Environment

Harris Teeter to Donate $45,000 to Local Food Banks

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

Media Invited to Attend Check Presentation

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11963853.htm

Categories: Environment

Industrial Control and Factory Automation Market Projected to Reach...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

The report describes the value chain in the industry by considering all the major stakeholders and their role in the analysis. America holds the maximum share of the Factory Automation market, with...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/factory-automation-market/forecast-to-2020/prweb11966027.htm

Categories: Environment

SMI Introduces MEMS Pressure Sensor for Pressure Switch Designs

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

SMI launches the new SM6842 MEMS ultra-small, ported pressure sensor especially designed for pressure switch designs and high volume OEM manufacturing. The small form factor provides design flexiblity...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11969126.htm

Categories: Environment

New Amazon Tours Website Released by Rainforest Cruises

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

Amazon River Cruise specialist, Rainforest Cruises, launches a new website targeting adventure travelers. Aimed at web-savvy tour seekers, Amazontours.co will offer details on the range of available...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11971924.htm

Categories: Environment

Olson Iron is Now Offering Protective Solar Shades in Las Vegas at the...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

Olson Iron is now offering protective solar shades in Las Vegas at the most cost-competitive prices.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/olson-iron-custom-wrought/iron-showroom-nevada/prweb11972865.htm

Categories: Environment

City Edge Apartment Hotels Now offers Melbourne Budget Accommodation...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

City Edge Apartment Hotels, the most renowned name among Melbourne budget accommodations is now offering accommodation to the leisure travellers at the most affordable prices.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/melbourne-hotels/city-edge-accommodation/prweb11972876.htm

Categories: Environment

Green Me Locally Launches National Green Business Pay It Forward...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

Green Me Locally is seeking out eco-friendly businesses, environmental non-profit organizations, and health and wellness businesses to become recipients of their Pay It Forward gift. They are...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11972905.htm

Categories: Environment

New Cookbook: Spices & Seasons: Simple, Sustainable Indian Flavors...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 14:37

Indian cooking meets sustainable living. Cookbook author Rinku Bhattacharya introduces 150+ simple, seasonal recipes designed to reduce your family’s food footprint and explore the joys of farmers’...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11965585.htm

Categories: Environment

Why the food movement and family farmers need to learn to get along, little dogies

Grist.org - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 12:02

This article is part of a mini-series on the plight of the mid-sized farm. Read part 1 on the difficulties of organic farming.

If I were still working the Smith family land, I’d be a fifth-generation Montana rancher. Instead, 628 miles, countless pairs of skinny jeans, and one internet job separate me from the family profession. Even after nearly a decade away, though, it doesn’t take much to take me back.

About a year ago, my boyfriend and I were clutching hands and whispering sweet nothings in a dive bar’s midnight air. When the jukebox switched to “I’m So Lonesome I Could Cry,” the crowd and smell of stale beer faded away as I sat back, invisible hat in hand, to gaze at a hidden Montana horizon. My boyfriend glanced up from his beer to see his love-filled girlfriend transformed into a wistful, weatherbeaten Clint Eastwood squeezing back a horse-turd tear. “You’ve got to make me a mix of old country songs,” he said. “You don’t make mixtapes of songs like this,” Eastwood growled, squinting and drifting back to Hank Williams, Sr.

I’m gruff and conflicted when it comes to agriculture. While I love the farmers markets and food scene of Seattle, I miss our family cattle ranch, and the wheat farm my grandparents recently sold. I’ll dim the lights, massage my kale, and devour stories about food, but I feel a gulf between the world of the food movement and that of the mid-sized farms I grew up on and around. I watch countless cool-but-teeny urban ag projects pop up in cities across the U.S. that inspire but grapple with problems of scope. Meanwhile, Big Ag strengthens its hold and swallows up everything in the wide miles between — where much of our food actually comes from, where I come from. And so, whenever classic country comes on, I get dust in my eye thinking of the red dirt roads and the disappearing, simpler life they lead to. But was it ever really so simple?

