Overwhelmed by Climate News?

Capitalism may be our Salvation.

Glimmer of hope. © Islandguide Instagram

Glimmer of hope. @islandguide

Didn’t see that one coming did you? My dream is that there will be home energy kits available at Home Depot, Walmart, Lowes, or other box store that anyone can buy at a reasonable price and install easily. I’ve just started to see a glimmer of that future.

Of course, California is taking the lead after years of post-apocalyptic fires and rolling blackouts thanks to their largest utility Pacific Gas & Electric (PG&E). If you haven’t followed the CA fires, know that the utility caused some of the worst fires.

Here’s the thing you might not realize; utilities are not paid to maintain their lines. They are paid to provide electricity at a reasonable cost. Large private utilities’ first goal is to make money for their stockholders. It’s to maximize profits in what has been for years a flat market, it’s changing a bit now that electric cars are on the scene, but for years it has meant minimizing expenses, such as maintaining or improving the grid. Utilities do the minimum amount of work necessary to deliver service.

Utilities do need to provide a service to their ratepayers, but reliable service is not guaranteed. The grid is only as reliable as it has to be to get the job done.  Many people have been conditioned to expect power outages in bad weather or during a high-use peaks in the summer or winter. Truth be told, it doesn’t have to be that way.

Several CA fires were started due to sparks caused by PG&E’s poorly maintained lines. Then, to add insult to injury, PG&E turned the power off prevent more fires, leaving people in the dark, including: traffic lights, grocery stores, hospitals, people on ventilators…you get the idea. One minute all the lights are on then without warning all intersections become 4-way stops.

Californians are fed up with utilities more than most, which is great. People with money are needed to fund the trend to reasonably priced home power systems. Climate change is such an all-encompassing term with very few, if any, real solutions attached to it that most people just ignore it until the fire (or water, in some parts of the world) is at their front door. The beauty is Californians aren’t necessarily trying to mitigate climate change they’re just solving their own energy problems and in doing so reducing carbon emissions as a byproduct.

Building renewable energy distributed grids (I also see communities coming together to power a number of houses via community solar, or other renewable energy) is the best way to lower the world’s carbon footprint without changing our lifestyles.

OK, my glimmers of hope that capitalism will lead the way to reduce global carbon emissions are the following:
•    Tony Seba, RethinkX. He has been one of my inspirations for years. Here’s a link to his Clean Disruption of Energy & Transportation video
•    Generac Generator is now offering a solar option for their generators.
•    Frustrated With Utilities, Some Californians Are Leaving the Grid, Citing that more blackouts, wildfires and higher electricity rates, a growing number of homeowners are choosing to build homes that run entirely on solar panels and batteries.
•    There are DYI solar kits coming on the market and how-to videos on YouTube.

If you’re feeling overwhelmed with climate news, visit the links above and know that capitalism may offer a path to mitigating climate change and keep the power on 24/7.

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Perfect Time for Plant-Based Meals

covid_enviroI was going to say, great time to go vegan, but I know change takes time — a lot of time.

Take my in-home campaign to stop using plastic wrap. How long could that take? FIVE years! It started in 2015 and has FINALLY taken hold in my household. Both of our parents use plastic wrap to save leftovers and we naturally took up the habit as adults. To make the change the following things had to happen:

  • I heard someone talking about not using plastic wrap – is that even possible? (Yes.)
  • I started saving food containers from salsa, sauces, pickles, jelly and more. Why hadn’t I done before? Why did I ever buy plastic containers specifically for storing leftovers? It seems crazy now.
  • When I started using food containers for leftovers I appreciated that:
    • They stacked well in the fridge and didn’t take up much room,
    • A perfectly good pot or bowl wasn’t taken out of service,
    • They were more airtight and easier to use than plastic wrap,
    • After five years, husband is a convert – he puts leftovers in used food containers. YAY!! Our last box of plastic wrap is languishing in a drawer.

So, five years to get two people, one of whom is completely motivated, to stop a lifelong habit. That’s a long time. So, I don’t expect everyone to jump on the plant-based bandwagon overnight, but as most people have more time during this sequestration, it’s a perfect opportunity to learn a few plant-based recipes that can be worked into a busy schedule later.

Why plant-based? Good for you and the planet. And, now, if you have more time thanks to Covid-19 sequestration, perfect time to start a new habit – so join me! Plus, there are a lot more options than when I tried to go vegan five years ago. As for anything new it does mean a little more meal planning and time in the kitchen because instead of slapping your usual together you’ll be learning new recipes.

