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Time To Rethink How & Where We Grow Food

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“From farm to plate, the modern food system relies heavily on cheap oil. Threats to our oil supply are also threats to our food supply. As food undergoes more processing and travels further, the food system consumes ever more energy each year.”

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Danielle Murray

Oil is the Most Energy Dense Form of Liquid Fuel

More often than not we hear commentators discussing oil in terms of barrels. A barrel of crude oil is 42 U.S. gallons or 158.9873 litres. A barrel of oil contains about six gigajoules of energy. This is equivalent to six billion joules or approximately 1667 kilowatt-hours. This equates to 5.8 million Btu, or British thermal units. This one barrel of oil with its astronomical 6.1 gigajoules of energy has the ability to do the work of approximately 2000 horse power hours. A healthy strong person doing physical work for eight hours generates around 75 watts of energy or one tenth of the energy a horse can deliver. Therefore as a rough guide, one barrel of crude oil has the ability to do around 10 years of human labour based on a 40 hour work week.  Yet it seems many of us take this precious substance for granted, oblivious to how this liquid fuel has changed our lives, our economy and the way we live.  

Oil a Finite Resource

Due to its high energy density, ability to be easily transported, and relative abundance, oil has been the world’s most important source of energy since the mid-1950s. A whopping 90% of all global transport is fuelled by crude oil. The density of energy v’s cost, weight, and storability have enabled petroleum to remain the dominate fuel for transportation for the last several decades. While most associate petroleum with a fuel source, there are over 6,000 items that we use each day made from petroleum waste by-products. Some of the more familiar ones include: fertiliser, linoleum, perfume, insecticide, soap, vitamin capsules, computers, mobile phones, CDs, clothes, tires, dyes, food preservatives, paint, shoes, lubricants, food packaging, lounges, antiseptics, and pharmaceuticals.

Oil Has Helped Fuel Agricultural Productivity

One of the most influential uses oil has had since the 1940’s is on agricultural productivity through the use of energy-intensive mechanisation, fertilisers, and pesticides. These have dramatically changed the nature of farming, resulting in an increased reliance on fossil fuel based inputs needed for broad scale farming. As Lester Brown from the Earth Policy Institute points out:

The growth in the world fertiliser industry after World War II was spectacular. Between 1950 and 1988, fertiliser use climbed from 14 million to 144 million tons. As the world economy evolved from being largely rural to being highly urbanised, the natural nutrient cycle was disrupted. In traditional rural societies, food is consumed locally, and human and animal waste is returned to the land, completing the nutrient cycle. But in highly urbanised societies, where food is consumed far from where it is produced, using fertiliser to replace the lost nutrients is the only practical way to maintain land productivity. It comes as no surprise the growth in fertiliser use closely tracks the growth in urbanisation, with much of it concentrated in the last 60 years.

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While some countries are using less fertiliser inputs, the average growth rate for global fertilizers demand, according to a United Nations report, suggests demand between 2011 to 2015 will grow by around 2%.

Time to Rethink Food Production

This reliance on fossil fuels for fertilisers accounts for around a third of all agricultural energy consumption. The use of hydrocarbon-fuelled farm machinery and irrigation systems means industrialised farming consumes 50 times the energy input of traditional agriculture. In extreme cases, agriculture’s energy consumption has increased one hundred fold or more. It’s estimated that 95% of all our food products require the use of oil. Just to farm a single cow and deliver it to market requires six barrels of oil, enough to drive a car from New York to Los Angeles. (1) Petroleum products are used directly to power tractors, machinery, and irrigation. It provides the energy to transport, transform, and package agricultural products. They are also used indirectly to manufacture fertilisers and pesticides and prepare seeds. Thus, food production is extremely energy intensive. It takes approximately 2,000 litres of oil equivalents per year to feed and supply the average American. This accounts for about 19 per cent of the total energy used in the United States. (2)

We Need to Rethink Food, by Liam Scheff

excerpts from Rethink…Your world, Your future.

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

RethinkcoverCE2facebook

(1) Caroline Lucs, Andy Jones and Colin Hines, Peak oil and food security Fuelling a food crisis, Pacific Ecologist Winter 2007. http://pacificecologist.org/archive/14/peak-oil-part-one.pdf

(2) Andrew Martin, Rethink…Your World, Your Future…Oneness Publishing, 2015.

