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-   -   December 9th Seoul, U.N. International Mountain Day Ceremony (http://www.koreaontherocks.com/forums/showthread.php?t=1213)

shanja 11-20-2007 11:27 PM

December 9th Seoul, U.N. International Mountain Day Ceremony
 
OK folks here is the good oil (beta) on what we are all hoping will be the start of a ever bigger and better annual event. I didn't pen this piece, Hypoxic (Shawn) authored it, but take the time to read it and follow the links both to the U.N.'s site and also to KML's site. Like KOTR they are true mountain lovers, and we ought do more to work with them. OK enough preaching, all our best to you all.
The time is coming yet again - December 11, the United Nations International Mountain Day.
Established after the UN designated 2002 as the International Year of the Mountain, UNIMD is a day to mark the ecological, cultural, and emotional importance that mountains hold for us. Along with Earth Day (April 22), this is one of the most important days on the KML's calendar. (*Earth Day is also the anniversary of the founding of the KML).

This year's UNIMD theme is Facing Change: Climate Change in Mountain Areas.

This year, the KML will be hosting an event to honour UNIMD on Sunday, December 9, in the Gangbuk District of Seoul. In the south-eastern foot hills of Samgaksan (Bukhansan), the event will be attended by some of the most active and vibrant figures of Korea's mountain world. Speaking at the event will be:

- Cho - - : organizer for the Samgaksan Campaign
- David A. Mason: Cultural & Tourism professor, Kyunghee Univeristy; expert on Korea's mountain worship folk traditions
- Jake Preston: mountaineer; representative of Korea on the Rocks
- Rayn Roberts: poet; expert on the Buddhist traditions of Korea's mountains
- Roger Shepherd: trekker; cheif field researcher of the Baekdu Daegan Expedition Project
- Shawn James Morrissey: Korean Mountaineering League president

These speakers, in their personal expertise, will bring various different personalities and opinions to the event, but will all be speaking under a single ideal: we must protect our mountains. From ecology to culture to recreation and more, this event promises to be a time of fellowship and peace highlighted by knowledge and compassion for the prosperity of Korea's highlands.

There will also be a tour of nearby Buddhist temple, Doseonsa, a traditional shamanic mountain-spirit worship ceremony, and a traditional Korean dinner.

Everyone is invited, but space is limited. If you're interested in joining us for this event to mark the United Nations International Mountain Day, please contact us by e-mail. If you're unable to join us, we encourage you to mark the day in your own way: go for a hike or a climb, pick up some litter from a busy trail, raise a toast to the mountains, spread awareness. For more infomation visit UNIMD website here. The UNIMD Commitee has informed us that the site will be updated in the coming days.

Let's work together to keep days such as this in the public eye so the importance of conservation itself remains fresh in the collective mind of those who can make a difference.

You can point people to the KML site too if you like.
Talk soon.

- Shawn
__________________
Life is brought down to the basics: if you are warm, regular, healthy, not thirsty or hungry, then you are not on a mountain. . . . Climbing at altitude is like hitting your head against a brick wall - it's great when you stop.
- Chris Darwin

skinsk 11-21-2007 12:11 AM

Shawn, (Jake!) sounds great! I'd love to go and meet y'all (well, I meet Jake all the time. . . but the other folks)! One Caveat-- I've accepted a "Kimjang" invite from my Korean Teacher "sometime in Dec" at her mother-in-laws-- I think I'm just going for day but I've committed and I actually really want to go, so hopefully it won't be the 9th! Anyway, with that possible exception, count me in!

Hypoxic 11-21-2007 12:17 AM

Okay, Skinsk, we'll pen you in.

I should point out that Mr Cho, mentioned in the write up 'Cho --', the cheif advisor to Gangbuk District mayor Kim Hyung-poong. I've met with Mr Cho on many occasions and to my embarressment cannot recall his full name...
I'll rectify that mistake there ('Cho --') ASAP. Sorry about that.

