Sunday, December 28, 2008


New Year's Resolutions "stuff out"! After watching this video, and watching it every time I falter...I shall definately keep all my "stuff" together, stop buying "stuff" ( it started with Christmas...I try my best to give people what they want, but hoping they want organic produce,natural items, but due to the economic crunch, I merely said prayers to God for everyone I care about, family, friends, our employes, this nation, the U.S.A.).... I am trying to make a very important decision too...and hopefully I can accomplish it this coming year! I personally believe in the power of ONE....if I can be the consumer that needs to stop shopping, and quit eating packaged goods, or buying a new I-pod, or watching useless television programs with tons of commercials that only feeds me with the greed of the eyes for things I really should not have in the first place...and then it would be ONE PERSON WHO WON'T BE BUYING MORE STUFF!! This is one of the most important videos that will help remind me in the New Year that we all have ENUFF STUFF.....
I think there is nothing as magnificent as a tree! I am not going
to post an old poem I learned in grade school about Trees, written by
Joyce Kilmer. However, I do think she said it right.

Trees are magnificent. Planting a tree is like giving birth to a child. Once
samplings, now three juvenile narra trees are threatening to tear up the driveway, and may even be working its roots into our downstairs floor. Uncle Johnny, my husband's loveable gay uncle who loved plants set them down and now I have made the decision not to cut the narra tree down. Something may have to be done to relocate the house...

Thursday, December 25, 2008

Save Birds, Eat Chicken Damnit!

Tikling birds, or Barred Rail are now seen coming into my garden at night.I can't imagine why catching wild birds and eating them is necessary to be a gourmet. Two birds were caught in my garden and eaten by our carpenter who found them easy prey since a lot of birds frolick around my ponds and fountains where I leave clean water for them to bath and drink. My garden attracts all kinds of birds that are thriving in what I call an "oasis" in this city of overcrowded apartment houses and condominium. Birds come over due to the big trees, often full of fruit , and because I avoid using pesticides and other artificial chemicals. Yet, my garden is full of birds that help themselves eating worms, and insects they find on the ground. I don't believe what I am being told that these are not endangered and eating them is a gourmet's treat, where one can savor a meal of wild birds as a local "delicacy". chicken, just kill them quickly less they feel pain, but catching wild birds that wander into my garden is like eating a visitor that arrives in a country as a tourist.

My people tell me to try and taste just a bite of local birds stewed in garlic , vinegar and coconut oil,and I think I will have a vegetable salad with cheese and salmon instead. Sorry, I am corny....but now I don't know if the birds will be back, I certainly am going out today to buy fish again and fix up my fountains.

Tuesday, December 23, 2008

"Tis a season of Joy....and the absence of birdsong in my garden..

As the old carol beckons us to partake in a "season of joy" I wondered how many people out there in the world are truly happy at Christmas. Everyone is receiving constant buzzing from cell phones going off, and of course the exchange of text messages will be returned with the similar normal response of "Happy Holidays" or "Merry Christmas" and then hopefully continue the greeting with a "Happy New Year." However, I know some people do not believe this year brought them a lot of joy....and I guess I just had to write about one particular incident that made me very angry.

I strolled in my garden in the city, and missed the sound of the shrill cry of the family of kingfishers that has managed to make their nests in my mango tree above my tiny little fishpond. There is a small fountain that circulates water but due to the oil crisis, we saved on electricity and kept changing the water to provide a clean pond for tiny little red guppies, and a few brilliantly colored carp. Well, Felix, the gardener informed me that all the fish are gone!

The first thing that came to mind was it must have been due to the closure of the pump to save energy and money. Maybe the temperature of the water fluctuated too much, or the lack of circulation may have caused the fish to get sick and die. No, that wasn't the case, for Felix explained that he observed two kingfishers helping themselves to the tiny trapped fishes, and that Norbing, an office worker decided to "catch" the birds and give them over to one of our carpenters as a "gift."

Oh wow, I inquired to the fate of the two birds. At first I was told that the carpenter quickly had a meal of "adobong kingfishers" and I was totally shocked and revolted how casual and fast the idea of eating such beautiful birds would come to the mind of these very well fed, and well paid employees. Yet they backtracked when I was openly horrified, and then Norbing came to me and apologized with a smirk on his face and told me that TaTa's cat actually ate the birds. I was surprised that the cat got to the birds that according to Norbing, after he caught them, he gave them to Tata to "care" for them. He made a makeshift cage and the two birds broke loose and before they could take flight, the cat caught them.