The reasons I decided to go plant-based again are:

  • “Already global food production accounts for about a third of all emissions. To avoid [more] dangerous climate change, Greenpeace has estimated that the world needs to cut it’s meat and dairy consumption in half by 2050…” The Uninhabitable Earth: Life After Warming by David Wallace-Wells
  • The Game Changers Movie was another wake up call. Plants are good for my guts and my performance. They have a list of recipes and so does Forks Over Knives  (another good movie).
  • Now is the perfect time to reassess our values. An article call this time the Great Pause. Time to think and choose differently when the world ramps back up again. I agree. Do we really need to be on the treadmill we were on before Covid-19? Will taking a little more time to plan and prepare meals be better for our bodies and our planet? (Yes!)
  • And, finally the kicker is that meat is not a very efficient food source. We have to grow grain, which we could eat,  but we feed it to cattle instead and then eat the cattle. The worst part is the amount of water that’s used to produce one pound of beef: 1,7990 gallons.
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Thank You 23rd Legislative District!!

100% Clean Energy Bill signed into law!

100% Clean Energy Bill signed into law!

We are so fortunate, in Kitsap County, to have Senator Christine Rolfes who co-sponsored the governor’s 100% clean energy bill and sponsored the majority of orca bills that were recently signed into law. And, I’m so grateful to Representatives Drew Hansen and Sherry Appleton for voting yes on the 100% clean energy bill. Thank you for listening to our concerns about global warming and acting on our behalf.

The main provisions of the bill are:
•    No coal-generated electricity in Washington state after 2025
•    80% clean energy by 2030, with the remaining 20% offset with clean energy
•    100% clean energy throughout Washington state by 2045
•    Social cost of carbon must be added into all capital projects and planning. This levels the playing field for renewable energy projects.

Governor Inslee’s 100% clean energy bill is being described as landmark legislation – the strongest in the nation.

Is it time to rest on our laurels? Unfortunately no. Our utilities need to hear from us.

May 22nd PSE is holding a listening session at the Bellevue Hilton, 300 112th Ave SE in Bellevue. There will be a rally at 4pm. Then at 4:30pm you’ll have an opportunity to let PSE VP David Mills know how important their compliance to the new 100% clean energy law is to you.

Washington is leading on climate. Let’s help our utilities stay on track and set an example for the world.

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On the Capital Steps in Olympia: No Fracked Gas

Beautiful day for a rally. Feb 21st 2019.

Beautiful day for a rally. Feb 21st 2019.

LowCarbonGirl was there! (See red arrow.)

LowCarbonGirl was there! (See red arrow.)









Over 100 people gathered in Olympia on Thursday Feb 21st at 11am to deliver 143,592 comments to Governor Jay Inslee opposing the fracked gas-to-methanol refinery in Kalama and the fracked gas Tacoma LNG project in Tacoma. It’s time to Power Past Fracked Gas and stop all new fracked fossil fuel infrastructure.

Boxes of signatures to stop Kalama methanol plant and Liquefied Natural Gas plant in Tacoma.

Boxes of signatures to stop Kalama methanol plant and Liquefied Natural Gas plant in Tacoma.

Power Past Fracked Gas Cupcakes for Gov. Inslee's Birthday.

Power Past Fracked Gas Cupcakes for Gov. Inslee’s Birthday.










Great speakers:

Article by TDN: Protesters blast gas fracking needed for Kalama methanol plant


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NO LNG – Fracked Gas the Next Big Climate Fight

350.or photo illustration

350.org photo illustration

Puget Sound Clean Air Agency (PSCAA) has not approved a permit for Puget Sound Energy’s Liquified Natural Gas (LNG) Facility in Tacoma yet. Only three more days to comment! Here’s how:

Submit comments in writing no later than November 21, 2018:

Address: 1904 3rd Ave, Suite 105 – Seattle, WA 98101

Email: publiccomment@pscleanair.org

Fax: 206-343-7522

Tacoma Weekly photo

Tacoma Weekly photo. Click to read article.

I was lucky enough to go to PSCAA’s public hearing on Tuesday October 30th with Holly Brewer from Indivisible Bainbridge and Co-Chair of Climate Action Bainbridge Michael Cox. Here some of the comments from activists fighting for fossil-fuel-free energy: video montage. (My comments are below.)



