Wednesday, November 24, 2010

Unhealthy Foods

Often we forget about what we're putting into our mouths, because we get hungry, have cravings and often need to grab something to eat fast. 
If you can spend a little time to learn new habits it will be rewarding. By spending time, I mean do a little research on alternative foods and ways to cook.  The first time you go to the shop to buy something new, look at what is made from and where it was made. The next time you go back you will already know to just grab the better item from the shelf.
Not sure about switching from cheap vegetable oil for your cooking? Well bigger supermarkets now have alternatives that will make you feel so much better - look for rice bran oil, coconut oil or ghee.
Realised your margarine or spread contains a lot of things you don't like - think about returning to plain butter - and watch out for those that say they're spreadable butter but add more than just cream to make it soft.
Here is an interesting blog on the subject.

Thursday, November 11, 2010

Fair@Square - Fair Trade

Looking forward to this festival, to learn more about how to buy fair traded products.

There are many items people really don't think about much, that mean the people growing, making or supplying the products get a really bad deal and unfair pay.  If they bought a product with the fair-trade logo would mean the producers and makers would get a much better deal:
I now refuse to buy chocolate, coffee, tea or cotton without this logo.

Thursday, October 28, 2010


2 or 3 small items (like a magazine, a bag of chips, a t-shirt, a new dvd, etc.) can be carried in the hand easily to your car/home/office.  
You don’t need the bag to carry your lunch & chopsticks from the shop. Soft drinks are designed to be held in the hand not in a bag.

Some of us cart around handbags that could easily accommodate a small re-useable & washable bag.
Say no thanks or I don’t need a bag before, during or after they give it to you. It saves the retailer money too.
Do you know plastic is made from oil – more plastic can help push up the price of petrol!

‘Greenhouse emissions can be cut by reducing plastic bag use

A 2006 Australian Bureau of Statistics article revealed that the nation consumes approximately 6.9 billion plastic bags, or 36,850 tonnes of plastic, each year, which equates to just under one bag per person per day.  Although requiring less energy than a paper bag to manufacture, recycled plastic bags and fabric bags such as calico compare more favourably.  If one person using 520 plastic shopping bags per year switched to calico bags they would reduce their greenhouse gas emissions by 3.6 kg in a year.’ 

Wednesday, September 22, 2010

Too many people

Interesting documentary on recently, by Sir David Attenborough, about the growth of human population and it's impact on the earth.
I couldn't agree more, there are too many people on this planet to live sustainably.  At the rate we're growing there won't be much left for the human race to use and enjoy - water, land, biodiversity.  This is my main reason for not having my own children, and it is a hard topic to bring up with all my friends and family who want the enjoyment of spawning and raising their own kids.

My question to them is, do you want to bring children into this dying world, especially when your having a family makes such an impact?  Harsh I know, which is why I've never asked one of them this question directly.
Their answer may be, why do I have to forfeit having kids to save the earth, when there are so many people in third world countries having large families?  Shouldn't they abstain?
Every person has the right to have their own child, it is the most natural thing on earth so why should someone be denied the right.

As Sir David pointed out, education is the key. The underprivileged should be given access to education and to basic medical facilities, to improve their knowledge and reduce birth rates.  Absolutely, every person should also have this right.

But I do not believe this will solve the issue. The rate of consumption in the rich countries is appalling, and could be better utilised. However the more people with access to consumerist society, the increase in use of our natural resources.  There are too many rich people in this world, this is the problem

Sometimes I get mad, although I am not maternal I have given up the pleasure of having kids to reduce the human population, and put my life's work into improving our environmental impact, but not for myself, for the greater good of people and all those that do get to enjoy raising children, and their children and so on.  Yet these people who will benefit from my actions, do they care?

Saturday, May 29, 2010

What are our choices for eating out?

Faced with the dilema of enjoying food & eating out but an environmental consciousness leads to feelings of guilt if you suspect the food is not ethically sourced.

Some of the concerns - overfishing, meat & egg production, unseasonal produce, food miles!

How do you consider all these when you just want to eat a tasty meal at a good restaurant. It is difficult and many of us don't want to be rude and ask questions about the source of the food.

But maybe a couple of things you can consider:
  • There are some restaurants that will give a description if the food is free-range, local, in-season, organic.  Try to support these guys who choose to give you information.
  •  Choosing fish - many of us love fish but don't cook it so see it as a good option when eating out
    • do they say what sort of fish it is?  if not, it may be a standard species that is overfished or farmed
    • salmon & barramundi are very common these days but will come from a farm, so avoid unless they're listed as 'wild'
    • standard fish & chips is made with Flake - which is shark and very unsustainable
    • make yourself familiar with better fish & seafood choices such flathead or squid, so if they're on the menu you can choose them 
  • You may feel like a food that is more suited to the season, and some places are more likely to serve more seasonal dishes, such as heavier, root vegetable type  in winter, or fresh salad or fruit in summer.
  • Just because your eating out doesn't mean you have to eat meat.  
    • Do you eat meat at every meal? we don't need to eat meat more than a few times a week to get enough nutrients from it.
    • The more people that choose vegetable dishes, the more restaurants will provide them.  As someone who doesn't eat red meat, and doesn't like eating chicken & fish out unless I know where they've come from, I despise going to restaurants where there is only 1 or 2 vegetarian choices. Meat is not the centre of our lives.
  • consider food miles.
    • is the main ingredient from a country far away?  is there something produced locally on offer?
  • Drink choice.
    • imported wine and beer is nice, but there is often a good local option instead.  save trying the imported stuff for when you visit that country.
  • and lastly, are you going to leave food on the plate?
    • food waste is not sustainable. order what you know you can eat. you can always get something else if you are still hungry afterwards.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Potential business names

business names?
save some earth for me
enough earth for everyone
g-design (Good, green, goddess, gold, galant, gorgeous, gawdy, given)
find me happiness
find me splendour
find me a safe place

it ain't over...
healthy green livin'
plain & simple

it should say green, environmentally friendly, healthy design, touching the earth lightly. Temporarily, in harmony with the earth.