Eco Op-Ed

Eco Op-Ed is your environmental forum. While not endorsing all viewpoints expressed here, we embrace the adage that a mind functions best when open; therefore, we welcome a wide range of ecological opinion. To join the discussion, add your comment below any piece.

Bangladesh Confronts Climate Change With Eco Innovation and Floating Communities
Friday, 23 May 2014 00:00  |  Written by Marita Prandoni | Commentary

Boat School Exterior photo courtesy of ShidhulaiIn early June, a heavy cushion of wet air hangs over the isolated backwaters of Chalan Beel in northwestern Bangladesh, signaling the start of the seasonal, torrential monsoons. As the skies darken, Ratna Khatun and her cousins Shakila and Rupali file up a plank and into a sheltered deckhouse, several other enthusiastic children scurrying behind. The girls take their seats in the front row, which has been reserved for the most studious. Read on…

Steady State: A Sustainable Economy for the Southwest
Thursday, 22 May 2014 00:00  |  Written by Steven Kotler | Commentary

Urban Sprawl Phoenix Style photo by Alan LevineIn 1991, George Bush Sr. was President, something called “grunge” was beginning to ooze out of the Pacific Northwest, and I had just moved to Phoenix, Arizona.

Back then, the city was mostly empty space. There was a meager downtown, a few fringe settlements and nearby Scottsdale—which was the real boom town. But mainly the area was open desert: dry and bare and beautiful. Read on…

‘Got Raw Milk?’: The Pasteurization Scam
Friday, 16 May 2014 00:00  |  Written by Guest Contributor | Commentary

Milk courtesy of www.bluewaikiki.comRather than bow down and revere raw milk as ‘a holy nectar of the gods’ (as many of its hundreds of thousands of consumers do; 40,000 in California alone), I would like to more objectively examine the process of pasteurization and its broader role in conscientious living. Pasteurization, a process developed in the late 19th century by (quelle surprise!) Monsieur Louis Pasteur, exposes milk to brief stints of high heat, in order to kill off all bacteria and enzymes. And no bacteria means no scary germs, right? That’s what officials and dairy-industry moguls would like you to believe. But in actuality, raw milk, teeming with friendly bacteria, has many proven health benefits. Read on…

Monoculture Agribusiness: Harvesting the Seeds of Suicide
Monday, 03 February 2014 00:00  |  Written by Marita Prandoni | Commentary

Indian Farmer photo by Ananth BSIn just the single month of April 2009, more than 1,500 farmers in the state of Chattisgarh, India’s rice bowl, committed suicide after being driven into crippling debt due to crop failure resulting from low water levels, drought and switching to green-revolution, genetically modified rice varieties that require heavier irrigation. Read on…

The ‘Porkmole Liberation Front’ Manifesto
Saturday, 04 January 2014 00:00  |  Written by Guest Contributor | Commentary

Pig Line-Dance photo by Bill DimmickWe the proud members of the Porkmole Liberation Front (PMLF) hereby demand the release of the porkmole (rhymes with guacamole) that has hijacked the bodies and minds of people everywhere, seduced by rampant consumer-credit culture and the unending search for mass-marketed meaning, all pre-packaged for convenience in vacuum-sealed containers. Read on...

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Eco Tip

Grow a garden or a fruit tree. A garden is fun, provides exercise, teaches kids about nature, reduces your carbon footprint (since your food need not be shipped to you), and controls what pesticides or chemicals do or do not go into the food you eat. Not to mention how delicious and nutritious fresh-picked fruits and vegetables are! More tips...

Eco Quote

It is in man's heart that the life of nature's spectacle exists; to see it, one must feel it. - Jean-Jacques Rousseau (1712-1778), Emile, 1762  More quotes...