Monday, June 02, 2008

Carnival of the Green # 130!

I am delighted to be hosting Carnival of the Green today, a medley of all things green on the blogosphere over the past week. I signed up for this about a year ago, as it gets booked up months in advance, so it's quite exciting that my turn has finally come round! Thank you to Little Green Secrets who hosted last week's Carnival of the Green. Next week's carnival is at Blogfish.

This week is 'Recycle Week' here in the UK, and appropriately, there are a number of posts about recycling, reusing materials, and composting.
Its also World Environment Day on Wednesday, and the Environment Agency have launched a new campaign for people to do their bit (all well and good, but we also need the government to 'do its bit' to make it easier for us to 'do our bit'). Anyway, here goes:

Waste, Recycling and Composting
The Green Path Company has an article on recycling electronic waste. Ecojoe has a quick look at how much food the U.S. wastes, and what some companies are doing about it. On Fake Plastic Fish, following the discovery of a plastic eating microbe by a 16-year old, Beth ponders whether this lets us off the hook as a way of dealing with plastic bags or is simply an excuse to keep wasting resources. Meanwhile on Conserve Plastic Bags, Michelle is finding that her biodegradable dog muck bags are not biodegrading as she would like. Jzulueta on True Living Space writes about SAPSPA , an organisation in the Philppines that makes beautiful baskets etc from old newspapers and magazines. Over on Another Green World, Derek Wall shows how he has learnt to cut waste and improve his gardening by importing compost technics from Cuba which helped the country survive economic hardship and oil shortages in the 1990s.

Gardening and agriculture
Interested in growing your own food? Read about Sadie's unconventional efforts at soil preparation. Find out what she did....on Veggie Revolution this week. Continuing with the gardening theme, Tao of Change looks at the use of lawnmowers and ponders if there could be a better way. Tao discusses and shows photos of alternatives. On a similar theme, Greener Pastures asks 'Does your lawn really need to look like astroturf?' Happy to confirm that mine most certainly does not - elections and council commitments mean that my garden is definitely more wildlife garden than originally intended.

EatDrinkBetter looks at a unique urban agriculture program which helps refugee camp survivors to start their own urban agriculture businesses while bringing a community garden and better nutrition to a project housing area.
Meanwhile the Organic Makeup and Skin Care blog has a feature on biodynamic farming. What it is, who started it, certification it uses and even green brands (of skin care and makeup) who use biodynamic ingredients in their products.

And how about a way of dealing with all those slugs and snails that are thriving with the recent damp weather in London? The excellent Devonshire Road Nature Reserve blog has a suggestion.

Other bits and bobs
Green Building Elements has an article about a simple plumbing device that can help preheat hot water by recovering heat from water going down the drain. 80 to 90 percent of the energy used to heat water for the shower is lost down the drain, but apparently a DWHR unit can save as much as 25-30% of the energy used for water heating, and offers payback periods ranging from 3 to 7 years, depending on use patterns.

Alternative Energy blog asks (and tries to answer) "Why are oil prices so high", while
Money Blue Book argues that One Great Potential Benefit Of Higher Petrol Prices is Less Traffic. Hmm, not sure if the UK hauliers will buy that one . . .

Money Changes Things has an article on SEED, Oberlin's Student Experiment in Ecological Design, which was featured in the New York Times. This post includes comments on recalibrating the needle on consumption and entitlement.

Over on Beansprouts Blog, Melanie Rimmer argues that it's a mistake to think people acting individually can't bring about important change. Busting this myth, and some other misconceptions about people power. No Impact Man has a Climate Change Denial Industry Primer, while on La Marguerite, Marguerite Manteau-Rao uses the power of insight to expand the meaning of climate denial.

For the nostalgic, Natural Patriot has a post about Herbert S Zim, founder of the Golden Guides, pocket-size introductions for children to such subjects as fossils, zoology, microscopy, rocks and minerals, codes and secret writings, trees, wildflowers, dinosaurs, navigation and more. Don't think we had those this side of the pond, but hopefully it will ring a bell for Americans.

Political Animals
OK, being a Green Party councillor, I couldn't do this Carnival without at least a little plug for my colleagues, so here's a mini-roundup of what a few other elected Greens across the UK have been doing this week. York Green Party Councillor Andy D'Agorne writes about the possibility of a Transition Town group getting off the ground in York, as well as the joys and otherwise of Cycling in York. For those of you not in the know on Transition Towns see their wiki. I'm hoping something similar is going to be happening in Lewisham soon too - I know a few people in Sydenham and Brockley are discussing this.

Bristol councillor Charlie Bolton has had some success in getting a train service improved, but is still waiting for the confirmation that the popular Bristol-Bath cycle path is not going to be turned into a rapid transit route. Stroud councillor Philip is concerned about the validity of the feasibility study into the Severn Barrage and busy lobbying British Waterways and the Environment Agency over the state of Stroudwater.

Caroline Lucas, Green MEP for the South-East has recently started a blog about her day to day work, in addition to her Comment is Free blog. It doesn't seem to have a proper RSS feed from it yet, but hopefully will do soon.

Well that's it from Carnival of the Green for this week - it certainly makes a change from my usual posts about controlled parking zones, betting shop licences, uneven footpaths and nappucinos! Don't forget to visit Blogfish next week.


Julena said...

Great carnival! And thanks for including my post :)

Michelle said...

Yay! Thanks for hosting this week's carnival. It was fun reading your summary about what's going on in the green blogosphere!


Melanie Rimmer said...

It's a huge carnival and I know how much work it is to host it. Great job, and thanks for including my submission.

Unknown said...
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Derek Wall said...

thanks for the link...compost is political and vital, any way I am commenting on everyone's blogs with the following.

I have posted an appeal for Green Party members to support the Kingsnorth Climate camp, you can read it here

cheers Sue and Ute...will come and canvass for you some time