>PSCAA’s Permit Process

>READ PSCAA’s Draft Supplemental Environmental Impact Statement 

>Fracked Gas, Next Big Climate Fight

To meet our long-term Green House Gas (GHG) reduction goals, we must first stop making the problem worse. We need to stop all new or expanded uses of fracked gas, including new power plants, the Kalama methanol refinery and the Tacoma liquified natural gas facility.

My Comments at the PSCAA Hearing on Oct 30th:
I’m glad that the Agency works everyday to PROTECT public health, IMPROVE neighborhood air quality, and REDUCE our region’s contribution to climate change.

In part, because the Department of Ecology for Washington State has some pretty impressive GHG emission reduction goals, including:

•    Reduce overall GHG emissions to 1990 levels by 2020 – that’s ONLY 2 years away.
•    ​Then to reduce overall GHG emissions to 25 percent below 1990 levels by 2035.
•    And, finally to reduce emissions to 50 percent below 1990 levels by 2050.

How are we going to meet these goals if we continue to build fossil fuel infrastructure INSTEAD of transitioning to renewable energy? We’re not.

The Draft (SEIS) states that it focuses exclusively on the lifecycle of GHG emissions. And, that the approval of PSE’s LNG Facility is DEPENDANT on British Columbia being the SOLE source of its natural gas supply. How can British Columbia be considered better than anything else when a pipeline exploded near Prince George, British Columbia earlier this month? It released UNTOLD amounts of methane and other Green House Gases into the air.

Please DENY the final Order of Approval for PSE’s LNG Facility in Tacoma. To truly reduce GHG emissions we need our energy companies to transition entirely off of fossil fuels. There is no other way for Washington State to meet its GHG emission reduction targets.

Thank you.


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It’s getting hot in here…PSE IRP Advisory Group Meeting

Puget Sound Energy, Meydenbauer Center, Bellevue, IRP, PSE

Director of Energy Supply Planning Irena Netik welcomes everyone to PSE’s 2019 IRP Advisory Group Meeting.

>> PSE 2019 IRP Work Plan (PDF)

>> PSE 2019 IRP Meetings, Minutes, Schedules

Teslas, Leafs, and hybrids poured into the parking lot under the Meydenbauer Center around 5:30pm on August 28th.

Concerned citizens and activists filled the double conference room at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue Tuesday night. At one point during the evening someone mentioned going off grid to leave PSE’s fossil-fuel based services and the room erupted with clapping.

Manager of Resource Planning Phillip Popoff discussed planning standards and resource needs. He talked at length about RCW 19.285 – the Washington State Energy Independence Act – also known as the state’s Renewable Portfolio Standard. What he did not make clear was that the three investor owned utilities need to serve their customers with only 9% renewable energy now and that it caps off at 15% in 2020 – AND that those targets can and are being met with Renewable Energy Credits – not by bringing new renewable energy online.

PSE made it clear they didn’t want to discuss policies in this meeting. However, PSE’s current level of carbon emissions result from policies that require PSE to serve customers with the least cost combination of demand and supply-side resources (which has been fossil fuels).

Upcoming Meetings:

They said that polices are the purview of PSE management and there weren’t any management present at the meeting – advisory group meetings are more technical in nature. Those executives would be available during Listening Sessions, which will start in the Fall, dates, times and locations to be announced.

Oct 11th meeting where the social cost of carbon will be discussed.

PSE set aside 40 minutes for comments at the end of their meeting (7:20pm) and allowed 2 minutes per person, which was strictly enforced by the moderator. I was one of the 20 people lucky enough to comment. PSE said they were not going to record comments verbatim, but instead summarize them in their meeting minutes.

Colstrip Units 3 and 4 are still not working AND THEY STILL DO NOT KNOW WHY. Time to cut off funding for Colstrip instead of propping up this unreliable plant.

– Doug Howell, Sierra Club

Don Marsh, President of CENSE comment (a fictitious look into the future IF PSE did the right thing):

I will read a news article from the Bellevue Reporter, dated August 28, 2030.

Representatives from Puget Sound Energy were joined by environmental organizations, faith groups, and tribal leaders to celebrate the attainment of 100% renewable sources of electricity, two years ahead of the 2032 target date.

On Tuesday, PSE switched its last natural gas power plant to run on hydrogen produced using electrolysis powered by excess wind, solar, and hydro power.

Company officials shared credit for the achievement with voters who passed a precedent-setting carbon pricing initiative, communities that strengthened building codes, and customers who invested in solar panels and batteries to lower their carbon footprints.