My music-induced nostalgia has international company. In a Radiolab segment on music, Columbia University anthropologist of music Aaron Fox explains that, counterintuitively, country and western has roots in American urbanization. The first hit country song popped up in 1927, the year the U.S. population majority transitioned from rural to urban. “Country music is born when the country becomes a nostalgic ideal,” Fox says in the Radiolab segment. The crying steel guitars and vocalizations conjure up feelings of migration and regret, he says. And now, classic country is popular in developing countries, where everyone from Australian Aborigines to Zimbabweans (who fill soccer stadiums to see Don Williams play) understands the language of leaving the land behind afresh.

Drawing inspiration from Ben Adler’s mixtape love letter to the parks that birthed hip hop, I planned on writing about the waning of the family farm and accompanying it with a mix of my favorite old, nostalgic country songs. Combining Patsy Cline and sad stats about disappearing U.S. farmland proved too depressing for me, though, and the story stayed stuck until author, farmer, and chef Dan Barber visited the Grist office. Beyond being a third-plate philosopher and first-rate raconteur on food issues, he caught my ear and surprised me when he skipped the farmers market to argue for the plight of mid-size farms like the one I grew up on.

Constituting about 45 percent of our agriculture, these farms are “too big to pack up a pickup truck and sell at a farmers market, but they are increasingly much too small to compete in the Walmartification of the food system,” says Barber. “They’re literally stuck in the middle.”

Fifth-generation farmer and Daily Yonder columnist Richard Oswald echoes this sentiment. “In America, we have two really visible types of agriculture,” he said on a recent The Farm Report podcast. “The large corporate agriculture … and then we have the local food movement.” In the middle, he says, are the family farmers who possess the cumulative knowledge of the land locavores romanticize, but have also modernized operations in ways the food movement might not approve of. As a result, food writers “tend to lump us all in with the industrial food folks. It makes it really difficult for people like me who have to struggle and fight just to stay on the farm at all.”

A recent USDA report lays out what that means on the ground: “The median farm operator household consistently incurs a net loss from farming activities, which means that most farm operator households rely on off-farm income to sustain them.” Or, to put it in popular decorative-plate terms: “Behind every good farmer, there’s a wife who works in town.” Whether it’s the husband or wife making that daily trip to an office job, the situation is often perilous, and the family farmers who are still in the game usually aren’t in it to make the big bucks.

There are reasons beyond nostalgia why foodies should care about the mid-sized farm: Without them, it’s easy to imagine a future where Big Ag dominates the American diet and local food remains a niche for those who can afford it. “[The small specialty farmer] isn’t feeding a lot of people. Essentially they’re bringing to market these cream-of-the-crop type of vegetables that are very hard on the soil,” Barber says.

And we’re already headed in that direction: “We just plowed up a million acres of virgin prairie in the last 10 years at the heart of the farm-to-table movement,” Barber says.

So what to do? Barber hopes we can broaden the food movement for the sake of the food system at large. “It’s important to support the farm-to-table movement,” Barber says, “but we somehow have got to make the issue of mid-size farming sexy and approachable.”

While I agree that much can and must be done to make mid-size farming sexy to foodies, turning a conventional farm into a sustainable one is no easy task. Struggling to make ends meet does not foster an environment of innovation, experimentation, and complicated crop/animal rotations. Beyond issues with infrastructure and outreach, we also have to find common ground in two cultures that more often seem to clash.

This tension is part of my family lore. When my grandfather dropped my mother off at college, it wasn’t at the university he preferred. He would have liked her to study at the farm school where all good neighbor kids went. It had a good ag program, and it was closer to home. Instead, his oldest daughter picked the University of Montana in Missoula, the Montana equivalent of Portland. When she got out of the truck, my grandpa took a good, hard look around at her classmates and muttered, “Goddamn beatniks.”

