The Brilliance of “One Tree Planted”

Tree Power

An Awesome Organization

One Tree Planted is a wonderful not-for-profit that plants trees. The premise is simple. For every dollar donated, they will plant a tree. You can pick where in the world you would like for these trees to be planted, and they will work with local partners to make it happen. It’s an excellent system for making a positive contribution to the planet (see In Defense of Your World), and a practical means of exercising your concern for climate change. Yes, we need speedy and significant policy change to counter the rapid destruction of our forests, but we also need people out there, literally on the ground, planting new trees. This organization offers precisely that!

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Letting Go of Disposable Water Bottles

Water Fountain

Bottled Water is Overrated

This one should be a pretty straightforward win. We can really do without disposable water bottles. The amount of plastic generated by our water bottles is obscene, and growing (see A Million Bottles a Minute). Now, I get that we need water. For those of you who know me personally, you know that I drink a fair amount of water every day. I normally have a water glass hovering nearby or my trusty water bottle within reach. My water glass and I are reasonably attached, and I admit that I can get a little antsy if I don’t have access to water. Water is life, but it’s also personal. I get genuine satisfaction from filling my water glass or bottle.

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The Golden State’s Shining Example

The Golden Coast

California is Committing to Solar

Despite the current US President’s debilitating view on science and climate change, individual state governments are stepping up. Although plenty of states are now recognizing the need to address climate change, California in particular represents a shinning example, as it continues to pass progressive environmental legislation. Just last month, the California Energy Commission mandated that nearly all new residential construction will require solar panel or connections with a solar powered system. This requirement will take effect as of January 1, 2020, and is the first US state to do so.

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Canada’s Environmental Shame

Oil Slick

Buying Into Oil Pipeline Expansion

Yesterday the Canadian government announced its decision to buy up the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline at a cost of $4.5 Billion dollars (CBC). For months now the expansion has been delayed due to its failure to meet environmental regulations and strong protests from Canadians, especially Indigenous groups. Despite the considerable resistance, the current government’s campaign promises to end fossil fuel subsidies, the lack of Indigenous consent, objections from the BC (provincial) government, and the Paris Accord commitments, the government is planning to go ahead with the purchase.

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Tokyo’s Love Affair with Bicycles

Tokyo Bicycles

The Next Stage of Urban Cycling

Living in Japan for nearly a year now, I am still perpetually amazed and impressed by the number of people who chose to commute by bike (see The Daily Commute). It’s a clean, convenient, and cost-effective means of getting around, and it has the potential of bringing genuine joy to the rider. I’m certainly a fan. Biking to work, school, and social events had often been my preferred means of travel back in Montreal (despite the long winters), but here in Tokyo, they’ve managed to bring urban cycling to the next level!

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