Category: Environment

Living Oceans Society 10th Anniversary

By , 15 October 2008 18:28

I donated a bokashi bucket to the Living Oceans Society‘s silent auction

Living Oceans Society is Canada’s largest organization focusing exclusively on marine conservation issues. We are based in Sointula, a small fishing village on the Central Coast of British Columbia.

Living in a coastal community, we are reminded each day that it’s not just about the fish—it’s about the fish and the people. Living Oceans Society believes that people are part of the environment and that by protecting the B.C. coastal ecosystem, we can build sustainable communities today and for our children.

Since Jennifer Lash started Living Oceans Society in 1998, we have advocated for oceans that are managed for the common good, according to science-based policies that consider entire ecosystems.

I’m in good company with many other businesses contributing to a great cause:

Living Oceans Society – Join us in Celebrating Our 10th Anniversary!


What's the worst that could happen?

By , 7 November 2007 09:58

With that question, wonderingmind42 -“a high school science teacher in the process of burning out” begins a 10 minute lecture on climate change / global warming and the consequences of doing nothing. Rightly so, he titles his video “Most Terrifying Video You’ll Ever See [and the most important]”

Stop Press!

DON’T WATCH THIS VIDEO [the link above]. I’m serious. This message isn’t a hack (I’m the guy in the video), and it’s not a ploy to get you to actually watch it (reverse psychology).

It’s just that there’s a hole in this argument big enough to drive a Hummer through because of an assumption I didn’t realize I had (isn’t that just the way with assumptions. . .), and the argument has been UPDATED to address that hole.

So instead of watching this old, tired, hole-y video, go watch the NEW, IMPROVED version

The cost of doing nothing is a lot more expensive and disastrous. Click, watch and share with everyone.

Then do something – change public policy – to avoid the negative [far worse] scenarios.

Click through to YouTube to see all the supporting material.

View of wind farm from the air

By , 9 October 2007 23:44

Flying from Toronto to Vancouver today, I saw this out the window:

PrinceWind 09oct07

I’m 30,000 feet in the air. With 3x optical zoom, here’s the view from 10,000 feet:

PrinceWindCloseup 09oct07

This is a ground level perspective:

The circle is a person standing in the middle of the road. Get more views on the size of this wind turbine from the source:…

Official website: Brookfield Power

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Hurry up and wait 2 hours

By , 9 September 2007 09:52

My neighbour was storing her trash on the porch of her house since the Vancouver municipal workers strike began almost two months ago. It wasn’t a problem for me because I did not know about that until Tuesday when I went up there and noticed the flies and smell.

I used a C.A.N. vehicle on Thursday and went over to the North Shore Transfer Station

Both CBC Vancouver and CKNW decided that this was a major story Thursday, so it was a bit weird to be in the lineup that they were talking about during their broadcasts.

0734 06Sep07

At the Dollarton Hwy bridge. The turnoff to the North Vancouver Transfer Station is just past the trees, but traffic control makes me go down three stop lights, do a U turn and wait in line.

0832 06Sep07

An hour later, I am now on the road leading directly to the the NVTS.

0853 06Sep07

Someone else thinks it is important to get a picture of this lineup from a different angle

0903 06Sep07

0939 06Sep07

Two hours later, in the facility itself. They load trucks like this to take to the interior of BC and return with wood chips.

0943 06sep07

With the strike on, they have to fill any kind of truck with waste and coming back with an empty load. Not very cost effective there.

0944 06Sep07

Almost in the cave

0948 06Sep07

Finally dumped my garbage after more than 2 hours in line and almost 3 hours on the road. Notice the steam/smoke rising from the mound in the top right corner. The stench is overwhelming and because the effluent is everywhere. My shoes ended up stinking in the vehicle after I left. I cleaned it up.

P.S. I turned the vehicle off every time I was stopped in line.

P.P.S. My neighbour now has a bokashi bucket.

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

All is not as it seems

By , 4 July 2007 23:04

I walk by it dozens of times a week near my workplace.

A typical landscape treatment at an Esso gas station at Broadway and Burrard.

Esso Landscaping

Nothing that special. A few evergreen plants and wood chips as mulch. But today when I looked down, I could read something on the chips. What???

Esso Landscaping Detail

“Steel Radial” – not a wood chip at all. Is it safe?

Apparently “Landscape Rubber Mulch Chunks” are used in playgrounds too.

Well, I’m glad to see tires being reused like this instead of burning them for power generation.

Vancity Bike Share – Take it. Ride it. Pass it on.

By , 26 June 2007 10:00

Vancity Bike Share |

Take it. Ride it. Pass it on.

Welcome to the home of the Vancity Bike Share – a community experiment.

Vancity Bike Share wants to see you to get on a bike, share it with others and spread the word about cycling. It is a chance to try alternative transportation, increase your daily exercise and share with your community. is your Vancity Bike Share home base. Currently, we are looking for people who want to participate in this experiment. If you’d like to get your hands on one of our bikes, click here.

Launch party:

Come eat some pancakes and watch as the Vancity Bike Share takes its first pedal!

June 27, 2007
7:30am-9:00am (BEST’s Pancake Breakfast)
9:00am – 9:30am (Launch of Vancity’s Bike Share)
200 Granville Street (Granville Square – just west of Waterfront Station)

Bike Share #1 - want one?

Bike Share #5

Work colleagues on their new bikes:
Riaz & David #2

Metropolis at Metrotown offers free e-waste recycling until 22 April 07

By , 18 April 2007 07:37

I found this on Vancouver Craigslist

Earth Day coming up on Saturday…. Boy are they in for a surprise with the amount of stuff that will show up.

Metropolis at Metrotown

Got Old Electronics? Anyone with old computers, printers and electronics is encouraged to drop by Metropolis at Metrotown’s Atrium Court between April 16 -22. Metropolis at Metrotown will recycle all electronics for free!