Brilliant story. I wanted to pour out my anger,and gave Norbing a long lecture on indigenous birds, and how we all should realize these birds are already struggling for survival by raising their family in the city environment. He merely laughed and said he would stop catching wild birds for fun.

My gardens are full of old narra, longan, and three large mango trees.The presence of kingfishers in the last summer alone gave me hope that my small pond and fountains of fresh water were suitable for them to nest. I observed several nests in the trees of Malaysian fantails and kingfishers, even an occasional liberated parakeet that had alighted in the large tree, that my garden would be a safe haven for these birds. The kingfisher's return to the city creek happened only in the last rainy season after we had cleared a large tract of land, eliminating their arch enemy, the pythons and tree climbing vipers that decimated most of the nesting birds in the area. These kingfishers main occupation as I had been watching them were hunting for little frogs, small worms, insects and little fish they may have chanced upon spawing in polluted city creeks. I didn't mind if these kingfishers helped themselves to those guppies because I am sure their little brood of chicks were thriving in the mango trees. Now, I can only imagine, their brood are probably now starving from the death of both parents, will become extinct if people keep killing the wild birds!

How can those birds be replaced? I can't find the nest and I have to hope that one day another kingfisher family will move in again. However, my Christmas Eve morning was a silent one.....even the Malaysian fantail birds are quiet.

There has been terrible absence of song in my garden... I guess the guppies and carp who cannot speak now were avenged, in this "bird-eat-guppie-eat-bird" world of mine?

I realize too that the poor Filipino city dwellers have also been robbed of birdsong. The attitude that Norbing and Tata had was that these birds are just usurpers in this town, and catching them is an activity for their amusement. I have witnessed street children with slingshots combing the trees and trying to show off to their friends their abilities to hit and kill sparrows. On occassion, there have been large predatory birds like hawks and owls that kept mice and rat population down, but the absence of a truly environmental policy in government, and an emphasis in nature conservation in educational institutions has produced a new generation of city children with more appreciation for a "PSP" or "game boy" toys, than wild birds. This city with all its tall buildings, and shopping malls, has no parks with beautiful clear and clean ponds where children can appreciate strolling and playing in some sort of "central park."

Merry Christmas? Happy Holidays? but I will try to be "merry" for the sake of my grandchildren, but giving them less plastic toys, and more books on nature will help them appreciate birds too and let them join me to continue to provide clean water for them to drink. We welcome birds flying by to stop over and visit us, and the only gift they can give is their beautiful songs. Well, my new year's resolution is to fix the pond and give the birds another chance to trust me once more.

Monday, December 22, 2008

May I wish Everyone A "Merry Christmas" !!

Friday, December 19, 2008

Ducks can communicate, I just needed to pay more attention!

I got a call from a nervous farm hand who told me that he had seen a head of a large python lurking from our Lotus Pond at the farm. I left immediately, and my driver, Liberto was peeding down the highway to get to the farm before the snake would be caught. I wasn't necessary alone on a Sunday morning, heading for the upland country of Tagaytay. This was happening during the year, where prices of oil hit $100 a barrel. This crisis caused a downward trend in the economics of the country. There are less people on the road joyriding! Only the more serious commuters take to the highway at 8:00Am Philippine time.

I reached my small organic farm located in a glen beside the Biluso River. The rainy season has just ended, and the lots around mine have grown wild and bamboo thickets have reached my wall. Below this bamboo thicket is my Lotus pond where I keep my ducks and geese in a safe enclave with enough water for them to play and wander about.

This morning, the ducks were looking very happy frolicking back in the water they dreaded to enter a few weeks before.

I now know the "duck language" is expressed in their behavior. They form tight groups, and their heads all turn at once, their body language is pronounced in a fear that I thought was because I was coming into their space. They huddle together, all taking steps in formation as if they were one large duck coming towards me and away from the pond. I noticed it, but didn't think much of how ducks communicate, but now I understand they had been telling me and everyone that there was a snake growing larger and larger in their area.

