the DROP 3/10/2020: Public electricity, Survival myths debunked, Small space gardening, Healthy food storage?

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The last several weeks have been quite alarming for all world residents as concerns of various origin have peppered our conversations and news feeds.

The fear of COVID-19, the stock market crashing, oil price wars, and locusts swarms of biblical proportion are causing dissonance in the minds of many.

Response to these events seem to have polarized among people across the internet. To panic and act irrationally is certainly to be avoided, but so is to remain uninformed.

So that you can make your own safe, informed decisions about your future, we've compiled articles about preparedness tactics, self-reliant gardening, food preparations, clean energy and sustainability options, and coronavirus updates.




Water Crisis






Water Mission / March 6, 2020
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Credit: Pixabay
"From high infant and mother mortality rates to inflated household expenses, the effects of the global water crisis are costly and far-reaching. Across the world, 2,100,000,000 people bear the physical, financial, social, and emotional costs of the lack of access to clean, safe water"


The cost of the global water crisis is one that humanity cannot afford for long. Funds, resources, health, and even life; these taxing factors are much more prevalent in developing countries where the struggle to find clean water is a part of everyday life.

Water Mission, a non-profit organization which builds safe water systems in developing countries, published an article which lists the top most costly factors that are caused by the global water crisis.

Read full article here.





Preparedness






Natural News / March 4, 2020
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Credit: Sebastian Pociecha / Unsplash

"There are many beliefs about survival and preparedness that circulate all over the internet. Some of these myths can be dangerous — especially if people continue to believe them– since they can lead people to accidents or even worse. Here are six dangerous survival myths and here’s why they aren’t true."



Preparedness and survival skills might not be commonly utilized in day-to-day life for most people, but lack of it in a dire situation might mean the difference between life and death. Like a spare tire or life insurance policy, we hope to never need it but we better be sure it's there.

But with the myriad of survival websites and sources circulating the internet, it is difficult to distinguish between what information is actually useful, and what is fluff. This article published by Natural News highlights several important points about survival and preparedness that need clarification.

Read full article here.




Business Insider / March 4, 2020
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Credit: Ella Olsson / Unsplash

"Even if you’re stuck at home, you don’t have to live on soup and rice, according to Caroline West Passerrello, a registered dietitian and spokesperson for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. A little advance planning can keep you and your family eating well for weeks. Here’s what Passerrello and two other nutritionists recommend so you can keep eating healthy during a quarantine."



The fear of a government quarantine or lockdown due to an outbreak or any major disaster is a strong motivator to stock up on food and necessary supplies. The usual round-up of items might be plenty of canned and dried foods and items high in caloric value. If survival is the priority,  it is assumed that healthy options for food are usually less important in these situations.

But is it possible to maintain a fairly healthy diet when stockpiling food for emergency situations? An article published by Business Insider features the input of three nutritionists who say so.

Read full article here.






Sustainability






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Credit: Diego PH / Unsplash
"In response to the revelations of utility management malfeasance, California’s legislators and community members are calling for a public takeover of the electric utility. Governor Gavin Newsom has called the bankruptcy filing a “Godsend” for the opportunity to create a safer public utility that serves the people. The bankruptcy of PG&E presents a unique opportunity to buy grid infrastructure and redirect investment into public goods, like resilient solar and battery storage, rather than private profits."


Recent disasters such as the wildfires in California have exposed the trouble many residents face with privately owned energy companies, often proving allegiance to profit rather than to consumers. A trend toward public electric utilities and away from private companies has begun to spark in communities across the United States.

This article by the Institute for Local Self-Reliance lists the different communities that are pushing toward public electric utilities and the steps needed to get there.

Read full article here.




Phys.org / March 5, 2020
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Credit: Tomsk Polytechnic University
"Scientists from Tomsk Polytechnic University jointly with the University of Lille (France) have developed a new material capable of purifying water effectively from oil products. It is based on an ordinary household polyurethane sponge. The research team made it superhydrophobic—it repels water, while effectively sorbing oil product molecules. The results were published in Separation and Purification Technology."


With water purification being an essential component to sustainable living, scientists are seeking more efficient means of removing contaminants. Scientists at Tomsk Polytechnic University have developed a material that is capable of absorbing oil from water. The potential for this product to aid in cleaning oceans from oil spills and to purify drinking water from pollution is highly anticipated.

Read full article here.





Phys.org / March 4, 2020
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Credit: Swinburne University of Technology
"This material, which incorporates industrial waste products such as fly ash produced by coal-fired power stations, is especially suited for construction in earthquake zones—in which the brittle nature of conventional concrete often leads to disastrous building collapses."


