guzzling tummies

Flicking through an old copy of Country Living, I came across ‘All you need to know about BIOFUELS’. Well in my case, its never ‘all’ I need to know. I always have far more questions than what are answered.

Back in 2006, the Labour Transport Secretary was working towards a target of all diesel and petrol containing a blend of 5% biofuels by 2010. This would apparently have had the same effect as taking one million cars a year off the roads. Well its 2014 now. I’ve had a quick rummage on the internet, and so far have not found any evidence that suggests we did reach that 5% goal. Nothing is loudly boasting that we achieved it, so without spending endless hours on further research, for now I am going to presume that we did not reach the target. However, that does not mean that nothing at all was achieved.

I also learnt that most diesel engines will run effectively on 100% biodiesel, but that only a few of the vehicle manufacturers ‘officially’ approve this. Fancy that. I wonder who might be filling their pockets!

What I did know already, is that to grow enough crops here in the UK, to fill the guzzling tummies of all of our diesel vehicles, we simply do not have enough land. We would not have land left to grow food for ourselves. What does that tell us?  Well it screams in bright neon flashing lights to me, that there are too many people, with too many vehicles, requiring too much fuel, for one weeny country.

Another thing that I was reminded of, is how growing nothing but biofuel plants (rape or sunflower) creates huge areas of agricultural monoculture. Which loses us our wonderful biodiversity of life. Of birds and bees and butterflies and wild flowers and, well, pretty much much everything really. Something that wildlife and biodiversity experts are continuously attempting to reverse the effects of.

So where does that leave us? Its catch 22. If we do nothing about emissions, the impacts of the ultimate sped-up climate change will drastically affect biodiversity. The variety of life. If we attempt to fix things, we could also accidentally kill off some essential ingredients of planet Earth.

When I ponder these things, I always reach the same conclusion. There are too many people on the planet. Consuming too many resources. Less mouths to feed = less vehicles = less emissions = a healthier happier planet.             

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About Olivia N Masi

From art college drop-out, to office space-planner, to back-packer, to air stewardess, to brolly babe, to model agent, to wildlife conservationist. How? I've always believed in jumping at every opportunity that comes my way. This has taken me along some bizarre career paths. None of which I regret. I have been to amazing places and met fascinating people. And having worked in the motor sport industry I've sadly experienced too many beloved friends take one adrenalin step too many. I think of them always. I've hung out with pop-stars, sports personalities, and millionaires. I reached a point when nothing but VIP would do. And then something happened. My pops passed away and I felt the need to reconnect with my Italian side. Whilst in Italy, I learnt to be resourceful, to recycle everything, to listen to the valley, to grow my own veg, to catch and tame feral cats, and to follow my heart. My heart led me to a desire to save this beautiful Earth, and all the wonderful life upon it. And so I read, and then I studied with the Open University. I suddenly found myself accepted on a BSc in Wildlife Conservation, having left school with pitiful qualifications. So here I am. A qualified Wildlife Conservationist. A scientist I suppose. I love nothing more than to listen to birdsong, and watch, learn and photograph wildlife. So here is to me getting the perfect job where I can contribute to saving one of Earth's beautiful species. Do I miss the glamour of the old life? The VIP lifestyle? The petrol-head adrenalin? The buzz of being a successful business owner? Only occasionally. Though it seems more like the distant dreams of a previous life.
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