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Gardens at NYC Public Schools

There’s a cool new initiative in New York City and it’s for the school kids. Grow-to-Learn is a school garden program offering mini-grants to public city schools. These grants are for the students to learn how to build, grow, and manage a garden. All of which requiring a hands on experience and teamwork. Not only getting them outdoors but also building their connection to earth—away from technology.

Living in the city makes a hobby like horticulture seem difficult. Most city natives have this misconception because we imagine a garden needing a lot of land. Rather, we just haven’t tried it on this scale yet. Gardens are actually easily adaptable into any landscape.

The Grow-to-Learn program allows public schools to start a new garden or expand on an existing one. They provide free material for building and maintaining gardens and they also have a lot of great resources for garden maintenance. From tips/guides, to training videos, to toolkits of larger projects that’ll really give kids a hands-on learning experience. Grow-to-Learn’s online curriculum is for grade school through high school.

Click here if you would like to introduce this to your children’s school or parent committee, please visit their official page to register, apply, and get more information.

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Rise for Climate, Jobs, and Justice

In just 2 months (on Saturday, September 8th) we are demanding that our elected officials take a stand for our environment now. A sustainable future is something we hear of often and want to create but we are not striving enough to create it. That window of time humanity has to reverse the effects of excess carbon dioxide emissions and plastic pollution is closing fast.

Change certainly does occur from the bottom up, but we don’t have time to wait around. Citizens need to press their representatives about doing what is in everyone’s favor and not for profits. And this is what we are rising up for… to ensure that the decisions we are making cohesively fit with a healthy environment, to ensure that policy changes happen immediately, to ensure people and justice are prioritized above profits, and to ensure that our humanity is becoming sustainable now. (Click any below image to enlarge.)

EyimISrw FOSSIL FREE MONA CARON NOT A PENNY MORE color hand

100% renewables color open sky No New F.F.P. Foot color Keep it in the ground-MonaCaron-color_11x17

Print FOSSIL FREE yellow color Not a Penny More Pipeline color

As we demand these actions take place, we also understand the incredible amount of work that goes into it. Learning what old habits are not good for the earth, putting the effort into teaching others, and working together to build an infrastructure that respects the earth’s natural cycles. The Global Climate Action Summit takes place the following week from September 12 through September 14, bringing leaders from across the globe to talk environmental politics. It is a new era in time!

For a map of events in your area click here.

Get involved, this earth is the only home we will ever have.

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#PointlessPlastic

Plastic was created for the sake of human convenience.

Invented in 1898 and popularized in the 1960s, plastic replaced heavy materials (such as metal) and has since been used for nearly anything, everywhere (The Atlantic, 2014). It’s used so much that plastic pollution has become a prominent issue for the entire world—coastal cities are the first to face face those consequences. Widespread use is seen as a need for consumers but what most consumers don’t actually realize is, there is a larger cost for this “convenience.”

Considering the amount of technology that exists and how much smarter we about our earth, we have the resources to stray away from plastic use–or to at least begin the rollback of using it. The fate of our natural world honestly depends on it.

The changes that we need to see in an environmental respect are possible. Using less plastic though, requires some planning for businesses as well as for individuals. But since individuals can make the changes much more quicker than in large companies, where should we begin with them?

Each and everyone of us are consumers. Whether we are buying frequently or not… even trends constantly generate business. We create the demand for businesses to give us what we want and that’s the same exact rhetoric I’m implying we use here. As consumers, we need to show businesses where they are at fault, where they can do better, and that the change is necessary.

