Renewable energy takes a new turn, as our four legged friends help “keep the lights on” in Boston. If you live in the Boston area, be sure to visit the “Park Spark Project” located just a few blocks from MIT. Part art project, part science experiment, the Park Spark project transforms dog waste into energy (methane) through a publicly fed methane digester. Interactive and thought provoking, it helps us think about where our waste goes, as well as the waste of our four legged friends. Shouldn’t there be a viable and useful alternative to a plastic bag filled with dog poop rotting in a landfill for millennia?
Do you “tweet,” do the kids in your life? If you know someone who does, tell them to send a “tweet” and add a “bee” to the beard of UK Prime Minister David Cameron, you don’ t even need to be British to do it! Talk to your kids and learn more about how essential honeybees are to modern agriculture. In fact, without bees up to 1/3 of all our cultivated crops wouldn’t grow. Colony Collapse Disorder (a recent phenomenon where bees are “disappearing” and not returning to their hives) is a real and worrying concern to scientists, beekeepers and farmers, the world over; and it is a phenomenon that is not fully understood. Talk to your kids about it. We are impacting our environment in ways that we don’t realize nor do we make the connections between these impacts, climate change and their implications for our food security.
Environmental education initiatives are increasingly part of children’s school curriculum, all over the world, and this week the State of Maryland became one of the few places in the USA where environmental education will be a state mandated requirement! As we become more and more removed from our natural world, and our kids, more and more, only “see” and experience our natural world on TV, the web, or a sports field, the opportunities for actual connections to our environment become more important. As our world becomes more threatened we need to remain connected to it, in order to want to heal it. For related discussions, check out Climate Mama’s reading list, and Richard Louv’s, “Last Child in the Woods” a must read for parents concerned about our environment.
And finally this week, if you live in Chicago, Seattle or Washington DC, register so you can join the National Wildlife Federation’s upcoming “Hike and Seek” extravaganza, taking place October 2 and 16th. Join in on a fun family adventure, part hike, part scavenger hunt; Hike and Seek is an opportunity to spend time outdoors with the kids in your life, creating memories and experiencing nature with friends, family and of course, “Ranger Rick.”