 

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Environmental

Would You Go Vegan To Save The World? New Study Suggests It’s The Best Option

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Congratulations! If you made it here to read this article it likely means you are a vegan, vegetarian, follow a plant-based diet or are at least legitimately interested in what you can do to reduce your environmental impact on the planet. Thank you!

Veganism has been on the rise over the past decade or so, and for good reason! Many people are starting to learn the truth about where meat and animal products actually come from, the health risks associated with a diet dense in animal protein and the profoundly devastating effects that modern agriculture and factory farming is taking on our environment. I always say, if you can’t do it for the animals, and you can’t do it for yourself — do it for the planet!

So How Does A Vegan Lifestyle Protect Our Environment?

Researchers at the University of Oxford published a study that showed how cutting out meat and dairy products from your diet could reduce an individuals carbon footprint by as much as 73 percent — times that by 7.6 billion.

On top of that, the researchers also found that if everyone in the world simply stopped consuming these foods altogether, the global farmland that is currently in use could be reduced by 75% — an area equivalent to the size of the United States, China and the entire European Union combined. And here we are worrying about overpopulation. This shift in diet and lifestyle would not only result in a significant drop in greenhouse gas emissions but also free up huge amounts of land lost to animal agriculture — one of the main causes for an alarming rate of wildlife extinction facing our planet today.

The Study

Published in the journal Science, it’s one of the most comprehensive analyses available thus far on the damaging effects that modern farming and agriculture have on our environment. Data from nearly 40,000 farms in 119 countries was included.

Findings revealed that production of meat and dairy is responsible for nearly 60% of agricultures portion of greenhouse gas emissions.

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Researchers examined 40 agricultural products during the study, which covered 90% of all food that is eaten worldwide. They observed the impact each of these foods had on the environment by analyzing emissions, water pollution and air pollution.

Lead author Joseph Poore said,

“A vegan diet is probably the single biggest way to reduce your impact on planet Earth, not just greenhouse gases, but global acidification, eutrophication, land use and water use.

“It is far bigger than cutting down on your flights or buying an electric car,” he explained, which would only reduce greenhouse gas emissions.

“Avoiding consumption of animal products delivers far better environmental benefits than trying to purchase sustainable meat and dairy,” he added.

A portion of the research was aimed at looking at various techniques that are used to produce the same foods and found vast distinctions in terms of their environmental impact.

For example, cattle raised on natural grass pastures used 50 times less land than those that were being raised on deforested land — which can produce up to 12 times more greenhouse gas emissions in comparison. Compare this to the emissions released for plant-based protein sources such as tofu and peas, and you’re looking at a drastic difference.

Poore told The Guardian, “Converting grass into [meat] is like converting coal to energy. It comes with an immense cost in emissions.”

This study is the result of a five-year-long project which ironically enough started off as an investigation into sustainable meat and dairy production. After just one year into the study, Poore stopped eating animals altogether.

According to Poore, the next step is to find ways to test his proposed approach in practice. He told the independent,

“The problem is, you can’t just put environmental labels on a handful of foods and look to see if there is some effect on purchasing,” he said.

“Consumers take time to become aware of things, and then even more to act on them. Furthermore, the labels probably need to be in combination with taxes and subsidies. My view is that communicating information to consumers could tip the entire food system towards sustainability and accountability.”

Some Final Thoughts

It’s important to know that we have a lot of options here, it’s not simply vegan or nothing. We can use this information to take action in our own lives and do what we can to reduce our own impact. You don’t have to go vegan overnight, however if this information resonates with you, you can start cutting out meat and dairy products to start with. This will give you time to explore a new palate of flavors and alternatives to your favorite foods. Also, even if you could never imagine yourself giving up meat, that’s fine — you don’t have to. You can follow a plant-based diet and still eat meat once in a while if you feel called to do so.

