Biden’s Plan To Reduce Greenhouse Emissions 50% by 2030

Joe Biden announced that the United States goal is to reduce greenhouse emissions by 50% by 2030.  Is this an achievable goal? Will our daily lives change trying to achieve this goal? Reducing greenhouse emissions 50% by 2030 is highly ambitious-double the goal set during the Obama administration. On top of that, the Trump Administration backtracked on environmental progress by leaving the Paris Climate Agreement. Joe Biden has a serious amount of work to get done to reach this goal, however, it IS necessary, and it IS possible.

The greenhouse effect is when greenhouse gases get trapped in the atmosphere, and as a result, heating the Earth. What will happen if we do not reduce emissions? For most reliable basic information, visit WorldWildlife.Org. Sea levels will rise effecting over 1 billion people by 2050, yes that is in our lifetime. Heatwaves, flooding, and destruction of habitats of plants and animals will be destroyed. The artic will no longer exist. Air pollution is progressively getting worse. So what do we do?

Biden’s first step towards turning the economy green is to tackle the infrastructure. The main part of the infrastructure talked about so far is flipping the transportation industry. During initial talks and interviews, skeptics claim that Biden and Congress do not have a concrete plan because the Administration has not given details to the press on how to reach this goal. The common consensus regarding this “plan” is that it will take multiple pathways, and multiple levels. This means there is no yes or no answer that will make the population satisfied.

One thing to consider is the status of the climate that Biden was given. His predecessor gave Biden 4 years of careless environmental decisions that Biden is responsible for repairing and catching up on. There are VARIOUS sectors that need to be environmentally improved, so it would be impossible to go over a detailed plan from jump. Biden picked a starting point; working on the infrastructure, and will reveal more details as the situation develops itself.

According to Biden, turning the country green will be great for the economy by creating jobs. There is much talk of Biden wanting auto mechanics to become energy vehicle mechanics, and engineers developing charging stations throughout cities for this new vision. The auto-industry is on board with switching to electric cars for the future. According to wbur.org’s article “How to Cut U.S. Emissions in Half by 2030”, two thirds of cars sold would have to be electric in order to achieve the White House Goal, with a starting point of 1% of electric cars on the road today. We are switching from coal mines to EV batteries, electric vehicles, vertical farming, and a more efficient agricultural system. These new green markets will produce plentiful job opportunities. One thing Biden has not initiated, is the U.S. cutting back beef intake.

The Meat Reduction Proposal Controversy

Sorry vegans, but Biden DOES NOT plan on reducing U.S. meat consumption. It was just a rumor that had started.

“He reiterated that emissions from livestock production could be addressed by innovations like feed additives or methane capture technology.”

Biden Isn’t Banning Meat, USDA Chief Says

The Administration’s plan is to offer financial incentives to farmers to adopt cleaner farming practices in order to reduce carbon emissions. Biden is focused on cleaner feed, and innovative technology, and does not want to talk about restricting American diets.

Conclusion

I’m proud to have an administration that is taking climate change seriously by setting the ambitious goal to reduce greenhouse emissions by 50% by 2030. It will take multiple levels- local, state, and federal- to work together to find the solutions to make this goal happen. Every sector needs to be made environmentally friendly, and we’ll reach that goal together one step at a time. Thank you, Biden, for caring about our future here on Earth!

Top 10 Travel Destinations for Nature Lovers (USA)

There’s something about pressing pause in our busy lives, and taking in a deep breath of fresh air while surrounding yourself with nature. Yeah, I’m talking to you nature lovers! This travel destination list includes destinations that are made for hiking, snorkeling, site seeing, walking, and just appreciating the beauty of the great outdoors! Leave a comment to let us know if you’ve been to any of these locations!

  • Stairway To Heaven, Hawaii

Stairway to Heaven is breathtaking once you reach the top of this intermediate to advanced level trail. You will get a great workout out of this Hawaiian destination, and a once in a lifetime view.  This one isn’t for the faint of heart, as it escalates 2000ft by a staircase only 18 inches wide, but it is perfect for the adrenaline junkie.

  • Mendenhall Glacier Caves, Alaska

Alaska could have its own “Top 10 Travel Destinations” list of it’s own, but for the sake of this list, I chose the Mendenhall Glacier Caves, Alaska. It is important to visit this destination before climate change melts the remainder of the glaciers. There’s not any destination similar to this one here, it truly is a one of a kind destination.

