A lovely excerpt from Crow Planet:
“We are incapable of isolation. Every time we sip wine, feed the cat, order pizza, watch Survivor, every time we do anything, anything at all, we are brushing, however surreptitiously, however beneath our awareness- however, even, against our will- a wilder, natural world. Such awareness is simultaneously daunting and beautiful. It means that everything we do matters, and matters more than we can even know. Yes, of course we must do all of the things we now know by rote: we must replace our incandescent lightbulbs with compact fluorescents, and recycle, and compost and ride our bikes, and buy organic, local, biointensive, fair-trade. All of it. And if we can manage these things with a joyful heart, then all the better. But this is not about checklists, is it? About the reduction our planetary relationships to a mean tally of resources used, saved and available? It is about a habit of being, a way of knowing, a way of dwelling. It is about attentive recognition of our constant, inevitable continuity with life on earth, and the gorgeous knowledge this entails. There is a crow’s nest in the neighbor’s yard, and there are feathers at our feet. We walk around like poems- our lives infused with meaning beyond themselves.”
That being said, we often hear how there is a food crisis happening on the planet: if we don’t find ways to feed the planet as soon as possible, we may lack food for us and everyone who is already starving. We need to find ‘techniques’, when these chemical and superficial ways of growing food are the very ones that damage the soil permanently, reducing our chances of achieving the goal they were meant to fulfill. If we keep going at the rate we are at, we will need three planets to sustain our lifestyles. To know more about your carbon footprint, click here.
It is wonderful to buy organic, but what about the distance travelled by fresh produce in the winter months? Yes, we are in Canada – it is difficult to grow food with snow. I hear you. However, our ancestors canned their products and learned how to store some root vegetables and apples for long periods of time in cellars. This tradition is almost as lost and forgotten as Latin is to Italy. We don’t need to import. We have everything we need here and can go back to putting our food in jars. Why am I not encouraging freezing? Because of the excessive amount of energy that would be needed to keep enough food frozen for such a long period of time, and anyhow, frozen food doesn’t keep as long as preserves do.
I am not asking everyone to move out in the country, grow their own gardens, build huge cellars and live like menonites. I am asking everyone to reflect on what they can do to keep their food supplies as sustainable as possible – because everyone can make a difference.