Information for consumers about how their spending habits affect human rights, animal rights and welfare, and the environment.
2013 Nov. 23 update: Vegan Living. Recipes and nutrition.
Fair Trade News: Fair World Project works to protect the strength and integrity of the term fair trade.
2013 Nov. 22: Wind Energy vs. Avian Wildlife
How do you resolve the conflict of windmills producing green energy but killing birds that can't see the spinning blades? The U.S. government won a million dollar lawsuit against Duke Energy Company under the Migratory Bird Treaty Act for deaths of birds at wind farms in Wyoming.
The most effective measure is prevention--avoiding siting wind farms in areas where birds are likely to run into them. "Once a wind farm is built, there is little a company can do to stop the deaths. Some firms have tried using radar to detect birds and to shut down the turbines when they get too close. Others have used human spotters to warn when birds are flying too close to the blades. Another tactic has been to remove vegetation to reduce the prey the birds like to eat."
2013 Nov. 15: Ivory and Wildlife
U.S. Secretary of State John Kerry, reporting for Reader Supported News, says "the Department of the Interior is destroying the United States' entire stock of confiscated contraband ivory...." Other countries have also destroyed their ivory. Demand for other wildlife parts is accelerating, and with it the profitability of poaching, causing many animal populations to move toward extinction. "Consumers can and must be partners with governments in disrupting the market incentives for traffickers", says Kerry.
2013 update: In an effort to simplify things, additional news has been moved to In the News.
Special Report: Torture
There is hope! Please see the post on a January 2012 anti-torture resolution by the city of Chicago, and how other municipalities can do the same. If you do not see it at first, refresh the page by clicking the refresh button on your browser bar or pressing the f5 key.
Special Report: Fair Trade
2013 update summarizes changes in standards and controversy over increasing availability of products with the certification by making it easier to get certified vs. maintaining more rigorous standards. Fair World Project offers suggestions for resolving the conflict by making product labels more transparent about percentage of ingredients that are certified.
Special Report: Modern-Day Slavery
2012 Oct. 3: good news!Green America reports that Hershey Co. "will be certifying 100 percent of its cocoa by 2020 and urged the chocolate giant to go 100 percent Fair Trade with incremental benchmarks."
2012 Oct. 5: more good news! Chipotle signed the Fair Food Agreement with the Coalition of Immokalee Workers. Trader Joe's signed back in February 2012.