  • Hamilton Pool, Texas

Hamilton Pool, Texas, is a summer travelers dream! Be prepared to hike to this destination, but once you make it, you can cool off in the refreshing natural pool. Reservations are required since this natural beauty became discovered and popular, but it’s worth the trip for sure.

  • Hoe Rain Forest, Washington

Hoe Rain Forest, Washington, is a view out of a mystical fairytale! The Hoe Rain Forest is covered in moss, ferns, and extraordinary trees everywhere you look! Activities for this destination include hiking trails, where you may be lucky enough to see bobcats and bears! Visit the Hoh Rain Forest for the hiking experience of a lifetime!

  • Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming
Photo by Pixabay on Pexels.com

Grand Prismatic Spring, Wyoming, is a part of the Yellowstone National Park. This is the best part of the park, in my opinion, because it shows the natural beautiful rings of the hot spring. This is a popular travelers destination, and for good reason. This is a unique destination, making it to our Top 10 Travel Destinations List.

  • Atchafalaya Basin, Louisiana

If you’re not from Louisiana, this Top 10 Travel Destination might be impossible to pronounce. The Atchafalaya River Basin in Louisiana is a unique destination, specifically for those who love the South and aren’t afraid of a gator. There are numerous activities for this location, including hiking, bird watching, hunting, kayaking, and a night time, maybe some scary storytelling.

  • Mt. Desert, Maine

Mt Desert, Maine, is a nature lover travel destination for the East Coasters! Mt Desert offers picturesque views, crisp northern air, and the opportunity to enjoy the view of the Atlantic. Nature lovers need to eat too, which is why this location made it to the Top 10 List for offering an authentic small town vibe. You May Be Wandering suggests that Thurston’s Lobster Pound is a local favorite.

  • Watkins Glen State Park, New York

Watkins Glen State Park, New York, is every hikers dream! With walking trails and the STUNNING waterfall at the gorge, this destination is breathtaking! Located in New York, this nature trail is a must-see during the spring, summer, and fall months. This is a rainier location, so be sure to be prepared!

  • Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida

Dry Tortugas National Park, Florida, is great for the nature lover who thrives in water! This location is an extension of the Florida Keys. With tropical weather, it is a year round destination. This location use to be a military post, making it an awesome choice for the history buff as well! You cannot reach this location by car, due to it being 70 miles off the coast of key west, therefor you must be ready for a plane or boat trip.

  • Zion National Park, Utah

Zion National Park, Utah, is the perfect nature lover destination for the person who can’t decide if they want to go to Arizona, or Yellowstone. This is because Zion is a unique National Park, offering views similar to the Grand Canyon, while having flowing water and trees throughout the park. It truly is the best of both worlds! Zion National Park is a hikers dream.

That concludes our Top 10 Travel Destinations for Travel Lovers List! Please share with us any of the destinations you have visited, and recommendations for future trips!

The Global Food Crisis, And Alternative Solutions

Update 4/30/2021: Two days after this post, The Guardian released an article on how reducing meat consumption will drastically reduce carbon emissions. Read the story here: The Low Hanging Fruit in the Climate Battle? Cutting Down on Meat: By Gaby Hinsliff

Everybody loves to eat. That’s just a fact; you get home from work after a busy day and the first thing you think about is what you’ll be eating for dinner. However, this way of thinking might be outdated. Scientists predict that we’ll need 50% more food by 2050. (Feeding9Billion) We have entered a Global Food Crisis that needs to be taken seriously, and acted on immediately to ensure a sustainable future.

2008—12% of the U.S. population is still hungry. Despite $60 billion yearly in government food nutrition programs and the explosion of over 50,000 food banks and food pantries across the nation, one in six children in the United States go hungry each month and 35 million people cannot ensure minimum daily caloric requirements


World food crisis: What’s behind it what we can do. (2017, March 20). Retrieved April 28, 2021, from https://www.worldhunger.org/world-food-crisis/

SO, despite $60 Billion yearly in government food programs and the use of food banks, people are still hungry, and there is still not enough food. Therefore, what we have been doing to combat The Global Food Crisis has not been working. What is causing this crisis anyways?

