Responsible Legislation: Curb Idling Cars & Build Cycling Infrastructure

Rather than diving into where I left off on my book or starting the new blog that is calling me, I just put this together and sent it to the mayor’s office (contact form online). Feel free to copy and paste it if you are aware of this disconnect (lack of awareness) in your own community and wish to send some of the information to your own city government.

Responsible Legislation to curb idling cars and build safe bicycling infrastructure – taking local responsibility for a global problem of extreme warming.

red hot planet article by Jason Samenow for the Washington Post

red hot planet article by Jason Samenow for the Washington Post

In lieu of the fact that global temperatures continue to exceed the ‘normal’ averages, year after year as expressed in this article by Jason Samenow in the Washington Post, Red-hot planet: All-time heat records have been set all over the world during the past week It displays the obvious, human induced global warming. I am currently residing in Providence. I get around on a bicycle everywhere that I live. I joined the mayor’s bike ride on the Thursday evening before the PVDfest, to promote bicycling. I have lived in numerous communities in the United States and in several European cities. For example, Germany has an extensive recycling program and an enormous functional infrastructure for bicycling in urban and rural areas. One is not ‘risking one’s life’ to commute by bicycle as they are in most American places. The city of Berlin, Germany hosts maintained and distinct bicycle paths. The bicycle paths are not merely lines drawn on the road or a logo of a bike lane painted on the road, but actually the bike paths are on the sidewalk, with a designated side for cyclists, the other for pedestrians. Cities in France and Scandinavian countries do the same thing. To ride on the road with only a line designating a bike path, is to me, risking injury and death. Therefore to encourage bicycling rather than discouraging it, infrastructure needs to be created to support safe family bicycling.

The cycling infrastructure in the Netherlands is like a science.

Fietspad bicycle infrastructure in the Netherlands

Fietspad bicycle infrastructure in the Netherlands

The main point of this email is that as someone whose major form of transportation is bicycling, no matter what city or country, I have encountered in just the few months living here in Providence a stupendous number of people who sit in their cars with the engine on, idling, while typically looking down at their phones. People sitting in idling cars are not the exception, but the norm. This is not in exceedingly frigid temperatures or high heat, but pleasant temps. I quickly was able to ascertain that it is everywhere, nothing to do with education, socio economic class, race or age factors. 30% of the population are simply oblivious to how they are contributing to the climate crisis, and sorry to say, along with air conditioning units. I’m sure you are aware of the fact that Americans use much more energy and power than most of the other countries combined, and are directly and indirectly responsible for cataclysmic repercussions everywhere.

You can do the math. I feel the heat as I cycle past cars and smell the exhaust. As an acquaintance mentioned, if people could actually see carbon monoxide, it might be a different story. http://www.silentshadow.org/carbon-monoxide-in-your-car.html
This threat is not observable, like a disease, until it has rendered its affects on the body. Having lived 7 years in Berlin, Germany where I also bicycled, I would see people conscientiously ‘turning off their engine’ even at red lights. What in the world is this complete gap in awareness and education? I would have thought that in a New England capital city there would be a whole lot more awareness and education about this. I have made signs, I have tapped on windows, I have written to the mayor’s office and even mentioned this to the mayor in person during this bike ride.

By the way, sitting on a bus to return to Providence from New York city several weeks ago, the dispatcher called the bus driver and told her to turn off the ignition of the bus while she was waiting another 20 minutes prior to departure, regardless of how hot the bus becomes. She later informed me that in Manhattan, the fine is $2,000 per idling bus. Since people don’t seem to be cognizant whatsoever of their role in contributing to global warming, or their own actions, I suggest like cutting out the sales of HUGE sugary drinks, enforcing awareness upon them through instituting fines if people are found sitting in their cars with the engine on. A fine large enough to deter people from even thinking twice about it. And with the money accrued, build safe and convenient bicycling infrastructure. Lead the country in building community, in attracting people to healthier, sustainable habits that encourage people to exercise more and eat right and have awareness of how their actions affect the entire planet. Lead other cities by example of your proactive legislations.