“The summers of 2022 and 23 helped to focus our efforts,” said PSE CEO Kimberly Harris.  The company’s executive recalled the back-to-back summers when children weren’t allowed to play outside in the Puget Sound’s smoke-filled air.  Concerns were compounded during the winter of 2022, when no snow fell at elevations below 7,000 feet.  Plants perished in parched yards as water rationing began.  Residents were further dismayed when two more baby orcas starved in the Puget Sound.  The costs of lower tourism, outdoor recreation, and fishing delivered a painful blow to the local economy.

“It became crystal clear to everyone,” said Han Stevens, a local volunteer for the Sierra Club.  “No one thrives when our environment is out of whack.  Fortunately, PSE has taken a leading role in an energy revolution that is occurring all over the world.  We are on track to have a carbon-free world where people and the planet will benefit.”

My comments:

PSE’s 2017 IRP states that it is “keenly aware of their customers’ interest in reducing PSE’s carbon emissions…

When I read that, I thought my work here is done….

But, then I read on… apparently the current level of “emissions result from policies that require PSE to serve customers with the least cost combination of demand and supply-side resources….

If policies have prevented PSE from reducing their carbon emissions in the past, I’m hoping that now that the WUTC has directed PSE, as well as other Investor Owned Utilities, to use “a more robust cost-of-carbon estimate in future resource plans,” renewable energy will be more viable.

I would expect that Montana wind, for example, might fair better in PSE’s 2019 IRP than it did in 2017.

I was impressed that Montana State Representative, Denise Hayman was at the IRP hearing in Renton, WA, in February.

She said that they have “great wind in Montana and can provide wind energy to WA at a very reasonable cost.” Also she talked about the fact that Montana wind generates the most energy in the winter when WA needs it. And, that it could eliminate the need for PSE’s proposed gas peaker plants.

I look forward to seeing PSE’s 2019 IRP that brings new renewable energy online and has a roadmap for a 100% renewable energy future.


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Why an Electric Car is the Perfect Second Car

2017 Nissan Leaf EV, electric car

2017 Nissan Leaf

If you’ve been following my blog, you know I’ve been looking for ways to reduce my carbon footprint for the past few years. I had hoped to be in the process of converting our local electricity from fossil-fuel based to renewable energy, but after that 2.5 year campaign that came to a grinding halt, I decided to buy a used electric car anyway. Why used? Buying used is the cornerstone of reducing our impact on the earth. Buying used means that more emissions are not being generated to create a new product plus it keeps items out of landfills longer.

Before I bought a used electric car (on Craigslist), I quizzed my friends who were already driving Nissans, Teslas and other electric cars. Is the range thing an issue? Not for Tesla owners. But for all other used electric cars made before 2017 that get about 80 miles or less per full charge, range is something to consider. The best advice I got was to hang on to one gas-powered car for now. Many households have two cars, if one is gas-powered then it can be the road-trip car while the electric car can be the commuter or errand car – range anxiety solved.

My 2017 Nissan Leaf gets about 100-124 miles per charge and that 20+ miles means I can drive to all my usual haunts. I looked back over the past year and realized that most of my trips are 6-12 miles long, on the island, where I live, or within 30 miles of the island. I LOVE my Nissan Leaf it is the perfect island car.

Benefits I expected:

  • Eliminating my car emissions (no more guilt driving past people eating at cafes on the street).
  • Eliminating guilt about running a bunch of errands in one day
  • Reducing the cost to drive – it costs about $3.50 per 100 miles (if electricity is 12 cents per kWh — the national average) vs gas which costs about $12 per hundred miles (if gas is $3.50/gallon and the car’s fuel efficiency is 30 mpg).
  • Reduced maintenance costs: mainly tires, oil and windshield wiper blades.

Benefits I didn’t expect:

  • No gas smell in the garage
  • No need to go to smelly gas stations and pump gas – didn’t realize how much that was chaffing me.
  • So easy to charge – it just plugs into a regular wall outlet – and charges overnight. I haven’t had to charge it away from home yet.
  • Electric bill did not go through the roof. It costs about $30 more a month to charge my car, but that’s still a lot less than I was spending on gas.
  • Super zippy and fun to drive. It’s FUN.


If you live on Bainbridge Island or in Kitsap County and are available on Friday, there is a talk at the Bainbridge Island Senior Center on transportation alternatives:

Rethinking Transportation
Friday, August 3rd at 3:00 PM
Huney Hall in the Bainbridge Senior Center

Speakers: Demi Allen Vice-Chair, B.I. Multi-Model Advisory Committee & Co-chair, Bainbridge Mobility Alliance and Erika Shriner, Co-Chair, Climate Action Bainbridge

On Bainbridge, our automobiles represent a major source of greenhouse gases and traffic seems to constantly increase.  Fortunately, there are alternatives for meeting our transportation needs that are cleaner, healthier and – yes – more enjoyable.

