“OMG- 2 kids saving the world”


Mother Nature gives the 2 Thumbs UP Award  to  Carter and Olivia
Here is a story about two amazing kids who are making a difference.

The nonprofit One More Generation (OMG) is :

helping clean up our environment,
save endangered species
helping kids “Give Back”.
Their mission statement says it all “We are a nonprofit organization dedicated to the preservation of endangered species and our environment.  Our goal is to ensure all endangered species survive at least One More Generation… and beyond.”
What these guys are accomplishing is an inspiration to youth and families around the world.

Carter  is 91/2 years old  and his sister Olivia is 8. This dynamic duo are so passionate about wanting to make a difference that they started their own organization called One More Generation (OMG)

The two students have been adopting Cheetah’s in South Africa (from the Ann Van Dyk Cheetah Center) for years and as they started asking why some animals needed adopting, we told them that unless someone stepped in and helped, there might not be any Cheetah’s left in the wild by the time they had their own kids. Well that was all we had to say and these two sprang into action.

OMG’s, Carter and Olivia have been involved in numerous initiatives both locally and globally to include:

They just recently returned from making a trip to the Gulf where they delivered badly needed Animal Rescue Supplies to the folks at the Marine Mammal & Sea Turtle Rescue Center in New Orleans. You can check out what they did in the Gulf to help save Sea Turtles and watch their video about the trip as well.

They are helping Sharks and Whales too .

They have been in communications with Pete Bethune (Ady Gil Captain from Sea Shepard) who suggested we attend one of their Nov World-Wide Anti Whaling demonstration in Atlanta.Here are pictures from the whaling protest. It was Carter and Olivia’s first demonstration and they absolutely loved it.

Carter and Olivia recently won the Grand Prize in a Nestles Heroes Contest. The prize is essentially an ice cream party for them and up to 50 of their friends. They both decided to share the prize with their classmates at their school since the entire school has been so helpful with our organization from the start. The ice-cream party was last Friday and was held at the Fayette Montessori School in Fayetteville GA. All the kids had a blast. Here is a link to the story

Working with our State Legislatures on proposing Legislative Language changes to the current laws written by the GA DNR (Georgia Department of Natural Resources) in an effort to help stop the Rattlesnake Roundups in our state. They have partnered with the folks from the Center of Biological Diversity out of AZ and their legal team has helped them write the language changes we want to introduce in Spring. So far these two enterprising young students have collected over 1,100 signatures on a petition asking for change to the Roundups. Last week they met with the head of the GA DNR to discuss changes for the future of these events.

They are working to try and raise $50,000.00 for a Cheetah Rescue program in South Africa. The Ann Van Dyke Cheetah Center runs the program and they are doing a tremendous job. The process is slow and funds are extremely hard to come-by but they just held a silent auction a couple of weeks ago where they auctioned off painting kids in the community did of their favorite endangered species.

They are working with various organizations in our immediate area on raising awareness to the plight of the many endangered species across the globe. We have an educational program that we present to the visitors of the Atlanta Zoo, The Fernbank Museum in Atlanta, the Georgia Aquarium, The Atlanta Botanical Garden, and the Cochran Mill Nature Center.

They are in talks with the folks from The Art Miles Mural Project, which is an international organization that raises awareness to various initiatives globally through art. We recently proposed to them that we collaborate on such a project about endangered species. We are very excited about the prospect of organizing such an event.
Carter and Olivia were just invited to be a guest speaker at the Caring for Creation 2011 Conference at Lake Junaluska, NC in March/April of 2011. They are preparing their presentation for their largest presentation to-date.

Thanks to a meeting these two kids had with our State Congressman Lynn Westmoreland, a further meeting was just held with Deputy District Director Andy Bush were Carter and Olivia discussed the needed support for HR14 which covers Ocean Acidification. Carter and Olivia will be reporting on the results soon. Here is our link to the issue.

They just hosted a “Water Event” at the Fernbank Museum where they discussed the importance of water on all living things and also partnered with an organization called Ryan’s Well which helps build water wells to poor villages around the world to ensure everyone has access to clean drinking water. Also on that same day, they participated in a celebration at our Sate Capital by being part of “Uniting Voices”: An Interfaith Worship Service Calling for Climate Justice, which is an event that hopes to raise awareness to the problems with our climate do to pollution etc.

