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Archives for December 2013

Breaking News: Anti-Fracking & Tar Sands Protesters Arrested at Devon Tower

devon protestAccording to Great Plains Tar Resistance, a total of 10 activists have been arrested at a protest at Devon Tower in downtown OKC. Their last update said that six of the activists have been released with four still in police custody.

The activists from Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance and Cross Timbers Earth First! looked themselves inside of a revolving door at Devon Tower this morning. The action is in protest of Devon’s involvement in toxic tar sands extraction and fracking.

“I’m opposed to the industry’s blatant disregard for human wellbeing in the pursuit of profit,” said Cory Mathis of Austin, TX—one of the activists locked down inside Devon. “These industries poison countless communities, often deceive and coerce folks into signing contracts, and when that doesn’t work, they use eminent domain to steal the land. Texas and Oklahoma have long been considered sacrifice zones for the oil and gas industry, and people have for the most part learned to roll over and accept the sicknesses and health issues that come with the temporary and unsustainable boost in employment.”


Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance reported the first arrest at 10:50 this morning. Police were called to the scene this morning and shut down the 300 block of Sheridan because of the protest. The street reopened just after 11:30 a.m. According to Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance’s lawyer, police are considering “terrorism hoax” charges for two of the protesters, “in relation to glitter falling from the banner as it unfurled.”

Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance is asking for donations to help with legal fees for the protesters. You can donate and find more information on their website- http://gptarsandsresistance.org

Oil Starting to Flow Into the Keystone XL

keystone xl pipelineOn Saturday, December 7, 2013 TransCanada began to inject oil into the southern leg of the Keystone XL pipeline. In the coming weeks TransCanada will inject around three million barrels of oil into the pipeline. Once the pipeline goes into service, which is expected to happen on Jan. 3, 2014, it will carry up to 700,000 barrels of oil per day. The pipeline will carry oil from Cushing, Oklahoma to the gulf.

Many in the Oklahoma oil and gas industry are happy about the pipeline as it will help to relieve the glut of crude oil in Cushing.

“We have a lot of oil being developed in the state. Having another outlet going south is very positive for us,” said Tony Say, CEO of Oklahoma City-based Clearwater Enterprises.


Environmentalist, landowners and others throughout the state and country oppose the pipeline because of the risks that come along with the pipeline, many also oppose how TransCanada acquired the land for the pipeline, and some in the oil industry aren’t happy with the oil being taken to the gulf for export, instead of being used here.

Many Oklahomans fear oil spills as tar sands oil, a heavy crude oil from Canada, pipelines have a poor record when it comes to spills. The oil is also more toxic than traditional crude oil and harder to clean up.

One group that opposes the pipeline is the Great Plains Tar Sands Resistance. They participated in several protests which included civil disobedience and resulted in arrests. Their spokesperson, Jay Morris had this to say about the pipeline becoming operational.

“It’s incredibly unfortunate, but we’ve learned valuable lessons on what levels of resistance these projects must face for us to stop them dead in their tracks. While we can choose to focus on our defeat– the Gulf Coast Segment of the Keystone XL beginning to pump its toxic fuel stock–it is also incredibly important to look at other tar sands infrastructure projects that are still in construction. The Seaway Pipeline will actually exceed the Gulf Coast Segment in it’s capacity to move tar sands to the Gulf, and the Flanagan South, which is comparable to the Keystone XL in capacity and strategic importance to the industry, is currently being built from “Illinois” to Cushing. And always, you can look over the horizon and imagine the reality of the tar sands, or you can look towards Cushing and see the machine that keeps the toxic oil and gas industry functioning.”

TransCanada is still awaiting approval from the Obama administration to construct the northern leg of the Keystone XL. The approval is needed for the northern leg because it crosses the U.S.- Canada boarder.

Photo credit: shannonpatrick17

Oklahoma Green Gift Guide

okgifts

It’s time to finish up your Christmas shopping and we have some great green gift ideas from local stores. Shopping locally will not only help cure your cabin fever from the winter storm but also help support your community.

Out of every $100 spent at a local store, $68 returns to the community. Out of the same $100 spent at a national chain only $43 returns to the community. We hope you enjoy these ideas and commit to shopping locally this year, even if you only with part of your budget.

