A thank you to the Carnival's previous host, The Savvy Vegetarian. Next week's Carnival will be hosted by The Evangelical Ecologist. If you want to post or host, check out the info post at TreeHugger.
Food for Thought
Janice Neitzel at triplepundit gives us the good news – Smithfield Foods, the U.S.’s largest pork producer is phasing out gestation crates. Very good news, ‘cuz these crates are horrific:
“Picture a sow in a steel bar crate with 3" of room on each side and about 9-12" from front to back to move. The animal can't turn around - she's always facing the same direction, with her feed and water at her face.” In the crate; for life. The lives of breeding sows are spent repeatedly getting pregnant through artificial insemination and giving birth”
Following in Smithfield’s footsteps is Maple Leaf Foods, Canada’s largest pork producer. Let’s hope that Smithfield et al will be working to implement Animal Welfare Institute (like Niman Ranch farmers do) Guidelines next.
Janice also asks, “Why is 10 years needed to phase out these crates and is this time frame acceptable to Smithfield’s customers who are eager to have these crates out of their supply chain?”
Sally Kneidel at Veggie Revolution informs us that “U.S. lobster and fishery fleets are currently a major threat to the [North Atlantic] right whale’s survival” in her post. Some simple changes on the part of the lobster industry, such as fewer traps and a shorter lobstering season would improve the whale’s chances of survival.
Sally reminds us that our food choices are “a powerful form of activism. When you choose fish and lobster, you're supporting the fleets that harvest these animals, with all of the unintended bycatch of other marine animals. Consider eating for environmental change. Consider choosing plant foods, or if you must eat animal products, choose products from pastured animals. If you must eat seafood, consult Oceans Alive's "Best Seafood Choices." We can also encourage our lawmakers to rein in the lobstering industry here in the U.S.
Jeremy Cherfas of Agricultural Biodiversity Weblog is concerned that the European Common Catalogue destroys biodiversity.
Heather at Foodfight has two posts about food production: Something’s Scary in the Dairy and Protesters Urge FDA to Withdraw Plan to Approve Cloned Food. Both posts deal with the FDA’s approval of cloned food for human consumption that won’t require labeling and that is scheduled to go into effect some time this year.
“Leading cloning scientists say that even seemingly healthy clones are likely to carry genetic abnormalities. These abnormalities could have food safety consequences, but almost no studies have looked at this problem. The National Academy of Sciences found that “There is currently no data to indicate whether abnormalities in patterns of gene expression persist in adult clones and are associated with food safety risks….” Ian Wilmut has pointed out that while such studies have not been done on adult cloned livestock, studies of cloned mice have shown that such abnormalities do persist..”
The FDA is accepting public comments on this issue until April 2nd. Utah readers of Jen’s Green Journal might want to also direct comment to former Utah Governor Michael Leavitt who is now the Secretary for Health and Human Services.
Don Bosch of The Evangelical Ecologist reviews the book, “Our Father’s World – Mobilizing the Church to Care for Creation.”
Oliver Moore at Olliesplace takes on Valentine’s Day and “commodity fetishism”.
John Feeney from Growth Is Madness tackles the idea of population and consumption – can one be separated from the other?
Barbara Feiner at Organic Authority reports that the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change reached the conclusion that Speedy, Decisive International Action Required on Climate Change.
“The findings, which governments have agreed upon, leave no doubt as to the dangers mankind is facing and must be acted upon without delay. Any notion that we do not know enough to move decisively against climate change has been clearly dispelled.” -Yvo de Boer, executive secretary of the UN Framework Convention on Climate Change
Greener News Room at Greener Magazine reports on paleoclimatologist Lonnie Thompson’s observations of Peru’s Qori Kalis Glacier in the post Peruvian glacier may vanish in five years . It’s seems that the ice there and in various parts of the world is telling us what we need to know about the existence of Global Warming, and as Thompson says, the glaciers “have no political agenda”.
Stephanie at Green SAHM is pretty psyched about Nanosolar technology, which may solve the problem of cost associated with solar currently.
Power to the People – stuff you can do
- Push for legislation. Phil for Humanity takes on the issue of Packaging Pollution. While not letting consumers or companies off the hook for the problem, he believes that we need the government to step in as “neither consumers nor businesses are motivated enough to reduce packaging pollution.” Our role as concerned citizens, he asserts, would be to press our leaders to take on the task of regulating product packaging.
- Have and Eco-friendly wedding. Mallory/MissMalaprop has some Eco-friendly wedding options, including a fiber-optic wedding gown.
- Calculate your carbon footprint, make your own biodiesel and learn how microbiology can reduce your carbon foot print in this podcast by A.J. Cann