Strategic Planning for Nonviolent Direct Action

Every campaign or liberation struggle has two strategic aims and they are always the same:

  1. To increase support for your campaign by developing a network of groups who can assist you.
  2. To alter the will and undermine the power of those groups who support the problem.

https://www.globalresearch.ca/a-nonviolent-strategy-to-end-violence-and-avert-human-extinction-the-teachings-of-gandhi-and-martin-luther-king/5615391

Conducting Chemical Warfare on the Poor and Other Life

"

Mason has written numerous open letters to officials citing reams of statistical data to support the contention that agrochemicals, especially Monsanto's glyphosate-based Roundup, have devastated the natural environment and have also led to spiralling rates of illness and disease, especially among children.

She indicates how the widespread use on agricultural crops of neonicotinoid insecticides and the herbicide glyphosate, both of which cause immune suppression, make species vulnerable to emerging infectious pathogens, driving large-scale wildlife extinctions, including essential pollinators.

Providing evidence to show how human disease patterns correlate remarkably well with the rate of glyphosate usage on corn, soy and wheat crops, which has increased due to 'Roundup Ready' crops, Mason indicates how our over-reliance on chemicals in agriculture is causing irreparable harm to all beings on this planet."...

https://www.huffingtonpost.ca/colin-todhunter/we-have-to-roll-back-the-tide-of-pesticide-use-to-stop-mass-extinction_a_23253362/

Warning of Ecological Armageddon as Insect Numbers Plunge

The abundance of flying insects has plunged by three-quarters over the past 25 years, according to a new study that has shocked scientists.

Insects are an integral part of life on Earth as both pollinators and prey for other wildlife and it was known that some species such as butterflies were declining. But the newly revealed scale of the losses to all insects has prompted warnings that the world is “on course for ecological Armageddon”, with profound impacts on human society.

The new data was gathered in nature reserves across Germany but has implications for all landscapes dominated by agriculture, the researchers said.

The cause of the huge decline is as yet unclear, although the destruction of wild areas and widespread use of pesticides are the most likely factors and climate change may play a role. The scientists were able to rule out weather and changes to landscape in the reserves as causes, but data on pesticide levels has not been collected.

“The fact that the number of flying insects is decreasing at such a high rate in such a large area is an alarming discovery,” said Hans de Kroon, at Radboud University in the Netherlands and who led the new research...

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/oct/18/warning-of-ecological-armageddon-after-dramatic-plunge-in-insect-numbers

6 Nails in the Coffin of Meat Consumption

A series of reports just released have made headlines worldwide suggesting that transitioning away from meats and over to plant alternatives cannot wait and must accelerate worldwide. It seems as if nail by nail, the coffin of animal food gluttony is upon us and welcome. What were the new lessons learned about animal food production and environmental concerns?...

https://medium.com/thrive-global/6-nails-in-the-coffin-of-meat-production-178fef695140

The Climate Catastrophe We're All Ignoring

Imagine you're driving your shiny new car too fast along a wet, curvy road. You turn a corner and realize you're heading straight for a crowd of pedestrians. If you slam on your brakes, you'd probably skid and damage your car. So you keep your foot on the accelerator, heading straight for the crowd, knowing they'll be killed and maimed, but if you keep driving fast enough no-one will be able to catch you and you might just get away scot-free.

Of course, that's monstrous behavior and I expect you'd never make that decision. But it's a decision the developed world is collectively taking in the face of the global catastrophe that will arise from climate change...

https://www.ecowatch.com/climate-catastrophe-2485745545.html

Goodbye and Good Riddance to Livestock Farming

"A report this week by the Food Climate Research Network, called Grazed and Confused, seeks to resolve the question: can keeping livestock outdoors cause a net reduction in greenhouse gases? The authors spent two years investigating the issue. They cite 300 sources. Their answer is unequivocal. No... I would like to see the TED team post a warning on Savory's video, before even more people are misled... The end of animal farming might be hard to swallow. But we are a resilient and adaptable species. We have undergone a series of astonishing changes: the adoption of sedentarism, of agriculture, of cities, of industry. Now it is time for a new revolution, almost as profound as those other great shifts: the switch to a plant-based diet... It's time to abandon the excuses, the fake facts and false comforts. It is time to see our moral choices as our descendants will."...