Causes of the Global Food Crisis:

Increased Meat Consumption: Meat takes an exponential amount of grain and water to produce. Some countries view eating meat as a sign of wealth, and increase their intake for a well perceived social status. Globally, meat consumption increased by 58% between 1998 and 2018 and is expected to increase 1% each year until at least 2023. (Christen, C)

Inclement Weather/Droughts: Unpredictable weather is every farmers nightmare. With global warming increasing the volatility of the weather, droughts are more prominent than ever. Droughts are killing crops, and making water supply for the plants scarce in certain areas.

Poor Regulation: 6 out of the 11 past years, we consumed more food than we produced. (Feeding9Billion) This should have called for government intervention. In those 6 years we consumed more than we produced, we “dipped” into food reserves intended for future use, eliminating our buffer.

Increased Population: Increased population directly corelates to higher food demand. We have more people to feed on this Earth and are struggling to keep up with the demand.

Alternative Solutions to Combat Global Food Crisis:

Buy Local: Supporting your local food system, such as a locals farmers market, is a simple step towards solving the Global Food Crisis. Supporting local farmers takes away business from large corporations, who don’t need the money to survive in business. Local Farmers help take the load off grocery stores, and rising food prices.

Encourage Farming Careers and Education: This may seem indirectly related to solving a food crisis, however, there aren’t enough farmers. Not enough farmers, means not enough food. This is mostly due to how hard it is to profit off farming, most farmers going into debt and giving the trade up. Over 100,000 farmers in India committed suicide over the past decade caused by stress from outstanding farming debts. (Feeding9Billion) Clearly this shows a problem with how the system is set up. Cooperative Extension System (CES) empowers farmers, ranchers, and communities of all sizes to meet the challenges they face, adapt to changing technology, improve nutrition and food safety, prepare for and respond to emergencies, and protect our environment. (National Institute) The CES provides the tools necessary for aspiring farmers to succeed, in order to ultimately increase the population of farmers to tackle the Global Food Crisis. Combat the Global Food Crisis by donating to farming education programs, as well as share information with aspiring farmers.

The administration so far has leaned heavily toward financial incentives for farmers to voluntarily adopt more climate-friendly practices,

Biden Isn’t Banning Meat, USDA Chief Says

Decrease Meat Consumption: It’s no surprise everyone is going vegetarian and vegan. There are multiple health benefits for people as well as the environment if you eliminate, or at least cutback on meat intake. Read this quick example of how much water goes into making a steak, versus how much water goes into making grain: How Much Water Does It Take To Make One Steak? If you skipped the article, here’s what you missed:

  • 2,400+ gallons of water to produce 1lb of meat
  • 25 gallons of water to produce 1lb of wheat

In addition to the resources being spent on meat production, animals are also becoming more susceptible to disease by being crammed into close living quarters without enough space.

Conclusion

We are in a Global Food Crisis. As urgent as it is, there is still time to make changes in your life to cause a positive ripple effect. Support your local farmers, they’ll be there for you when the grocery stores food prices are too high to handle. Educate farmers and encourage the farming career as a trade, these are the potential people that will be feeding the world one day. Farming is a profession to take great pride in as it isn’t easy either. Lastly, decrease your meat intake. The future is focused on making plant based meat, so this is a concept that isn’t going away anytime soon. Making a difference at home happens before seeing it worldwide.

For More Information:

Feeding 9 Billion Video series, is an awesome learning tool for people that want a crash course on the Global Food Crisis. Information through this article was also provided by the World Hunger website. These two are amazing sources for advocacy and education. For information regarding farming education, and programs available to help assist in farming, check out the Cooperative Extension System (CES) website.

References:

Christen, C. (2021, April 24). Meat consumption in the U.S. is growing at an alarming rate. Retrieved April 28, 2021, from https://sentientmedia.org/meat-consumption-in-the-us/#:~:text=S.%20increased%20by%2040%20percent%20between%201961%20and,Facts%20report%20Global%20Meat%20%26%20Poultry%20Trends%20.

