Do We Know How to Protect Nature?

Today, Frebruary 2019, is World Day for the Protection of Nature. If we were asked each one if we know how to protect it, we would all answer yes. For example, keeping it clean and respecting it, not tearing up plant species, without interfering in the life of animals or things like that. But there is much more…

Caring for and preserving nature is in everyone’s hands, in our attitudes and behaviors, but it is not an easy task as it may seem. In addition to the gestures of each one, of the individual commitment that we acquire protecting our closest natural environments, we must also think that any type of human activity has an impact, no matter how small, on natural ecosystems.

The World Conservation Congress of the International Union for the Conservation of Nature, IUCN, held in Hawaii in May with the motto “Planet at the Crossroads”, identified several solutions to the problem of the deterioration of the environment and the resources that we offers nature. Many of them are applicable in our daily life.

This is the case of food waste. Trying to reduce it in our homes as well as in distribution chains is fundamental to ensure the continuity of many natural resources, both for the global food security of animals and humans and to preserve green areas.

This reduction, in addition to waste, can also reduce the use of water resources in the food production chain, since water is a fundamental resource to maintain life on the planet in all orders. For example, in forests or forests, which are a fundamental part of our biodiversity and the fight against climate change.

Precisely combating climate change is another of the strategies pointed out in Hawaii to conserve nature, and vice versa. “Healthy ecosystems – terrestrial, freshwater, marine and coastal – can act as powerful sinks and carbon deposits and establish the bases of resilience to the impacts of climate change,” says the IUCN in this regard.

As important as reducing food is also to recycle packaging and avoid the presence of plastics in the ocean. Although the total extent of marine protected areas exceeds that of terrestrial areas, there is much to be done in this regard.

“Ocean warming and acidification can not be ignored. The predominance of plastic waste in the ocean, and its effects on marine food chains demand that we look for ways to ‘close the tap’ of plastic, “says the IUCN.

To remember these ways to protect nature and enjoy everything that offers us nothing better than visiting three samples that these days exposes the National Center for Environmental Education, CENEAM. One of them, which can be seen until January 5, deals with the hundred years of National Parks. The exhibition “Mementos” on nature photographs can be visited until November 23, and the exhibition “Sierra de Guadarrama, National Park: refuge of nature and culture” until January 5.

Nature is not as far from us as we sometimes believe … or we are not as far from nature as it may seem. Look around carefully and you will discover that in your own city, in your neighborhood, in your own street, there is a great natural diversity that we have to take care of.

Can Energy Be Generated in Landfills?

The common sense of sustainability is to prioritize the reduction, reuse and recycling of waste, but ultimately envisages its value as a valid option to avoid ending up in a landfill.

The process of using waste to produce energy is called recovery, which is nothing more than obtaining energy from waste that can not be separated and is not recyclable. These are transferred to biomethanization plants where they are transformed into biogas or burned to produce energy.

For example, in the case of plastics, do not forget that they are made mostly of oil, so when burned, “generate as much heat as natural gas or diesel, and can be used to produce electricity and heat”, point out from the Energy Foundation of the Community of Madrid.

To give you an idea, of the two million tons of plastic waste of domestic origin that are produced annually in Spain, about 14% is used to generate energy. And is that “the combustion of a ton of plastic bottles generates as much energy as burning 1.4 tons of coal,” says Fenercom.

The same sources assure that only with the plastic film that arrives at the landfills could be obtained more than 185 million liters of diesel recovered per year, enough to supply heating to some 50,000 homes.

This process is also part of the concept of “circular economy” that tries to make the most of all the resources we put into circulation instead of using new ones, a bad habit that destroys the planet’s biodiversity.

In the case of organic waste, which accounts for almost half of the total weight of garbage that we generate in our homes, it can be burned in incineration plants and produce electricity or also be used to produce bioethanol and biodiesel, and use them in place of the gasoline and diesel. This last option is more efficient because when retaining a lot of humidity they do not generate much heat when they burn, explain the same sources. Every 10 kilograms of organic waste we can obtain up to 500 cubic meters of biogas.

Likewise, organic waste is used to obtain biogas, which is as good as fuel for transport as for heating or electricity. One cubic meter of biogas equals 0.6 cubic meters of natural gas, and for every ton of waste, up to 500 cubic meters of biogas can be produced.

The point is that if the biogas that is generated in the landfills is not captured and used -this is done in about 34 of the 183 landfills we have in Spain- it ends up being burned or allowed to escape into the atmosphere, with what this means in emissions of greenhouse gases, the main cause of global warming.

In any case, remember that the most important thing is to respect the “Rule of Three Rises: reduce, reuse and recycle”, in this order, since when we apply it we recover much more energy than we get when we use waste as energy. For example, making paper from a used one requires 65% less energy, and so with everything…

With WWF and MARSU, I Say NO to Illegal Timber

Do you know that 14% of French imports of raw and semi-processed wood come from tropical countries? 40% of these imports would be illegal and France is the largest importer of African wood!

Because 50% of the world’s forest has disappeared since the last glaciation! Because 200,000 hectares of tropical forests (nearly 23,000 football fields!) Are destroyed every week! Because a large part of these forests is exploited illegally:

It is urgent to act with the campaign:
“I say no to illegal timber! When buying wood, make the right choice! “.

Deforestation is a disaster for the populations of these countries: it deprives them of food sources (meat, fruits, seeds…). It is also a disaster for animals: the destruction of their forest leads to their gradual disappearance. In addition, the opening of roads through the forest promotes poaching.

How to fight against deforestation?

By buying wood bearing the FSC label which guarantees the traceability of wood. “Traceability” is a method that tracks the path from its original forest to its distribution in the store, which ensures that the wood does not come from illegal or illegal slaughter.

The legality of a timber is established through this chain of custody and the many mandatory documents that accompany it.

For sustainable forest management

Ask your parents to buy priority products (for example garden furniture) bearing the FSC label! This label guarantees that the wood has been cut according to “sustainable management” methods, going beyond legality. Sustainable management guarantees the mode of exploitation, its environmental impacts (opening of roads and tracks, threats to habitats, soil, unthinking felling, etc.) and respect for the rights of local populations.

Viva Palombia! Viva Ecologia! Viva Marsu!

Marsupilami is committed to fighting deforestation and protecting biodiversity!

At a time when the planet is finally aware of the dangers of global warming, pollution and savage deforestation, Marsupilami is committed … He is the uncontested king of the equatorial forest …

Join the fight to keep our planet habitable!