Sustainable Living is a very broad concept…here at Wild Banksia, we consider the heart of our sustainable philosophy is respect for all life on Earth through awareness, compassion, reducing the dependency on chemicals in our lives and realigning with our natural world.
- Living more productive lives by creating more, consuming less and lowering levels of waste produced;
- Living healthily and more holistically;
- Choosing to support activities that can be perpetually maintained such as renewable harvesting of natural resources.
- Acknowledging the basic need to feel productive and purposeful, not just at menial tasks but at the task that we each have been gifted as part of our “miracle of life” contract- YES even YOU have something special you are bringing to the world whether you are aware of it or not- sustainability also pertains to your ability to maintain levels of passion, excitement and enthusiasm FOR the TERM of your natural life!! 🙂
- Our ability to feel fulfilled by contribution to our local community (on some level) whether it be by the impact of our actions or the fact we feel accepted, understood and engaged with other members of the wider community.
- Reducing our carbon footprint by lowering our dependency on non-renewable forms of energy;
- An ongoing commitment to respecting and understanding the interconnectedness of Life.
None of these elements in isolation define sustainable living, but instead contribute to the whole BIG picture! We believe it is certainly a worthwhile pursuit to spend a lifetime trying to get right if necessary! 🙂
ORGANIC & BIO-DYNAMIC PHILOSOPHY
Every aspect of life on Earth is interconnected and totally interdependent. By exploiting and mistreating our Earth, whether it be it’s variety of resources, plants or animals, we are infact just mistreating ourselves. Organic principles therefore, strive for ways in which to create productive, but sustainable land use by emulating natural, biological systems; avoiding synthetic inputs such as pesticides or artificial fertilisers; and seeks to maintain only sustainable levels of natural resource usage/harvest.
Sustainable living is intricately connected to living as organically as we can. Chemicals are damaging our environment, their run-off poison our underground and surface water supplies, pollute our soils and atmosphere and damages the health of all species on this planet. Our bodies ARE suprisingly resilient, as is our Earth, but cracks in the armour of both are beginning….
15% of the human population are experiencing these “tell-tale signs” a little earlier than some – they are the one’s who show signs of acute chemical sensitivities, or have allergic reactions and/or are simply reactive to certain substances.
However, ALL of us are likely to suffer some form of degenerative, chronic or terminal condition longer term, probably as a result or side effect, of a build up of these toxic substances in our bodies. But only the 15% will have the physical warning signs short term that their body is being harmed towards that end! So perhaps count yourself lucky infact, if you are one of those sensitives!!
To explore and find out more about Organic Farming Practices please click on those words and you will be taken to the Biological Farmers Association Guide to What is Organic.
There is certainly solid basis for the argument that Organic farming is really the only sustainable way forward.
DID YOU KNOW that of all the toxic residues found in food consumed, less than 10% comes directly from consumption of fruit, vegetables and grains- over 90% comes from animal products! A very good reason to try to source Certified Organic meat, eggs and dairy products whenever you can, or cut back a little on your consumption levels. It is also wise to choose to shop for products that are not previously packaged in plastic packaging or containers as you can refer to below.
These chemical residues come from many sources, including the chemically farmed crops, grasses and grains the animals firstly consume, which accumulate as residual toxins in their tissues, bodily organs and bi-products. Secondly, more chemicals are added to the concoction as insecticides applied either directly on animals’ skin, or given orally to control pests and parasites. Thirdly, antibiotics and various medicinal drugs injected or orally administered to induce apparent good health or for rapid growth inducement. After slaughter, the meat is often doused with artificial colourant and preservative so it looks fresher and lasts longer. Last but not least, plastic packaging also adds to the chemical contamination levels of the meat by way of leaching monomers, phthalates and other potentially toxic substances into foodstuffs. The FDA is constantly reassessing what packaging is considered safe, as further research is slowly revealing the causal factors which tend to liberate these substances into the food it protects.
So the reality is even when we consume a diet full of healthy fresh produce, we must ask ourselves what are we really consuming?? Making Two choices can mean the world to our health….
1/ Buy Certified Organic wherever possible; and
2/ Be mindful of the country it has been grown in. Most of the developed countries have more stringent standards governing pesticide usage whereas third world countries often still use chemicals that have been banned from use for decades in the U.S.A, Australia or Europe.
A personal account of this is found in the story shared in a 2004 edition of the New Internationalist magazine “Banana Benders”, of Nicaraguan banana plantation worker, Maria Isaidris Cruz Salgado, who, for 20 years had suffered from scabs affecting her whole body. When she got pregnant, she swelled up so badly that the foetus- which was found to have no bone structure-had to be cut out. Thousands of other workers also claimed to be suffering from exposure to pesticides containing the chemical agent Dibromochloropropane (DBCP)- which was banned from use in the USA in 1979!!
The residual nature of pesticides was also highlighted in a report compiled by the Pesticide Action Network North America (PANNA). Within the report they analysed pesticide related data collected by the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) on levels of chemicals in 9,282 people nationwide. The CDC found pesticides in 100% of the people who had both blood and urine tested. The average person in this group carried a toxic cocktail of 13 of the 23 pesticides analysed.
Apart from the obvious benefit of avoiding direct consumption of chemicals by buying Organic products, the story above does express the common plight that farm workers right across the globe share. Thousands of farm workers are being exposed to dangerous carcinogens in the form of insecticides, pesticides and fungicides on a regular basis. Infact, in the US alone, Government figures suggest as many as 90,000 farm workers a year suffer from pesticide poisoning of some type. The average life expectancy of a farm worker is just 49 years old!
So buying organic products and aspiring to as high a level of organic lifestyle as we can afford or have the time to, has such far reaching implications than just our own health- it is showing consideration for every other person on the planet AND Mother Earth as well. This is the epitomy of sustainable living.