Manga Recommendation: Children of the Sea
If you love all things related to marine life, then you might just love this Japanese manga series by Daisuke Igarashi (published by Viz Media in North America). Mr.Igarashi paints a beautiful and touching story that revolves primarily around 3 children, who are very much in touch with the sea and all the living beings in it. You’ll find it hard to not fall in love with the plot and beautiful watercolour artwork!
“Ruka is a young girl whose parents are separated and whose father works in an aquarium. When two boys, Umi and Sora, who were raised in the sea by dugongs, are brought to the aquarium, Ruka feels drawn to them and begins to realize that she has the same sort of supernatural connection to the ocean that they do. Umi and Sora’s special power seems to be connected to strange events that have been occurring more and more frequently, such as the appearance of sea creatures far from their home territory and the disappearance of aquarium animals around the world. However, the exact nature of the boys’ power and of the abnormal events is unknown, and Ruka gets drawn into investigating the mystery that surrounds her new friends.” (Anime News Network)
Where to find?
Some locations of Indigo/Chapters, and various graphic novel/manga stores in Toronto. Locate store here.
Termites use poop to fight biological warfare
The insect uses its waste to build its nests and line its tunnels, raising helpful disease-fighting microbes.
After learning about a Being Green contest, Ian is determined to win and make his dreams of fame and fortune come true. The only problem is that he still needs to come up with an award worthy idea.
Meanwhile, his mother Vicky plans to win the contest by neutralizing Kelley’s family carbon footprint so she can meet David Suzuki, her eco-idol. To win the contest Ian will have to out-green kids across the country and even his own mother!
Seriously, though this is kind of a big deal. Know that big problem we have? You know, the one involving a crapload of used plastic hanging around in landfills with nowhere to biodegrade for a couple million years? Well, Jonathan Russell might’ve solved that problem. See, Russell and his fellow Yale students went to Ecuador, where they found a new kind of fungus they’re calling Pestalotiopsis microspora. Big deal, you’re thinking. Anyone can find fungus anywhere! Well, something his fellow students found out after the fact is that this fungus can live on a diet of polyurethane alone — and even crazier, it doesn’t even need air to do so! In other words, we could potentially put it at the bottom of a landfill and cover it with plastic, and it would do the rest of the work. This might be game-changing if it works as advertised. (photo via Flickr user dbutt; EDIT: Updated with link to research abstract) source
Sixteen-year-old Elif Bilgin of Turkey has developed a way to replace traditional petroleum-based plastic with banana peels.
The Turkish teen took home a US$50,000 prize for her project “Go Bananas!” Thursday after winning the second annual Scientific American Science in Action Award, associated with Google Science Fair.
“My project makes it possible to use banana peels, a waste material which is thrown away almost every day, in the electrical insulation of cables,” Bilgin said in a media statement.
“This is both an extremely nature-friendly and cheap process, which has the potential to decrease the amount of pollution created due to the use of plastics, which contain petroleum derivatives.”
Bilgin spent two years developing the bio-plastic, which does not decay. She said the process is so easy that it is possible to repeat at home, with special care taken for chemicals used in the production process.
In September, the teen will compete at Google’s California headquarters for the overall Google Science Fair prize for 15-to-16 year olds. She will also have access to a one-year mentorship.
"Glendon Forest Tour Photos" By Megan Nowick
(Note from Webmaster: I apologize for the long delay. These pictures were supposed to be posted up…
Our exec team is committed in keeping anyone who is interested in what GRAS does updated with videos of our events, projects and much more!
Qu’est-ce que je vais faire le 30 janvier 2013?
Bonne année 2013 mes Cœur de Lions! Félicitations à tout le monde pour survivre un autre semestre! J’espère que tout le monde s’est amusé avec sa famille et ses amis pendant les vacances d’hiver. Pour ceux qui ont écrit un examen, j’espère qu’il s’est passé bien.
