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Lindenheart Post number 25746 Posted: 17th July 2019     Subject:
I think Morgana asked at the beginning of the thread what we do to be environmental friendly.

I'm in Germany, so here recycling is a big thing. We recycle glass, plastic, paper, organic waste (I don't have a garden or else I'd have a compost heap) and drink cans.
I try to avoid plastic whenever possible, which with a limited budget is not easy. I make my own washing "powder" from Chestnuts, buy clothes and books and DVD mostly second hand, try to avoid buying from Amazon and donate things I don't need anymore to second hand shops. I plant bee-friendly wildflowers and herbs on my balcony, try to reuse shower or bathwater when possible. Occasionally my flatmate and I do the odd clean-up session in our immediate neighbourhood where we pick up the trash.

It's not much and I'm always looking for more ideas and things I can do without spending too much money. So, if you guys have any tips, I'll be happy to hear them. [Very happy]
Morgana Post number 25751 Posted: 17th July 2019     Subject:
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Thanks for sharing Lindenheart... washing powder from Chestnuts?? I have never heard of that before. Sounds intriguing...
Lindenheart Post number 25752 Posted: 18th July 2019     Subject:
It's not exactly washing powder, but it does the job nicely. Here is a page that explains the use of chestnuts for washing really well: Make-laundry-detergent-out-of-chestnuts

I let my chestnuts soak in water for a few hours before I cut them, it's easier to remove the shell that way. I find the shredded chestnut pieces easier to store, so I set them out to dry in the oven on a low temperature for an hour or so, then let them cool. I store them in old jars from instant coffee and use 3-4 tablespoon full for each washing. I just add about a glass full of warm water and let it soak for half an hour, then I pour the liquid through a sieve. You can add a bit of vinegar to make the washing a bit more fluffy and some drops of essential oil for scent. Just don't use it on white clothes, it can turn them a bit grey but otherwise it works well.

It's cheaper than buying Indian soap nuts. Plus exporting the soap nuts to America and Europe, makes the nuts too expensive for locals.
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25784 Posted: 30th July 2019     Subject: Earth's 2019 resources 'budget' spent by July 29
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Mankind will have used up its allowance of natural resources such as water, soil and clean air for all of 2019 by Monday, a report said.

The so-called Earth Overshoot Day has moved up by two months over the past 20 years and this year's date is the earliest ever, the study by the Global Footprint Network said.

The equivalent of 1.75 planets would be required to produce enough to meet humanity's needs at current consumption rates.

"Earth Overshoot Day falling on July 29 means that humanity is currently using nature 1.75 times faster than our planet's ecosystems can regenerate. This is akin to using 1.75 Earths," the environmental group, which is headquartered in Oakland, California, said in a statement.

"The costs of this global ecological overspending are becoming increasingly evident in the form of deforestation, soil erosion, biodiversity loss, or the buildup of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere. The latter leads to climate change and more frequent extreme weather events," it added.

Calculated since 1986, the grim milestone has arrived earlier each year. ... nt-july.html
ChristopherBlackwell Post number 25785 Posted: 30th July 2019     Subject: Mike
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One of the many reasons that I believe that mankind is heading for its own extinction, much sooner than most people might think. We are not taking these changes near seriously as we should, so it is unlikely that we will change enough and in time to do any good. Naturally we have to keep trying even so.


Wisdom is what is left after you have done all the dumb stuff
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25794 Posted: 5th August 2019     Subject: The front line of environmental violence
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Environmental defenders on the front line of natural resource conflict are being killed at an alarming rate, according to a University of Queensland study.

According to UQ School of Biological Sciences researcher Dr. Nathalie Butt, the 1558 deaths recorded between 2002 and 2017 were largely due to external demand for the very resources they were trying to protect.

"The number of reported deaths of environmental defenders has increased, as well as the number of countries where they occur," Dr. Butt said.

"Environmental defenders help protect land, forests, water and other natural resources.

"They can be anyone—community activists, lawyers, journalists, members of social movements, NGO staff and Indigenous people—anyone who resists violence.

"And importantly, Indigenous peoples are dying in higher numbers than any other group."

The reasons for the fatal violence are mainly related to conflict over natural resources, such as water, timber, land for agriculture or development, or minerals.

A third of all deaths between 2014 and 2017—more than 230—were linked to the mining and agribusiness sectors.

