Category: Environment

News from the Environment Committee or related to the environment and posted by another group

Zero Waste Holidays 1 – Gift-giving tips

Our annual zero waste event will be Wednesday December 16. I’ll be posting some blog posts prior to that to get you in the mood. Your contributions are very welcome on the zoom call or in advance. I can post here.

This post is by Vivian Davidson who will be one of the speakers on December 16th.

by Vivian Davidson

The holidays are often a season filled with gift-giving and consumerism and our wallets, the environment and emotional wellbeing take a huge hit. This does not need to be the case.  I and my family have long espoused the spirit of the holidays over the consumerist ethos that has overtaken what is supposed be festive occasions.  As such I have developed very sustainable practices when thinking about what and how I give.  Below are some examples that I hope will help you in your ethical gift giving journey 😊 after all there is no reason not to spread joy and love whilst conserving our environment, sanity and creating beautiful memories and experiences.  

For starters, whatever physical gifts I give I prioritize local and sustainable.  I research companies in Vancouver that are committed to sustainable materials and processes so I forgo the ubiquitous big-name online shopping companies that mostly do not provide these choices. 

 will then wrap said gifts in things like newspaper or cool ads/pages from magazines that might be colourful to add some art to the wrapping.  Also, I tend to prefer what I have called “moments over tokens” which is to give experience-based items over ‘stuff’; for example, buying tickets for art events like theatre shows or art exhibits or a festival especially now to support local shops and the Arts and artists as much as possible. So, focusing on experiences rather than items. On that vein, I also like to get gift cards to local restaurants to support local businesses which again, is even more meaningful now.

I also like to find out people’s spirit animal or a favourite animal or flower or tree and sketch that for them along with a poem or short write-up about them and my relationship with them and what I treasure about knowing them.

Something not many people do which I highly encourage they do, is to give themselves a treat; some people call it a ‘guilty pleasure’ yet I like to call it ‘self care’, something we tend to overlook in our hyped and busy lives. So, for my ‘self care’ treat I like to gift myself a massage or anything body care related as during the year I really ask a lot of my body and giving back to it is something I never regret 😊 

So, hopefully I have given you some inspiration and a way to give to others, to yourself and to mother Nature this holiday season and well, hopefully throughout the year as well 😀 stay calm, safe and happy everyone 😊 

What are your zero waste tips?

Join our facebook group and share.

https://www.facebook.com/groups/zerowasteunitarian

UCV Statement of Solidarity with the Mi’kmaq

In accordance with the commitment in our Territorial Acknowledgement to shifting the colonial default, the Board has ratified Tamiko Suzuki’s eloquent letter to the Prime Minister voicing UCV’s pledge of solidarity with the  Mi’kmaq fishers in Nova Scotia fighting for their treaty rights and urging the Federal government to actively support these rights. The letter also denounces both the racist violence by non-Indigenous rioters and the hands-off stance of the RCMP.

UCV Statement of Solidarity with the Mi’kmaq:

The Unitarian Church of Vancouver pledges solidarity with the  Mi’kmaq in Nova Scotia, who are fighting for their treaty protected right to catch and sell fish for a moderate livelihood. This right was written in the Peace and Friendship Treaties of 1760/61, and reaffirmed by the Supreme Court of Canada with the Marshall decision in 1999. We urge the Federal Government to actively support this treaty right.

We denounce both the racist violence  by non-Indigenous rioters and the hands-off stance of the RCMP. We strongly urge the RCMP to protect Mi’kmaq communities from any further mob violence or personal threats. 

Forest Walk – September 2020

Pacific Spirit Park, Sept 12, 2020 | The haze in this photo is not a typical West Coast mist or fog in early Fall. But rather smoke from forest fires burning in Washington State. While California is experiencing its worst forest fire season ever. Reminding us of the looming climate crisis and the need for climate action.

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Action Evenings

Learn Together, Act Together! 

On Wednesday evenings 7-8pm via Zoom, we’ll reflect together on significant issues of our times. Topics are curated and prepared in advance with videos, speakers, slideshows, and discussion points. This meeting offers a chance for shared learning, thoughtful dialogue, and the potential for collaboration for taking action.

All members and friends of UCV are welcome!

