Tuesday, December 21, 2010
- Readily available materials (sand, water, straw, clay)
- Sturdy (some have been around for hundreds of years and survived multiple earthquakes)
- Takes a long time to complete
- May not be suited for a colder climate for insulation
- Uses mostly reclaimed or reused materials
- Minimal costs
- Well insulated
- Quick to build
- Seems more costly than Cob
- Some claims of tire off-gassing (most likely untrue but it turned Julie off it for awhile)
- Newer building technique and therefore possible unforeseen complications
Monday, December 13, 2010
Wednesday, November 3, 2010
Tuesday, October 26, 2010
Among other depressing news (http://www.globaltvedmonton.com/birds+dead+after+toxic+landing/3728942/story.html), several hundred more ducks have met their untimely and horrific deaths in the tailing ponds of Alberta's oilsands. This coming just days after they received a fine for $3,000,000 for 1,600 ducks having died last year! Clearly they have not learned their lesson, and how would they when $3,000,000 is a miniscule fraction of the profits they make on a daily basis.
What further grinds my gears is that the Alberta government (while they issue a lot of strong rhetoric) is completely inept and fails to see the gravity of the situation when all they can think of is their pockets being lined with oil-drenched money. They fail to see that the health of the entire environment is at stake, and focus on more trivial concerns like the health of smokers who control their own fates (http://www.cbc.ca/canada/calgary/story/2010/10/25/edmonton-alberta-tobacco-lawsuit.html). Yet they ignore the suffering of those who have done nothing but been the victims of living in the shithole that is "civilized" society.
Just on a note to end, if people think I'm "angry" then I just have to retort that if they are NOT angry, they clearly aren't looking hard enough or just do not give a damn.
Sunday, September 26, 2010
Saturday, June 5, 2010
Veganism for the Environment
Anthropogenic climate change, mass extinctions, and environmental degradation, has more people in Canada than ever citing environmental issues their greatest concern. Many organisations have provided guidelines for reducing our ecological footprint. Most have fallen short on THE most effective way of helping the environment: a transition to a plant-based lifestyle.
Reports, such as the United Nation’s, “Livestock’s Long Shadow,” often get ignored, instead favoring reducing pollution from other industries. This document details the effect of meat production on the environment. It found that 18% of anthropogenic greenhouse gases are created from animal agriculture. This makes animal usage a greater threat to climate change than the entire automotive industry. So why all the hype about capping industrial sources when one need look no further than their plate to reduce their personal emissions is beyond me. Don’t get me wrong; I am for reducing any source of pollution to the best of our abilities. A Vegan lifestyle is the most effective way to do this.
That just entails the emission impact of terrestrial animal exploitation. Many consume fish as a ‘healthier’ meat alternative. This also has negative consequences. All bony fish sequester carbon by secreting calcium carbonate. Therefore, over-fishing removes a major source of carbon sequestration. The removal of plankton eating fish doubly impacts climate change. Instead of carbon being consumed by these fish, it goes to the ocean floor, decomposes and then erupts into the atmosphere as methane gas. This affects the coastal environment by creating dead-zones and contributes vastly to atmospheric greenhouse gases.
Climate change is not the sole concern when we consume animal products. ~60-70% of corn and soybeans go to feeding livestock. The energy input-output is only that high because factory-farmed animals aren’t even given enough space to perform simple bodily functions. According to natural energy pyramid economics, only ~10% of plant matter’s energy makes it to the average meat consumer’s body, making it an enormously inefficient farming practice. This requires more land, and greater energy input for extraction. With over 1/3 of Earth’s arable land used for agriculture, ~30% of the Earth’s arable land going to use for animal agriculture. This has lead to mass desertization, deforestation, soil erosion, etc.
With ~50 billion animals slaughtered annually to satiate human demand, meat production requires copious amounts of resources. The amount of water required to produce the pound of meat versus a pound of vegetables is enormously higher. Clean water being scarce for many, this is a huge waste of water.
Dealing with farm animal waste environmentally prudently is nearly impossible. Especially when you’re injecting hormones and antibiotics into the animals, waste run-off and the use of manure leads to water contamination, outbreaks of bacterial infections, and ecological dead-zones.
Hunting also creates environmental detriments. While natural predation contributes to evolutionary adaptation, human hunting diminishes wildlife populations (sometimes causing extinction). Fishing tends to target stronger animals, as they lunge at lures. This leaves fewer, less aggressive fish to mate – if they are able. This is paralleled in land-based hunting, where the strongest animals would be the ones to venture closest to human encampments. Trap-’hunting’ and long-lining for animals is also ecologically destructive by its haphazard approach, sometimes even killing endangered species. All of these have serious and irreversible ecological consequences.
This isn’t an extensive list of environmental devastations from animal usage, just the more consequential ones. This ultimately begs the question, ‘Can a person even be an animal-utilising environmentalist?’
Friday, May 7, 2010
Monday, February 1, 2010
product. First and foremost you make contradictory claims regarding
your product. On one hand you claim the product is "natural" and
biodegradable. On the other you make claims that your product is
long-lasting and can be handed down generations. Which is it exactly?
Secondly, you associate yourself with animal agribusiness by using byproducts of the animal agriculture industry (while being an animal agriculture industry yourself). In case you aren't aware, animal agriculture contributes
more greenhouse gas emissions than the entire automotive industry
combined (18% vs 15% respectively). Not only is greenhouse gas
emissions an environmental concern, but there is almost inevitable
waste run-off into ground water, streams, rivers, etc. These create
ecological cesspools and dead zones.
The other point of contention is the chemicals used in your products.
Many are known carcinogens, poisons and environmental toxins designed
to prevent an animal's body from doing what it naturally does when it
dies: decay. Once again, counter-intuitive to the claims you produce a
The amount of petroleum used to produce a synthetic "fur" is actually
vastly less than producing a real fur product, when you take into
account all the chemicals, transporting, food import, waste export,
etc. of your industry.
Trapping, too, has environmental detriments. While you would like
think you're "helping" populations by extracting them unnecessarily
from their habitats, fur-trapping is a haphazard method of extracting
animal "resources". They can trap creatures that were unintended to be
trapped - including endangered species. Overall, hunting and trapping
practices tend to weaken animal populations as a whole, by targeting
"fitter" animals. Most recreational and commercial hunting practices
result in this as we have seen with many hunting based extinctions and species hunted to the point of having nonviable populations.
These are just the refutations of the claims your product is
environmentally friendly. It doesn't even address the inherent animal
cruelty of using animals unnecessarily to make money. I would be very
surprised if you actually published this. You claim that you don't
post hateful messages, but you posted a rant from an individual who
goes on [i]ad nauseum[/i] about people more compassionate than herself
in a derogatory tone. She also claims to be an animal lover. That's
like a pedophile claiming to love children. Both go on to exploit and
Although, if you have any interest in objective and open dialogue, I
suggest you do post my comment and/or send feedback. Not doing so only
proves my point that you aren't interested in absolute disclosure of
Thursday, January 28, 2010
that were submitted by Niagara Action for Animals promoting veganism.
They were not graphic in any way (unlike some other ads you put on
your buses). In fact, they are quite cutesy!
You put advertisements of a sexual nature, for other advocacy groups,
religious advertisements, etc. yet you disallow this one? Maybe the
message in the ads you banned is something you should think more about (i.e. cognitive dissonance). I'm guessing some of you own - or have
close relationships with people who own - animal exploiting
industries? I mean, good grief! Talk about absolute prejudice and
I'm a Brock student and if it wasn't mandatory to pay for the bus
pass, I would not pay to use your service based on your ignorance
displayed over this incident!