"I made this garden for the bees."
My friend Dana said that the other night as she was watering the vibrant green and red chard growing in the small urban garden she cultivates with her sister. I teared up... Wow.
I consider myself a pretty earth friendly person, however, Dana and Jenna, they truly know how integral it is for us humans to take responsibility for what we are doing to the Earth and how we can have less of an impact... They make their own shampoo, deodorant, ghee, etc. Geez. I only wish I was that committed!
Anyway, Dana and Jenna along with some other friends truly inspire me to learn and continue to cultivate that symbiotic relationship I aspire to have with the Earth as well.
My thinking about this started three or four years ago when my ex boyfriend and I went to get some coconut water. He stood in front of the myriad of bottled drinks and I wondered what was taking him so long. He asked me, "Which one of these do you think causes the least amount of harm?" I was stunned. For the first time in my life, I realized how little I ask myself that question. What does cause the least amount of harm to the earth? What is my role in protecting the Earth? Does my one purchase make a difference?
Why wouldn't I want to protect the Earth? I LOVE Earth! I have loved the feeling of the sand on my feet since before I could say sand or describe it's texture. I have touched every leaf I have ever come across. I have marveled at the beautiful colors, textures, sounds, smells and tastes I have encountered while exploring Earth. Why wouldn't I continue to ask myself how I can cause the least amount of harm?!
In our society this is so hard! Everything we buy comes in some sort of container or has some chemical that is going to kill or alter the development of some poor unexpected tiny creature in the ocean, the ones I am convinced we need! Even if it is recyclable... That doesn't tell us what will happen with it once it is put in that blue bin. AND even if it is "all natural"... is it?
We have all heard, "If I knew better, I would do better."
Here are some research articles that might help: This blog is more about sharing articles or information rather than my own thinking about these issues. I am not an environmentalist, per se, but I am a researcher- I gather information (whether it be statistical, lab or field base studies and findings, and/or empirical). I don't yet know how to articulate what I know in a synthesized way but I am working on it!
Corn... Ugh. Can't say enough!
When you buy food, consider what market you are supporting... While I occasionally eat corn in restaurants, I steer clear of purchasing corn and it's bi-products on my own. I'll invest my money elsewhere.
What is bioaccumulation?
Pollutants in our fish? Bioaccumulation!
Think about the fish you eat... What are you putting in the water?
THINK ABOUT WHAT KIND OF MEAT MARKET YOU ARE SUPPORTING AS WELL...
These are crazy research findings.
Ok... So what do I buy and where do I get the info I need?
Environmental Working Group came up with lists and environmental ratings for 45 fruits and veggies. There is a more simplified list on Tree Hugger that you can access. (Such an appropriate name... ha ha.)
That being said, I am going to continue to grow as a Tree Hugger and develop and articulate a language around what it means to be a conscious consumer.
Simplified version of what I know so far:
-buy local (visit your farms, know where you get your food. polyculture farms? yes. monoculture? no. pesticides? never.)
-know your meat! Please take a look at the EWG Website on this.
-less processing= less packaging? great! most anything in a box or a bag is simply not food anyway...
-think about what you dump into the water... ? I am still thinking about this one.
Here in San Francisco, I am blessed to be surrounded by people who appreciate these sorts of conversations and I am going to milk them for all their intellectual beauty... opposing opinions and all.
Let's keep bees alive... We need them.
Read about it!
NPR NEws Bee Video
All of the blue links above are portions of the data I have hoarded. If anyone wants more- contact me!