Mini Pie

A mini pie from Backyard Bounty Bakery is great for the person on your list with a sweet tooth.
The pies would also be a fun dessert to take to a party.

bars of soap


Theraganics has many great bath and body products including a set of three bars of soap, which would make a great gift.

coop

The Oklahoma Food Cooperative has so many wonderful items that would make great gifts.
One great idea is to give a Oklahoma Food Cooperative membership.
Oklahoma Food Cooperative memberships are lifelong so it’s a gift that keeps giving.

bathsalts

With all the holiday stress some De-Stress bath salts from Love the Earth Products is a great gift for the bath lover on your list.

green-toys-airplane

Can’t forget the kids on your list. Green Bambino has many great eco-friendly toy options, including
this Green Toys airplane. Green Toys are made from recycled milk jugs and are free of the toxins that can be found in many toys.

lip balm

Lip balm from Love, Grapefruit makes a great stocking stuffer. With all of this cool weather who can’t use a little lip balm?

ipermie
For the book lovers and gardeners on your list Oklahoma permaculture expert, Bob Waldrop’s book iPermie is the perfect gift.

Screen Shot 2013-12-10 at 12.30.07 PM

Gadget lover on your list? Why not get them this ethically made iPad case.
You can get it from SHOP GOOD, along with many other great gifts.

soap_lotion_gift_box_400

Soap for Goodness Sake makes and sales all kinds of great natural bath products.
This gift set is one wonderful gift idea that’s perfect for the ladies on your list.
It includes a soap, lip balm, lotion and a blank card and envelope.

wreathcake

This beautiful wreath cake from Two Bunny Bakery is a great gift and would also be perfect for your holiday parties.
It’s a chocolate cake with vanilla buttercream, decorated with Unreal natural chocolate candies.

cellar

Need a hostess gift for a holiday party? Cellar Wine & Spirits has a huge selection of wine include organic wines and local wines.
They also have organic spirits and beer that also make great gifts.

coffee

Locally roasted coffee makes a wonderful gift. Mariposa coffee can be found at Native Roots Market
and is sure to please the coffee lovers on your list.

cheese

Forward Foods has an amazing selection of cheeses that are perfect for parties and gifts.

basket

 Can’t pick just one gift? Pick up several and put them in a Fair Trade basket from Native Roots Market for a wonderful and thoughtful gift. Wine and local cheese, bath products, coffee, a mug and a sweet treat, the options are endless.

Have more great local and eco-friendly gift ideas? Share in the comments below or join the conversation on our Facebook page

Little Sprouts Learning Garden

Oklahoma ranks 43rd among all states for overall health and we come in last for our fruit and vegetable consumption. There are several things that contribute to these statistics. Oklahoma’s low median income and high poverty levels, as well as the high density of fast food and convenient stores in many of our communities.

Another factor is that access to good, nutrition food is limited in much of Oklahoma. 32 of our 77 counties are classified as food deserts, meaning at least 25 percent of the population lives ten miles or more from a supermarket. We have nine counties classified as severe food deserts,” meaning that the entire population has limited access to healthy food.

Little Sprouts Learning Garden


One way Oklahomans can help improve our states health and increase our consumption of fruits and vegetables is to grow our own food. One Oklahoman is teaching her daycare children to do just that. Christina Kamp has been teaching children in her home for 18 years. For the past two years she has been teaching them to grow a sustainable garden, Little Sprouts Learning Garden, without the use of synthetic chemicals.

Teaching children to garden has many benefits for the children and our communities. One benefit is that, children are more likely to try fruits and vegetables that they have grown. Many children also lack basic knowledge of fresh food due to their lack of access, this encourages them to make poor food choices later in life. By exposing kids to healthy, fresh foods early in life helps them to make better and healthier choices as teens and adults.

Kamp has the opportunity to expand her current garden and continue this great mission. They need some supplies to help expand the garden and are asking for donations to help fund the project. They currently produce almost 300 pounds of produce, enough to feed the kids for several days a week throughout the growing season. Their hope is that with the expansion they can grow enough to feed the kids everyday throughout the growing season and preserve food for other times during the year as well.

You can help Little Sprouts Learning Garden by donating to their Indiegogo campaign. There are 12 days left for the campaign and every dollar counts. Share with your friends and family. Together with people like Christina Kamp, we can give Oklahoman’s children a healthier future.

