Showing posts with label Sustainability. Show all posts
Showing posts with label Sustainability. Show all posts

Monday, September 7, 2020

Meet the Canadian farmers fighting climate change

The Narwhal
Conservation and agriculture have often been at odds. But as Ottawa develops the first federal carbon offset standard, farming techniques that reduce greenhouse gas emissions are having a moment. Story here.

Here's another farmer who fits the category described, above.
Zack Koscielny is a fifth generation farmer located near Strathclair,
Manitoba implementing regenerative agriculture practices on his farm.
He has a degree in Agroecology and is a graduate of the Soil Health Academy.

Tuesday, April 7, 2020

Urgent changes needed to reduce environmental costs of ‘fast fashion’

Nature Reviews Earth & Environment.
Stefan Müller (climate stuff)
from Germany
Fundamental changes to the fashion business model, including an urgent transition away from ‘fast fashion’, are needed to improve the long-term sustainability of the fashion supply chain, argue Kirsi Niinimäki and colleagues in a Review published in Nature Reviews Earth & Environment.

The fashion industry is the second largest industrial polluter after aviation, and accounts for up to 10% of global pollution. However, the industry continues to grow, despite rising awareness of the environmental impacts, in part owing to the rise of fast fashion, which relies on cheap manufacturing, frequent consumption, and short-lived garment use.
The authors identify the environmental impacts of the fashion supply chain, from production to consumption, focusing on water use, chemical pollution, CO2 emissions and textile waste. For example, the industry produces over 92 million tonnes of waste and consumes 1.5 trillion tonnes of water per year, with developing countries often bearing the burden for developed countries. These impacts highlight the need for substantial changes in the industry, including deceleration of manufacturing and introduction of sustainable practices throughout the supply chain, the authors say. 
“Slow fashion is the future”, Niinimäki and co-authors conclude, but “we need a new system-wide understanding of how to transition towards this model, requiring creativity and collaboration between designers and manufacturers, various stakeholders, and end consumers.” A joined-up approach is required with the textile industry investing in cleaner technologies, the fashion industry developing new sustainable business models, and policy-makers modifying legislation. Consumers also have a crucial role and must change their consumption habits and be ready to pay higher prices that account for the environmental impact of fashion.

Thursday, May 25, 2017

Making the Switch: From fossil fuel subsidies to sustainable energy

IISD - International Institute for Sustainable Development

This report estimates fossil fuel subsidies to be around USD 425 billion. Such subsidies represent large lost opportunities for governments to invest in renewable energy, energy efficiency and sustainable development. Story here.

Thursday, January 28, 2016

Want to Find Out How to Invest in Sustainable Agriculture? Read On!

Earth Institute

Increased investment in agriculture is critical. In a world confronting anticipated increases in food demand arising from a growing world population and changing diets, as well as potential decreases in food supply due to climatic changes and water scarcity, agricultural investment will prove crucial to addressing food security needs in the future. Story here.                   

Two huge tractors and seeders,  probably worth about $2M, stand ready to begin work in Manitoba, Canada. PinP photo.

Monday, November 9, 2015

Manitoba Lakes Among ‘Most Poorly- Managed' in the World: Watchdog


Fish caught in Manitoba's three largest lakes have a "do not buy" rating from the sustainable fisheries organization SeaChoice. STORY HERE.

Monday, January 19, 2015

Radical Shift in Agriculture Critical to Making Future Food Systems Smarter, More Efficient

UN News
Climate change and increasing competition for natural resources have essentially rendered the agriculture model of the past 40 years unsustainable, the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) has stressed, calling for a ‘paradigm shift’ in food production. Story here.
Combining wheat in Manitoba. 
Larry Powell - PinP photo.

Saturday, December 27, 2014

Global Efforts Needed to Stop Deadly Banana Disease

UN News Centre

Without global efforts to respond to a fungal disease affecting banana production, the $36 billion global industry, which provides a source of income or food to some 400 million people around the world, is under threat, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO). Story here.

Thursday, May 15, 2014

Industrial Agriculture: Too Big to Succeed

An estimated one billion small farmers scratching out a living growing diverse crops and raising animals in developing countries represent the key to maintaining food production in the face of hotter temperatures and drought, especially in the tropical regions, says Sarah Elton, author of the book, “Consumed: Food for a Finite Planet.” Full story here.

Backyard chickens on a small, 

organic farm in Manitoba. PLT photo.

Thursday, February 13, 2014

Fossil Fuel Subsidies Dampen Shift Towards Renewables

Wind turbine in Saskatchewan, Canada. PLT photo.
Despite evolving public awareness and alarm over climate change, subsidies for the production and consumption of fossil fuels remain a stubborn impediment to shifting the world’s energy matrix towards renewable sources. Full story here.

Tuesday, August 13, 2013

Canadian Technology Could Help Save Civilization!