Both events were videoed for inclusion in the “One Day On Earth” organization that is hoping to document historical events from this special day and preserve them for future generations.

We are also now working on a joint project with the folks at Healthy Vending and the folks at TerraCycle in an effort to create a program designed to reduce the amount of plastic in our environment and we are working on a program with several local churches to help create a Ban on Single Use Plastic bags in our community since plastic is now the number one pollutant item in our oceans.

Finally, they are attempting to work on a joint project with Jungle Jack Hanna from the Columbus Zoo and or Jeff Corwin to help raise awareness of the issues regarding endangered species to kids nationwide. (This is one of the projects, which they really want to move forward with. Although we do not yet have confirmed date for meeting with either, we are still trying.

Everyone Can Make A Difference. Getting kids involved at an early age is our only hope to help change the global situation
around and what these two have accomplished is impressive.

Mother Nature gives you, Carter and Olivia her official  “2 Thumbs Up Award” and her eternal gratitude.


They are grateful for all donations.

Article submitted by Jim Ries. Thank you Jim.
Image 1. courtesy of    http://bit.ly/ghiDfl
Image 2. courtesy of   http://bit.ly/hSgGKD

“Kids have bee project paper accepted by Royal Society”


Valid scientific research is being done by 8 to 10 year olds in london, England. To boot, a hand written elementary school science project has made it into a peer-reviewed journal from Britain’s prestigious Royal Society. The scientific organization, more than three centuries old and includes some of the world’s most eminent scientists, said the children research findings were a advance” in the field of insect color and pattern vision.
Biology Letters published a report Wednesday . The students investigated the way bumblebees see colors and patterns.Working with a neuroscientist from University College London, the children carefully documented their methodology and discussed the data they collected.
The group learned to trained bumbleees Bombus terrestris, buff-tailed bumble-bee to go to targets of different colors by giving them a sugar reward, and reported that the insects are able to learn and remember cues based on color and pattern.
The study successfully went through peer review — although its presentation was slightly unconventional.
“Scientists do experiments on monkeys, because they are similar to man, but bees could actually be close to man too,” the introduction read. The report was peppered with other amusing phrasing and diagrams drawn in colored pencil.
Scientists who commented on the kids’ report in the journal say although the experiments were modest and lacked statistical analyses, they were cleverly and correctly designed and hold their own compared to those conducted by highly trained specialists.
Laurence Maloney and Natalie Hempel wrote in commentary alongside the children’s report.
Beau Lotto, the scientist who coordinated the study, said she hoped the project could inspire people to approach science in a way that’s creative and fun.
“We like bees. Science is cool and fun because you get to do stuff that no one has ever done before,” the children concluded.

Bombus terrestris, the Buff-tailed Bumblebee or Large Earth Bumblebee is one of the most numerous bumblebee species in Europe. The queen is 2–2.7 cm long, while the workers are 1½–2 cm. The workers are characterized by their white-ended abdomens and look (apart from their yellowish bands being darker in direct comparison). The queen has a buff-white abdomen (“tail”) tip.
Resources

Excerpts courtesy of   http://yhoo.it/fDdBlg

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/dHb7g9

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/ig0msw

“Audubon Xmas Bird Counts” (CBC’s) -new holiday tradition-help Mother Nature”


Host a CBC 4 KIDS in your community during Christmas and New Years…Anywhere!
CBC 4 Kids! (In Tucson, AZ)

“If a child is to keep alive his inborn sense of wonder, he need the companionship of at least one adult who can share it, rediscovering with him the joy, excitement and mystery of the world we live in.”  Rachel Carson

Every year for over a century, “Christmas Bird Counts” (CBC’s) have been organized across America through Audubon, mainly for adults, during mid-December and early January. Young kids with their families are often not included with this important 24 hour rigorous “citizen science” effort…so we created the CBC 4 Kids…and families… a stand alone half day event instilling some of the important basic ingredients of this grand old Audubon tradition. The objective is to have fun and potentially create a “hometown team” of birders and conservationists for the future while encouraging families to enjoy and respect nature together.