Bonus: “What’s more? Get a free herb planter in exchange for electronics and help lower Greenhouse Gas Emissions while quantities last!”

ACCEPTABLE – Electronics

  • Telecommunications equipment
  • Telephone systems
  • All Television types
  • VCR’s
  • 3M Players
  • Electronic games
  • Sony Play Stations 1 – 2 – 3
  • Radios
  • CD Players
  • Cellular phones
  • PC (personal computer)
  • Monitors CRT’s
  • Mainframe computers
  • Scanners
  • Printers
  • Fax Machines
  • Photocopiers
  • Scientific equipment
  • Toner cartridges
  • Photographic sound & visual recording equipment
  • Cameras
  • Car stereos
  • Electric ballasts
  • Electronic wiring
  • Power cables
  • Irons
  • Watches

Time: 10:00 am – 9:00 pm Mon – Fri

9:30 am – 9:00 pm Sat

11:00 am – 6:00 pm Sun

Location: Atrium Court. Ground Level

Other resources for e-waste recycling:

Alternative Disposal & Recycling Locations

e-waste end of life electronic equipment

Starting in 2008 all e-waste in the GVRD will be banned from landfill sites:

Cross-posted at

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , , , ,

Local Cooling helps reduce computer energy use and shows savings

By , 17 February 2007 13:53

Update: Added third paragraph from LC in quote and Reality Check

Yes I know, techies/geeks can adjust shutdown options on their computers to save energy. I do it too. This application tracks how many computers are using their program and the net energy savings in terms of KWhs, gallons of oil [barrels would be better – divide by 55] and the number of trees needed to balance the now saved carbon emissions.

As a beta program, right now the stats are basic and don’t include the number of computers that team and/or companies have using the program, but I have a fix for that. See below.

More than 30 billion kilowatt-hours of energy is wasted because many of us simply forget to shut down our computers when we’re not using them. If we could just improve the efficiency of how we use our PCs, the savings in energy costs would be over $3 billion dollars! The CO2 emissions from just 15 computers are equivalent in energy terms to the gas consumption used by one car.


By adjusting the power mode settings our advanced algorithms will predict how much you will save based on past PC usage and statistical data. Every time LocalCooling saves power by either turning of your screen, putting your hard drive to sleep when not used or shutting down your PC when you are away your savings stats will start to grow. Download LocalCooling today and optimize your PC’s energy efficiency in minutes.

Our goal is to introduce 100,000,000 PC users into the Local Cooling community. If just 100 million of us optimize the efficiency of our computers’ energy consumption, we could prevent over 300 billion kg of CO2 gas emissions, equivalent to over 1.8 billion gallons of oil, in just the first year alone.*

Team challenge

When you create your profile, in the form field that says “Join a group” put ChangeEverythingFriends

Send an email to aapATgreatdayDOTca with your stats feed after you install the program and I will add you to this team page which also shows you how to turn of the beep sounds the program makes.

For people and companies with multiple computers:

You download the program and login with the same account on all computers. Once you have been running the application on all systems this will be stated in your account view. This will add all your savings from all computers to your account.

Tell me how many computers you are running.

TreeHugger gives a lukewarm review, but the comments are more positive.

*Reality check: 1.8 billion gallons of oil is equivalent to 42,857,142 barrels of oil. LC uses gallons to make their numbers look bigger. According to US Dept of Energy November 2006 statistics, the US consumes 20,802,000 barrels/day, so 100,000,000 computers for a year on LocalCooling will save two days U.S. oil consumption.

Obviously a lot more has to be done to solve the problems of global warming, but I have to start somewhere.

More stats:

Annual U.S. oil consumption 7,592,730,000 barrels
Local Cooling savings as a percentage: 0.56

World oil consumption: 83,990,000 barrels/day
Annually: 30,656,350,000
Local Cooling savings as a percentage: 0.13

oil consumption: 2,280,000 barrels/day
Annually: 832,200,000
Local Cooling savings as a percentage: 5.14

Are there 100,000,000 computers in Canada?:-)

Cross-posted to
Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

UK Observer – The Low-Carbon Diet (or how to lose half a tonne in just one month)

By , 21 January 2007 13:01

Interesting article from The Observer in the UK. Filled with many links to websites offering environmental solutions, including bokashi. Using the formula in the article, composting reduces the average UK citizen carbon footprint by 443 ‘carbs’ or about 5% on a monthly basis

Lucy Siegle offers 36 positive suggestions on how we can reduce carbon emissions | Magazine | The Observer

If you follow the diet described below, you will be taking the first steps to reducing the size of the one thing you have direct control over – your carbon footprint. Almost every aspect of your life affects the size of your carbon footprint. Leaving some appliances plugged in, for instance, increases energy consumption, and this increases the amount of fossil fuels burnt in power stations, which affects the amount of CO2 emitted into the atmosphere. Other aspects of your lifestyle affect your carbon footprint in less obvious ways: your kids, for example, may have plastic toys produced in China – in which case China has emitted the CO2 on your behalf.

What is a carb?

To make the diet user-friendly, we have developed our own unit of measurement: the carb. One carb represents 100g of CO2. The aim is to lose as many carbs as possible until you meet your target ‘weight’. As the average person is responsible for emitting 11 tonnes of carbon a year we have divided this by 12 to produce a monthly figure of 9,167 carbs. This is your starting ‘weight’.

Money quote:

Divert your food waste from landfill where it emits methane. One quarter of the average binful is made up of organic waste. Instead, put it in a wormery (, introduce a bokashi food-composting bin ( or install a green cone ( 433 Carbs

Read it all….

Technorati Tags: , , , , , , , ,

Panorama Theme by Themocracy