Aquarius cares

In a world gone crazy, it’s important to take stock of the things that really matter.

Follow these home upgrades to keep your green ratings up and your carbon footprint low:

  • Rotting rules: Invest in a Bokashi bin to turn kitchen waste into organic compost in less than five weeks. Odourless and easy to use, prices start at Dh 360. Visit www.bokashidubai.com.
  • Smart TVs: Treat yourself to a Panasonic PDP plasma screen TV, which uses 50 per cent less power and lasts longer.
  • Get planting: Save on carbon food miles and grow your own fresh produce. Visit www.tropicalpermaculture.com.
  • Encourage your children to take an interest in environmental issues. Spark a conscience in your techno-fluent child on-screen:
    • TV show: Boo&Me is a cartoon shown on KidsCo channel that brings environmental awareness to life for young children. It is based on the adventures of two children who befriend an orangutan called Boo.
    • Online activities: In conjunction with their partner World Wildlife Fund and other sponsors, Emirates Wildlife Society has launched an Enviro-Spellathon site aimed at children aged six to 14. Check out their fun, interactive learning games. www.envirospellathon.com.
    • Computer games: IBM’s violence-free eco-awareness game Power Up involves helping save Planet Helios from SmogGobs. Download it from www.powerupthegame.org.

Winds of change

By 2012, wind power will be slashing Europe’s carbon dioxide emissions by 146 million tonnes per year, which will mean they are 32 per cent of the way toward hitting their Kyoto agreement greenhouse gas reduction target.

The weight in kilograms of Jade, the turtle who was returned to the sea by Dubai’s Turtle Rehabilitation Unit. Follow Jade’s journey on www.seaturtle.org.

Seafood sees red

In the same way that Conservation International has a Red List of species facing extinction, Greenpeace has a ‘red list’ of seafood species that are “at high risk of being sourced from unsustainable fisheries”.

The list includes table favourites such as tuna, Atlantic cod, eel, haddock, hake, swordfish, sole, Atlantic salmon and European plaice. A fish might end up on the red list because of overfishing; or because the fishing methods used to harvest them endanger other species; or because of pirate fishing.

Focusing in on tuna alone, 300,000 tonnes of tuna are caught illegally from Pacific waters by pirate fishing boats every year, and fishing methods used to source tuna kills thousands of sharks, turtles, seabirds and other species.

In addition to the damage caused to the underwater world, Greenpeace says fishing malpractices are taking food off the plates of underprivileged communities. Greenpeace advises people to avoid purchasing ‘red list’ fish, and to only buy fish that have been ethically sourced from sustainable fisheries. Check out www.ethical-company-organisation.org for a list of responsible fisheries*.

Louisa Wilkins
Aquarius Magazine (Dubai)
1 January 2011

* for sustainable local fish visit www.choosewisely.ae

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