Browsing Tag

environmentalism

Cradle to Cradle: RTH April bookclub selection

Book Club, Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Random Fun Stuff By April 28, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments

cradle to cradle

Do you guys ever read a book with ideas in it and think, “Why the hell aren’t we already doing this if it’s so simple?”

That was my over all impression of Cradle to Cradle. And The Upcycle, which is the sequel that I went ahead and read as well because Cradle to Cradle was short. You didn’t have to read the sequel if you didn’t want, but if you liked Cradle to Cradle you would probably like The Upcycle so check it out.

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Can we talk about GMOs?

Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Gardening By April 14, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , No Comments

Having trouble with the GMO debate? Me too. Lets talk about it.

The point when I first made up my mind about GMOs was in a college biology class in 2010, when a student brought up GMOs in class, and the professor said that we should be very concerned about GMO technology, indicating that it was a troubling practice that we should all be wary of. This same professor had discussed other crunchy philosophies with me that I felt on the fence and maybe a little skeptical about, such as vaccine refusal and raw milk, and I felt pretty confident in the things she said about those, vaccines are safe and effective, raw milk is a waste of money, etc., etc. So when she straight up said in class that GMOs were bad, I figured that sealed the deal. I became pretty hardcore in my opposition to GMOs.

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Beyond Bikes and Busses, Part 2: Human Powered Transit

Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Community, Social Justice By February 22, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments

This is part four in a series I’m running about car culture. If you would like, feel free to read part one, part twopart three, and part four, which make the case for why we should move away from car culture, what barriers prevent us from doing so, and what alternatives we have to it. Subscribe and you’ll be notified by email when the rest of the posts in the series are published, as well as other cool posts about urban homesteading, environmentalism, and feminism!

What was originally meant to be one post on the various alternatives to a car centered culture has gotten so long that I decided to break it up into multiple posts. There are, it turns out, a lot of alternatives to car culture we could be utilizing, and that means there is a lot to discuss. That’s the benefit of discussing this in a series rather than trying to squeeze it all into one post. We left off talking about the different options for mass transit that we could use to replace some of our car usage in society, their benefits and their applications. Today, we’re going to discuss personally owned, human powered transit.

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A Valentines lesson in conscious consumerism

Conscious Consumerism, Holidays, Parenting By February 12, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , 2 Comments
Elijah's Valentines this year

Elijah’s Valentines this year

I have never been big on Valentines. I don’t know why, I used to claim that it was because of feminism or commercialism, and even that it reminded me of the pain of growing up not being conventionally pretty and not feeling like I had the hope for romance the holiday celebrated, but maybe it’s just that I don’t like this time of year. Its cold and snowy and I just want to start planting stuff so bad. Who’s bright idea was it to put a holiday exclusively about romance in the middle of a season where it’s too cold to wear anything pretty or sexy on a date? (Probably someone who didn’t live in USDA Zone 4-5, I guess) It just seems like a holiday that shouldn’t be that big of a deal, like St. Patricks Day or Groundhog Day, but that people get waaaaay too obsessed over. As an adult, the part of Valentine’s Day that bugs me the most is the school party. Don’t get me wrong, I’m all about holiday parties at school, but I just don’t like Valentines Day. The era of Pinterest has only made school parties higher pressure than ever, and I can manage that at Halloween (because I love Halloween), but Valentine’s Day? Blech.

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Poverty fetish: Pros and cons of trendy simplicity

Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Community, Social Justice By February 1, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments

I recently read this article about poverty appropriation, and it brought up a lot of feelings in me about the rise of trendy simplicity. I grew up fairly poor. Not super poor, probably on the richer end of poor, always hovering just around the poverty line. We also lived in fairly wealthy neighborhoods. My mom worked her ass off (often in multiple jobs) to keep us living in those parts of town, even though we could have likely afforded much more in other parts of town, because the schools were better in the wealthier ends of town, and probably because of some sort of internalized classism my mom felt. Because of this, I always felt I was in some uncomfortable middle area between the middle and lower classes. I was definitely dramatically poor at home, and did not fit in with peers, but in other parts of my city, I felt like the bougiest poser on earth. To this day, I have weird class issues, many of which have only been exacerbated by having married into a more middle class family.

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Start a revolt against AllOrNothingism

Activism, Climate Justice and Environmentalism By January 25, 2016 Tags: , , , , , , 3 Comments

AllOrNothingism is a plague on social progress and should be revolted against.

There is a problem in our culture. I have noticed it more times than I can count over the course of my adult life, and I despise it. It’s something I’ve come to refer to as AllOrNothingism. Its the idea that if an action you are taking won’t do much, it is never worth doing. If you can’t do something all the way, then you shouldn’t bother doing it at all. I want to call bullshit on this idea right away.

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The annoying classism of tidying up – KonMari minimalism vs. environmental anticonsumerism

House keeping, Social Justice By December 28, 2015 Tags: , , , , , , , , , 17 Comments

The first time I heard of The Life Changing Magic of Tidying Up and the KonMari method of housekeeping, I was intrigued. I am, after all, a wreck when it comes to keeping house, if there was some new house keeping innovation, I wanted to hear about it. People were gushing about this book. Calling it life changing, revolutionary, even spiritual. That’s one hell of a cleaning book! People described to me its revolutionary message to the world, “Keep nothing that doesn’t bring you joy!” They’d say, half a gasp, half reverence.

And I’d be left blinking. That’s it?

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Environmentalism vs. NIMBYism

Activism, Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Social Justice By September 15, 2015 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , No Comments

The other night I went to a meeting hosted by Adams County Communities for Drilling Accountability Now, or ACCDAN. They were opposing the drilling of a new natural gas well in the area, a so called super well, which would be a large facility. Fracking contributes a great deal to climate change through the release of methane, a potent greenhouse gas. There are also potentially health risks to people from drinking potentially contaminated drinking water and breathing contaminated air around the facility, but mostly my concern is the climate. I was excited to be able to do some activism in my own community, but I expected the turnout to be small. I live in a middle class community that is largely conservative, and conservatives tend to uphold the Drill Baby Drill mantra. 

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Communicating environmentalist issues

Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Current Events By January 5, 2015 Tags: , , , , , , , , , , , , 4 Comments

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Last semester in my horticulture class discussion about the Keystone XL pipeline came up. One student said he hoped that construction on it would start soon, because it would create jobs and lower oil prices. He said he understood that environmentalists were afraid of oil spills or whatever, but that the risk of that was pretty low and the benefits were worth it.

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People’s Climate March

Activism, Climate Justice and Environmentalism, Community, Current Events By September 8, 2014 Tags: , , , , , , , , , No Comments

I’m sure everyone has heard of the People’s Climate March taking place in New York City September 21st, and for a brief moment in time, I thought I would be able to attend it.  That would have been a dream come true for me, but unfortunately, due to some medical appointments I have to keep having to do with the surrogacy, I am unable to attend.  

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