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Alternative News

What Most People Call “Chemtrails” Could Kill Tens of Thousands of People, Says Harvard Professor

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Remember, don’t panic! These are issues we have to approach from a place of peace. Responding with fear and worry is completely useless. Yes, it’s a major issue, but issues are transformed in a number of ways. It’s not all “doom and gloom,” it’s not all dark, there are wonderful things happening on this planet, and positive forces at work to help activists all around the world.

We are no doubt living in exciting times, so don’t let something like this get you down! Rise up, overcome the fear and sadness you feel and transform that energy into a positive force. When you do that, you help change the world.

What is geoengineering? It’s the large scale intervention and manipulation of the global climate system through various means, the most popular seems to be spraying reflective substances into the air via aircraft or balloons in order to reflect the sunlight back into space.

Within the past few years, multiple academic institutions have initiated geo-engineering research departments. Harvard University, for example, recently created one. There is also the SPICE project (Stratospheric Particle Injection for Climate Engineering). SPICE is a United Kingdom government funded geoengineering research project that collaborates with the university of Oxford, Cambridge, Edinburgh and Bristol to further examine the idea of Solar Radiation Management (SRM).

I recently published an article about a conference held at Harvard on the topic,  where they issued this report that elaborates on what these programs will take, their potential implications, feasibility and more. You can watch some of the speakers at the conference here.

The discrepancy when it comes to geo-engineering comes from the idea that they’re grouped into the word chemtrails. Chemtrails is a term used to describe what several people have been seeing in the skies for years; a path of chemicals being sprayed by airplanes all over North America. Some argue that they are simply contrails from the engines of the plane, but multiple sources say otherwise, and for them to completely cover the sky over the period of the day and never disappear, has also raised suspicion among those who are paying attention.

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Nevertheless, a paper from Dr. Rose Cairns, PhD., who belongs to the University of Leeds School of Earth and Environment, published in the peer-reviewed Geophysical Journal titled “Climates of suspicion: ‘chemtrail’ conspiracy narratives and the international politics of geoengineering” describes developments in mainstream academic and political discourse regarding geoengineering, and how climate modification, also being discussed by the citizens of the world (who use the term “chemtrails”), is having devastating ecological and health effects worldwide. According to her paper:

“Understanding the emerging politics of geoengineering, and taking seriously claims regarding the importance of public participation, requires an understanding of the whole discursive landscape around ideas of global climate control – including marginal ideas such as those held by chemtrail activists. Ignoring or dismissing these discourses out of hand as pathological or paranoid is to ignore potentially revealing insights about the emerging politics of geoengineering.” (source)

Cairns also mentions that:

“This analysis suggests a number of ways in which the chemtrail narrative may contain important insights and implications for the emerging politics of geoengineering that cannot be dismissed out of hand as ‘paranoid’ or ‘pathological’.” (source)

This may be why so many people over the years, even many celebrities like Prince, are speaking about chemtrails is because there is ample evidence to suggest that these programs are already operational.

“In recent years there has been a decline in the support for weather modification research, and a tendency to move directly into operational projects.” –  World Meteorological Association

Collective Evolution has published several articles on this phenomena, and many of them provide the evidence I’m speaking of. If you’re interested in learning more, you can check out the articles below:

Saudi Princess & Member of the Royal Family Says Geoengineering “Is A Weapon of Mass Destruction.”

The Sky Is Going To Be Sprayed With Toxic Particles In A Geoengineering Experiment – Blocking The Sunlight

Scientist Dr. Michio Kaku Admits Government Weather Control On CBS News

CIA Director States, On Camera, His Support For Geoengineering (Spraying Particles Into The Atmosphere)

If You Think These Are Just “Contrails” Think Again – Here’s What They Really Are

David W. Keith is one of the scientists involved in this initiative, and has been for a long time. He’s a professor of Applied Physics for the Paulson School of Engineering and Applied Sciences (SEAS). He’s also a professor at Harvard university, and chairman of Carbon Engineering.

His research, which is also cited in the Harvard report above, includes a lot of work on climate-related technology assessment and policy. When asked about the spraying of these heavy metals into the atmosphere, of which millions of tonnes would have to be used, he said this:

“You may end up killing many ten’s of thousands of people a year as a direct results of that decision.” 

 

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Alternative News

Cups, Re-Usable Pads, & Everything You Should Know About What You Can Use On Your Period!

