This tRump, far tops all environmentalist bs I have ever heard.
Trump said,, “I’m an environmentalist.” Sir! and I have won many awards for it.
This actually isn’t the first time Trump has tried to tell people that he’s a champion of the environment. In 2017, he said, “I’m a very big person when it comes to the environment.” Watch the Vegas clips.
Yes Vegas, from a phony and largest intense man-made city in the world:
Trump went on to say that we have the cleanest air and water.
Yeah right, strip mining entire mountains of coal ash that spills into the rivers in North Carolina and West Virginia. People can’t drink from fountains in Detroit due to lead contamination. Air quality in parts of the Western U.S. was the worst in the world this summer due to smoke from climate-worsened fires.
Much much worst, is yet to come.
Trump administration has launched targeted attacks on public lands, renewable energy, climate science, and so much more. Sure many oilmen, gasmen, coalminers, troops and police love him. For enhancing the greatest threat to humanity under gun point in an ugly swamp of cold hearted creatures called leaders. They are no boss of me.
This makes me more passionate than ever. In the dishonor of Trump.
I've dedicated a high relief sculpture to the Green Party. Untitled :
tRump-Asourass wrecks. A Godzilla like Trump walking over dead fish in rivers and lakes covered in oil with smoke and water on fire. Basically hell on earth.
After building the world largest snowman in Ft. McMurray Canada. Shortly afterwards, nearly half the oilsand city was on fire. An experience that American will suffer from when tRump aim to be number one in gas and oil in the world.
A painting of a city made of gas-firing chimneys, nuke plants, tanks and pipelines of fracking oil refineries. With coal and oil and water mixed skies. In your home where fire runs out of your water taps like many places in the oil sands.
It's actually beautiful in an art peace, yet most horrible way to live.
Nope, it’s not what Europeans think. Trump is endangering the Planet more than China in that although China has by far the largest emissions of greenhouse gases, they also have by far the largest population. So when you compare the data on a ‘pro rata’ bases (per head of population), and take into account that China is rolling out Renewable Energy (solar, hydro and wind) to replace fossil fuels at a faster rate than any other country in the world; then with Trump denying ‘Climate Change’ and champion the fossil fuel Industry, it’s clear that Trump is a menace to the world’s environment.
Temperatures in Britain (and across Europe) have been getting noticeably warmer since the 1980s, and in the past 5 years each summer in the UK has been progressively hotter than the previous; with this summer’s 3 months heatwave breaking all records, since records began 350 years ago.
2018; Heatwaves Strike U.K. and Other Countries in Northern Hemisphere: https://youtu.be/-LhWsRP37W0
The video below I filmed when we visited the annual ‘War and Peace’ Event in Kent, England while on holiday this summer. Normally, the grass would be green and the earth tracks a dark brown (or mud), but as you will see in the video, the grass is brown and the earth has turned to dust (which is something I’ve never witnessed anywhere in Britain before): https://youtu.be/Uo6cnZ-wNkk
So No Trump is Not the Champion of the Environment.
I remember when Bush announced to the world, who was Americans best friend is. I was sure it had to be Canada since we trade more with US than Europe combined.
No, it was UK, their military empire buddy.
I had my US green card taken away from me for refusing Bush a war sculptor. Today, Trump has even a worst relationship with Canada. Add on more wars, arm race returned and refugees madness.
Still even, over all that, the natural environment is the greatest threat to humanity.
I glad you replied, over this most important issues in the world. Yet topics like this, get ignored, that makes me disappointed with this site and especially with American political fairytales.
Yep, I fully agree: Americans just don’t take the natural environment seriously enough; especially Climate Change, which few Americans recognise as being manmade.
I find it so frustrating that Americans are happy to continue to burn fossil fuels and add to the release of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere while the rest of the world are making best efforts to reduce their carbon emissions.
Although it does hearten me that European countries have exceeded their targets to replace the burning of fossil fuels with Renewable Energy e.g. in 1990 67% of electricity in Britain was produced by burning coal, by 2014 (after we had committed to the Paris Agreement on Climate Change) that had been reduced to 30%; last year it was down to just 2%, and this year hardly any coal has been burnt to produce electricity in the UK. It goes to show what can be achieved when there is the ‘will’.
I cringe whenever I hear it said that the USA and UK have a ‘special relationship’ and are the ‘closest of allies’; a concept that is only perpetuated by the Politicians and the Media. For the ordinary British people, like me, we Brits don’t see America as our ‘Special Friend’; we have far more in common with Europe than with America. In fact I’d much rather any special relationship we had across the Atlantic was with Canada than the USA because Canadian and British Culture is far more closely aligned. I can’t stand watching most of American TV programmes because it’s far too loud, ‘in your face’ and shallow for my liking; but the Canadian TV Series, the ‘Murdock Mysteries’ we love e.g. it’s our (British) sense of humour.
Generally, the British Public (about 64% in recent polls) don’t like the American Culture for many reasons; the fact that America was ‘late’ for both world wars has not been forgotten or forgiven by most British People, which doesn’t help. When corresponding with Americans I get so frustrated in that we don’t understand each other on many issues because of our cultural differences e.g. the Americans obsession with greed (putting money first) and their ‘me first attitude’, their obsession with guns, their fear of Trade Unions and Socialism, their content with ‘Industry’ ruling the country through ‘politicians’, and their love for the most expensive health service in the world; just to name a few.
These two videos give some insight into the Cultural Difference between Brits and Americans:-
10 Differences between Brits and Americans: https://youtu.be/_vSKMTDUwV4
Things AMERICANS Who’ve Never Travelled Don’t Know About the World... https://youtu.be/JO1_pW666cY
We think more a like.
First logical rule of a gun is, your three times more likely to kill yourself than someone else.
Good for Britain, coal skies really suck. American Nationaism and Corperationism is more dangerous than Religion. Trump coal is being held up, because gas and green energy has been proven cheaper. That should extend the adverage life expectancy of a goal miner by 27 years longer, who needs a job that bad.
China is leading the world in solar PV generation, world's largest market for both photovoltaics and solar thermal energy as in the last few years, more than half of the total PV additions came from the country.
I have given up building a legal eco villages in North America, tired and can't afford the attacks from Corperationism grid monsters. Moving my operation to Colombia, where the women are hot, hot, hot and it's green all year long.
I build a self substainable tiny house for couples for 1/10 the cost. Like India who has a car 1/10 the cost. That car is most popular in India. That is what I'm aiming for including healthy, affordable and beautiful homes.
Do you make film documentaries?, I would love to do that, in my dream list.
Thanks for your feedback.
Yep, guns ‘suck’, and as a Brit, to me they are completely senseless. One other American prejudice which (as a European) really infuriates me is the Americans fear and hatred of Muslims.
Although our efforts pale into insignificance compared to China, Britain is now (and has been since at least 2012) installing on average one new wind turbine per day. The installation is at such a great pace that at the beginning of 2017 wind power contributed 15% of the UK’s electricity generation, and by the end of 2017 that had increased to 18.5% (and still increasing daily). As of the 30th September this year, there were a total of 9,088 wind turbines in and around the UK e.g. a mixture of offshore and onshore wind farms; although other European countries such as Germany, Denmark and Scotland are way ahead of Britain in our endeavours to replace fossil fuels with Renewable Energy.
I do make film documentaries (of sorts) on YouTube as an amateur; they’re not that brilliant, but I enjoy making them and some people enjoy them. I find it particular useful as a visual aid to give some Americans an insight into what Britain is really like. My main gripe with Americans I correspond with is their perception that Britain is overcrowded because we have such a large population on such a small island. They can’t understand that Britain is 97% rural countryside and that we don’t have urban sprawl and that we don’t build upwards towards the sky.
One such video I made to help demonstrate visually to my American friends that Britain is mainly green countryside was from our recent holiday in Cornwall:
Driving from Talland Beach to Lansallos Village in Cornwall via Polperro: https://youtu.be/vXbZNbOLWwM
However, in watching the video, my American friends couldn’t understand why our country roads are so narrow and insisted that we ought to widen them! It took me many attempts in an exchange of emails to explain that not only are our Cornish Roads a national heritage because they date back over a 1,000 years, but that also they add to the natural beauty of the countryside, and form a safe haven for wildlife.
Studies have shown that the roadside verges in the UK form a natural wildlife corridor that wildlife uses for migration the length and breadth of England in relative safety. Also, 27% of Cornwall (including the area where we were on holiday) is inside a designated AONB (Area of Outstanding Natural Beauty), and therefore is protected land. Apart from the fact that unlike Americans the Brits are not rushing to get from A to B when on holiday but actually enjoy driving on country roads to soak up the beauty of the surrounding countryside.
As a side note, the reason we don’t have urban sprawl in the UK is the ‘Green Belt’ (introduced in 1947); an area of green land, surrounding urban areas, where development is prohibited.
Your work on building self-sustainable housing sounds a really great enterprise; and I wish you all the best in your adventure. Your decision to move your operations to Colombia is no doubt a good choice; the Americans just don’t realise the opportunities they’re missing out on for better ‘greener’ housing by being so obstinate in letting corporate greed ruin their country.
We live in a dangerous time. The doomsday clock is on 2 minutes before 12, closer then during the cold war.
One of the reasons the scientists address is the lack of action towards climate change.
And with Donald Trump as a president of one of the most influential countries on earth we can rightly say: "World, we have a problem!"
As climate change is a global problem, the worst we could get is a president of the US who is looking inward. Stopping international climate treaties and only focusing on the 1%.
Climate change needs international regulations and actions. And it needs tough actions. Many political parties from all over the globe have problems with addressing the problem, as it is not their timescale of four years.
Climate change is difficult to tackle as it is a problem that is so huge that we as human beings are not used to see and act on such a grand scale. We use to tend to small problems with a short time span. This is as well one of the reasons why people do deny climate change.
Climate Change should not be seen as a threat by politicians. It can be seen as an opportunity to find new ways of organizing energy and waste. This can open up huge possibilities.
Great to hear, Castlepaloma, that you've made a sculpture on this theme. Art is one way to let people reflect on their world. I'm an artist myself and can't imagine a world without it. (well I can, but then I start thinking about Hitler's Germany and Stalin's USSR among others)
A country without the freedom of art is lost.
Sadly though Trump is ant- culture. But that's to be expected of an president with fascist tendencies.
Anti-students anti-science anti-art, Nationalist, Elitist. Blaming the foreigners.
Trump is ruining the US with his politics (not the 1% though), and takes the rest of the world with it.
We have to look at the doomsday clock and get serious about it.
Hi peterstreep, I fully agree with your sentiments; although from your comments I get the impression that you are American in that you seem not to be fully aware of the great progress being made on tackling climate change in the rest of the world. The greatest problem is that the progress being made in the rest of the world is being undermined by America’s refusal to accept the Paris Agreement e.g. the USA is the 2nd largest producer of greenhouse gas emissions (14.3% of the world’s total, and rising).