That kind of sentiment gets passed down just like the land. Thirty years later, “Californian” was still one of the worst insults you could throw out at my grade school. We snickered at tourists sitting white-knuckled in Lexuses behind highway cattle drives. I grew up with kids who weren’t allowed to watch Captain Planet. There’s a common sentiment that goes beyond your standard outsider shunning: These city folk think they know better than us with their fancy cars, magic rings, and cool berets.

And for all of the cultural invasion of farmers markets, perception of “flyover country” hasn’t changed much either. A coworker was surprised that I love Montana and said that my haircut suggested I hated the place. One well-meaning friend from the city took a look at the wide-open spaces surrounding our ranch and said, “It’s a miracle you turned out so … cultured.”

In order to save mid-sized farms for the sake of the food movement and the people who own them, we’ll need to learn how talk to each other first. To urban foodies: Rural life is more nuanced and intelligent than you might perceive. To the farmers: There’s a generation of folks who are interested and educated about food — and they’re willing to pay more for a greener effort and more stable farming system.

My dad once told me a bit of my grandfather’s life wisdom at an apt moment. “You can shovel shit for a living so long as you do it better than the next man,” he said as I chipped at a pile of frozen manure. While I think he means I should be scrambling up the ladder of the lucrative field of environmental journalism, I’m going to take a completely unrelated lesson from it.

I’m off the farm, but in a way I’m still shoveling shit. I push around digested material; ideas often go through four stomachs before they end up under my byline. But I’ve learned that by breaking down the cellulose and straining out the nutrients, sometimes you lose complexities and nuance. You end up with beatniks and a big pile of nostalgia. I know better now than to reduce my homeland to songs about lost lovers and shuttered farms. There’s still opportunity in that land and people are there trying to seize it. And I want to do farm life more justice than the next man.

So, rather than sad stats and old songs, I’m going to talk to someone on the ground about the gap between the food movement and mid-size operations, and what it would take to turn a somewhat-conventional farm into a sustainable one. I’m going to talk to my dad.


Filed under: Article, Food, Living
Categories: Environment

The Deirdre Imus Environmental Health Center at HackensackUMC is...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Author and health advocate Deirdre Imus is pleased to announce that The Deirdre Imus Environmental Health Center collaborated with Hackensack University Medical Center to earn Practice Greenhealth’s...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11957379.htm

Categories: Environment

Nine Students Awarded Scholarships from USA Water Ski Foundation

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Scholarships are supported by contributions from individuals, corporations and families.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/USAWSF-ScholarshipWinners/2014/prweb11963602.htm

Categories: Environment

ORTEC Teams Up With TomTom Telematics to Improve Global Routing and...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

ORTEC, a global provider of advanced analytics for predictive commerce, has teamed up with TomTom Telematics to improve global routing and scheduling solutions enabling fleet operators to deliver...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11970667.htm

Categories: Environment

Living Water International Announces 2014 Gala Honoring Women on Bio...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Global Water Mission Depends on Women, Says Living Water International President Emeritus

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11972661.htm

Categories: Environment

Patio and Deck Cleaning Experts at Renew Crew of Johnson County Launch...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Renew Crew of Johnson County will use its new weekly photo blog as a place to show homeowners the amazing cleaning transformations possible with the Renew Crew process.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/deck-cleaning/kansas-city/prweb11913550.htm

Categories: Environment

Intelex Welcomes Renowned Environmental Compliance Expert Teck Lee

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Esteemed Expert to Advance Growth of Environmental Compliance Offering

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11967155.htm

Categories: Environment

Award Winning Lighting Designer Christopher Thompson and the Studio...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Lighting Designer and founder of Studio Lux, Christopher Thompson has recently been awarded a contract for the lighting design of interior tenant improvements and the historic restoration of the...

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11969249.htm

Categories: Environment

Next Step Living Secures $25 Million in Series D Financing to Grow...