Chaque nouvelle année veut dire un nouveau changement ou un nouveau début pour tout le monde et cette année est la même chose. On a crée des buts pour l’année 2013 et le club à Glendon qui s’appelle Roots and Shoots l’a aussi fait. Qu’est-ce que c’est? C’est encourager plus de Glendonniens et Glendonniennes à propos de la protection de la planète. Mais comment?
Si on se promène autour du campus, on verra des affiches partout et oui, j’ai dit le mot “partout”. Au cas où on n’a pas du temps pour les lire, voici les détails:
Le club invite tous les Glendonnien(ne)s au premier événement de 2013 pour voir un film qui s’appelle Le lorax pour seulement 2$! Il aura lieu 19h00 à 21h00 le 30 janvier. Ce événement sera situé dans la grande salle A100, dans le Centre d’Excellence. Bien sûr, il y aura des collations! Alors, venez voir ce film et passez une bonne nuit avec vos amis!
Voici ces sites-web si on veut voir la bande-annonce ou lire le résumé:
Par Stephanie Mak
To Mean Well, To Do Good
These two actions mean two very different things. One can do harm while meaning well and vice-versa. This certainly is true of charities and non-government organizations (NGOs).
Canadians gave away $8.19 billion to charities in 2008 (CBC News). Some Canadian charities, however, have come under heavy fire, such as Yele Haiti, for which senior staff members are reported to have pocketed a third of all funds raised, leaving little for the actual programs (Levant).
Some people, upon reading this, might think volunteering abroad is a good alternative to donating to charities. After all, what could be more fulfilling than building a school or a well for a poor village? Ah, herein lies the rub: What happens after construction? The villagers haven’t been trained to maintain or repair the infrastructure. Secondly, we are in fact stealing jobs away from the local economy.
I write from second-hand experience. My mother grew up in the Democratic Republic of Congo. Her father was a mechanical engineer stationed there for quite a few years, doing, you guessed it, construction. The actual construction of a well isn’t very time consuming, but what he found was that if it broke, there was no one with the experience to fix it. So he trained local men, which is why he stayed there for so many years.
My mother recently participated in a similar project; she spent a month in Cambodia last year training teachers to work with children with disabilities instead of working with the children herself. This form of aid is rather revolutionary. Indeed, my mother explained to me that some of the difficulties she faced during her time abroad were caused by charitable organizations. After the genocide, several charities and NGOs rushed over to Cambodia to help, which, my mother says, is causing difficulties for the country today. Many of the teachers she worked with were refusing to work. Instead, they kept asking about their money. “When are we getting our money?”, they asked, “Do you get sponsors?” This attitude reflects a habit that can be acquired if there is too much dependence on NGOs and charities – the habit of not working for money but simply expecting organizations to hand it over. Another sustainable organization in Cambodia is trying to have bridges built across the country, but they face the problem of finding a willing workforce.
Still want to make a difference? The best way is probably not what you’d expect, but believe it or not, it’s tourism. By visiting a country and buying from the local restaurants and shops, you are directly contributing to the local economy.
My opinion of charities is shared with Michaëlle Jean, former Governor General of Canada. She aptly described the challenges she and many Haitians faced after the 2010 earthquake in a CBC interview. She said that the government of Haiti is decapitalized since it cannot compete with the NGOs (Shwartz).
To conclude, I leave you with this quote: “You cannot build a sustainable economy on charity.” – Michaëlle Jean.
By Melanie Blain
Ste-Anne-des-Pins, as Sudbury was known as until the late 19th century, was a remote and small village whose main industry was lumber. Then, in 1883, the Canadian Pacific Railway made its way through the town, bringing with it an influx of population – the town grew and was renamed Sudbury. Copper ore was discovered and mined, however nickel was discarded until it had a use during World War I. This mining proved devastating for the environment – the roasting of copper and nickel was done by cutting down areas the size of football fields, stacking up trees and ore, and setting them ablaze. The fires would take days to die out, covering the area in a sulfuric smoke. Entire sections of forests were cut down, and acid rain destroyed any other vegetation, turning the rocks pitch black.
