We’ve made enough plastic trash to bury Manhattan under 2-miles of the stuff

July 21, 2017 by  
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Whether you get an iced latte to-go in the morning, your restaurant leftovers in a plastic takeaway container, or forget to take a reusable bags to the store, there are numerous ways  disposable plastic  adds up –   and that is a huge problem. According to the first global analysis of the production of plastics, humans now produce more plastic than anything else and, as a result, have created 8.3 billion tonnes of the stuff since the 1950s. If the trend continues, humans will eventually bury the planet in plastics, which require hundreds — if not thousands — of years to decompose. The study was published in Science Advances and unearthed some dizzying facts. For instance, around 79 percent of the plastic produced ends up in landfills, where it is simply buried and forgotten. Additionally, a large percentage of this waste goes into the oceans where it contaminates the environment , often times poisons or chokes wildlife, and breaks down into tiny pieces, which later collect in giant convergences such as the Great Pacific Garbage Patch . The study also found that only 9 percent of all plastics are recycled, and a further 12 percent are incinerated. “The only way to permanently eliminate plastic waste” is to burn or melt it down, the authors wrote . “Thus, near-permanent contamination of the natural environment with plastic waste is a growing concern.” For the study, the researchers looked at various kinds of plastics, from resin to fibers. They deduced that production has increased from around 2 million tonnes (2.2 m tons) a year in 1950 to an astonishing 400 million tonnes (440 m tons) in 2015. Plastic is now the most produced man-made material, with the exception of items such as steel and cement. However, unlike those two industrial materials which are put to use for decades, plastic is single-use, therefore, is most often discarded right away. The researchers make it clear that while it is not plausible to completely eliminate plastic from the modern world, production and use needs to decrease dramatically to benefit the ecosystem as a whole. “Most plastics don’t biodegrade in any meaningful sense, so the plastic waste humans have generated could be with us for hundreds or even thousands of years,” said Jenna Jambeck, who co-authored the study. “Our estimates underscore the need to think critically about the materials we use and our waste management practices.” The advice is spot-on, considering a recent paper found the micro plastics were present in every marine animal which was sampled in Australia — even those thought to be inaccessible. Related: Scotland bans plastic bags, spares landfill 650 million bags in just one year To reduce your dependence on plastic, you can buy whole, unprocessed foods and biodegradable soaps in bulk and keep them in mason jars at home, remember to take your reusable bags to the grocery store and farmer’s market and take advantage of thrift store offerings (or similar apps which connect you with second-hand goods) to reduce waste and needless packaging. Making this effort will help reduce the amount of plastic in the environment and, as a result, ensure a habitable environment exists for future generations. + Science Advances Via LA Times Images via Depositphotos and   Pixabay

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We’ve made enough plastic trash to bury Manhattan under 2-miles of the stuff

Detroit nonprofit seeks crowdfunding for new East Side community garden

August 11, 2016 by  
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Community gardens have been popping up all over Detroit in recent years, as local residents work cooperatively to reinvigorate their struggling city. A new project planned for the city’s east side will take the trend a step further. In a partnership between a local nonprofit, two state government agencies, and the community at large, a nearly abandoned plot will be transformed into a community herb and vegetable garden with an adjacent building for community events and classes. True to form, the project can’t take off without healthy community support, and a crowdfunding campaign is underway to raise half of the money needed to build the much-needed resource. Wolverine Human Services is the nonprofit organizing the project for the Jefferson-Mack neighborhood of east Detroit, near its addiction recovery facility Wolverine Center and the John S. Vitale Community Center. The East Side Community Garden and Farmers Market’s crowdfunding campaign , launched on Patronicity on July 25, aims to raise $50,000. If that goal is met, two state agencies (Michigan Economic Development Corporation and Michigan State Housing Development Authority) will double the funds through their Public Spaces, Community Places grant match program for a total project budget of $100,000. In a neighborhood on the brink of blight, the project seeks to add a community garden and training facility where residents can tend crops, learn about sustainability and farming, and build strong relationships with their neighbors. Related: Detroit’s largest urban farm to grow 60 acres of fresh produce The garden will include a series of 4-foot by 8-foot raised beds, with paved pathways that meet ADA Accessibility regulations so that all Detroit residents will be welcome and able to participate in growing their own herbs and vegetables. The site will also be home to a mixed-use building, which will host farmers’ markets, retail events, a classroom, and act as storage for agricultural equipment. Wolverine promises the center will be a safe place for residents to work and learn, with abundant lighting and security. Crowdfunding will continue until September 22, 2016. At the time of this report, the campaign has raised more than half of its $50,000 goal. + Support Detroit’s East Side Community Garden and Farmers Market Via Crain’s Images via Wolverine Human Services

