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The Real Threat to Hinduism: The Slow Death of India's Rivers

The Real Threat to Hinduism: The Slow Death of India's Rivers | Geography Education | Scoop.it

Hinduism shares an intricate, intimate relationship with the climate, geography, and biodiversity of South Asia; its festivals, deities, mythology, scriptures, calendar, rituals, and even superstitions are rooted in nature. There is a strong bond between Hinduism and South Asia’s forests, wildlife, rivers, seasons, mountains, soils, climate, and richly varied geography, which is manifest in the traditional layout of a typical Hindu household’s annual schedule. Hinduism’s existence is tied to all of these natural entities, and more prominently, to South Asia’s rivers.

 

Hinduism as a religion celebrates nature’s bounty, and what could be more representative of nature’s bounty than a river valley? South Asian rivers have sustained and nourished Hindu civilizations for centuries. They are responsible for our prosperous agriculture, timely monsoons, diverse aquatic ecosystems, riverine trade and commerce, and cultural richness.  Heavily dammed, drying in patches, infested by sand mafia and land grabbers, poisoned by untreated sewage and industrial waste, and hit by climate change — our rivers, the cradle of Hinduism, are in a sorry state.

 

If there is ever a threat to Hinduism, this is it. Destroy South Asia’s rivers and with it, Hinduism’s history and mythology will be destroyed. Rituals will turn into mockery, festivals, a farce, and Hinduism itself, a glaring example of man’s hypocritical relationship with nature. The fact that we worship our rivers as mothers and then choke them to death with all sorts of filth is already eminent.

Seth Dixon's insight:

This might be a controversial op-ed because it has a strong perspective on the religious and environmental dimensions of modern Indian politics...that said, I think it is well worth the read.  The Ganges is both a holy river, and a polluted river; that juxtaposition leads to many issues confronting India today. 

 

Tagsculturereligion, India, South Asia, Hinduism, pollution, industry,   environment, sustainability, consumption, fluvial

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Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 23, 12:36 PM
The threat to Hinduism seems to in a way be a self inflicted wound. Despite the bias of the article and some of the crackdowns on certain religious practices in India, the fact is that Hinduism's inseparable ties to nature and rivers puts it in a tenuous position as the population of India explodes. If something isn't done to preserve and clean up these rivers, Hinduism may be at risk of destroying itself both figuratively and possibly quite literally. 
Zavier Lineberger's curator insight, April 24, 12:57 PM
(South Asia) With a population of 1.3 billion people, India is bound to have serious problems with pollution. But pollution has a profound impact on a religion closely tied with nature and geographic locations for thousands of years. Rivers that were previously seen as the "nurturers of Hinduism" are now drying up because of climate change or are polluting the area. The destruction of Indian rivers is not given proper public attention and the loss of rivers could lead to the loss of Indian history and the meaning of Hindu culture.
Nicole Canova's curator insight, May 1, 1:21 AM
Religion is shaped by the geography of the region in which it develops.  For example, Hinduism is heavily influenced by the rivers of India, and these rivers are considered holy places sites and places of cleansing and purification.  However, the cleansing power of the rivers is diminished by pollution that makes it unsafe to take part in ritual bathing.  Pollution, climate change, and deforestation are also having an impact on other aspects of Hinduism, which is about celebrating nature in it's entirety, including monsoons, forests, and agriculture.  As nature continues to be negatively impacted by human activity, many aspects of Hinduism will also be negatively impacted.
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A Remote Paradise Island Is Now a Plastic Junkyard

A Remote Paradise Island Is Now a Plastic Junkyard | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Henderson Island is isolated and uninhabited—but its beaches are still covered in garbage.  

 

Henderson Island (article or podcast) is about the most remote place you can visit without leaving the planet. It sits squarely in the middle of the South Pacific, 3,500 miles from New Zealand in one direction and another 3,500 miles from South America in the other.  Henderson should be pristine. It is uninhabited. Tourists don’t go there. There’s no one around to drop any litter. The whole place was declared a World Heritage Site by the United Nations in 1988. The nearest settlement is 71 miles away, and has just 40 people on it. And yet, seafaring plastic has turned it into yet another of humanity’s scrapheaps.

 

Tags: pollutionOceaniawater, environmentsustainability, consumption.