Breaking News: Earthquake Rattles Oklahoma

oklahoma earthquake

At around 12:11 p.m. an earthquake rattled Oklahoma. The earthquake was located near Jones, Oklahoma. The U.S. Geological Survey is reporting it as a 4.5 magnitude quake, the Oklahoma Geological Survey has reported it as a 4.8 magnitude quake.

The earthquake was felt all over the state with people even in north Texas reporting that they felt it. There are some reports of cracks in foundations around the metro area, no other reports of damage so far.

Oklahomans are encouraged to check that they have earthquake insurance as only around 1% of Oklahomans currently do. Also check out the Oklahoma Insurance Departments earthquake tips. And let us know if you felt it and where you are located if you did.

Gluten Free White Chocolate Fruit Pizza

This is one of my favorite dessert dishes. It is certainly a favorite with my family. Try it  – you will get rave reviews. The kiwis and strawberries make it an excellent, unique Christmas dish, but you can also add other fruits like canned pineapple or mandarin oranges as well.

fruitpizza

Crust:

  • 1 ½ cups organic, unsalted butter (softened at room temperature)
  • 1 cup powdered sugar
  • 3 cups gluten free baking flour (I often use Pamela’s or Bob Mills)

Filling:

  • 1 12 oz package white chocolate baking chips
  • ¼ cup organic whipping cream
  • 1 8 oz package organic cream cheese (softened at room temperature)

Fruit Topping:

  • Strawberries (1 pint)
  • Kiwi (4 or 5)

Additional possible fruit to use: Canned Pineapples (1 20oz can), Mandarin Oranges (1 11oz can), Grapes

Glaze:

  • 1/3 cup pineapple juice
  • 3 tablespoons sugar
  • 2 tsp. cornstarch
  • ½ tsp. lemon juice

Crust Directions:

  1. Preheat oven to 300 degrees.
  2. Using a hand mixer, cream together the powdered sugar and butter.
  3. Slowly and gradually add the gluten free flour to the mixture.
  4. Once a dough like consistency has been achieved, press the crust mixture evenly into a large pizza pan.
  5. Bake for 20-25 minutes or until golden brown.
  6. Cool crust to room temperature. (place in freezer for 10 minutes if you are running short on time)

Filling Directions:

  1. Make sure your hand mixer is cleaned and ready to go.
  2. Melt white chocolate chips in microwave for 45 seconds – 1 minute (follow package directions). Be careful not to cook too long, the chips will easily burn.
  3. Immediately add a small amount of the whipping cream to the melted chips and quickly stir. (note – due to the differences in temperatures, melted chips will immediately begin to thicken; however, adding only a small amount of whipping cream at first will prevent hardened bits of white chocolate morsels from forming).
  4. Pour remaining whipping cream and cream cheese mixture into melted chips and use the hand mixer to beat until smooth.
  5. Spread white chocolate mixture over cooled crust.
  6. Refrigerate for at least 30 minutes (note – you can make crust and filling 1-2 days ahead of time and finish it with fruit topping and glaze on the day you need it)

Fruit Topping Directions:

  1. Slice and cut fruit as you wish and arrange over top of white chocolate filling. (note – if you decide to use canned pineapples as well, simply save the canned juice for the glaze)

Glaze Directions:

  1. In a small saucepan, combine pineapple juice, lemon juice, cornstarch, and sugar.
  2. Bring all ingredients to a boil and then stir for 1 minute or until thickened.
  3. Remove from heat.
  4. Quickly, before allowing it time to cool, brush glaze over top of fruit. The glaze adds a shine to the tart and also helps preserve the fruit color while acting like a glue.

Keep refrigerated before and after serving.

NOTE – This recipe is modified from the original found at Taste of Home.

DIY Holiday Gift Guide

Handmade gifts can be fun and help you gift a truly unique gift. We found several great ideas for eco-friendly DIY gifts for everyone on your list.

DIYChristmas

Magnetic Story Board
eReader & Tablet Case
Soap Pouch (Great with soap from Theraganics or Soap for Goodness Sake)
Rosemary Mint Shaving Cream
Lip Balm
Pancake Mix in a Jar
Framed Family Recipe
Body Polish
Rose Petal Lemon Balm Jam
Rosemary Napkin Rings
Gluten Free Lemon Poppy Seed Bread
Salt Scrub

If you have any DIY ideas share them in the comments below or share on our Facebook page