"Although conflict over natural resources is the underlying cause of the violence, spatial analyses showed corruption was the key correlate for the killings," Dr. Butt said. ... iolence.html
ChristopherBlackwell Post number 25799 Posted: 7th August 2019     Subject: A shame that we do not talk of corporatemurder of activists
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It is a shame we do not shine more light on the corporate murder of activists that get in the way of their business profits. Face it killing ecological activists is a profitable business. Tracing where the money comes from would lead to pointing out the corporate criminals that hired the killers. Same goes for most of government corruption, it is usually financed by those that benefit, including corporations and wealthy people. Poor people don't have the money that big time corruption and crimes require. How many poor people have ever bought a politician, or got any law passed, or removed.

Wisdom is what is left after you have done all the dumb stuff
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25812 Posted: 14th August 2019     Subject: Forest animal populations have plummeted by half since 1970
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Populations of animals that live in the world's forests have declined by more than half in the past 50 years, a study warns.

Forest wildlife is vital for maintaining healthy woodlands and jungles which act as a major carbon store and help curb climate change, a report by conservation charity WWF said.

That is because creatures such as primates and large birds perform an important role in the regeneration of forests through dispersing tree seeds, eating plants and other activities - helping woodland thrive and absorb carbon.

But a global assessment by WWF and the Zoological Society of London (ZSL), of 455 populations of 268 species of wildlife that live only in forests, reveals they have declined by 53% on average since 1970. ... ns-1-4982614
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25819 Posted: 17th August 2019     Subject: Dangerous Microplastics Invade Alps To Artic
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A new study has revealed that high levels of microplastics have been detected in some of the most remote regions of the world.

The discovery, published in the journal Science Advances, is the first international study on microplastics in snow, conducted by the Alfred Wegener Institute in Germany.

Melanie Bergmann, the lead scientist, and her team of researchers found microplastics from the Alps to the Arctic contained high levels of the plastic fragment, raises questions about the environmental and health implications of potential exposure to airborne plastics.

"I was really astonished concerning the high concentrations," said co-author Gunnar Gerdts, a marine microbiologist at the Alfred Wegener Institute.

Bergmann explains that microplastics come from industrial economies where rubber and paints are used. The tiny fragments end up in the sea, where they're broken down by waves and ultraviolet radiation, before absorbing into the atmosphere. From there, the plastic particles are captured from the air during cloud development, can drift across the Earth via jet streams. At some point, the particles act as a nucleus around supercooled droplets can condense, and travel to Earth as snow.

https://www.zerohedge.c ... d-fresh-snow
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25820 Posted: 17th August 2019     Subject: Arctic sea ice loaded with microplastics
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At first glance, it looks like hard candy laced with flecks of fake fruit, or a third grader's art project confected from recycled debris.

In reality, it's a sliver of Arctic Ocean sea ice riddled with microplastics, extracted by scientists from deep inside an ice block that likely drifted southward past Greenland into Canada's increasingly navigable Northwest Passage between the Atlantic and Pacific Oceans.

"We didn't expect this amount of plastic, we were shocked," said University of Rhode Island ice expert Alessandra D'Angelo, one of a dozen scientists collecting and analysing data during an 18-day expedition aboard the Swedish icebreaker Oden. ... lastics.html
Morgana Post number 25848 Posted: 11th September 2019     Subject: Sustainability, deep ecology, & the sacred
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As our world stumbles to the brink of ecological collapse, the “tipping point” of irreversible climate change, sustainability has become a vital issue. But in order to consider the question of sustainability, it is important, to begin with the question: who or what is being sustained? Does sustainability refer to “sustained economic growth, ” and an environment that is able to sustain our present human civilization with its energy-intensive, consumer-driven needs and image of material progress? Or does sustainability refer to the whole ecosystem, an interconnected web of life with its vast and rich diversity of species? Which world are we trying to sustain?

The first image of sustainability has economic models of growth and energy efficiency, often with accompanying “green” ideas such as green technologies or green energy to help our civilization develop. It is orientated almost solely towards our human wellbeing, which the environment is seen as supporting. This is sometimes referred to as “surface ecology. ”

The second image of sustainability is often referred to as “deep ecology, ” and it considers the ecosystem as a living whole of which humanity is only one part. In this complex web of interrelationships, all species are dependent upon each other, and it is this dynamic pattern of inter-relationship that needs to be sustained. No one part can be considered as separate from the whole, and the idea that the environment is just here to support our human civilization is a travesty of real environmental consciousness.