 

How to Join and What to Expect

Log in to our Zoom room ucv.im/action-evenings early from 6:45pm on Wednesday evenings as we’ll be starting right at 7. 

After 8, you are welcome to stay for a while to chat about the topic and exchange ideas for action.

You are not required to have any prior knowledge of the topic.

Scheduled Upcoming Events

Wed, Nov 25, 2020
7:00 pm - 8:00 pm
Action Evening - Genderfluid Book Reading

Past Event Recordings

To see all past event recordings, please visit the Action Evenings YouTube Playlist

 

Past Events

December 16 – Activist R&R: Adapting to a Covid Christmas
December 2 – Green Burials
November 25 – Gender Fluid Book Reading
November 18 – Trans Rights in the Workplace
November 4 – Compost and Permaculture
October 28 – Is Canada on the Verge of Developing the Political Will to End Homelessness?
October 14 – Roberts Bank Terminal 2
October 7 – Saving the Salmon Nourished EcoSystem of Our Coast
September 30 – Reconciliation is a Massive Failure
September 23 – Evolving Pathways of Nonviolence
September 16 – From Food Charity to Food Dignity
September 9 – What’s This About Tree Sitters?

 

Sign-Up for Updates and Reminders!

If you would like to sign-up to receive email reminders, meeting links, and updates about this recurring event, please sign up for the Action Evenings Updates below:

Pilgrimage to Burns Bog

So you’d like to know more about the Pilgrimage to Burns Bog? Many Unitarians have heard of this annual meditative walk, usually in conjunction with the Earth Day Service put on by the Environment Team.

For others, Burns Bog is a big mystery. What is it? Why is it so important? Why would Unitarians help organize a pilgrimage to a “swamp”?

Karl Perrin a long-time member of the Environment Team, answers those questions.

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Vegan Cooking with umami

Twelve people participated in our (first?) vegan cooking zoom call.
There seems to be enthusiasm so we may pursue this further, possibly with a monthly “ethical eating” zoom call, sharing our questions, answers, recipes. If you’d be interested, let me know at connect@vancouverunitarians.ca.

Possible topics

  • vegan desserts
  • environmental effects of the animal industry
  • nutrition issues
If you want to review the recording (technology glitches and all!) just click here:
Access Password: ucvucv1!

Resources

Denise has sent me a lot of information that I’ve pasted below.

If you’re on Facebook, do join us at the Unitarian Ethical Eating Group, https://www.facebook.com/groups/unitarianethicaleating/

Goals of the Ethical Eating Group:

  • build education and awareness around the importance of food choices
  • respect individual choices and diversity – provide support and information for people wanting to shift their eating choices
  • encourage congregational engagement on ethical eating and action.
  • provide information on Unitarian and Unitarian Universalist initiatives related to ethical eating and encourage people to engage as individuals or as congregations

approved by the Environment Committee of the Unitarian Church of Vancouver on October 13, 2013.

More resources from Denise

And here are some links and information from Denise sent after the session for sharing:

Vegan Cheese

Chao Cheese is quite decent, and fairly mild.
Then there is the local Daiya, which has been around a long time. I find the mozzarella or pepperjack shreds work well in pizza, pasta, enchiladas and a ton of other applications. It’s cheaper than some other cheeses. Daiya cream cheese works well too in recipes.
Someone was saying they are limiting saturated fat consumption. Me too. I only use such commercial cheeses for special occasions.
One of my favorite cheese brands is Nuts for Cheese especially the “Red Rind” and “Super Blue”. These are strong flavours. Can sometimes be found at a steep discount at Sunrise Market (Gore @ Powell).

I like Miyoko’s Kitchen Cheeses available from Vegan Supply 250 East Pender

https://vegansupply.ca/  and in natural food stores.

And this website links to her almond ricotta recipe.

Her book Artisan Vegan Cheese has recipes for yogurt, rejuvelac, and such ingredients for making cheese, as well as the actual cheese recipes.
Here is a favorite tempeh recipe of mine. I use olive – not coconut – oil; and I use maple syrup, not molasses.

