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Unplug Yourself From The Industrial Food System With Permaculture Gardening

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“The greatest change we need to make is from consumption to production, even if on a small scale, in our own gardens. If only 10% of us do this, there is enough for everyone. Hence the futility of revolutionaries who have no gardens, who depend on the very system they attack, and who produce words and bullets, not food and shelter.”

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Bill Mollison

Observe and Interact

Over forty years ago, Bill Mollison, with the help of David Holmgren, helped develop a blueprint for sustainable living. Mollison — an author, scientist, teacher, and biologist — spent many years working in and with nature. He came to the understanding that everything is connected and that the way we are living is killing us and the planet. He developed a system which integrated agriculture, horticulture, architecture, and ecology in a conscious effort to design landscapes which replicate the natural patterns found in nature. Mollison and Holmgren understood the value of observing nature. By observing nature we can design solutions which suit our particular circumstances while producing human settlements which are abundant in productivity (food) and pleasing to inhabit.

Earth Care, People Care, and Fair Share

Apart from the design principles, permaculture promotes three main ethics which many native cultures once practiced: Earth Care, People Care, and Fair Share. The key differentiator of Permaculture from conventional farming is that it is not just about the utilisation of resources in an efficient and effective way. It embraces ethics in design and teaches one to think more critically. These three underlying principles are in stark contrast to the modern food system which focuses on profit at all costs.

Permaculture Works with Nature and is Regenerative

Most of us are all-too-familiar with the ill effect the industrial food system has had on our planet. Species extinction, ecosystem destruction, salinity issues, the removal of top soils, deforestation, overfishing, soil toxicity, and climate change are just a few of the externalities of an overly resource intensive system which leaves many with excess and many more people hungry.

The difference between permaculture and modern industrial agriculture is that permaculture works with nature as opposed to against nature. Permaculture is a design science which observes natural systems in an attempt to learn from what they offer in the way of design, stability, and resilience. Hence, permaculture looks at the whole system and values how it all works in a synergy of balance and abundance. Permaculture focuses on techniques and practices which help re-establish this balance by creating places of diversity and abundance through restoring natural habitats which benefit all — not just humans.

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Permaculture Captures and Stores Energy

Our long distance agriculture uses vast amounts of energy. It takes approximately 2,000 litres of oil equivalents per year to feed and supply the average American. This accounts for about 19 percent of the total energy used in the United States. In industrialised countries today, one food calorie requires expending an average of between seven to ten calories of fossil energy. (1)

Permaculture captures and stores energy. How does it do this? There are a number of ways. The act of simply growing your own food is effectively storing the energy or sunlight that we receive each day. Any excess food can be preserved, dried, bottled, or canned. Hence we are storing this energy for another time. Today we truck in and ship goods from all over the planet. The simple act of storing excess foods you have grown in the summer saves significant amounts of energy.

Our reliance on long distance supply chains not only makes us vulnerable to external influences to the system but also leaves us blind to how, what, and where our food is coming from. We have no control over how and what is done to the food we eat. We have chosen to be dependent consumers as opposed to responsible producers. While not everyone has the luxury of a backyard or land there are many things which can be done to get started. Pot plants, planter boxes, community gardens, urban gardens, and land share schemes right through to local CSAs help reduce our reliance on long distance supply chains. The key to this is focusing on local solutions.

Permaculture Produces No Waste

As a young boy my father drummed into me the mantra of “waste not want not,” and he was absolutely right. Another permaculture principle, “produce no waste,” is highly relevant to our throw-away, planned obsolescent model of production and consumption. Nothing is wasted on a permaculture property or site. Understanding the value of resources and the natural world allows us to see the connection and interconnectedness of all systems. Under the permaculture model everything is composted, mulched, or recycled. Everything from food scraps and green waste to your own waste is integrated and used as valuable resources. That’s right, while many would find it hard to fathom that human waste can be recycled, there is a growing movement of people who understand the importance of collecting and composting “humanure.”

It has been estimated that every time we flush the toilet we launch 5 or 6 gallons of polluted water out into the world; that’s 4.8 billion gallons of fresh water polluted by waste and then treated with harmful chemicals every day in America alone. (2) Each year over 450 million tonnes of nitrogen fertilizer is produced and sprayed, poured, and scattered across the planet. Most of this is in the form of anhydrous ammonia, ammonia nitrate, and urea. This equates to the consumption of between 3–5% of the world’s natural gas production for this process alone. (3)

When you think about it, it is a no brainer that we should be making use of this valuable and easily accessible resource. The environmental benefits should also be considered. The environmental impact of treating your own sewage helps out on the eco-friendly front as there is less energy used and greater overall efficiency and less wastage along the way.