This city is very, very easy and convenient to get around on bicycle, and it could be made to be even more bicycle friendly. And if you think I’m exaggerating or think that it is unimportant, put 15 of your police officers out on bicycles to see, feel and smell for themselves how an entire metropolitan population is contributing to the climate crisis that we are in, and seemingly completely oblivious. And if you have never heard of or read this prominent British journalist’s writings, I suggest that you do. http://www.monbiot.com/2018/07/02/in-memoriam/

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Carol Keiter aka nomadbeatz welcomes donations for her writing, photography, illustrations, eBook & music composition

Carol Keiter the blogger

Carol Keiter the blogger

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EchoActivate | Education, Communication & Fun | Working Side-by-Side, Empowering through Participating | Cleaning, Reusing, Planting & Restoring Habitats for All Creatures | Global Climate Action Summit

If India was able to plant 66 million trees in twelve hours with a million + people side by side doing it, this same action could happen around the world towards any environmental movement.

https://www.independent.co.uk/news/world/asia/india-plant-66-million-trees-12-hours-environment-campaign-madhya-pradesh-global-warming-climate-a7820416.html

actions, EChOACTiVate

Word cloud of involved actions in EChOACTiVate

I meditate daily and ask the four forces – earth, air, water and plasma – practicing heart rhythm meditation. My intent is to carry my voice to peoples’ platforms I can participate in and for information and guidance to be carried to me. It’s an intuitive process of trusting in the intelligence and consciousness of the universal force. I feel that many things that appear to ‘happen’ serendipitously, arrive because of intention to connect to this information. Magic? Today, for the first time i clicked on and read this info from this community that I learned of while taking courses when living in Pennsylvania. Interfaith Power & Light: A Religious Response to Global Warming. I’d go to multidisciplinary talks with religious leaders from all these different faiths putting forth their viewpoint on various questions. Opening it, i found out about this, http://globalclimateactionsummit.org/. The Global Climate Action Summit happens to be taking place in San Francisco, September 12th to 14th. Just a week before the ccc reunion.

lets mots, les activité
pour EChOACTIvate

It seems to be an excellent place to continue to disseminate my idea. The idea started years ago, imagined actually right before the COP21 Paris climate talks, which I went to, to Paris for two weeks with 20 dollars.

Previously I named the idea Eco Revolution, then EcoActivate, because the first was taken.

https://carolkeiter.wordpress.com/2015/11/21/calling-for-echoactivate-partners-core-team-refugee-manpower-best-weapon-is-education-and-empowerment/

https://digesthis.wordpress.com/2015/11/21/calling-for-echoactivate-partners-core-team-corporate-sponsors-government-subsidies/

lo que tu puedes hacer con EChOACTiVate

The idea is to bring the information to the people, through a cyber portal of information, and a mobile unit that comes to a community with needs that people perceive or perhaps aren’t aware of at all, that they can then do together to clean up and build sustainable energy, transportation and to plant community gardens, bee and butterfly highways, plant trees and build animals bridges…

The idea is to bring people together in a celebratory, participatory way. With the knowledge they need to create, transform and participate in greening their own environment.

Education is the tool. People power is the engine.

was EChOACTiVate ist

was EChOACTiVate ist

The Eloquently and Elegantly stated Truth

Nothing is more important than reading this. And then reading it again.

The most elegant and eloquent presentation of the facts, that anyone who can understand words, must be persuaded to hear and respond to emotionally and intuitively as the truth.

I have merely copied and pasted the text of this writing within the link below (minus the original links within it), feeling it to be the utterly most important statement of vast insight, that everyone must read. And continue to talk.

-.—.—-.—–.——.-.—.—-.—–.——.-.—.—-.—–.——.-.—.—-.—–.—-.-.—.–.-

http://www.grenzbegriff.com/2017/10/leaving.html

 

these are my words at the time of writing — I am more like tree than rock — as I bend to reach the sunlight

Wednesday, October 25, 2017

Leaving

Hi friends,

I’m leaving Google at the end of next week.

There’s too much I want to say.  🙂

I spent the summer away from work, outdoors in Oregon, awash in beauty.  I learned a lot.  I wept at how we’re treating the earth, as I rode past mile after mile of logged forests, polluted streams, and lifeless monocrop fields.

I got to be part of what I’ll call “alternative culture”, to explore ways of meeting all of our human needs through local community alternatives to basically everything we currently use money for.  I wrote some about this time here on this blog.  I barely scratched the surface though.  More and more people, perhaps millions now even in the West, are devoting their lives to new (and sometimes ancient) ways of living in healthy relationship with each other and with the earth.  While they are usually partly within the current system, when all of these new ways of living come together, the current system becomes obsolete.  I see joyous glimpses of this everywhere.

Meanwhile our dominant civilization is killing its own foundation: the healthy web of life on earth.  Through deforestation and pollution we are destroying the ability of the planet to support all forms of life.  We can see this in the oceans where the fish populations are collapsing, the silent fields that were once thriving forests, and the deserts where millions of people go hungry in drought.  This ecological crisis can’t be solved simply by swapping oil for solar panels.  I’m no longer optimistic that we will soon fix these problems with some new technology.  It’s quite possible that climate change is exacerbating the storms and droughts and fires, and that these will continue to become more severe in the next years.