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Detroit nonprofit seeks crowdfunding for new East Side community garden

New Chargers and Raiders stadium design features a farmers’ market and electric car charging stations

August 21, 2015 by  
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New Chargers and Raiders stadium design features a farmers’ market and electric car charging stations

OMA unveils plans to transform former tobacco plant site into food hub celebrating local food in Louisville

February 24, 2015 by  
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Read the rest of OMA unveils plans to transform former tobacco plant site into food hub celebrating local food in Louisville Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: community center , community kitchen , farm to fork , farmer’s market , farmers , Food Chain , food hub , food system , kentucky , local food movement , louisville , oma , public plaza , Urban Farming

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OMA unveils plans to transform former tobacco plant site into food hub celebrating local food in Louisville

UGE’s Vertical Axis Wind Turbines now provide green power for the Eiffel Tower

February 24, 2015 by  
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The Eiffel Tower has just unveiled a new, sustainable facelift, and perhaps the most striking update to the famous landmark comes in the form of two of Urban Green Energy’s (UGE) vertical axis wind turbines . Installed 400ft up, within the tower’s iconic framework, the turbines are now providing 10,000kWh of green electricity each year. Read the rest of UGE’s Vertical Axis Wind Turbines now provide green power for the Eiffel Tower Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “wind power” , “wind turbine” , Eiffel Tower , france , green energy , green renovation , green upgrade , landmark , Paris , renewable energy , UGE , urban green energy

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UGE’s Vertical Axis Wind Turbines now provide green power for the Eiffel Tower

Sonoma Mountain Village: North America’s First One Planet Community

August 8, 2014 by  
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Read the rest of Sonoma Mountain Village: North America’s First One Planet Community Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: “energy efficiency” , “solar energy” , “sustainable architecture” , aerial view , Architecture , community plaza , Eco Architecture , eco design , eco-village , farmer’s market , green architecture , Green Building , green design , green materials , green neighborhood , leed platinum buildings , mixed use community , northern california wine country , one planet community , renewable energy , self-sustaining , solar panels , Solar Power , Sustainable Building , sustainable design

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Sonoma Mountain Village: North America’s First One Planet Community

Real Food Farm’s Mobile Market is a Produce Oasis in the Food Deserts of Baltimore

August 7, 2013 by  
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Read the rest of Real Food Farm’s Mobile Market is a Produce Oasis in the Food Deserts of Baltimore Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: Baltimore , center for design practice , clifton park , eco design , farmer’s market , food desert , Gardening , green design , maryland institute college of art , mobile food market , mobile market , real food farm , sustainable design , sustainable farming , sustainable food , urban farm , Urban Farming        

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Real Food Farm’s Mobile Market is a Produce Oasis in the Food Deserts of Baltimore

Dubai’s First Farmers Market Brings Local Produce to Consumers

July 19, 2013 by  
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Burj Khalifa photo from Shutterstock It’s not news that many of us are  buying locally grown produce on a regular basis. However farm-to-table lovers in Dubai have not been able to enjoy the same access to these earthly delights, until now. Thanks to British ex-pat Yael Mejia, who opened Dubai’s first farmers market just three years ago, Dubai shoppers can finally taste of what local producers have to offer. It took several years for Mejia to make this market a reality, but her hard has work paid off. Starting with produce from only three farms, the market now sells goods from eight different vendors and it continues to grow in both size and popularity. Read the rest of Dubai’s First Farmers Market Brings Local Produce to Consumers Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: baker and spice , burj khalifa , dubai farmers market , Emirates Towers hotel , farmers market middle east , local food movement abu dubai , local produce dubai , Yael Mejia        

