Guest blog by Ella Diamond of Food Waste 4 Thought
Have you ever tossed out a mushy, old head of lettuce, thinking that it’ll break down
within a few days or a week? It’s only lettuce, you think to yourself. It’s natural, so it must not
take too long to decompose. Shockingly, landfill excavations have found instances of it taking 25 entire years for a head of lettuce to decompose! When food gets dumped in landfills, it tries to break down, but it doesn’t have the available oxygen, causing it not only to remain intact, but also to release methane gas
into the atmosphere. This greenhouse gas, more potent than carbon dioxide, makes food
waste a main contributor to climate change as it accounts for the largest source of municipal
waste in landfills. Meanwhile, a staggering one third of food produced worldwide is wasted when this
food could be feeding all of the world’s food insecure individuals.
Last summer I had a film team from South America come to shoot a documentary about my life for TV in Latin America. They offered to pay me $5,000 to spend a week with me. I explained that I don’t accept any payments from media but that they can donate $5,000 to a nonprofit to do good work with. I chose the Fruit Tree Planting Foundation and together we’d plant 100 fruit trees.
So many of our leaders and role models today are influenced deeply by money and corporations. So many of our politicians put corporate interests over what’s best for the people they are elected to serve. Celebrities are paid vast sums of money to sell their fans on stuff they don’t really need. Social media “influencers” have pages that are as much about products as they are about their life or what their page claims to be about.
We live in a world where we are constantly inundated with ads to buy, buy, buy. We are told that we’ll be happier with more stuff. We’ll be happier with luxurious items. Love, sex, and success will come to us if we can attain a certain image through material items.
I am not running for office. I don’t work for the government. But I do consider myself a public servant. I have designed my life to be of service to the people of my nation and the people of the world. As an American citizen, I am dedicated to using my life to improve the lives of those around me. I’ve watched our “public servants” over the last couple of decades, and I’ve learned a lot. From some, I have learned who I want to be. From others, I have learned who I don’t want to be.
I have put countless hours of thought into how I can mold myself to be of best service to my country and the world. And I have put far more hours into solid action, becoming the human I want to be, and leading by a positive example to truly be of service.
I feel today, just before midterm elections 2018, is a timely day to share my personal commitments as a public servant to my nation and the world.
Seeking better health? It’s growing in your own backyard! Nature provides us with medicine through thousands of plants, but many of us just don’t know how to see it. That’s what the Florida Herbal Conference is for! It’s a weekend surrounded by nature to empower the herbalist community.
Welcome to Sustainable Kashi, a permaculture program located within a 40-year-old intentional community in Florida. People travel here from around the world to learn simple living and to gain balance with nature.
Meet the woman stirring up the fashion industry through Conscious Chatter. Fashion is one of the dirtiest industries in the world- spewing chemicals into our water, dumping billions of pounds of textiles into landfills, and trapping the makers of our clothes into modern-day slavery and poverty.
Think it’s impossible to live more sustainably in a small apartment? Think again! This apartment complex in Stockholm, Sweden is an example for us all. It wasn’t a sustainable place until a few residents decided to change it. 6 years ago they started a small garden in the courtyard to grow food, planted edible landscaping to grow even more food, started composting their food waste to make their own soil, and they got chickens to eat their food scraps and make eggs.
Welcome to the world’s first “recycle mall,” located in Sweden, Almost everything sold here is repurposed or upcycled, and anything else sold in the mall must be environmentally ethical. It’s located right next to a recycling facility so people can easily drop off stuff they don’t want anymore, rather than it being wasted. The staff then repairs and refurbishes the items as needed.