23 03, 2016

Benefits of Rooftop Gardening

By | 2017-03-28T08:43:48+00:00 March 23rd, 2016|City Smart, Green Tech, Nature|0 Comments

How does the food we eat end up on our dining table? Young kids might be forgiven for thinking food actually grows in supermarkets. Only if it were that simple. So what steps are involved until the food ends up on your table and how does it impact environment during the journey? The concept of food miles is used to assess the environmental impact from the time of production of food until it reaches the consumer. Farming sector in crisis The distress in the farm sector owing to factors like excess rainfall, unavailability of farm labour, crop failure, and lack [...]

24 09, 2014

Think forest, when you think energy

By | 2014-09-24T06:39:32+00:00 September 24th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

How do we save energy in every area of our lives—at home, in our offices, our factories, hotels and hospitals? We read sometimes of energy savings being tried out in cars and other vehicles. So what can the government do, what can you influence within your workspace, to make efficiency one of our biggest tools in the fight against hurting the planet. Remember that every MWh of power we use means 1 ton of coal that is extracted in some forest land. A city like Bombay alone uses 30,000 MWh a day while Bangalore’s consumption is at 18,000 MWh. India [...]

20 09, 2014

You can do it right at home

By | 2017-03-28T08:44:23+00:00 September 20th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

Vegetable peelings and other waste from your kitchen that you would ordinarily discard, make one of the best materials for preparing rich compost for your kitchen garden. You could go about it in a number of different ways: there is the Indore method, Sheet composting, vermicomposting, Bokashi composting, Compost tea, among others. An easy alternative from among traditional methods is to use compost bins, which save effort and time. Well-designed and affordable compost bins are available from Bangalore-based organisation Daily Dump. They offer a variety of bins suited for different amounts of kitchen waste and garden waste, or combinations of [...]

19 09, 2014

New face of farming

By | 2014-09-19T06:41:51+00:00 September 19th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

There was a time when the word 'farming' brought up visions of fields on end filled with swaying green crops, hardy farmers moving through them, spending long hours of hard work watering, harvesting, fertilising. Somehow, it was an activity totally restricted to the vast fields of land in the villages of the world. Of India’s 2.94 million sq km of land mass, approximately 1.1 million sq km is used for agricultural food production. Recent times have seen the birth of a revolutionary kind of farming, completely opposing this conventional picture. Urban farming, rooftop agriculture, kitchen gardens, etc., are the new [...]

10 09, 2014

Who pays for whose needs?

By | 2017-03-28T08:44:26+00:00 September 10th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

So how much of the Earth’s resources does each of us actually use? An estimate puts the figure at four to six hectares of land to maintain the consumption of the average person from a high-consumption country. How much do we have? In 1990, the global average was just 1.7 hectares of ecologically productive land per person. What are we doing? The core countries, which are rich in the natural resources we require, are being exploited far beyond their regenerative capacity, and these resources are being shipped to the other peripheral high-consumption countries. What does this leave us with? Someone, [...]

8 09, 2014

The big guzzlers

By | 2014-09-08T06:46:30+00:00 September 8th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

History shows that the ancients had systems by which the wealthy, ruling class of people engaged in unbridled consumption while they ensured the poor were kept away from consuming through religious dictates, sometimes societal rules, as extraction of resources were not as technologically advanced as it is today. But the bottom line was (and still is) that a small group of people control the way the rest of us feel we need to consume. The wealthy have taken on roles of ensuring that we now have a “producing economy” that has to per se induce “need” in the minds of [...]

6 09, 2014

It’s in our hands.

By | 2014-09-06T06:47:39+00:00 September 6th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

The base for all induced consumption patterns seems to lie in the fact that people are further getting distanced from producing for their own needs. What gets produced by the producer seems to be better than what one can produce by oneself. We can travel less, grow our own veggies with a neat terrace garden, dispose less, use less disposables, use organic food and reduce the chemical load on our rivers and water bank, avoid using virgin wood, use recycled paper and other materials. We could also get smart and create a consumer-positive market, like the Japanese businessman Takuhira Kanekowho [...]

5 09, 2014

Why only tigers? What about peacocks?

By | 2014-09-05T06:48:08+00:00 September 5th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

Tiger continues to be the cynosure of the government's conservationist efforts. Is it because tiger is our national animal? If so, what about peacock, the national bird? The rampant killing of this beautiful bird continues unabated for its feathers in India. Similarly, there are many species that are on the verge of extinction or endangered and also as important as tigers for the balance of ecosystems. But other animals such as elephants, musk deer, Tibetan antelope, rhinoceros, red panda, Ganges river dolphin, etc., are not getting equal attention and care. (Courtesy: Avilash Roul, The Hindu)

2 09, 2014

A wonder called ‘spirulina’!

By | 2017-03-28T08:44:31+00:00 September 2nd, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

Hailed a few years ago as ‘superfood’, spirulina has once again drifted into the background of a noisy civilisation. What is it? It is a blue-green algae, one among the family of the earliest forms of life on earth. Its use is not at all modern. The Aztecs called it Tecuitlatl, meaning stone's excrement, and used it in the form of dried tablets. What is it famous for? It contains the highest amount of protein of all available food – 60%. Further, it is a ‘complete’ protein, consisting of all the amino acids required by the body – something most [...]

30 08, 2014

Demand Right to Protect our Forests

By | 2017-03-28T08:44:46+00:00 August 30th, 2014|Nature|0 Comments

Among the slew of scams that are coming to surface in recent months is the new Black Scam that broke out this week : of a Rs 40 lakh-crore scandal that goes right up to the PM Office and involves the rich coal belts and the potential destruction of large forest tracts for mining. It reminds us of Ecuador’s successful effort last year to rewrite the very Constitution and approve articles that recognize rights for Nature and Ecosystems. Some of the important clauses now included in the Constitution are : •Every person or community will have the right to demand [...]