In the Ivory Coast, where I recently visited, many poor rural people grow cocoa. One way to expand its economy is to produce more cocoa at the expense of tropical rain forests, which ultimately destroys the economy because forests are a major source of rainfall. Extended droughts caused by deforestation reveal that kind of growth is self-defeating. We need a more sophisticated approach, with the economy becoming a wholly owned subsidiary of ecology, not the other way around.
Sean Russell, 24, of Englewood, Florida, was exposed to ocean wonders in junior marine conservation summer camps and 4-H programs. Volunteering with Mote Marine Laboratory’s dolphin research program, in Sarasota, Russell was struck by how improperly discarded fishing line entangled and killed dolphins and other wildlife. At 16, he launched the Stow It—Don’t Throw It Project to promote portable receptacles made from repurposed tennis ball containers for anglers to stash used fishing line for later safe disposal on shore. More than 21,000 containers have been distributed nationwide to date.
participating in his production.
“I appealed to classmates by asking, ‘How do you want to be remembered? Why not choose to be viewed positively, as leaders?’” says Gregory, who later became a spokesperson for NO BULL Challenge. To date, the challenge has received 600 submissions, garnering 23 million impressions through digital and social media, the vehicles of cyberbullies. A recent graduate of Dayton, Ohio’s Wright State University, Gregory has spoken to about 45,000 students in 27 states in school assemblies.
The Non GMO Project is sponsoring National Non-GMO Month in October. Observed since 2010, the program seeks to increase education and awareness about the growing presence of unlabeled genetically modified (GM/GMO) food products and ingredients.
The Meditate the Vote – the Real Conversation segment is the brainchild of the globally broadcast America Meditating radio show (BlogTalkRadio.com/AmericaMeditating), which features prominent thought leaders sharing methods for personal development.
The dangerous practice of fracking (hydraulic fracturing), which combines volumes of toxic chemicals and fresh water to bore for natural gas, has spread to 21 states in the Northeast, Mid-Atlantic and Midwest, as well as Colorado, Texas and California. A particularly intensive drilling area is the Marcellus Shale region, a 600-mile-long bedrock layer up to a mile below the Earth’s surface that includes parts of New York, Pennsylvania, West Virginia and Ohio. Citizens in these and surrounding states are sounding alarms.
At age 6, climate change activist Xiuhtezcatl Martinez gave his first speech to a packed crowd in his hometown of Boulder, Colorado. Raised in the Aztec tradition, he was taught that as indigenous people, they are descendants of the land and inherit a duty to protect it.
“I felt such sadness that my generation inherited this crisis to clean up. That night, I saw that those emotions could be channeled into action and my voice could make a difference,” says Martinez, founder and youth director of the nonprofit Earth Guardians.
As much as 40 percent of food produced in the U.S. is wasted, even as one in six Americans goes hungry. Instead of feeding people better, we are feeding the city dump. Of all types of trash, food consumes the most space in our municipal landfills, followed by plastic and paper. Rotting food then releases harmful methane, a greenhouse gas 20 times more potent than carbon dioxide.
Amidst the growing pollinator crisis and due to public pressure, Aldi Süd, the German supermarket chain with stores in the U.S., has become the first major European retailer to ban pesticides toxic to bees, including the neonicotinoids imidacloprid, clothianidin and thiamethoxam, from fruits and vegetables produced for their stores. Starting in January, Aldi produce suppliers have had to ensure their cultivation practices exclude eight pesticides identified as toxic to bees. Other retailers in the U.S. and Europe are also beginning to shun bee-toxic pesticides.
Caring Homes Sought for Aging and Abandoned Horses An estimated 9 million horses in the U.S. are used for racing, show, informal competitions, breeding, recreation, work and other activities. Many need a new home when they start to slow down physically or when an owner’s finances become tight. Horses need space to run, require hoof care and when injured or ill, may require costly procedures.