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Blog: Green Forests, Cool Planet

Archive for the ‘Inspiration’ Category

Coexisting with wildlife

Monday, April 13th, 2009

As Earth Day approaches, how about taking a moment to applaud yourself for everything you’re already doing to be kind to the planet. Maybe you’re saving energy (and reducing global warming emissions) by driving less or adjusting your thermostat. Maybe you’re saving trees by using less paper and buying recycled paper products.

Lately I’ve been thinking about the wildlife that lives around me. Born Free USA reminds us that “our earth is their earth home too.” Their “Coexisting with Wildlife” campaign is designed to promote the peaceful sharing of the earth, particularly in areas where people and wildlife tend to come into conflict. Their website has all sorts of resources for humanely living with the animals in our midst.

Check it out and share it with others!

For anyone living in an urban area or in areas abutting undeveloped natural lands, rats, mice, squirrels, raccoons, skunks, deer, and even coyotes probably live in your neighborhood, and even in your home. Sometimes it may be tempting to call these critters a nuisance - when the deer feast on your favorite flowers or the raccoons make a mess out of your tidy trash bag or a skunk sprays your dog. This year on Earth Day, send out a moment of appreciation for all these wild and semi-wild creatures and keep on caring for the Earth we all share!


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Goldman Environmental Prize showcases grassroots leaders around the world

Friday, April 18th, 2008

This week the 7 inspiring people from around the world received the Goldman Environmental Prize. For me, the annual awards ceremony in San Francisco gives me a huge charge of inspiration about what is possible at the grassroots level to lead protect the environment.

These are ordinary individuals who became environmental heroes. Each of them noticed a severe local environmental problem and gathered their friends and neighbors to demand change — usually from government officials or giant corporations. They have devoted incredible passion, smarts and effort to their work. Many past winners have been threatened with death, some have been jailed, some are no longer alive. Their courage and success are truly inspiring. Take a few minutes to watch the powerful videos that tell each winner’s story.

Pablo Fajardo Mendoza and Luis Yanza, Ecuador: fighting Chevron to bring justice and environmental recovery to an area devastated by oil pollution.
Feliciano dos Santos, Mozambique: activist-musician who brings education about sanitation and clean water systems through performance and community-based outreach to one of the poorest nations in the world.
Rosa Hilda Ramos, Puerto Rico: a grandmother working to protect a precious marshland.
Jesús León Santos, Mexico: an indigenous Mexican farmer utilizing pre-Columbian agriculture techniques to transform a barren area into rich farmland.
Marina Rikhvanova, Russia: working to protect Siberia’s Lake Baikal from oil and nuclear interests.
Ignace Schops, Belgium: campaigned to secure the country’s first and only national park.

Each prize winner receives $150,000 to support their work. Equally important, they get international visibility and clout that helps advance their cause. Since receiving a Goldman Prize, 8 winners have been appointed or elected to national office in their countries, including several who became ministers of the environment. The 1991 Goldman Prize winner for Africa, Wangari Maathai, won the 2004 Nobel Peace Prize. And, they get the chance to inspire each of us!

~ Carolyn

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