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M Sullivan's curator insight, November 29, 2017 11:23 PM
Useful for the IDU topic of plastic single use water bottles.
Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 26, 1:49 PM
If I had looked at this picture without the context, I would think it was somewhere where people had stayed for a while and then left the place trashed with their own garbage.  In reality,  this is an island that is 3500 miles away from the nearest major settlement and doesn’t have any human inhabitants.  This really exemplifies that even though plastic waste may not be in one’s backyard, it never truly goes away.  Plastic is a material that cannot be broken down, so when it is dumped it just moves around until it hits land.  The article pointed out that plastic is incredibly difficult to clean up, particularly on places like Henderson Island.  When it floats in the ocean for a long time, it becomes brittle and breaks into very small fragments.  Those small fragments then mix with the sand and get buried, making it impossible to get rid of.  Another fact about this island that was shocking is that 3,750 pieces of litter wash up everyday, which is 100,000 times than other islands.  Henderson Island is not suitable for humans to live on, as there is no freshwater, frequent storms, and incredibly sharp terrain.  It is interesting that an island that keeps humans away can’t defend itself against plastic.  The reach of humans extends far beyond what they imagine and even uninhabitable land is infested with human waste.  No matter how remote a place is, it will still be effected by people.
Christina Caruso's curator insight, April 28, 2:55 PM
This picture is Henderson Island, its one of the most remote place you could visit without leaving the planet. It sits in the middle of the South Pacific, 3,500 miles from New Zealand in one direction and another 3,500 from South America in the other. The Island should be pristine, it is uninhabited.  Tourists don't go there and no one around to drop any little.  The whole beach is covered in litter
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Making cities sustainable with urban agriculture

Making cities sustainable with urban agriculture | Geography Education | Scoop.it
To reduce the pressure on the world's productive land and to help assure long-term food security, writes Herbert Girardet, city people are well advised to revive urban or peri-urban agriculture. While large cities will always have to import some food, local food growing is a key component of sustainable urban living.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Urban agriculture is right at the perfect intersection for human geographers who focus on both urban networks and food systems--clearly this is an important overlap that deserves a more detailed look. 

 

Tags: food, consumption, sustainability, socioeconomic, food desert, food, urban, unit 5 agriculture

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Matt Le Lacheur's curator insight, May 14, 2017 7:29 PM

This article links well with my Authentic Learning post on my blog http://mattgdlt.weebly.com/the-whiteboard.html . A unit of work could easily be designed around the concept of sustainable food in an urban environment. The topic links in to the year 9 content descriptor (ACSSU176) under Science Understanding Biological Science.

M Sullivan's curator insight, August 28, 2017 8:48 AM
Urban farming - an important factor in making megacities sustainable.
Deanna Wiist's curator insight, September 12, 2017 9:02 PM

Urban agriculture is right at the perfect intersection for human geographers who focus on both urban networks and food systems--clearly this is an important overlap that deserves a more detailed look. 

 

Tags: food, consumption, sustainability, socioeconomic, food desert, food, urban, unit 5 agriculture

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Why houses in Bermuda have white stepped roofs

Why houses in Bermuda have white stepped roofs | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The island of Bermuda has no fresh-water springs, rivers or lakes so the design of its roofs is essential for collecting rainwater.
Seth Dixon's insight:

This is such as distinct, localized example of how people adapt to their physical environment.  It explains why a particularly cultural landscape is prevalent, and the article nicely shows how traditional island living comes into conflict with tourist expectations and consumption patterns.  Tons of good geographic factors in this issue for students to analyze. 

 

Tags: water, tourism, sustainabilityarchitecture, consumption, landscape, Bermuda, environment adapt.

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Vultures, Environment, and Mapping Trash

"For generations we vultures, armed with our senses, have fought in silence. We’ve waged a battle against garbage, but now we’re losing that battle. We want to help humans, so we’ve launched a movement to help you detect piles of garbage so that you can take action to eliminate them. Join us in this fight. Vultures Warn, you take action!"

Seth Dixon's insight:

This video is an introduction to a fascinating (Spanish language) website and project that uses GPS-tagged vultures to map out the urban trash hot-spots in Lima, Peru.  We look at vultures as the dregs of the food chain and ascribe moral filthiness to the species (just think of any number of movie, literary, and cultural references), but they are simply filling an ecological niche.  This mapping project is a way to use vultures nature in a way that allows for humanity to fix our trash production/disposal problems.    

 

Tagspollution, PerudevelopmentmappingGPSbiogeography, environment, environment modify, South America, land use, megacities, urban ecology, consumption.

 

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Thirsty Yet? Eight Cities That Are Improbably Running out of Water

Thirsty Yet? Eight Cities That Are Improbably Running out of Water | Geography Education | Scoop.it
The amount of rainfall a place gets isn't the only factor in how much water is available to it. These major urban areas show how dire the coming global freshwater shortage could get.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Seen from space, this planet is a blue marble, a world where the surface is dominated by water.  The Pacific Ocean alone is nearly half of the surface area of our planet.  Add in polar ice caps and the rivers and lakes, we can see that water profoundly impacts Earth.  Yet most of that water is salt water (97%) and two-thirds of our non-salty water locked away in ice sheets (2% of the global water). Everything else, rivers, lakes, marshes, aquifers, and reservoirs represent that remaining 1% of the Earth's water supply--and that 1% of water is what sustains human settlements and allows for agricultural expansion.  The geography of this 1% is highly uneven and a huge water crisis can cause governments crumble--the fact that this precious resources has been wasted and polluted becomes more frustrating as water resources are being strained in so many places.  In this article, it  describes 8 major metro areas where water is being depleted rapidly -- Tokyo, Miami, London, Cairo, Sao Paulo, Beijing, Bangalore and Mexico City. 