I once found that the most cruel predator in the Philippines, is the large, water- monitor lizard. These giants have the habit of ripping the belly of their pray. They will leave their pray lying on the ground, their middle sections torn open. The monitors eat the softer parts, internal organs, then leave the rest of their carcass to rot, thus softening the harder tissue for a meal another day. Believing in the natural way of life, I discouraged my farm hands from killing and eating monitors when they caught them. Against good advise, I often ordered to release them back in the river and hope they will not return to my duck and geese pond.

Well, now I am a seasoned farmer, and know that monitors and pythons are not endangered and they must be taught never to come near our farm. I have changed after seeing my lovely geese, ducks and chickens lying silently on the ground, their abdominal cavities empty and ravaged by a savage reptile. I am now for duck rights and geese preservation, which means any reptile or wild animal coming to my farm for free food is going to end up as appetizers for my farm hands.

The 12 foot python managed to drag himself to the storm drain. He swallowed an entire chicken whole. He tried to escape but the large lump in his belly would not pass through the storm drain after he ate his meal. The snake was not able to drag his big belly out of the pond and into the safety of the bushes where he could hide.

This time, the python was discovered on an early morning after swallong whole, a single pullet that prefered to stay out at night.

The ducks were silently sitting far away from the vicinity of the ponds and avoiding the large storm drain at the side of the chicken barn. Their posture signaled to me that they were communicating something sinisetr was lurking in the chicken house. The ducks silence was meant to focus attention on the pond. My farm hands said, they saw the python, lying still, and stiff posing for the bright light shining directly into its eyes. What a dreadful threat waited for these ducks in the pond!

My ducks were telling me somthing. They, along with the chickens are being raised for their eggs, not meat. Now that I recognize that ducks can communicate, I know what the message "SNAKE" is and I did understand why the ducks refused to enter the small pond area and swim. They knew, and they were telling me that for years that damn python was growing and eating their ducklings and our chickens too stupid to realize the predator was harmless when fed, and even content to wait until its hunger pangs drove them to kill again.

I know pythons may be fascinating to some who are into reptiles, but this one is long gone and hopefully there are fewer of its friends who would come by my farm. Crows, chickens, ducks, geese feed on tiny serpents they find in the ground or in the water, but a large python this size could kill a dog and grow to its full length of 15 feet and weigh as much as 400 lbs. Risky to have such a threat around when we have the children of the farm hands, not to mention our dogs, cats, ducks, chickens and geese to protect.

Friday, May 30, 2008


These containers and disposable items are considered recyled items on a LEVEL 6.
How can people avoid polystyrene (commonly known as the brand Styrofoam) for cups, plates, carry-out containers and anything else that might touch consumables?
These items were designed to be used for a few minutes , for the convenience of the fast food crowd. OFten after eating the food, these items get tossed in the trash. Some of these containers would be kept longer if the take-out items would be kept in the refrigerator. The thing is, how does one know if these items are sanitary when these have been sitting in some pile in the back of a restaurant? Did anyone wash the actual styrofoam container a person brought home? How would the consumer know?

Any person who would be an advocate for any "green movement" worth his or her salt knows that polystyrene is bad for the environment: but few know that it isn't so great for your health either. Plastics marked with the recycling code 6, for polystyrene, can be fashioned into soft or rigid foams, and are in common use. Not only do they require petroleum to make, but they take eons to break down in the environment.

But what you might not know is that polystyrene can also release potentially toxic breakdown products (including styrene), particularly when heated! If you don't want harmful chemicals leaching into your food or drink, even at low concentrations, choose ceramic, glass (recycled), paper or safer plastics like numbers 1, 2 or 5.

I wonder after rummaging around my house what types of plastic items I can throw, and what should I just keep in some dark attic until someone invents a way that plastic can be disposed off without harming the environment. I also wonder if keeping plastic in a container ( made of plastic) will keep for a long time and not be harmful if left alone? I just can't dump it anywhere knowing that even if its recycled, it will be made into more harmful products.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

War On Plastic -- Part 2

There is no need for a degree in engineering, or chemistry to locate several hundred pounds of plastic within our community. Go to your garbage dump and see what is the main item that is being disposed.

Then go walk around your own home. Evidence of plastic pollution are in our storage closets, dumped in the garage, or in refuse bins. Go around your neighborhood, and you will see litter on roadways, in rivers, at the park, in the woodland, or on the beach. The litter will always contain plastics of some form. We can’t avoid it, not in our homes, churches, schools, offices, public recreation areas. Some will insist plastic is a necessary evil. Some say it’s the best invention of mankind. Yet even a simple survey of the items that constitute the worst pollution will list a variety of objects, all of which will contain some sort of plastic component.