You might be encouraged by this:-
The World’s Largest Offshore Wind Farm (which went live last month off the coast of England: https://youtu.be/rbnlJOEQ9Hc
Every country in the world has now signed the Paris Agreement, albeit there are a small handful of countries yet to ratify their signature through their Governmental system to make it legal; but at least the whole world (except the USA) is committed in principle to reducing greenhouse gas emissions. And 179 of those countries, those countries (except the USA) who have ratified the Paris Agreement (which is virtually the whole world) are taking active measures to reduce greenhouse gas emissions; leaving the USA as the only country in the world to refuse the climate change deal.
The three countries who emit most of the world’s gas emission are China (29.4% and falling), USA (14.3% and rising), and the EU (European) at (9.8% and falling).
Although China is the biggest offender, considering their population is 1.4 billion and the USA’s population is just 326 million; per head of population China is doing remarkably well compared to the USA e.g. Although China’s population is five times larger than the USA, its greenhouse gas emissions is only double that of the USA.
Europe’s original goal in 2012 was to reduce greenhouse gas emission by 20% by 2020 and 30% by 2030. It’s already exceeded its 2020 target, and well on the way of exceeding the 2030 target by 2020 e.g. Europe’s greenhouse gas emissions were down by 22% in 2016 (latest full data). Individual European countries e.g. Germany, Denmark and Scotland have for brief periods managed to meet 100% of their electricity needs purely from Renewable Energy such as wind, solar and hydro etc. Even the UK has done remarkably well, where for example:
In 1990 67% of Britain’s electricity was produced from coal,
In 2014 it was 30%
By 2016 it was down to just 22%,
In 2017 it was down to about 2%, and
This year hardly any coal has been burnt in the UK to produce electricity (the last coal power station in Britain is due to close in 2025).
"Although China is the biggest offender, considering their population is 1.4 billion and the USA’s population is just 326 million; per head of population China is doing remarkably well compared to the USA e.g. Although China’s population is five times larger than the USA, its greenhouse gas emissions is only double that of the USA."
Did you consider that China is "doing remarkably well" because much of their population is living as middle ages peasants, without modern conveniences or need for modern power usage? For Pete's sake, they're plowing the earth with oxen still! Computer ownership is 40 per 1,000 people compared to 760 for the US and 600 for the UK.
China produces about 1.5 times the power the US does...while producing more than double the pollution. I would not say they are doing great!
Power demand is growing rapidly, but at this point they don't pollute (from power generation) because they don't make the power. The second big polluter has to be automobiles, and again they don't pollute (as a nation - urban areas are barely breathable) because they don't have the automobile density of the US.
Wilderness, you are behind the times. What you state was perfectly correct 10 years ago, but China is modernising at an incredibly rapid pace. What’s happing in China today is what happened in Britain during the Industrial Revolution in latter half of the 19th century e.g. mass migration from the rural areas (the villages) to the urban areas (the towns and cities)
In 2010, only 49.7% of Chinese lived in urban areas, this had increased to 59.4% by 2017; and still rising.
For comparison, 83% of people in the UK live in urban areas (17% in Rural areas), and in the USA it’s a similar figure of 81.7% of Americans living in Urban areas. Therefore to reach the same urban/rural balance of Industrialised nations like the UK and the USA, China is rapidly catching up e.g. the old stereotype of the vast majority of Chinese working in paddy fields is outdated.
Likewise, for car ownership, although not every Chinese family owns a car yet, they are rapidly catching up with the Industrialised nations like the UK and USA. Car ownership in the UK and USA has been fairly static for years at (2016) 31.7 million cars in the UK, and 269.8 million cars in the USA.
In China there was only 90.9 million cars in 2010; as of 2017 it’s was 217 million cars (not that far behind the number of cars on American roads). As regards cars contributing towards greenhouse gas emission; China is to ban the sale of all fossil fuel cars in 2025 (in preference for Electric Vehicles) and introduce a total ban on the use of fossil fuel cars at some point after that date. The UK is set to ban the sale of all fossil fuel cars in 2030 with a total ban by 2040; with France and a number of other European Countries following similar policies.
In 2017, China builds world's largest Electric Vehicle charging network with 167,000 stations:- https://youtu.be/92HoppERe2M
As Regards Electricity Production
Percentage of total electricity produced from coal in China in 2011 was 79%, this had dropped to 66% by 2016.
China is now the world's largest electricity producer, passing the USA in 2011 after rapid industrial growth in China since the early 1990s.
Total Electricity Production in China in 2013 was 5,322 TWh, compared to the USA electricity generation in 2016 of 4,077 TWh. So in actual fact China only produces a little more over 20% electricity than America, and only reason they produce twice as much greenhouse gas emissions is purely because they currently burn twice as much coal as the USA(percentage wise); but unlike Trump’s policy, China is actively reducing its reliance on coal with a massive push to roll out Renewable Energy.
In China in 2016 the percentage of electricity generated from Renewable Energy was:-
• Thermal 2.1%
• Hydro 19.5%
• Wind 4%
• Solar 1.1%
• Biomass 1.1%
Total from Renewable Energy in China = 27.8%
In the USA in 2016 the percentage of electricity generated from Renewable Energy was:-
• Hydro = 6.5%
• Wind = 5.5%
• Biomass = 1.5%
Total from Renewable Energy in the USA = 13.5%
In the UK in 2016 the percentage of electricity generated from Renewable Energy was:-
• Wind = 10.6% (5.7% from onshore windfarms and 4.9% from offshore windfarms)
• Biomass e.g. sewage = 8.4%
• Solar = 2.8%
• Hydro = 1.5%
Total from Renewable Energy in the UK = 23.3%
Both China and the UK have exceeded their target of reaching 20% by 2020, and in 2016 China was just over 3% short of reaching the 2030 target of 30%; while the USA lags a long way behind.
China's fast-Track to Renewable Energy: https://youtu.be/apFtEC1-24Q
I'm starting to feel I'm in the right bussiness of eco housing and environment art. Because more Countries can agree on Global warming greater than any other subject in the world.
No I'm Dutch living off the grid in Spain.
And yes, a lot of governments around the globe take climate change seriously, the actions taken are in my humble opinion to little to late and not drastic enough. (I'm not a scientist, so in that respect, it's just an opinion)
The meat and dairy industry for example surpasses the big oil as world’s biggest polluters. Together with the rice paddies they have a huge carbon footstep. These two topics are hardly addressed. No wonder as to take away the hamburger would cause an outcry and loose of votes.
If everybody should eat half the meat then they do today, this would be a huge positive impact on the environment. And so would solar energy.
In Spain for instance there is a tax on solar energy when you live in the city. The Gas companies are so powerful and afraid of independent solar power that they discourage the Spanish government to promote it. (thanks to the tax solar power in Spain is more expensive then being on the grid...)
Even as sunny Spain could build thousands of solar farms and export the energy to Atomic Power loving France. (this is just a local Spanish example.)
I do agree that things are happening, especially in the Northern European countries. Holland just opened it's first bicycle lane made out of recycled plastic bottles. So with innovative ideas we can start to make the world a better place. But we have to hurry, and we can not afford men or women who think like Trump. Thinking in the old capitalistic throw away society that always has to grow.
Politics however does fear radical changes, but in this age, those radical changes will come. May it be from grassroot movements, Social media influencers or by natural disasters itself.
"The meat and dairy industry for example surpasses the big oil as world’s biggest polluters. Together with the rice paddies they have a huge carbon footstep."
I'm curious - how do those industries leave much carbon footprint at all? Particularly one that does involve oil (transportation, for instance; while that leaves a carbon footprint it applies to both oil and those industries, meaning that the ones listed cannot be larger than that of oil).
Hi Wilderness, you can google it with the keywords meat industry and carbon footprint for example as I don't have numbers and figures. But basically it is:. The water used for food that needs to be produced for the cattle, the water that's needed to keep the cattle alive, the water used for cleaning up of all the cow shit.
In short the whole process of producing meat is incredibly costly and asking a lot of the environment.
just a link for a quick search.
https://www.independent.co.uk/environme … 27843.html
Well, I get that water can be expensive, both environmentally and financially. But the only carbon from it is the energy to pump it...if a significant amount is used. Pumping from a surface source is cheap, energy wise. Either way there is no more carbon footprint than from producing that energy (we assume from fossil sources).
From your link: "Burning fuel to produce fertiliser to grow feed, to produce meat and to transport it - and clearing vegetation for grazing - produces 9 per cent of all emissions of carbon dioxide, the most common greenhouse gas." That's what I said, too, but comes back to "big oil" being the root producer of those gases, meaning cows cannot create more than oil.
Methane is mentioned, but does not contribute to a carbon footprint from CO2. Chemicals (fertilizers, feces, etc.) certainly cause pollution, but no CO2. Destroying plant life reduces the amount of CO2 converted to oxygen, but I VERY highly doubt that the amount due to livestock is significant . The link even says it can cause runaway plant growth (weeds) but while that is certainly undesirable, it reduces carbon, not increase it.
Bottom line then is that livestock (didn't investigate rice but suspect is similar) cannot produce more carbon footprint than oil, for most of what it DOES produce comes from oil.
Must be a corporate thing. Overall, the United States ranks 26th among OECD countries with an average life expectancy of 79 years. That would improve if they started showing some basic decency to billions of cows, pigs, and chickens that are slaughtered a year in the United States and they are unhealthy to eat. More than 99% of farm animals in the U.S. are raised in factory farms, many unable to even turn around in small cages. Most American are overweight or Obese. Obesity die at greater numbers than the starving ones in the world.
Just the oil sand in Canada create more air pollution than all the cars in the nation. Wait till fracking, gas and coal energy nightmares sets in the USA.
Over population in is a very serious problem in China. The 2 child law is going in a better direction. The same for their environment, economy and not having a major war since 1979.
Many Europeans are appalled by the overuse and over dependence of artificial fertiliser and pesticides in American agriculture in the USA; destroying the fertility of the land and leaving high levels of toxins in the food and the land.
Most food produced in the USA (including meat products and crops) are banned from sale in Europe either because of the high levels of toxins they contain that are illegal in Europe or because it’s GM (Genetically Modified) Food, which is also illegal in Europe.
I do fully support the EU’s ban on the toxins so commonly used in American food production, but I still have an open mind about GM Foods e.g. I can see the benefits and I’m not yet convinced that the concerns are fully justified.
On a more positive note, Organic Farming is on the increase worldwide (including in the USA), driven primarily by ‘Consumer Led Demand’; albeit America is lagging behind. In Europe, demand for Organic Produce is very high; and generally European people don’t mind paying a little extra for food that is legally certified as being organically grown. It’s now a big market in Europe and growing yearly. Because demand for organic produce is on the rise in Europe more and more European farms are going ‘Organic’ yearly. Although it’s not a quick conversion process because it takes at least three years to detox the land; three years in which the farmer can expect to make a loss, until the land is clean enough to pass all the stringent testing so that it can be certified by the Authorities as ‘Organic’.