Deep ecology moves beyond the Newtonian idea of humanity being separate from the world in which we live—the image of humanity and its “environment. ” It does not see humanity as a “superior” species, which the rest of the ecosystem should support in a subservient manner, or that nature is for humanity to master and control. Rather than embracing a Darwinian concept of the survival of the fittest, deep ecology sees life from the perspective of co-operation and inter-dependence. It brings into question whether our present civilization, with its model of continued economic and material growth, is ethically or environmentally sustainable. Is it right that our human needs and desires take precedence over the whole of creation, to the point of unprecedented species depletion, pollution, and destruction of natural habitat—as well as constellating a climate change that is bringing our whole ecosystem into a dangerous state of imbalance? And if creation is an interdependent whole, how long can we all endure this present ecocide?

An interdependent ecosystem is closer to the dynamics of particle physics, which we begin to understand as underlying our physical world. Here not only is no one part separate from another, but everything is interacting, both locally and at a distance. And consciousness itself is not separate from physical reality. We are interdependent in ways we are only just beginning to understand. And yet we still live in a civilization dominated by an outdated Newtonian image of separation. Sadly, even much present “environmental consciousness” remains within this paradigm, seeing the ecological imbalance as a problem that we can solve scientifically or economically. We have only begun to recognize the degree to which this unprecedented global crisis requires a shift in consciousness. If we are to truly respond to the need of an interconnected whole, we need a quality of consciousness that embraces the whole.

Once we step into the reality of a holistic consciousness that is truly in “interrelationship” with the whole, we will find our self in a very different world in which everything is interacting with us in a continually dynamic state. Even our consciousness is affecting the physical world. The question then becomes, what is our role in this truly interdependent reality? Even our present image of “deep ecology” primarily sees the world through a consciousness of separation—the analytic and rational framework of our education and conditioning. We rarely experience our consciousness merged into the oneness of the world around us, as for example exists with indigenous peoples for whom even the idea of an individual being separate from their environment does not exist.

Sadly, separation is so embedded into our present Western consciousness that we are not even aware of the limitations of our perception, or how our problem-solving mentality has a determining effect on how we see and interact with our environment. We have been educated to see the parts rather than the whole and to think and act from an attitude of separation. If we are to truly embrace the reality of ecological sustainability that recognizes the world as a living whole, we need to make the shift into a holistic consciousness, a consciousness that sees the whole in every part. Only then can we fully respond to the environmental crisis that is being caused by our present Western consciousness and the values it supports. Deep ecology requires not just a shift in values or ideology but a shift in consciousness.

We cannot return to an indigenous consciousness, and we need the tools of science and technology to survive in today’s world. However, within indigenous awareness, there is a key that can awaken us to an awareness of oneness. This key is the recognition of the sacred nature of creation. For indigenous peoples, everything is sacred, and they live this primal knowing in all of their daily activities. All of the world is sacred, and all of their everyday activities a lived relationship to the sacred. This is the heartbeat of their world. It could be argued that our Western civilization is unusual in not having an awareness of the sacred at its foundation. In our image of “progress, ” we are unaware of having lost something so essential to life.

The “sacred” is not something primarily religious or even spiritual. It is not a quality we need to learn or to develop. It belongs to the primary nature of all that is. When our ancestors knew that everything, they could see was sacred, this was not something taught but instinctively known. It was as natural as sunlight, as necessary as breathing. We all have within us a sense of the sacred, a sense of reverence. However, we may articulate it. It is a part of our human DNA. We each need to find this key within us. What does it mean for something to be sacred, what feeling does this evoke? How do we recognize the quality of the sacred, and how do we then respond?

If we sense that our world is not just a physical, mechanistic, or chance driven reality, but that there is a deeper mystery within and around it, we are sensing the sacred nature of creation. However, we may call this mystery, it permeates all of creation. It may be more easily felt in certain places, in ancient groves, beneath star-filled skies, in temples or cathedrals, in the chords of music. But this is a mystery that belongs to all that exists—there is nothing that is separate from it. As such, it celebrates the unity that is within and around us, the oneness of which we are a part. Our sense of the sacred is a recognition that we are a part of this deeper-all embracing mystery.

