There’s something about this tale that I find quite delightful – it’s ‘the little stream that could’. The New York Times reported that the Cheonggyecheon stream, which has long meandered beneath the concrete surface of Seoul, is once again seeing the light of day. The extensive restoration of this stream, which has been transformed from a polluted sewer, to a clear and inviting sanctuary, is part of an international effort to “daylight” city-based waterways that were covered-up during the boom of the automobile. I once heard that waterways are the ‘veins’ of the land, just imagine the positive spin-offs of this project if it were seriously applied in our neighbourhoods. If this is where we’re heading, we have a very bright future to look forward too.
PS – if you live in the top of the South Island come along to my first cooking demo at the Organic Green Grocer this Saturday. I’m making Yummy Organic Pumpkin Soup. Some of the ingredients will be on special at the shop, and there will be heaps of organic giveaways. There will also be chance to meet some of the lovely organic producers of our parts. I’d love to meet you!
Lets begin with good news for te ao Maori – a new bill proposing that Matariki become a public holiday is now set to get a hearing in Parliament. Check out this Stuff article (Stuff.co.nz).
Onto New Zealand youth
because they’re leading the way in this instance. Four young kiwis
were selected to participate in the UN Children’s Fund Children’s Climate Change Forum in Copenhagen from November 28th to December 5th (NZ Herald).
Here’s another tale of inspirational young people
opening up new worlds of possiblity
– “10-year-old Anna Zanotti, of Italy, and 14-year-old Joshua Kim, of the United States – went all the way to Birmingham to contribute their own savings to the cause to eradicate the crippling disease polio” (Happy News.com).
More inspiration – in the States, the NZ Herald reported that an anonymous donor has paid for a series of motivational bill boards
to be displayed across America, check out this Happyzine blog
This guy doesn’t need billboards, when he heard
he’d been labelled ‘the happiest man in the world’
he laughed and laughed. Check out this article
about a Tibetan lama who has spent a lot of time sitting still and “doing something” (NY Times).
Sometimes our feline friends seem to be meditating… and here’s an interesting new fact about them – “Cat owners who think their cats control them now have some scientific confirmation: Animal vocalization experts have just identified a special manipulative purr that felines have evolved, in part, to get what they want from people” (Discovery.com).
Now onto positive environmental news, here we have a tale of golfers and conservationalists working together to protect our unique native wildlife. “A $2 million ecological restoration project is set to transform one of New Zealand’s premier golf courses into a pest-free bird sanctuary” (NZ Herald.com).
More environmental success, this time in the
protection of a rare native bird species – the kokako
– in the Hunua Ranges Regional Park. Some say the call of the kokako
is the most hauntingly beautiful of any of our birds. Check out this You Tube
piece on the Kokako call (People’s Times.com).
Here’s some good news involving many parties
not usually associated with working together. “The Wildlife Conservation Society announced today that critically endangered alligators
in China have a new chance for survival. The WCS’s Bronx Zoo, in partnership with two other North American parks and the Department of Wildlife Conservation and Management of the State Forestry Administration of China, has successfully reintroduced alligators
into the wild that are now multiplying on their own” (Esciencenews.com).
In the UK the government has big plans to subsidise off-grid power
. Their goals are, “a fivefold increase in renewable power generation to provide 30 per cent of Britain’s power by 2020. It calls for two per cent of the UK’s energy needs to be met by power generated off-grid
in homes and businesses” (Off-Grid.net)
Have you heard of Rice Concrete? It’s a new way of processing rice husks for use in concrete and it could lead to a boom in green construction (Msn.com).
Britian has also given the go ahead for four ecotowns
to be built. “Charging points for electric cars, solar and wind power infrastructure
, and so-called smart meters to track energy use will all be built in, while 40 percent of their area will be devoted to parks, playgrounds, and gardens” (Grist.org).
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