When I was very young, I had a passion for saving the natural environment, a lot of televised messages encouraging people to cut down on the greenhouse effect (which was common knowledge since grade school, why has it taken so long to become a Thing?) by commuting or walking--and, rather protective parents would would never let me do that because
1. we lived in the city where it was very polluted and they only wanted me breathing the (not yet CFC free) air conditioning inside the car or room to ensure that the air we breathed was clean
2. we lived in a climate where it's usually warm, so add sweat and UV rays to the city grime flying about, and
3. muggers (eventually, terrorists too)
So, I grew up learning about the world by being shut up in a magic car-shaped capsule with a movie playing outside the window of going places, and didn't get a sense of where anything in my city really was located relative to each other until my twenties.
Walking's one of my favorite things to do, now. People who know how much I walk around on weekends (a lot) and why (just because) kind of break past their "oh how pedestrian" stigma and into "this person is not quite sane and insists upon doing everything the hard way" stigma.
The city in which I walk does still have smog, the weather still does whatever it's going to do and doesn't care what I've dressed to prepare for, and I don't have more than a whistle to keep off any harmful people that I have never encountered thank the stars (one day before then I should get a 3000-lumen flashlight, or one of those keychains shaped like spiked brass knuckles).
But I pass by the most interesting things, little hole-in-the-wall bakeshops or ice cream parlors, or suspiciously well-decorated alleyways that open up into miniature other countries.
What have you found to be the pro's and con's of walking?
In an estimated 20 years, I've heard, it evens out...you could even sell some of the energy collected from solar power, sell it back to the government. Decently-made panels last longer than it would take for them to pay for themselves, of course.
I've also read of solar panel technology still developing, so perhaps in a few years there would be more lightweight solar panels that are cheaper to produce, or at least that cheapen old-school solar panels that you can snap up as they would still be functioning? Here's hoping, anyway. I'd like to invest in solar energy, too, one day.
So. I own the DVD set of BBC's Blue Planet documentary about oceanic wildlife in the reefs and deep sea and arctic waters, and it includes the "Deep Trouble" mini-documentary in the extra features that shows how fishers are A.) catching fish too young to breed for a market where they'll be eaten, which is not sustainable, and B.) catching new species of fish now accessible by advanced methods of fishing (which amounts to basically scraping the ocean floor and its reefs...which is also not sustainable.)
And I've read the Time magazine article about how yellow fin tuna (or is it blue fin tuna?) are practically an endangered species--I think this was also covered in the "Deep Trouble" documentary I mentioned above.
Still, when I pull into the canned goods aisle at the grocery store, I'm faced with shelves upon shelves of canned tuna fish. I have to squint to find sardines. Canned mackarel is an urban legend to me. There is just always so much tuna in stock, and I suspect that there's a high turnover rate of produce, even canned... even though I only buy one can that day, because I do, because it's frankly the most value for my money when it comes to how much meat is actually in there and what nutrients (I've read that) there are. When it's raw or treated like with sushi or sashimi, I can't help that it's my favorite.
But of course I am aware of the implications of each purchase, and feel like I've let the world down even a little bit.
So far, I've done my best to switch to tilapia, which is a freshwater cultivated fish local to my area--and it can even be a bit of a pest, breeding the easy way it does. Its tolerance for brackish low water qualities make it a fish for the "lower class" but I don't care because I frankly think it's the most delicious cooked fish to grace any pescatarian's plate (although I'm not pescetarian myself).
Any other suggestions? If eel or catfish were more available, I'd go for that as well, although apparently in some parts of the world culinary eels are becoming a protected species...?
Maria Konnikova recently wrote up this article for the New Yorker about why people's opinions don't change on subjects that...erm...put it this way...are not a matter of opinion.
Global warming is even one of the examples or case studies, vaccinations are another...
I think of it as the fact-checking difference between gravity and evolution. Maybe physicists haven't unified some theory with some other yet in regards to gravity...but, any layperson and drop a pebble a hundred times and see that it falls every single time. On the other hand, it took a lot of observation and rationalization to come up with the theory of evolution. So, man-made climate change isn't something that hits people as an immediate consequence.
Add to that, the adjustments that are required of people, in businesses and in daily life, are too large and inconvenient for most people to take. Therefore, the reaction would be that they just don't believe in this high-faluting theory at all. There might even be a bit of the philosophical prisoner's dilemma thrown in: not only would all the inconveniences they take on have no discernible result, but if everybody else continues to live comfortably and destroy the planet anyway then better to be one of those types of people even if what they do does have an effect.
Nobody has more at stake, or would be in the most affected (if not the best) position to decide whether to abort or not--than the one who is actually pregnant. Why would somebody bypass the autonomy and perspective of the one who is pregnant, in favor of presuming to voice for the rights of the voiceless embryo or fetus? Is it to impose "proper" consequences of not using contraception? If it's down to human life, well quality of life is a large aspect of human life--but why rather bring another person into this world just because of its potential, rather than continue to respect the quality of life aspired to by the pregnant person?
Nobody should force people to have abortions who don't want to have abortions, and, by the same rule, nobody should force somebody to give birth who doesn't want to give birth. Both would be acts of oppression, both violate the autonomy of a person's own body, and both are acts of violence. Let each individual make the choice. Let it be an option. The worst thing someone can do is universalize their personal experience: "my rights end where yours begin", has anyone heard of that? The saying asserts a mutual respect for boundaries.
I found an all-purpose cleaner called Plantex Green Organic Ultimate Solution with a little seal that says it's "green choice certified NELP-GCP PRP 2010002" whatever that means. It has the texture of liquid soap, claims to be antibacterial, and smells quite nice, but the ingredients list is terribly unhelpful because it only says: Plant extracts, Plant enzymes, Surfactant, and Fragrance.
Unfortunately, it doesn't clean very effectively either... it gets there eventually, but only after three times over with some hard scrubbing.
Why palm sugar is a better alternative to processed sugar.
Palm sugar is a nutrient-rich, low-glycemic crystalline sweetener that looks, tastes, dissolves and melts almost exactly like sugar, but it's completely natural and unrefined. It's acquired from palm flowers growing high up and out of reach by most people, then they are opened to collect their liquid flower nectar. This nectar is then air-dried to form a crystalline sugar that's naturally brown in color and naturally rich in a number of key minerals, vitamins and phytonutrients, including potassium, zinc, iron, and vitamins B1, B2, B3 and B6.
Like refined and bleached sugar it is far superior. So the nutrients are still there in a raw sugar crystal form or made into a golden liquid like honey called palm syrup a rare commodity made by a small company ecolurve that hold the secrets to this recipe. Flavors included in their range are cinnamon and pandan a 100% natural healthy product.