Sunday, July 16, 2006

Carnival of the Green #36

Hello and welcome to powering down. I’m honored and happy to host this week’s Carnival of The Green #36. Created By City Hippy and Triple Pundit as a weekly round up of the greater green blogosphere, you can get more information on this environmental carnival and how to host at either of the links above. Last week Carnival of the Green was hosted at The Ester Republic. Next week it moves over to Myke’s Weblog.

I was having quite a bit of trouble deciding which articles to include. Being a new father and beginning to think about ways to teach my daughter about the Earth and how to live responsibly on it, I thought this would be a good opportunity for her to get involved. There are those that say a four month old is too young to host her first Carnival of the Green, but I say it’s her world we’re talking about and if she thinks she can do it (and she does) then why not?

So I’ll man the keyboard while Keaton Phoenix surfs the web and picks out this week’s most interesting and informing articles on the environment. Here we go.

Getting to The Holdouts. "Remember the legendary “holdouts” of the Japanese Imperial Army?" says John Laumer at Triple Pundit. Well Keaton doesn't. Neither do I for that matter. But I've heard about them. "Japanese Soldiers hid in mountain jungle caves of Pacific Islands long after their nation's surrender. Some re-entered modern society up to three decades after the end of World War II." John goes on to compare them with the climate change holdouts of today. He recommends recruiters are brought in or maybe even organic food be left outside the caves these global warming disbeliveers are living in. Keaton enjoyed the imagery.

Nathan at Greenthinkers thought this would be a great time to write about the cutest little GEM e4 no-emission vehicles on the road. Just the right size for Keaton she thinks. They were used in St. Petersburg during the recent G8 summit as they were at the same summit in 2004. With a top speed of 25 miles an hour they can go up to 30 miles between charges. Big isn’t always better right Keaton?

Nuthatch at bootstrap analysis featured an “Asides” in which he shares several recent discoveries including a paper on the large amount of antibacterial agents ending up in our ag fields. Yup, it displeased Keaton quite a bit to learn that she and her friends will have to deal with many more super bacteria in the future because we wash our hands with antibacterial soap that isn’t necessary. Talk about selling her future down the river! Also Nuthatch goes on to write about a Greenthinkers post about which fruits and veggies are the most and least contaminated. Good to know when shopping for fruits and vegetables with which to make Keaton baby food. Last on his list was an article on Grist. It pertains to upcoming initiatives by Whole Foods that increase this retailer’s commitment to its customers. Can you imagine a grocery store allowing local farmers to sell produce in their parking lot?

As a way to help better understand the connected nature of economy, bio-diversity and the geopolitics surrounding global warming, Future Greek put together a post entitled: Why Global Warming Is Bigger Than You Think. Keaton thought the part about the migration of displaced people is particularly relevant given the current debate in America concerning border security and immigration control. She asked what would happen if whole sections of the planet currently inhabited became unlivable?

Keaton was fascinated and more than a bit sad about Interesting Thing of the Day’s article on light pollution. When she found out that there are twinkling balls of light in the night sky she can’t see she was understandably upset. When I tried to explain that she's born in an age when artificial night-light is misused, she just got even more worked up. We didn’t even get into the safety hazards.

Speaking of responsible lighting, Jennifer has a post over at Climate Crisis Action Team about, “Operation Bright Christmas”. It’s a growing campaign to give compact florescent light bulbs as Christmas gifts this year. She knows it’s only July but campaigns take a while to build. Keaton was curious about Christmas. I told her it’s a special time of year when everyone seems nicer and we all give each other light bulbs. She’s excited already.

It’s official. Riversider writes at Save the Ribble this week about The Department for Environment, Food and Rural Affairs (Defra) launching a wetlands creation project, the first of it’s kind in Essex. Keaton was especially pleased to learn of this effort to provide not only flood protection (a bit over her head) but also a place for fish and birds to live. She likes fish and birds. Who doesn’t?

While she’s not ready for that birds and bees discussion Keaton was pleased to hear more from Riversider about the birds and the bees living at Lower Brockholes. We were both displeased to learn about another quarry planned for this beautiful farmland location. We learned together about recycled aggregates, a construction concept I was unfamiliar with.

Nick at bird DC was livid about vandals writing objectionable material over prehistoric Native American rock paintings. Keaton, a descendent of the natives of North America, was noticeably bummed about it. When she asked me why “the federal agencies charged with protecting these lands (BLM, Parks Service, Fish and Wildlife, Forest Service) are continually having their budgets cut by the Bush Administration and can rarely afford rangers and law enforcement officials to do patrol and education”, I didn’t have a polite answer for her.

