Why Should We Care About Wildlife?

The recent reports from the WWF were stark, a 60% decline in wildlife in the past 40 years, linked directly to human activities. Animals at risk of extinction seems to be an ever popular headline and the picture doesn’t look bright. Why should we care about our wildlife?

Before we can begin to think about the effect of such a loss on food chains and climate change and the global impact, a lot of media has failed to focus on the impact to the individual. Food shortages in the Western World, almost seems inconceivable because we see so many food establishments these days, and the price of the food can be so cheap. Of course there are people using food banks, but to the majority of people it is hard to comprehend literally having no food at all. This lack of understanding makes it hard to believe that there could be a time when there is no food, when humans have to literally force themselves into rationing to have any food supply. Instead, we’re going to try and create some understanding from the viewpoint of holidays or vacations abroad.

With the wealth of information at our fingertips, it seems that people are attracted by the stunning photographs of amazing lands, that seem to appear on bucket lists. There seems no problem with going on a plane, or using other forms of travel to see these amazing wonders like the Great Barrier Reef or some hidden cave in the deep dark depths of Asia. Who wouldn’t want to see these amazing sites?

The natural beauty of escapism is that it is a thriving land. Safari holidays are aimed at seeing the wildlife, but a barren land sees starving wildlife, which isn’t escapism. A snorkelling expedition is aimed at seeing the marine life under the water, but what’s inspiring about seeing dead animals and plants because they have been polluted? It inspires some people to act, which is good, but only if it’s not already too late. If the wildlife is dead that’s upsetting, it doesn’t create restoration.

We seem to have forgotten the experiment where a bean is placed in different conditions – soil, sand, dark or light. Of course, the ones that grow the worst are the beans in sand or the dark. We learned at 5 that a bean can’t thrive in the right conditions. We see travelling as a form of escapism, and it is. But if wildlife goes, so too does our escapism. Instead, what is left is a barren land.

In answer to the headline, we need to before we seriously damage our own health because of the risk to the lack of opportunity for escapism? Also, do we really want to belong to the generation that made Wildlife extinct? Nobody does, that would be shameful. We need to start prioritising how we think about our carbon footprint through the waste and pollution that we create. We need to think of more eco friendly resources. We need to start seeing governments thinking about planet sustainability: a beautiful world is where we want to live. We can only have that if the wildlife is thriving and we start making conscious choices now!

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Overcoming Fashion Pollution

The Fashion Industry is one of the biggest contributors to pollution, but it need not be be.

In this video from Ted, Amit Karla, comes up with three ways to overcome the pollution created from fashion.

It’s exciting as more solutions are arising to overcome the continuing pollution problems. In the UK, there are promotions from certain retailers to encourage clothes recycling. Some offer credit notes, other additional points through reward cards. It’s worth a look next time you’re out shopping.

If you want to know specific retailers who are offering a reward system to donate old, unwanted clothes, please leave comments below.

Are recipe and food delivery services worth it?

There has recently been a surge in companies that offer to recipes and deliver the groceries straight to our doorsteps, to save us time and cut down on food waste. But is it worth it?

Well, we tried one of these companies on their discount introductory offer and had a few areas to comment on.

Variety:

Approximately 30 new recipes go up a week, which makes the choices better. However, there are some weeks where there were more fish dishes compared to chicken, and more pork dishes compared to lamb. I think it would be harder if you were vegetarian or pescetarian to make because there is automatically less variety. However, overall it was easy enough to select 4 meals for the week. It also stopped the mundane routine of having the same food every single week.

Packaging:

This was an interesting one, because it made me rethink what was actually needed when buying a food shop. The cold food was insulated by wool in biodegradable plastic – great start. The food arrived in a cardboard box – again easily recycled. Vegetables that could be loose were i.e. a leek. This made me think well yeah, why do we feel the need to place single items in a bag, to go into another bag? That’s revolutionised the need of plastic bags for single items. Bags are still needed when purchasing multiple of an item to keep them together, but some supermarkets are moving towards using paper bags, so that’s much better. The sauce pots were still in little plastic tubs though, so maybe that could be rethought for cardboard ones. Overall, though I was impressed.

Delivery:

This was pretty poor. You have to commit to a full day spot 8am-5pm and it was Monday-Friday. Not all of us have that time or work from home, so that was inflexible. Also, on the day a specific time was texted that was stuck to, but again not all of us have the flexibility of time. You couldn’t select a time slot that was less than 9 hours. The other option was to pay £3 for evening delivery, which is a little expensive when you consider the cost of buying the food without offers. That has to be a work in progress.

Quality of food:

This was overall good. Of course, there was the odd item that looked like it had seen better days, but overall it was good quality and fresh.

Taste:

Without a shadow of doubt, it was some of the best home cooking I’ve ever made. The taste was amazing.

Cost:

With the introductory offers, it was fairly priced. However, once these end, it would be a costly service to keep up, if you consider that 4 meals for 2 people costs around £35. We are able to make meals for less than £7, granted not every single day, but that could become costly soon.

Ease of recipe:

Everything that we made was straight forward. We’re okay at cooking in our house, I wouldn’t be calling us chefs anytime soon though. The food was fairly straight forward to make.

Food Waste:

Here was the big winner. There was none. The box contained the exact amount of each ingredient that we needed.

Deliberately, I have chosen not to name the company that we used, if you would like this information, then I will name them in the comments below. However, I thought it was worth reviewing one of these services to understand what they offer without it being a marketing ploy to use one or the other.

The Environment – Practise What You Preach

 

I have chosen to look at schools, not to be controversial, not to be punitive, but as a means of understanding some of our climate and environment black holes. If we could come up with solutions, the impact would be huge!