Links to the UNIMD site are on the KML site (the link to which is on the bottom of all KOTR pages).

lkiehn 11-21-2007 09:01 AM

Sign me up!
 
I'm planning on hitting up O2 World on Saturday the 8th, and this sounds like a great way to spend Sunday! How much does the event cost, or is it free of charge?

Lindsey Kiehn

Hypoxic 11-21-2007 11:31 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by lkiehn
I'm planning on hitting up O2 World on Saturday the 8th, and this sounds like a great way to spend Sunday! How much does the event cost, or is it free of charge?

Lindsey Kiehn


Hi Lindsey,

It'll be great to have you. The only cost will be your dinner - which promises to be quite nice (a traditional mountain feast) - but it will be a huge spread so it may be consider by some as rather pricey (20,000 won). The KML is working on getting that cost down. I'll keep you posted.

mil-mil 11-21-2007 12:17 PM

i am in the same boat with lindsey O2 world sat and would love to go to this event on sunday.

mil-mil 11-21-2007 12:18 PM

Speaking of which has anyone found out anymore information on our little O2 world ice intro day thing?

skinsk 11-21-2007 12:32 PM

I'd be up for 02 (unless this is my Kimjang day) and would be willing to demo what I know about ice climbing (mostly technique, but that's about all one could do in 02 anyway). . . though if there's ice nearby at that time (Surak?) and we can get enough tools, that might be better. Problem with a Saturday at 02 is its limited space. I believe they have lessons there at this time, so actually getting on any of the routes (not neccessary for a demo, but something everyone would want to try, I'd guess) might not be feasable. And I don't know how much I want to pay to sit or stand around the giant ice box! I wonder if people would be willing to pool tools and maybe go in shifts-- save on rentals and get in more practice. Of course, if there's a set time we could reserve it, all the better.

Hypoxic 11-21-2007 02:19 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mil-mil
i am in the same boat with lindsey O2 world sat and would love to go to this event on sunday.


Okay, cool. I'll mark you down.

Please remember, everyone, that as this is the first year that we're organizing this event, it's rather exclusive regarding space - we're limited. So, please verify with certainty by at least a week before the event whether you can make it or not. That way, if there's anyone who really wants to go and can 100% make it, they won't miss out.

I wish everyone could be there! In fact, I spoke to Mr Cho (I got his full name: Cho Young-chang) this morning and he's already said that Gangbuk-Gu Jung is willing to support us again next year and establish a bigger venue. So, for this year, we're humble - next year, humble but in a bigger place.:becky:

An update:

We've secured another speaker. Ms Shin Min-kyoung, one of the cheif organizers of the Samgaksan International Mountain Festival will attend and give a talk regarding the Festival. She's a really nice lady and it should be nice to hear what is planned for next year's Festival. This year's Festival was not too bad, but there simply wasn't enough 'international' in that international festival.

Hypoxic 11-25-2007 08:17 PM

Just a bump to keep the knowledge of the day fresh in everyone's minds! It promises to be a very informative, inspiring, relaxed event.

We're trying to secure a bigger venue to suit more numbers, so let us know if you're keen. Again, promises to be a good time.

shanja 11-27-2007 10:14 PM

Hey ho fellow dudes and dudettes all, I do believe that we will have an ice intro day at O2, but be aware the rock gym there is also pretty damned nice! Slab and crack practice routes, well worth checking out, as well as all the usual gymnastic plastic pulling stuff. Pebble wrestlers you know the boulderers playground is nearby too, so I don't mean to cut you out in any way shape or form at all. Rumour has it, a small get together might transpire Sat night at a Seoul KOTRers home...
I also believe we HAVE secured a bigger hall at the same venue (right Shawn?) so as the Koreans say "다다익산/ the more the merrier".
As Shawn has said it is a 1st time to try this evcent in Korea, so don't come expecting an equivalent of the Olympics Opening Ceremony, but rather a warm, friendly gathering of like minded people. We want it to grow every-year, so input afterwards too would be appreciated. The key point though is let's keep our highlands sacred and enjoy them in such a way that generations to come will say of us:
"Yeah this is sweet, these hills rock! And all because those dudes ands dudettes back in the early 21st century gave a toss. Cool."

