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It is that time of year again when the Monarch Butterfly invades the warm climate of Mexico finishing its amazing migration route. Monarchs are one of the only insects that travel such great distances, some fly over 3,000 miles! Yet, what makes the journey even more unique is the fact a single insect does not make the round-trip in one year. It is typically the original Monarch's grandchildren that finish the migration. Sadly, due to habitat loss, Monarch populations are becoming less and less. Check out MonarchWatch.org to find out how you can help these truly amazing creatures. In the mean time, check out this video from one of the Monarch sanctuaries in Mexico, Santuario de la Mariposa Monarca el Rosario, and be sure to add this to your bucket list of adventures!
In Before the Flood, DiCaprio documented his travels to remote places of the earth to interview leading climate change scientists and world leaders to discuss the issue and possible alternatives to fossil fuel consumption, one of the leading causes of CO2 emissions into the environment. Please take the time to view the film and then ask yourself what lifestyle changes you can make to help our planet. Remember, we only have one.
Did you know that in the U.S. alone, nearly 500 MILLION straws are used and discarded EVERY DAY! Straws are typically made from plastic (a fossil fuel product) and will not biodegrade in the environment, meaning straws are here forever. Go Eclectic World has created a new initiative to lessen the unnecessary straw waste by encouraging consumers to refuse to use a straw and for businesses/restaurants to only offer a straw if asked. By doing so, we can help lessen the amount of plastic trash entering our natural environment and affecting those creatures who cannot avoid it. Please take a moment to watch this video about a sea turtle's plight with a straw and then Pledge to Free Your Lips and go Straw-Less. (***warning: video is graphic to some***)
As the election rapidly approaches, make sure you let the candidates know how you feel about the environment. Share the #climatevoter on your profile or in your news feed. We need to vote for candidates who are working toward a more sustainable future that includes clean energy, more stringent rules on pollution, and putting an end to the degradation and removal of natural green spaces for commercial or industry needs. Without a healthy planet, there will be no future.
(Photo Courtesy of the Sierra Club)
Ever heard of palm oil? Go to your kitchen or bathroom and grab a food or personal hygiene product and check the label. I guarantee you will find it or a derivative listed in the active ingredients. It is a cheap, widely used edible vegetable oil found in chips, cookies, shampoos, make-up, and a thousand other things. Most palm oil comes from Asia and Africa and due to unsustainable farming practices, has led to the deforestation and destruction of the environment; most notably in Borneo and Sumatra. In the past 20 years, nearly 90% of the forests have been wiped out in these areas, causing the orangutans that inhabit it to now be classified as critically endangered. Without sustainable practices in place, the orangutan will be eliminated from the wild within the next decade.
What can you do? Start by checking the labels of the products you buy and only purchasing items that have no palm oil or use sustainable sourced oil (they will be labeled as RSPO). Boycott companies such as Starbucks and PepsiCo who continue to exploit the orangutan habitats for profit. A coffee or soda is not worth the destruction of our planet and the extinction of a species.
For more information, please visit saynotopalmoil.com. You can also find a list of products and alternative names for palm oil here.
Discovery Channel's annual Shark Week is upon us; a week where we celebrate these glorious creatures of the sea. But our interest should extend beyond just one week a year. These top apex predators are in danger of disappearing, which will spell disaster for our ocean ecosystems. Nearly 73 million sharks are killed EVERY YEAR, largely in part to the shark fin trade. Recently, legislation was introduced (Shark Fin Trade Elimination Act of 2016) that will put a permanent ban on any trade of shark fin or related products in the United States. While the U.S. already has a ban in place to stop the practice of shark finning in U.S. waters, the fins themselves can still be bought and sold within our borders from other countries. This bill aims to stop that and hopefully motivate other countries to follow suit. If you are unfamiliar with the cruel practice of shark finning, please click here to view undercover video from StopSharkFinning.net (Be advised..they are very graphic). For more information and to find other ways to help, please visit our friends at Oceana.org.
Time to celebrate this gorgeous planet by wasting less, recycling and reusing more, and generally appreciating our home before it's too late.
As the last of the winter chill begins to dissipate and a spring warming is upon us, it's time to start planning those outdoor activities. And nothing is better to shake those cold weather cobwebs off than a morel mushroom hunt! Morels are tasty, abundant, and easy to find. Typically showing in late March through May, morels can be found along the edges of forested areas, near dead or dying trees (particularly ash, aspen, elm, and oak trees) and even in well-drained sandy soils near creek bottoms. If the temps are still cool, look for morels on open, south-facing slopes. Later in the season you will be able to spot them deeper into the woods on north-facing slopes.
March 22nd is World Water Day--created to bring awareness to the issues facing our waterways; from pollution, climate change, and drought to the millions of people who lack the basic necessity of clean water. Please take some time today to check out UNWater.org and learn more about World Water Day and what you can do to help.