Start simple…It only takes 2-3 teams to get started! Target a date over Christmas and New Years between the 2nd weekend in December and  the 3rd weekend in January while the winter birds are settled. It is a wonderfully simple, healthy, holiday celebration for almost any school, youth group, Audubon Chapter or nature center, wildlife refuge or local community…Anywhere!

Getting Started!

1. FIND A GOOD HOST – Find a good facility & fun partner to support a simple half day event that could provide a comfortable space, volunteers, snacks, water, bathrooms and basic supplies. Examples that might work – Audubon Chapter, Audubon Sanctuary, Ducks Unlimited, National Park, local community center, park & rec. department, a national wildlife refuge with a visitor center, nature center, civic clubs like Rotary, 4H, Boys & Girls Club, Scouts…any organization that wants to encourage the family to get out in nature.

2. Set Date & Time – The half day event (approx – 8:30AM-2:00PM) can take place on any day you choose from the 2nd weekend in Dec. through the 3rd weekend in January.  Birds are mostly settled into their winter habitats. This is a very busy holiday season for families and the traditional Audubon CBC which is a totally separate adult event used for science and research. So if your community offere the traditional CBC work around their dates.  You can also learn from their efforts.

3. Birding Leaders Are Needed – Connect with local Audubon Chapter or birding organization, nature organization or individual birders for several experienced adult birding team leaders that enjoy working with kids and families.
 Junior leaders with birding experience can be very helpful.

4. Establish Birding Routes In Advance - Define good safe (90 minute) birding routes in multiple locations in advance with defined “start and finish” points. Use Google Maps. Half mile walking routes work for this age group. Diversifying the habitats to enrich the variety of birds discovered.  Encourage birding leaders to scout out their birding routes before the event day. If you back track on the same route only add new species not already seen.

5. Target Age Group (Ages 8-15 Works) Middle school or junior high is ideal. Note: Younger family members (very young birders) are invited to the brown bag lunch celebration at noon with adult supervision to enjoy the festivities and kids presentations. Some events choose to offer a “special” program for young birders while the teams of older kids with an adult are actually out birding. The activity works well for bilingual kids and underserved kids. This is not about dropping kids off and babysitting!  A parent or adult family member must attend the event with each child in the field.

6. Birding Team Size – (Ideally, 4-6 kids per team) Observing parents are not considered “birding team members”. Parents come along to help with logistics and to be “quiet observers” facilitators and drivers. The birding team need to work together in the field with their birding leaders to get optimum safe and timely results.

7. Press Release & Public Meeting - We suggest writing a press release and offer a helpful public information meeting 3-4 weeks before the actual event date. Get the word out early!

8. Sign Up & Key Elements for Organizers - Advanced sign up helps.  Be prepared in advance with the rules with birding routes, disclaimer forms, safety issues, one common bird check list (25-50 local birds) for each team and begin team sign up asap. Allow for any organizations, classrooms and individuals to have their own small team if they choose to come as a group. Pre-assigning birding teams, routes and leaders before the day of the event helps. There will be new people showing up on the event day.

9. What to Bring & Wear:

binoculars, scope, field guide, water, snacks/lunch. comfortable shoes, hat, sunscreen, etc.  Always dress for the weather. Local Audubon Chapters, ecology and nature centers and schools often have a supply of binoculars.

For more details and to join or start a team:

In Tucson, AZ. contact.

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of   http://bit.ly/ftgApM

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/g37PgV

Image 1. courtesy of    http://bit.ly/fYaywx

Image 2. courtesy  of   http://bit.ly/gozUmn

“Tarball stew coming to beach near you”


What are tarballs anyway?

Tarballs can be small to large chunks of crude oil and debris. They may be  dark in color congealed oil globs that stick to our feet, skin, sand, rocks, plants and soil.

(Example only tarballs depicted in image to the right.)

During the first few hours after a crude oil spill, the oil spreads into a  slick. Winds and waves tear the slick into smaller patches that are scattered over a much wider area. Weathering changes  the appearance of the oil.
First, the lighter components of the oil and methane gas mixed with it evaporates, leaving the heavier crude behind. Then some of this crude mixes with water to form an emulsion that often looks like reddish dark brown chocolate pudding. This emulsion is much thicker and stickier than the original oil. Winds, temperature, weather and waves then continue to stretch and tear the oil patches into smaller pieces, or tarballs. Hard and crusty on the outside while being soft and gooey on the inside, like a toasted marshmallow. tarballs may be as large like the one in the picture above or small coin-sized.