mil-mil 11-27-2007 11:36 PM

well put jake. i most say you have been getting more poetic with your posting latley

Hypoxic 11-28-2007 10:10 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shanja
Hey ho fellow dudes and dudettes all, I do believe that we will have an ice intro day at O2, but be aware the rock gym there is also pretty damned nice! Slab and crack practice routes, well worth checking out, as well as all the usual gymnastic plastic pulling stuff. Pebble wrestlers you know the boulderers playground is nearby too, so I don't mean to cut you out in any way shape or form at all. Rumour has it, a small get together might transpire Sat night at a Seoul KOTRers home...
I also believe we HAVE secured a bigger hall at the same venue (right Shawn?) so as the Koreans say "다다익산/ the more the merrier".
As Shawn has said it is a 1st time to try this evcent in Korea, so don't come expecting an equivalent of the Olympics Opening Ceremony, but rather a warm, friendly gathering of like minded people. We want it to grow every-year, so input afterwards too would be appreciated. The key point though is let's keep our highlands sacred and enjoy them in such a way that generations to come will say of us:
"Yeah this is sweet, these hills rock! And all because those dudes ands dudettes back in the early 21st century gave a toss. Cool."


We have not yet secured a bigger room at the same venue. It's still in the works. However, we still have space left for the original room - a lovely little joga-jip, not far from Doseonsa.

So, come one, come all! We want as many people as possible to come, and remember, we who are organizing it are getting no benefit in any way from having more people. We're all volunteers for the spirit of conservation, culture, recreation, and enviro-friendly tourism. Like Jake said, it's a warm group of like-minded sentients, trying to get a grip on it all... and have a few beers while we're at it.

Hypoxic 12-05-2007 11:02 PM

Just a reminder for this Sunday.

I hope as many of you as possible can make it, to join us in fellowship and peace for our montane teachers. Since so many of you will be hanging out on Saturday at O2, please joins us Sunday for the event.

Hope to see everyone there!

How's the speech comin', Jake? ;)

mil-mil 12-06-2007 08:59 AM

sorry to be doing this but please remove my name off of the list. It's Kates last weekend here and we are looking at taking her skiing for the first time.

climbergrrl 12-06-2007 04:20 PM

hi y'all!

i truly pored over all the posts, so if the time is posted, i'll just feel like an idjut, but what time does this event start?

if it's in the evening, puh-leaz count me in!

(just wonderin' 'cuz i'm hopin' to do some granite pullin' in the afternoon before i go...:) )

cheers!
dee

shanja 12-06-2007 05:35 PM

Heidi mate here is what I know (Shawn can you edit this or update if anything is changed? You beauty!):

We have our venue, a small 초가집 near the lower eastern flanks of Samgaksan (Bukhansan NP). We will be near a significant temple, Doseonsa, so Professor Mason will do a tour there. After that we will walk down to the jo-ga jip and perform a traditional mountain worship ceremony at the outside shrine they have there. Anyone wanting to actually participate can certainly do so, otherwise observation is cool. We will then go inside and settle down for our speeches. We have the place all to our own for four hours so we can take our time with the speeches. Food will be served as well, traditional stuff. Booze, too. It seems it will break down like this:
Sunday, December 9
1:00 - 2:30: Doseonsa tour
2:30 - 2:40: walk to the jo-ga jip
2:40 - 3:20: mountain worship ceremony
3:25 - 7:00: speeches, food, booze, good conversations, mountain respect, fellowship, peace, good times.

I hope you can make it mate, as I'm getting a tad nervous about speaking in public in front of so many people...I'm just a shy and smelly climber! Friendly faces welcome!

Hypoxic 12-07-2007 12:53 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by mil-mil
sorry to be doing this but please remove my name off of the list. It's Kates last weekend here and we are looking at taking her skiing for the first time.