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/oct/04/livestock-farming-artificial-meat-industry-animals

Alarm as study reveals world’s tropical forests are huge carbon emission source

The world’s tropical forests are so degraded they have become a source rather than a sink of carbon emissions, according to a new study that highlights the urgent need to protect and restore the Amazon and similar regions.

Researchers found that forest areas in South America, Africa and Asia – which have until recently played a key role in absorbing greenhouse gases – are now releasing 425 teragrams of carbon annually, which is more than all the traffic in the United States.

This is a far greater loss than previously thought and carries extra force because the data emerges from the most detailed examination of the topic ever undertaken. The authors say their findings – published in the journal Science on Thursday – should galvanise policymakers to take remedial action...

https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2017/sep/28/alarm-as-study-reveals-worlds-tropical-forests-are-huge-carbon-emission-source

Why the Dairy Industry is a Dystopian Horror

Lately I’ve been asking myself some existential questions -  contemplating if I grew up in a dystopian nightmare, blissfully unaware that I was part of a horrifying regime. 

Surrounded by the green rolling hills of the English countryside, with ‘happy’ cows grazing in the fields, my childhood sounds idyllic, and it was. 

At least it seemed that way to me, but the industry that my family farm is a part of has a dreadful underbelly that no one wants you to know about.

I am the daughter and grand-daughter and great-grand daughter of dairy and beef farmers with dairy and beef farming aunties, uncles, cousins, and family friends. 

You would think I would be well aware of exactly what happens to dairy cattle. 

I remember my dad complaining of his difficulties with TB tests, mastitis, laminitis, milk fever, milk quota, but I realized I had never really spoken to my dad about what he does in detail, and he’s never volunteered the information.

Dairy is Scary is a short, but powerful documentary, and I credit it with giving me the final push which turned me vegan. It started to make me wonder if the family business I had always thought was an upstanding institution of the British countryside was actually an integral part of a regime of violence, abuse, torture, and death...

https://www.plantbasednews.org/post/a-farmers-daughter-speaks-out-dairy-is-an-everyday-dystopian-horror

Veganism is High in Moral Fibre

"There is now a great deal of convincing data that breeding animals for food dirties the air and chews up the earth... Vegans should be encouraged: their choice is high in moral as well as digestive fibre. Their detractors should stop crying over spelt milk."

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/sep/05/the-guardian-view-on-veganism-high-in-moral-fibre

"The future is there in front of us, but we must seize it together! There is no more time for excuses, no more time for complacency or apathy. Now is the time to come together, to fight together and to win together!"..
 

Why are the crucial questions about Hurricane Harvey not being asked?

To report the storm as if it were an entirely natural phenomenon, like last week’s eclipse of the sun, is to take a position. By failing to make the obvious link and talk about climate breakdown, media organisations ensure our greatest challenge goes unanswered. They help push the world towards catastrophe.

Hurricane Harvey offers a glimpse of a likely global future; a future whose average temperatures are as different from ours as ours are from those of the last ice age. It is a future in which emergency becomes the norm, and no state has the capacity to respond. It is a future in which, as a paper in the journal Environmental Research Letters notes, disasters like Houston’s occur in some cities several times a year. It is a future that, for people in countries such as Bangladesh, has already arrived, almost unremarked on by the rich world’s media. It is the act of not talking that makes this nightmare likely to materialise...

https://www.theguardian.com/commentisfree/2017/aug/29/hurricane-harvey-manmade-climate-disaster-world-catastrophe

Some Truth Telling to Progressives

The United Nations is finally conceding that what started as an ethical problem has metastasized into an existential threat to human beings. A U.N. report states that moving away from animal consumption is imperative to avoid the worst-case scenario for global poverty, hunger and climate change-related impacts.