 

Tags: urban, water, land use, megacities, urban ecology, consumption, environment, resources.

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Indonesia on Fire

"In Indonesia’s Central Kalimantan province, the peat areas are burning and emitting a toxic smoke causing untold damage to the environment, wildlife and human health. Most of the fires in Central Kalimantan are blazing in former peatland forests, which have been drained, cleared and burned for oil palm and agriculture, large and small. The dried-out peat ignites easily, burns underground and creeps under the surface. Experts from the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) travel to the heart of the fires to see the situation with their own eyes and measure the extent of the impact."
More information please visit: http://blog.cifor.org/fire

Seth Dixon's insight:
Extreme forest and peat burning in Indonesia has released over three times the annual fossil fuel emissions of the United Kingdom.
 
 
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Douglas Vance's curator insight, April 20, 1:05 PM
These fires are continuously devastating the Kalimantan province by releasing enormous quantities of greenhouse gasses every year into the atmosphere. There are some efforts underway to combat the damage of the fire by re-moistening the soil and trying to get wildlife and vegetation to take hold once again. However, that is an ongoing struggle and satellite technology continues to display the growing areas affected by these fires. 
brielle blais's curator insight, May 3, 3:36 PM
Burning things that emit a toxic smoke causes damages to not just one country, but many around them as well. This not only affects the environment and physical geography of a nation, but disturbs the political geography as other nations become enraged that the emitted smoke is a mystery and ruining health.
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Lawn Order

Lawn Order | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"In communities across America, lawns that are brown or overgrown are considered especially heinous. Elite squads of dedicated individuals have been deputized by their local governments or homeowners’ associations to take action against those whose lawns fail to meet community standards."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This is a great podcast from 99 Percent Invisible that shows not only the environmental aspects of America’s obsession with well-manicured lawns, it also nicely explored the cultural norms that police our behavior to create the stereotypical suburban landscape.  This is my favorite quote from the podcast: “There’s a paradox to the lawn. On the one hand, it is the pedestal on which sits the greatest symbol of the American Dream: the home, which people can ostensibly govern however they wish. And yet—homeowners often have almost no control over how they should maintain their lawn. Grass may be a plant, but a lawn is a designed object.”


Tags: housingneighborhood, cultural norms, consumption, water, environmenturban ecology, culture.


"When the well's dry, we know the worth of water." ~Benjamin Franklin

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Why the Saudis Are Going Solar

Why the Saudis Are Going Solar | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Saudi Arabia produces much of its electricity by burning oil, a practice that most countries abandoned long ago, reasoning that they could use coal and natural gas instead and save oil for transportation, an application for which there is no mainstream alternative. Most of Saudi Arabia’s power plants are colossally inefficient, as are its air conditioners, which consumed 70 percent of the kingdom’s electricity in 2013. Although the kingdom has just 30 million people, it is the world’s sixth-largest consumer of oil.Now, Saudi rulers say, things must change. Their motivation isn’t concern about global warming; the last thing they want is an end to the fossil-fuel era. Quite the contrary: they see investing in solar energy as a way to remain a global oil power. The Saudis burn about a quarter of the oil they produce—and their domestic consumption has been rising at an alarming 7 percent a year, nearly three times the rate of population growth.


TagsSaudi Arabiaenergy, resourcesconsumption, Middle East, sustainability.

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Dustin Fowler's curator insight, July 14, 2015 12:13 PM

A great article discussing energy reform in Saudi Arabia.  Another good source of information about some of the reforms being implemented in the kingdom can be found at this link:

 

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DVgWtOeWNgg

 

Interesting to see how this change in energy consumption will effect Saudi politics and the economy. 

Stephen Zimmett's curator insight, July 23, 2015 11:15 AM

Good for Saudi Arabia

Chris Costa's curator insight, October 21, 2015 2:29 PM

The irony here is palpable- if the Saudis overtake the US in terms of solar power, I think I'd lose hope for our future. The most infamous oil-state on the planet has recognized that its costly domestic consumption of its vast oil supplies is hurting its profits, and it would rather seek an alternative energy supply to fuel its own nation so that it can sell more oil to foreign investors. The logic here is actually very sound- Saudi Arabia knows that there is money to be made by cutting down their own oil consumption, and even if the world sees how successful they are in their own adoption of solar power as their main source of electricity, most of the West won't be willing to make the same transition when there's so much Saudi oil to buy. Everyone wins- except American consumers, of course. Oh, and the planet- the burning of fossil fuels is a serious problem our generation must tackle if we are to minimize the damages created by man-made global warming. In the short-term, nothing is set in stone, as we have no idea how successful the Saudis will be in their attempt to harvest solar power on such a large scale. However, the implications of this move is huge- I can only imagine what an influx of Saudi oil on the market would do for US gas prices. 

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Palm Oil Plantations Are Blamed For Many Evils. But Change Is Coming

Palm Oil Plantations Are Blamed For Many Evils. But Change Is Coming | Geography Education | Scoop.it
In Indonesia, efforts are underway to grow palms in a sustainable way. But that's putting a squeeze on small farmers.


