Wednesday, August 19, 2009

Seasonably Green

August is slowly making its way towards September. Many of us are harvesting veggies and fruits from our gardens (despite the poor start to the season). Others are thinking about going back to school.

My vegetables started to show some life after weeks of rain and finally some warm weather. I came home from my vacation to string beans, a wonderful surprise! I am embarrased to say that when I planted the medley of beans in the spring (kidney, etc.), I had no idea how they would manifest themselves. I had no idea that string beans are the product of…you know… bean beans. Ruth in my office enlightened me that typicially one waits for the string beans to dry out before harvesting the beans inside them. News to me. Now I know. That’s why I like to plant new vegetables every year – to find out what they look like when they grow.

This year my friend Jane Miller will guide me in making pear jam and canning. Every year I’m trying to learn to do something new, and for good reason. I’m reading Jeff Rubin’s Why Your World Is About to Get a Whole Lot smaller. Everyone who is currently dependant on oil, such as all of us, should read it. After you do, you’ll want to learn how to can and do other self sustaining activities too.

Jeff Rubin is the former Chief Economist at CIBC World Markets, and certainly no chump. He’s been following the demise of the era of cheap oil for some time. Our world is about to profoundly change. Make sure you are not caught off guard (such as being the owner of an SUV or suburban home).

For those getting your mind around getting back to the routine of school, why not get off to a green start. Challenge yourself to go 100 percent green on the school supplies if you can.

How? Make sure you paper is all recycled. And use paper as little as possible. Companies such as Grassroots are selling biodegradable pens these days. You can also get pencils from sustainably harvested wood from companies such as Green Cricket. If you’re buying a computer, make sure it’s low on the toxic material side and high on the energy efficiency and longevity side. Avoid any supplies with PVC. Ride a bike or take transit to school. Get active in making your school more sustainable.

Some sites to help you go green:

Environmental Defence PVC-Free Back-to-School Guide

Green Cricket supplies


7 Portable Solar Laptop Chargers Worth Considering

In the News

Collapse of Salmon Stocks Endangers Pacific Fishery
The news from the US

Salmon crisis threatens ecology and culture
The news from Canada

Oil Lobby To Fund Campaign Against Obama's Climate Change Strategy

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