Friday, September 25, 2009

Sustainability Awards & Fish

Well I wrote a post earlier in the week about our garden, but cyberspace ate it *sigh* I am so technically gifted, I will re-do it later though as some of the information might help others. Anyway last night DH and I were the very fortunate invitees to the second annual Sustainability Awards for our local council (last year we won one of the inaugural awards so I think they were being really nice and invited us back this year as well & I am so happy that they did). After organizing a babysitter for our cherub (thanks Mandy you are an absolute super star) we got to get dressed up and go out for a fantastic evening.

The variety of nominees in all the categories made for interesting and lively conversation, the entertainment was such good fun and as well as bring original, they lived up to their name of being very Junkadelic! Of course during the evening we were inspired to strive for four more projects that although we have discussed in the past never really got concreted into anything substantial – so watch this space over the next year or so to see how we go with them! We have decided we really want to get chooks (yay – but I have to check council building guidelines etc first and we'll have to figure out what will happen with them if we get to go away on holiday, but surely it can't be that hard after all we used to keep literally hundreds of them on our family farm when I was younger); planning for some vertical strawberry containers made from PVC pipe under the patio, we have discussed before, but our ideas never seemed to gel, however during morning tea this morning we seem to have come up with something that will not only work, but is hopefully affordable as well (our strawberry plants are extremely prolific and last year we gave away over 80 plants for free and this year I was mean and sold them for $2 a plant and donated the money to the Australian Marine Conservation Society except for the dozen donated to my son's day care as they are putting in a vegetable garden area); after talking to a wonderful couple who won one of this year's individual household awards I have been inspired (thanks Amy) and after discussing it with DH this morning at length we are planning to open our home next year for the Sustainable House open day and I completed the expression of interest for that this morning so I am sure some preparation/organization will be required for that and finally we got to add a major expense project to our list of "wants" even though we have some great & productive vegetable beds, for us this type of system is about the fish production primarily. Globally fishing is completely unsustainable and the number of species that are critically endangered is growing on a virtual weekly basis, this is of course hampered by our lack of knowledge about our ocean environments as to put it in context we know more about deep space than our oceans and space exploration only began in the 1960s!!! We also know that in order to be more sustainable we need to reduce our red meat consumption, but I have issues with replacing that with chicken or fish due to overfishing and the horrendous conditions most meat chickens are kept in (we currently patronize the Mt Barker free range products) so the concept of producing our own fish in our own backyard is very desirable, unfortunately we'll have to wait a little while as we need to save up (or win lotto tonight), but it is good to have goals to aim for as otherwise we'd just be floating along rudderless……..

There is a fantastic movie out at the moment called End Of The Line and DH is going to the premiere in our state tonight. It has been tagged "the inconvenient truth about our oceans" all of the projections are that within our lifetime i.e. approx. 2045-50 that the human species will have overfished the oceans to the point of collapse and no return and of course I really want to see the movie, but we modified our seafood consumption a few years ago through the help of the Australian Marine Conservation Society , where if you are at all confused about what is a sustainable fish species and what is under threat, they have a free download which can easily be printed and kept in your wallet whilst shopping etc. If you don't get to see the movie - you can watch some great trailers on the website.

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