Palm oil is in everything, from pizza dough and chocolate to laundry detergent and lipstick. Nongovernmental organizations blame it for contributing to assorted evils, from global warming to human rights abuses. But in the past year, this complex global industry has changed, as consumers put pressure on producers to show that they're not destroying forests, killing rare animals, grabbing land or exploiting workers.


Tags: Indonesia, conservation, environmentconsumption, SouthEastAsia, podcast.

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LEONARDO WILD's curator insight, May 3, 2015 9:00 AM

Will they also stop using Glyphosate to kill the old trees in order to plant new ones? Or use Glyphosate to keep the grass from growing in their fields? Sometimes the changes are more on the marketing side, than the actual day-to-day practices.

Chris Costa's curator insight, November 9, 2015 3:06 PM

Look at many household goods, and you can be sure to find palm oil in the list of its ingredients. It is one of the most commonly traded commodities in the world, but it has come under increasing scrutiny from both governmental and civilian groups concerned with the environmental and human impacts of the trade. Indonesia, one of the largest exporters of the good in the world, has made moves to make sure the continued exportation of the crop is sustainable, as they do not want to lose the revenue and job creation generated by the continued existence of the trade. Proponents of the crop argue that it takes less space to cultivate than any other competing vegetable oil, making it the easiest crop to sustain at current rates of demand. Environmentally, government and civilian groups have rallied against deforestation and have made strides to reverse the practice in regions both within Indonesia and in other areas as well.

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California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth

California Drought Tests History of Endless Growth | Geography Education | Scoop.it
A punishing drought is forcing a reconsideration of whether the aspiration of untrammeled growth that has for so long been the state’s engine has run against the limits of nature.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Major urban areas in California have limited local water resources so they draw water from large area to bring in sufficient water for these burgeoning metropolitan regions.  With this current drought getting worse, California has ordered emergency water restrictions on residents while companies and large farms have been granted exemptions even though they account for 82% of the state's annual water consumption (residential accounts for 12%). Almond farms alone consume 10% of the state's water, and many agricultural crops are incredibly water intensive land uses.  A better way to think of it isn't just about raw water usage though.  A better question to ask would be this--how does one gallon of water translate into calories that most efficiently feed people?


Questions to Ponder: How does the concept of carrying capacity relate to California urban growth/drought issues?  California passed its carrying capacity?  How are demographics, economics, politics and the environment intertwined in California?  What are the environmental limits on urban growth and development? 


Tags: physical, weather and climate, consumptionCalifornia, water, environment, resources, environment dependurban ecology.

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LEONARDO WILD's curator insight, April 9, 2015 8:49 AM

The mathematics of endless growth due to economic monetary rules has a clear outcome.

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McDonald's International

McDonald's International | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Seth Dixon's insight:

Think the McDonald's Menu is the same everywhere?  Think again.  A fantastic geography teacher compiled these images and descriptions of the McDonald's menu from around the world and put them into an ESRI storymap.  This interactive feature shows how a successful global brand like McDonald's should be keenly aware of local tastes and customs.  Some call that "glocalization." 


TagsESRI, foodculturediffusion, globalization, consumption, APHG.

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Jacob Crowell's curator insight, December 17, 2014 10:45 PM

We talk about McDonalds as a way of Americanizing the rest of the world. These foods show that it may still be the case but local culture is still infused and desired where McDonalds expands to.

Payton Sidney Dinwiddie 's curator insight, January 21, 2015 9:40 PM

This shows that mmcdonals is a global industy . there are many mcdonalds everywhere they put a spin oncertain diishes to match their heritage like in japan instead of hamburger meat like we americans use the use crabs.It just really shows how far mcdonalds was changed from just starting in america to being featured all over the globe

Kristin Mandsager San Bento's curator insight, January 22, 2015 7:06 PM

I've lived and traveled to a few places especially Asia.  I've had the Ramen at McD's in Hawaii along with the Portugeuse sausage that comes with the big breakfast.  I've also experienced Japanese McD's.  It was nice to be able to find some of the regular food like a burger and fry at any McD's in the world, but I never ordered anything else. 

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Cultural Patterns and Food

"Berlin Bureau Chief Michael Slackman looks into the obsession with currywurst, a popular street dish that combines sausage, ketchup and curry powder, and brings different Berliners together."

Seth Dixon's insight:

This short video has been added to the the interactive map, Place-Based Geography VideosThis depiction of street foods in German cities is a rich, tangible example to show cultural patterns and processes.  Currywurst is a unifying force across socioeconomic classes in Germany, but it is also a product of globalization and cultural interactions across regions.  Culture is not static and this New York Times video can be used to teach the various concepts of culture; per the updated APHG outline, the initial concepts of culture are:  

  • Culture traits
  • Diffusion patterns
  • Acculturation, assimilation and multiculturalism
  • Culture region, vernacular region, cultural hearth
  • Globalization and the effects of technology on culture.