Please watch this video and take note that everyone is at risk from this insidious material we know to be plastic.

Modern man prefers to take the easy way to attain the basic needs for food, water, shelter, clothing, transportation , communications and entertainment. The quest for more knowledge has been replaced with the mindless acceptance of the claims of advertisers that their product is what we need! Plastic was initially promoted with direct selling techniques where housewives could hold an afternoon gathering of family and friends for a particular brand of containers made from plastic. The party to be hosted by one of its agents who would demonstrate how convenient it would be if every household could have an array of these items for all their needs from non breakable glassware, to lazy susan turntables and as time went on, the demand for plastic containers grew to this stage where we can't do without them.

Plastic was invented to make things easier for mankind! Plastic substituted for natural things, and that was fine in the beginning when people didn't really know what these substances were. Plastics seem to have a life of their own, a glob of fossil fuels that produced a "skin" of such resilience it could stretch, and bend, and be poured into molds and imitate everything man used to identify as wood, or glass, or even metal. Plastic was a sort of antidote to nature...something that could defy nature in fact, because after awhile, everything from our materials for making shelter, and the containers storing and delivering to us our water and food were made of plastic.

Now man is far more advanced in technology than our ancestors were, but it also made man greedy for money. Rich people can afford to buy things made from natural substances. Poor people can't afford to buy real wooden tables, so they buy plastic ones with matching plastic mono block chairs.

We are now in an ironic situation where one nation gives up their natural resources in exchange for another country who produces artificial items for buyers to substitute for their natural resources. Americans dependent on other nations, like China for mass production of plastic items that the American consumers need, or they think they need. Americans are no longer making items from natural materials they can produce for them to live independent lives in their own country.

The plastic industry has gone global. The impact of a huge population of buyers willing to pay anything from 1 US Cent for a plastic bag , to $65.00 for a new cell phone or $130 for a barrel of crude oil provides staggering sums in profits in the billions of dollars. This greed for profits have pushed mankind into a global crisis far beyond the reach of modern technology to reverse, and can only be partially solved by shutting down every single plastic manufacturing plant in existence, and the world immediately stopping the burning of fossil fuels.

The population of mankind is going to reach about 12 Billion people by the next century. In the Philippines alone, the population has grown from 33 million people to 85 million in a span of only 35 years. In recent disasters occurring in areas once isolated or underpopulated, there are earthquakes and tsunami’s that can wipe out entire coastlines, and affect a minimum 1,000,000 people per disaster.

The current oil crisis prioritizes that man needs energy primarily for heat in areas of severe winter, and transportation and the industrial production of goods. Man has pulled from the earth a source of fuel in the concentrated fossil remains of millions of years of decomposed forests and animal life that existed from the beginning of time before man even knew what crude oil was for. There was little demand for crude oil when millions of kilometers of woodland was available for burning wood for fuel, and timber was abundant to use as construction materials.

Civilization improved as more convenient sources of energy were made available. Only in the last century, was fossil fuel so rampantly exploited and the by products of oil were made into synthetic materials and polymers. Producing a product called plastic was the ultimate invention by man to create a duplicate of any organic substance or material. The worse thing was, for every plastic item, more energy is needed to recycle these, and the by product of plastic production is global pollution

Global pollution from discarded plastic materials comes from garbage that has been transported by nature into the waterways, and into the ocean, where it is quickly disintegrating into the most hazardous form of environmental pollution capable of extinguishing all life on the planet within a few more years.

The sad thing is, as there is global annihilation of all animal life, eventually, the world will still have the remnants of plastic materials in its soil, and in the water.


The problem of waste generation and industrial pollution, once a local or at best a regional concern has now turned international waters into a huge washing machine with millions of tons of plastic debris floating about. In terms of impact it is no longer merely a question of pollution causing people to get sick, or children to be born from birth defects. Of course people are much weaker from inhaling urban smog, and we face famine and economic ruin if our climate changes to the point that our fresh water evaporates and turns our fertile fields into deserts.