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:37

Braemar Energy Ventures Leads Round

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11972202.htm

Categories: Environment

Open-source seeds: While they spread shoots, they plant ideas

Grist.org - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 11:00

Does this seem fair? A plant breeder at a public university manages to grow a long-necked broccoli that, for easy cutting, stands tall above its leaves. Then a company that has used his creation to breed a slightly different broccoli submits it for a patent, claiming ownership over the very idea of long-necked broccoli.

So far, the company, Monsanto subsidiary Seminis, has failed to persuade the U.S. Patent Office to grant it a broad “utility patent.” But Seminis has appealed. If it succeeds, the original breeders, who shared their seeds freely, could be barred from working with their own seeds.

Surely there’s a better way.

This story launches Lisa Hamilton’s beautifully written piece in the Virginia Quarterly Review on open-source seeds: Linux for Lettuce. It’s the kind of longread that both deserves and demands the sort of focus that’s hard to achieve if you are connected to the internet.

Hamilton has done enough research to provide an authoritative tour, and she’s a graceful enough writer to capture not only what people say but how they say it. Broccoli-breeding Oregon State University geneticist Jim Myers, for example:

… has dark hair and dark eyes that are often set behind tinted glasses. In public, he rarely registers enough emotion to move the thick mustache framing his mouth. Still, as he talked about the broccoli his voice buckled, and behind those shadowy lenses his eyes looked hard and tense.

The proposed solution is something I’ve written about before: The Open-Source Seed Initiative (OSSI) has started to look for a way to make un-patentable seeds. The idea is that, if a breeder like Myers declared his broccoli seeds were open source, then companies like Seminis would be barred from using them to create sweeping patent claims.

But there’s a problem: Unlike software — which falls under copyright law — an open-source contract on seeds is not enforceable (unless someone first patents it, then declares it open source, and that’s not going to happen). The open-source seed movement had wanted to create “a national park of germplasm,” a protected common treasure for all. To really achieve this goal they’d need to get legislators to change laws. And they are trying to do that, but it takes a long time.

In the meantime, open-source seeds are proliferating anyway. I received a package full of them recently: There’s packets of red ursa kale, sovereign carrots, white salmon spelt, lemon pastel calendula, red head quinoa, and hyper red rumple waved lettuce. (You can get these crazy seeds here.) Each packet bears a pledge: just three sentences saying that these seeds shall not be patented. It may not be legally binding, but it would sure be awkward to explain to a judge that you’d used genetics bearing this pledge to stake your claim of private ownership.

As Hamilton puts it:

[I]t’s almost as if [the open-source campaigners] have replaced seeds as software with a new metaphor — one inspired by plant breeding itself. Instead of building a protective barrier, OSSI would reach out into the world as widely as possible. Each time open-source seed was shared, the message on the packet would germinate in new minds: It would prod the uninformed to question why seeds would not be freely exchanged — why this pledge was even necessary. It would inspire those who already knew the issues of intellectual property to care more and spread the word. As the seed multiplied, so would the message. With three simple sentences, OSSI would propagate participants in the new movement like seedlings. They would breed resistance.

There’s more where that poetic passage came from, including a brief history of how seed patents evolved. Seriously, check it out.


Filed under: Article, Business & Technology, Food
Categories: Environment

New Pediatric Environmental Training Resource Available

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 08:37

The Children’s Environmental Health Network has released an updated training resource on Pediatric Environmental Health for health care faculty and health care providers.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/CEHN/PediatricTrainingResource/prweb11952740.htm

Categories: Environment

Spill Center Mobile Instantly Reports Environmental Spills

PR Web - Wed, 06/25/2014 - 08:37

The Spill Center app enables users to report spills from anywhere using a mobile device - allowing immediate response to request cleanup and safe disposal of spilled materials.

(PRWeb June 25, 2014)

Read the full story at http://www.prweb.com/releases/2014/06/prweb11963439.htm

Categories: Environment

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