Check Out the Latest Video from Living Big in a Tiny House Featuring a Story on Permaculture:

Article by Andrew Martin, author of  Rethink…Your world, Your future. and One ~ A Survival Guide for the Future… 

RethinkcoverCE2Excerpts from Rethink…Your world, Your future.

(1) UNEP, The end to cheap oil: a threat to food security and an incentive to reduce fossil fuels in agriculture, April 2012. http://na.unep.net/geas/getUNEPPageWithArticleIDScript.php?article_id=81

(2) http://brie-hoffman.hubpages.com/hub/Off-Grid-Toilets

(3)   http://data.worldbank.org/indicator/AG.CON.FERT.ZS

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The Real Agenda Behind The Paris Climate Accord – Besides The Actual Climate

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    The efforts to ratify the Paris Climate Accord of 2015 and put a Carbon Tax/Carbon Credits scheme in place continue, amidst growing resistance.

  • Reflect On:

    If we were to clearly understand that the greatest beneficiaries of the Paris Climate Accords would be a small global elite, would we start to question this "solution" to Climate Change and even question the legitimacy of the Climate Change movement?

Greta Thunberg is quite upset. Yes, even more than she normally is. The reason? Because the wave of climate change school strikes over the past year has “achieved nothing” since greenhouse gas emissions continue to rise, apparently by 4% since the Paris Climate Accord was signed four year ago. And here is why she thinks this has happened:

People want everything to continue like now and they are afraid of change. And change is what we young people are bringing and that is why they want to silence us and that is just a proof that we are having an impact that our voices are being heard that they try so desperately to silence us. (source)

The notion that the global political establishment is trying desperately to ‘silence’ Greta Thunberg and her young friends verges on the absurd. If anything, the global political establishment has done everything in its power to give voice to her ongoing strikes, marches, and protestations, and the global media has been fully accommodating by keeping her and her demands on the nations of the world in a bright spotlight.

While we have seen a physical maturation in Greta Thunberg before our eyes, her message has not grown accordingly and is getting stale. It’s not just the monotonous timbre of her outrage. Her unquestioning advocacy for the only establishment “solution” to climate change–mapped out by the controversial Paris Climate Accords of 2015–is starting to make people ask questions. As a girl growing in intelligence and discernment, would she not at any point challenge the ‘official’ solution handed to her on climate change, and wonder if some of the problems are actually contained therein? Would she not give at least a cursory glance to other solutions that have been proposed that might be more palatable to nation states?

How About Hemp?

Solutions like, for example, growing large amounts of hemp all over the planet. Hemp is a super-strong and fast-growing crop that pulls carbon out of our atmosphere like nothing else:

Hemp begins sequestering carbon the moment it is seeded; conservatively, hemp cultivation yields a sequestration ratio of about 1.5 units of sequestration per unit produced. In Layman’s terms, one ton of harvested hemp fiber should sequester 1.62 tons of CO2. Hemp can also sequester carbon back into the soil through a process called, biosequestration. In this process, hemp captures carbon emissions from the atmosphere. (source)

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If we took this efficiency rate and calculated the cost of using a worldwide hemp-planting initiative to meet IPCC carbon-reduction guidelines, we would find not only that the cost to nation-states would be a fraction of what is being proposed by the Paris Climate Accord, but if this was done wisely and efficiently then countries would probably be able to actually profit from the enterprise by harvesting the hemp for its many uses.

Still skeptical? Longtime hemp activist Jack Herer is offering $100,000 to anyone who can disprove his hypothesis that hemp is a silver bullet for climate change. Here’s what he says at the end of his challenge, which was put up on his website in 2002:

No one has taken the $100,000 challenge to prove me wrong. Why? Because I am right. The U.S. government has been lying to us since the early 1900s. Do economic interests have more to say than the people about the future of our planet?

So to be clear–I am not even broaching the subject as to whether or not Carbon emissions are causing global warming, or if the planet is even warming, both matters that are also deserved of serious investigation and analysis. All I am saying in this article is that an examination of the only solution to ‘Climate Change’ being proposed by the global establishment–and parroted by activists like Greta Thunberg–will help us discern whether or not the goal here is actually to improve conditions on the planet for humanity.