The subtle killer that will eventually emerge as the single most destructive factor that would be responsible for killing off our food sources in the ocean, and on land will be man made plastics! We are entering stage where our need for food, water and basic energy will not be met due to the mismanagement of our environment. Fish will die and the wildlife that depend on it for food will follow, then mankind living on the ocean's produce will follow suit.

If man pollutes the ocean, and the air from all the chemicals and the earth is contaminated with toxic refuse, what would be left to plants?

Human activity is beginning to threaten the very fabric of the biosphere. The global ecosystem is already showing signs of being compromised by radiative forcing from greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, acidification of water resources, and loss of biodiversity. This is the first time in the history of the planet that human activity has resulted in such intense and perhaps irreparable damage to the environment that gives us our food, clothing, shelter and the most important to all life, clean, fresh drinking WATER.

Surprisingly, the amount of attention paid to this global threat to our oceans and to our fresh water sources in lakes and river system is secondary to our need for the convenience of having something that is believed to be strong, durable, and long lasting, yet the one substance that man has made that is causing our planet to enter into a phase of total deterioration is the substance called PLASTIC!

There is little or no amount of attention to solve this global threat from plastic pollution. This issue has been quite neglected but it has the most potential impact on the environment along with its source, petroleum, that is a fossil fuel that is causing our earth to enter a stage of warm climate which is affecting all nations.

A few discuss this problem specifically. Certain industries have brought about some attention by instigating recyling of plastics. One man's garbage and another man's treasure was a slogan that best suited the recyclers. Indeed there was both a blessing to be environmentally friendly, and a business opportunity to make a lot of profit in the form of recycling plastic from whatever it was in the garbage heaps into something else.

A few politicians will take a few sentences in their speech to underscore a need to be more environmentally conscious. They fear by specifying the cause, which is plastic pollution they may touch on businesses that deal with plastic manufacturing. This is the main cause..the manufacturing of trillions of tons of plastic products, be these first hand or Level 1 types, or the poisonous Level 7 recyled items that inspite of these being hazardous to health, are made into promotional items given away or sold at a low price as part of a purchase of some other product. These Level 7 items seem innocent, such as food containers, sports water bottles, backpacks, and canteens for children and teens to drink from. Plastic campaign buttons and visors, little plastic fans and giveaway items are part of the promotional items given to their followers. A lot of politicians have included their give-away budget as part of their election expenses.

America will need a leader that would be brave enough to include into his or her agenda that the government can save money by doing away with the purchases of disposable plastic bags, bottled water, pens, coffee cups, stirrers, straws used in government offices and all plastic paraphranelia will be eliminated.

The world would need a leader to ban all plastics. Maybe even follow suit of insisting if recycling is the solution, that every mayor, governor, senator and congressman show proof that the garbage produced in one community is directly gathered and recycled within that community! They must show how , when and how much it will cost...then make sure their citizenry pay more in taxes if they can't do it.

Does the President of the U.N. talk about plastic pollution and the need for the international community to ban it as a primary environmental hazard that spans all hemispheres?

There are no international laws that would penalize countries for the seepage of their plastic pollution into the international waters of the oceans. Yet all the international waters are good for is fishing rights open to all nations. These fishing rights are for access to a source of food, but if this source of food is endangered by plastic pollution coming from the garbage of the very nations that depend on it for food, then doesn’t it merit attention of the international community?

Enough studies have been made to confirm that there is a “plastic soup kitchen” out in the oceans of the world, with churning bits of plastic debris already on the microscopic level that is being ingested by fish, wildlife and is affecting fish farms that need the ebb and tide of salt water and fresh water from the ocean to sustain their industries. Now all the chemicals and bits of plastic are in the food chain, and plastics are showing up in the blood of infants and humans from countries dependent on fish as a source of food.

The United States has a national commitment to lower fossil fuel emissions, and to solve global warming, yet the amount of demand for timber, oil, chemicals , even plastics far surpasses all the other countries put together! The U.S.A. is the primary consumer of goods and services. The next is China, and the rest of Asia, then Europe , and fourth is Africa.


My Primary objectives are the following:

  • to show how plastic is the major contributor to ocean pollution. The objective of my blog is to give this issue attention because I realize the extent of this problem has on the following generation who will be tasked with cleaning it all up.

  • to show the extent of which the production and use of plastic has affected the lives of ordinary people who are probably not aware, nor are they able to understand why this is so dangerous to their lives.