Tempea brand local tempeh

Iron deficiency is the most common nutritional deficiency in the world among meat eaters and vegetarians alike, especially among young women.
Including vitamin C-containing food along with your iron-rich foods can greatly enhance absorption of the iron.
Pumpkin seeds and sesame seeds (see photos of their ‘butters’) are very good sources. (I use Crofters jam (has Vit C) over my toast spread with pumpkinseed butter).
Legumes (lentils, peas, beans) and grains (quinoa, wheat, teff, oats, etc., so breads and pastas) as well as dark leafy greens contain a fair bit of iron as well.
Many veg meats are sky-high in iron. Check out Gardein products, for example. (Their “Fishless Filets” also contain long chain Omega 3 fatty acids).

But if one is already iron-deficient, taking a round of supplements will likely bring iron levels up faster.

Here’s a list of umami condiments and ingredients.

  • Toasted Sesame Oil
  • Ketchup
  • Mustard
  • Vinegars
  • Soy Sauce & Tamari & Shouyu
  • BBQ Sauce
  • Vegan Worcestershire Sauce
  • Hoisin Sauce
  • Chili Sauce & Gochujang
  • Black Bean Sauce
  • Miso & Doenjang
  • Sauerkraut & Kimchi
  • Nutritional Yeast
  • Rejuvalac & Shio Koji
  • Certain Spices, e.g. black salt (kala namak);
  • smoked salt;
  • turmeric

Basic umami food ingredients

  • Tomatoes
  • Mushrooms
  • Seaweed (Kombu)
  • Olives
  • Beans
  • Soy Protein
  • Cheeses
  • Concentrated Foods (i.e. dried, reduced, dehydrated, etc.):
  • Dried Mushrooms and Tomatoes
  • Tomato Paste
  • Bouillon Concentrate
  • Yeast Extracts
  • Balsamic Reduction
  • Dried Fruit
  • Roasted, Toasted, Browned Foods:
  • Toasted Nuts and Seeds
  • Roasted Vegetables
  • Seared Tofu & Tempeh & Seitan

Fermented Foods

  • Sugar-Based: Alcoholic Beverages, Kombucha
  • Veg-Based:  Sauerkraut, Kimchi, Pickles
  • Mylk-Based: Cheeses, Yogurt, Kefir, Buttermylk
  • Grain & Tuber-Based: Breads & Porridges; barley malt; Rejuvelac
  • Bean-/Seed-/Nut-Based: Miso, Soy Sauce; Natto; fermented tofu (fulu, or chou doufu); Dosa (fermented lentil & rice crepe)

Here are some websites on umami

https://tabesuki.com/the-ultimate-guide-to-umami/

https://sweetvegtable.com/vegan-umami/

https://www.delishknowledge.com/plant-based-umami/

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Z5KwRV7Se1w

https://www.seriouseats.com/roundups/umami-ingredients

O Canada 2021 – Twelve days of honouring celebrations?

Next year, 2021, let’s celebrate a whole collection of summer holidays (holy days) for one grand summer festival honouring all people and other beings while bearing witness to the challenges that call Unitarians to keep on working for justice…

My covenant group met on Canada Day in 2020 and we shared some thoughts about what we liked and disliked about Canada Day. There were many things we appreciated about Canadian culture and political systems, and also many areas where we felt we still fell short and needed to keep on working. Following are some celebrations we could perhaps honour next year leading up to a more complete and satisfying celebration of Canada Day. (Ah…but who amongst us might take the lead!)

2021   Jun 20 Sunday World Refugee Day

This event honors the courage, strength and determination of women, men and children who are forced to flee their homeland under threat of persecution, conflict and violence.

Jun 20 Sunday Fathers Day

Father’s Day is an unofficial holiday to celebrate fathers around the world—although the date for celebration varies.

Jun 21 Monday Summer Solstice from a scientific viewpoint

It’s the scientific start to summer in the Northern Hemisphere, when this half of the world tilts toward the sun.

Litha – Summer solstice from a Wiccan viewpoint

The Solstice Teaches Us   A poem from the UUA Worship Web

Jun 21 Monday National Indigenous Peoples Day

A day to celebrate and learn more about the cultural diversity of the First Nations, Inuit, and Métis peoples in Canada.

