Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Visit our new site!!!

We moved our website to: Dance 4 Oceans!
Please visit our new site. Hope to see you soon!!!

Dance 4 Oceans

Wednesday, April 20, 2011

Easter is coming! Be GREEN. Be HUMANE!

It's time for me to go crazy, again! After my last rants about the Valentine's Day balloons, now nightmares of colorful eggs are attacking me every night!

Holidays are wonderful. We meet our friends and family to have good time. I have no objection to that. However, I would like to remind you that there is always a way to do it environmentally and humanely without loosing its meaning and joy.

Eggs are good for you as long as they came from the hens that are organically fed and raised in humane environment. However, unless you have seen the egg factory with your own eyes, it is hard to know if the label of the carton is telling you the truth.

Trying not to support chicken abuse, you could buy fake eggs. You could reuse them year after year to reduce waste, However, most of egg crafts are made of plastic. The paint of those crafts may contain lead as well, not to mention toxins in the junk food inside of the eggs.

So, how about making something original and use them as your family tradition. You can make cotton stuffed eggs, yarn eggs, wood eggs, or egg shaped stones. Be smart and creative. You will have more time with your kids by making something together instead of buying cheap plastics at a store.

Here are some examples: Knitted eggs, Yarn eggs, Stuffed eggs.

I personally like the idea of going to a beach with kids and pick up some egg-shaped beach rocks and paint them with No-VOC paint. What do you think?

Enjoy your weekend and be happy. But just remember, you will be happier if you do it the right way.

Friday, February 11, 2011

Watch out! Valentine's Day is coming!! Don't loose your LOVE!

Valentine’s Day is coming. It is one of the most romantic and exciting day of the year for all ages. However, there will be many “lost hearts” in the ocean.

Please read my blog from the last year right after Valentine’s Day. I picked up 16 hearts!

Estimates that 100,000 marine mammals and turtles and 1 million sea birds die every year from ingesting or becoming entangled in marine debris, including indigestible plastic that blocks stomachs. Sea turtles and other wildlife have been found starved to death with latex balloons blocking their stomachs. Even an infant sperm whale was found dead of starvation as a result of ingestion of an inflated Mylar balloon which had lodged in its intestines.

Mylar balloons are commonly bought as Valentine’s Day gifts. It’s made from metalized nylon (plastic) that is not biodegradable. They are filled with helium so that they float in the air. Plastic will stay on earth for hundreds of years. If you let go of the strings, they will travel far, and some may become entangled in power lines or trees, and other may land on the sea and create a serious entanglement hazard to marine animals.

Most of latex balloons are made from a natural substance and will biodegrade over time. The Balloon Council says that latex balloon release is safe as long as they are released with no strings or ribbons attached. (http://www.theballooncouncil.org/myths-facts.html)
However, that is not true at all.
When balloon go to high altitude, they break into spaghetti-like pieces and retune to earth. That shape of broken balloons can look like sea jellies, which are a major source of food for many sea animals. Sea turtles, dolphins, whales, fish, and seabirds have been found with balloons in their stomachs. According to The Balloon Council, “regardless of the latex balloon’s ultimate form when it lands, it will decompose, forming a natural soil nutrient at the same rate as that of an oak leaf.” If this were true, it would take 6 months to a year for latex balloons to decompose! That is way long enough to harm animals in the ocean! Some study in North Carolina says that balloons exposed floating in seawater deteriorate much more slowly than those exposed in air. I have a few latex balloons attached on my “Plastic Trash Zombie” costumes since Oct. 2009, and they still keep their shape and elasticity, though they have become a little bit sticky.

Balloons bring people fantasy and dream-like feeling. They are festive and uplifting. While it is almost impossible to ban balloons, we can educate ourselves not to let go balloons. If we receive a floating big heart on this coming Valentine’s Day, let's graciously thank the sender. But after his/her sweet message is successfully delivered, pop each one of them with care and carefully depose them into a trash bag. Never release balloons in the air if you don’t want to let go your love.

By the way, The Balloon Council’s website shows this record to prove that balloon releases do not harm environment as much as other individual balloons do. I personally believe that this is pointless. Besides, they found 288 balloon pieces during one single beach cleanup! We have to do something, Mr. Balloon Council!

