Archive for the 'Environment' Category

Fracking for gas is highly controversial

 

The fracking issue has united farmers, businesses, craft producers and ordinary citizens across the countryside over the last few months.

Here’s an interesting article from the associate editor and chief economics commentator at the Financial Times, Martin Wolf.

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Sole Rebels – How Ethiopian fashion entrepreneurs recycled truck tyres into sought-after shoes

Putting your best foot forward - 'Turning recycled truck tyres into fashionable shoes'

A young woman entrepreneur has combined the internet’s  selling power with nimble business practices.  By adding funky cotton and leather uppers to recycled tyre soles, Bethlehem Tilahun Alemu has sold  thousands of pairs of handmade flip-flops, boat shoes, loafers and Converse-style trainers.


Sole Rebels now sells to Amazon and top shoe outlets worldwide, employs 75 full time and 120 part time and will have a turnover in excess of €500,000 this year.

Read her story here and here

Land and People: Agro-colonialism or much needed development

Investment firms possibly prompted by the 2007 – 8 global food crisis and rich countries lacking in sufficient supplies of some staple food crops have been moving into Africa and either land leasing or buying up vast swathes of land to produce arable crops.

But is this a much needed development or a form of agro- colonialism?

Here’s a report from Mary Fitzgerald of the Irish Times.

You might also like to check out ‘Is there such a thing as Agro-imperialism? by Andrew Rice of the New York Times.

The End of the Line

The End of the Line is a powerful film about one of the world’s most disturbing problems – over-fishing.

Advances in fishing technology mean whole species of wild fish are under threat and the most important stocks we eat are predicted to be in a state of collapse by 2050.

The film points the finger at those most to blame, including celebrity chefs, and shows what we can do about it. This is not just a film, it is also a campaign – for sustainable consumption of fish, for marine protected areas to allow the sea to recover, and for a new ethic of responsible fishing.

Why is no one brave enough to stand up to the fishing industry?

George Monbiot wrote this piece in June (it was too good not to share) about the failure of politicians to stop some of the more destructive practices of the fishing industry just across the water from us in Cardigan Bay, a special area of conservation.

Here’s an extract:  The bay is strictly protected. It can’t be damaged, and the dolphins and other rare marine life can’t be disturbed. So why the heck has a fleet of scallop dredgers been allowed to rip it to pieces?

Jumping Dolphins


Waste – Uncovering the Global Food Scandal

Waste:  Uncovering the Global Food Scandal by Tristram Stuart,  Penguin €11

Are we profligate with food?   Tristram Stuart thinks so.  In Britain and the US average food costs are approximately 10% of a household’s disposable income.  In Pakistan it is 75%.

A result of this wastefulness, according to Stuart, is that the environmental impact of producing all this food that we don’t eat is significant – it takes 8.3 million hectares of agricultural land to produce just the meat and dairy products wasted in UK households and by consumers, retailers and food services in the US  – This land amounts to seven times the amount of land deforested in Brazil in the past year.

You can read a review HERE

Food Waste

Cargo ships are big pollution culprits

Excellent article here by Stephen Price highlighting the massive pollution caused by cargo ship’s diesel bunker fuel which contains 2,000 times more sulphur than the stuff you put in your car and according to the World Health Organisation the tiny soot particles generated by shipping fuel was responsible for 60,000 deaths worldwide through heart and lung failure.   Read on


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