Ah, that's too bad, man. I was looking forward to meeting you and having you join us. Next year, then. :)

Hypoxic 12-07-2007 01:01 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by climbergrrl
hi y'all!

i truly pored over all the posts, so if the time is posted, i'll just feel like an idjut, but what time does this event start?

if it's in the evening, puh-leaz count me in!

(just wonderin' 'cuz i'm hopin' to do some granite pullin' in the afternoon before i go...:) )

cheers!
dee


Well, as Jake pointed out, the tour itself starts at 1:00. We'd really like for you to join us, Heidi. Could I appeal to you and see if you could change your mind and get on some granite next weekend...?:o
I really think everyone here would enjoy the day. Jake is all set to blow us all away with his poetically tinged prowess of prose.:becky:

We'd really love for you to be there, Heidi.:)

Hypoxic 12-07-2007 01:11 AM

Latest Update for UNIMD
 
Well, gang, here's the latest update as of this afternoon.

No real changes to what Jake already just posted other than the venue. We've secured a different place instead of the joga-jip. It's a mountaineering academy not far from the joga-jip. It's a little larger than the joga-jip, not as rustic, but the food will be smaller. It doesn't have a sanshin shrine like the joga-jip, but never fear! The sanshin worship ceremony will be held at the sanshin-gak (mountain spirit shrine) at Doseonsa. This is actually a little more appropriate as the shrine at the joga-jip doesn't actually have any images of sanshin and isn't in a particularly auspicious place. Remember, we're not out to challenge anyone's religious views, this is simply a tradtional treatment of the mountains during such events. No one has to actually participate in the ceremony. It's all good. :) Another positive point of using the academy is the media coverage we'll receive from Mountain World Magazine, an editor of which has some connection with the academy.*
Also, the food at the new place will be cheaper - always a bonus.

A final note, for anyone joining us who is not too sure how to get to Doseonsa (where the day will begin), we will have a greeter at Suyu Station (line 4) ready to meet everyone at gate 8. The greeter is Ms Shin Min-kyoung, a very nice lady, fluent in English and a good speaker. If you wish to go this way, please be at Suyu Station, gate 8 by 12:30. Ms Shin will leave the station for Doseonsa at 12:40. Let me know if this is what you will do and I will pass Ms Shin's cell number on to you.

Time is winding down. I really hope you all can join us to pay respects and to help raise awareness to the mountains that give us all so much.

*We've secured other media as well, none of which will be in attendance unfortunately (other than the mag). I did an interview today for the Joong An Ilbo about the UNIMD. Gave KOTR a shameless plug.;)

Hypoxic 12-09-2007 12:55 AM

We're all set for the Day of Reckoning.

With warm regards, I hope you all can make it out.

Here's my cell if needed: 010 5595 6099

Hypoxic 12-11-2007 02:19 PM

Well, the seminar is all over and done, and it went very well. The tour was wonderful, all of the speeches were insightful and sincere, and the food was delicious - so was the dongdongju. We're looking forward to next year.

Thanks to everyone who came out to support the seminar. Especially, thanks to Jake for agreeing to join us as a speaker and who, in my opinion, delivered the best speech. Thanks a lot, my friend.

Check out the KML site for a brief breakdown and a photo from the seminar.

And today is the day.

Happy International Mountain Day everyone!

skinsk 12-11-2007 03:45 PM

Shawn, it was nice to finally meet you, and interesting to hear from the very varied panel! I think I am inspired to clean up an oil spill this weekend! Peace and all, and thanks for giving vegetarianism (well, once a week veganism) a plug! Peace and love and all to you:hippie:

shanja 12-12-2007 12:24 AM

Well I think that my speech was probably the most nervous and rambling, but thanks all the same. My sincere thanks go out to the folks who attended. Next years program should be much bigger and may even include a celebrity speaker. The main points we need to keep in mind are that with GLOBAL WARMING being accepted even by GW Bush and co (finally), it is imperative we arew proactive in turning around the damage done on our beloved environment, as Shawn said, BOTH when we are in the hills and out of them.
Recycle.
Take public transport, or walk/ cycle/ skate etc
Sign petitions against overpackaging and unsustainable practices.
Pack it in, pack it out.
Join a KML/ KOTR clean-up event. (Just pick up extra trash at a crag!)
Avoid damaging the environment when we climb/ hike/ ski/ raft/ run/ trek etc
Spread the message.