  • to convince people that ordinary people can also do something to help stop global pollution from plastic not by donating money to any organization involved in the "green movement" but by being wise consumers who can stop plastic pollution by refusing to buy plastic in any form.

  • to deal with the needs of ordinary people for organic produce by growing their own food, or recyling organic materials like wood, stainless steel metal, glass, aluminum in their homes and community for reuse.

  • to tackle the plastic pollution in their homes by not throwing these away, but keep whatever plastic they do have and using these items for other things other than containers for food, water and products that will contaminate the earth, sky or water.


The plastic industry is a trillion dollar industry. The growth in chemical companies and plastic manufacturing industries grows at about 20% per annum and imagine if every man, woman and child will use at least 3 plastic water bottles a day, and 15 articles of plastic bags a week, at a cost of about 1/10 of a U.S.D. cent, 135 trillions tons will earn for these industries around 475 billion dollars a year! Imagine who would stop producing this poison if people want it? Its going to be hard for politicians to resist getting their campaign funds from thi industry, not to mention the amount of chemical companies and oil conglomerates. These companies produce pollution and make limited “greenwashing” efforts to hide their menacing intent to fool the public to believe they are trying to solve the problem they made.

Presently, the use of plastic is mainly in consumer goods. This can be averted if the public will demand less or no plastics when it is used to wrap, and contain food, baby and skin beauty products. The concern for human health may be the way to get mainstream plastic packaging to revert back to paper, aluminum, stainless steel, glass, ceramic, and porcelain containers.

In construction, and electrical run appliances, plastics are used and are cost comeptiative with traditional materials that are popular with buildgers because of their low cost. However, once the public becomes aware that plastic is also very brittle and not as indescructable as once perceived, the demand will go back to traditional materials. A PVC spout for drainage will not last as long as aluminum, and cast iron for sewage will outlast and outlive plastic PVC and not be harmful to the environment.

In an international toy convention held in Hong Kong, the plastic industry grows like a parasite on a booming economy of the U.S. and other Western societies that indulges their children and teen agers by giving them the latest toys,gadgets, cell phones, school accessories, even trendy food items like snack foods with the images of their popular pop idols or cartoon characters on the plastic wrappers .

The estimated production of plastics in the year 2000, was approximately 135 million tons, with North American capacity accounting for about 1/3 of this amount. Affluent countries such as Japan or in western Europe, plastic consumption can be as low as 300lb/ measured in terms of output of plastic garbage each person can dump in a year as opposed to about than 100 lbs per person in a year in the poorer countries.

The future shows the volume of plastic debris is increasing to about 10% of 1 gallon of sea water being studied by Moore ( see video reference) and in the same proportion an increase in volume of manufacturing of plastic.

Laborers are used from developing countries with less education than the more affluent countries that use the products made of polymer. This is due to the fact that in less developing countries with a lot of poor people willing to work in factories that have hazardous wastes and pollution that affects their health. Poor people are viewed by these plastic industries as “expendable” and that attitude is also carried to how they think of the consumers health. The leaders of underdeveloped countries will even bid to have these chemical plants located in rural areas where the run off from their poisonous substances can free flow into streams and then be carried out to the seas and oceans. Indeed the diabolical intent would be counter productive when fishes that spawn in rivers and estuaries are poisoned, and poor people will eventually add to their misery when crops fail and fish catch becomes sparse.

In 1993, the number of injection –molding machines manufactured in Asia exceeded that manufactured in the U.S.A.. Asians are producing and supplying U.S.A. and other Western countries with these products and hazardous chemicals used to make these products are being exported back to Asian countries an ingredients for more plastic production. It seems that Western countries with large labor unions would object to exposing workers to such hazardous conditions, but if these conditions are dangerous, why do Asian underdeveloped countries rejoice at getting contracts for these ?

How to combat big business? Don’t buy their products. The impressive record of plastic consumption is in the marketplace and this is compelling evidence that the ordinary person can do something about this menace. A large amount of consumers belong to the class of materialistic society that follows trends in Western countries. The novel use of plastics from containers of food, to blow dryers, or hair curlers, cosmetic cases, beauty products and small appliances for the home like vacuum cleaners, blow dryers, and are marketed to appeal to the females. Advertisers target men like the convenience of plastics for tools, car interiors, gadgets and handy appliances for the home and car. Even children are given the opportunity to be exposed to plastic toothbrushes with cartoon characters , toys cleverly advertised,. Children demand to buy products where free toys are given as promotions to stimulate their mothers to select those products over others.