Jun 21 Monday International Day of Yoga

Yoga is practiced in various forms around the world and continues to grow as a sport and a lifestyle. Traditional yoga has a meditative and spiritual core in addition to the physical exercises. The result is a wide variety of schools, practices, and goals within the yoga community. It is because of yoga’s holistic approach to body and mind that the UN decided in 2014 to dedicate June 21 to this ancient tradition.

“Yoga is a sport that can contribute to development and peace. Yoga can even help people in emergency situations to find relief from stress.” said Ban Ki-Moon, UN Secretary-General.

Jun 23 Wednesday Public Service Day

The United Nations’ Public Service Day is held on June 23 each year. It recognizes that democracy and successful governance are built on the foundation of a competent civil service. The day aims to celebrate the value and virtue of service to the community.

Jun 23 Wednesday International Widows’ Day

International Widows’ Day was introduced to address poverty and injustice faced by widows and their children in many countries. It was officially recognized by the United Nations in 2010 and is observed annually on June 23.

Jun 24 Thursday Fête nationale du Québec (FR)

Fête nationale du Québec (EN)     AKA Ste-Jean-Baptiste Day  (EN)

The people of Québec celebrate their national holiday with more than 750 celebrations held across the province on 23 and 24 June. Organized by nearly 20,000 volunteers, the festivities of the Fête nationale include more than 1,050 events and 360 bonfires, in addition to some of the largest public gatherings in Québec.

Jun 25 Friday Day of the Seafarer

In 2010, the International Maritime Organization (IMO), decided to designate June 25th as the International Day of the Seafarer as a way to recognize that almost everything that we use in our daily lives has been directly or indirectly affected by sea transport.  The purpose of the day is to give thanks to seafarers for their contribution to the world economy and the civil society; and for the risks and personal costs they bear while on their jobs.

Jun 26 Saturday  International Day Against Drug Abuse and Illicit Trafficking

to raise awareness of the major problem that illicit drugs represent to society. This day is supported by individuals, communities and various organizations all over the world. 

Jun 26 Saturday  International Day in Support of Victims of Torture

Rehabilitation centres and human rights organizations around the world celebrate the UN’s International Day in Support of Victims of Torture on June 26 each year. The day serves as a reminder to people that torture is a crime. This event gives everyone a chance to unite and voice their opinions against human torture.

Organizations, including the International Rehabilitation Council for Torture Victims and Amnesty International, have played an active role in organizing events around the world to promote the day. Activities may include photo exhibitions, the distribution of posters and other material to boost people’s awareness of issues related to human torture, and television advertisements.

Jun 27 Sunday Canadian Multiculturalism Day

Discover the significance of multiculturalism in Canada — ensuring that all citizens keep their identities, take pride in their ancestry and have a sense of belonging.

Jun 30 Wednesday International Asteroid Day

June 30 is the anniversary of the Tunguska impact, also known as the Tunguska event. On that day a large explosion occurred in the sky over the Podkamennaya Tunguska River in Siberia, Russia.

It destroyed about 2,000 square kilometers (770 square miles) of the forest in the area, flattening about 80 million trees. The area is sparsely populated, and there were no official reports of human casualties.

It is thought that an asteroid or a comet was responsible for the blast. The Tunguska event is considered to be the largest asteroid impact on Earth in recorded history.

2021 Jul 1 Thursday Canada DayUCV’s Patrick Dubois’ 2020 Musical Tribute

What do we need to do as Canadian Unitarians to help make Canada Day a time of celebration for all people and not just a settler’s celebration?

 

On-going

The Butterfly Way ProjectThe David Suzuki Foundation

Environmental Rights

Climate Solutions

Further information on 2021 holidays worldwide:

United Nations Holidays

timeanddate.com

UUA Worship Web – a poem on summer

Also:

  • Animal Rights Awareness Week – (Mid June) 13-19 June 2021?
  • Fish are Friends, Not Food Week! – (Last Week of June) 20-26 June 2021?
  • National Pollinator Week – 20-26 June 2021?

Oak Street Farmers’ Market

By Mary Lage

It was a grand adventure. The best of times. A crazy idea. A proud part of our Unitarian history. We started Vancouver’s first all-organic farmers’ market on the UCV parking lot …

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