Wednesday, August 3, 2016
Did you know there are 17 Sustainability Goals & What Action The Individual Can Take On Them?
a) Write to the government and insist that the banks and NAMA are brought to account. Demonstrate in solidarity with those already homeless.
b) Write to the Department of Social Services and ask for fairer benefits for those once self employed, now living in poverty.
c) Offer work to those you know who are broke in exchange for meals, education, accommodation.
a) Refine your food purchases and waste nothing – in France it is now illegal for supermarkets to throw away food, they must pass it on to those in need. We are the micro version of that macro solution too.
b) Give up the cheap choices with the realization that someone somewhere is being exploited at full cost – be it their fresh water, contamination by chemicals or labour.
c) Buy local and Seasonal food but sponsor a person or project in a developing country to do the same.
a) Drink plenty of water to support every function of your body – refuse fluoridation, pesticide and other agriculture contamination and fracking of fresh water resources.
b) Love each other and your pets
c) Ease your conscience - by dispelling, on a daily basis, any illusions, beliefs and unhelpful stories you find that you’ve been telling yourself and being kind to others.
a) Whether it’s for your children or oneself, make education a creative, empowering exercise.
b) Challenge people to care, consider, articulate, communicate and innovate…not compete.
c) Life skills, values and objectivity are a foundation to be taught alongside all technical subjects. This is the deal in Belgium already, every term students must do a module of philosophy…so no subject becomes removed from reality.
a) Women should get the same wages for doing the same work. Kind of obvious but not yet implemented in any country.
b) Men are going to have to stop dominating women – the role is to shift from using to protecting. In fact, both genders need to realize that all life in all its forms needs protecting rather than using.
c) Empowerment of women will consist in their increasing their inner authority and independence. They must practice self-referencing and immunity to what others think of them.
a) Appreciate fresh water availability, to a new level. Take one look on Google Images of Drought - the massively cracked and cratered landscape that much of the world has become. People walking for miles to find water, dirty water. Picture making that decision whether to drink it yourself, or pour it on to a seedling that might or might not grow into some nourishment.
b) Don’t eat meat or dairy. 15,000 litres of fresh water to produce 1kg of meat but only 200 litres to grow 1kg vegetables. Dairy is incredibly heavy on water too. Plus the contamination of land and sea from untreated waste. Off it goes into the waterways, the muck of thousands of poor confined pigs and cows.
c) Stop spraying weed killers etc in your garden and flushing bleach into your septic tank as it all ends up in the water course, killing the wildlife. Contraceptive hormones are so prevalent in people’s wee that they’re present in drinking water too, as are fluoride, chlorine, Round Up etc etc.
Staying with the ESB grid as is, is basically a perpetuation of the oblivious use of fossil fuels.
a) Help the inordinate amount of elderly people sitting around in cold rooms by insisting on affordable and clean energy, while you’re fit enough to make a stand.
b) Support the ‘Shell To Sea’ movement that opposes the complete sale of Irish gas resources with no savings to customers, no tax contribution to support other services and infrastructure and no carbon tax, no responsibility to protect the public water source and their free use of millions of litres of fresh water for the fracking and gas cleaning processes, while the lowest income people having their water charges taken from source (that source being their benefits!)
c) Clean energy would include tidal turbines and solar panels and many other new technologies for producing energy. If you’re building a house from scratch or can wangle a contribution from Sustainable Authority Ireland, put on solar voltaic panels. Also turn out lights and pilot lights and explore insulation and stoves – increase your level of independence from the grid. If you’re a little bit handy, attend one of the many build your own generator courses being run.