Tarballs are very persistent in the marine environment and if picked up by the deep ocean currents can travel long distances. The damage this goo reeks on the environment and all living tings and people is unknown.   Do not let children, animals  or pregnant women play with tarballs or on oily beaches.

Caution
If you are especially sensitive to chemicals, including the hydrocarbons found in crude oil and petroleum products avoid contact with them. They may have an allergic reaction or develop rashes even from brief contact with oil.

Contact with oil should be avoided.

If contact occurs, wash the area with soap and water, baby oil, or a widely used, safe cleaning compound such as the cleaning paste sold at auto parts stores. Avoid using solvents, gasoline, kerosene, diesel fuel, or similar products on the skin. These products, when applied to skin, present a greater health hazard than the smeared tarball itself.

Report tarball sightings

If you notice unusual numbers of tarballs on the beaches, call the U. S. Coast Guard any time at 800-424-8802.
References

Excerpts courtesy of  http://yhoo.it/9sCy3i

Excerpts courtesy of  http://bit.ly/dd39YC

Excerpts courtesy of    http://bit.ly/divjzh

Image courtesy of   http://yhoo.it/aTebiy

“Help cool Mother Nature with your garden plants + trees this year!”


Cool our climate by planting a garden this year.

Use garden tools and products that decrease your carbon foot print:
1. Weed, prune and rake leaves by hand
2. Use an electric or push lawn mower.
3. Use home made/organic compost and natural pest-control methods.
4. Avoid peat, using compost or peat-free potting and seed-starting mixes instead.

Plant trees and shrubs that fit your climate zone :
1. Plant trees and shrubs that have a long life span and plant them on the east, west or south side of their home.
2. Position new trees where they will shade your home in summer or provide protection from winter winds.

3. Trees help beautify the community, shade buildings to conserve energy thereby reducing carbon emissions resulting from energy production.

4. Trees provide habitat for wildlife and  trap air pollutants.

5. Trees control stormwater runoff.

6. Trees block soil erosion.

7. Trees transpire moisture from their leaves which absorbs heat and helps cool air temperatures at the hottest times of year and reduces the urban heat island effect.

8. Plant trees and plants that fit your hardiness zone. Check with the beautification council in your city for trees best for your area. Avoid trees that are susceptible to insect infestations.

Compost-recycle yard clippings and food waste ( not meat, dessert or processed food scraps.
* Make compost bin to reduce heat-trapping methane emissions from landfills.
* Use compost in the garden to increase carbon sequestering in the soil.

Green up your lawn.
* After mowing the grass on your lawn by leaving the grass clippings to fertilize the soil, reducing the need for added fertilizer and increasing carbon storage.
* Minimize watering, which has been linked to increased emissions of heat-trapping nitrous oxide from lawns.
Install a drip system and harvest your rain and grey water for garden use.

Encourage climate-friendly organic farms in your area.
* Support farmers who adopt climate-friendly agricultural practices such as cover cropping and crop rotation and who reduce their use of chemical fertilizers, insecticides and herbicides.
Buy local climate friendly organic produce.

Help cool Mother Nature with your garden this year!


To show your support for Climate-Friendly Gardens 
click here

Resources
Excerpts
courtesy of   thepetitionsite.com/takeaction

Image 1. courtesy of  http://bit.ly/chapyX

Video courtesy of  YOUTUBE.com

Image 2. courtesy of  peocom.com/tree.gif

Map courtesy of  accuracyproject.org/PlantZoneMap.jpg

“Az gov. education/environment-two wrongs don’t equal a right”


AZ Governor and Legislature fails to protect the state’s  natural treasures this season.

Everything and people associated with protecting our air, resources, national and state parks  lost this legislative session.

This session seems to have been run by the most myopic state representatives in recent history. People did not work as collaborative teams,  they found few things to agree on and what was passed lead to some very poor bills moving forward.

to those of us that care about our state’s future health care for the individual as well as what he breathes, drinks and the nature parks for recreation and species preservation there was an extreme lack of support.