The effects are not evenly distributed.  The unhoused breathe wildfire smoke while many of the housed have filtered air.  Some of us see our homes flooded or burnt while for others business continues as usual.  Most communities in the country and increasingly in the world have lost the ability to sustain themselves from their land, and now must import almost everything they need from elsewhere, which becomes precarious when those importing the goods see no profit in it (food deserts), or when disaster breaks down the supply line like in Puerto Rico.  Many communities no longer have access to clean water, or are losing it as I write.  On Monday I listened to a man from Guatemala talk about a new silver mine near his home that is polluting and drying up the water supply for many villages there.  Almost all silver is used to produce electronics, and demand is rising.  In Oregon this summer, ancient trees thousands of years old were cleared for fire breaks.  The entire planet is being saturated with chemicals that we ought never to have created.  These kinds of damage cannot be undone or fixed by technology.  The story for other species is even worse, as most wild animal populations have died off and we pack billions of animals in cages in horrific factory farms.  The coral reefs, the rhinos, the ancient forests, the whales, and even the insects… who speaks for them?  Some people do, and they end up in jail if their actions threaten profits.  Profits are made at the expense of Life.

And within our civilization, we have more prisoners and refugees, more drugs and anxiety and depression and stress and addiction than ever.  Even in wealthy regions, most people don’t like the work they do all day.  It’s also not physically healthy to be indoors or using a computer or riding in vehicles for as many hours as many of us who are “successful” do.  What is happening to us?

It seems the leaders of our world are apathetic or powerless, as they fight over the most gaudy deck chairs on this titanic.  While it pains me, I don’t hate them for this; their actions are the product of a traumatic history that touches all of us.  They don’t know what they’re doing.

I envision a more beautiful world where humans have a healthy part to play, to love and respect the earth, not to dominate and exploit it.  I see many people living that vision already, and want to live my life in service to it.  I see the extremes of both ugliness and beauty grow more stark.  Ugliness as we close down and protect ourselves from the ‘other’, beauty as we come together in community, in love with mother earth.  Will “society” as a whole make some kind of transition, or continue the march into dystopia and eventual chaos?  I don’t know.  It will be both at the same time.  Some people are already in an obvious dystopia, some are in a beautiful place yet in the shadow of a collapsing ecosystem.  To hope for a peaceful transition would be to ignore the incredible violence on which the current system lives.  It will be violent because it already is.  May we learn to be kind to each other as these changes unfold.

It’s been said that we need the darkness to see the stars.  We can open ourselves to what is happening, feel and honor our pain, grieve what is lost, and revel in our deep gratitude for the beauty of life.  I don’t mean to be a downer pointing at all this ugliness.  I feel that we have a deep need to see it and acknowledge it.  It makes the beauty that much more precious and worth living for.

“Tell me, what else should I have done?
Doesn’t everything die at last, and too soon?
Tell me, what is it you plan to do
With your one wild and precious life?”
-Mary Oliver

What should we do then?

I don’t know exactly what we should do.  I don’t have a rational “here’s what everyone needs to do” that will resolve all of these crises.  I want to let go of my need to control what happens, because I’m really not in control.  At the same time, even if I let go and accept whatever comes, I am a human being and it is natural for me to care and want to help, to serve what I love.  I will not deny that part of me either.  So I find myself thinking about how to help, even if it seems “hopeless” overall.  I need not stress about the outcomes, but I will still act.  What else would I do with my few short years here?

So what might I do to be practical?

I don’t believe our technology is serving us well.  We, the wealthy humans near the top of the power hierarchy may see it as indispensable, but if we consider the animals or the fish or the trees or the laborers in the sweatshops and mines and plantations, it’s not working out so well.  Yes, our technology relieves some suffering in some places, but at what cost?  We simply do not, and probably cannot, count the costs of development.  I am not enthusiastic that further technological progress will heal us.

I also don’t believe that our problems are mostly due to money being in the wrong hands.  Measuring everything by monetary value seems to me one of the roots of the crises.  The mentality that values money over life drives much of the pollution and resource extraction and oppression around the world, since humans first accumulated “property” and enslaved each other.  I don’t feel that getting as much money as I can and giving it to the non-profit side of the system is the best way for me to serve what I love.  I feel that the money abstraction and the distance it puts between us and the effects of our actions makes us feel disconnected and alone.

I also don’t like our culture’s valuing of measurable impact over everything else.  Much of what is precious to me cannot be measured.  What’s the measurable value of a 5000 year old yew tree?  What’s the measurable value of caring for a disabled child?

