Shaken, Not Stirred

By Christina McGregor

Publisher of "Green Me Up Scotty!" 

Shaken, not stirred

So it's blog action day. The subject this year ? Climate Change.
First and last, the purpose of Blog Action Day is to create a discussion. We ask bloggers to take a single day out of their schedule and focus it on an important issue.

I took a geology course in college that was dubbed 'rocks for jocks' because it was considered an easy credit. While I enjoyed the plate tectonics as such, it was learning about past climates that tweaked my interest on the subject. Climate Change, formerly known as Global Warming, is the latest media vernacular when reporting on all things green.

I find fear is the number one tactic used by environmental brain-trusts when trying to get their message across. If we don't do X now, we'll get Y later than eventually Z. (Oooh not Z). And Y not. Fear motivates a lot of human behavior - fear of failure - fear of dying - fear of flying - fear of work. I personally fear hummus. When someone puts a bowl of that stuff in front of me I have to leave the room. It's scary. I shudder just thinking about it. Fear as a tactic to fight Climate Change is one dimensional. Actionable yes but educational no. You don't conquer fears by not understanding them. (I'm getting therapy for the hummus btw). 

How does one conquer climate change exactly ? Don a toque when it's cold?

As we look to take action on Blog Action Day - let's try something other than fear as the motivator for change. 

So here's my offering. Climate Change for Christina is 2 fold. The first knowing Climate Change is about the earth's natural evolution over time. You know as we orbit around the sun, stuff happens, ummm, like the southern continents get warmer, I think, umm, yup they do this time of year cause, yah know, they're closer to the sun. Over longer periods of time, the earth's climate has a tendency to change drastically.

The second fold of Climate Change for Christina is mankind. Our nature as survivor & species taking up more of earth's real-estate as each year passes. Our ability to reproduce, adapt and evolve (ha ha) to the ever changing climate makes for some bad-ass mammals.

Making sense of the fact that population growth continues while the earth remains the same size is for the scientists to figure out. They've got a pretty good idea now. Yet it's increasingly become more complex and a problem we need to address sooner rather than later. So they say. Thus Climate Change as the subject de jour - and taking better care of the environment - the action. The solution is complex - improving how we re-produce renewable non-carbon-emitting-energy products for the masses. 

Quiz Time

Q: What generates emission free electricity, cools our nuclear tubes and makes for a refreshing beverage? Oil? no. Coal? no. Cow poop? No.

A: For Aqua. In the great white north, we have an abundance of the most important resource of all things life on the planet. The majority of Canada’s power production (just under 60%) comes from hydroelectricity. In Ontario, Nuclear and Hydro combined represent 75% of power production – all of which is non carbon emitting. (*Source:

I'll leave this post with a question.

Q: If our greatest natural resource is the key to human survival, the planet's well being & provider of clean energy. Why we talkin' bout 'clean coal', building wind farms and solar panels when we're ignoring what's got us this far ?

Posted via email from greenblognetwork's posterous


Has Mom Been Teaching Me to Go Green?

By Wesley Cronk

Wesley Cronk is the Sustainability Director for the SEEC Foundation.  

Has Mom Been Teaching Me to Go Green?

Writing a paper about sustainable development the other day, I reached the conclusion and needed one final sentence to tie everything together. Struggling to come up with something witty I was picking every last corner of my brain until out of leftfield an old piece of parental advice came to mind: treat others the way you want to be treated.

Actually using this phrase as the last line in my paper would have been a disaster so I left it out. Put in context it made absolutely no sense. This did give me the chance to stop and wonder for a while though. Could my parents have been giving me better advice than I had realized this whole time? Have they been giving me tips for being green this entire time?

After spending an inordinate amount of time thinking about this vague possibility, I realized that a lot of “momisms” are surprisingly applicable to living sustainably. Here are some of the better ones:


·      “Treat others the way you want to be treated”: Exact opposite of the “not in my backyard” mindset that Americans often possess, consciously or not. The perfect example of this is in China, where workers wearing little protection process 90% of the electronic waste that we produce. Laden with toxins and heavy metals, the recycling process is extremely hazardous. Mom would not like the way we are treating the developing world.

·      “Money doesn’t grow on trees”: Mom’s way of condemning deforestation? Sounds like it to me.

·      “Close the door behind you, we don’t live in a barn”: Sometimes accompanied by the “we aren’t air conditioning the neighborhood” line, Mom was teaching me energy efficiency before I knew what energy was. My parents being serious about weatherization could explain why we had so much caulk in the garage.

·      “I’m not your personal taxi service”: Mom was apparently preparing for climate change before Al Gore. Explains why I rode a bike so many places when I was younger.

·      I brought you into this world and I can take you out”: This was less motherly advice than it was a reality check for when I acted up. Regardless, it holds true on the largest scale. Earth has nurtured humanity to this point and has the ability to wipe us out. Lucky for me my Mom couldn’t punish me with climate change.


I admit that the entire concept of this post is a bit of a stretch but I wanted to follow through with it because I did come to some realizations during this exercise. American society has developed an out-of-sight, out-of-mind attitude that has let us stray from some fundamentals. Would you be upset with China dumping their toxic waste in the park near your house? I’m sure they aren’t happy with us when they get cancer from ours.


Mom was right about more than I want to admit. If you are ever trying to think of a way that you can live ‘greener’ try going back to the basics and consider that motherly advice you stored away in the archives of your mind. Just don’t tell your Mom that she was right or you will get a momism that you don’t want: “I told you so.” 

Posted via email from greenblognetwork's posterous