Neither the legislature or the governor could be counted to protect Arizona’s dwindling groundwater, rivers and streams, the state parks system or education.

The legislature passed and the governor signed a bill to weaken the state’s aquifer protection permit program, a program that institutes protective measures for groundwater rather than after-the-fact clean up. Weakening this program means that future generations will have more polluted groundwater.

More than half of our state parks could be closed by year’s end, and, without additional funding, nine more parks will likely close. These  parks include natural areas, historic places, archaeological sites and cultural resources. The state park system has suffered its most severe cuts in recent years, down from $26 million in January 2009 to possible less than $7.5 million today.

Arizonans yesterday past in an override election, an amendment to increase taxes to fund education after the legislature drained from the educational funds.

More and more Arizonan must take back the responsibility to monitor who we elect or or air, water, health, education and desert biome will become unfit to inhabit.

Resources

Excerpts courtesy of  arizona.sierraclub.org

Image courtesy of  cap-az.com

“Hope- progress for children and environmental education”


Over 100 House Members Now Support No Child Left Inside (NCLI)

House cosponsors of the No Child Left Inside Act now exceeds 100! Nine new co-sponsors signed on in one week. Our Congress can more positive bills through their chambers. The NCLI ‘s bill now has 103 co-sponsors, including Representative Dale Kildee, who chairs the subcommittee that will reauthorize the Elementary and Secondary Education Act. Congratulations to the bill’s champion, Congressman John Sarbanes, and thanks to all who have urged members of Congress to support NCLI! To see a complete list of current co-sponsors, click here.

environmental education

We  need the following key members from both the House and Senate Committees.

Help us convince them to make a difference for our world’s safe keeping.

Representatives: Altmire, Tonko, Pierluisi, Sablan, Kline, Petri, Hoekstra, Castle, and Biggert

Senators: Bingaman, Brown (OH), Hagan, Franken, Merkley, and Enzi

No Child Left Inside Coalition, this group of elementary school students spoke with Secretary Duncan about their school’s environmental education projects during Earth Day events on the national Mall.

Still Time to Help Fund the NCLI Advocacy Campaign

To ensure that the NCLI Act is embedded in the reauthorized Elementary and Secondary Education Act, we are focusing every bit of our resources on our Capital Hill advocacy campaign. To that end, we are STILL working toward meeting the $25,000 matching challenge from the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

You can help by making a tax deductible contribution, no matter how big or small to:

CBF for No Child Left Inside, 6 Herndon Avenue, Annapolis, MD 21403.

Enormous thanks to all those individuals and organizations who have given already!

Member Plus Two Challenge

To date, the NCLI Coalition has more than 1,650 member organizations from across the country! Our political successes are due to the strength and diversity of our membership. Please help us build that strength and diversity by recruiting two new member organizations in your area before Memorial Day, May 31, 2010. Increased membership in states such as Iowa, Minnesota, Montana, Nebraska, Nevada, North and South Dakota and Wyoming is particularly important to demonstrating our grassroots support! New members can join by filling out a simple form here:

More Momentum for NCLI

As both the House and Senate work on revisions to the Elementary and Secondary Education Act, it is critical that the NCLI Coalition continue to meet with key legislators, add co-sponsors, and demonstrate broad grassroots support. The next several weeks and months will be absolutely critical to our long-term success, so please stay tuned for regular updates and remain poised for action. We can’t do it without you!

Help our children learn about the wonders of Mother Nature through environmental education  at their own school.

Schooled in the wonder of life they should learn to appreciate and take better care of their heritage.

Resources

Image courtesy of  thedailygreen.com

Text courtesy of

“Bleeding the Grand Canyon”


The US strip mining operations are doing to the land what the oil companies have so adeptly done to change our oceans and coastal areas.

It is time to stand up and be counted and stop this destruction

Keep the Grand Canyon  wild and free of mining pollutants.

Roger Clark from the Grand Canyon Trust takes an EcoFlight over four uranium mines situated near the Grand Canyon National Park.

Look through the looking glass into the possible future of what’s in store for the region and its watersheds that bring water to more than 25 million people.

Can we afford the equivalent of the Gulf oil “spill” in our Grand Canyon?