We progressives are faced with a choice between living our stated ideology or upholding the status quo each time we sit down to a meal. A serious anti-oppression movement can’t have the bodies and byproducts of exploited beings on its plate while claiming moral superiority. If we continue to exploit animals while protesting oppression, then the conservatives are right about us — we’re a movement of hypocrites...

https://www.salon.com/2017/08/19/if-we-cannot-defend-animal-rights-we-do-not-deserve-to-call-ourselves-progressives_partner/

Why Climate Change Isn't Our Biggest Environmental Problem and Why Technology Won't Fix It

Our core ecological problem is not climate change. It is overshoot, of which global warming is a symptom. Overshoot is a systemic issue. Over the past century-and-a-half, enormous amounts of cheap energy from fossil fuels enabled the rapid growth of resource extraction, manufacturing, and consumption; and these in turn led to population increase, pollution, and loss of natural habitat and hence biodiversity. The human system expanded dramatically, overshooting Earth’s long-term carrying capacity for humans while upsetting the ecological systems we depend on for our survival. Until we understand and address this systemic imbalance, symptomatic treatment (doing what we can to reverse pollution dilemmas like climate change, trying to save threatened species, and hoping to feed a burgeoning population with genetically modified crops) will constitute an endlessly frustrating round of stopgap measures that are ultimately destined to fail...

The ecological argument is, at its core, a moral one—as I explain in more detail in a just-released manifesto replete with sidebars and graphics (“There’s No App for That: Technology and Morality in the Age of Climate Change, Overpopulation, and Biodiversity Loss”).  Any systems thinker who understands overshoot and prescribes powerdown as a treatment is effectively engaging in an intervention with an addictive behavior. Society is addicted to growth, and that’s having terrible consequences for the planet and, increasingly, for us as well. We have to change our collective and individual behavior and give up something we depend on—power over our environment. We must restrain ourselves, like an alcoholic foreswearing booze. That requires honesty and soul-searching....

http://www.postcarbon.org/why-climate-change-isnt-our-biggest-environmental-problem-and-why-technology-wont-save-us/

Why the Ocean Circulation is slowing down and must not

Arctic sea ice is not merely a passive responder to the climate changes occurring around the world, according to new research.

Scientists at Yale University and the University of Southampton say the ongoing Arctic ice loss can play an active role in altering one of the planet’s largest water circulation systems: the Atlantic Meridional Overturning Circulation (AMOC).

AMOC has a lower limb of dense, cold water that flows south from the north Atlantic, and an upper limb of warm, salty water that flows north from the south Atlantic as part of the Gulf Stream. AMOC plays a major role in regional and global climate, affecting the Atlantic rim countries — particularly those in Europe — and far beyond. It was featured in the movie “The Day After Tomorrow.”

https://news.yale.edu/2017/07/31/loss-arctic-sea-ice-impacting-atlantic-ocean-water-circulation-system

Here's why we must not let this happen...

Dr. Garth Davis on the common criticisms of What The Health

Editor’s Note: The popularity of the Netflix documentary “What the Health” has sparked a lively debate about the dangers of the standard American diet and the power of a plant-based lifestyle to prevent and reverse deadly diseases. Some of the film’s critics have alleged that doctors featured in “What the Health” are biased and pushing a pro-vegan agenda.

I wish people wouldn’t look at “What The Health” as doctors promoting a vegan agenda. There was no meeting of vegans where an agenda was planned for world domination.

Rather, we are physicians that, after years of research, reached the conclusion that Western medicine’s lack of emphasis on the importance of nutritional science has left the public at the mercy of industry and snake oil salesmen.