If you've watched CNN lately (yeah I know I know it's the Devils channel blah, blah, blah BUT) you might have seen how the glaciers in South America are in full scale retreat, leading to appalling suffering, both human and ecological. The NZ glaciers are the same. Original alpine routes done a mere 50 years ago are know scrambles over morraine and scree! The Hims are being choked and melted by an entrapment of smog that blocks against them on the southern side from the sub continent, and well even non-climbing areas like southern USA are getting whacked by severe weather changes. Australia hasd had the worst drought (across 85% of it) EVER recorded!
If you love climbing, playing, or just being in the mountains NOW is your last shot at making sure they will still be there for you and others to come.
Sorry to sound gloomy, but the reality is we can all make a difference if we pull our fingers out and fight for what we know is beautiful and right.
Take care and climb safe, high and clean.

Hypoxic 12-12-2007 11:19 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by skinsk
Shawn, it was nice to finally meet you, and interesting to hear from the very varied panel! I think I am inspired to clean up an oil spill this weekend! Peace and all, and thanks for giving vegetarianism (well, once a week veganism) a plug! Peace and love and all to you:hippie:


It was great to finally meet you as well, Sonia. Regarding vegetarianism and its relation to environmentalism, full on vegetarianism is rather hard for most people, but at least (at least) one day a week of not comsuming any animal-based products can help to reduce stress and impact caused by our unsustainable farming practices. Regarding the cruelty issue, free range/organic animal farming is a good alternative for environmentalists, as the animals are feed properly, not given hormones, and have range. These farms also produce far less stress upon the ecology and are ultimately a far more sustainable practice than our other archaic methods. I eat meat maybe twice or thrice a month, always locally farmed free ranged/organically produced unmodified meat (99% of the time chicken). I also only eat locally produced organically obtained eggs from free ranged chickens. When I say locally, I'm talking a 20 minute drive to the farm from my house. It's more expensive, but its worth it, and if we can educate on the necessity and ultimate benefits of such farming, we can entice more people to support these farming practices and then ultimately lower the prices. When I eat cheese, its organic and contains no junket (cow stomach lining), but is not locally produced (impossible to find here).

Limit impact.

Regarding the terrible oil spill, I'm currently looking into the situation more deeply, doing some research and I may also be heading down this weekend to help with cleaning. The KML will begin following the situation and will encourage members and those who visit our site to help out in some way.
It looks like it will take upwards to two months to get everything cleaned up, though the long term environmental damage has likely already begun to set in. :( :mad:

Stop using oil! That's one thing I forgot to mention in my lecture - reduce your dependance on plastics - plastic materials require and contain oil.

Let's work harder, friends, to keep the spirit of Sunday's seminar vibrant everyday. :)

Hypoxic 12-12-2007 11:21 AM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shanja
Well I think that my speech was probably the most nervous and rambling, but thanks all the same. My sincere thanks go out to the folks who attended. Next years program should be much bigger and may even include a celebrity speaker. The main points we need to keep in mind are that with GLOBAL WARMING being accepted even by GW Bush and co (finally), it is imperative we arew proactive in turning around the damage done on our beloved environment, as Shawn said, BOTH when we are in the hills and out of them.
Recycle.
Take public transport, or walk/ cycle/ skate etc
Sign petitions against overpackaging and unsustainable practices.
Pack it in, pack it out.
Join a KML/ KOTR clean-up event. (Just pick up extra trash at a crag!)
Avoid damaging the environment when we climb/ hike/ ski/ raft/ run/ trek etc
Spread the message.