Stop by to learn more about our transportation options and some of the changes planned for our island. AND become part of a community-wide effort to improve our quality of life while reducing our contribution to climate change.



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Washington Utilities Now Need to Consider Emissions

PSE UTC hearing in Feb 2018

Activists pack PSE’s 20-year Integrated Resource Plan Utilities and Transportation Hearing in Feb 2018.

We were heard!! Great news for everyone who participated in PSE’s 20-year plan hearing in February.

The Utilities and Transportation Commission (UTC) formally “acknowledge” the Integrated Resource Plan (IRP), which means that PSE adhered to the letter of the law – the big news is below.  Here’s the letter: UE-160918 UG-160919 PSE IRP Acknowledgment Letter Final

The Commissioners note several areas of major concern and made several important recommendations (thanks to all of us!!):

1. PSE’s failure to properly take into account risk associated with #Colstrip
2. #PSE needs to use the social cost of carbon in its “lowest reasonable cost” solution for the 2019 #IRP.
3. They recommend supplemental analysis of the Tacoma #LNG terminal given PSE’s erroneous assumption that this project is a done deal.
4. They call out PSE for ignoring many core questions about the #Eastside #Energize transmission project.

The #UTC also acknowledges the tremendous public participation in shaping this IRP, saying that it improved PSE’s IRP and the Commission’s process.

A special THANK YOU to Nathaniel Jones, the mayor pro-tem of Olympia, Michael Lilliquist a Bellingham City Councilmember and Jay Arnold Deputy Mayor of Kirkland for their fabulous article: It’s Time to Make Western Washington Coal Free (Kirkland Reporter).

Articles about the hearing results:

  • Washington State Regulators Tell Utilities to Tally Social Costs of Carbon Emissions (Seattle Times) All WA #utilities will now be required to take #carbon #emissions into consideration when developing their 20-year integrated resource plans. The UTC hearing in Feb was a huge environmental step forward!!
  • Considering Costs of Fossil Fuels in Power Generation Makes Sense (Union Bulletin) “The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission directives were sent to Pacific Power (a provider of electricity in Walla Walla), Puget Sound Energy and Avista Corp, which together serve more than 1.47 million state customers, according to The Seattle Times. The cost of power can’t be considered in a vacuum. It’s clearly more than dollars. It includes the toll to the #environment and the monetary cost of cleaning up or mitigating damage.”
  • Regulators Direct Utilities to Consider Carbon Emission Cost (KHQ)
  • Regulators Raise Tough Questions about Colstrip’s Power Plant (Billings Gazette) “Power plant owners Avista Corp., Puget Sound Energy and PacifiCorp are being asked to explain what the consequences might be if a #Colstrip co-owner calls it quits, or something happens to the #coal mine feeding the power plant. Washington State’s Utility and Transportation Commission expects those questions answered next year, when the utilities submit 20-year resource plans. At issue is cost. The #UTC is concerned that an unexpected departure by Colstrip co-owner Talen Energy or changes at the #Rosebud Mine could increase the price Washington consumers pay for Colstrip power. Those concerns dovetailed with UTC awareness that state and federal regulations of greenhouse gases could also drive up #energy prices. “It is imperative that utility planners recognize the risks and uncertainties associated with greenhouse gas #emissions and identify a reasonable, cost-effective approach to addressing them,” the commission said in its ruling last week.”
  • Colstrip Part Owner giving 4.5M to Help Town Transition Beyond Coal (Independent Record) “Colstrip’s largest shareholder, Puget Sound Energy, has also agreed to be financially ready for power plant closure in nine years. The Seattle-area utility has also not specified an actual shutdown date. Puget has pledged $10 million in transition money to help the #Colstrip community move beyond the closure of the power plant.”
  • Washington Utilities Told to Factor Social Cost of Coal into Planning Decisions (Planet Save) “The Washington Utilities and Transportation Commission has issued a directive to three utility companies in the state telling them to include the social cost of coal in their future planning. Under the new guidelines, the cost of coal calculation will be $42 per metric ton by 2020 and rise to $60 per metric ton by 2040. The three utilities subject to the new directives are Puget Sound Energy, Avista Corp, and Pacific Power. The three are all part owners of the Colstrip generating plant in Montana, one of the largest emitters of carbon emissions in the country. “The higher the (carbon) price, the less economic that facility will look, “ Ken Johnson, vice president of Puget Sound Energy, tells the Seattle Times. His company plans to end its reliance on coal by 2030.”