Steve and Keaton have been friends for about four months. She was amused by his recent article comparing the American obesity epidemic with the American oil addiction. America’s Big Fat Oil Problem compares dieting with the current rage in alternative liquid energy sources. Energy is the number one source of pollution here in the USA.

The affect on the environment is easy to extrapolate, even for a four month old. Rather than reduce consumption the hunt is on for the next “Nutrasweet” for our automobiles. Keaton doesn’t have a weight problem. Hopefully she’ll never develop an oil addiction.

Education and Environmental Impacts, by Dan Rhoads at Migrations considers something I’ve thought about as a father and Keaton has considered when she ponders entering our education system. Better education concerning the environmental impacts of both individuals and society in general could lead to positive change. And are we teaching at all about how environment impacts society?

While not a daredevil (yet) Keaton was excited to read a story about those who fly though hurricanes in Greener Magazine, written by Harlan Weikle. Of interest was this quote, “people notice weather, they don’t notice climate”. Keaton agrees. She’s not happy when it’s raining but just like with the rest of us slower changes tend to go unnoticed.

Wow was Keaton impressed with City Hippy’s news of the week. The NICE car for Londoners, Lewis Gordon Pugh swimming the Thames (I had to help her with the pronunciation of your river) to raise awareness of climate change,

Marks and Spencer pushing fair and appropriately green business practices, SUV’s being charged 3X the congestion charge (Keaton pushed mommy for a wagon) and even a bit about the new Green Mountain coffee cup liners made from sugar not plastic. She thinks you’re an overachiever Al.

"Most people have heard it said that you shouldn't believe everything you read in the newspaper. Well, let me tell you, if you've spent your time with PR people, you'd feel that very, very strongly.” As a father I feel one of my greatest responsibilities, after feeding and clothing little Keaton, is to teach her to think with an open mind. A large part of that in this modern world is learning about propaganda. David Beers of The Tyee writes this week about public relations and how it’s shaping environmental debate.

Keaton hasn’t seen “An Inconvenient Truth” yet, but that not because she’s a republican. She just eats too often. If you’re looking for a bright and plucky review of Al Gore’s film and it’s place in the battle between truth and um… fair and balanced, then check out this piece by Frank at Sludgie. We book marked him.

Green LA girl, one of Keaton’s heroes, has an article she’s just not ready for. It’s about sexy green bras and I have to admit, that’s not what comes to mind when I think about the environment. However here it is, a written review of what’s available in the name of environmentally sound support. She’s got what’s hot and what’s not. Check it out.

Lastly Keaton was able to stay awake long enough as Sally at Veggie Revolution slipped in just under the wire with this piece about recycling W.V.O. That’s waste vegetable oil to those of you who aren’t making your own bio-diesel. The article is responsible, we think, in that it discusses openly some of the flaws of corn-based biofuels. Keaton loved it because she’s already familiar with titration tests and she liked the subversive mindset of these dumpster diving fuel finders.

Well that’s it.

Time for Keaton to say goodbye and find her mommy for some fuel of her own. I want to thank all of you for indulging me in the inclusion of such a young environmentalist. Sure I want her to think for herself, but it doesn’t hurt to show her some responsible paths to travel. Thanks again to City Hippy and Triple Pundit for putting this together. Be sure to check out last week’s Carnival at The Ester Republic and next week’s at Myke’s Weblog.

Best Wishes.

Aaron and Keaton


Future Geek said...

Great Carnival. Thanks for hosting

Jennifer Killpack-Knutsen said...

Very fun and creative job on the carnival, Aaron. Little Keaton is way too cute!

City Hippy said...

Great job and what a 8 month old son Coby is blushing in Keaton's direction ;)



Deirdre Helfferich said...

Excellent carnival, Aaron. A pleasure to read. I may have to order some of those environmentally sound bras.

olive said...

Hello Keaton! Hello Aaron!

Since you mentioned Whole Foods it might interest you to know that it's starting to come out that their CEO Mackey is funneling corporate profits into the "global warming is a hoax" right wing think tank Cato Institute. Cato Institute provides the Junk Science content for FOX News, which runs endless articles and interviews about how global warming is a hoax.

The story's here at Common Dreams Disturbing to say the least. I wrote a letter of complaint and emailed it to Whole Foods, and in two weeks there's been nary a peep. Figures. Cheers!!

Beanie Baby said...

Hi--I just found your blog via treehugger. Is it too geeky to admit that I'm thrilled to find so many other green blogs and the carnival of the green? How have I missed this up to now?

Anyway, thanks, and your daughter is adorable.