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News :: Environment & Food

Break Petroleum Dependency w/ Elderberry Jam

Suburban sprawl, SUVs, petrochemical fertilizer, pesticide and herbicide are rooted in our dependency on petroleum fossil fuels, still the main reason for the US occupation/puppet government of Iraq.
written for Rio Sacramento/San Joaquin Valley, same concept for here;

F/9/11 and the Bush/Kerry election is just the tip of the melting iceberg when it comes to looking at our dependency to petroleum fossil fuels and their numerous byproducts (plastics, pesticides, asphalt, etc.). The Middle East is a prime location for crude oil reserves, Iran, Iraq, Saudi Arabia, Syria, Kuwait, etc. contain the most easily accessible crude oil reserves due to tectonic plate folding (crude oil settles into deep pockets between the folds). Venezuala, Columbia and other nations in South America are secondary, part of Al Gore's Occidental Petroleum playground, part of reason why Bush is threatened by Venezuala's president Hugo Chavez..

The more crude oil drilled in Iraq, Kuwait, Saudi Arabia and brought to US refineries results in more paving as asphalt is a byproduct of the refining process. The more gas produced for SUVs means more excess asphalt that can be sold to big box corporations like Wal-Mart for their huge asphalt scab parking lots..

Jobs? Does anyone really enjoy standing out there in the blazing sun inhaling asphalt fumes while paving parking lots?

So we drive to work from sprawling suburban subdivisions in order to pay for gas and purchase food that was grown by agribusiness using petrochemically derived fertilizer, pesticide, herbicide, etc..

Kerry will not save us from this petrochemical mess, the petrochemical corporations still control both parties, they are the true puppetmasters, not Bush, not Kerry. Professional politicians are simply well paid spokespeople and propaganda spinmasters for the petroleum agenda..

What if people could work less, drive less and eat healthier food grown locally?

To counter the destructive effects of suburban sprawl, people can grow native plants that are also edible. Here you can support native wildlife like the valley elderberry beetle, currently a threatened species due to habitat loss from sprawl development. The berries of the Mexican (blue) Elderberry (Sambucus mexicana) are the edible byproduct of other insect's pollination. This win-win situation gives humans tasty berries (remove the seeds, don't eat the leaves) for elderberry jam, housing for beetle larvae inside the wood and nectar for pollinators. The small elderberry tree provides cool shade, exhales moisture via transpiration and also natural fertilizer via leaf litter..

Just as above, the relationship between elderberry and the ecosystem is just the tip of a much more positive iceberg, maybe the one that will save us from drowning in our petroleum dependency. Growing with native edible plants is a world yet unexplored by "modern civilized" people. The First Nations of California knew details countless native edible plants, when/where they grew, when/how to harvest/prepare, etc..

Can we learn to live in harmony with one another and the bounty of nature instead of exploiting our Mother Earth and bombing other nations (including our own) to steal their oil, minerals, forests, etc.??

Not too long ago Rio Sacramento and Rio San Joaquin flowed unhindered to the delta. Periodic floodings deposited sediment minerals and created seasonal wetlands rich in biodiversity. Herds of Tule elk grazed among the tule reeds, oaks dropped acorns rich in protein/carbs and bright red valley elderberry beetles spread their wings and flew into the sky while people harvested blue elderberries in woven grass baskets to prepare for jam..

..and nobody cared if Bush or Kerry won the election..

The past could become a much happier future..

Viva, viva anarchista!!

California Native Herbs used for their Medicinal, savory or aromatic qualities in Gardens;

Threatened Valley Elderberry Longhorn Beetle;

Blue Elderberry, Mexican Elderberry;

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