Hi everyone..... well lucky for me today, my afternoon appointment was canceled. Yes, I'm an Artist on the side and apart from painting, I run my own Leadership Development Business alongside my husband. Anyway, I ended up free for the entire day, except for the telephone interview I have to do at 9:00am, sooooo.....what did I decided to do? My daughter and I decided to do breakfast at Starbucks then later we would have lunch at one of our best Malls.....The Falls at West Mall. We also did some work while in Starbucks as she is writing a book and she takes every opportunity to write a chapter. While she does that I write this post as well as complete some reports I have for work.
It's nice ever so often to work outside of the office and luckily for me, I can do that, especially if I don't have any appointments. I also tend to use my time at these coffee houses to create some more products for my websites and my Etsy shop. I completed another planner last night at home and I know it will help a lot of people as soon as people realise what they can do.
But that's not what I wanted to talk about. I went off track there. When I got home last night, I zoned out working on the New Problem Solver planner then it started to rain, which was odd as lately rain has been pretty scarce. In fact these days it is so hot I've been pretty dehydrated because I'm not a great water drinker. everywhere is dry and I think this has been the worst dry season we've had. Normally it is bad but this year the water levels have been so low that they are now scheduling when different communities will receive water. I went through years of not having enough water to fill the 2 small tanks I had. My house was littered with water containers in every corner or cranny I could fit one. It took us a few years before I got really fed-up with bathing in a bucket or not having enough water to wash clothes, or not having the water truck arrive to replenish my tanks. So finally we bought 4 huge tanks and to date, we no longer have to wonder when water was returning or if there was enough water in our tanks.
Compared to last year when the dry season was bad but not too bad, then the rainy season arrived and the rain was crazy. Last year, we had the worst rainy days EVER due to tropical depressions. It rained almost every day in a 3 weeks period. It was so bad those few months and especially the last week of the rainy season month, that people's houses were flooded out and they had to be rescued. It was bad!! My assistant lost everything as did a lot of other people/clients, plus one or two of my friends...and I mean they lost fridges, stoves, entire living room sets, vehicles, etc.
Fortunately, in times like these people come together to help and give. There were drives everywhere to get items to those in need. We persevered and people were re-instated. But some homes couldn't be saved and that is the difficult part. In comparison, with the dry season, we have to be very wary of the bush fires. One man has already lost his life when the bush fire spread and consumed his house while he lay asleep. Very sad and unfortunate situation.
What is interesting though, is despite this dry season where everything looks dry and barren when the rains arrive, and they will soon, the vegetation changes back to being as green as ever as if it was never dry. This island just amazes me with the weather changes that occur. But right now this place can get pretty warm even at night. This brings me to a piece I did one weekend when the weather was a bit dismal and foggy. Yes, I said foggy. I live in a valley that is surrounded by mountains so when it rains and the temperature drops it gets very misty in the mornings. It is so lovely and cozy. I love it. Do you see what I mean when I say the weather here can be so different at different times? Dry, breezy and brittle one time, rainy and foggy at another time, cool and breezy some other month.
The piece is called "Rainy Day in Santa Cruz". It has a somber look but I hope you like it. Any feedback is welcomed. Don't be too brutal though. Thanks.
Rainy Day in Santa Cruz
Watercolour painting I did.
Going back to the bad dry, hot, sunny weather. It's also very interesting that while some have been devastated due to fires, there are others who go on with their everyday lives and are untouched by all the chaos and calamity. Life is funny that way. Some get hit hard and others don't.
Is it that we need to learn something when these things happen? Or is it a message from the great God above? Or does he want us to think about how we're treating with the environment and is there a reason for the insane, confusing changes in the weather patterns? One thing is for sure...at these times it pushes home the question...Why is the dry season so bad, why is the rainy season so different and starting earlier followed by major flooding. And why is everything seem to be getting worst? What isn't something being done or is there anything we can do in the first place?
I know that here in Trinidad we need to be more considerate of our environment. Trinidadians treat the environment very badly. Trash is an issue, with the indiscriminate dumping, so watercourses are strewn with garbage. I hope their level of awareness improves at some point because I saw a documentary recently called Our Earth, and I was appalled by the information on the melting of the ice caps and how this is causing the increase the heat because the ice caps act as reflectors of the sun so there is less heat so less melting but when they start to melt more than there are more open water (black) patches which absorbs the sun's heat. The heat melts more icecaps etc. Melted ice caps affect the creatures that other larger animals feed on so they start to die off and the cycle continues until it reaches a point of scarcity for man. The heat of our planet also rises and there is also increased melting of the icecaps which causes increased floods or really horrific floods.heat of the sun the level of heat in the world, animals which in turn affects the human race.
Global Climate change
You may have heard about global warming. It seems that in the last 100 years the earth's temperature has increased about half a degree Celsius. This may not sound like much, but even half a degree can have an effect on our planet. Scientists who assess the planet's health see indisputable evidence that Earth has been getting warmer, in some cases rapidly. Most believe that human activity, in particular, the burning of fossil fuels and the resulting buildup of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere, have influenced this warming trend. In the past decade, scientists have documented record-high average annual surface temperatures and have been observing other signs of change all over the planet: in the distribution of ice, and in the salinity, levels, and temperatures of the oceans.
