Climate change has become the biggest long-term threat to this city’s future. And that’s because it is linked to water, health, air pollution, traffic disruption from floods, housing vulnerability to landslides — which means we can’t begin to address any of the city’s real problems without facing the climate issue.
—  Arnoldo Kramer, Mexico City’s chief resilience officer, as reported by Michael Kimmelman, “Mexico City, Parched and Sinking, Faces a Water Crisis,” The New York Times, 17 Feb. 2017
Crowdsourcing my homework cause why the fuck not?

What do you look for when you are looking at a new area to live with a high degree of sustainability and walkability?

For me, I’m looking at

  • Nearest Market
  • Gas Station
  • Drug Store
  • Book Store
  • Park with playgrounds, baseball field, soccer field
  • bus stops and public transportation options
  • bike rental places
  • movie theater
  • Gym
  • Apt/Condos with nice community facilities for bbq’ing and a pool
  • Town houses with backyards for that sense of single-family dwelling without actually taking up a whole lot
  • Bank
  • misc stores and retail area
  • community center for concerts, townhall/govt stuff
  • School

What am I missing? What’s important to you if you had a moderate sized piece of land that could hold say a  high school, a couple apartment buildings and a strip mall or two between LAX Airport and Venice beach, just down Culver blvd where it dead ends.

If you had to redevelop that area what would you want?

I’m thinking a Co-Op for student housing for LMU and Santa monica College, Perhaps even family housing for the schools, housing for LAX employees with a direct shuttle to and from work, and various condos/townhouses for employees of Google and the other tech companies in the Playa Vista area with shuttles to there as well to save on transportation/gas/be greener.

But lemme hear your ideas!

NOVA Next: Going Vegan Isn’t the Most Sustainable Option for Humanity

The vegan diet uses no perennial cropland, making it a less effective use of land than you might suspect.

Researchers found that the carrying capacity—the size of the population that can be supported indefinitely by the resources of an ecosystem—of the vegan diet is actually less substantial than two of the vegetarian diets and two out of the four omnivorous diets they studied.

Read more

4

Here’s how hospitals can heal through sustainability

  • According to a June 2016 study, if the U.S. health care industry were a nation, it would rank 13th in greenhouse gas emissions.
  • While a previous study found the health care industry caused 8% of the country’s carbon emissions, the new study found these emissions caused 12% of acid rain, 10% of smog formation and 9% of respiratory disease from particulate matter in 2013.
  • Moreover, hospitals are among the top 10 in their communities for water use and the single largest users of chemical agents. The volume of hospital waste is staggering — more than 2.3 million tons per year.
  • By taking steps to limit these environmental impacts, the health care industry can promote the long-term health of our communities, particularly the most vulnerable populations. Read more

In collaboration with Dignity Health

Considering that indigenous lands hold 80% of global biodiversity, it is no surprise that extractive industries want their resources. If left to the industries, the Amazon’s Sacred Headwaters would become one big oil field, and the watersheds of the Brazilian Amazon would be destroyed by agribusiness and mega-dams.
— 

The path to preserving the Amazon for future generations is through protecting the rights and lands of its indigenous stewards

Amazon Watch & I are working together to protect indigenous lands and rights across the Amazon Basin. Consider helping out: support.amazonwatch.org/fundraiser/866075 

6 things i stopped buying: minimalism journey (+ reduce waste)

1. Makeup Remover Wipes: instead, use a washcloth (preferably black) and apply coconut oil or almond oil to the cloth (or face), then use the cloth to wipe your entire makeup off until satisfied. *(continue with face wash routine or face mask)

benefits: reusable // machine washable // save money // gentle on the skin // effectively removes makeup

2. Plastic Toothbrushes:  instead, buy a pack of bamboo toothbrushes on amazon or a general store. use these brushes as you would any other brush and thoroughly brush to improve oral health.

benefits: organic // reusable // decomposable // cleanses teeth effectively // eco-friendly // BPA free bristles

3. Multi-Step Facial Cleansers & Name Brand Body Washes: instead, use African Black soap for both your body and face with your preferred method of washing (electronic brush, hands, or wash cloth). for more simple face washes, consider using vegan and/or organic facial washes that work for your skin type.

benefits: multipurpose // improves overall skin health // all skin types (especially acne prone or oily) // single-step process // organic // save money

4. Plastic Water Bottles: instead, use a simple stainless steel bottle that you can refill throughout the day and keep up with.

benefits: reusable // washable // aesthetic // easy to monitor and handle // eco-friendly

5. Face Moisturizers: instead, use carrier oils (such as coconut oil, argan oil, almond oil, castor oil) that work with your skin type/skin needs *(you can try combining them with essential oils such as tea tree oil, lavender oil, etc.)

benefits: organic // improves skin health // no harsh chemicals // save money // longer lasting // multipurpose