Without going into too much detail, land used for Organic Agriculture in different ‘Regions’ of the world (from the highest to the lowest) is as follows (makes for some interesting reading):-
• Oceania e.g. Australia and New Zealand etc. = 12.1 million hectares of organic agricultural land: 38% of the world’s total.
• Europe = 7.8 million hectares of organic agricultural land: 24% of the world’s total; and 5.9% of the total agricultural land within Europe.
• Latin America = 6.4 million hectares of organic agricultural land: 20% of the world’s total.
• Asia e.g. China and India = 2.9 million hectares of organic agricultural land: 9% of the world’s total.
• North America (USA and Canada) = 2.2 million hectares of organic agricultural land: 7% of the world’s total; but only 0.6% of total agricultural land in North America.
• Africa = 1.3 million hectares of organic agricultural land as of 2014.
If you don't mind, I wonder what you see as beneficial in organic produce? You made no mention of conventional produce. Conventional produce being the gigantic field of non GMO produce and non organic produce.
I'm not the slightest bit against organic stuff, but I see it as more just trendy, and because of all the certifications for something being labeled as organic, it simply costs more than I'm generally willing to spend.
So far as GMO things go, I very much dislike the business practices of the infamous Monsanto. It's a pretty vampiric company. It's also now owned by Germany's Bayer corporation.
The use of Roundup isn't without problems. No doubt about that. I used to be heavily into the subject, but so far as I know, the entire point of most GMO produce is the sale of Roundup, as it is one of the most successful commercial chemical products thus far in history.
I try to avoid buying anything with soy in the ingredients. It's pretty hard to do. Insofar as the GMO corn goes, I pretty much give up. I'm going to eat a lot of corn tortilla chips, and I'd rather just not think about it.
There's really not a lot else a person runs into other than papaya. Almost all papaya is GMO, and who ever thinks, 'hey, I sure would like some papaya right now?' Nobody I know ever even mentions that fruit.
Thanks for your views on GMO Wesman. GMO Food is banned for human consumption in Europe, which means a lot of food produce cannot be imported from America, and it also means that European farmers cannot grow GMO food. But as I said, I don’t know enough about the topic so I’ve still got an open mind on whether GMO food is a good thing or not.
As regards ‘Organic Produce’ vs ‘Conventional Produce’; there isn’t a simple answer e.g. it’s by degrees. What I mean by this is that for production of ‘Conventional Produce’ which chemicals can be used in its production e.g. chemicals in fertilisers, chemicals in pesticides, chemicals in processed foods for artificial colouring, artificial flavouring and preservatives, are all heavily regulated by the European Union. The European Union will only approve a chemical as ‘safe’ to use once they have satisfied themselves beyond reasonable doubt that it is safe.
Consequently, there are over 1,000 listed chemicals used in the production of food in the USA that is banned in Europe. Therefore, most food produced in the USA is banned from import into Europe; the most famous example being ‘American Apples’:-
Europe BANS Cancer-Causing American Apples: https://youtu.be/oEh1IbOKRBo
Also in Europe, apart from the health aspects of eating food which have been produced using chemicals, there is the Environmental concerns of using chemical in artificial fertilisers, and the harm pesticides does to the wildlife.
Therefore, from the European perspective, organically grown crops is not only kinder to the environment and wildlife, but is also considered healthier for human consumption.
I’m almost self-sufficient in home grown organic vegetables; apart from potatoes I grow enough vegetable in our back garden to feed our family 12 months of the year. In growing the vegetables I don’t use any artificial fertilisers or pesticides specifically for the reasons that it doesn’t harm the environment or wildlife, and we can be sure that what we eat is healthy.
Thanks for the clarification Peterstreep; nice to hear from someone residing in sunny Spain.
Yes the action being taken to combat Climate Change was perhaps a little slow in getting off the ground; but in terms of ‘world cooperation’ I think it’s a remarkable achievement that we don’t see often enough. Although if you see the pace as which Renewable Energy is being rolled out in China and across Europe (particularly in countries like Scotland, Germany and Denmark) then it is impressive. It has meant a big shakeup in our culture in many ways, but all for the better. For example, Bristol, where I live (along with a growing number of local governments across the UK) now have a zero waste to landfill policy; all the domestic waste collected from our homes by the local government gets recycled or reused in some way e.g. our sewage is biodegraded to produce electricity and anything that can’t be recycled is either composited to produce organic fertiliser for agriculture or burnt to produce electricity.
The other big change that’s on its way in Britain is the phasing out of fossil fuel cars within the next couple of decades e.g. a ban on their sale by 2030 and a ban on their use by 2040. In preparation for this the British Government has paved the way to ensure the infrastructure necessary for charge points for electric cars will be rolled out to keep ahead of demand. Even SHELL (a UK Oil Company) is now installing charge points for electric cars on the forecourts of their Petrol Stations (Gas Stations in American).
In the UK we don’t have a tax on solar energy; quite the reverse e.g. any surplus energy you don’t use is sold back to your energy supplier e.g. they pay you for what you don’t use; so since 2010 (when the scheme was introduced) home owners who have installed solar panels have got all their money back (for the cost of the initial installation) within 10 years.
However, we do have a ‘green tax’ of 8% on our energy bills which the Government has used for funding various ‘Green Energy’ projects e.g. government grants for loft and wall insulation, free replacement of central heating boilers that are more than 10 years old, and even free double glazing for old houses that may not have been doubled glazed etc.
In Britain we don’t have the problem of large Gas Companies discouraging Governments from promoting Renewable Energy. We have a different set-up in the UK, which is a bit weird, but it works. Namely the system falls into four groups; the energy producer, the energy distributor, the energy supplier and the consumer.
The Energy Producer can be any Private Company, or individual e.g. people who have solar panels on their roof, and power stations etc.
The Energy Distributer is the ‘National Grid’.
The Energy Supplier is any Private Company or Co-operative who install the electric and gas meter in your home and who you pay your bill too.
The Consumer is obviously the Customer.
The National Grid plays a pivotal role in that they buy from the ‘Producers’ on demand e.g. when needed, and they buy the cheapest electricity first e.g. wind and solar, and will only buy electricity from the one remaining coal power station left in the UK as a last result (the most expensive). The National Grid will also lay any new underground cables or pylons as necessary to link up to new energy sources as they become available e.g. new windfarms.
A glimpse at how the National Grid handles electricity demand in the UK (during peak power demand):- https://youtu.be/slDAvewWfrA
Then the Supplier buys its electricity from the National Grid (as needed) and sell it to the Consumer; a paper exercise as it doesn’t matter who you sign up to as your Supplier, it’s all the same cables that are used.
Currently I use Bristol Energy as my Supplier because it’s a non-profit making co-operative run by the Local (Socialist) Government; hence no profits are creamed off to shareholders, making the electricity and gas bill significantly cheaper.
Actually, Spain does sell electricity from its solar farms to not just France, but also Britain; when needed. It’s all part of a European wide scheme called the ‘Energy Union’ e.g. each National Grid is now linked to its neighbours National Grids so that surplus electricity can be exported to where it’s needed. And currently plans are being finalised to build an ‘artificial island’ at Dogger Bank (an area of shallow sea between Britain and Norway, to install an array of solar and windfarms, and when it becomes operational (by 2050) it will supply enough electricity across Northern Europe to meet the needs of 80 million homes.
Finally, I do fully agree with you that meat production does contribute as much to ‘Climate Change’ as does burning fossil fuels; if not more. I am fully aware of the problem, but getting meat eaters to change their habits is a tough nut to crack. The best we can hope for is to persuade; but that’s easier said than done. I am a vegetarian myself; have been all my adult life.
The good news is that there is some progress in the UK. Up to about 11% of the UK population are vegetarian or vegan to some degree or another. Vegetarianism started to increase in the UK after the 2nd World War (rationing); although it didn’t start to become really popular until the 1980s. However, since 2009 two new groups have emerged in the UK, ‘meat-reducers’ and ‘meat-avoider’; these are people who eat less meat and avoid eating meat for either health reasons and or because of concerns of ‘Climate Change’. Surveys have identified that about 23% of the British population are ‘meat-reducers’ e.g. they eat less meat, and 10% of the population are ‘meat avoiders’. Although, in the UK about 20% of the population still eat meat daily; but it is a step in the right direction.
I did note in further comments you made that you are a bit hazy as to why meat production is so bad for the environment. It is a subject that I do have a keen interest in, so perhaps I can throw some light on the issue for you!
There are two main issues. Firstly you need significantly more land to raise cattle to eat than is needed to grow vegetables for eating.
The second, and more pressing issue, is that cattle ‘fart’ methane, which currently contributes 15% to the annual Global Greenhouse Gas Emissions; and to make matters worse, methane is 28 times more potent in trapping heat in the atmosphere than carbon dioxide. The good news is that methane naturally breaks down in the atmosphere to harmless gases in just 9.6 years so it doesn’t have a long term build-up effect on Climate Change; although in the short term, when we’re trying to reduce the levels of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere it doesn’t help. The bigger (long term) concern is Carbon Dioxide, where it takes up to 200 years for just 80% of it to dissipate into the oceans and for the remaining 20% to take thousands of years to disperse through slower processes e.g. finding its way back to the soil through plant absorption etc. So the long term build-up effect of too much carbon dioxide in the atmosphere can be catastrophic; and the more carbon dioxide we add to the atmosphere the harder it is for the oceans to absorb the surplus. Also, large scale deforestation doesn’t help as trees do play a role in absorbing carbon dioxide from the atmosphere e.g. the Amazon Jungle.
Thanks for your clarifying Nathanville, I said it a bit more simplistic. But yes, the bottom line is that the production of meat and dairy products cost too much and is highly effecting the environment. (even without addressing animal cruelty.)
It's great to hear that you are optimistic about the efforts taken to fight climate change. I have my doubts though.
As there is still an old fashioned mindset that the economy always has to grow. And with this growth nature will shrink.
It is true that more and more companies see the benefits of recycling and a closed system economy. I think we have to get more to this Circular Economy and away from expanding one.
It's great to see that more and more cooperation and companies find a way to make sustainability profitable. And business have to lead the way. They can always quicker adept than governments. Except if you have a government that's still acting with an old school business model.
To tackle climate change is a difficult thing as it touches economics, social structures and the way men/women are interacting with nature.
We as a western society have lost contact with nature. This thanks to Christianity, Islam and Judaism who separated man from nature and put us above it. This attitude is deeply rooted in Western civilisation and should be rewritten.
When we see ourselves as a part of nature, much of the abuse of the environment would not happen.
The Gaia theory of Lovelock was laughed at 20 years ago, but more and more scientists look at his theories more seriously.
This mentality change is perhaps the most difficult step in fighting climate change. As climate change can not be beaten by a quick fix.
Yes, Religion are more concern about war and sex than they are about the natural environment.
It's a matter on how far and fast we can change or we could go extinct, Wail the earth still continue, is at least one optimistic thought.