If you've watched CNN lately (yeah I know I know it's the Devils channel blah, blah, blah BUT) you might have seen how the glaciers in South America are in full scale retreat, leading to appalling suffering, both human and ecological. The NZ glaciers are the same. Original alpine routes done a mere 50 years ago are know scrambles over morraine and scree! The Hims are being choked and melted by an entrapment of smog that blocks against them on the southern side from the sub continent, and well even non-climbing areas like southern USA are getting whacked by severe weather changes. Australia hasd had the worst drought (across 85% of it) EVER recorded!
If you love climbing, playing, or just being in the mountains NOW is your last shot at making sure they will still be there for you and others to come.
Sorry to sound gloomy, but the reality is we can all make a difference if we pull our fingers out and fight for what we know is beautiful and right.
Take care and climb safe, high and clean.


We need to have it in our minds that Mountain Day is everyday. Shall we try to get something going for Earth Day?

shanja 12-12-2007 01:13 PM

It's great to see so many people from both KOTR and KML already preparing to help out with the oil spill. That is exactly the kind of attitude we need and love to see. Thanks everyone!
I'd just like to point out that although many agricultural practices of industrialized capitalist economies are bad for the environment, and not sustainable...we need to be careful in proposing alternatives also. Sorry to say but vegetarianism isn't ipso facto better for the environment. I know some of you are vegetarian and feel strongly about it, but many more are not. Here's some points to consider, but please don't take it the wrong way. I 100% agree many animal based industries are cruel, unsustainable or just unnecessary:
Crop farming (the main source of vegetarians diet) also causes massive deforestation and environmental degradation - the jungles of Asia are being cleared (and have been for centuries) for the planting of rice, soy-bean, millet, corn and palm trees (for oil, milk etc). The Aztec civilataions denuded many hills also in maize farming, and it was the irrigation and crop farming of Australias Murray Darling Basin that caused it to become a salty wastelend.
If everyone on the planet were a vegetarian we would need to plow up and plant 90% of the Earths land-mass in order to maintain a 2000 calorie/ person diet. At present, the idea of global vegetarianism is not sustainable either...maybe science will find a way to make super crops with super yields (I worked in CSIRO's Plant Genetics Division, and my major is Genetics) but then you are talking GMO's. Sure some cattle/ sheep/ pig farming practices are also resulting in deforestation and so on. I agree 100% that we need to stop this, and now. But vegetarianism isn't really the solution.
Shawn is right on about our dependence on oils and fossil fuels. I doubt anyone disagrees with the need to leave this oil/ fossil fuel era in the past. But animal products are (or can be) renewable. The alternative to leather is plastics. Plastics are made by petro-chemical factories from oil and fossil fuel derivatives. Sorry but you either use natural products (and accept that this includes animal products) or you build chemical plants and use synthetics. Instead of taking a false moral high-ground we should all be working against cruel animal farming practices and allfarming (or other industry) practices that are clearly unsustainable.
This is not meant as an anti-vegetarian rant...I will continue to practice a vegetarian diet 2-4 times a week myself. But let's not fool ourselves and engender factionalisms between people who love the environment. Both vegetarian and omnivorous humans can work together to find ways to better manage our resources. Both diets/ lifestyles can be good or bad for the world, and both can benefit from co-operative involvement and acceptance.

skinsk 12-12-2007 01:52 PM

Meat eaters shouldn't take it personally, but in terms of sustainability, grains and vegetables take way less land, do less damage to the land, pollute land and water sources less (animals also require feed grains such as alfalfa or corn) . . . even the beef industry isn't putting out studies otherwise. . . I've never heard anyone argue that meat is more sustainable and takes up less land/resources, and a simple search yielded no fruit, so to speak. As Shawn points out, though, there are so many things to do. . . if you're not ready or able to give up meat . . . almost every action we make has an impact! Being conscious and aware of our consumption is the best way to start. But we can be hard on ourselves and others when we fall short, either. It's not a contest, and everyone works to a level they are comfortable with, and then my game is: trying to up myself! I am guilty of having a car. . . a computer. . . using batteries. . . buying imported goods. . . and travelling a lot! Travelling is not sustainable. . . are bolts good for the environment?! Very debatable, but I clip them.

