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The Stream, November 26: 2015 Will Be Hottest Year On Record

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The  Global Rundown

The Global Rundown

This year will almost certainly be the hottest on record, the World Meteorological Organization announced, and global carbon emissions slowed last year, increasing 0.5 percent. Alaska and British Columbia signed an agreement to improve water quality monitoring in transboundary waters, focusing on mine development in the wake of the Mount Polley mine disaster. The United Nations released a statement saying the mud released during Brazil’s recent mine disaster was toxic. A drought in Somaliland has threatened the food security and livelihoods of hundreds of thousands of people, while vandals in drought-hit California released millions of liters of water from a storage dam.

“There were significant, record heatwaves in many parts of the world [in 2015]. Can we attribute these extreme weather events to climate change? When it comes to temperature, the answer is increasingly yes for some of the big ones.”–Michel Jarraud, secretary-general of the World Meteorological Organization, on the agency’s announcement that 2015 will be the hottest year on record. Global temperatures are now 1 degree Celsius above pre-industrial levels. (Guardian)

By the Numbers

By The Numbers

240,000 people Number who face food insecurity in Somaliland. A drought there has also decimated livestock herds. Guardian

189 million liters Amount of water released when an inflatable dam in California was damaged by vandals. The water was enough to supply 500 homes for a year, according to police. Reuters


Science, Studies, And Reports

Global carbon emissions increased 0.5 percent in 2014, much slower than the 4 percent annual average over the past decade, according to figures published by the Netherlands Environmental Assessment Agency. Emissions declined in Europe, but grew dramatically in India. Guardian

The mud spilled from two tailings dam failures at an iron ore mine in Brazil “contained high levels of toxic heavy metals and other toxic chemicals,” according to a statement released by the United Nations Office of the High Commissioner for Human Rights. The mine operator said the material does not pose risks to human health. Reuters

On the Radar

On The Radar

More than a year after a tailings spill at the Mount Polley mine in British Columbia, the Canadian province signed a memorandum of understanding with Alaska to jointly monitor water quality in transboundary waters. The agreement also proposes more coordination between the two governments on environmental assessments and permits for new mines. Reuters

The post The Stream, November 26: 2015 Will Be Hottest Year On Record appeared first on Circle of Blue WaterNews.

Source: Water News

Source: Water Industry News

8 Ways to have a fun, mindful and eco-friendly holiday season

8 Ways to have a fun, mindful and eco-friendly holiday season

Peaceout green diva holiday imageThe irony of the season is not lost on me. How did we get from a symbolic meal of abundance, sharing, community, gratitude and family to people literally shoving anyone in their path to get in the doors of a store on Thanksgiving Day?

It’s not the magic of the season I recall. We were definitely spoiled with a lot of gifts when I was a kid at Christmas, but being together with family remained the central theme. Little rituals like football with dad, or trying to help my frantic mother with the Thanksgiving dinner, or wrapping gifts with your big brother at midnight on Christmas eve. These are the things I look back on with that gooey, tingly, warm and fuzzy glow. Do I remember the gifts? No, not so much. 

I knew the gift was being with my family, even if we were at odds or snarking at each other or someone was too drunk. I knew this for sure after my father died and the magic went kind of dark, then many family members evacuated the planet in rapid succession, which demolished the holidays for me — for a time.

My well-meaning older sister fought hard to keep us all together and recreate the scenes of our youth, but it never really worked. As my children appeared (as if by magic in this story), I knew it was up to me to create meaningful holidays for them (and for the purpose of this post, “holidays” = Thanksgiving, Christmas, New Years). 

It was my turn to become the standard bearer of this season and set the backdrop of great memories for my offspring. Daunting task. It has evolved over the 30 years since my first was born (wow, can you imagine what I was like as a teen mom? just kidding . . . but I don’t feel as old as all this makes me sound!). Now I have a new role as a Ya Ya (grandmother), and as a green diva, it’s also about making the most eco-friendly holiday possible.

My motto now is buy less, make more, and when I have to buy, I buy local and if I can’t buy local I make for damned sure it is sustainably made, recyclable, and as eco-friendly as possible!

Watch this short and silly Green Divas holiday message, then read on for more ideas!

Here are a few ways to create magic and meaning in the season while
reducing the impact on momma earth