Greenpeace is doing exactly that by putting big business markets on blast with their #PointlessPlastic project. By using your social media platforms, share proof of excess plastic using the hashtag #PointlessPlastic and tag the big chains responsible (like Trader Joe’s or Costco). Below are examples of what excess plastic looks like:

apples pointless plastic
Image source: Twitter

avocados pointless plastic
Image source: Daily Mail (UK)

halo clementines pointless plastic
Image source: Buzzfeed

Greenpeace is also featuring photos (a small incentive) but something larger is surely developing. Projects like this create awareness no matter how little. They raise questions in people who are unfamiliar with environmental issues. They force people to reflect on their decisions that can ultimately contribute to plastic pollution. Do you want to get involved? Click here to download Greenpeace’s action toolkit. Or, if you’d like to submit a #PointlessPlastic photo to the organization, click here.

Don’t be afraid to speak up for our planet!

Sources
Laskow, Sarah. “How the Plastic Bag Became So Popular.” The Atlantic, Oct 2014. Jun 2018. https://www.theatlantic.com/technology/archive/2014/10/how-the-plastic-bag-became-so-popular/381065/.

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World Oceans Day 2018

Image source: NYC Plastic Bag Report

This World Ocean’s Day, StayBlooming.com is challenging you!

Ocean health is not something that we hear about often but it definitely affects you.  With our planet being made up of 71% water, salt water makes up 97.5% of that. The quality and condition of our oceans affect marine life, coastlines, weather patterns, and more. All of which affect life as we know it so we must act. Taking care of our ocean means understanding how human behavior contributes to the biggest ocean health issue: pollution.

Here are 3 major ways you can help keep our oceans clean:

world oceans day 1

world oceans day 3

world oceans day 2

Get in on the action. Send pictures of how you help clean the ocean to alyssablooms@gmail.com or us #istayblooming on Instagram for a feature!

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Earth Overshoot Day

Yesterday was World Environment Day and it was awesome to see how many more people are becoming eco-conscious. The environmental conversation is becoming more prominent. People want to learn more and they want to get involved. Days like yesterday are meant to invoke thoughts like how we treat our environment, what is our connection to it, and how can our everyday behavior help sustain it?

It’s actually not that easy to grasp and there’s an explanation for this.  Environmental science encompasses several sciences. It includes studies of biology, chemistry, geology, physics, ecology, and many other natural sciences, their relationship to each other, and the larger schema they make up. It’s basically a lot to scientifically keep up with especially because the world is ever-changing in nature.

An important discussion in the environmental world (no pun intended) is collecting and analyzing data to interpret human behavior, the damage done to the environment, and how we can remediate that. One way that people can do that now is by Greening At the Local Level and calculating their ecological footprint. This is important because it allows you to understand which parts of your everyday life are contributing to greenhouse gas emissions. The excess of greenhouse gases warm the atmosphere and cause climate change; a later domino effect of changes like food disparities, soil erosion (growing deserts), wildlife adapting to different habitats, and many, many others can be observed around the world.

Now, what is Earth Overshoot Day and how is it relevant?  This is the day that our annual consumption demands exceed what the earth can regenerate in a year—within nature’s means.

Formerly known as Ecological Debt Day, the world’s average overshoot day is August 2nd which leaves us at a big deficit. For the rest of each year we are producing more greenhouse gases than the environment can cycle naturally. Every year the overshoot date may change depending on the consumption rates analyzed. See image below for earth overshoot dates in different parts of the world for 2018. This gives humanity a different perspective of the same concept. Making it easier to understand because not only can we relate it to our everyday lives but we can also draw the connection to how we’re responsible.

global-footprint-network-1525441101gkn48

This year’s earth overshoot date is August 1st. So what are some things you can do to help the cause? The Global Footprint Network is taking a stand to #MoveTheDate. By encouraging people to make small changes in their everyday life, they’re also encouraging that we push the overshoot date back. With doing this, we allow nature to naturally cycle greenhouse gases without an overabundance and that helps the atmosphere from warming.

Some ways to get involved that seem minor but help greatly include:

  • a plant-based diet
  • riding bike
  • collecting trash locally
  • talk to your representatives
  • educate others

What are some ways that you help prevent excess greenhouse gas emissions? Share with us at alyssablooms@gmail.com for an Instagram feature! ✨