Question to Ponder: How are these 5 major elements of culture seen in this video?


Tags: food, migration, culturediffusion, globalization, consumption, APHG.

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Adriene Mannas's curator insight, September 25, 2014 8:00 PM

Unit 3 Cultural Patterns and Processes

 

This video shows how many different cultures can be combined in one thing. It talks about the currywurst, one of the most popular German street foods, which is a combination of ideas and ingredients from all around the world including German sausage, American ketchup, and curry spices from India. 

 

This relates to the culture unit by showing how different cultures can come together and create something that is loved by a lot of people. With this people from a country can get a lot of different cultures together in this one meal and understand other cultures later that help.  

 

 

 

 

Courtney Barrowman's curator insight, October 1, 2014 11:08 PM

Unit 3

Joshua Mason's curator insight, March 16, 2015 2:43 PM

As of late, all I seem to hear about from Germany is their anti-Islam protests and their lack of desire to host more immigrants in their country. This video, though three years old, is a welcomed change to that news. 

Bizarre Foods' Andrew Zimmermen puts it best when he says that food is the best way to learn about a people and that there is no better way to perform a sort of "diplomacy" with a people than by sharing food. A dish that combines elements from Germany, America, and India is just one of those melting pot foods that shows that globalization can combine elements of food to make one dish that becomes quintessentially German. The idea that this is a democratizing dish is also interesting. With some foods being considered exclusively for the rich and likewise some for the poor, currywurst shows that people no matter social class can agree on one thing, which is good food.

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The 10 Worst River Basins Contributing to Ocean Plastics

The 10 Worst River Basins Contributing to Ocean Plastics | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"[A new paper], published in the journal Environmental Science and Technology, calculates that rivers contribute between 410,000 and 4 million tonnes a year to oceanic plastic debris, with 88 to 95% [of that total] coming from only 10. Those rivers are the Yangtze, Yellow, Hai He, Pearl, Amur and Mekong in east Asia, the Indus and Ganges Delta in south Asia, and the Niger and Nile in Africa."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Of river-based plastic pollution, these 10 rivers are responsible for 88%-95% of all the plastic gyrating in the world's oceans.  Improvement in these key places could make a world of difference in improving marine ecosystems (NOTE: the map came from this alternative article on the same subject).

 

Tags: pollution, water, environmentsustainability, consumption, fluvial.

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Matt Richardson's curator insight, January 3, 1:22 PM
Baltimore harbor has an odd contraption that is scooping plastic out of Jones Falls before it reaches the outer harbor. If only this machine could operate in these 10 river systems, which are contributing waste to our embattled/trashed/overfished/warming oceans. .
Matt Manish's curator insight, April 4, 12:44 PM
It struck me as odd to learn that the majority of plastic that winds up in the ocean isn't actually from ocean activities. Also, that these ten rivers contribute up to 88 to 95% of plastics in the ocean. This is a huge margin of these materials coming from these ten major river systems, most of them being in Asia. This makes me wonder why are mostly Asia's rivers carrying so much trash to ocean. It could be the major cities sitting along the banks that are dumping trash into the river and letting float down steam. Also, I wonder if there possibly isn't an efficient enough sanitation system set up in Asia which could lead to more people just throwing their trash into these rivers. To summarize, something from the data in this article tells me that their is a common denominator as to why most of the rivers that carry the largest amount of plastic materials to the ocean every year are located in Asia.
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The Fallacy of Endless Economic Growth

The Fallacy of Endless Economic Growth | Geography Education | Scoop.it
What economists around the world get wrong about the future.

 

The idea that economic growth can continue forever on a finite planet is the unifying faith of industrial civilization. That it is nonsensical in the extreme, a deluded fantasy, doesn't appear to bother us. We hear the holy truth in the decrees of elected officials, in the laments of economists about flagging GDP, in the authoritative pages of opinion, in the whirligig of advertising, at the World Bank and on Wall Street, in the prospectuses of globe-spanning corporations and in the halls of the smallest small-town chambers of commerce. Growth is sacrosanct. Growth will bring jobs and income, which allow us entry into the state of grace known as affluence, which permits us to consume more, providing more jobs for more people producing more goods and services so that the all-mighty economy can continue to grow. "Growth is our idol, our golden calf," Herman Daly, an economist known for his anti-growth heresies, told me recently.

 

Tagsop-ed, economicindustry, sustainability, development, consumption, climate change, environment, resources.

 

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The global food waste scandal

Western countries throw out nearly half of their food, not because it's inedible -- but because it doesn't look appealing. Tristram Stuart delves into the shocking data of wasted food, calling for a more responsible use of global resources.
Seth Dixon's insight:

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates. 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, TED, video, unit 5 agriculture.

