PLANNED to perfection, Canberra celebrates a century as a city in 2013. Australia's capital wasn't designed to look good from space, but like other planned cities, the aerial perspective is magnificent.
In the developed world, an urban village is a planned neighbourhood where residents can walk, cycle, or use public transport to go about their essential activities. Urban villages of the developing world differ somewhat.
Choosing sustainable building materials and systems goes beyond considering durability. We need to take life cycle analysis and supply chain into account, and specify the most appropriate materials for a project – the least polluting, most easily recyclable, most energy efficient (least embodied energy) – and from sustainable sources. (...)
The zero waste ethos is a big call, radical in its ramifications, and it requires more than a top-down, government-imposed approach. To be successful, zero waste needs to be embraced and implemented by citizens and community groups, business and industry.
It is already technologically possible to build a zero-waste and zero-carbon-emission city.
The question is – are we willing to do so and transform from consumers to citizens?
Chooks are the most useful pets that you can have. For starters, they are the ultimate food recyclers and can help you cut down on food waste in your home. We currently waste more than $1.1 billion in fresh fruit and vegetables every year in Australia. In landfill, this decomposing food produces methane gas, which is a greenhouse gas twenty five times more dangerous than carbon dioxide. But, if every Australian recycled their own food waste, we could reduce waste output by one tonne per person every year. Sounds simple, doesn't it? (...)
Chooks do a lot more than just recycle food waste. Eggs are one of the most nutrient-dense foods that you can eat. And the ones produced in your own backyard are even better. Chickens living off a natural diet of leafy green vegetables, bugs, grubs and grains have been shown to contain nutrient-dense eggs filled with more health-promoting omega 3 fats, important fat-soluble vitamins and healthy antioxidants. And this is why backyard eggs are so much better than store-bought ones. You can feed your hens the ultimate diet for next to nothing and reap the rewards of the best quality eggs available. (...)
In my view, a sustainable future in Australia won't just involve carbon-saving light-bulbs, energy efficient insulation and water-saving dishwashers, it will also be about how we use all the resources that we have. Sure, I love rose-filled gardens and sparse green lawns where I can lie down unencumbered by chicken poop or overgrowing vegetables. But the reality is, we cannot continue to be so wasteful. Suburbia in Australia is an untapped resource of unused land and sprawling green lawns. It needs to be harnessed for its true potential: keeping chooks, growing vegetables or planting fruit trees. Not only will we be living a lot less wastefully, we will also be much healthier for it too. (...)
via – Opinion – ABC Environment (Australian Broadcasting Corporation)
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