in your neighborhood and re-route you away from flooded roads to get you home safely.

The tools to make that happen already exist. Several companies and local governments have already developed mapping tools that to warn of impending floods. North Carolina’s Flood Inundation Mapping and Alert Network relies on 500 measurement stations across the state that transmit their readings back to a central database. When conditions are ripe for flooding, the system’s software estimates possible consequences and alerts emergency managers.

This budding technology, integrated with databases of rescue supplies, could help FEMA figure out where to put aid and supplies before they’re needed.

Other organizations are working on an initiative called “forecast-based financing.” The idea is to allocate money for clearing out storm drains, as well as distributing first aid and water filtration systems, in the days ahead of a storm. Already tested in Uganda, Peru, Bangladesh and other countries, this innovation is now in the process of being scaled up worldwide. It could help organizations like the American Red Cross craft appeals for donations in advance, instead of relying on scenes of devastation after disaster strikes.


Ramon Sostre stands in front of his damaged house after Hurricane Maria destroyed the town’s bridge in San Lorenzo, Morovis, Puerto Rico. REUTERS / Shannon Stapleton

All of these efforts and ideas show a lot of promise. Yet even as forecasters have come to understand the importance of developing better advance-warning techniques, their ability to undertake those efforts is being undercut by a White House hostile to funding science.

Earlier this year, along with recommending that Congress gut funding for NOAA, President Trump proposed an 11 percent cut from the National Science Foundation’s budget, slashing funds from the institution behind much of the country’s basic scientific research. If Congress agrees, it would be the first budget cut in the foundation’s 67-year history.

At the National Weather Service, the Washington Post recently reported that the agency couldn’t fill 216 vacant positions as a result of a Trump-imposed hiring freeze. As a result, meteorologists were working double shifts when hurricane after hurricane hit last month and covering for each other from afar.

A forecast center in Maryland, for example, provided days of backup to the National Hurricane Center as hurricanes spun toward shore. National Weather Service meteorologists at the San Juan, Puerto Rico, office complained of “extreme fatigue.” Colleagues in Texas stepped in to give them breaks.

The threat of budget cuts is already crimping federally funded disaster research. A few days after Harvey struck Texas, the Colorado-based National Center for Atmospheric Research — one of the country’s top meteorological research institutions — cut entire sections of its staff focused on the human dimensions of disasters, including impact forecasting.

In an all-staff meeting on Aug. 30, the center’s director explained that the anticipation of tighter budgets forced the decision.

Antonio Busalacchi, president of the University Corporation for Atmospheric Research, which oversees the center, called the cuts “strategic reinvestments” in a statement to Grist. He said the money saved would be reallocated to “the priority areas of computer models, observing tools, and supercomputing.”

But researchers at the center, called NCAR, say the layoffs will hurt efforts to make forecasts more human-focused and effective.

“Our whole group was cut,” says Emily Laidlaw, an environmental scientist at NCAR, whose work focuses on understanding what puts people at risk from climate change and climate-related disasters. “I would absolutely say that these cuts make people less safe.”

Read, the former hurricane center chief, says increases in supercomputing power shouldn’t come at the expense of developing forecasts that work better for people.

“You can’t drop one for the other,” he says.

The cuts to the National Center for Atmospheric Research will result in the loss of 18 jobs. That may not sound like a lot, but consider that these were some of the only scientists in the United States working to prepare our country’s system for predicting disasters in an era of rapid change.

In that context, the recent revolution in meteorology and pitfalls in preparedness become a powerful metaphor: We know that if we stick to our current course, the future will be bleak. Acting on the forecast of a warmer planet in a way that helps us to usher in a safer and more prosperous future is completely possible, and the stakes keep getting higher.

One-third of the U.S. economy, some $3 trillion per year, is subject to fluctuations in the weather, and millions of people endure weather disasters every year — a number that keeps going up as climate change boosts the frequency and intensity of storms.