Shawn, I agree that the animal raising and farming practices you mention are also important (if not moreso from an environmental standpoint) and thus my website links to sources of organic, free-range, etc foods, so from whatever place an individual is coming from . . . from "so vegetarian he only ate of fallen fruit/ and wore rope sandals" to "I eat only meat" . . . people can find fresh, quality and sustainable foods (though the latter are less likely to go to www.vegetariankorea.org!). I totally hope you let me know of any links/shopping sites etc you may have found. . . and while Korea's dairy industry (esp in terms of cheese) is in it's infancy, it's offering organic milk now! The sustainability/organic/vegetarian movement in Korea has grown in leaps and bounds over the past 10 years (next month will be 10 years since I first came to Korea!!:eek8: ) . . .the more support we give to what's on offer, the more likely new things will be added!

shanja 12-12-2007 02:48 PM

Well I don't see how clearing a forest and ripping up the soil for a crop hurts it less than having a cow graze there (and manuring the soil. Crops require fertalizer - either natural (where does that largely come from? Cows etc on farms etc) or synthetic (from factories). To produce the same amount of calories for food, crops require upwards of 5-10 times the land under culitivation regular pasture grazing requires. Intensive grazing degrades he land and is bad. Agreed. But careful grazing and understocking can be done on smaller amounts of land for more calorie yields. Most commercial crops are also mono-cultures which is devastating for ecosystems.
This shouldn't be a case of meat-eaters versus vegetarians. As I said I am an omnivore, and that is what nature designed humans to be. I no more say we should eat only meat than that I say we should all live under the sea. We have (genetically encoded) bacteria for meat digestion as well as plant digestion, meat processing teeth and plant processing teeth. Yes, it is possible to live a 100% vegetarian diet. That's fine and great. Is it morally better? Is it more natural? Is it more ecologically sustainable? No there is no evidence to suggest it is. There IS lots of evidence to say many current farming practices are bad. There IS ALSO much evidence to suggest organic foods are way better for the environment. I just don't see why vegetarians feel the need to confuse ecological sustainability with their own dietary preferences. Both diets can be good or bad depending on HOW they are practiced by the users and the industries that promote them.

Hypoxic 12-12-2007 09:49 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shanja
Well I don't see how clearing a forest and ripping up the soil for a crop hurts it less than having a cow graze there (and manuring the soil. Crops require fertalizer - either natural (where does that largely come from? Cows etc on farms etc) or synthetic (from factories). To produce the same amount of calories for food, crops require upwards of 5-10 times the land under culitivation regular pasture grazing requires. Intensive grazing degrades he land and is bad. Agreed. But careful grazing and understocking can be done on smaller amounts of land for more calorie yields. Most commercial crops are also mono-cultures which is devastating for ecosystems.
This shouldn't be a case of meat-eaters versus vegetarians. As I said I am an omnivore, and that is what nature designed humans to be. I no more say we should eat only meat than that I say we should all live under the sea. We have (genetically encoded) bacteria for meat digestion as well as plant digestion, meat processing teeth and plant processing teeth. Yes, it is possible to live a 100% vegetarian diet. That's fine and great. Is it morally better? Is it more natural? Is it more ecologically sustainable? No there is no evidence to suggest it is. There IS lots of evidence to say many current farming practices are bad. There IS ALSO much evidence to suggest organic foods are way better for the environment. I just don't see why vegetarians feel the need to confuse ecological sustainability with their own dietary preferences. Both diets can be good or bad depending on HOW they are practiced by the users and the industries that promote them.


