April 9

Published by Panetary Health Initiative on

 

TODAY’S NEW ACTION

As we take the individual actions that are the beginning of all cultural and system change, it’s important to have a sense of how these actions are part of the bigger changing picture of our future. For my new action today, I’m going to start sharing three stories each day of ways we are moving forward to restore planetary health.

THE WAY FORWARD
    1. The world’s largest wildlife overpass, over a 10-lane highway in California, begins construction this month. This nature-centred construction is unusual among other wildlife bridges and underpasses around the world, which are typically made of cement and steel. This one is designed to seamlessly glide into the environment on both sides and is a precedent for how design can play a restorative role in the natural world. “As both a tool for and a symbol of connection, it will stand as an alluring challenge to future generations to pick up the mantle of design to bridge the gaps elsewhere in our world.” Read more in The Guardian
    2. Reefbuilder is a collaboration between State and Federal Governments and The Nature Conservancy, to restore Australia’s lost shellfish reefs from Noosa in Queensland to Perth in Western Australia. Marine scientist Simon Reeves, who has been seeing a greater diversity of marine life every time he visits the reef sites, believes they may be successfully recovering an ecosystem back from the brink of extinction. Read more at ABC News
    3. ‘Sponge Cities’ are using nature to tackle climate-fuelled floods. Adding more parks, trees, and other natural greenery or natural drainage can boost a city’s absorbency and make it more flood- and drought-resilient. Many cities are adding green spaces to increase sponginess and deliver other benefits, from cleaner air to wildlife habitat and places to escape summer heat. Those cities that proved most resilient, were those with the least concrete. Read more at NextCity
    PLANT-BASED EATING – Cardamom Tofu with Lime Greens

    Tonight I had leftover tofu, and lots of locally-grown pumpkin leaf tips, zucchinis and garlic, so decided to put together a quick stir fry on rice. The pumpkin vine stems work really well in this dish (another adaptation from one of Ottolenghi’s recipes in ‘Flavour’).

     

    Cardamom Tofu with Lime Greens

    A great way to use pumpkin vine stems and leaf tips

    Ingredients
      

    • 100 gm plain flour
    • 100 gm cornflour
    • 1 ½ tbsp ground cardamom
    • 900 ml sunflower oil - for deep frying plus 2 ½ tbspn
    • 700 gm firm tofu cut into 2 ½ cm squares
    • 6 garlic cloves
    • 600 gm pumpkin leaves and stems (from the tips of the vines with the youngest leaves) - cut into short lengths
    • 1 large or 2 small zucchinis cut into rounds
    • 2 carrots cut into sticks
    • 2 tbsp sriracha hot sauce or any combination of flavours you like here for a stir fry sauce
    • 3 tbsp soy sauce
    • 2 tsp lime juice
    • salt and black pepper

    Instructions
     

    • Place the plain flour, cornflour, cardamom, 2 tspns salt and plenty of pepper in a medium bowl.
    • Heat oil in wok on medium heat. Once the oil is hot (just under 180C) toss the tofu in the flour. In batches carefully lower the cubes of tofu into the hot oil and fry for 3-4 mins, turning halfway, until crisp and golden brown. Use a slotted spoon to transfer the tofu to a plate lined with a tea towel. Clean wok or get another pan for next stage.
    • Heat remaining 2 ½ tbspns oil in clean wok or saute pan. On high, add garlic and fry for 1-2 mins then add carrots and zucchinis and fry for 2 mins, then pumpkin stems and leaves and fry for another 2 mins.
    • Add the sriracha, soy sauce, lime juice and 1 tbspn water and stir until liquid is bubbling. Throw in the tofu and toss through to warm. Serve on rice.

     

    PRODUCE > CONSUME

    Yesterday my post was about fixing rusty tools. A lot of our behaviours are rusted on and take a bit of an effort to shift. We believe that it’s quick and easy to duck out to the shops to grab some food, but it’s even easier to duck outside for a few minutes each day to plant some seeds. If it can become just as habitual, over time it’s possible to have a steady supply of your own healthy produce.

    Today was so cold and wet and grey again, that I felt the urge to sow Cosmic Purple carrots. I simply put an old recycling tub on the driveway, threw in some soil and a sprinkling of carrot seeds, and this wet weather should ensure germination without too much effort.

    Looking forward to getting a crop of these!

     

    WHAT ARE OTHER PEOPLE DOING TO RESTORE PLANETARY HEALTH?

    Carla sorted out some gardening tools she doesn’t use and gave them to a local teen starting a gardening job. 

    Oscar bought 6 large plants and started a balcony garden.

     

    The theme for World Health Day this year was Our Planet, Our Health – recognising that our health is totally dependent on the health of the earth’s natural systems.

    We managed to reach our target of over 365 actions in one day – the action of a whole year in a day! You can view most of them here (others came in via social media and emails).

    Now the challenge is to reach 365 actions EVERY day!

    We’d love you to share your actions with us so that we can learn from each other and inspire one another to turn things around to create a healthier world.

    Research by academics at Leeds University, engineering firm Arup and the C40 Cities climate group has identified that 73 per cent of all changes needed by 2030 to keep the world on course to meet the Paris agreement targets need to be made by governments and industry. But private citizens have considerable influence over the remaining 27 per cent. So let’s get cracking!

     


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