Once we allow our consciousness to be present in this greater mystery, we will find that life will speak to us as it spoke to our ancestors. It will remind us of how-to live-in harmony with creation and how to restore the balance that is intrinsic to life. This is the ancient wisdom of the Earth itself, the Earth which has evolved and changed over millennia, been through previous ecological shifts. Unless we return to this deep knowing, real sustainability will remain a concept rather than a lived reality. Thomas Berry speaks to this:

We need not a human answer to an earth problem, but an earth answer to an earth problem. The earth will solve its problems, and possibly our own if we will let the earth function in its own ways. We need only listen to what the earth is telling us.

We still carry this primal knowing of the sacred within our consciousness, even if we have forgotten it. A relationship to the sacred is older than any formalized religion, even though it is found at the foundation of many religions. It is a primal recognition of the wonder, beauty, and divine nature of the world. It is a felt reverence, an inner sense—we even speak of “a sense of the sacred. ” Once we bring this foundational awareness into our consciousness, into our relationship with the world in which we are present, we will find that it opens a door in our consciousness into oneness. The sacred is a quality of spirit in which all is one. Once we recognize something as, sacred, we feel its unity—the whole of which it is a part—the sacred naturally draws us away from separation towards oneness. The remembrance of the sacred is a key that can awaken our consciousness to the oneness to which we belong.

The awareness of the sacred reconnects our consciousness to the primal structure of life, which was known to our ancestors. For them, the world was sacred and whole—they could not conceive of it being other. The greatest tragedy of modern man is that we have lost this primal awareness, this knowing of the sacred. The most needed work is to reconnect with the sacred in our outer and inner life. Through this simple act of, remembrance, we can regain the balance we have so dangerously lost. Then we can see how we are a part of the interconnected web of life and know the work that needs to be done. Our outer actions, rather than reconstellating the patterns of separation, will naturally come from oneness and help life’s unity to unfold. We will again be a part of the evolving organic interdependence of life. Without this simple key of awareness of the sacred, we could remain lost in the wasteland world we are creating.

If we remember the sacred, we will find our self in a world as a whole as it is holy. This is not a world that sustains our models of economic growth and consumer desires. This is rather a world of wonder and magic, and a world that needs our attention—that needs to be sustained as much as it sustains us, sustains our souls as well as our bodies. But first, we need to make this shift in consciousness, to see the earth with new eyes. To quote the Canadian environmentalist David Suzuki:

The way we see the world shapes the way we treat it. If a mountain is a deity, not a pile of ore; if a river is one of the veins of the land, not potential irrigation water; if a forest is a sacred grove, not timber; if other species are biological kin, not resources; or if the planet is our mother, not an opportunity—then we will treat each other with greater respect. Thus is the challenge to look at the world from a different perspective.

You will also enjoy Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee: The Ancient Path of The Mystic

About the Author
Llewellyn Vaughan-Lee (born 1953, London) is a Sufi mystic and lineage successor in the Naqshbandiyya-Mujaddidiyya Sufi Order. He is an extensive lecturer and author of several books about Sufism, mysticism, dreamwork, and spirituality.

This article was originally published by Spiritual Ecology, an edited version was first published online at The Huffington Post. ... logy-sacred/

Mike The Blacksmith Post number 25886 Posted: 20th September 2019     Subject: Loss of birds
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U. S., Canada have lost 3 billion birds since 1970. Scientists say 'nature is unraveling.'
“It's an empty feeling in your stomach that these same birds that you grew up with just aren't there anymore. ”

Pete Marra remembers birdwatching in the woods behind his childhood home in Norwalk, Connecticut, in the 1970s, gazing up at common nighthawks as they extended their long, pointed wings and soared through the air. “They were these aerial acrobats, ” he said. “They did ballet. ”

By the time he got to high school, the woods had been cut down to make room for houses, and the nighthawks had begun to disappear. Today the bird has all but vanished from his old neighborhood.