The Paris Climate Accord Explained

I have come across a video put together by health freedom advocate Dr. V. A. Shiva, who ran for the Senate in Massachusetts, in which he gives a clear and concise explanation of what would happen if the Paris Climate Accord was fully implemented today, and why it was a good thing that the U.S. pulled out of the accords. Here is a basic summary of his points:

  1. Today, one of the basic mechanisms of our economy is that manufacturers take raw materials and turn them into products, which we pay for as consumers.
  2. Those manufacturers are cumulatively emitting a certain amount of Carbon Dioxide into the atmosphere as a result of the manufacturing process.
  3. By 2030, the total amount of Carbon Dioxide emitted into the atmosphere will have INCREASED based on the regulations of the accord (e.g. China will be allowed to double their carbon emissions without penalty).
  4. The only change is that manufacturers will have to pay money to the “IPCC” (a global elite “science” group that includes Al Gore, the Bushes, and others) in exchange for ‘carbon credits’ that this group somehow magically ‘owns’ and can therefore sell. 2030 will be the big payday for them as China will have to start buying credits.
  5. Naturally, these payments for carbon credits will ultimately be felt by consumers who will have to buy their consumer goods at a proportionately increased cost.
  6. In addition, the “IPCC” will allow these carbon credits to be bought and sold on a commodities market, which will actually enable the “IPCC,” current ‘owners’ of most of the carbon credits, to make TRILLIONS since the mechanisms in place will make the finite credits infinitely more valuable over time.
  7. As part of the agreement the U.S. had to agree to create a $100 Billion “Green Fund” which was actually being used to pay off (bribe) top “influencers” in each of the 190 signatory countries in order to get them to persuade their country’s leaders to sign on to the accord.

In effect, When the U.S. pulled out of the Paris Accord, the “Green Fund” payouts were withdrawn and a wrench was thrown into these plans. Many countries, especially developing nations, are now hesitant to become involved in a scam to enrich the global elite to the detriment of their own economy.

Vladamir Putin’s line to Greta Thunberg sums up the current hesitation by some signatories of the Paris Accord:

No one has explained to Greta that the modern world is complex and different and…people in Africa or in many Asian countries want to live at the same wealth level as in Sweden. Go and explain to developing countries why they should continue living in poverty and not be like Sweden.

Greta Thunberg is dead wrong in saying that the problem is that people, or countries, are ‘afraid of change.’ The majority of humanity is aching for change. But the most important change for us to make first is to take back our power, and recognize which so-called ‘movements’ are designed to once again enrich a small elite at the expense of humanity.

The Takeaway

Our ability to move forward and make positive changes for the benefit of humanity is contingent on our discernment of the activities of the global elite, especially those activities which pretend to be in service of humanity. We have to stop giving away our power to carefully orchestrated movements that seem appealing but, when looked into more closely, turn out to be vehicles of our continued enslavement.

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New Plastic “Zeoform” Turns Hemp Into Almost Anything

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    Zeoform is a material that changes everything. It's made from cellulose fibres and water. Their patented process converts cellulose fibres into an industrial strength moulding material capable of being formed in into an array of products.

  • Reflect On:

    Zeoform is 100% non-toxic, biodegradable, compostable and ‘locks up’ carbon into beautiful, functional forms. A perfect solution for emerging hemp industries and bio-waste nations. Solutions exist, finding solutions are not the issue, so what is?

What if today’s plastics could be made from materials which were not only sustainable, but non-toxic? At the moment, our plastics are made from oil, which means not only are we putting toxic chemicals into our atmosphere, but we are also filling our environment with products that cannot bio-degrade.

To combat this problem, a company out of Australia has created a promising new product called Zeoform, made entirely out of water and cellulose taken from hemp plants. This means their plastic is not only eco-friendly in production but is also biodegradable!

As stated on their website:

Zeoform is a revolutionary material that changes everything. Made from cellulose fibres and water – and absolutely nothing else! Our patented process converts cellulose fibres into a super strong high tech moulding material capable of being formed into a multitude of products. ZEOFORM is 100% non-toxic, biodegradable and ‘locks up’ carbon from waste into beautiful, functional forms.

zoeform_chair

According to Zeoform, their product is very durable and relies only on the natural process of hydrogen bonding that takes place when cellulose fibres are mixed with water. No glue or bonding material is necessary because the bond created is already so strong. The final material can be formed into almost anything and can be cut, routed, machined, drilled, screwed, nailed, and glued in the same way wood and wood composites can be. It can also be coloured/dyed, and finished in any way creators like.

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The material is inherently water- and fire-resistant and can be reinforced further in both categories with some small adjustments to ingredients. Zeoform can also be made into anything, from car parts to paper, moulds, furniture, and even musical instruments – the possibilities are endless.

zeoform_guitar

Given the practicality of this material, the company hopes to expand their patented technology and begin offering manufacturing licenses to larger facilities around the world. Since there is plenty of infrastructure already set up where this type of product can be built, switching over from our current unsustainable and toxic method of production is very possible and should be a high priority, especially considering our environmental state. Sure it might mean disaster for big oil, but isn’t it time we put us and the environment ahead of profit?