Despite excellent weather forecasts, hundreds of people have lost their lives, and billions of dollars in economic value have been lost during this year’s record-breaking hurricane season. In some especially hard-hit places, like Barbuda, Dominica, Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands, recovery will take years, or longer.

But it doesn’t have to be this way. Get people out of a hurricane’s path, put aid workers and supplies in the right place, and a raging storm might not lead to a catastrophe.

We are living in a golden age for meteorology, but we haven’t yet mastered what really matters: knowing in advance exactly how specific extreme weather events are likely to affect our lives. Getting that right could usher in a new era of disaster prevention, rather than the current model of Disaster Response.
A Beacon in the Smog®

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Petition: Join 1000 Cities: Reject Fossil Fuels and Move to 100% Renewable Energy


https://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/403/755/000/

This Startup Is Making Plastic Packaging You Can Eat Instead of Throwing Out Made of Seaweed (And It’s Good for You Too)! (VIDEO) | One Green Planet

 

 

 

Aleksandra Pajda
October 10, 2017

From the perspective of waste management, an ice cream cone is a perfect invention – the thing that is devised to hold your ice cream is edible as well! So what if the containers or packaging our food came in could all be just that – edible? There is a company that decided to turn exactly that idea into reality – and their seaweed packaging can be eaten just like anything that is packed inside it.

Evoware is an Indonesia-based startup behind a new kind of packaging that is perfectly good to eat – but which also naturally biodegrades if you do not want to snack on it once your meal is over. “We want to create a cleaner world by stopping plastic waste from the root,” David Christian, co-founder of Evoware, told Fast Company.

Christian’s home country is second on the list of countries that create the most plastic pollution that ends up in the oceans and four Indonesian rivers are among those most polluted in the world. Looking from that perspective, it is very obvious that something has to be done about our plastic packaging obsession – and the company is a step in a right direction.

 

 

Seaweed, the material from which Evoware’s packaging is created, is obviously superior to plastic in a number of ways – it does not create non-biodegradable waste, it sucks up carbon dioxide while growing, it is grown without fertilizers, water, or any other resources. In fact, seaweed farmers in Indonesia are currently producing more product than they can sell, Fast Company reports, and they struggle to make a living.

While the details of the production process are confidential, the Evoware seaweed is tested for food safety and made into food packaging that can be eaten and dissolves in hot water without the use of chemicals. And the product is actually also nutritious since seaweed is high in fiber and vitamins – and it is also halal.

 

The Evoware packaging is already being tested – and tasted – for example at a food festival in Ubud, Bali, where a waffle vendor Bruxel Waffle is one of the early customers using the new packaging. So far, the seaweed product is more expensive to make than plastic packaging – but the costs will be lower as the company gets from pilot production to full-scale manufacturing. Hopefully, it will find many fans – and we will all have a chance to test it in the future.
http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/startup-making-edible-packaging/?utm_source=Green+Monster+Mailing+List&utm_campaign=44f400e027-NEWSLETTER_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_bbf62ddf34-44f400e027-106049477

To learn more about Evoware, http://www.onegreenplanet.org/news/startup-making-edible-packaging/?utm_source=Green+Monster+Mailing+List&utm_campaign=44f400e027-NEWSLETTER_EMAIL_CAMPAIGN&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_bbf62ddf34-44f400e027-106049477

To find out how to use less plastic in your everyday life, check out One Green Planet’s #CrushPlastic campaign!

Petition: Ask Cigarette Companies to Switch to Biodegradable Filters!


http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/917/098/576/

Petition: Ban all plastic bags in the UK, United Kingdom


http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/206/656/934/

Petition: Canada: Protect Lakes and Rivers from Raw Sewage and Invest Immediately in Waste Water Management, Canada


http://www.thepetitionsite.com/takeaction/607/690/518/

Less Waste Makes for a Happy Planet: Simple Guide to Waste-Free Grocery Shopping | One Green Planet


http://www.onegreenplanet.org/environment/simple-guide-to-waste-free-grocery-shopping/