In one Florida-wide cleanup there were 288 balloons/balloon pieces found. Of these:

• 79 were water balloons (not used in balloon releases)
• 38 were too small to have been released
• 96 had strings/ribbon/thread attached (never used in a release)
• 2 were valved (never used in a qualified release)
• 3 were shaped (never used in a qualified release)
• 70 — less than 25 percent — might have been used in releases

Photos courtesy by Danielle Frechette (Northern Fulmar), the U.S. Fish & Wildlife Service (power line), Sara Bayles (burst balloon).

Thursday, January 27, 2011

SEA PULSE films delivered positive messages!

On January 22, Macdonald Productions and Dance 4 Oceans presented Sea Pulse films, a film festival style setting event at the Electric Lodge in Venice.

The event started with "Heart of the Ocean" and "The World Ocean-Trashed" filmed by a marine videographer, Bill Macdonald to summarize the marine debris issue to start the program.

Bill documented the research of Captain Charles Moore, founder of the Algalita Marine Research Foundation. Captain Moore was a special guest speaker who talked about the impact of plastic pollution in the ocean. At the Q&A, he answered the common questions that I get often such as "What about recycling?" or "What about biodegradable plastic?" Our society is always inventing new ways to fix the problems. We come up with something new, which could be a new problem. It may be better than the old problem at this moment, but is still a problem. Somebody invents biodegradable plastic. It's better than non-biodegradable plastic. However, it still clogs the drainages and kills animals because it does not degrade fast enough. We also collect recyclable plastic to recreate something else. However we spend lots of money to ship it to China (or other undeveloped countries) for cheap labor and the workers in the recycling process are literally living in plastic debris, inhaling or ingesting its toxins. We have to change our life style with plastic from the basic instead of the acute treatments.

SEA PULSE films also introduced some of local activists. In the film "Watershed Steward", Lenny Arkinstall, a wetlands steward, is documented removing tons of plastic trash from the San Gabriel River, Los Cerritos Wetlands and Alamitos Bay. He was a land developer. He was driving a luxury car and was one of the first people in California to have a cell phone. Lenny gave up that life style and started to volunteer to clean the wetlands by installing floating litter traps by hand. He and his dog in his little dinghy went out there and gather trash into the traps with a long stick. Los Cerritos Wetland Steward became an educational program for young and old, now, and they do monthly cleanups and restoration activities.

Team Marine was a group of eco-minded young activists from Santa Monica High School, lead by a marine biology teacher, Benjamin Kay. Among of their numerous accomplishments, Team Marine's latest contribution to public is a ban on single-use plastic bags in Santa Monica, which has just passed on Jan 25. By supporting Heal the Bay, the students appeared with plastic costumes and spoke out at the court. SEA PULSE showed their film, "The 10 R’s", which is a solutions program, produced, directed and staring Team Marine. The local spotlight continued with "The Majestic Plastic Bag", a ‘mockumentary’ by Heal the Bay introduced by a new generation of watershed activist Zack Gold who is a co-president of Heal the Bay Surfrider Club and a son of the president of Heal the Bay.

Lastly, I introduced a film of Dance 4 Oceans, "Whales die, Zombies Dance". The film described what zombies do in protest as whales are suffering from ingesting plastic debris. The film was followed by Plastic Trash Zombie dance. Of course, the zombies stole the show! Little future activists and all other dance enthusiasts lit the depressed audience's faces. SEA PULSE films ended with positive feeling so that we can all change our thinking after walking out the theatre.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Who wants to live forever? Even plastic doesn't.

This video makes me cry. It really does. Plastic is amazing. It's durable and beautiful. But who wants to live forever after being used, discarded, torn, broken, faded, melted, eaten, and buried. It's touched, grabbed, held, hugged, sucked, and  loved for a few seconds to a few hours, and it becomes a nuisance, a burden, and a murderer of millions. We created it and we don't know what to do with it any more. It reminds me of Edward Scissorhands. It's sad for the victims, but it's sad for plastic itself.

Somebody called it "Planet Trash". I almost said, "Trash Planet". But that's too cruel to both the planet and the trash. Maybe, TRASH is us, humans. We appeared on this planet and trash it and will disappear someday. like a plague. I hope we find vaccine before we are gone.