Try and make our whole use of energy more conscious.
a) If you can’t find ‘decent work’, start your own project. Indecent work includes abbatoirs, pharmaceutical companies, food production facilities, hotels, computer companies. The reason these are not decent is that it takes oceans of chemicals and animals and ignorance to scale up these things. If you work there, you have no say in the process. Pharmaceutical companies also have dubious agendas. We know from the level of toxicity of chemotherapies (The cancer might not kill you but the chemotherapy definitely will) and the amount of animal experiments justified and the fact that these companies have Mission Statements that read something like ‘we intend to have every citizen on an average of 4 prescribed drugs from the cradle to the grave’. Try not to be a part of industries you don’t agree with or that are damaging.
b) Instead of economic growth, let’s have food security and a circular economy. c) We can all grow something or provide a service and enrich the quality of life for entire communities with immediate effect. This doesn’t require legislation. Just do it. A further plus is that when activities and produce are exchanged rather than money, people aren’t fleeced by the tax man. (Quite a good analogy, fleecing, when you picture an innocent sheep held to the ground and their wool sheered off, usually nicking the skin as well)
a) This is where we each get to use our imaginations…teaching, making, recycling, restoring, sharing, re-visioning, growing, perfecting, enjoying once again and valuing.
b) If we don’t want food saturated in pesticides and herbicides, we need to teach organic growing systems, as is done through the Community Garden Networks. This is also a model for groups to collectively design, develop and manage gardens. We can’t expect farmers to handle acres of crops without chemicals and without manpower either. Offer your help, even better as a family. Feed your animals organic food so that their muck can provide rich natural fertilizer to the soil.
c) We know that infrastructure now just means ‘jobs for the boys’. The enterprise board just pay money to their ‘mentors’ and no actual projects; the council’s just give massive public contracts and amounts of money to private companies to deal with their problems for them – like respite homes and stray animals and all the social services that need expertise and experience. So we must start our own enterprises, with integrity and low overheads and build them with no help…but yet no hindrance either…from the current structures.
Inequalities include differences in income and accommodation and access to education and care. We tend to think that the richest people and companies should be made to share their disproportionate winnings. However, this is a short neural pathway to feeling even less equal…as we can’t force the hand of the government to tax appropriately or inspire any of the rich people to share their money.
Instead, we should
a) Develop solidarity with everyone we meet.
b) Refuse the notion of inequality by flagging it up whenever we see it.
c) Never succumb to feeling less than anyone else.
a) Use hydroponics, as they do in O’Hare Airport and other massively built up areas, to grow crops vertically and in protected environments.
Involve staff in food production. The same in your own window boxes and gardens first. Get some oxygen-producing foliage on the go and herbs and vegetables.
b) There is a real opportunity for borrowed heat from neighbouring apartments in town and city centres, so one can mind one’s own electricity use.
c) Get to know your neighbours. The least sustainable thing about city life is the fear everyone has of everyone else. Find a way to feel safe and that you are a welcome part of a community. Then no one will want to beat you up and or nick all your stuff when you’re out and about.
a) How much do we eat? Is it what we want or what we need and why.
b) Avoiding mass produced food with chemicals.
c) They say consumers are the most powerful activists. Do an inventory of your cupboards and consider preservatives, e-numbers, animal products, animal testing and the supply chain – eg palm oil, killing orangutan habitat, people working for no wages to extract it and its insertion into a multitude of foods unnecessarily. Therefore, withdraw your financial support, don’t buy the things.
a) Don’t waste water
b) Stop animal agriculture
c) Don’t throw away anything that can be composted.
d) Don’t make anything that is not biodegradable
a) Campaign to make Irish Waters a no-take zone, get the super trawlers banned from everywhere, if possible and to stop the seismic blasting disorientating an disturbing all remaining sea life.
b) Individually, don’t eat fish
c) Don’t litter and think about packaging in general. There are miles of plastic waste in the sea that we can stop adding to.
d) Donate some time or money to help clear it up.
a) Join a Community Garden or food scheme
b) Collaborate with your neighbours; car pool, share internet and bins use, mend things for each other and keep each other company.
c) Buy locally grown food so farmers don’t go bankrupt competing with imports.
Contradiction in terms?
a) Cultivate peace inside and hold a vision of justice
b)But don’t go looking for it, as the systems are corrupt and you will be rendered further demoralized.
c) Funding alone decides legal, business, government and council matters so that is why we need to build new structures and partnerships, on more qualitative and sustainable grounds.
Food, energy, care, technical support, maintenance, innovation, education. Whatever you need, go find the person who knows about it and see if, by great chance, you have something they need too.