Sunday, December 7, 2014

US & Russia: Can't We All Be Friends?



Photo courtesy of Jesslee Cuizon.

Ron Paul writes how US Congress declared war on Russia. Really?

Are they so out of their imagination they had to go back to ex enemy #1: Russia?

Is this retaliation for Russia having banned GMO (genetically modified food)?
And an attempt to get US fracking oil and gas to EU markets? US, play fair!
And have the war industry profiteer?

US has a history of starting wars and creating 'enemies'...

US, don't think you can help start another war in Europe without anyone noticing! We are watching. And there are many of us!

So now what, EU would have to declare 'war on Russia' too??
ARE WE SURE THIS IS A GOOD IDEA??

This is getting boring. Or rather, outrageous. Like 3rd grade school politics: if you'll be friends with her, I won't be friends with you! Politicians, grow up!

Can't we all be friends?

So the whole thing in Ukraine was cooked up by USA and EU meddling and interfering in overthrow of government. True, the government there was corrupt and bad. Golden toilets? Why? /exasperation!/ So maybe the overthrow was a good thing, at least partly. (Mr Putin, are you listening?)

But did really Nazis take over? Surely, new elections could help?

The situation in Ukraine needs to be resolved with words and politics - diplomacy, not weapons!

Russian-speaking people need to be able to preserve their culture and heritage too! (And some degree of autonomy.)

Ukrainian people need understanding too, some of them have suffered under Russian rule - and suffering can bring hate. But is hate the solution? Breathe.

Isn't it better to focus on creating a FAIR and GOOD country to live in for EVERYONE?

Plus, beware of genetically modified organisms coming to your fields, beautiful Ukraine!

And to the international community: why would US and BRIC countries need to be 'enemies' if they can be good partners in creating worldwide wellbeing, stability and GREEN creativity and cooperation?

Wars are NOT eco-friendly, or 'zero waste'. Some people have seen wars as 'profiteering' in the past, but with limited resources and ever-so-more-dangerous weapons, would we be able to rebuild all this? In wars, health and mental health of people on both sides suffer...

We need to WORK TOGETHER on challenges of the future and today... Like how to create less waste and better resource efficiency, while still maintaining good profits for good businesses, and a more fair world, how to promote sustainable eco-friendly world tourism... We have a LOT of WORK to do, GREEN JOBS are extremely important.
So is FRIENDSHIP. INTERNATIONAL FRIENDSHIP.

Is it possible? I HOPE SO!

Tuesday, December 2, 2014

Monsanto Signs For Circular Economy!


Just when I thought I've seen it all, the world continues to suprise me! LOL!

As I was thinking, where are all the GOOD businesses that WANT to be eco-friendly and more sustainable and make less waste, EEB (who is celebrating 40th birthday - Happy Birthday!) published an open letter by Peter Bakker from World Business Council for Sustainable Development to EU Commissioner Karmenu Vella and a list of businesses FOR Circular Economy!

Of course I was thrilled!! Then, I went to check who's IN!

And almost fainted. Monsanto, Unilever, Syngenta - who are pro GMO (genetically modified organisms) are on the list of 'business solutions for a sustainable world'!

Then you have Chevron, DuPont, BASF, DuPont, Dow and several other chemical companies. The notorious Lafarge (notorious in our country, Slovenia! for burning waste in a cement kiln, and other things - though some locals like it for bringing jobs to the area), Veolia who is partly good (sponsoring excellent series on rethinking resources over at the Guardian!) and partly pro incinerators as well (though they seem open to other uses of their 'exotics' and other 'excess' which is a trendy word for waste that Looptworks is using smartly), and sued Egypt for raising minimum wage. Whaat?

With companies like these FOR Circular Economy package, will it be any good? Good question.
As written in the previous post, Zero Waste Europe thinks the package of legislation would need to be improved to ban incinerators as well.

Locally - well, nationally the debate 'zero waste' or 'incinerators' has been raised again. More opportunity for campaigning and raising awareness!
Of course eyes will need to be on the watch on this all - whether the new legislation gets accepted or not!

There are some GOOD companies on the list also, like IKEA or Samsung, Nissan (that I at least don't know anything bad about - yet:)... McKinsey, champions of circular economy...

But the really GOOD THING about this is that BIG businesses at a bigger level are thinking about this, BIG TIME. Even Coca Cola and Pepsi. Nestlé, infamous as it may be?

And when some consumers like my sister (who still loves Coca Cola) can't seem to be bothered with more messages about waste and eco-friendliness beyond the general recycling, it does seem up to the businesses and legislation to provide more eco-friendly solutions. The individual consumer can only do so much.

So, I say YAY for such a big number of businesses for Circular Economy! (Even though I'm still flabbergasted by some of the names!) And I hope that they will, well, go greener overall? ;) (Monsanto, Syngenta and Unilever, that means no GMOs too, do you hear me? ;)

What do y'all think? ;)

Monday, December 1, 2014

Like Little Red Riding Hood in the Woods! :)


Woo, I'm being read by politicians and businesspeople and like CEOs of eco firms - at least on Twitter and Facebook! :) While they haven't 'liked' or commented/interacted much, at least they seem interested!