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Sabrina Ortiz's curator insight, March 5, 2017 7:29 PM
My scoop it opinion piece was on global food waste. How globally food is thrown by the tons daily. Its audience is everyone and its purpose is to try to get people to open their eyes and waste less. America makes over four times the amount needed to feed its people. We are hurting the environment by making so much food that just go to waste. The purpose of this is to illustrate the huge issue we have with countries of people who don’t have food to begin with and here we are throwing away perfectly good food that could be use for these people or to feed pigs to make more meat. His exigence is all the food that could be use for other people or animals and its going to land fills daily. Its like a ticking time bomb hurting earth. His constraints are the laws set on food given to live stock in Europe and companies and the corporations that control the food. He urges people to use the amount of food they truly believe they will eat.
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Live chart: Fish stocks

"The world's fish are in danger—as is everyone who depends on them."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Every semester I share with my students this New York Times video about the rapid rise in industrial fishing and the production of Talapia.  Even with the rise of aquaculture as a major source of seafood, the world's oceans are still depleted.  As the world's population rises, many folk cultures with their roots in small fishing villages have transformed into primarily urban societies, but these urban societies still have a strong cultural preference for seafood and consume at levels that are not sustainable.    

 

Tags: environment modifyfolk culturesconsumption, water, physical.

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Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, July 6, 2016 1:24 AM

Impact of overfishing and ecosystem disruption on marine environments 

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Edible Cutlery

"India is one of the world's largest consumers of disposable plastic cutlery, which has the makings of a huge health and environmental crisis written all over it."

Seth Dixon's insight:

Plastics clog our landfills and single-use plastic consumption is one of the most wasteful elements of our consumer-based, disposable society.  This product is a reaction against the waste of disposable cutlery, but it is also an intriguing developmental strategy (see company kickstarter page or website). 

 

Tags: developmentfood, gender, agricultureconsumption, South Asia, pollution

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Rebecca Geevarghese's curator insight, May 8, 2016 6:27 AM
How innovative!! Will definitely being showing this to my Geography students. 
Katie Kershaw's curator insight, April 5, 2:05 PM
This video was really fascinating and brings up very good points about being environmentally friendly.  The creator of this edible cutlery noticed that there was a problem in India with the use of plastic cutlery.  He points out that it has been littering the area because of the high volume of usage of the product in India.  The problem with plastic cutlery is that it doesn't decompose, so people throw them out and they just sit there forever.  So the inventor of the edible cutlery came up with an ingenious solution to the plastic problem, he created a product that was incredibly ecological.  The cutlery is made of crops that are readily available and grown right in India.  This cuts down on waste transporting the materials to make the cutlery.  He also decided to use millet as the main material in the product because it takes significantly less water to grow than other crops he considered using.  The cutlery is completely biodegradable and 100% edible, so it has little impact on the environment once it is disposed of.  Another unique aspect of the cutlery is that it comes in a variety of flavors so it actually adds to the culinary experience.  Not only did the inventor come up with a great solution to pollution in India, but he has also helped spur the local economy by providing jobs to 9 lower class women.  This shows that even though pollution seems like a huge problem that effects the whole planet, the solution is not always as complicated as it seems.
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How ‘Ugly’ Fruits and Vegetables Can Help Solve World Hunger

How ‘Ugly’ Fruits and Vegetables Can Help Solve World Hunger | Geography Education | Scoop.it
About a third of the planet’s food goes to waste, often because of its looks. That’s enough to feed two billion people.
Seth Dixon's insight:

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions.  In a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates, food waste needs to made more explicit. 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, unit 5 agriculture.

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Katerina Stojanovski's curator insight, March 10, 2016 6:10 AM

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions.  In a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates, food waste needs to made more explicit. 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, unit 5 agriculture.

NADINE BURCHI SCORP's curator insight, March 10, 2016 1:24 PM

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions.  In a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates, food waste needs to made more explicit. 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, unit 5 agriculture.

Dawn Haas Tache's curator insight, March 11, 2016 9:29 PM
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The Ogallala Aquifer

The Ogallala Aquifer | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Hidden beneath the 245,000 square miles that make up the Great Plains, resides a lake that’s one of our greatest water assets: The Ogallala Aquifer. Haven’t heard of it? Farming the plains would be unprofitable at best without it, as shown by the Dust Bowl of the 1930s. At the time, the aquifer’s existence was known, but the technology to tap into it wasn’t.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Portions of the High Plains Aquifer are rapidly being depleted by farmers who are pumping too much water to irrigate their crops, particularly in the southern half in Kansas, Oklahoma and Texas.  This podcast explores the environmental and economic impacts of this unsustainable situation.


Tags: wateragriculture, environment, consumption, resources, environment depend, podcast.

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Food Waste

Producers, sellers, and consumers waste tons of food. John Oliver discusses the shocking amount of food we don’t eat.
Seth Dixon's insight:

Food waste is a tragedy that we all know happens, but the economic system does not work efficiently to maximize the global food production (Disclaimer: it is HBO's John Oliver, so there is some language and references that might not be appropriate for all audiences). 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, video, unit 5 agriculture.

