Monday, March 31, 2008

Time to step it up

As far as the Riot for Austerity goes, I've been kind of lax in the following areas:
Consumer Goods and

Basically I've been feeling too lazy to keep track of it all. But what I'm finding is that if I'm not keeping track of it, I'm not so good about keeping to the rules.

Plus a couple of articles shook me out of my inertia today.

First was Greenpa's post today which among other things included a link to a NY Times article on food shortages/price increases around the world. It talks specifically about the rice situation and it seems riots for rice can now be added to the riots already happening for soybeans and corn.
The situation is pretty bad and it reminded me how important it is to buy food from local farmers.

Second was a note from a friend that pointed me to this Time article. It's about biofuels (aka the biggest item on the green washing agenda). Deforestation is set to double in Brazil (the Amazon) this year. All to make way for biofuel production . I feel a bit teary about it to be honest.

Third was 'Dispatches' tonight on CBC radio - 'the nuclear renaissance'. Was a fairly well balanced program. I recommend listening to it. Personally I'm against nuclear. I know its 'clean' but is just too plain dangerous for my liking. Especially on a huge scale (as in if most our energy were to come from nuclear - which is where we seem to be going). I think there are better options - George Monbiot in his book Heat has some good suggestions. But ultimately if we all used a hell of a lot less electricity (which IS possible and really doesn't impact life that much), we wouldn't even need to have this debate.

Anyway, all that to say, I'm reminded why what I'm doing what I'm doing. And so I'm pledging to do the following here on Experiments:

Sunday's will become Consumer Goods Day - I'll blog about everything I bought that week that wasn't food or a service. Hopefully it will be a short list.

Wednesdays will become Gasoline Wednesdays - I'll blog about how many km I travelled by car and by public transport and under my own steam. And I'll post how I'm doing percentage wise for the riot.

Fridays will become - Foody Fridays - I'll blog about my % of local food consumed that week and also about my 'best' and 'worst' meal.

I hope can stick to this. Feel free to give me a nudge if I forget.

Oh and my favourite quotes from the Time article on biofuels:
"There was just one flaw in the calculation: the studies all credited fuel crops for sequestering carbon, but no one checked whether the crops would ultimately replace vegetation and soils that sucked up even more carbon. It was as if the science world assumed biofuels would be grown in parking lots. The deforestation of Indonesia has shown that's not the case. It turns out that the carbon lost when wilderness is razed overwhelms the gains from cleaner-burning fuels."

"The lesson behind the math is that on a warming planet, land is an incredibly precious commodity, and every acre used to generate fuel is an acre that can't be used to generate the food needed to feed us or the carbon storage needed to save us."

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