    1. Peace starts within ~ if I want to have a more peaceful and fun holiday season, I have to take darn good care of myself from the inside out. It’s a marathon not a sprint, so take good care and it will be a lot easier for you and those around you! Read my post about personal energy conservation for the holidays. 
    2. Remembering the Reason for the Season ~ whatever holiday you celebrate, try not to be sucked into the commercial marketing aspect of it or the expectations of those that ARE sucked in. Be who you are and shine your love on those around you. No really. I’m not going to get too philosophical, but I’m not sure if there is any religion or belief system (that is a positive one) that being kind and loving and generous isn’t a theme. 
    3. Make stuff ~ I do a lot of holiday preparation with my kids now. From Thanksgiving dishes to holiday crafts, and at least one of my daughters has begun her own creative traditions. Spending time with them coming up with crafty and creative ideas and then sitting around making stuff is probably my very favorite thing to do over the holiday season. Make this amazing vegan hot cocoa gift for friends and family (and yourself). It’s always a huge hit!
    4. Buy less ~ I stopped buying crappy plastic stocking stuffers and filler years Green Divas Consumer Girlago, and I spend a lot of time coming up with USEFUL and cool items, many of which are locally crafted (by real artisans as opposed to my goofy attempts). As a family, we decided years ago to give up the multi-gift crazed thing for Christmas and just focus on handmade items and stockings. We spend less money, consume less packaging in store-bought items, and use much less wrapping paper, but we all have a great time getting creative. I prefer getting a few meaningful gifts than a mess of haphazard (even expensive) gifts. 
    5. Regift ~ seems like a cardinal sin or something, but honestly, we just have way too much stuff and there’s no reason to generate more stuff! I have jewelry to pass down to my girls, or books or special things from my mother and grandmother that have infinitely more meaning to them than anything I could buy at the store (well almost anything).
    6. Buy local ~ I rarely go into a shopping mall EVERY, but I have not stepped foot in a mall between Thanksgiving and New Years in many years now. I have my favorite local shops I go to for the few gifts I don’t make or regift. I am fortunate that I live an an extremely cool little town and I enjoy visiting the store owners and sharing my dollars with them, especially during the holiday season.
    7. Stick to healthy routines ~ it’s a wonderful season to visit with friends and family and attend all those fun parties, but it’s not necessary to toss out all your healthy ways (or become the super annoying vegan drag at the party). There are a lot of ways to maintain balance even if your friends and family are not. Here’s a fun Green Divas Foodie-Philes featuring Jerry James Stone about how he has a healthy vegan/vegetarian holiday season:
    8. Ease up on the decorations ~ for the love of whatever god you believe in (0r none at all), PLEASE don’t create a blow-up doll village on your lawn! I’m sure I’ve offended someone (sorry), but they are probably manufactured in China of questionable plastic fabric, and they use up more energy than we should be wasting on this stuff. Minimize the blazing lights not only for the energy savings, but there is a thing called light pollution, which is serious and we could light up the sky with some neighborhoods that compete for who can be most creative with their holiday light extravaganzas. Listen to this Green Divas Radio Show from the archives for a great feature with the Dark Ranger, Kevin Poe who talks about light pollution.
    9. Gratitude & giving always works ~ even if your family sucks and the world seems bleak for you this season, I bet there is someone who has it worse off than you. Get your gratitude on and go out there and be generous with your time, love, kindness, energy, whatever you have to give. You don’t have to spend money to give amazing gifts, and nothing gets me out of a funk like helping someone who has less. Read my post from last year on how to Be the Light during the holidays. 

The post 8 Ways to have a fun, mindful and eco-friendly holiday season appeared first on The Green Divas.

Source: GreenDivas News

GVK & Shakti Sunfire: Tools for Fear

GVK & Shakti Sunfire: Tools for Fear

jump out of your comfort zone woman jumping


Whether you know her as Laura Blakeman or Shakti Sunfire, her message is the same—you need tools at the ready to deal with fear.

Listen to this GVK episode in which we discuss mindfulness, movement and Laura’s The Rhythm Way, where you’ll find practical tools to help you on your path to freedom.

One of Laura’s tools is to connect with nature.

I completely identified with her profound statement:

“As soon as I go out into Nature…I remember who I am. I remember that I belong to something much larger than this…”

 The key concept for me is something larger than the issue that’s bringing up the fear. Now look, I’m not talking about the kind of fear that one experiences during some kind of violence. I’m talking about old fears that have a grip on you and keep you from raising your human experience from the age old fight or flight syndrome.

I can boil down my fears to very specific events in my life that were emotionally and physically traumatic. I received very clear negative messages from this time period in my life. Because of the young age that I experienced this, the groove that the messages created is deep and repetitive.

When those fears come up, I must be aware and awake enough to use the tools that I have learned over the years to reroute my thinking.

To change my perspective on the issue at hand. Sigh. And for me, it’s all about my thinking. Sometimes, I simply be~lie~ve the lies that I picked up in my teen years. Then I end up spiraling down into the abyss of depression. And that happens because I forget that I have a choice on what to believe.

And I forget that choice because I forget that there’s a power greater than myself at work in my life. For me, having a deep spiritual practice brings me peace during the storms of human~ness. AND, sitting on the Earth—with her amazing creatures and creations all around me—brings me back into remembering that ‘I’m a spiritual being having a human experience‘ faster than any mantra I have ever chanted!



Listen to the the Green Divas Radio Show  to learn about green and healthy living…

Catch the latest Green Divas Radio Show—and other green, healthy and free radio shows—daily on GDGDRadio.com (or get the GDGD Radio app)!

Main image via ShutterStock

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The post GVK & Shakti Sunfire: Tools for Fear appeared first on The Green Divas.

Source: GreenDivas News