May 20, 2010 |
ANLONG, China - This small village on the Zouma River - inside the municipal boundaries of Chengdu, the capital of Sichuan province - is the site of a fascinating effort to fight one of China's biggest problems: the dangerous levels of pollution in its rivers and streams. "In the last 30 years, China's economic miracle has helped pull millions from poverty, but has put tremendous pressure on its ecosystems," said Ma Jun, whose 1999 book China's Water Crisis has been compared to Rachel Carson's Silent Spring . "Sixty percent of our rivers are polluted," and "300 million rural residents have no clean drinking water.
February 19, 1989 |
Sometimes, modern technology doesn't keep up with the past. Chris Petersheim, an Amish farmer from Lancaster, proved that common sense can beat modern technology when it comes to fighting ecological disasters. His farm was unaffected by the drought last summer. As an organic farmer, Petersheim uses no chemical fertilizers or pesticides on his 4 1/2 acres of land. He also works with horse-drawn plows instead of tractors and doesn't use electricity. But he still produces more than 32 different crops.
December 18, 1988 |
Organic farming can yield "real and significant" environmental and health benefits, but the jury is still out on whether it pays farmers to adopt such a strategy, two analysts write. More research "designed to increase the profitability of alternative agriculture deserves serious consideration," according to Pierre R. Crosson and Janet Ekey Ostrov. Farmers "receive few of the environmental benefits of alternative agriculture because many of these, such as improved water quality, occur off the farm, or like improved wildlife habitat, cannot be captured in economic terms," they wrote in a newsletter of Resources for the Future, a Washington- based environmental policy research organization.
July 19, 1993 |
Hal Taylor has a bachelor of arts degree in physics from Haverford College, a master's degree in meteorology from Massachusetts Institute of Technology and a doctorate in physics from the University of Iowa, but the degrees aren't the reason Jonathan Snipes has signed on as Taylor's assistant this summer. Taylor is not working as a physicist or meteorologist. He heads a local business that's been around since 1720 - exactly the type of business that Snipes, 33, a management consultant from Falls Township in Bucks County, wants to learn.
June 30, 1991 |
In Ken Muckenfuss' case, Mother knows best. Mother is Sandy Muckenfuss, who started growing sweet peppers, corn, tomatoes, cucumbers and onions without chemicals at the family farm in the early 1960s, long before most consumers knew anything about organic farming. More than 20 years later, Ken Muckenfuss has found that organic farming yields gold from the vegetable patch and fields of Mill Creek Farm in Medford. Well, not gold, said the younger Muckenfuss, but enough fruits and vegetables to satisfy the likes of Tony Chigounis, the owner of the Greenbrier in Cherry Hill who is featuring the produce from the farm during a summer-long culinary spotlight on organically grown New Jersey products.
April 20, 1989 |
To Ralph Nader, there's not a lot of difference between apples and automobiles, at least from the standpoint of symbolizing larger problems with an industry. Nader, the consumer rights advocate who made his mark with Corvairs, was at Delaware Valley College last week debating the safety of spraying apples with a chemical called Alar. "Alar is the proxy to be concerned about what's happening with our food supply," he said, "just as the Corvair was the proxy for which the nation became aware of auto safety.
March 24, 2001 |
Foot-and-mouth disease does not affect human health. But the epidemic striking animals in Europe is unsettling stomachs in other ways: The sight of thousands of burning animal carcasses may be inspiring more people to eat vegetarian and stirring up interest in organic food. Already, nearly four million of Britain's 60 million people eat "veggie," according to the U.K.-based Vegetarian Society. In the last month, phone calls to the society's hotline have doubled, hits on its Web site are up 20 percent, and the demand for more vegetarian recipes is way up, press officer Su Taylor said.
February 16, 2012
Pennypack Farm and Education Center in Horsham sponsors its third annual film series aimed at engaging neighbors in discussion about environmental issues. Each movie delves into a different aspect of sustainability with a focus on how small changes can make a big difference to the world. All screenings are at the nonprofit Ambler Theater, 108 E. Butler Ave., Ambler 19002. Tickets are $10 each. 215-345-7855 or amblertheatre.org/pennypack Doors open at 6 p.m. for a community expo, highlighting local organizations.
July 5, 2000 |
You may have heard of a kind of super-organic farming called biodynamics. It's based on ideas developed in 1924 by Rudolf Steiner (1861-1925), for a course given to a group of farmers near Breslau (which was then in the eastern part of Germany and is now Wroclaw in Poland). The course was developed in response to farmers' observations that soils had become depleted following the introduction of chemical fertilizers at the turn of the century. A basic ecological principle of biodynamics is to conceive of the farm as a unique organism.
January 29, 2016 |
Think It's a Wonderful Life and Oliver! - with a reptilian twist. Or Saving Green Fruit Loop. That works, too. About a week ago, Sally Mabon, a Princeton mom and policy researcher, was washing some tatsoi, a kind of Asian spinach bought at a local health-food store, only to find an unexpected houseguest - a little lizard nestled in the leaves. Surprised, she called over daughter Faye Steingart, the family's resident kindergartner, to take a peek. Admittedly, the little creature wasn't looking good: brown, shriveled, limp from a couple of days in the family's refrigerator.