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Dubai’s First Farmers Market Brings Local Produce to Consumers

The Mattapan Mobile Farmstand Uses Pedal-Power To Bring the Farmers Market To Your Door

October 12, 2012 by  
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Farmers market produce is always better than the grocery store, but it’s not always as convenient. A Boston-based nonprofit design collaborative called  Building Research + Architecture + Community Exchange  (BR+A+CE, or “brace” for short) recently unveiled a pedal-powered alternative that allows the farmers to bring the goods to you instead…without a huge truck or nasty carbon emissions. The  Mattapan Mobile Farmstand is a human-powered mini-market. Using smart design principles, BRACE outfitted a typical trike with a folding system of trays that allows a single person to haul up to 150 pounds of fruit and vegetables. Read the rest of The Mattapan Mobile Farmstand Uses Pedal-Power To Bring the Farmers Market To Your Door Permalink | Add to del.icio.us | digg Post tags: boston , Br+a+ce , farmer’s market , food dessert , human power , mobile farm stand , pedal power , Produce

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The Mattapan Mobile Farmstand Uses Pedal-Power To Bring the Farmers Market To Your Door

Local Orbit Makes Local Produce Easy to Buy and Sell in Detroit

September 26, 2011 by  
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Locally grown food is the rage these days, with more and more consumers clearly concerned about where their food is coming from. There is an increasing demand for farm produce and growing need to connect directly with producers. But sometimes it’s not always easy to get local food. What do you do if you want locally grown produce, but cannot visit week-day farmer markets? Local Orbit is a new way to buy food and other local goods direct from producers in your community, if you live in the greater Detroit area. Erika Block is the founder of Local Orbit, an Ann Arbor, MI-based tech startup that facilitates the distribution of local, sustainably farmed food and expects to roll Local Orbit out to many more markets nationwide by 2012 – 2013. How Does Local Orbit Work? Each week, sellers update their inventory. Buyers shop online. Within a 24-hour period, sellers deliver their orders to hub sites, which aggregate and pack orders for individual buyers. Buyers either pick up their orders or have them delivered. Wholesale orders that meet basic minimum quantities are delivered directly to the buyer. Local Orbit makes a small, flat-rate percentage on each sale, similar to selling on eBay or Amazon Marketplace. There is no fee for buyers to shop or for sellers to list. Sellers know the fee percentage upfront and work that into their listing price, so there are no hidden charges for anyone. That’s it. Local Orbit is trying to relink the food chain to make local food widely available and easy to buy.  Local Orbit for Buyers, Image Credit, Local Orbit Local Orbit for Sellers: Image Credit, Local Orbit Why did Local Orbit Come About? Local Orbit has evolved after couple of years of conversations with all stakeholders helping to bring ‘local’ into mainstream -farmers, food producers, chefs, eaters and people working to solve food distribution challenges. The need arose from obvious disconnected markets and inefficient communications. Independent food producers are struggling to build sustainable businesses and provide really good food for their customers. They need distribution and marketing support Producers/ Farmers Sell Well Local Orbit’s online tools provide a “back office in a box” for food hubs, entrepreneurs, farmers markets, coops, institutions and community organizations working to increase local and regional food distribution. Producers get help with all the tools to tell their stories and efficiently manage direct sales.  Market coordinators get customized web sites with e-commerce, payment processing, inventory management, marketing, logistics and customer service. Buyers Score Local and Fresh Produce Buyers get convenient, streamlined purchasing and a direct, traceable supply chain. They have easier access to food that is produced locally and are spending their dollars on local farmers and businesses. Erica Block are working to make local, sustainably produced food widely available and easy to buy -for everyone and was recently chosen as a 2011 PopTech Social Innovation Fellow . Kudos Erica!

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Local Orbit Makes Local Produce Easy to Buy and Sell in Detroit

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