June 12th, 2009 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
We love big SUVs! We also love running the air-conditioning, towing huge RVs and campers, building dirty factories and every other carbon dioxide-spewing bad habit.
And by now, we all know that the United States and China are the leaders in greenhouse gas emissions, but President Obama is optimistic. He thinks the U.S. can lead the way on climate change.
Obama said the world needs target goals and not vague approaches, calling for tough decisions and concrete actions in order to stop a potentially cataclysmic disaster.
Just last month, natives of the Carteret Islands of Papua New Guinea had to abandon their homes due to encroaching seawaters.
The President urged nations with large carbon footprints to lead-by-example otherwise it will be difficult to persuade emerging nations to clean up their act. In December, countries will meet in the Danish capital of Copenhagen to discuss new climate change pacts and policies to counteract global warming.
Now, saying this is one thing. But can a nation of NASCAR fans oblige? I have my doubts.
Via the AFP.
Read More:Obama Says U.S. Can Lead on Climate Change
April 24th, 2009 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
Most people buy organic food because someone told them it’s pesticide-free, and that’s it. In our grab-and-go world, I doubt many consumers spend time researching what they eat.
But the benefits of organic food extend beyond the omission of pesticides. Organic farming is more environmentally-friendly than conventional agriculture, free of genetically modified organisms and organics are considered more nutritious and much more.
In this podcast, Peter Melchett, policy director of the United Kingdom’s Soil Association, discusses the less talked about advantages of going organic, such as humane treatment of organic food animals and lower emissions of climate changing greenhouse gases. Global food production is one of the major contributors to global warming.
Read More:Good Things You Might Not Know About Organics…
April 22nd, 2009 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
Being overweight or obese is bad. The health risks are significant. It’s common knowledge. You’re more likely to get heart disease and diabetes if you’re heavy, but could being fat whack the planet too? Experts say yes.
Think about it. I’m you’re thin taking a stroll to the store sounds like a great idea, but if you’re fat and have a hard time getting around. You’re not walking anywhere. Instead you’ll probably jump in the car for that five minute trip:
“When it comes to food consumption, moving about in a heavy body is like driving around in a gas guzzler,” and food production is a major source of greenhouse gases, researchers Phil Edwards and Ian Roberts wrote in their study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiology.
“We need to be doing a lot more to reverse the global trend toward fatness, and recognize it as a key factor in the battle to reduce (carbon) emissions and slow climate change,” the British scientists said.
They estimated that each fat person is responsible for about one ton of carbon dioxide emissions a year more on average than each thin person, adding up to an extra one billion tons of CO2 a year in a population of one billion overweight people.
I guess walking to and fro the refrigerator doesn’t count. European experts estimate each citizen contributes 11 tons of emissions each year. Now, when you consider the obesity epidemic, I guess it’s about to get a whole lot worse.
With gasoline at $8.20 a gallon in the United Kingdom, they might want to get a handle on all this.
Read More:Fat People Weighing Down the Planet
January 8th, 2009 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
It might look like something out of a 1960’s future world, but Drake Landing Solar Community, just outside of Calgary, Alberta, Canada is North America’s first solar-powered community, 52 houses getting most of their space-heating energy needs from an interconnected network of solar panels.
A total of 800 panels, installed on garage roofs throughout the neighborhood, generate 1.5 megawatts of thermal energy during the summer. And extra power is stored underground for the shorter, colder days of winter.
The homes sold quickly, especially after June testing revealed the system captured and stored exactly the amount of energy that had been calculated, with the last house going this October.
In 5 years, together the neighborhood will have saved up enough solar energy to provide 90% of the community’s heating needs during the winter.
Also, all the houses are gold-certified for being green. The average Canadian household emits 6 to 7 tons of greenhouse gas annually, but Drake Landing’s homes only produce 1 to 2 tons per year.
Read More:Canada Establishes Solar Powered Community
December 1st, 2008 - Gerald "Gerry" Pugliese
As a fast-developing country, China has become one of the world’s major emitters of climate warming greenhouse gases. This has sparked major concern among agriculture experts, claiming raising temperatures could worsen normal farming problems.
“Warm winters create an environment in which plant diseases and pests thrive, and these pose a serious threat to crops,” Xiong Wei, an expert on the correlation between climate change and agriculture with the Chinese Academy of Agricultural Sciences, told China Daily.
Drought is also a concern. Lack of rainfall, some associate with climate change, has forced officials to deliver clean water to regions of Southwest China, areas dependent on local farming. As of 2007, severe drought in Sichuan province has cost farmers nearly $38 million.
Read More:High Temps Threaten China’s Crops, Water