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A few years ago now, I wrote an article about alternatives to tampons and pads and highlighted some more sustainable options and outlined some of the risks associated with the use of tampons made of synthetic fibers specifically.

Now there are even more alternatives, that some people may find more accessible so it’s time for an updated version of this article with all of the new advancements in this realm to suit your needs. I get it, not everyone wants to use a menstrual cup, although some absolutely love them.

A period is something that many people have on a regular, monthly basis. Throughout our lifetime, we will have on average of 450 periods and use between 10,000-12,000 menstrual products, most of which will end up in the trash and eventually landfills. Since the majority of these products are made from plastic, rayon and chemical laden cotton, they do not biodegrade and they take thousands of years to break down.

On top of that, many of these products contain toxic chemicals that aren’t exactly good for our bodies. So, why not do what we can to limit the amount of plastic and chemical waste that ends up in our landfills, oceans, AND bodies? There are enough alternatives available now that the only excuse is essentially ignorance, laziness or straight up carelessness, if you are unaware of the alternatives, after reading this you will be fully informed.

The Cup

This is the one that most people are very wary of until they try it. Personally, I’ve been using the cup for 6 years now, and I have to say – I love it. Although, it did take me quite a few months to get used to, in my opinion it is the most sustainable option and although the reusable pads are great too, I’m just not really a pads type of person, I don’t like having that extra bulk down there. So, the cups are made of surgical grade silicon, which means they do not leach any toxins or chemicals into the body, they last a long time, although they will likely get stained over time; you can simply sanitize them by boiling them in water for 10 minutes, easy peasy.

Most cups that I have seen even come with a convenient little cotton or hemp bag to carry it in. They can hold quite a lot of fluid, depending on your flow they only need to be changed twice a day, once in the evening once in the morning, which in theory, means that you won’t even have to change it while you are out and about or at work.

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Also, this method is super cost effective, assuming we spend anywhere from $3,000 – $6,000 over the course of a lifetime, even just 4 cups might cost $200 total. However, if this method just seems totally absurd to you and something that you could never see yourself actually using, have no fear, there is also the reusable pad option, which is catching on quickly…

The Reusable Pad

If again, you’re thinking something along the lines of ew…gross – then just hear me out. While the idea of having a pad that you have to wash yourself is somewhat off-putting, just think of all of the waste you’ll be saving from the landfills. There are tons of options for reusable pads and even period proof underwear, which act in the same way except they have a built-in liner. These come in many different varieties from super light to extra super flow, and even reusable liners that can be used for the day or two before or after your expected visit from Aunt Flo.

They are leak proof, generally made from organic and sustainable materials and there are so many options for you to choose to find out what works best for you and your cycle. When it’s time to wash, you simply rinse them out under hot running water and wash as you would normally with your underwear. Really, it’s not as bad as you think and the amount of waste it saves makes this option pretty much a no-brainer, well, at least one of these options.

However, if you still just can’t get around the idea of having to see or touch blood from your own cycle/body, then there is yet another option to consider…

Reusable Tampon Applicators

These are great options for times where you won’t have access to a private stall bathroom or you are out and about hiking or camping and don’t have a way to wash your pads or rinse out your cup hygienically. Reusable applicators use organic tampon inserts, similar to the smaller ones you may have seen with no applicator, and every time you have to change your tampon, you just insert a new tampon, and use the reusable applicator to insert it.

This method saves tons of plastic applicators from our landfills and oceans. Some models that are available come with a handy little carrying case and a cap. This method couldn’t be simpler, because if you are already a tampon user, it is literally the exact same method. Aside from having to simply wipe or rinse it off and sterilize it once in a while, it’s a very simple method.

Final Thoughts?

As you can clearly see there are so many easy and viable options that are not only better for your body, but better for our environment as a whole. Really, menstrual products are just one example out of millions that can be looked at in a more sustainable light and modified to reduce the amount of waste they are producing. We can all do our part to be the change, and take responsibility for our own lives and the impact we are making.

Much Love

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Your life path number can tell you A LOT about you.

With the ancient science of Numerology you can find out accurate and revealing information just from your name and birth date.

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