By Susan Lutz
Hope seems lost. So often headlines tumble us backwards, forgetting that hope exists. But all is not lost. I found hope, and more, in these stories, these people, and these communities – each bringing rejuvenation to our environment and its communities. Moreover, it’s not just hope that these stories project. Within the actions and hearts of the people in these stories, a deep certainty resides in their power to change not only life for themselves but for others.
- Taking Back Detroit Neighborhoods with the Power of Organic and Community – Urban depression runs through many areas of large cities. Abandoned homes often represent a dark picture of an impossible task: how to bring life back to once vital areas. This Detroit neighborhood is taking back its homes and its community by using YouTube, gardening, and the support of each other to revitalize and reclaim a neighborhood.
- Planting Trees as a Mission – This 103-year-old woman Karnataka has planted not just one, two, or even 100 trees. Saalumarada Thimmakka, from India, has for the last 50 years planted over 400 banyan trees. But that’s not all. She also fights to get a hospital in her community.
- Urban Garden in the Heart of NYC – In a place least expected, the Urban Garden Center sprouted, providing fresh natural food and serving the community through gatherings and education. The Urban Garden Center has forged on, despite many obstacles. Their location houses a two-block stretch of city concrete under part of the railway system. What they do inspires others to bring the beauty and revitalization of greens into city living.
- Empowerment through Fair Trade – The success of companies will no longer be measured in dollars only. Perhaps that never was true success. Some companies achieve empowerment for their community and themselves by giving back. Alaffia is a company in Togo, Africa with a mission to invest in the community. They state that their goal is to end poverty and foster gender equality. They work on things such as educational projects, maternal health, and reforestation, to name a few.
Connecting with the community, demonstrating an organic lifestyle, and helping others through cooperation with the environment, brings forth prosperity, perhaps slowly, but surely. As the large corporations struggle with profits, they now look to the little – though giants in heart – as models for the future. The power of their certainty plants seeds of true change that will benefit all.
Billions of people around the globe are affected by the changes in climate every day. There are many stories that need to be told and many stories that need to be heard. My guest this week, Dayna Reggero, project director for the Climate Listening Project, has gathered stories from a variety of individuals and businesses about the direct effect of climate change on their lives and communities. Farmers, scientists, faith based and environmental groups are working towards solutions to adapt and build resilience to the extremes of climate change. We must connect actions to our words and work towards building a cleaner, greener world. Dayna has also been involved with the Showtime Series, Years of Living Dangerously, and has partnered with Laura Lengnick, author of the book Resilient Agriculture: Cultivating Food Systems in a Changing Climate. Dayna and Laura conduct storytelling workshops at colleges via the Cultivating Resilience Tour. For more info go to: daynareggero.com, @DaynaReggero and facebook.com/climatelisteningproject.
Can we feed the world without wrecking it? Are we farming ourselves out of food? My guest, Joel K. Bourne Jr. and I delve into those questions on this week’s show. Joel’s new book, THE END OF PLENTY: The Race to Feed a Crowded World, discusses the world food crisis, as it relates to population increase and environmental concerns. Farm land is becoming decimated, as water shortages are spreading globally, thus reducing growth of crops needed to feed the populace. Political unrest and revolutions have occurred in various hot spots around the world, as wheat crops have failed, which has lead to tightening grain supplies. Lives are lost as fights break out over bread. Will 3D printing of food save us? Probably not, but there is hope, as farmers are using innovations in food irrigation, as well as conservation methods to solve some of the problems. A new land ethic must be put into place to feed the world. For more information go to joelkbournejr.com and amazon.com for his book, THE END OF PLENTY.