A most interesting reply peterstreep: I’ve hadn’t heard of the Gaia Theory by Lovelock, but on reading about it on Wikipedia, on a superficial level I certainly can see it’s a good hypothesis for enclosed eco-systems such as the Earth itself, and on a smaller scale, biospheres; and closer to home the eco-system in our wildlife pond in our back garden. As regards the ‘fine’ details (which seem to have much good merit) I’ll leave that up to the scientists to continue to debate in their ‘peers review’ process.
I don’t know if you’ve heard of the Eden Project, in Cornwall, England. Back in 1999 two guys set up an ‘Educational Charity’ and got enough backing from private funding to build two huge Biospheres in an old disused ‘China Clay Pit’ in Cornwall.
The Eden Project opened to the Public in 2001, and attracts over 1 million visitors a year. The larger of the two biospheres is the largest ‘Tropical Rain Forest’ in captivity; while the smaller biosphere is a self-contained eco system emulating a ‘Mediterranean Environment’, very much like Spain’s environment. We had a week’s holiday in Cornwall this year, specifically so that we could visit the Eden Project:-
Eden Project (an overview): https://youtu.be/f8unx8-pZxg
As regards the wildlife in our back garden; we grow all our own vegetables (except potatoes), and some fruit, in our back garden organically; so that we are self-sufficient in vegetables 12 months of the year (except for the potatoes). My philosophy in growing the vegetables is to ‘work with nature’ rather than ‘against it’, so I don’t use any artificial fertilisers or pesticides (its 100% organic); and the wildlife pond is an integral part of the system e.g. the frogs and newts living in the pond help to keep the pests in balance. I built the wildlife pond about 18 years ago, and within the first month frogs populated it, and the following year it was also colonised by newts. Living in a city I wasn’t expecting the newts, but wherever they were before, they didn’t take long to find our pond. And being a wildlife pond e.g. no fish, it maintains itself in its own natural eco-system that keeps the pond healthy and the water clear.
Your comment “we as a western society have lost contact with nature”. I certainly get that impression when corresponding with Americans. However, many British people do still feel close to nature. The phrase "green and pleasant land" has become a common term that we Brits identify ourselves with because of our English landscape. This phrase is part of the poem “And did those feet in ancient time” by William Blake (1757 – 1827). Today the poem best known as the hymn ‘Jerusalem’ to music written by Sir Hubert Parry in 1916, and has become the ‘unofficial’ national anthem of England; which is ironic in that England is one of the least religious countries in the world e.g. only 33% of British people are religious; with 63% not being religious.
Also, since the 2nd world war, gardening has become a major past time in the UK
As well as our cities and towns being surrounded by countryside (the Government’s Green Belt Policy), and huge swathes of greenspace within built up areas (also Government Policy dating back to after the 2nd world war); there are countless swathes of protected land across the whole of the UK e.g. 15 National Parks, Nature Reserves and AONBs (Areas of Outstanding Beauty). Like National Parks, nature reserves, wildlife wetlands (and numerous other types of protected land) AONBs is protected land to preserve the natural beauty of the Area. 27% of Cornwall alone is an AONB.
Therefore, most British people certainly are aware of nature and do feel close to it.
Jerusalem (The unofficial National Anthem of England): https://youtu.be/MKRHWT6xdEU
The ‘optimism’ I have is a British thing that stems from the 2nd world war; and which has now become part of the British character. Like the rest of Europe, Britain suffered badly from Hitler’s consistent bombing raids over our cities, and all the destruction it caused.
At the outbreak of war we were ill prepared, Neville Chamberlain (the British Prime Minister at the time), rather than arming for war tried to negotiate a peace agreement with Hitler through appeasement. It didn’t work, and we ended up being un-prepared when we declared war on Hitler in 1939. Consequently, when Hitler bombed our infrastructure (factories, docks, airfields) and our cities, and blockaded the shipping, Britain was close to collapse. But the innate British ‘Resolve’ e.g. ‘war time spirit’ ‘stiff upper lip’ etc., helped to keep the British People calm and collective through the adversity, and in the face of the atrocity the British People remained optimistic. When our backs are to the wall (cornered) we British (who are normally quiet and reserved most of the time) will not cower, but will stand our ground against all odds.
Bristol Blitz 1940 (The Centre of the City Destroyed) WWII: https://youtu.be/vIVaXQu5LUI
We've got a vegetable garden too. That's why we moved from Amsterdam to the rural side of Spain. To start a more self sustaining life.
And yes we've got a pond too. ( I needed mortar and chisel to get 50cm deep...)
I heard about the Eden Project and it really sounds interesting. Maybe me and my wife (who is a Londoner) could visit the place some day.
The UK definately is on the forefront of vegetarianism. Holland is walking 5 years behind and Spain 10. Over here the famous Mediterranean diet has become pork and white bread.
I'm an optimist as well (except for climate change), I don't know if optimism is cultural bound, but it surely has it's influence. I always think that the weather has a huge impact on how people behave. But it's always tricky to talk with generalisations.
Every country has it's history and yes WWII played an important role in how the countries and it's people developed afterwards.
Holland was occupied as you know, and this gave them a different perspective towards fascism. Rotterdam was, as a strategic harbour bombed too. My grandfather, being Jewish, was taken away at the end of the war, but before he could be deported, escaped with a friend. These are different stories then I've heard from my wife's mother who lived in London at the time.
Spain has a different story to tell altogether with the dictatorship of Franco. Which was supported by the west after the war as the west was to afraid for socialism at that time.
The isolation of Franco's politics held Spain back for many years. It exploded in the 80's after Franco's death, but it's just a recent development that Spain became more democratic with 4 parties (two left wing and two right wing) instead of two. To me a two party system is not democratic, you don't have a real choice, just yes or no. With the biggest party ruling and the smallest in the opposition.
But maybe that's Dutch thinking as I'm used to 10 parties or more. (at the moment there are 13 parties in parliament, with a ruling coalition of 4 parties.)
There is a growing optimism in Spain but at the same time fascism is coming out of the closet. The nationalism tendencies you see all over Europe is starting in Spain too. This extreme right wing nationalism is frightening. (I was recently on a fair promoting a cultural centre that I run when an extreme right wing demonstration started behind my back, calling Franco's name and saluting. pretty frightening..)
The rise of extreme nationalism (supported by President Trump with his America first slogan and the Brexit mentality) is a bad thing. Especially now we as a world have to work together to beat climate change, pollution and the destruction of many natural wonders like the Amazon and the coral riffs. Just to mention a few. Sadly enough parties who focus on xenophobia, nationalism and religious differences do normally not care about environmental issues.
Thanks for your comprehensive feedback peterstreep. I totally agree, a two party system isn’t democratic; and like you (living in Britain) I’m used to a multiparty system; although I suspect that most people outside of the UK are not aware that Britain is a multiparty system because it’s only the two main Political Parties that gets most of international publicity most of the time.
In the UK Parliament there are a total of 650 seats, so for any party to have overall majority they need to win 326 seats.
Currently the Conservative is a ‘minority’ Government with 315 seats, being propped up (kept in power) by the DUP (Democratic Unionist Party) with their 10 MPs. So even with the 10 DUP MPs, the Conservative Government still don’t have an overall majority and are struggling to stay in power.
At the moment there are 8 political parties in the UK Parliament, plus 8 Independent MPs:
• The Conservatives and DUP (with 325 seats between them) are the only two right wing parties.
• The 5 (left wing) Socialist Parties have 304 of the seats between them; and
• The Liberal Democrats (a Centralist Party) has 10 of the seats.
Prior to the 2nd world war it was always the Conservatives (right wing) or the Liberal Democrats (Centralists); but in the 1945 General Election the Labour Party shocked everyone with their massive landslide victory, pushing the Liberals into third place; and Labour has remained the main opposition to the Conservatives ever since. Albeit in the late 1970s and from 2010 to 2015 the Liberals held the balance of power e.g. the Liberals supported a minority Labour Government in the 1970s and formed a coalition with the Conservative Minority Government between 2010 and 2015.
At the moment the 3rd largest political party in the UK Parliament is the SNP (Scottish National Party), the SNP, along with Labour, Sinn Fein, Plaid Cymru and the Green Partly all being left wing socialist parties.
Yes the rise of extreme right wing nationalism sweeping across Europe and in America is frightening; but fortunately after its rise in British Politics from 2010 e.g. UKIP, since the 2017 General Election popular support for extreme nationalism in Britain has evaporated.
Even though UKIP only ever had 1 seat in Parliament, it was the Conservative’s Government’s ‘fear’ of UKIP that led the Conservative Government to make the stupid mistake of running the BREXIT Referendum as a way to appease UKIP voters e.g. the Conservative’s fear of losing votes (and potentially seats) to UKIP in the next General Election. UKIP’s popularity rose from 3.1% in 2010 to 12.6% in 2015; which evaporated in 2017 when they only got 1.8% of the share of the votes (and lost their only seat in Parliament).
Currently there are only 30 Conservative MPs and the DUP Party (of 10 MPs) who are extreme right wing nationalist (total 40 elected MPs). Unfortunately it’s the 30 extreme nationalists in the Conservative Party who are holding the Government (Theresa May) to ransom by trying to force through a hard Brexit, with a threat of bringing down the Government if they don’t get their way. While at the same time a similar number of Conservative MPs on the left of the Party (who are pro EU) are threatening to split the party (and cause its collapse) if the Government (Theresa May) doesn’t negotiate a ‘Soft Brexit’ with the EU.
Under this backdrop, since 2017 there’s been a massive resurgence in popular support for the extreme left wing Socialist Policies of the Labour Party under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn. Support for Labours Socialist Policies has now become so popular with the voting public that the Conservatives have resigned themselves to the very real prospect of losing the next General Election to Labour.
On a lighter note, I was so proud when London elected a Muslim Labour Mayor in 2015; for me it does give one hope for the future.
As someone who believes in multiparty systems, you may find this video of some interest:
Sadiq Khan elected new Mayor of London in 2015 (Results and Inaugural Speech): https://youtu.be/ChY4nooWgGs
"In the UK we don’t have a tax on solar energy; quite the reverse e.g. any surplus energy you don’t use is sold back to your energy supplier e.g. they pay you for what you don’t use; so since 2010 (when the scheme was introduced) home owners who have installed solar panels have got all their money back (for the cost of the initial installation) within 10 years."
The US does this, too. And it sounds like the same process, pretty much, which results in the other consumers paying the cost of solar cells in higher electric bills. Where I am we've seen our bills go up because the local power company is forced to buy excess power at rates considerably higher than they can produce it or buy it elsewhere. Although the US has not set that price so high that solar cells pay for themselves in ANY amount of time, it is higher than the hydro we have otherwise.
So granny, sitting in a cold home, turns the thermostat down further because she has to help her neighbor put in solar cells.
Yep, wilderness, we’ve discussed this very point in great detail previously, and at the time (after a lengthy debate) I did come to respect your views for the reasons you so clearly stated last time.
Although I respect your views on this matter, I don’t’ fully agree with them, because as a European my values and priorities are different to the average American e.g. we don’t rate money as highly as Americans; other issues such as protecting the environment, and our sense of wellbeing, are far more important to us.