Are we humans that stupid? Wildlife cannot understand the difference between plastic and organic. If they understood, they would not be caught eating a pc of plastic instead of their natural food. Why then are humans accepting the substitution of organic materials for synthetic ones? Marketing is to blame. We can market anything in the media provided there are consumers who will believe what they read, hear or see…in fact, a seabird sees a pc of colored red plastic like a small round plastic cap from a cosmetic container and thinks it is a little crab, then they even swallow it to carry it miles to feed this same poisonous substance to their chicks, who will later die from ingesting the plastic. Aren’t mothers also duped to believe the plastic cups they buy to put infant drinks, and the plastic bottles containing their children’s juice will not eventually harm their child?

We can’t convince the wildlife that plastics are synthetic. The majority of apathetic people will view the extinction of many species with a yawn. However once our children start getting sick from lethal bacteria in tiny bits of plastic that they may ingest, or acting strangely from lead poisoning in our food, and water, and their toys, the mothers will begin to demand that plastic if proven to be the cultprit be stripped from stores.

We can overcome this plastic pollution by demanding organic products. We also must demand these organic products not be contained in plastic. Buying local produce and local ethnic items like woven baskets, and canvass bags, or rubber shoes from organic farms or cotton garments, will make a difference almost immediately.

Friday, May 23, 2008

My Private War Against Plastic

My only home in America is located in Hawaii, in a set of islands the Pacific Ocean. I have been an organic gardener who has lived in the Pacific Islands of the Philippines too. My father is from Pennsylvania, and he passed away in 2005. He brought me up to love nature, and organic gardening. He taught me much of what my ancestors knew about organic farming, and it has enriched my life to the point that being "green" became a way of life for me. Yet like most people of my generation who were born after World War II, the convenience and the curse of plastics crept in little by little, and it has become the principle element for practically everything we humans own. Even in the most remote parts of the jungles of Asia, plastic pails and bags are found everywhere. Now plastic cannot deteriorate unless it is melted down by strong heat, or it becomes part of the environment, in land fills or often tossed into the rivers and oceans to become the menace of the 21 century!

This gut wrenching video will convince anyone who views it, that plastic must be totally banned and eradicated from the earth. The problem is, how? Recycling only makes it more toxic, like a snowball of even more dangerous elements.

Watch this BBC documentary:

Plastic is a man made substance made from oil that is already so expensive, that its by products like plastic come from the same source as petroleum. Plastic forms the primary synthetic and artificial element of everything from thread, rope, textiles, fish nets, food containers, beverage bottles, grocery and shopping bags, crates, DVD, computer disk, computer parts, auto parts, telephone instruments, cell phones, childrens toys, kitchen utensils, plates, straws,cups, disposable hospital equipment and name it, plastic is a component of whatever we have in our homes, offices, hospitals, and body bags with people in them are even in graves!

Another good video about this subject matter:

I have joined the war against plastic...and each day I will endeavor to rid my life of it. I grew up without plastics, and I can remember what it was like to do my math without a calculator, and call friends on an old antique brass telephone! We had rubber and wood spatulas in the kitchen, and Pyrex was just introduced. I do remember what life was like without plastic, but my children and grandchildren do not know what life is without plastic. I hope while I am alive, I can help undo what my generation has done and get rid of the dependency on plastic.

Recently I heard that STARBUCKS in Manila will give a P40.00(pesos or 1 USDollar) discount for everyone bringing thier own tumblers when buying a beverage from this coffee shop. This is a start, and it only takes one person to influence marketers to change over to "Green" philosophy, and stop using plastics.

I guess I can say, I have joined the "Green Revolution." I don't have to donate a penny, but stopping myself from buying products or services using plastic will create a demand for natural organic products. I bring a canvass shopping bag with me now to place purchases inside. I speak with cashiers, sales people, managers of restaurants and inform them about how plastic will affect the environment. A lot of people are listening now after the oil crisis has made costs rise to beyond what an ordinary person can cope with.

This will be very challenging, but so is getting up and down stairs in my house at my age! Wish me luck!