“They're rare in Connecticut now. They're rare in many places, ” said Marra, now an ecologist who is the director of the Georgetown Environment Initiative. “It's an empty feeling in your stomach that these same birds that you grew up with just aren't there anymore. ” ... -ncna1055961
Morgana Post number 26122 Posted: 30th January 2020     Subject: Interceptor 001 in place after extreme flooding in jakarta
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Just as the new year commenced, the city of Jakarta (Indonesia) experienced widespread flooding – some of the worst it has seen since 1996, and the highest record rainfall in one day since their earliest records from 1886. With this inundation, more than 150,000 people have been displaced. Even as the waters are subsiding, there is much work to be done following the effects of this natural disaster. For those interested in donating to relief efforts, they can do so through organizations such as the Singapore Red Cross or Mercy Relief.

Early in 2019, we deployed Interceptor 001 in the Cengkareng Drain in Jakarta. As part of the design of these cleanup systems, they have been engineered to withstand harsh conditions, such as flooding. Interceptor 001 responded as intended, by remaining moored in place and no damage was reported for the system itself. The barrier broke, as it was also designed to do, and the team is already enacting solutions onsite in Jakarta. At present, Interceptor 001 is not operational but we expect it to be up and running in the coming weeks – with safety being the first priority.

The barriers of the Interceptors have been designed to withstand high flow velocities, but, when flooding takes place, this can put too much pressure on the entire system. When this happens, the barrier is designed to break at various points, allowing the water to flow and reduce the forces applied to the whole structure. In the case of Interceptor 001, the flow speeds were increased due to the heavy flooding in Jakarta, therefore, one of the connection points severed on the barrier. As a result, no equipment was lost and the entire device remained anchored in its location, allowing us to implement a new barrier swiftly.

Original barrier on Interceptor 001

By incorporating learnings from both Interceptor 001 and Interceptor 002 (in Malaysia) we will replace the barrier with a newer model. This new barrier has a stronger screen to handle the forces of the water and is simpler in design, making it more robust. Also, the barrier will have a better-defined weak link that we can adjust to the necessary strength and allow the Interceptor itself to remain secured for water flows that are too high for operations.

This flooding is an epidemic and certainly a symptom of a greater problem, and we hope for the sake of the inhabitants where Interceptors are and will be installed that we do not have to update on natural disasters like this again. For now, we will safely move forward with repairs and continue our work on the problem of ocean plastic pollution.

https://theoceancleanup ... -in-jakarta/
Mike The Blacksmith Post number 26150 Posted: 11th February 2020     Subject: Half-a-million insect species face extinction
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Half of the one million animal and plant species on Earth facing extinction are insects, and their disappearance could be catastrophic for humankind, scientists have said in a "warning to humanity".

"The current insect extinction crisis is deeply worrying," said Pedro Cardoso, a biologist at the Finnish Museum of Natural History and lead author of a review study published Monday.

"Yet, what we know is only the tip of the iceberg," he told AFP.

The disappearance of bugs that fly, crawl, burrow, jump and walk on water is part of a gathering mass extinction event, only the sixth in the last half-billion years.

The last one was 66 million years ago, when an errant space rock wiped out land-based dinosaurs and most other life forms.

This time we are to blame. ... entists.html
Morgana Post number 26154 Posted: 12th February 2020     Subject: Chinstrap penguin numbers may have fallen by more than half
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Chinstrap penguin numbers may have fallen by more than half on Antarctic island
Warming temperatures are likely the cause of the decline, according to a preliminary survey of the charismatic birds.

Just north of the Antarctic Peninsula, there’s a small, ice-covered island shaped like an elephant’s head. Each year, despite brutal winds and a landscape of crags, cliffs, and glaciers, hundreds of thousands of chinstrap penguins manage to nest on these shores, creating a living sea of black-and-white feathers.

“They’re like little mountaineers, ” says Noah Strycker, an ornithologist and graduate student at New York’s Stony Brook University. “They climb up 300 to 400 feet in some places. ”

But when Strycker and his fellow scientists spent 11 days counting chinstrap nests as part of a scientific survey this January, they discovered tens of thousands of penguins were missing.
“Comparing it to the number from 50 years ago, we’ve found a 56 percent drop in chinstrap penguin nests, which is rather shocking, ” says Strycker.

Due to its remote location and challenging conditions, the last census of the chinstrap penguins of Elephant Island was taken in 1971, and that survey identified 123,000 nests. Strycker and his team found less than half of that number.

read on...
https://www.nationalgeo ... -antarctica/

Photo: Chinstrap penguin
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