I do wonder if there are healthy sane ethical businesses who are anti secret 'free trade' deals TTIP, CETA and TISA too! (I bet there are, but where to find them?)

I'd like to help promote circular economy even though the package by the EU Commission still needs to be improved!

And if it does get approved or not, the idea is to get more businesses interested.

As for TTIP and other secret trade deals, this is just a HUGE lesson on what politics really is: decision-making! Teaching us all that we mustn't allow 'them' to do decision-making instead of us!
It may not be easy to stay connected to things on local, national and international level at the same time. You need to have people you can trust at all levels, so you can rely on some of what they say.

And well... you just have to be BRAVE!! haha (I still seem to be a bit clueless about how to go about it all, but it's definitely been interesting!:)

Sunday, November 23, 2014

Voldemort's Minions - What Has Been Really Going On?


There has been some development. Apparently the lobbying group BusinessEurope and its friends have been behind TTIP and in opposition to Circular Economy and Clean Air packages and some other legislation for gender equality and for pregnant women.

It makes one wonder WHY: TTIP is said to bring 1.300.000 jobs or so, the Circular Economy 2 million! But surely employers (BusinessEurope seems mainly to be an association of employers' associations) don't just look for new jobs to be created! The Circular Economy could bring BIG savings - previous European Commission has predicted up to EUR 600 billion net savings for EU businesses as well.

EEB has been fighting for the Circular Economy package, they're great, but they will probably need help. From all of us.
The Guardian (UK newspaper) is pro-circular economy too, some good articles and interviews etc. "If we don't reuse things, we are going to start running out of materials." Can material innovation save the world?" (I just worry that one of their sponsors, Veolia, is for incineration of waste also, though they seem open to people using up waste - or 'excess' creatively.) In the debate, they touch upon resistance of companies to take up new waste targets as well, as they have sales targets and other things on their plates. But isn't that just, um, being a bit shortsighted? Where are businesses with longterm VISION?

Some businesses have recognized the importance of Circular Economy, namely plastics recyclers and such.

Luckily, some smart businesses want to go green! Unilever confirms it has quit BusinessEurope lobby group. We hope for many more!

Good news: there will be WAY less plastic bags in EU in the future - we still need to fight against the evil oxo-degradable bags that collapse into thousands of mini plastic pieces. And we have until December 16th to change the opinion of the new EU Commission about Circular Economy!

What you can do: write to your country's association of employers that is part of BusinessEurope and ask them to appeal to BusinessEurope to change its ways! Specifically, to stop opposing Circular Economy and Clean Air and other good legislation proposals. Or to withdraw its membership out of it. Or to businesses that are members directly. Blog, tweet, retweet &Facebook &'like' messages about the importance of Circular Economy! We are many! Our voices CAN make a difference!

Do you have any other ideas on what could be done? :)

Monday, November 17, 2014

Has Voldemort Taken Over?


So many things are happening I don't know what to blog about first!

Ditching the EU-wide plastic bag ban because of ex Tory and a present Tory linked in what seems to be a corruption scandal seemed bad enough! The oxo-degradable bags which collapse into microplastics that never go away seem just evil!

UK, Croatia, Greece, Romania and Poland (and Denmark, Bulgaria and Slovakia?) seem to be blocking the scheme that could reduce plastic bag waste for 80% and bring savings of 740 million Euro A YEAR throughout Europe - money which could be directed into green jobs, to good environmental NGOs, charities, the disabled, for good projects!

But news on the Zero Waste Europe website seem gloom!

Does the new EU Commission under Juncker really want to destroy all good that the previous Commission has put together? CLEAN AIR and CIRCULAR ECONOMY are important! We need to be LOUD about it! On Twitter, Facebook, everywhere!!

Karmenu Vella, EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries, seems optimistic in hist first blog post - and I'm sooo glad that he invites people to European Week for Waste Reduction, for which he accepted a patronage together with his friend and colleague Vytenis Andriukaitis.
EWWR starts on 22 November, more info on their website.

But will he be able to stop the tide of bad decisions which would leave Europe behind in the 'Middle Ages' when it comes to resource efficiency and HEALTHY ENVIRONMENT?

Does Europe really wish to compete with China in deregulation and pollution?? In some cities in China, you can't see the blue sky because of all the smog!

European Commission welcomes the results of the Brisbane G20 summit saying 'The agreed results will help to put the global economy on a sustainable growth path' - are they serious about sustainability, or only focused on the 'growth' part? Sadly, they also still seem to be stuck on the evil TTIP plan too!!

On a happier note, Anonymous seized up Twitter accounts of Ku Klux Klans! I wish they could seize up all evil wrongdoings in the world! (And track out finances of ISIS and Boko Haram and give them to Oxfam instead!) It is sad that sometimes this kind of voice is the only one to be heard.