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Jose Soto's curator insight, August 5, 2015 9:21 PM

Food waste is a tragedy that we all know happens, but the economic system does not work efficiently to maximize the global food production (Disclaimer: it is HBO's John Oliver, so there is some language and references that might not be appropriate for all audiences). 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, video, unit 5 agriculture.

Lorraine Chaffer's curator insight, August 6, 2015 4:20 AM

Food waste is a tragedy that we all know happens, but the economic system does not work efficiently to maximize the global food production (Disclaimer: it is HBO's John Oliver, so there is some language and references that might not be appropriate for all audiences). 


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, video, unit 5 agriculture.

Sue Byrnes's curator insight, August 6, 2015 6:06 PM

Food waste is a tragedy that we all know happens, but the economic system does not work efficiently to maximize the global food production (Disclaimer: it is HBO's John Oliver, so there is some language and references that might not be appropriate for all audiences). 

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, video, unit 5 agriculture.

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40 Ways The World Makes Awesome Hot Dogs

40 Ways The World Makes Awesome Hot Dogs | Geography Education | Scoop.it

"It’s not just a sausage in a bun; it’s a beautiful blank canvas. It’s a hot dog, which is a foodstuff eaten worldwide. Here are 40 distinctive varieties from around the globe — from iconic NYC 'dirty water dogs' to fully loaded South American street-cart dogs to Japanese octo-dogs. There is a tubesteak out there for every craving that ever was."

Seth Dixon's insight:

The 4th of July is the day of Coney Island's Hot Dog eating contest and the quintessential day to have a barbeque in the United States.  Some see the hot dog as a mere symbol of the uniformity of globalized culture in the 21st century that diffused out from the United States.  There is much more to be seen in the globalization of food.  Yes, the global goes to the whole world, but distinct places make this global cultural trait intensely local.  For example the hot dogs in Cincinnati are famous for being topped with chili and an obscene quantity of cheese, but in Costa Rica, I learned to love eating hot dogs deep fried, topped with cabbage, mayo and ketchup, just like the Ticos.  Food is but one example of this phenomena known as glocalization, where diffusion and divergence keep the world both global and local. 


Tagsfoodculturediffusion, globalization, consumption.

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Jose Soto's curator insight, August 5, 2015 9:50 PM

The 4th of July is the day of Coney Island's Hot Dog eating contest and the quintessential day to have a barbeque in the United States.  Some see the hot dog as a mere symbol of the uniformity of globalized culture in the 21st century that diffused out from the United States.  There is much more to be seen in the globalization of food.  Yes, the global goes to the whole world, but distinct places make this global cultural trait intensely local.  For example the hot dogs in Cincinnati are famous for being topped with chili and an obscene quantity of cheese, but in Costa Rica, I learned to love eating hot dogs deep fried, topped with cabbage, mayo and ketchup, just like the Ticos.  Food is but one example of this phenomena known as glocalization, where diffusion and divergence keep the world both global and local. 

 

Tags: food, culture, diffusion, globalization, consumption.

Adrian Bahan (MNPS)'s curator insight, March 14, 2016 8:10 PM

The 4th of July is the day of Coney Island's Hot Dog eating contest and the quintessential day to have a barbeque in the United States.  Some see the hot dog as a mere symbol of the uniformity of globalized culture in the 21st century that diffused out from the United States.  There is much more to be seen in the globalization of food.  Yes, the global goes to the whole world, but distinct places make this global cultural trait intensely local.  For example the hot dogs in Cincinnati are famous for being topped with chili and an obscene quantity of cheese, but in Costa Rica, I learned to love eating hot dogs deep fried, topped with cabbage, mayo and ketchup, just like the Ticos.  Food is but one example of this phenomena known as glocalization, where diffusion and divergence keep the world both global and local. 


Tags: food, culture, diffusion, globalization, consumption.

Mike Busarello's Digital Storybooks's curator insight, March 14, 2016 11:05 PM

The 4th of July is the day of Coney Island's Hot Dog eating contest and the quintessential day to have a barbeque in the United States.  Some see the hot dog as a mere symbol of the uniformity of globalized culture in the 21st century that diffused out from the United States.  There is much more to be seen in the globalization of food.  Yes, the global goes to the whole world, but distinct places make this global cultural trait intensely local.  For example the hot dogs in Cincinnati are famous for being topped with chili and an obscene quantity of cheese, but in Costa Rica, I learned to love eating hot dogs deep fried, topped with cabbage, mayo and ketchup, just like the Ticos.  Food is but one example of this phenomena known as glocalization, where diffusion and divergence keep the world both global and local. 


Tags: food, culture, diffusion, globalization, consumption.

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How to fix California's drought problem

How to fix California's drought problem | Geography Education | Scoop.it
California has enough water—that's not the problem, says Terry Tamminen. So here's how you solve the drought crisis.
Seth Dixon's insight:

There is no easy fix to a complex problem such as the water shortage in California.  Some coastal cities are considering desalinization projects while others want to reduce environmental regulations that protect wetland ecosystems to harness all of the freshwater available.  One of the issues is that most of California's precipitation occurs during a very short time frame.  Before the water crisis, these potential flood waters were diverted into concrete management canals but this article advocates to build more underground cisterns to capture excess rainfall before it flows to the ocean.   