Therefore, if it means paying a little extra on our fuel bills (in the short term) to help save the planet then (as a European) I’m all for it. And it is in the short term because in 2016 the cost of producing electricity from wind power in the UK became cheaper than electricity produced from coal; and since then, wind has become the cheapest form of electricity in the UK. Also, just last month (September 2018), in spite of small producers being paid for producing electricity for the National Grid e.g. homeowners with solar panels on their roofs, electricity produced from solar energy has now become the 2nd cheapest form of electricity in the UK; with electricity produced from fossil fuels and nuclear power now being more expensive in the UK than Renewable Energy.
Granted, electricity in the UK is more expensive than electricity in America, and it always has been ever since the Conservative Government privatised it back in the 1980s; which is why Labour is intent on re-nationalising the industry (bring it back under State Ownership and State Control) when the Labour Party next get back into power. For clarity, that’s not so say the Labour Party want to State Own the Producers, because ‘Private Enterprise’ in ‘Research and Development’ of cheap clean electricity in the UK is competitive and thriving; and big business. That part of the Industry Labour is intent on re-nationalising are the ‘Suppliers’; the Private Companies that rip people off for big profits, for doing nothing other than sell electricity piped from the National Grid to the home. In fact the greed of the electricity ‘Suppliers’ had got so bad that even the Conservative Government has finally (albeit begrudgingly) stepped in to ‘cap’ what these Companies can charge Consumers; which will save the average household about 7% on their energy bill.
I’ll not be affected because I’m already paying for cheaper electricity because I switched from my old electricity supplier to Bristol Energy last year. Bristol Energy is a non-profit co-operative set up just a few years ago by Bristol City Council (Local Socialist Government). The co-operative, rather than cream off the profits for the benefit of shareholders, re-invests a share of the profits in local ‘Green Projects’ to further increase production of ‘Renewable Energy’ e.g. there recent partnership with Bristol Sewage Works to turn sewage into Renewable electricity and Biogas. Then any surplus profit made by Bristol Energy is fed back to the Consumer in the form of Cheaper Utility Bills; consequently I am now paying significantly less for my electricity and gas than I was a year ago, before I switched to Bristol Energy.
Bristol Energy (and what it stands for): https://youtu.be/uoxY5jut28A
Switch to Bristol Energy: https://youtu.be/wABH3zu4Zqk
Besides, if Private Companies can make a profit from investing in and producing electricity to sell to the National Grid for onward resell to the ‘Suppliers’ who then sell it to the homeowner, why shouldn’t home owners also make money from selling surplus electricity they produce from their solar panels to the National Grid. Albeit, now that in the UK the price of buying solar panels has dramatically fallen, and the solar panels are far more efficient at producing electricity, it has now become cost effective for homeowners to install solar panels without the incentive of earning extra money from selling any surplus electricity they produce to the National Grid. So as from next year ‘New Contracts’ for home owners will be less lucrative in monetary terms; although in real terms, getting solar panels is still an attractive proposition because they are now so much cheaper to buy and far more efficient, so it stills pays for itself within 10 years from all the free electricity it generates during daylight hours.
After you mention it, I do remember that interesting conversation.
But maybe a new thought - are your solar homes self sufficient or do they still require a backup in that the grid system must be there for times when there is no wind, no light, etc? If so, are they paying their "fair share" of maintaining that capacity or freeloading off of others that are paying the lions share of it? A different thing than paying for actual power received, but it still must be done?
I know you were asking Nathanville but just to add an other point.
We are living completely off the grid. The only backup we have is a generator when we have a week full of clouds, which happens in the winter sometimes. Then we have to charge the batteries with the generator.
This obviously is different then a lot of people have in the city where they pump the solar energy back into the grid. This system does not really exist in Spain. As the country is not really solar energy friendly.
So, no hair dries, microwaves or electric grill for us.
In general this works perfect as where we live is enough sun. So no monthly energy bills. The only bill we paid is when we set up the system 12 years ago when we bought the house. (so it's a part of the mortgage.) But as we live on the countryside, we had no other choice then to generate our own electricity. But that's fine, we knew this when we bought the house.. We have a system now that practically runs all our needs.
Oh, it is absolutely possible to live off the grid! One man not too far from me died recently (of old age); he had been off the grid for decades. COMPLETELY off the grid; no roads, no stores, no power, no water, etc. A hermit far into the mountains. I once knew another similar case where the caretaker of mountain reservoirs had to hike miles to find a road and in winter could never get out even with a horse. My own great grandparents were the only family in a valley 50 miles from me; obviously had no grid of any kind and "town" was a 3 day trip by wagon.
It's all about what one is willing to give up in exchange. TANSTAAFL - There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch.
But you haven't replaced even batteries in 12 years? No maintenance or repairs outside of personal labor? And I'm told solar cells have lost considerable of their ability to produce electricity in only 10 years. Something like 20% as I recall, but could be mistaken.
And of course "no monthly energy bills" means no natural gas, no kerosene, no gasoline, no propane, no diesel fuel, etc. Or did you just mean "no electricity bill"?
The situation of the old man you are talking about, with all respect, is different today. (talking about developed countries)
Today you have the internet, which makes a it a completely different ballgame.
I have not replaced the batteries for 12 years, and with good maintenance they will run for many more years. Solar batteries are not the same as car batteries which you have to replace every 4-5 years..
Of course I have to fill up the batteries regularly with distilled water but that's basically it. The solar cells are fine. And nowadays the solar cells are better then 10 years ago, and cheaper too.
Of course I meant "electricity bill" as we we are talking about solar energy. Sorry for the misinterpretation it could have caused.
You ask about what one is willing to exchange. Well for everybody this is different. As I compare my life now and the life I lived in Amsterdam, there are huge differences,
My living standard is higher. although I earn less money. As my monthly bill is much lower. It's a matter of what you earn and what you spent.
Being out of the rat race I live a stress free life.
As we have our own vegetable garden, the food we eat is far more healthier and cheaper then the stuff in the supermarkets. I have more breathing space then in the city, work more outdoors as the climate is better and have more time to do the things I really want to do in life.
I'm not a big fan off the phrase "There Ain't No Such Thing As A Free Lunch." as it suggests that everything you do, you do to gain something. Everything is seen as a win or loose situation. It's a bit cynical to me.
There are a lot of things for free. Love, beauty, nature, the sunset, consolation, a helping hand...(just to name a few) Probably the most important things in life are for free.
I concur with peterstreep that the ‘best things in life are free’. As a European I put more ‘value’ on the ‘Quality’ of life than on ‘money’.
Although I live in a city, when I’m at my computer in our home/office, and I look out of the window, all I can see are trees and the sky, and in late afternoon the sun; and it does give a sense of ‘wellbeing’.
When we were on holiday in the Yorkshire Dales a few years ago, two wonderful places we visited; that were ‘Free’ were:-
1. The ‘St Ives Country Estate’ (a 500 acre Country Park, which is now a ‘Nature Reserve’) that’s open to the public with ‘Free’ Entry and Free Parking and an excellent café with cheap but high quality food and friendly staff.
Nature Reserve at St Ives Country Estate in West Yorkshire, England: https://youtu.be/25u0rgB7jMo
2. Aysgarth Falls, within the Yorkshire Dales National Park (spectacular waterfalls and river), also Free Entry and Free Parking, and an excellent café with inexpensive but high quality food. Most of the food being sourced from local suppliers, including small cottage industries from the surrounding villages’ e.g. homemade jams, bread and cakes etc., all made from wheat and fruits etc., grown and produced locally.
Aysgarth Falls, West Yorkshire, England: https://youtu.be/w5_H5Og2ytc
Also, Like peterstreep, my wife and I live a stress free life (having taken early retirement at 55) and with Bristol being surrounded by countryside (because of the Greenbelt policy) we’re never far from the wide open spaces, which has easy access because of the ancient rights of ‘Public Rights of Way’ under Medieval Common Law, that was enshrined in an Act of Parliament by the Labour Government in 2000 e.g. peoples legal right to use any public path that appears on any historic map, even if that path crosses ‘private land’.
Hiking England's Public Footpaths (An American video Production):- https://youtu.be/mdOpg7sZB4g
I was interested in your comment peterstreep about having to live off grid in the countryside; is this common in Spain e.g. in even the most remotest parts of the UK every effort is made by National Grid to help ensure everyone who wants to be is connected to the National Grid; which most people in the UK do want.
Wasdale Head is a remote village in North West England of just 11 homes (population of about 26 people). The village was first connected to mains electricity in 1977. This video below is how the village was reconnected to the National Grid a few years ago when the original link failed; which turned out to be a challenging and expensive exercise (as explained in the video); all paid for ‘not by the residents’ but by ‘Electricity North West’ (National Grid) as part of their legal obligation:-
Restoring mains electricity supply to remote Cumbrian village: https://youtu.be/idd2PDzppp0
In answer to your question wilderness: In the UK, having solar panels installed on your roof is not an alternative to the National Grid; it’s in an addition to it. So you still buy electricity from the National Grid when you need it, and pay the same price as everyone else for what you use from the Grid.
Put in simple terms:-
• If on a sunny day your solar panels are producing more electricity than you need, then the surplus is piped from your home to the National Grid, and credited to your Supplier who then has to pay you for it.
• If you are using more electricity than your solar panels are generating at that time e.g. it’s a dull day and you’ve got loads of heavy appliance on; then what you generate is free, and you just pay for the extra that you need from your Energy Supplier at the standard rate that everyone else pays.
• Then obviously at night, when your solar panels are not producing any electricity, 100% of the electricity you use is from the National Grid, and you pay your Energy Supplier the standard rate (for what you use) that everyone else pays.
An alternative configuration, which has only been available on the UK market for just the last three years, is the large storage batteries to be used in conjunction with solar panels (storage capacity of 13.5 kWh and output of 5kW). But at just under $6,000 including installation the battery is a little pricy for most people, and although it may pay for itself over the 10 years (at current prices) it doesn’t work out any cheaper than by not having the battery. However, they are gaining in popularity, and it is anticipated that (as with wind and solar power) the price of these batteries will fall overtime, making them more of an incentive to buy.
And for clarity, even this arrangement isn’t off grid e.g. once the battery is fully charged any surplus electricity the solar panels produce is sold to the National Grid, and on occasions when you need additional electricity (which is predominately over the winter months), then you buy what you need from the National Grid via your Energy Supplier at the standard price that your Energy Supplier charges it customers.
Powerwall captures the power of the sun, day and night: https://youtu.be/koRS2G5o3ek
That's about the same way ours works here, too. Very (very) few people are truly "off the grid", and excess power generation by a homeowner (or business) is sold back to the power company at regulated rates. "Regulated" as in enough to cover the cost, which is always greater than the power company can do with it's large, efficient (and often hydro) power plants.
