Chelsea Green Publishing

Chelsea Green Blog

World Population Day

World Population Day on July 11th represents not only a time to consider the unprecedented impact that human beings are having on the planet, but also an opportunity to consider the simple and proven solutions that help to mitigate this impact. Since its inception in the 1960’s, voluntary international family planning programs have been instrumental in cutting the global fertility rate in half, from about six children per woman to the current rate of just under three. Access to reproductive health services, including family planning and education, is critical to reducing the maternal and infant mortality rate, increasing women’s and girl’s literacy rates and education levels, and improving the economic prospects for millions of families around the globe. In turn, these improvements result in reduced pressures on wildlife and ecosystems, a cleaner environment, and a more secure world. Voluntary family planning is an area of foreign aid that has produced rapid results for people and the planet. Simply stated, voluntary family planning is a highly successful and effective method to improve the health and well-being of women, children, families, communities, and nations, as well as the millions of plant and wildlife species with which we share this planet. This is why it is more important than ever that the U.S. meet its commitments to increase funding for family planning and related foreign aid and support the UN Millennium Development Goals (MDGs). 2005 marks five years since the U.S. and 188 other countries established the MDGs, a groundbreaking framework of quantitative targets and integrated approaches for achieving poverty reduction and improvements in health, education, gender equality, the environment and other aspects of human welfare by 2015. When the UN General Assembly meets in September to assess what more needs to be done to help countries meet the goals, U.S. citizens should stand up and be counted among the many citizen campaigns that are happening worldwide to hold governments accountable to meeting these goals. We know that voluntary family planning is an effective way not only to reduce human pressures on the natural world, but also to improve human well-being. So it just makes good sense for governments to put their funding into programs that we know will address several of the MDGs – from poverty to health to environmental sustainability – all at once. Contact your congressperson and ask him/her to support increased funding for voluntary family planning as a wise investment in people and the planet. *(This submission is part of a National Wildlife Federation campaign, to learn more and help increase awareness visit www.nwf.org.)


Why Modern Wheat Is Making Us Sick

Why is modern wheat making us sick?  That’s the question posed by author Eli Rogosa in her new book Restoring Heritage Grains.Wheat is the most widely grown crop on our planet, yet industrial breeders have transformed this ancient staff of life into a commodity of yield and profit—witness the increase in gluten intolerance and ‘wheat […] Read More

A Dictionary to Survive the Future

When British economist David Fleming died unexpectedly in 2010, he left behind his great unpublished work, a masterpiece more than thirty years in the making—an intellectually evocative and inspiring dictionary, Lean Logic: A Dictionary for the Future and How to Survive It. In it, Fleming examined the consequences of an economy that destroys the very foundations—ecological, […] Read More

Michael Ableman’s 15-Point Urban Food Manifesto

What if farms and food production were integrated into every aspect of urban living—from special assessments to create new farms and food businesses to teaching people how to grow fruits and vegetables so farmers can focus on staple crops.That’s the crux of Michael Ableman’s Urban Food Manifesto, which has been ten years in the making […] Read More

Q&A with Michael Ableman: How Urban Farming Can Improve Society

Street Farm is the inspirational account of residents in the notorious Low Track in Vancouver, British Columbia who joined together to create an urban farm as a means of addressing the chronic problems in their neighborhood.Street Farm is a story of recovery, of land and food, of people, and of the power of farming and nourishing […] Read More

Overshoot, Collapse, and Creating a Better Future

In 2016, Earth Overshoot Day happened on August 8—the day when we’ve exhausted the planet’s resources for the year, and are essentially borrowing from future years to maintain our existence today.Perhaps you celebrated this day with a counter-solution: a vegetarian meal, telecommuted, or turned off the air conditioning. There’s a lot more you could be […] Read More
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