Feeding9Billion (Director). (2012, November 07). Feeding nine billion Video 1: INTRODUCING solutions to the global food crisis by dr. EVAN FRASER [Video file]. Retrieved April 28, 2021, from https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=raSHAqV8K9c&t=648s

National Institute of food and agriculture. (n.d.). Retrieved April 28, 2021, from https://nifa.usda.gov/cooperative-extension-system

World food crisis: What’s behind it what we can do. (2017, March 20). Retrieved April 28, 2021, from https://www.worldhunger.org/world-food-crisis/

Save The Ocean, Stop Commercial Fishing

Introduction

Today, each person eats on average 19.2kg of fish a year – around twice as much as 50 years ago, according to the WWF. (Facts and Figures) What affect does this demand for fish have on the environment, animals, and our own health? Commercial Fishing is DESTROYING all 3 of these aspects right under our nose. 3 major concepts need to be brought to light to understand the damage of commercial fishing- plastic contribution, bycatch, and inedible fish, if any fish at all.

Plastic Contribution

Plastic will outweigh fish by 2050. 705,000 tons of this is fishing nets, making up majority of the waste. (CondorFerries) This means, commercial fishing, one activity alone, accounts for half of the plastic in the ocean. There should be safe zones where commercial fishing is prohibited in order to reduce these alarming numbers, however, only around 1% of our oceans are truly protected. (Gibbens, S) The fact of the matter is- we don’t have video cameras in the ocean to capture illegal fishing activity- we have the Coast Guard, and they cannot be everywhere at once.

Bycatch

Commercial Fishing destroys animal life by catching high numbers of bycatch. About 40% of fish catch worldwide is unintentionally caught and is partly thrown back into the sea, either dead or dying. (Facts and Figures) This group of animals unintentionally caught are known as bycatch. If you check the WWF website, https://www.fishforward.eu/en/project/by-catch/, you can see live updates of how many animals lives are lost. Many dolphins and whales get caught in these commercial fishing nets, cannot reach the surface to breathe, suffocating and dying a painful death. This raises an ethical question to commercial fishing.

Dolphin Safe Controversy

Commercial Tuna Fishermen try to combat bycatch by adding a “Dolphin Safe” label to canned tuna, indicating that the company followed U.S. fishing operation laws, specifically regarding to bycatch. It’s important to note, that even though there’s a label on the can, that there’s no one out in the ocean to monitor and prove that the commercial fishermen actually followed “Dolphin Safe” rules. More information regarding this can be found in the Netflix Documentary, Seaspiracy. https://www.netflix.com/watch/81014008?trackId=14277281&tctx=-97%2C-97%2C%2C%2C%2C

Inedible Fish Due To Plastic Ingestion

Commercial Fishing, along with other factors, are making fish inedible. Millions of pieces of plastic get contained in the 5 ocean gyres, and marine wildlife is directly poisoned on this while feeding in their habitat. (CondorFerries) In terms of plastic, 8.3 million tons are discarded in the sea yearly. Of which, 236,000 are ingestible microplastics that marine creatures mistake for food. (CondorFerries) So to put it simply, we dump plastic in the ocean, fish mistake it for food, fish become poisoned by plastic, then we eat the poisoned fish. Commercial fishing is overharvesting the edible fish we have left, and they don’t even have time to reproduce their populations unless we stop commercial fishing and let nature replenish itself.

Call To Action

We need to stop commercial fishing in order to save our oceans and the wildlife that lives in it. Commercial fishing contributes to half of the plastic in the ocean, unnecessary bycatch, overharvesting of fish, and poisoning fish by the plastic deposited in the ocean by their activities. Catching your own fish locally could be an option, or at least significantly reducing seafood intake. The best option is to stop eating fish in order to shut commercial fishing companies down. If we don’t make a change now, it might be too late to save the fate of the fish.

References

CondorFerries. (n.d.). 100+ ocean Pollution statistics & Facts (2020-2021). Retrieved April 27, 2021, from https://www.condorferries.co.uk/marine-ocean-pollution-statistics-facts

Facts & figures: The cold hard facts about overfishing. (n.d.). Retrieved April 27, 2021, from https://www.fishforward.eu/en/topics/facts-figures/

Gibbens, S. (2021, February 10). Oceans are in trouble, ipcc says. Why are MARINE Protections falling short? Retrieved April 27, 2021, from https://www.nationalgeographic.com/environment/article/paper-parks-undermine-marine-protected-areas