Interesting that batteries are coming on, and I hear they might be in Australia as well. It's also interesting that that 13.5KwH is just larger than the battery in my car! (Love that car - I often get 3,000 miles out of an 8 gallon tank of gas, and by switching to "time of day" fee schedule for electricity, power doesn't cost me any more than before we had the car. But now the state is charging me $100 per year extra tax because I don't burn enough gasoline. )
But it wouldn't do me a bit of good. My wintertime usage is as much as 116 KwH per day and the average over the year is somewhere around half that. When the "experts" (read: salesmen with computer programs) came out they couldn't even provide solar cells enough to cover average days, let alone enough to provide needed power PLUS charge the battery with even more than was being used. And we won't even mention a month with snow covered roof or the winter time inversions with no sun for week after week after week!
What you say in your first paragraph wilderness was true in Britain until 2016 (when Renewable Energy started to become cheaper than energy from fossil fuel). In the UK in 2016 Electricity from wind Turbines became cheaper than electricity from coal powered fire stations); and is now the cheapest form of electricity. Solar Energy became the 2nd cheapest last month. Therefore wind and solar Energy in the UK is now cheaper to produce than electricity from the traditional big power stations such as coal, gas and nuclear power; with coal being the most expensive in the UK; our last remaining coal station which now only supplies less than 2% of the total energy in the UK (and falling rapidly) is due to close in 2025.
As solar energy is now economically viable to the home owners in the UK (because of falling prices in manufacture, installation and greater efficiency of the solar panels) without the need for the incentive of high Government ‘Regulated’ rates for surplus electricity sold to the National Grid, the Government is changing the scheme ‘for new contracts’ to match market forces as from the 1st April 2019. Germany, who is well advanced of the UK for rolling out solar panels to homeowners, has already taken this approach.
I’m intrigued in how much electricity you use. Last year I only used 8,396 kWh (average of 23 Kwh per day); which is less than half the electricity you use. And it’s not as if we make any great effort to reduce our energy usage e.g. have all our mod cons like everyone else, although by UK standards we are a heavy user e.g. we use more electricity than the national average, I think mainly because we are still using our old stock of less energy efficient light bulbs whereas most people are now using LED lighting, and our son uses a lot of equipment for his photography business.
Albeit we do use gas during the winter months for heating, but that usage has dropped off significantly in recent years due to Global Warming e.g. ten years ago we used to have the heating on from mid-September until mid-April the following year, and quite often up high. In the past few years, because of warmer winters, we don’t need any heating until late October and then turning it off by late March; and sometimes on warm winter days we use little or no heating.
Climate change is a topic everybody should think about and care about.
The UN report about the dangers we face are serious.
https://www.theguardian.com/environment … -un-report
Anybody denying climate change or even trivializing is acting against the well being of the next generation.
The criminal act of the president of the US to deny climate change and acting upon his words to support coal and promote fossil fuels is only literally putting oil on the wild fires.
This I call a criminal act. Trump yelled the words, lock her up. Al demagogues use words like these. But often the person who is pointing the finger does so as a diversion of his own wrong doings.
But people who act against the well being of the human race are in my point of view criminals.
Trump is not alone in neglecting the climate change challenge. The Dutch government is also far more interested in the economy money that goes around in businesses then the well being of it's population and is still far behind the promises it made during the Paris agreement.
In Holland, just like the US it looks as if the economy is doing great. But is it really. Have the wages gone up? Have the monthly costs gone down? Is education for the kids become cheaper? Has the insurance gone down? Do you have more free time? Do you have a more care-free feeling?
Probably most of the answers will be no. As politicians see the economy as a money thing. Well being is not a state that's taken into account.
The fact that the economy is doing great relates to the stocks and shares, the big companies who are profiting from the times of big tax cuts. (did you have a big tax cut?) - This is not real life, it's just figures. Juggling with numbers. What really counts is well being, And this includes caring for the environment.
People do think Trump is the Champion of the environment,?
Did not know UK is 97℅ rural. That's better than concrete jungles and rivers of open sewage. Less than 1/3 of Hong Kong is rural.
When I describe the greatest dangers in the world today is the natural environment and Corperationism on this site. They treat me or ignore me like I am the crazy one. This lie is so successful, billions people believe in it. They simply accepted “wisdom” and not even questioned. I get more into this" on the thread:The benefit of the Constitution:
I've been told I'm hateful or against America. I'm a world citizen, that won't work. I may bash large corporatism and their secret societies, yet many of them here, are bashing capitalism or socialism? Kinda of counter productive towards co- operation, kinder and sharing world upon something better like non- label individualism is rarely talked about.
I Get dumped from Christians women because I can't be saved or dumped by Quebec re because I have a British (empire) last name.
Well my friend, if we stick to individualism and unregulated free market, voluntarily exchange, and entrepreneurship. We will achieve our own gross national product.... happiness.
I typed 97% of the UK is rural in error, I should have typed 93%; although, 54% of urban areas in the UK are not built on e.g. greenspaces within the urban landscape, such as parklands, back gardens, rivers and canals etc. So when all this is added up only 2.27% of the UK is actually built on, which is close to the 97% I first quoted.
The misconception most city dwellers get is that day and night all they see is the urban environment around them, so they get a false perception that a large percentage of the landscape is urban. Granted, there are parts of the world like Hong Kong, where land is in short supply, and mostly built on; but Britain isn’t unique for its open space; in large parts of the world, like America and Canada, the land is far vaster, and the population is far less dense than the UK.
Yet when I correspond with Americans they don’t see it that way; they only see overcrowding and a shortage of land. I think part of the Americans problem with their perception of the lack of open space is their love of big houses which are well spread out, massively wide roads, and massively tall buildings that reach for the clouds, and the uncontrolled urban sprawl (the concrete jungle).
In contrast, with the UK’s Greenbelt Policy, and Government policy since the late 1940s that everyone living within an urban environment should be within a short walking distance of ‘green space’ e.g. parks and woodland (because of the benefits they have on wellbeing), along with the British People’s dislike of living in tall buildings, Britain’s are more aware of the surrounding countryside.
Few people (who haven’t visited London) would find it hard to credit that over 40% of London is actually green space; this short video explains the benefits of Green spaces in London in greater detail:
Green Spaces: The Benefits for London: https://youtu.be/Y332SeVd-F0
At the bottom is a map which shows the urban areas in black. Also, this article explains in more detail: https://www.bbc.co.uk/news/uk-18623096
I know what you mean about the ‘Fake News’ being spread about the environment, and I to find many Americans blindly believe it. However, fortunately it’s not billions, most of the rest of the world (outside of America) are more aware of the environmental issues; especially Europeans.
Yep, as I European, I strongly agree with you in respect of individualism and entrepreneurship; two factors that are strongly promoted within a diverse Europe.
However, we may have slightly different views on ‘unregulated free markets’ and ‘voluntary exchange’ in that the European perspective in these areas is from a different angle to Americanism. Europe does strongly believe in ‘regulating’ markets, but not for greed and money, and to stifle fair competition like American Corporations, but to protect European citizens from unsafe products (health and safety).
Europe set very high Health and Safety, and ethical ‘Standards’ for products (goods and services) sold in the EU, whether it’s from the Internal market or imported. So in the past many Chinese Goods were banned from import into the EU because they didn’t meet those ‘Standards’, albeit, Chinese manufacturing has improved their ‘Standards’ significantly in recent years, so Imports from China on WTO terms is now rapidly on the rise; especially since the Trade war between Trump and China, instigated by Trump.
On the ethical side; wood (timber) sold within the EU (whether sourced internally or imported) is only permitted within the EU if it’s from a ‘Renewable Source’. So hardwoods from the Amazon rain forest is prohibited, while ‘certified’ cedar wood from Canada is freely available e.g. I purchased cedar wood from Canada a few years ago when I was building our conservatory.
Europe believes in Free Trade, and Trade Agreements e.g. the EU has negotiated Trade Agreements with over 50 countries around the world (over 25% of the world), including the CETA (Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement), a Free Trade Agreement with Canada.
However, after 7 long years of negotiations, the proposed Trade Agreement between the EU and the USA failed, for many reasons. The main concerns I had, and one of the reasons negotiations broke down, was Americans insistence that Europe accepted the import of American food containing toxins which are banned in Europe e.g. there are over 1,000 toxins banned in Europe which are added to American food as artificial colouring, flavouring and preservatives. The most commonly mentioned one being diphenylamine (DPA) added to American Apples so that they stay fresh for anything up to 18 months.
Europe BANS Cancer-Causing American Apples: https://youtu.be/oEh1IbOKRBo
In Europe, foods contain natural colourings, flavourings and preservatives; many foods in Europe doesn’t preserve for anywhere as long as it does in America, but its something you get used to; and from our viewpoint, it’s much healthier.
It seemed to me, on our short visit, that a great many UK residents grocery shop nearly every day. Contrast that with our experience; I shop once per month with a couple of returns for milk or eggs - things like that that will not keep well.
Perhaps because of small refrigerators or lots of small, specialized, grocery outlets? Or because nothing keeps well there?
Good to hear from you Wilderness.
We do our main shopping at least once a month, and then nip out once or twice a week for perishables e.g. bread, milk and fruit etc.
Eggs isn’t a problem because they will keep for a long time unrefrigerated in the UK e.g. in the USA eggs are washed during packaging which means they have to then be refrigerated to keep them fresh. While in Europe the eggs are not washed, so they can be stored un-refrigerated for just as long e.g. the protective coating isn’t washed off during the packaging on eggs sold in Europe. This coating seals the shell pores, prevents bacteria from getting inside the shell, and reduces moisture loss from the egg. Apparently, both methods of egg packaging are just as safe as each other; it’s just a cultural difference. Albeit I prefer the European method in that not having to keep the eggs refrigerated means there’s more space in the fridge for other things.
Yes, British Fridges are a lot smaller than American Fridges; albeit we’ve got two freezers (in our food store at the end of the garden), a large 10 cubic foot freezer for general use, and a small freezer of about 3.5 cubic feet for surplus crops from our garden so that we’re self-sufficient in organic home grown vegetables 12 months of the year (except for potatoes).
Yep, in the UK, most people live within a few minutes’ walk of a local food shop e.g. Corner Shop, High Street Shops and Village Shops etc. From where I live, there are two Corner Shops within about three minutes’ walk (one up the road and the other down the road); and they are convenient if you just want to nip out to get some milk or bread during the week.
And, also, as stated, a lot of the British food products these days (since manufacturers have stopped using artificial preservers) doesn’t preserve as well as American food; it’s something you get used to, and quite happy to live with, in the knowledge that it’s not packed with lots of chemicals.
And more recently (within the last few years), due to a sustained public campaign (Pressure Groups), manufacturers are slowly reducing the quantity of added salt in their products, and due to Government Legislation earlier this year e.g. the sugar tax, manufacturers are also now quite rapidly reducing the amount of added sugar to their products.
Lived in Brixton for a short wail. Everything they were using in this house I was living. Had coins for heat or water and so on. Led me to thinking how to think about conserving energy and natural resources. Wail in North America we are over spoiled with abundance.