Researchers from Swinburne University of Technology are developing a cement-free concrete composed of waste products. It uses 36% less energy than traditional cement-concrete and is quite bendable, reducing risk of cracking and wear.

Read full article here.






Permaculture






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Credit: Tucker Good / Unsplash
"It's easy to build a self watering planter and cheap as well. It'll cost around $5.00 or less. A self-watering container is constructed using two containers. The reservoir and the planting container. Inside of the reservoir container a wicking basket is placed. The easiest thing to use is a half-pound deli container that has holes drilled around it. "


The idea of homesteading seems to be gaining interest among people across all environments. But many of those who reside in smaller living spaces might resist entertaining the idea due to the assumption that they don't the necessary means and space to get started.

An article by Mother Earth News shows how those who live in apartments and lofts don't necessarily need to wait to buy a plot of land until they can start on their homesteading dreams. A small apartment can suffice a small garden for an affordable price.

Read full article here.




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Credit: Joshua Lanzarini / Unsplash
"Start seeds off under the protection of a greenhouse, tunnel or cold frame, or use a sunny indoor windowsill. Use a propagator for tender crops like tomatoes, or secure clear plastic over the top of pots with a rubber band."


The seed is the source of all gardening, and thus, proper knowledge of their nature should be sought after. This video gives a detailed overview of the things you should know about seeds.






Contagion Awareness






Think Global Health / March 10, 2020
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Credit: Lucrezia Carnelos / Unsplash

"Launched on January 21, 2020, our editorial team has been monitoring the unfolding coronavirus outbreak and its economic and social consequences. We will be updating this timeline frequently as new developments are reported. You can access all of Think Global Health’s coronavirus coverage here."



Think Global Health publishes a continually updated timeline of the progression of the coronavirus outbreak starting from its earliest discovered case on December 1st, 2019. The website includes information on the number of confirmed cases in each country as well as current travel bans and border restrictions.

Be sure to check the site regularly for updates on how to keep you and your family safe.

Read full article here.




Business Insider / March 3, 2020
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Credit: Anna Earl / Unsplash
"All you really need is alcohol, either isopropyl (rubbing) or ethyl (used in beer, wine, and spirits). As long as the solution is at least 60% alcohol, you can rub the liquid into your hands and let them air dry, then you’ll have effectively sanitized them."


With the fear of viruses spreading throughout our communities, items such as hand sanitizers and disinfectant wipes are quickly being bought up. This article explains how to make your own hand sanitizer with a few simple and inexpensive ingredients.

Read full article here.






Climate and Environment






Green Biz / March 3, 2020
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Joel Makower
"Resilience — a term used widely in health, well-being and sustainability — refers to the ability to withstand misfortune or a shock to the system. It applies at the personal as well as the societal level. A resilient person is one who can grow and thrive in the face of adversity — a financial setback, job loss, health crisis, relationship ending, death of a loved one or any of a number of other physical or psychological misfortunes. Similarly, a resilient community, city or nation is one that can bounce back from any of a wide range of setbacks."


Resilience is a term used to describe tenacity in the face of adversity over time and the ability to bounce back. Considering the chaos at the world's stage currently, this word has been exchanged between officials and citizens alike and perhaps has even garnered new meaning.

Joel Makower, the chairman of GreenBiz, gives his opinion on what is causing our current strife, what it means to be resilient in our current age, and what we can do to overcome.

Read full article here.






Aquaponics






Aquaponics Revolution / Feb 25, 2020
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Credit: Kentucky State University, 2019 Aquaponics Conference

"The main aquaponis system input is the fish food. Therefore, it would be logical to conclude that without fish, we don’t have plants fertilizer any longer. However, in practice we can remove the fish from an established aquaponics system and see the plants continuing to grow for months. So what is happening there?"


Aquaponics is quickly gaining much popularity as a sustainable farming method, combining the benefits of aquaculture and hydroponics.

Live fish are a major component of an aquaponics system, presenting many variables which require thoughtful consideration. But is it possible to run an aquaponics system without fish, at least for a period of time? This article by Aquaponics Revolution explains how.

Read full article here.




This concludes this round-up edition. Be sure to sign up for our mailing list to receive the next round-up article. We'll keep you updated with news on water security, self-sufficiency, environmental issues, permaculture, and everything you'd need for sustainable, safe living.



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I'm Jeremiah Castelo, the owner of World Water Reserve. I'm a writer and researcher with a particular interest in sustainability and rural living, water scarcity, and innovative water purification methods. I utilize my multimedia and communication experience in the NGO and humanitarian fields to bring light to important topics. My passion is to educate others on the reality of the global water crisis and on ways to sustain themselves and their families in the midst of it.

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