Many schools have a walking bus. This is a fabulous idea. It cuts down on road accidents, parking disputes, hassle of finding parking and is overall, much better for our environment. Children should be exercising regularly and a walking school bus is a fantastic way to achieve many goals. However, what about other school practices? Are we being hypocritical to teach about environmental impact whilst contributing to it?

Within the curriculum this year, children will be learning about food chains, habitats and the effects of deforestation on the rainforest. Fantastic! Now, let’s take a look at the classroom walls. In some schools they are bare, others have hessian fabric and others will be backed with paper. What about the things posted on the boards – are they paper too or are they laminated so that they can be used again and again even though they will never decompose?

Children will in Years 2 and 6 sit standardised tests. A lot will go into their learning, listening, learning, hard graft, resources – a lot of resources, mainly paper. We are in the 21st century and yet the photocopier will be one of the most utilised machines in the school – that and the printer. Isn’t that astounding? Many classrooms have a waste paper basket, but have paper in nearly every corner and crevice of the room. The shelves, trays, cupboards and on the tables and work surfaces.

Let’s do some Maths as we’re talking about schools. In the junior years children will learn at least 10 subjects – Maths, English, Science, History, Geography, Music, Modern Foreign Languages, PE, RE, Art and Design Technology. Some schools will combine History, Geography and Design Technology in one book. Music, PE and MFL will largely be off the hook. (A range of photographs might be taken and uploaded onto the school’s social media.) That will be possibly 6 separate subject books, 7 if there is a separate book for handwriting. Most classes have approximately 30 children. 30 multiplied by 6 is 180 books per year (210 if handwriting is in a separate book). A child will probably have exercise books from being in Year 1, and will receive new sets for the next 6 years. 180 x 6 = 1080 books for a generation of school children in primary school alone, 36 per pupil (42 if there are 7 books) in their life at primary school.

That is in one school. There were approximately, 4.2 million pupils in primary school in 2012. That means that during the lifetime of this generation, approximately 4,536,000,000 exercise books were written in – just exercise books. It’s scary when we consider the amount of paper used on exercise books. I don’t write this to be controversial, but I do write this to be conscious of what we are using. That’s without calculating the other resources we use.

I know that some teachers and school leaders will look at this and ask themselves – what can we do? Paperless isn’t really a feasible option for schools. Learning needs to take place. Children need to practise their skills somewhere. Teachers need to be able to refer back to a child’s learning to grasp their understanding. However, there must be something that we can improve on, and if you have solutions I’d love to hear them.

 

Preserving Our Wildlife

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I was recently humbled to see this pumpkin out on a local walk. The reason, being that wildlife can feast on the leftovers of Halloween. Yes, the seeds are important too, but it’s a start and a head in the right direction.

I think that it’s growing more important every day, for us to focus on what we use and the waste we produce. Climate change is showing us that major changes need to be made and that we need to do a lot more to sustain this planet. We need to take responsibility.

Unfortunately, during that time, even though we were out for an hour, we spotted a grand total of 4 birds. The woodland path, especially in Autumn, should have been packed full of wildlife. If ever there was an indication that our wildlife is in danger of becoming extinct, this has to be it.

It’s things like providing seeds and nuts for local wildlife, or looking at our waste and seeing how once we’re done we can benefit the environment. Placing the food somewhere visible, like on stones or rocks, so that the food doesn’t become buried in the mulch. We took a walk as a family around a local park over the Summer. There were signs all over the park about what food was good for the birds – seeds, nuts and lettuce etc. The sign clearly asked for people not to feed the birds bread, and yet people still were. To add insult to injury, they were stood under the sign as they did it. Do future generations not deserve to look at the birds too? It’s about being a bit smarter about where we place the food too. It’s easy in a park to throw food to the birds paddling in a pond, but woodland offers places to hide.

We as humans, have a short time on this planet, but we must understand that other life has the right to live to. We should be respecting that and preserving nature for future generations. The sight of the pumpkins (I only uploaded one photograph) showed me that we are moving in the right direction, and it gave me hope. Now, I hope to see next year at least double the amount, heck quadruple the amount. Why not?

Creating Eco Systems

The new French law that rooftops on new buildings must be partially covered in solar panels or plants is a fantastic idea, and I wish other countries would take heed.

To understand the bigger picture, https://sciencing.com/make-ecosystem-bottle-5164713.html shows how reliant we are on insects, and the need to protect biodiverse ecosystems.

I love that everybody has to make a conscious effort to use cleaner energy sources. I prefer the covering in plants, just because it creates eco systems and is a clean source of insolation, but I understand the choice of solar panels too.

I also like the idea of green sheds https://www.popularmechanics.com/home/how-to-plans/how-to/g188/cool-green-sheds/ or adding hanging baskets to your shed. Water butts can also be run off these sheds, which are yet further ways to make green sheds.

I’ve also updated my home search engine to https://www.ecosia.org/ because they plant trees for every search, but be warned it takes about 45 searches before a tree can be planted. However, you can track your number searches, and it’s only a small change. As the number of users increases, the better the search engine operates.

I love that we (as a planet) are coming up with more eco friendly ways that extend to our homes, to preserve our planet.

I would love to hear of any small ideas that will have a big impact on preserving our planet!

Lion rescues warthog from other lions — Dear Kitty. Some blog

This 30 October 2018 video says about itself: Male Lion Rescues Warthog From Other Lions This male lion’s eagerness ruined the hunt for everyone! Cobus Visser, 54-year-old engineer, captured this incredible “rescue” while driving on the river road in Marloth Park last week. Cobus tells LatestSightings.com the story: “I was driving right next to the […]

via Lion rescues warthog from other lions — Dear Kitty. Some blog