#1525: The End of Plenty by The Many Shades Of Green on Mixcloud
In the 1984 film Flamingo Kid, Matt Dillon’s character Jeffrey Willis, dines with his family at Larry’s Fish House, where the slogan is “Any Fish You Wish”. Cut to the summer of 2015, and my guest Noah Bressman, who is a budding marine biologist at Cornell University, has a big wish. That wish is to encourage more sustainable fishing practices on both the industry side and the sporting side. Fisherman should catch and release fish not caught for food. Regulations should be enforced to ensure more sustainable fisheries and fishing practices. Find out what mummichogs are, and how Noah’s research on that ‘intertidal killfish’ was featured on the Discovery Canada Show, The Daily Planet. Learn about what the signs at your local grocery fish counters mean when they say “all natural”, “wild caught” or “certified sustainable”. Noah is making great strides in his research, and he will continue to do great things in years to come. For more information visit Noah’s Facebook Page: Noah and Carl Fish.
#1533: Any Fish You Wish by The Many Shades Of Green on Mixcloud
By Susan Lutz
The Right-Not-To-Know gained ground in congress in another attempt to keep information hidden and corporate operations thriving. If you want to know what’s in your food, take the time now to contact your Senator to repeal the DARK Act.
A few weeks ago, I wrote about the upcoming vote in the House:
The bill, dubbed The Dark Act: Deny Americans the Right to Know, #stopDARKact, is spun by supporters to look as though it is legislation supporting transparency, but according to a recent House Agriculture Committee on Biotech Labeling Laws with Just Label It chairman, Gary Hishberg, it’s an anti-labeling push to keep the consumer out of the labeling process. A proposed amendment, mandating GMO labeling is being backed by anti GMO groups.
Humor helps break down topics. Laughter relieves tension and lets the commentary get to the truth. To better understand the issues, here is a clip from Bill Maher who “labeled” the issue perfectly and asked if we wanted a legislation that was “the freedom from information act?”
The Organic Consumers Association is encouraging citizens to truly understand what is happening:
Now that the DARK Act has been approved by the House, we’ll have to stop it in the Senate. We have to move fast—because Monsanto is desperate to pass a bill that preempts mandatory GMO labeling laws at the state and federal levels, before Vermont’s GMO labeling law takes effect next year.
This legislation hides the ultimate goal of furthering interests of a larger, corporate interest. When meat is in clear, pretty cellophane packages and the only thing you see on the label is the price, it’ll be too late to ask: Where did the beef come from? And what’s in it?
Take action now. Contact your Senators. Share. Let others know.
#LabelGMOs #GMO #Food #Ag #RightToKnow
According the the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, childhood obesity has more than doubled in children and quadrupled in adolescents within the past 30 years. Enter the National Farm to School Network, which is working to bring local, fresh foods to school across the U.S., in an effort to reduce obesity, and bring healthy food choices to cafeteria menus. My guest this week is Jaime Lockwood, Development Director at the Farm to School Network, which helps connect local farmers with schools, chefs to cafeterias, and students to gardens. We talk about the importance of the Farm to School Act of 2015, and discuss how chefs inspire healthy eating, environmental awareness, and fitness via wellnessintheschools.org. Jaime is also a board member of Urban Tree Connection, an organization based in Philadelphia, that works to educate and develop community driven greening and gardening projects on vacant land. For more information visit farmtoschool.org. and urbantreeconnection.org
#1527: Farm to School by The Many Shades Of Green on Mixcloud
Neither rain, nor fog, nor soggy dew could dampen the spirit of the Clearwater 2015 Festival. We spoke to many environmental activists and green entrepreneurs who are creating ideas, and spreading the message about the need to be proactive stewards of Mother Earth. Music echoed throughout the festival, with many performers motivating the populace to take a stand and raise their voices on environmental and social justice issues. Music icon David Crosby, sang new songs with lyrics that commented on the nation’s current state of affairs, and implored people to email, call or show up at the offices of their elected officials and make some noise. Pete Seeger would have been proud to see his vision perpetuated. For more info go to clearwater.org.
#1525: 2015 Clearwater Music Festival by The Many Shades Of Green on Mixcloud