6. Animal Cruelty Makeup: instead, buy makeup products that you truly need (wear daily) from companies that are Animal-Cruelty FREE and/or vegan. do your research and spend your money wisely. some may seem expensive, but consider how much some high-end brands benefit from not being animal-cruelty free *(invest in vegan and/or organic products too).

benefits: eco-friendly // animal-cruelty free // healthier for skin // long-term benefits // *vegan and/or organic

scientist: in spite of common misconceptions, nuclear power is actually quite safe, with a number of studies showing it causes less deaths than either wind or solar power

me: but what about the giant nuclear spiders it creates

scientist: that’s not a real thing

me: sounds like something someone about to be eaten by giant nuclear spiders would say

alexandra-again  asked:

(rape tw) Hi, I'd like to ask you a question about cows, since WADTT recommended you on livestock. I'm worried that artificial insemination of cows might be rape, as some vegans claim. I've seen videos, and while the cows neither kick nor collapse, they seem to be trying to get away from the syringe, maybe. It's similar when they mate with bulls, and people have said that "bulls are rapey", but I can't quite accept nature being like that.

Unfortunately, nature is like that. There is a lot of rape in the animal kingdom - ducks and dolphins are kinda notorious for it. Penguins have been observed doing it, chimps, and bedbugs practice “traumatic insemination” which….well I’d advise not image searching that. Nature -is- like that. It is wrong to apply human ethical standards to natural animal behavior. Yes it’s sort of disturbing that frogs will accidentally drown females when they restrain the females during mating. Yes it’s very disturbing that there exists a fish whose entire life cycle involves swimming up a sea cucumber’s anus to eat its gonads.  Bulls will try to mate with unwilling cows. Sometimes the cow puts up with it, sometimes she doesn’t. It’s the same with most livestock - roosters can be especially persistent in that way.   But we cannot apply human ethics to animal behavior. And it is wrong of us to apply it in such a way that it harms the animal (see the issues with vegan cat food).

Regarding AI and rape, remember that the cows basically don’t know what AI is. To them it is basically another medical procedure - their response might be to step away from the AI tech a bit, but that would also occur during normal vet procedures like checking where the cow is in her estrous cycle (which is done via palpation of the ovaries through the rectal wall, and can be more awkward for the person doing it than for the cow, or at least it was when I had to do it in repro lab). If anything, because AI techs are well-trained and held to high standards for humane handling and performance (remember, stressed cows don’t get pregnant easily), it’s very humane. Unfortunately, for any animal, it’s not like the vet can explain what procedure is going on and why, even if it is needed. So just because the cow is moving away from the AI tech does not necessarily mean she is in undue distress  and that the procedure is inhumane, any more than your dog shying away from a vaccine would. 

Secondly, AI allows us to perform lots of rapid genetic selection. Because you can inseminate more cows per bull ejaculate using AI than natural cover (in AI, one ejaculate can be split into multiple straws of semen that can be used in AI, any of which could successfully impregnate a cow) you can spread the genes of a successful bull far wider than if you used natural cover, meaning your rate of genetic progress is faster.  Many of the gains in the US dairy herd are due to AI and its impact on better genetic selection - compared to 1950, the US is producing 3x as much milk with half the number of cows! (source: Midwest Dairy Association) That’s a major improvement for sustainability as well, since environmental impacts decrease as milk production per cow increases. But this wouldn’t be possible without the increased genetic selection rate AI allows - better genetics can be spread further and help more herds per year. 

It’s also a cost savings for farmers - the producer with the cows doesn’t have to pay for the year-round upkeep of a bull who is only useful during the breeding season. Bulls are also a labor hazard to keep around because of their aggression and large size. Natural cover doesn’t always go well for the bull, either. Sometimes the cow decides she doesn’t want to be around that bull at all, and the male can suffer damage ranging from testicular torsion to broken penises, and sometimes the bull needs to be euthanized as a result. It’s incredibly rare, and can happen even when the farmer does everything to prevent it (like putting experienced bulls in with first-time heifers or vice versa), but it is a risk of any sort of natural cover situation. AI is much less potentially traumatic for both cow and bull. 

So honestly, any time someone tries to apply human moral concepts like rape to animal behavior, be careful re: what they’re trying to sell you on. In this case, they are trying to make a humane practice that is important for sustainable agriculture seem like something barbarous, and that is wrong. If they want to make their case, they can do it without lying about animal agriculture.  If you want to learn more about dairy production and what exactly is involved, contact the extension adviser for your county. If you come with a honest curiosity and willingness to listen, people want to correct misconceptions and counter anti-livestock propaganda. Livestock producers aren’t heartless, they care deeply about their animals and want them to have happy, low-stress lives, too. The US dairy industry provides a sustainable, high-quality source of protein and vitamins and is constantly working towards improving both production and sustainability. 

@why-animals-do-the-thing

4

Was so impatient to try some of my not-fully-grown produce today and it tasted heavenly 🌿