We are physicians that have realized, after ignoring the dogma we are fed, and after scrutinizing the science, that a plant-based diet is the best preventative medicine available.

https://www.forksoverknives.com/vegan-doctors-promoting-agenda-health/#gs.4REE0nA

Trees in the Amazon make their own rain

The Amazon rainforest is home to strange weather. One peculiarity is that rains begin 2 to 3 months before seasonal winds start to bring in moist air from the ocean. Now, researchers say they have finally figured out where this early moisture comes from: the trees themselves.

The study provides concrete data for something scientists had theorized for a long time, says Michael Keller, a forest ecologist and research scientist for the U.S. Forest Service based in Pasadena, California, who was not involved with the work. The evidence the team provides, he says, is “the smoking gun.”

Previous research showed early accumulation of moisture in the atmosphere over the Amazon, but scientists weren’t sure why. “All you can see is the water vapor, but you don’t know where it comes from,” says Rong Fu, a climate scientist at the University of California, Los Angeles. Satellite data showed that the increase coincided with a “greening” of the rainforest, or an increase in fresh leaves, leading researchers to suspect the moisture might be water vapor released during photosynthesis. In a process called transpiration, plants release water vapor from small pores on the underside of their leaves...

https://www.sciencemag.org/news/2017/08/trees-amazon-make-their-own-rain

The True Cost of Cattle

Oregon’s bovine businesses are booming.

Cattle, dairy and hay for livestock feed have topped Oregon’s list of highest grossing agricultural commodities for six years running, taking three of the top four slots each year. For two out of the past three years, live cattle for beef was Oregon’s No. 1 commodity in agriculture, the state’s second-largest industry.

This translates to a whopping 1.3 million cattle spread across the state among farms, ranches, feedlots and dairies, large and small. 

In Western Oregon, where the pasture is lush, it takes 2 acres to feed a single cow. East of the Cascades, where there isn’t much to nibble on, it takes vastly greater space, often on public lands and in direct competition with other wildlife that depend on scarce desert resources to survive.

Oregon is currently faced with uncertainty about its groundwater reserves and is falling far short of meeting its greenhouse gas reduction goals. At the same time, climate change is forcing the state into an era of more frequent droughts and a changing landscape. Is it wise to continue to pour limited resources into nourishing more than a million cattle?...

http://news.streetroots.org/2017/07/21/true-cost-cattle-street-roots-investigation

A Vegan Cure for Climate Change with Sailesh Rao

Experts say there is one single industry destroying the planet more than any other, but environmental organizations don’t want to address it. It’s the leading cause of climate change, among other problems. Despite the challenges we face on the planet, Sailesh Rao asks, what if the world doesn’t need to be changed? The world just needs to be understood. When we understand the world correctly, we will change ourselves and the world will change as a result.

http://www.empoweradio.com/home/shows/on-demand/dr-julie-show/812533-Vegan-Cure-for-Climate-Change-with-Sailesh-Rao.html

The Poison Papers

The “Poison Papers” represent a vast trove of rediscovered chemical industry and regulatory agency documents and correspondence stretching back to the 1920s. Taken as a whole, the papers show that both industry and regulators understood the extraordinary toxicity of many chemical products and worked together to conceal this information from the public and the press. These papers will transform our understanding of the hazards posed by certain chemicals on the market and the fraudulence of some of the regulatory processes relied upon to protect human health and the environment.

The Poison Papers are a compilation of over 20,000 documents obtained from federal agencies and chemical manufacturers via open records requests and public interest litigation. They include internal scientific studies and summaries of studies, internal memos and reports, meeting minutes, strategic discussions, and sworn testimonies. The majority of these documents have been scanned and digitized by us for the first time and represent nearly three tons of material. The regulatory agency sources of these documents include: the EPA, the USDA Forest Service, the FDA, the Veterans Administration, and the Department of Defense. Chemical manufacturers referenced in the documents include: Dow, Monsanto, DuPont, and Union Carbide, as well as many smaller manufacturers and the commercial testing companies who worked for them...

https://www.poisonpapers.org/the-poison-papers/