Reah Janise Kauffman and Julianne Simpson
Earth Policy Release
August 13, 2013

We love hearing about how our publications inspire others to take action and share their stories 

on our website. From the classroom to the political arena, people are spreading the word about 
Plan B and EPI’s work to create a roadmap to sustainability. 
Plan B 2.0In 2007, Dr. Bonnie Winslow-Garvin, a school psychologist and 
long-time fan of Lester’s work, gave her husband Michael Garvin a 
copy of Plan B 2.0. Garvin was so inspired by Lester’s call to action 
that he left his national security consulting work to focus on moving 
the world to a carbon-free energy economy. In 2009 they founded 
RENAIS, a renewable energy technology and financing consultancy 
specializing in wind power, in their home state of Iowa.
Garvin also wanted to act internationally. He decided to begin with 
the Caribbean, a region heavily dependent upon fossil fuel imports, 
where highly-polluting diesel generators dominate the electricity 
sector. With contacts in Curacao’s utilities and government, 
including former Prime Minister Gerrit Schotte, Garvin is encouraging 
retrofits of the country’s diesel-fueled vehicles and power stations to 
boost efficiency and cut pollution, using “hydrogen hybrid” technology 
from Canadian firm dynaCERT. Garvin, focusing his longer-term 
efforts on alternative energy production combined with battery 
storage, envisions Curacao becoming the first zero-carbon energy 
economy. More broadly, he plans to play a consulting role as the 15-nation Caribbean Community (CARICOM) implements its recently-agreed Regional Energy Policy, which emphasizes conservation, 
efficiency, and renewables as key for long-term energy security. 

Wednesday, February 13, 2013

Manitoba's Sustainable Pastures

Perennial polycultures and Managed Intensive Rotational Grazing (MIRG)
By Lydia Carpenter - Manitoba Eco-Journal

Permanent Pasture stands can be maintained by use of perennial polycultures that imitate the diversity of natural ecosystems. A diverse grouping of plants consisting of grasses, forbs, and woody species can make up a perenni- al polyculture and be used as pasture for grazing animals (ruminants), including cattle, sheep and goats. Animals on a perennial polyculture can contribute to nutrient cycling and an increase in soil organic matter. Established, maintained and healthy perennial pastures have also been shown to have a large capacity for carbon sequestration.
On our farm in Western Manitoba, we have counted over 30 different species of both native and non-native perennials and biennial forages, including nitrogen-fixing legumes such as alfalfa, pea-vine and various species of clover. These plants populate our permanent pasture that maintains a flock of sheep, a herd of goats and seasonal pro- duction of pasture-raised poultry. 
PLT photo.

Wednesday, June 1, 2011

Much More Policy Support and Investment Is Needed in Sustainable Smallholder Farming - & Quickly! - UN

Rome/Nairobi, 1 June 2011
United Nations officials called today for a "Green Revolution," a dramatic increase in support for sustainable agriculture....Details here.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

News Release: Manitoba Supports Sustainable Agriculture Practices says Struthers ...

Manitoba News Release
April 22, 2010
- - -
Over 180 Projects Approved
For 2009-10 and 2010-11

The Manitoba Sustainable Agriculture Practices Program (MSAPP) has completed its first intake of applications for beneficial management practice (BMP) incentive funding for the 2010-11 fiscal year, Agriculture, Food and Rural Initiatives Minister Stan Struthers announced today.

"The MSAPP is a incentive-based program announced by the province in 2008 to encourage producers to adopt and implement BMPs to help reduce greenhouse-gas (GHG) emissions that contribute to climate change," said Struthers "The MSAPP is part of our commitment to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 2012 to help achieve its climate change objectives and transition to a low-carbon and green economy."

To date, over 180 sustainable agriculture projects have been
approved with Manitoba producers eligible for payments of over $2 million. Many different projects from every region of the province have been approved including funding for reduced GHG emissions from manure storage, reduced tillage, manure land application, perennial cover for sensitive land, spring fertilizer application, and improved pasture and forage quality.

When complete, it is expected these new projects will provide environmental benefits for both the individual participant and for all Manitobans. The investment in these projects will continue to provide improvements in air, water and soil quality by reducing nutrient and pathogen loss to the environment, preventing soil erosion and improving biodiversity and wildlife habitats, said Struthers.

The total GHG reductions from the actions taken so far by Manitoba producers are estimated at 82,000 tonnes of carbon dioxide, equivalent over the life of the program to approximately 59,000 tonnes in 2009-10 and 23,250 tonnes in 2010-11. GHG emissions from agriculture soils fluctuate from year to year because the types of crops grown affect the amount of fertilizer applied as well as the amount of crop residue returned to the soil after harvest.

For many years, prior to the introduction of the MSAPP, Manitoba producers adopted and implemented BMPs. These included but were not limited to:
- conservation tillage;
- cover crops;
- organic farming;
- effective nutrient management;
- manure management, handling and proper storage; and
- shelterbelts and riparian buffers

The MSAPP has seen an overwhelming response from agricultural producers in Manitoba, said Struthers, adding the program is cost shared with producers and the positive response demonstrates the value Manitoba producers place in making their operations more environmentally sustainable. The MSAPP will run until March 31, 2012.

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Massive B.C. coal mines are about to get a new owner. Why some are worried about Glencore’s record

THE NARWHAL Coal mine at Tumbler Ridge, B.C.  Jeffrey Wynne ,      If the sale goes through, the company will inherit a contamination proble...