Category Archives: The Environment

How to stop the Swine Flu

Want to help prevent future flu pandemics?  It’s easy.  You don’t have to lobby congress for billions of funding for pandemic research.  You don’t have to wear a surgical mask 24×7.  No, the best thing you can do is to vote with your dollars.  Buy pasture-raised pork and other meats.  Really, it’s that easy?  Indeed it is.  Read this fantastic article from Wired.com.

http://www.wired.com/wiredscience/2009/05/swineflufarm/

So next time you go the grocery store to pick up a cellophane wrapped package of meat (how convenient!), or you order that steak or the pork chops off the menu at the restaurant, just realize that you are contributing to system that is killing us.  Sounds harsh?  Well, it’s time we faced the cold hard facts.  So what’s the answer?  Find local producers in your area that raise their animals on pasture.  They care about the welfare of their animals, their workers, the environment, and their customers.

http://www.eatwild.com/

EatWild.com is a great resource to find local producers.  Go to the farmer’s markets, or better yet go to the farms, and know where your food comes from.  It could prevent the next flu pandemic.

Michael Pollan is My Hero

Please read this. It’s important to our future. Really. I’m not joking.

Oh, and don’t get scared away by the fact it is many pages long. Just sit down and dedicate some time to it.

The Food Issue – An Open Letter to the Next Farmer in Chief – Michael Pollan – NYTimes.com

P.S. Yes, it was published almost 10 days ago and I’m slow in getting it posted. What can I say? I’ve been busy.

Reverse Graffiti

The Reverse Graffiti Project: Video

Fast forward past the boring introduction with cheesy music to get to the heart of it.

I like when he talks about how he got the inspiration for this.  Working in a restaurant, he started cleaning a dirty spot on the wall only to find that the rest of the wall was dirty too, and the now clean spot stood out too much.  He ended up cleaning the entire wall so it wouldn’t “look strange” and thought about how he’d now have to clean the entire restaurant.  I know the feeling, buddy, I know the feeling.

Pork I Can Get Behind

In Trial Run, Chipotle Heads to the Farm – washingtonpost.com

Chipotle is the only fast food restaurant where Lisa and I can actually eat meat.  She and I have been trying to follow a pasture/natural-raised meat diet.  Unfortunately, that means we end up eating vegetarian most of the time when we eat outside of the home.  However, Chipotle brings some hope that pasture-raised meat can become more prevalent in restaurants.

Which produces less carbon, an apple from NZ or NY?

A Reporter at Large: Big Foot: Reporting & Essays: The New Yorker

This is a great article on the global climate crisis.  It talks about “food miles”and how poor of a indicator it really is when trying to discern carbon impact.  It’s a bit long, but stick with it; the article is definitely worth the read.

Biofuels: Not Such A Good Idea After All

Biofuels Deemed a Greenhouse Threat

A new study finds that when you take into account the changes in land-use patterns caused by increased consumption of biofuels, that we are actually releasing more carbon than conventional fuels.

Oh, Pasture-Raised Meat! Where are you?

I’m having an “I Hate New York” day. You would think that a city of 8 million people would have everything under the sun. You would think that there would be so many people with such broad interests that it would create enough demand, even in niche areas, so you could easily find whatever your heart desires. You would think. I’m here to tell you that it just isn’t true. As diverse as NYC seems, most people here are really the same. New Yorkers are much more “middle America” than they would ever admit.

Why is there not a butcher in all of NYC that carries locally-produced, pasture-raised meat? I have done some extensive searching and I found one, and all they carry is pork chops and pork spare ribs that are priced twice as much as what I can buy at the farmer’s market. And don’t tell me it is economically sustainable, that there isn’t enough demand. See here for proof that it can work.

So instead of heading off to the butcher shop any day of the week, I have to wait for Wednesday or Saturday to go to the farmer’s market to buy from the two producers who bring their product into the city (Flying Pigs Farm and Hawethorne Valley Farm). Thank God for the farmer’s market. Of course, if I really want to plan ahead, I can always order online, but that’s not the point.

P.S. If you want more info on pasture-raised meat, check out this great website. And if you want to read a great book that talks about pasture-raised meat and other meat-eating issues, then read The Omnivore’s Dilemma.