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Eco-Sense Living for the Modern Era!

Meet Ann and Gord Baird! This family strives for a biocentric life, a way of living that utilises gardening and the earth’s many natural energy sources to allow them to live symbiotically with the land around them. Their life philosophy focuses on family, community, the environment, and on teaching others how to live in a sustainable way. Their home has been deemed the “World’s Greenest Modern House” by the Living Building rating system – the greenest rating system used worldwide. Their house features thermal hot water, passive solar power, rainwater harvesting, compostable toilets and a living roof! Their blog has information on workshops they do, good plants to plant in your garden, and a documentation of their life in a living building! Check out the page for inspiration, and witness the great work they are doing!3849230392_137a852cb5_b

Dress to Impress: Bird Courtship Rituals

birds of paradiseWooing women, it seems, is a practice not exclusive to the human male. This post from No Ordinary World observes the dramatic and colourful mating rituals of some of the world’s most exotic birds. Click the link to see videos of these birds in action!

no ordinary world

AIX GALERICULATA Mandarin duck

Birds exhibit some of the most elaborate and bizarre courtship rituals of any animals on earth.  Here are a few of the more beautiful and zany examples:

The marvellous spatuletail hummingbird exhibits one of the most extreme courtship rituals (see video below).  The male bird has two elongated tail feathers that end in a large violet-blue disc, or spatule.  The male bird hovers in the air, waving his spatules in front of the female and making a snapping sound with his beak.  To the hummingbird, which is the size of a ping-pong ball, this display costs a lot of energy.  Spectators of this courtship ritual have reported that after he’s done dancing, the male will have to flop down on a branch, exhausted, and sit still for over an hour to regain his strength.  This species of bird is rare and endangered, and lives in only a few…

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21 Tips for Eco Innovation

eco innovationThe blogger at The Gentle Art of Smart Stealing suggests 21 ways to continue to evolve towards a more eco-friendly lifestyle. Check out the list and the links embedded in the article for more information! Find the article here.

This Is a Chemical-Free Zone!

 

natural dye

A lot of the time we consider environmental issues to be that of wildlife, or resource depletion. How often do we consider the clothes we put on our bodies? How are they made? Natural dyes are one way to ensure the fabrics closest to our bodies are not harmful! Monika is a passionate natural dyer, her products are sold on Etsy, and documents her work on her blog – Red 2 White. She posted last month attributing some of her knowledge to Michael Garcia, master dyer! If you want to give it a try, check his books or DVD’s out to get some know-how, and Monika’s blog for ideas and product reviews!

michael garcia

 

Celebrating Nature

As Canadians, we come from such a rich land. Although it can be hard to pry our eyes away from the destruction of our beloved land, and planet, sometimes it is nice to look towards what we still have to enjoy. The Canadian Museum of Nature is doing just that. They’re extremely active within their museum, and dedicated to academic involvements in house, but their blog tells of trips farther afield. Yesterday, their post was written by Dr. Paula Piilonen, a museum mineralogist. She chronicled one day on the Students on Ice Arctic Expedition, where they searched for interesting minerals in Greenland and followed a humpback whale in their zodiacs! Enjoying the environment should not be forgotten in the urge to protect it! nature museum

Feeling Peckish? Pick Up a Fruit!

An article from a great blog we already follow, Food Policy for Thought, tells of a new wave in on-the-go snacking. The Mackay family has created vending machines filled with bananas, and apples, among others,  instead of mars bars and skittles. The daunting task of keeping fruit fresh has successfully been surmounted, and leaves no excuse for the use of preservatives in snack foods! Hopefully these “FruitBar’s” will make their way to Canada soon!

Food (Policy) For Thought

Español

When you are out and about and in need for a snack, vending machines are often the most convenient option. Once you get there, though, all intentions about eating healthy go flying out of the window when faced with the choice between chocolate bars, chips and possibly peanut butter pretzels. This zero-sum game between hunger and indulgence has stopped in Queensland, Australia, though – because they invented the FruitBar.

This is an invention deemed impossible by many: a vending machine offering a variety of fresh fruit. You can choose between a single piece of fruit, a mixed pack, and snack packs with nuts and biscuits.

Located in train stations, schools, hospitals and the like, the response has been overwhelmingly positive. At the Royal Brisbane Hospital, the machines have to be refilled several times a day. Growers join in on the excitement:

“It’s so innovative, it’s not very often…

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The Importance of Urban Farming

nyu urban farmThe New York University’s Urban Farming lab is not only the first agricultural project in the city of New York, but it also has a great blog! This blog to follow recently posted about the importance of Urban Farming. Intellectually stated, and chock full of heavy truths, this article is a must read. Find it here, and peruse the rest of their informative blog, too!

Which Moments are Teaching Moments?

An article from Green Life Smart Life suggests that many moments are teaching moments for going green. The article outlines one hundred tips, tools and resources for creating lessons and projects for students Kindergarten to grade 12. With this list, teachers can be better equipped to support ecological awareness in today’s youth!eco world

Positive Steps Towards Preserving Our Pollinators!

An article recently posted by SAVES, Student ActiVists for Endangered Species, reports that the U.S. government is banning the use of bee-killing pesticides and genetically modified crops within wildlife refuges. The products can be used by spraying, but have typically been used in the seeds. The seeds are soaked in the pesticides so that when they grow, all parts of the plant contain the pesticide internally. This greatly effects the plant, targeted animals, and now admittedly, non-target animals as well.This is to be phased out in refuges and in animal feed by 2016.

Pollinators, like this bee, are an integral part of agriculture. Pesticide's toxicity has been depleting the pollinator population. Banning pesticides and GMO's will help to reverse the damage we have caused and protect our future ecosystem.

Pollinators, like this bee, are an integral part of agriculture. Pesticide’s toxicity has been depleting the pollinator population. Banning pesticides and GMO’s will help to reverse the damage we have caused and protect our future ecosystem.

Given our recent post about the negativity of neonicotinoids, this is pleasing to hear – a positive step towards a more balanced and symbiotic ecosystem. Read their full article here, and follow their blog for more ecological news on endangered species, or to join their club for protecting endangered species!

Another Island Embracing Renewable Energy!

Eco People LTD recently reported Hawaii committing to geothermal energy! Governor Neil Abercrombie signs Bill 2953 which designates the Department of the Hawaiian Home Lands as the only recipient for the royalties from geothermal resources generated on the home lands. This bill is intended to support and encourage the  search and use of geothermal energy – something Abercrombie believes to probably be “inexhaustible.” As a clean, dependable and sustainable energy source we firmly agree with the direction Hawaii is taking! Read the full article below, or at http://bit.ly/1pWFbPT.

Eco News

Here at Eco People we love the idea of Geothermal Energy, a thermal energy generated and stored in the Earth. We love it so much because it seems so natural. From hot springs, geothermal energy has been used for bathing since Paleolithic times and for space heating since ancient Roman times, but it is now better known for electricity generation. Geothermal power is cost effective, reliable, sustainable, and environmentally friendly.

Hawaii could see a geothermal energised future as they are currently facing tough times when it comes to their energy. Almost all their energy is imported and with the ever impending reality of climate change, prices for importing such energy would be increased drastically.

The governor of Hawaii, Neil Abercrombie (I don’t think there’s a link) believes the answer lies beneath the earth and is already making plans to embrace the power of geothermal energy!

“I realise that there’s been…

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