It wasn’t until the 1980s that ambitious re-greening projects were undertaken. The construction of the Inco Superstack, measuring 380m in height, disperses sulfur dioxide up to 240km away. Nine million trees have been planted since 1978 (Natural Resources Canada), and a revolutionary innovation recently came about at the local university.
This innovation is called forest floor transplantation, and Laurentian University is heading the project. More than just trees were decimated in the refining process – bacteria, fungi, lichens, insects and other plants were also depleted (City of Greater Sudbury). The project originally began in 2004 as a simple test of two plots. Following the great success of the transplantation, the work began in earnest in June 2010, when the top four inches of soil were harvested from the Highway 400 expansion project and brought back to the damaged land.
The work efforts are believed to help counter some of the effects of the refining (Natural Resources Canada). Laying atop the Canadian Shield, Sudbury has little topsoil to provide anchorage for the newly transplanted trees, making them vulnerable to heavy winds. Furthermore, the lack of soil means a lack of moisture retention, making the forest more susceptible to droughts. The transplanted mats are believed to further help with the spread of vegetation, bringing with them seeds and other bacteria valuable to nutrient cycles. So far, the plots are doing well and some are thriving, reaching up to 120cm beyond the transplant border in a single year.
Check out this video to see the process in action.
By Melanie Blain
Happy New Year everyone!
Thanks to everyone here, Fall 2012 was a huge success for GRAS!
We raised $606 from just our Christmas Charity Gala, making it a total of $810 fundraised for JGI’s community centred conservation programs and we sold 6lbs of JGI coffee blend!!! Sweet no? Also our green grass blog has almost 200 followers and over 1200 visits from over 30 countries!! Let’s keep promoting the ‘green’ values!
What to Expect in Winter 2013?
For Winter 2013 we will be doing more grass-roots initiatives and social events such as our:
Our first meeting back is on Monday January 7 from 4pm-5:30pm (the latest) in Rm C202, the usual. Please be aware that we will continue to have our decision-making meetings every Monday same time and room while there will be an alternate FUN meeting every other Thursday from 12-2pm! Woohoo!
There will be HOURS giving out to those who come to either one of our meetings whenever we are planning logistics or making posters for an upcoming event!!
P.S. there will be snacks and drinks to welcome you all back to GRAS for 2013 so see as many of you all then!
Last but not least…
We might well possibly have our first-ever green pub night (;we got Colvin to reluctantly agree to having one set for this coming semester).
This pub night would be a private GRAS fundraiser and if it is a go, will most likely be on March 7th, which is a Thursday (usually day of the week for any Glendon PUB NIGHT), especially since we, as a club, will be busy pretty much throughout the entire semester with our other (annual) events.
With all these events coming up this semester, this is why…
WE NEED YOU! :)
Your presence at any of our meetings and events will be much appreciated! Remember this club can only run with the involvement of fellow environmental/humanitarian/animal rights activists alike!!
We also have a Roots and Shoots Ambassador on our team, Colvin, who just happens to be one of our co-chairs and he is friendly and highly enthusiastic about GRAS has in store for everyone.
Amber, our other co-chair, is going to bring in the alcohol and hopefully the GOOD TIMES by having GRAS host an exciting GREEN pub night that people will want to come back to annually. Most of our executives on the team has agreed to it; let’s show Colvin ;) that pub nights can also be GREEN and a ton of fun)!!!
Please join us on YuConnect if you have not already done so in order for us to officially give you hours to put on your YU co-curricular record.
Cannot come to our Monday or Thursday meetings? No sweat, as of Fall 2012, we have been quite active on many social media forums!
Read and catch up with our bi-weekly emails and monthly newsletters and/or friend us on FB or follow us on Twitter, Tumblr or our very own blog GREEN GRASS.
Links to most of them are below.
You can also email or message us about projects or events that you would like GRAS to host/have in the near future at Glendon or in Toronto and we might just make it happen!
Anyhow, have a wonderful weekend before school starts!!
Colvin Chan and Amber Shortell,
co-chairs of Glendon Roots and Shoots