Sunday, March 1, 2009

East Coast and snowed in? Take some simple, meaningful actions

Ocean Conservancy's International Coastal Cleanup

Save the Date: Ocean Conservancy to release "The Rising Tide of Ocean Debris: And What We Can Do About It" in March. The report compiles the findings of the 2008 International Coastal Cleanup providing a global snapshot of the problem of trash in our ocean.

Our own health is intrinsically tied to the health of the ocean, and we each have a personal responsibility for its care. The International Coastal Cleanup, the world's largest volunteer effort for the ocean, provides a unique opportunity to make a difference in your own backyard or favorite beach and be a part of a global movement. The 24th annual International Coastal Cleanup will be held September 19th worldwide.

For questions or to receive a copy of the report contact Media Relations Manager Michele Capots.

Double Murder in Russia - Human Rights First

Last month, a leading human rights lawyer and a freelance reporter were gunned down in the middle of the afternoon in downtown Moscow. Both were returning from a press conference concerning the case of a Russian colonel charged with the murder of an 18-year-old Chechen girl.

Similar attacks have been repeatedly met with impunity. This one, in daylight and in front of dozens of witnesses, takes the danger faced by human rights defenders to a new level. Human Rights First responded quickly by sending a letter to Secretary Clinton and an appeal to President Medvedev. Thanks to those of you who joined our efforts!

HRF is pushing the new administration to take up this and other important human rights issues with Russia. Read more in our blueprint and in a recent Letter to the Editor in the Washington Times.

House Passes Act Stopping Chimps Sold as Pets - Petition at Care2

Lost in the pomp and circumstance of President Obama's non-State of the Union address on Tuesday was an important step in Congress for animal lovers. The House of Representatives passed the Captive Primate Safety Act by a vote of 323 to 95.

The Captive Primate Safety Act would make it illegal to engage in interstate and foreign commerce with primates as pets - making it much more difficult for people to buy a chimp as a pet. And given the recent incident in Connecticut (which fellow Care2 blogger Sharon S. so eloquently discussed earlier), it's becoming more and more clear that some sort of regulation is necessary to ensure something like that doesn't happen again. Ask your senator to sign on.

Regulate Toxic E-Waste

Target: U.S. Congress
Sponsored by:
Do you want the latest and greatest technology? Before you decide, consider that over-consumption has led to 20-50 million metric tons of toxic e-waste worldwide each year. And the U.S. does not federally mandate recycling of e-waste.

Most old or unusable computers, televisions and cell phones are shipped off to Asia or West Africa where they are smashed and scrapped for precious metals. Young people seeking to earn a little money work at dumps to demolish electronics for valuable parts. But unknowingly they are exposed to poisonous chemicals like mercury, lead and cadmium, all known to cause cancer.

In an effort to prevent international dumping of e-waste 170 countries agreed to notify developing nations of incoming hazardous waste shipments. Sadly, the U.S. is the only industrialized country that would not sign the agreement.

Dumping e-waste is harmful to the poor nations where it ends up and harmful to the environment. The EPA refuses to take responsibility for international dumping of e-waste.
Tell Congress that it's time to federally regulate e-waste dumping.

Photo from the Ocean Conservancy's photostream at Flickr.

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