“May what I do flow from me like a river
no forcing
and no holding back
the way it is with children.”
-Rilke

So I don’t know what we all should do exactly, and I don’t know what I will do beyond the short term.  I’m skeptical of money and the dominant culture’s value system.  I want to trust what makes me feel alive over our culture’s normal stories that usually are rooted in fear.  I recognize that I’m one of the most privileged people in the world.  I know most people do not have the options that I have.  I don’t mean to judge, only to encourage.

Right now what’s happening is I’ve been living in a homeless protest encampment in Berkeley the last couple months, which has given me still another perspective on our society.  It got interesting this weekend and we’re fighting eviction, hoping to benefit and inspire homeless communities around the country.  With all of the disaster and war refugees today, and housing crises in many places, there are more and more people who can’t have regular housing, and we could learn to live together with more kindness and understanding.  I’m also involved with the community here in other ways like Food Not Bombs.  I expect soon I’ll be moving on to other places, to learn and to live in service to what I love.  To restore soil and help plants grow and be community.

I’ve learned I don’t need much money to live well myself, so I don’t need to earn it for myself.  Perhaps my perspective on money and impact will change and I’ll eventually decide that earning money and supporting my many friends who don’t have much money in their various causes is the best way to contribute, and then I might return to a job, but we’ll see.  “It is no measure of health to be well adjusted to a profoundly sick society.”

Wherever I am, I’ll be with some kind of community learning how to live in healthier relationship with each other and with the earth.  There’ll be dark moments and joyous moments, and this is life.  Life is good.  Whatever comes, I will give attention to the beauty around me, the beauty of community and of nature and of every form.  Beauty everywhere begs our attention.

“An eye is meant to see things.
The soul is here for its own joy.

A head has one use: For loving a true love.
Feet: To chase after.

Rumi quote Spirit Mind

Rumi quote Spirit Mind

carol return hitch from Taos, New Mexico

carol the blogger on her return hitch from Taos, New Mexico to Santa Fe. One side of my sign said Santa Fe, the other, Fanta Se

Informative & Captivating Art & Education re: BP Oil Disaster April 20th, 2010

Yesterday was 5 years to the day since the April 20, 2010 BP Oil catastrophe in the Gulf of Mexico, the worst oil disaster in US history. As much as 60,000 barrels of oil was spilled, and just because the oil leak was capped and you can’t see the oil on the surface of the water, doesn’t mean that the oil just disappeared. It will take a decade to understand the full impact and repercussions of the event.

By clicking here you can send a message to the US Government organized by NRDC to protect our Earth, it’s creatures and the communities of people >>>

TAKE ACTION NOW Stop New Offshore Drilling Off Our Arctic and Atlantic Coasts

I am captivated with the choice of medium, the excellent artwork and articulate communication about this horrific event; including BP’s negligent injection of dispersal into the water to try to dissolve the oil with other harsher chemicals, causing much more harm than good.

This is a fantastic and thorough description of the disaster and regardless (or perhaps because it is animated like a cartoon) it is more accurate and meaningful.

BP Oil Disaster,  Elizabeth Kujawinski, BP, injection dispersant

BP Oil Disaster Interview Elizabeth Kujawinski re BP injection of dispersant

I am absolutely in tears because of the import of this disaster to all of the local inhabitants and particularly the creatures that make this area their home. BP Oil Disaster blank slate Written and Illustrated by Perrin R. Ireland

BP Oil Disaster,hydrothermal vent

BP Oil Disaster hydrothermal vent

Take 5 minutes to watch this fantastic video and be informed.

BP Oil Disaster, Christopher Reddy, Oceanographer

BP Oil Disaster Interview Christopher Reddy Oceanographer

BP Oil Disaster,  Perrin R. Ireland , eaking oil

BP Oil Disaster Written and Illustrated by Perrin R. Ireland leaking oil

BP Oil Disaster,Why do we keep doing it? (Drilling in Deep Water, Drilling at ALL

BP Oil Disaster Why do we keep doing it? (Drilling in Deep Water – Drilling at ALL

Thank you so much for the comprehensive effort in educating yourself, incorporating the interviews, communicating and creating such lovely art in the description and sharing it with us all, in hopes of educating the public about having a clue and giving a fuck about something other than money and profit.

BP Oil Disaster, Written, Illustration, Perrin R. Ireland, experrinment

BP Oil Disaster Written and Illustrated by Perrin R. Ireland @ experrinment

BP Oil Disaster onearth dot org gulf

BP Oil Disaster onearth dot org gulf

Carol Keiter, blogger

Carol Keiter the blogger

I’m in tears and rather disgusted, especially when these large-scale oil and petroleum operations don’t seem to be going away, but rather escalating. That means that We The People have to stand up, and do What We Can, to make the world a healthy and joyful place in which all creatures are respected and all of the earth is cherished.

Take Action Now!