Scientists point out that sea levels have risen and fallen substantially over Earth's 4.6-billion-year history. But the recent rate of global sea level rise has departed from the average rate of the past two to three thousand years and is rising more rapidly—about one-tenth of an inch a year. A continuation or acceleration of that trend has the potential to cause striking changes in the world's coastlines. This higher temperature may be causing some floating icebergs to melt, but this will not make the oceans rise.
But the rising temperature and icebergs could play a small role in the rising ocean level. Icebergs are chunks of frozen glaciers that break off from landmasses and fall into the ocean. The rising temperature may be causing more icebergs to form by weakening the glaciers, causing more cracks and making ice more likely to break off. As soon as the ice falls into the ocean, the ocean rises a little. Rising sea level produces a cascade of effects. Bruce Douglas, a coastal researcher at Florida International University, calculates that every inch (2.5 centimeters) of sea-level rise could result in eight feet (2.4 meters) of the horizontal retreat of sandy beach shorelines due to erosion. Furthermore, when salt water intrudes into freshwater aquifers, it threatens sources of drinking water and makes raising crops problematic.
Oceans, in effect, mimic some functions of the human circulatory system. Just as arteries carry oxygenated blood from the heart to the extremities, and veins return blood to be replenished with oxygen, oceans provide life-sustaining circulation to the planet. Propelled mainly by prevailing winds and differences in water density, which changes with the temperature and salinity of the seawater, ocean currents are critical in cooling, warming, and watering the planet's terrestrial surfaces—and in transferring heat from the Equator to the Poles. Oceans are important sinks, or absorption centers, for carbon dioxide, and take up about a third of human-generated CO2.
How to Fight Climate Change
A single molecule of CFC-12 can hold nearly 11,000 times the heat of carbon dioxide, making it an extraordinarily potent greenhouse gas. CFCs hold the same heat as the carbon dioxide emissions from burning 16 million gallons of gasoline. Last year, a coalition of scientists and policy experts at the nonprofit Drawdown ranked the top one hundred climate change solutions by level of impact. No one guessed that refrigerant management, which includes CFCs and two other classes of chemicals known as HCFCs and HFCs, would top the list. But it did. The Drawdown study estimated that properly disposing of old refrigerants, rather than letting them leak into the air, would be equivalent to preventing nearly 90 gigatons of carbon dioxide from reaching the atmosphere. That’s more than 17 years of U.S. CO2 emissions.
So the science is clear: cleaning up the world’s legacy CFCs would help prevent additional greenhouse gases from further changing the climate. Yet actually doing this, particularly in developing countries, is still being worked out, thanks to financial and logistical challenges.
Human activities are causing climate change and polluting the environment to such a degree that the future looks bleak indeed. However, it’s vital to remember that humans can turn it around if they work together and plan for a better future. Rather than feeling pessimistic and helpless, there are simple things that each person can do that can help. Collectively, those small actions make a significant impact as our society realizes the importance and necessity of going green.
Recycling: It’s not just for plastics
Most people with an interest in going green are actively recycling. In addition to recycling the usual items like paper, plastic, and glass, we can recycle things like used motor oil, used batteries, used tires, and even appliances, electronics, light bulbs, and furniture. The best part is it can be as simple as making a purchase at a store that offers a recycling service. For appliances, you can try calling local small appliance repair shops. If they aren’t interested in obtaining the items for parts themselves, then they will likely know who will.
Simple ways to conserve water
Trinidadians waste water even when we do have it. Plus there are the leaking road pipes and more. But consider you can save 80 gallons of water each week, just by turning off the water while you brush your teeth! Pretty remarkable, right? And it couldn’t be simpler.
Another relatively simple way to conserve water is simply to repair leaky plumbing like toilets, faucets, and sinks. Making repairs to those items can seem daunting, but may be much simpler than you think, and will prevent big expensive home repairs in the future.
Reduce chemical use
Consumers have much more power than they give themselves credit for. We can all influence what corporations do by choosing to buy products that are better for the environment. If you have the option, choose biodegradable, natural products. By doing so, it keeps some of the harsh and toxic chemicals from entering water supplies.
Other simple ideas for going green:
Ride in a carpool to work
Ride your bike if possible
Take public transportation
Buy a hybrid or electric car
Slow down to save on gas
Compost your table scraps
Grow your own food
Buy from your local farmers market
Landscape with drought-resistant native plants
Choose plants that help native wildlife
I hope that we all can make a great effort to change our environment and therefore save the earth, our planet. We take our planet for granted but we need to be more aware that it is a living thing, with the water courses are its arteries and vegetation are its nerve endings, animals and people, the Planet's cells. This is my view of the environmental and the planet. We need to love it, take care of it and it will take care of us.
National Geographic: The big Thaw by Daniel Glick
If the polar ice caps melted, how much would the oceans rise by Marshall Brain
One overlooked way to fight climate change? Dispose of old CFCs by Juli Berwald
Simple ways everyone can move toward a greener, more prosperous future today by Green and Growing