It will also show you the “Arizona 1″ uranium mine, which is by far the greatest threat to the health, cultural integrity, and economic well-being of the Havasupai People; perhaps even their very existence.

Can we afford to destroy the waterways through mine pollution into our headways and tributaries?

According to media reports, the Calgary-based company Denison Mines has re-opened the Arizona 1 mine “In defiance of legal challenges and a U.S. Government moratorium,” says Indigenous Activist and musician Klee Benally.

Benally explains that “U.S. Secretary of Interior Ken Salazar initially called for a two-year moratorium on new mining claims in a buffer zone of 1 million acres around Grand Canyon National Park, but the moratorium (didn’t) include existing claims such as Denison’s.” Nor did it address mining claims outside of the buffer zone.

Because of the recent increase in the price of uranium and the absurd push for nuclear power, more than a thousand mining claims have been staked in the region.

Look at a video showing the bleeding of the Grand Canyon and the pollution and scarring of one of our most treasured resources.

Did you know any foreign government can mine in our nature parks and then take the ore and not be held to environmentally sound practices. Why should they care? -It is not their mother country’s greatest treasures?

What about the wildlife that call the canyon home both on the land and in the waterways. Do we want to sacrifice them big and small to death either fast or slow from pollution?

We must stay informed to keep our water supplies clean and health or ultimately we will pay for it with our health and the lives of our children. We must keep our lands and seas clean to insure our life.

Get involved. Send us your comments and questions we will keep you posted.

Sign the petition to protect the Grand Canyon today. Mother Nature and Nature’s Crusaders thanks you.

Video click here

Resources

Video courtesy of YOUTUBE.com

Image courtesy of   http://bit.ly/9YGjVo

“Something is wrong with this picture- Gulf oil spill”


Toxins, dispersant, delays and red tape and let us see if we can create the magic bullet now…

If a doctor waited to learn how to repair a broken leg until a patient came in with a broken leg, he would be sued for incompetence and jailed.

Why is it that oil (or mining) companies can wait to build something that might help protect the ocean and its creatures  until after the disaster happens?

And no matter what they are now building or new technique they may be try to use congress must approve it!

The lack of efficiency of our US disaster relief system appalls me.


How many ways we can create more chaos in the Gulf-things being tried:

This is not a research project mate if you drill into Mother Earth and extract toxic gas and oil then you should now how to control and clean up your messes.

  • spreading the dispersant and at depths of 5,000 feet (1,524 meters) has never been tried
  • BP has already dispatched 3,000 gallons of the dispersant, which they are expecting to arrive in the Gulf of Mexico soon, but the proposal is still awaiting final governmental approval. Time to evaluate-haven’t you had decades?
  • Skimmers surround the oil floating on the ocean surface, but poor weather will halt their operation
  • Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) are  being deployed underwater to monitor the situation at the blowout preventer (BOP) and wellhead. The wellhead it seems has a history of leaks.
  • BP now wants to get better picture or imaging techniques and improved ROVs available for the cleanup effort.
  • A new  relief well and the three collection domes (still under construction), may be used to encapsulate the leaking oil and funnel it to a waiting ship on the surface.
  • The Materials Management Service has given permission to begin drilling the relief well. Drilling will likely be initiated within 48 hours.

Resources

Excerpts and Image courtesy of http://bit.ly/byxx85

“Help save the cheetahs-see ya at the Reid Park Zoo”


Please join Cheetah Kids at the Reid Park Zoo and  help save the cheetah.

Monday April 26, 2010.

Learn how cheetahs and people in Namibia, Africa are co-existing successfully.

Dr. Markers educational programs, community work projects and many years of dedicated

work are helping the local economy in Namibia and the cheetahs have a chance at survival..

Monday at 5:30 PM you can meet the world’s greatest authority on cheetah conservation Dr Laurie Marker.

This is the first time Dr. Laurie Marker has come to Tucson, AZ.

We at Nature’s Crusaders congratulate you on you valuable research and work.

Welcome Dr. Marker!

Cheetah Conservation Fund works with all groups and individuals within the cheetah’s ecosystem to develop best practices in research, education and ecology and create a sustainable model from which all other species, including people, will benefit.


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