Tags: consumptionCalifornia, water, environment, resources, environment dependurban ecology.


"When the well's dry, we know the worth of water." ~Benjamin Franklin

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Eden Eaves's curator insight, May 24, 2015 5:50 PM

The sunny state of California does in fact get enough rain fall each year but because storm sewers were built after continuous flooding, all of this rainfall is pushed into the Pacific Ocean rather than where it it needed now.

A solution to the insane drought taking California by storm is to use simple rain barrels to collect water at a typical home and a graded lawn to capture and retain water, allowing it to seep into the ground rather than run off into the streets and eventually into the ocean. 

Lydia Tsao's curator insight, May 25, 2015 2:20 AM

The article relates to irrigation and the conservation efforts discussed in Unit 5. Irrigation has a lot to do with the drought in California because massive amounts of water are being used for agriculture in California, which consists of water-needy fruits and vegetables. There are efforts to try to conserve water by installing rainwater collectors to reuse water instead of just draining usable rainwater to the ocean and rivers. There have also been installations of grey water pipes to reuse for irrigation. Grey water is any water that is flushed down the drain that isn't sewage, such as water from showers or water from washing machines. This way water wouldn't have to be wasted and can be reused.

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Here's what 9,000 years of breeding has done to corn, peaches, and other crops

Here's what 9,000 years of breeding has done to corn, peaches, and other crops | Geography Education | Scoop.it
Corn, watermelon, and peaches were unrecognizable 8,000 years ago.
Seth Dixon's insight:

I think the term 'artificial' in the image might be misleading and it depends on your definition of the word.  Humans have been selectively breed plants and animals for as long as we've been able to domestic them; that is a 'natural' part of our cultural ecology and has lead to great varieties of crops that are much more suitable for human consumption than what was naturally available.  Long before climate change, humans have been actively shaping their environment and the ecological inputs in the systems with the technology that their disposal.  This is a good resource to teach about the 1st agricultural revolution.     


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, unit 5 agriculture.

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Emerald Pina's curator insight, March 22, 2015 9:39 PM

This article shows how crops were entirely different 8,000 years ago. It shows how much we have breeded and affected the natural crops. With the example of peaches, watermelons, and corn, the article shows how the natural crop didn't taste as good and was a lot smaller. The natural peach had 64% edible food; whereas the 2014 peach had 90% edible food. The pictures comparing the natural and artificial crops also illustrated how the many varieties of that specific crop had grown and where the crop is found has grown. Lastly, the diagrams compares the water and sugar percentages. This article paints a good picture as to how much mankind has affected our land and agriculture. Also, how much our crops have changed due to selective breeding.

 

The article gives a good illustration of topics in Unit 5: Agriculture, Food Production, and Rural Land Use. The article shows how selective breeding has affected many crops. It gives a good view as to how selective breeding and agriculture has been affected and changed in the Neolithic Agriculture Revolution. The article explains what what life was like and how it changed in the Neolithic times. This article is really interesting in showing how crops were changed.

BrianCaldwell7's curator insight, March 16, 2016 3:41 PM

I think the term 'artificial' in the image might be misleading and it depends on your definition of the word.  Humans have been selectively breed plants and animals for as long as we've been able to domestic them; that is a 'natural' part of our cultural ecology and has lead to great varieties of crops that are much more suitable for human consumption than what was naturally available.  Long before climate change, humans have been actively shaping their environment and the ecological inputs in the systems with the technology that their disposal.  This is a good resource to teach about the 1st agricultural revolution.     

 

Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, unit 5 agriculture.

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Waging War Against Global Food Waste

Waging War Against Global Food Waste | Geography Education | Scoop.it
National Geographic Emerging Explorer Tristram Stuart wants the world to stop throwing away so much good food.
Seth Dixon's insight:

No one should be surprised that more developed societies are more wasteful societies.  It is not just personal wasting of food at the house and restaurants that are the problem.  Perfectly edible food is thrown out due to size (smaller than standards but perfectly normal), cosmetics (Bananas that are shaped 'funny') and costumer preference (discarded bread crust).  This is an intriguing perceptive on our consumptive culture, but it also is helpful in framing issues such as sustainability and human and environmental interactions in a technologically advanced societies that are often removed form the land where the food they eat originates.   You can hear more about Tristram's work in this TED talk


Tags: food, agriculture, consumption, sustainability, unit 5 agriculture.

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Deborah Jones's curator insight, October 25, 2014 9:58 AM

PSA

Rebecca McClure's curator insight, November 15, 2014 11:13 PM

Year 9: Food Security

Alex Lewis's curator insight, November 21, 2014 12:18 PM

I think this is a great idea, and the more we reduce our food waste, the better. We can use this food to feed the starving, which would solve two problems at once. Also, the idea of feeding the excess food to the pigs is a good idea. Not as good as conserving the food to give to the needy though.