Post War Prosperity in Britain didn’t emerge until the 1960s, and then under Thatcherism (Conservative Government of the 1980s) Margaret Thatcher tried to instil Americanism (including Consumerism and the throwaway Society) into the fabric of British Culture.
However, it didn’t last (thank goodness). It wasn’t the generation who suffered the austerity through the war and post war era, it was the children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren of that generation who learnt about the war from their parents, and from the history books (the British war time spirt), who having tasted consumerism didn’t like the ugly side of it e.g. greed and selfishness etc., and turned their backs on it; becoming more conscious of green issues and the environment etc.
It’s a combination of the Great Depression of the 1930s, the world war in the 1940s and the post war deprivation in Britain that lasted until the 1960s that has helped to formulate the characteristics and the distinct ‘British Humour’ of today’s modern Brits.
British Humour is based on Irony, Sarcasm, Deadpan, Wit, Banter, Self-deprecation, and Innuendos. Unlike American Humour which is too much in your face and too shallow, British humour is dry, subtle and negative (self-deprecation); much of which stems from the war years e.g. the endurance of Brits under constant destruction of our cities by German bombing raids. It’s also where our ‘British Resolve’ and ‘Stiff Upper Lip’ stems from e.g. keeping calm and Collective under Pressure. Unlike Americans, the Brits may be quiet spoken and polite, but when pushed too far we will push back e.g. the Mouse that Roared.
This video gives some insight into the British Humour:-
British Humour Explained: https://youtu.be/F5wz77P_C70
I do a little standup comedy. My humour would be more british where Canadains and Brits would get it more than Americans. When telling a joke I reach for a surface levels to the deeper taboos levels like in the story of the Wizard of Ox.
You could say I learn more from British for its richer diverse experience cultural background.
Conversely, (as previously stated) we do love the Canadian TV Series the ‘Murdoch Mysteries’ for its humour (so very much like the British humour) and was particularly delighted when the Canadian Producers decided to make one of their episodes in England, especially as they chose to film in Bristol (where I live). Bristol being a good choice in that there are a still a number of back streets in the city centre that survived the German bombing raids during the 2nd world war that to this day has retained its historic charm, which as you will know if you watch the series is appropriate as the TV Series is set in the late 19th and early 20 century.
One of the more famous of these old back streets in Bristol being ‘Christmas Steps’ built in the 17th century. This video (of two Americans exploring Bristol) starts at Christmas Steps, before they make their way to St. Nicholas Market: https://youtu.be/2mfUgU40hrI?t=1m47s
I like the British wit: American slapstick, for instance, leaves me cold. Much happier with the dry wit.
As you know, I don’t like American humor (too shallow for me); but we Brits do like A lot of the American TV Sci-Fi Series e.g. Star Trek, Stargate etc.
One of the very popular British TV comedy series, where we take the piss out of our own history, is the all-time great Blackadder series. Blackadder Goes Fourth (set in the 1st world war) takes great delight in ridiculing Field Marshal Douglas Haig, famously remembered for the 2 million British casualties under his command because of his insane insistence on sending his troops over the top of the trenches, just to be gunned down by the Germans.
Short clips from the TV Series (if you haven’t seen it):-
Blackadder Goes Forth: https://youtu.be/rblfKREj50o
And, this clip below is the final few minutes of the final episode; a very sombre ending to give ‘pause for thought’:-
Over The Top Blackadder Goes Fourth Final Scene: https://youtu.be/IglUmgYGxLM
Seems we're talking apples and oranges here (though perhaps not). A great many Americans have a freezer, though I thought they were not common in the UK.
But few Americans have a garden unless they farm - are gardens sufficient to make Brits self sufficient in veggies the norm, even in cities? I'm in suburbia, for instance, and there is but one garden, I think, in my subdivision of perhaps 100 homes. Lots of flowers and decorative plantings, but few edible plants.
Grocery outlets: we have, I think, 8 large grocery stores for a town of around 100,000, but very few small outlets. Lots of places to buy bread or milk, if you don't mind double the price, but few places where you could purchase a month's worth of groceries. I only know of a single butcher shop, for instance, and it specializes in large orders such as half a beef.
You pose some good questions.
They are common in the UK, but come in different shapes and sizes to suit the individual family or person.
An elderly person living on their own is only likely to have a fridge e.g. all fridges in the UK (unless a fridge freezer) has a small freezer compartment inside. The freezer compartments in fridges are tiny e.g. just big enough for a large tub of ice cream.
A lot of families will opt for a ‘fridge freezer’ because its space saving e.g. the top half is the fridge and the bottom half is the freezer; a ‘fridge freezer’ being the same width as a standard British fridge; 600 mm (2 feet) wide, but tall e.g. 6 feet high. A fridge freezer has two separate doors, the top door being the fridge and the bottom door being the freezer. For clarity fridges can either be worktop height (to fit under the kitchen worktop) or full height e.g. 5ft or 6ft.
Other people prefer to have their fridge and freezer under the kitchen worktop, in which case they’ll buy a small fridge and a small freezer (waist height) to fit next to each other under the kitchen worktop.
Larger families (especially with children) will often buy a secondary freezer for the garage (or garden shed if they don’t have a garage); which is usually a chest freezer e.g. the door is on the top rather than the front.
In our kitchen we have a ‘fridge freezer’, slightly wider than the standard British width of 600mm (2 feet), ours is about 30 inches wide and 6 feet tall. We bought it specifically to fit snuggly into an alcove in the kitchen e.g. to fit the space where the old (pre-war) coal fuelled kitchen range (cooker and oven) once occupied. And as I previously stated; we also have two chest freezers in our food store at the end of our garden, a large one and a small one. The frozen food we intend using during the week is transferred to our fridge freezer in the kitchen; and then when we do our monthly shopping we re-stock the large freezer in the shed as necessary, or when we see bargains e.g. a couple of weeks ago a local supermarket was selling off its surplus stock of bread that was within 24 hours of reaching its sell-by date for just 10p ($0.13), less than a 5th of its normal price; so my wife bought enough of the bread on offer to fill-up all the spare space in all our freezers.
Americans that I regularly correspond with have told me that Americans don’t generally grow their own vegetables.
Our back garden is 30 feet wide and 100 feet long; and our front garden is 30 feet wide and 20 feet long.
Most homes in the UK, even in the big cities, have back gardens; albeit, although we live in a city, our back garden is twice as big as the average city garden. The reason our garden is so big is that the house we live in is an ex-Council House built in the 1930s; at the time ‘Social Housing’ were given larger gardens than housing built by private developers. A Council House is ‘Social Housing’ built by Local Government to house the unemployed and low paid. In the early 1980s Margaret Thatcher (Conservative Government) changed the law to allow Council Tenants (who could afford it) to buy their Council House (at market value), with all the rent that they had paid up to that point being knocked off the price of the house. Consequently, over 50% of Council Housing is now privately owned. When we decided to move up the property ladder e.g. from a two bedroom terraced house to a three bedroom semi-detached, we opted to buy an ex-Council house because they were cheaper than other equivalent houses due to the stigma that was attached to ex-Council houses at the time; albeit that stigma has long since evaporated.
Gardening is a big thing in the UK, and most people grow some vegetables; it all stems back to the 2nd world war when food in Britain was in short supply. During the 2nd world war the Government encouraged people to become more self-sufficient by growing their own vegetables; it’s something that stuck and has ever since become deeply rooted in the British Culture.
In fact, growing vegetables is so popular in the UK that all Local Governments have a legal obligation to provide ‘Allotments’ for people who don’t have large back gardens. There are currently 330,000 allotments in the UK with a further 90,000 people on waiting lists for allotments. An Allotment is 300 square yards; more than sufficient land to feed a family (in vegetables) 12 months of the year.
In our old house we rented an Allotment from the Local Council (Local Government), but since we moved we don’t need one because our back garden is more than big enough to grow all the veg we need (except for potatoes).
In the UK Grocery Outlets are everywhere, even in villages there’s usually a village shop, and in big cities there are Grocery Outlets on almost every main road; so most people generally live within 5 minutes’ walk of somewhere where they can buy food.
Albeit, they do come in all different sizes, and the smaller (more conveniently located) ‘independent’ food shops tend to be more expensive than the big supermarkets.
The big Supermarkets (the big four) are very competitive and will locate their ‘Stores’ wherever there’s business e.g. in the centre of the city (city centre shopping), on large Retail Estates on the outskirts of the city, and as small shops on main roads dotted around the city to compete with the smaller ‘independent’ traders.
Most people do their monthly shopping with the big four supermarkets, but increasingly both Lidl and Aldi are becoming popular. Aldi and Lidl being just warehouses, rather than supermarkets e.g. they don’t stack their food on shelves but keep them in their transit crates on the floor, making their running costs cheaper so they can undercut the big supermarkets e.g. their food is significantly cheaper than supermarket food.
In the UK, the big four have been engaged in a ‘food war’ for years, each trying to undercut the other; so it’s easy to pick up bargains if you shop around. And you don’t have to leave the comfort of your own home to shop around either; a website called ‘mySupermarket’ compares the latest (up to the minute) prices for all food items in all the major supermarkets (including bargain offers). And through the ‘mySupermarket’ you can place your order with any of the supermarkets you wish and have it delivered to your door at a time convenient to you. Usually there is a £5 ($7) delivery charge, so my wife usually drives to one of the local supermarkets to do her monthly shop (after checking the website); but occasionally, one or other of the Supermarkets will offer a free delivery if you spend more than £50 ($70) with them, in which case my wife then gets them to deliver it that month.
At the end of our garden we’ve converted one of our sheds into a food store. So that when one of the supermarkets have things we use regularly on offer e.g. half price, then my wife will buy in bulk and put it in our food store; that way we cut our food bill by about £400 ($600) a year.
Other alternatives are the Markets (market stalls) which are common in most cities and towns, and their food produce tends to be cheaper than the supermarkets, and better quality because they come locally sourced, fresh from the farms and small ‘cottage industries’. The main one in Bristol is ‘St Nicholas Market’ in the centre of Bristol.
Food Markets in Bristol: https://youtu.be/hgOTI-ASbrU
Also on the rise are ‘Farm Shops’, they tend to be more expensive than supermarkets, but very popular because they sell produce locally sourced fresh from local farms and consequently of better quality than produce in the supermarkets.
When on holiday (whether in England or France) we always go self-catering, so first thing we do is to look for the local markets and farm shops.
Potatoes is the only vegetable we can’t grow in our back garden because it takes up too much space, but we don’t by them from the supermarket, we buy half a sack of potatoes (when needed) directly from a local farm for half the price of what we would pay in the supermarket, and have it delivered to our door for no extra charge.
I'm glad London recognize the health benefits of greenspace. The two best things that lead to happiness is your health and what you can forget, like wars.
Working on the similar concept in tiny homes, plants pump in fresh oxygen. The adverage building in 9 times more toxic inside than outside. As we breathe more than anything else. Make you feel alive amoung the living rather than an over synthetic world.