No Time to Rest on Our Laurels: SAVE THE DATE!

The first public meeting for input into PSE’s 2019 IRP is on May 30 from 1-4 pm at PSE’s headquarters in Bellevue (in the “Forum Room”).

This is the kickoff meeting for the public input process that will shape PSE’s 2019 plan.

If you’re free on May 30 in the afternoon please stop by.

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We Need to Stop Being Used as Pawns by Big Business

natural resource useIs there one type of natural resource use that’s better than the other? This is the kind of question that riles people up on social media and pits one person against another, but to what end?

If we step back just a minute from the disturbing image at the top of the composite image on the left, we’ll see what we’re talking about is natural resource use and that one industry is vying for your support for their natural resource exploitation over another industry. Bottom line is that all industries need to reevaluate their natural resource use figure out how to have less impact on the earth.

In Naomi Klein’s book This Changes Everything, she talks about industries, such as the tar sands in Alberta, being considered sacrifice zones – places where the environment is ruined – so that a product can be extracted, produced delivered, in this case oil.

Alberta tar sands

Alberta tar sands

Alberta Oil sands

Alberta Oil sands

The image on the bottom half of the composite is the most benign image of the tar sands I’ve ever seen. If you watch This Changes Everything the movie, you’ll see horrific images, more along the lines of the two on the right.

oilsand_sizeHow big is the area does the oil sands occupy you might ask? 140,000 square kilometers. Wow! Is the Alberta tar sands/oilsands/the energy industry trying to manipulate you? Yes. Clearly they’d like you to help them pick a fight with the electric car industry (they’re not innocent either, but we need to stop being used as pawns).

Companies make big profits by exploiting our natural resources, without paying for them and not being held responsible for cleaning up any pollution or obliterating ecosystems. The earth is one big ecosystem – it needs all its parts to work well. Our human idea of compartmentalizing sacrifice zones as if water doesn’t travel downhill, as if air doesn’t move as if the earth was neatly sectioned off into cubicles – we’re smarter than that. Even if we’ve forgotten all of our high school science, we can see that clouds move around, know that water moves in streams. And, if we really think about it, we’re polluting or removing the very things the earth uses to clean our air and water: clean, healthy soil, organic matter and trees.

The point is not to compare one destruction of the environment with another. It is to understand that all destruction of the natural world reduces us – it’s our most precious resource – not only is it beautiful but it’s our life support system.

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Friends, Don’t Let Friends Buy Earth Worms

Earth WormsI have a confession to make. I may have blacked out, or forgotten that I grew up in farm country, been spending too much time indoors instead of outside, but I think I finally bought into to the messaging that is a constant in the background of our lives: buy something – it will solve your problem, whatever it is. Just buy something. We are consumers after all, why deny our destiny?

I write this as a reminder to myself and to all of us – earth worms live in the ground, near the surface. No need to pay $17 for them – they’re FREE!

Here’s how it all started, see if you can relate. My fabulous husband built a compost bin in the backyard and I have been dutifully filling it up with scraps and layers of dirt. But, I noticed, worms had not found my food scraps so not much composting was going on. I knew I needed worms, and fast. I’m on a schedule, my whole life is a schedule.

A few years ago a landscaper looked at my previous compost bin and announced that I needed red wigglers and that I could buy them at the nursery, which I did a few days later. And, boom! My compost bin was working and steam rising into the frosty fall air. So, that was stuck in my head as I thought about my current barren bin.

I had reallocated the guilt I was feeling about buying a plastic container made from fossil fuels. I told myself, I’ll repurpose it. And, home I went. Opened up the compose bin and dumped the worms in. Thankfully, my fabulous husband was standing nearby.

“What are you doing?” He asked as he looked in the bin.

“Adding worms,” I said, now feeling super stupid.

“They’re dead,” he said picking out a few and showing me their lifeless bodies.

My fabulous husband lives with his feet firmly on terra firma. Somehow a shovel materialized and he dug a scoop of dirt near the compost bin.

“There are worms in the dirt,” he said picking them from the dirt and throwing big, healthy, living worms into the bin.

So, there you have it. If you see a friend, like me, who has temporarily forgotten that worms live in the soil, right under our feet, remind them so they don’t accidentally perpetuate consumerism when there is no need.

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