This Week’s Eco-News

It’s been a bit of a slow week for EcoNews, given that most people are more worried about North Korea throwing a tantrum. Here are some of my favourite stories from the Guardian over the past few days…

Mexico considers importing avocados as staple priced out of consumers’ reach

I’ve heard this story before; well, something similar at any rate. The rise in “healthy” people in the West eating quinoa has priced it out of reach of South Americans who have eaten it for generations. This time it’s avocados, which are increasingly popular as a source of “good fats” and posh sandwich fillings. It’s a shame people can’t be encouraged to eat more locally sourced produce and be a bit more concerned about their food miles. They may learn to eat seasonally too, and discover what tomatoes and strawberries really taste like (answer – not flavourless mush). As the climate changes, our diets will change with it, but that’s no reason to put other people on the brink of starvation, is it?

Canary Island tourists warned to avoid toxic ‘sea sawdust’ algae

It would have been easy to go with the story about the teenager who got eaten by some kind of aquatic plankton in Australia, but since I’m already convinced that everything over there is designed to kill me, I opted for something different. That and the fact that my sister and her partner have recently returned from a trip to Tenerife meant this story had particular impact for me. Algal blooms are increasing, and probably will continue to do so as the climate changes – but they’re not all bad news. Bear in mind that it was algae that first started photosynthesis, thereby oxygenating the atmosphere which in turn led to life itself. Just wear a wetsuit when you go swimming out there.

Scientists Hope To Breed Asian “Unicorns”

Of course, they’re not REAL unicorns – they’re saola, an animal found in South East Asia and resembling an antelope that is both critically endangered and so rarely found very little is actually known about it. I’m going to stick my neck out here and say that two things we definitely do know about the saola are that they don’t fart rainbows or pee glitter. Rumour has it that the key to the survival of the saola is going to be found in captive breeding programmes, which would be wonderful if they succeed.

And that really is it! Hopefully there’ll be more next week, but in the meantime, have a fantastic weekend!


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