They remove plants at night in hospital rooms. Yet when I build a green house eco system outside of the Adobe home. It pumps in fresh oxygen during the day. I have restored built eco system for sick building in Toronto.
Yep, greenspace is recognised as a key factor to ‘wellbeing’ in the UK, so it’s not just London that has greenspace; everyone in the UK living in cities and towns are within short walking distance from greenspace regardless to where they live and work.
For example, in Bristol (where I live) there are numerous greenspaces within the city; the closes ones to me include Siston common (1.5 miles from where I live), Page Park (1 mile from where I live) and Fishponds Park (also 1 mile from where I live).
However, close to the Bristol City Centre, three notable greenspaces are:-
Brandon Hill, greenspace including nature reserve and Cabot Tower, just ½ mile from the city centre, dates back to the 1890s:
Cabot Tower, Brandon Hill, Bristol: https://youtu.be/QiOqJRK5jbo
Durdham Down, Bristol, 400 Acres of greenspace, 2 miles from the city centre, dates back to at least 883 AD.
Durdham Down, Bristol: https://youtu.be/2br4uZJmCmQ
Ashton Court, Bristol, 850 acres of greenspace, about 2 miles from the city centre, dates back to the 11th century.
Ashton Court, Bristol: https://youtu.be/pwpLYQcsNu8
However, the 2nd world war is something the British people don’t want to forget; it features constantly on television in our comedies, dramas and documentaries etc., and serves as a reminder of horrors and suffering of war. It’s the 2nd world war that has shaped who we are today, the British Personality, Character and of course, the British Sense of Humour.
Yep, we also have sick buildings in the UK (Sick Building Syndrome), but not too many fortunately; I’ve never worked in one, but I have known people who have; and in such buildings a lot of people end up taking a lot of paid sick leave.
The modern Office Block I worked in before I retired, did have air-conditioning (which nobody liked), but it was one of the ‘Smart Buildings’, so during the summer months the building did occasionally open the windows (to let fresh air in) when the building thought it was optimal to do so; and its quite a strange feeling when windows started opening on their own all around you.
The other things the ‘Smart Building’ would do was to drop fireproof steel shutters during a fire drill, to prevent any potential fire spreading to the atrium in the centre of the building. The sudden clang and vibration caused by the heavy shutters always made people jump.
Sometimes I would work late into the afternoon during the winter months (after everyone else had gone home) e.g. we operate ‘flexible working’ in the UK, and most people where I worked liked to start early so that they could go home early; whereas I would often work an extra hour or two to build up my flexi leave so that I could have a few days flexi leave without using up any of my six weeks annual leave (vacation leave); that way, with a combination of flexi leave, annual leave and Bank Holidays I usually ended up taking 3 months paid leave a year.
In the UK during the winter months it would be dark by 4pm, and working in a ‘Smart Building’ the lights would go out as people left so by 6pm when I left it was just one light on over my desk and the whole of the rest of the floor would be in pitch darkness. So when I got up to leave, walking down the corridor, with the lights coming on one at a time (just feet in front of me) with the rest of the corridor ahead in pitch black, was always an eerie feeling.
Yep, plants are the lungs of the planet, and as well as being surrounded by greenery in our back garden and in the surrounding countryside; we do also have a few indoor plants because of their benefit to health.
Although fortunately (unlike America) air-conditioning isn’t common in the UK. You tend to see it mostly in modern office blocks, and sometimes in hotels; but whenever we stay in a hotel with air-conditioning the first thing we do when we get into our room is to turn it off and open the windows.
Likewise, at home we don’t have air-conditioning, so during the summer months we just open all the windows and doors and let all the fresh air in (day and night).
I've heard horse and cow manure was a serious pollution problem back before vehicles. Milk was a very high risk of death for infants. The milk today is still not good for you, you're better off drinking rats milk. Something about the cowboy image and traditions they won't let go. They killed off alot of wildlife to make room for cattle.
Germany has the best recycling rate in the world. Austria second, followed by South Korea and Wales. All four countries manage to recycle between 52% and 56% Switzerland, in fifth place, recycles almost half of its municipal waste.
US recycles 34℅ Canada is worst at 26℅ it could be we have so much space.
I don’t know about milk in America, but milk produced in the UK is safe and healthy.
As regards recycling: One of the main driving forces behind Britain recycling more and sending less to landfills is that the British Government imposes a fine of £64 ($84) on local governments for every tonne they send to landfill sites. It’s proven an effective tool into galvanising local governments into finding alternative (and often innovative) ways to manage domestic waste and find various cost effective ways to recycle it, so that it doesn’t end up in landfill sites.
Also many cities in Britain (including Bristol) have taken the matter further, for environmental reasons e.g. transforming human waste into energy, and turning food and garden waste into compost:-
• Sewage waste in Bristol, England used to make green gas: https://youtu.be/PUpvAfWI_GA
• In Vessel Composting (food and garden waste recycling in Manchester, England): https://youtu.be/Ez3zrpuvXGw
Milk is bad for you? Better off drinking rat's milk? Can you substantiate these wild claims from reputable sources? Do we live on the same planet? Earth? Heard of the place?
I'm sure I am more in tune with the earth than you, Wesman. From building a few eco self substainable villages and made most of my living waking hours from sand and snow sculptures.
Often psychologist will ask, how long did your Mother breasts feed you as an infant. Because mother milk is better for you than cows milk.
By Dr. Walter J. Veith who said... No cow’s milk for humans at any age…even Dr. Spock agrees.
The mother’s milk of humans contains the lowest percentage of protein of all 5500 mammals on the planet. Human milk contains 1.2 mg/liter of protein while the rat’s milk contains ten times as much—11.8 mg./liter—enough to double the infant’s birth-weight in less than five days.
The best health advice I ever took from my picture of Health daughter is to cut out dairy products.
I'm not even Lactose intolerance.
That is the inability to break down a type of natural sugar called lactose. Lactose is commonly found in dairy products, such as milk and yogurt. A person becomes lactose intolerant when his or her small intestine stops making enough of the enzyme lactase to digest and break down the lactose.
Have to go with Wesman on this one - I'd need some proof that rat's milk is superior to human milk for human infants.
The only thing you offered here is that rats double in size in 5 days, as if human infants should do the same, and that it has more protein, as if that is the only ingredient in it. You didn't mention antibodies, you didn't mention carbohydrates, you didn't mention fats appropriate for humans, you didn't mention peptides like HMGF I, you didn't mention human hormones. There is an enormous list of human milk ingredients; far, far more than simple "protein".
And that doesn't begin to address the emotional gains from breast milk.
There is always the odd doctors who say don't eat this, or don't eat that. There are still doctors who believe that crap from the 70s and 80s - that a low fat diet is best. That has been proven to be wildly false.
Human breast milk is the ONLY food on the planet specifically for human consumption. Every single last thing humans consume, besides human breast milk, is a product of human domination of the environment.
Humans take their foods from the flora and fauna. This is exactly what all other living beings also do.
Of course I know what lactose intolerance is. I'm not the single dumbest person on the planet. I'm not even in the dumbest ten percent.
Don't feel so dumb.
When the 90℅ of the lower incomes, allow the 1℅ to own most of the wealth.
That pretty dam dumb.
I'm saying rats milk is better than cows milk overall, not better than humans milk. I buy almond milk, cost a little more, taste better and much healthier than any cow dairy products for its hormones, additives and the whole process.
Corperations dairies products will lie . It's more profitable to milk a cow almost 10 time the weight of a humans. Rather than healthier smaller animals milking. Like Goat’s milk is widely produced. It contains more calcium, magnesium, vitamin A, vitamin C and potassium than cow’s milk you will find in health stores. Or Sheep, before we started milking cows we were milking sheep. More than half of the world’s sheep This milk is highly nutritious, being richer in vitamins A, B and E, calcium, phosphorus, potassium, and magnesium than cow’s milk.
Too Much red Meat, Dairy Tied to high Heart Failure Risk. Since 1/3 of deaths in the world are related to your heart, that is a hell of a risk.
Middle-aged men who often feast on red meat, dairy and other high-protein foods could be on a path to heart failure. Replace these Protein to fish and eggs and sunned mushrooms. Or Whatever, isn't linked to an increased risk for heart failure.
The heart failure risk you speak of has more to do with lack of exercise, being overweight, and other factors such as smoking, drinking, etc, than it does with high intake of red meat and dairy.
Having a high low density lipid count in the blood, for instance, isn't caused by the consumption of red meat, but by the over consumption of carbohydrates. Typically we're talking about sugars. US consumption of sugar is pretty extreme.
Oh fish and eggs, yes to both, please. I'm pleased to note here that you are not a vegan.
When a person refers to Las Vegas as a phony city, and then stranger still, a man made city - I know the person is a bit out of the context of actual human existence on this planet.
If you love fake Christmas trees, you're love Vegas. I worked Vegas a few times. You think many of those rocks, trees and waterfall are naturally real? Vegas is the world's most concentrated fake and synthetics place on the Planet. If you base human existence on Vegas, you live in a fantasy and dog eat dog world.
Yes, sugar tops the world as the most dangerous food product.
Excessive protein consumption including meat, milk and cheese — are also more susceptible to death greater than tobacco. Possibly not back in 60s and 70s
Protein-lovers were 74 percent more likely to die of any cause within the study period than their more low-protein counterparts. They were also several times more likely to die of diabetes.
Yep. There's literally nothing good about solar power at this time. I sure hope the technology is improved to where it becomes a viable thing, meaning it makes sense instead of 'being green.'
"Organic Food Grower " is such a fad term , from day one on this earth until a few decades ago all food was "organic " . Now that term which began in the realm of getting "back to the garden " has resulted in not just sections of the supermarket but entire supermarkets themselves calling themselves organic markets .
What they amount to around here are overpriced designer food stores where economic intellectual elitists shop . A dozen eggs at eight bucks , high priced goat cheese , a sixty-five dollar fresh turkey .............. yup , this is just the perfect direction we need to go in for the poor masses .
Pony -tailed lactose intolerant professors of academia have no idea what saving generations of chemically altered children really requires in direction , Never seen one on a manure hauling farm tractor around here or at the local farm stands ....that's who we buy our food from .
Whoever gets in, Monsanto’s interests will be served.
Moreover, Monsanto also controls key appointments to the US Department of Agriculture (USDA) and the Food and Drug Administration (FDA)
ex Monsanto executive Michael Taylor the head of the FDA
Kind of a conflict of interest? To the most dangerous weapon on the planet, food and drink.
This is one Local Government’s solution to growing food in the UK without using chemicals. Many other Local Governments across the UK opt for ‘In Vessel Composting’, which is a similar process to the system shown in the video below but which also allows for food waste to be composted on a commercial scale for the benefit of local farmers.
What happens to your garden waste in Folkestone & Hythe District Council (local government covering the Folkestone area of, Kent, England):- https://youtu.be/SJceEgDDzaU
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I don't know how will you react to this. But it has been my observation that American guy are more friendly and open compared to the British or people from united kingdom. no offensement
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