Well put, Jake. It is true that we cannot equate vegetarianism with environmentalism - just as we can't confuse environmentalism with ecology (ecology 101, chapter 1). The best argument for a vegetarian diet must follow the reasons of cruelty, but that in itself can be solved by free-range/organic practices, which also, as you pointed out, are more sustainable.
Like I said before, I eat mostly fruits, grains, and vegetables, always organic, and eat free-ranged, grain fed chicken (also more sustainable) two or three times a month. I don't refer to myself as a vegetarian, I'm a 'sustainetarian' (I like to think I coined that term, but I'm not sure...:becky: I better get it in print!;) ). I eat more organic fruits, grains, and vegetables because the production of them produces less stress on land and water systems than free-range animal products do. I also feel, though agreeing with you, that humans likely ate more - perhaps much more - fruits, nuts, and vegetables than they did meat as the former would've been easier to get (that's why globally grains and vegetables form the staples of diets - potatoes and rice, for example); though, yes, I agree we are simply biologically encoded to consume both plant and animal protein.
Again, though, stressing my point, we simply have to limit impact, and organic products - meat, fruits, grains, and vegetables - are the most sound way of doing that if we choose to live within the economical system that provides food; otherwise, having our own little organic crops to self-sustain us is the best way to go - and the wife and I are likely going to start growing potatoes, lettuce, sweet potatoes, and onions come April in a little plot we're renting.

shanja 12-13-2007 02:19 PM

Wow! I like that word...I think you did coin it, and if not I'll support you're claim anyways. You know growing your own is a great example of how everyone can have a positive impact. There is this great architect I saw on TV from Japan (or maybe Singapore I forget) whose whole focus is on redesigning buildings to fully incorporate water retriculation (a closed system essentailly where all water in an area is recycled and reused in infinatum) greenery for food production (supplementary) and CO2 processing as well as being basically energy generating and self sufficient structures hooked up to a grid only to give excess energy, not draw it. Thereby removing 90% of the need for seperate power stations and most waste water treatment centres. The technology is there already, but retro-fitting entire cities takes a lot of work and political will.
I'm also sure humans are OVER CONSUMING meat based products, hence my own 3 days a week (roughly) of vegetarianism. Organic anything is way better than syntheticly produced/ assisted. But we must realize naturally occuring species have extremely limited room for development be cross-breeding etc. It's a sad fact that super yields really will require GMO technology...but hopefully be better utalizing our resources we can avoid the demand for such super yields. I think essentialy the main issue is how to more equittably distribute what resources we have and restructure our economies away from fossil fuel dependencies.
Finally it's great to see KOTRers able to toss ideas around like this, though it might need it's own thread soon! Whatever differences we have, our hopes and goals are far more similar.

Hypoxic 12-13-2007 02:53 PM

Quote:

Originally Posted by shanja
Wow! I like that word...I think you did coin it, and if not I'll support you're claim anyways. You know growing your own is a great example of how everyone can have a positive impact. There is this great architect I saw on TV from Japan (or maybe Singapore I forget) whose whole focus is on redesigning buildings to fully incorporate water retriculation (a closed system essentailly where all water in an area is recycled and reused in infinatum) greenery for food production (supplementary) and CO2 processing as well as being basically energy generating and self sufficient structures hooked up to a grid only to give excess energy, not draw it. Thereby removing 90% of the need for seperate power stations and most waste water treatment centres. The technology is there already, but retro-fitting entire cities takes a lot of work and political will.
I'm also sure humans are OVER CONSUMING meat based products, hence my own 3 days a week (roughly) of vegetarianism. Organic anything is way better than syntheticly produced/ assisted. But we must realize naturally occuring species have extremely limited room for development be cross-breeding etc. It's a sad fact that super yields really will require GMO technology...but hopefully be better utalizing our resources we can avoid the demand for such super yields. I think essentialy the main issue is how to more equittably distribute what resources we have and restructure our economies away from fossil fuel dependencies.
Finally it's great to see KOTRers able to toss ideas around like this, though it might need it's own thread soon! Whatever differences we have, our hopes and goals are far more similar.


Indeed.

Yeah, it likely does need its own thread now! We went from UNIMD preparation, to UNIMD high fives for a great day, to "how are we going to sustain ourselves?" I love the evolution of threads.

Okay, and I'm going to copyright the 'sustainetarian' term!:lol:


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