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Humpback Whale Population Leaps Back From Near-Extinction — From Just 450 To Over 25,000

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In Brief

  • The Facts:

    A new study explains how the humpback whale population has gone from near extinction to numbers that were seen before commercial whaling began.

  • Reflect On:

    Our potential to assist with the restoration of a species on the brink of extinction on our planet is huge. We can can feel encouraged that one day, human greed and ego, combined with political/elitist agendas, will no longer rule the day.

A new study from the University of Washington’s School of Aquatic and Fishery Sciences has revealed that the humpback whale population (also known as Megaptera novaeangliae) is growing, and has rebounded from near extinction numbers to approximately 25,000. The researchers believe that these numbers are close to pre-whaling numbers. The study was co-authored by Grant Adams, John Best and André Punt.

The study, published last month in the journal Royal Society Open Science, is one that argues against an assessment that was conducted between 2006 and 2015 by the International Whaling Commission which claimed that the population of humpback whales had only recovered approximately 30 percent of its pre-exploitation population. That being said, since that assessment was conducted, new data has come forth that, according to this study, provides more accurate information on life-history, catches and genetics.

It’s great to see positive change on the planet in the midst of several issues and the constant bombardment of ‘negativity.’ Whaling once represented one of the world’s most destructive forms of exploitation of natural resources. As the study points out,

…many species were hunted for centuries and/or across vast geographical areas and, as a consequence, were nearly extirpated. Protection was afforded at different times during the twentieth century (e.g. right whales, Eubalaena spp., were protected in 1935 and humpback, Megaptera novaeangliae, and blue whales, Balaenoptera musculus, in the mid-1960s). However, removals thereafter by illegal whaling brought several populations to dangerously low levels until the moratorium on all commercial whaling was implemented by the International Whaling Commission (IWC) for its member states in the mid-1980s.

We’ve Come A Long Way

Prior to these practices, indigenous populations were quite in-tune with mother nature and the preservation and maintenance of its species. After having completely lost our connection for a period of time, we have come a long way in areas like the restoration of the humpback whale population.

A long period of exploitation from pre-modern and modern whaling drove the WSA humpback whales to the brink of extinction. The population declined abruptly after the onset of commercial whaling and remained small, with less than 1000 individuals for nearly 40 years. Once protected, WSA humpback whales have recovered strongly, and their current abundance is close to 25 000 whales. The population status is much more optimistic than previously thought and abundance should reach its pre-exploitation level within the next 10 years or so, assuming mortality from anthropogenic threats remains low.

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Lead author Alex Zerbini of the UW’s Joint Institute for the Study of the Atmosphere and Ocean stressed the importance of providing population assessments without biases, but says these findings come as good news— an example of how an endangered species can come back from near extinction.

This isn’t the only good news when it comes to our marina family. Canada, for example, has completely banned the captivity of whales and dolphins, although their capture is still permitted for certain scientific purposes, which is absolutely brutal. Scientific study of these majestic, empathetic and extremely intelligent beings should be limited to observation, and those that have passed away. Furthermore, Marine Land seems to be exempt for that law, and they are permitted to keep the ones they have in captivity there for life. They will probably breed them as well allowing for the sustainability of the park, which is heart-breaking.

What Gives Us The right?

What gives us the right to do what we do to animals? This has all been the result of brainwashing and marketing. Anybody who is in touch with their heart and has qualities of empathy would never condone the capture of any animals. It hurts to see another hurt, and those who don’t think it’s hurtful and traumatic for these animals are severely misinformed.

Not long after the news came out of Canada, for the first time in 17 years, there will be no whaling in Icelandic waters, at least for this summer. Because of a shrinking international market for whale meat, and an overall shift in consciousness on the planet to a more compassionate and empathetic stance, along with an expansion of a no-fishing coastal zone, both of the nation’s biggest whaling companies are apparently putting a halt to their hunting season.

The Takeaway

The way we treat animals on our planet is very concerning and heart-breaking. Large corporations have exploited animals, and still do, while we live our lives not really knowing what’s been happening to them. It’s still a big problem, and all industries that exploit animals are in opposition to the values that we need to return to on our planet: compassion, empathy, and love. We are here to live in harmony with animals, and not use them for our own selfish purposes. The exploitation of animals is not needed and it’s completely unnecessary.

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