For those of us without mad hacking skills: @Surfrider Europe seems to be loudest in the rally to Ban the Bags, so join them! And EEB fights against air pollution and waste! Let's be LOUD about what we want: clean air and circular economy=less waste!

Tuesday, May 27, 2014

How Free Is Free Trade?


What is 'free' trade? And is trade ever really 'free'?
Ideally, it would mean a big market where everyone can happily trade. And this is a wet dream for MANY corporations.

North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) was fast-tracked and promised 200.000 jobs - in fact 680.000 jobs closed and moved to cheaper Mexico. Mexican farmers and the environment also suffered, and local communities or countries were sued for eg banning a hazardous waste facility!
Some call TPP 'rigged' trade not 'free' trade - more about TPP and how it would like to 'rig' countries worldwide for the benefit of corporations.
The conflict between workers’ rights and “free trade” and more about TTIP.

What are our alternatives?
Alter-globalization and Alternative Trade Mandate that would respect environmental, human rights and labour standards.

Tuesday, May 20, 2014

Bye ACTA, Bye TPP!!

Not so long ago we said goodbye to notorious ACTA, an international treaty about intellectual property rights between EU, US and a bunch of other countries worldwide.

Now, like Voldemort's final sighs the efforts of illustrious Dark forces are back: they wish to sneak in a bunch of other surprise tactics - and genetically modified organisms (GMOs)! They call it TPP - Trans-Pacific Partnership or specifically with EU Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP)!
According to GMO Free USA, corporations could even SUE countries (!) for banning GMO! Labelling would be impossible (?!) and food safety would be threatened!

DREAM ON, MONSANTO!

My Dad thinks they are devil-worshippers. (I wouldn't be surprised!)

Pirate parties worldwide are rebelling, as well as anti-GMO activists!


The problem is, AGAIN negotiations have been made behind closed doors.
And recently, assisstants of Green MEPs (Members of European Parliament) have been arrested along with other peaceful protesters in Brussels, Europe - for protesting against TPP! On what grounds and why? No idea! (I don't understand that much French!)

If this indeed is a sign of how a democratic Europe is planning to work, then we're in deep trouble!

Well, I still believe in EUROPE and in the WORLD, in peaceful and democratic co-operation!
With transparency and what PEOPLE have to say, not just corporations and well-paid lobbyists! (and under-the-table money!)
See a funny video about TTIP or check out the EU Greens' website: ttip2014.eu!

So I'm going to VOTE on May 25th - elections for EU Parliament! And I'm going to help harass inspire MEPs and others to VOTE smartly!

We ALL need to WATCH what they're DOING and give a STRONG opinion about it!

NO to ACTA, NO to TPP!! (And NO to GMOs!!)

Apparently Russia was SMART and BANNED GMOs?? & made importing them a terrorist activity! Way to go, Russia!
(I may disagree with them on some other things, but here they are truly trail-blazers of wonderfulness!!)

Also, global gmo-free-coalition brings together 4,5 million people to fight biotech industry propaganda - find them at gmofreeglobal.org! And YOU? Are you going to VOTE - &/OR PROTEST about TTP? ;)

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Yummy Yogurt, Zero-Waste Style!

We finally found zero waste yogurt!

I was exasperating over the tiny flimsy plastic (No.6 problematic plastic!) cups coupled with cardboard (to burn better?) which my mum kept buying yogurt in at the local store (and sis kept eating!) I like yogurt too, so at times I ate it, with pangs of guilt - no more!

This yogurt is seriously good, locally grown, hand-delivered once a week in pretty (and healthier!) reusable glass containers stored in a reusable cardboard box with some (reusable) newspaper and cardboard as 'buffer'. The cows eat only homegrown feed, according to the farmer, and they don't spray with iffy toxics. Also, we are helping local farmers!

Dad says, 'Why don't you make it?' - the yogurt, but we couldn't produce such consistent resuls, there is some hassle, and sis didn't eat my results last time we tried it. (She's a gourmet eater.) Also, this yogurt lasts for two weeks while ours didn't last so long. It costs a little bit more than store-bought yogurt, but I think it's worth it! We'll make our 'sour milk' in the summer when good results are more easily obtained.


As for the plastic yogurt cups, mum used them for planting tomatoes and peppers. (She 'lost' the previous ones, then found them only at the end of her planting.) We're growing pink tomatoes and some other exotic ones this year, mum's experimenting.

Ever since I heard that plastic yogurt cups do NOT get recycled locally, but burnt at the incinerator, I had a love-and-hate relationship with yogurt. It's good and more easily digested than milk (if you eat dairy products, which I do again, for calcium - I got cramps from calcium supplements! and my scoliosis worsened when I didn't eat dairy - and okay, stayed behind computer too much). So when I heard about this from a friend, I was very happy!

How about you? Any recent zero-waste news? Did you manage to source something good and yummy? How do you eat yogurt or similar non-dairy products? (Alternative rice or almond milks seem to all come in iffy tetrapaks which I tend to stay away from?)