CARBON DIOXIDE FOUND INDOORS IMPACTS YOUR HEALTH

tired kitty

How often do you find yourself indoors? We are so concerned about the levels of carbon dioxide (CO2) that are found in the outside environment that you may not have any idea on the levels found inside. In fact, indoor CO2 concentrations may be impacting your well-being and your productivity. On average, you and children spend about 90% of time indoors. Knowing about the concentration of this toxic chemical found where you spend most of your time is an opportunity to make a major difference in your health.

Long term exposure to elevated carbon dioxide concentrations has a negative impact on your health, ability to learn, and productivity. As more people fill-up an indoor space then the availability of oxygen is reduced and carbon dioxide levels increases with every breath as a result of natural metabolic processes and respiration. If you are becoming stressed or are in an environment where there is increased physical activity then there will be less oxygen and more carbon dioxide gases located in the enclosed space.

The maximum threshold limit is measured in parts per million (ppm) where continuous exposure can harm your health. The Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) recommends that 1,000 ppm is the threshold limit where there may be negative health impacts with continuous exposure. On a typical day in a school classroom, the indoor CO2 concentration may start at 600 ppm. During the course of a day, the levels increase to 2,836 and may reach 4,181 ppm. In an office building, the levels range from 350 to 2,500 ppm. There have been negative health impacts at levels below 1,000 ppm. However, severe hazardous health outcomes have been found at levels from 2,000 to 5,000 ppm.

So how is your health impacted by the levels of CO2 in your space? Research indicated there were significant negative outcomes on teaching, learning, and productivity. Work performance is decreased, absenteeism in increased, and your cost of health care goes up.

There are symptoms when you have been spending long periods of time engulfed by elevated levels of carbon dioxide. You may recognize mucus and respiratory problems. You may have difficulty breathing; experienced headaches and dizziness; become tired; unable to concentrate or pay attention to task; and feel restless. Symptoms include sweating, tingling feelings, and your blood pressure may become elevated with an increased heart rate. Pay attention if you begin to have visual and hearing challenges. Extreme impacts include coma, convulsions, and death. Have you or a child complained of any of these challenges?

All is not lost since there are solutions to the indoor air quality hazards. There are different types of equipment that measure the CO2 concentrations found indoors that may be discovered through research or consulting with an expert. The problem may be with the heating, ventilation, air-condition, and ventilation systems (HVAC) that is outdated or not adequately sized in relation to the operating space. Sewer vents and furnace exhaust pipes may be releasing chemicals into the air around the building in question. Cars, buses, landscape equipment, or other fossil fuel combustion engine machinery may be releasing greenhouse gases close to the building. In addition, cigarette smoking impacts air quality when smoke mixes with the buildings indoor air.

The 21st century introduces many challenges that must be addressed due to increased levels of air pollution. There are benefits to paying attention to the environment where you and children spend most of their time. Being informed allows you to be part of the solution and proactive in your health and well-being.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

REFERENCES

1 Achilles, C.M., Jean Prout, J.D. Finn, and Gordon C. Bobbett. 2001. Serendipitous Policy Implications from Class-Size-Initiated Inquiry: IAQ?. Journal Code: RIEFEB2002. Accession Number: ED456494

2 Agency for Toxic Substances and Disease Registry. 2013. Website: http://www.dhs.wisconsin.gov/eh/chemfs/fs/carbondioxide.htm

3 Erdmann, C.A., K.C. Steiner, and M.G. Apte. 2002. Indoor Carbon Dioxide Concentrations and Sick Building Syndrome Symptoms in the Base Study Revisited: Analyses of the 100 Building Dataset. Proceedings: Indoor Air. Indoor Environment Department. Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. Berkeley. California

4 OSHA. What are the Allowable Limits of CO2 Exposure – Carbon dioxide exposure limit PEL and TLV set by OSHA and NIOSH.   Website: http://inspectapedia.com/hazmat/CO2_Exposure_Limits.htm

5 Healthy Schools Network, Inc. 2012. Parent’s Guide to School Indoor Air Quality. Journal Code: APR2013.

Website: http://www.eric.ed.gov/contentdelivery/servlet/ERICServlet?accno=ED541345

6 Sundersingh, David and David W. Bearg. 2003. Indoor Air Quality in Schools (IQA): The Importance of Monitoring Carbon Dioxide Levels. Publication code: RIEMAY2004.

Website: http://www.eric.ed.gov/contentdelivery/servlet/ERICServlet?accno=ED480549

7 Wiley, Robert. 2003. My School Makes Me Sick: Cheap Solutions to Environmental Problems in Schools. Journal Code: RIEAPR2004

Website: http://www.eric.ed.gov/contentdelivery/servlet/ERICServlet?accno=ED480106

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A SHIFT TO HEART-CENTERED CONSCIOUNESS

heart with wings

A few definitions are in order so we are all moving forward with the same flow of thoughts. Changes in our awareness, behavior, physical appearance, lifestyles, food choices, and genetic composition that occur within one life-time is termed adaptation. The changes that are carried on through your reproductive success over one or more generations is referred to as evolution. Co-adaptation or co-evolution are the same progressions already defined, yet, involves a concerted dance of two or more species interacting and blessing the future generations with traits that meets the best interest of the entire community or ecosystem. These are the processes that occur between the grand diversity of species in the natural world.

Humans are a species that are included in this change over-time development of traits. It is proposed that the early humans developed traits that involved the use of tools, to stand more erect, tame wild animals, and develop a complex economic system. Minds became very complex with processing information, analyzing subject matter, debating best strategies, and, even, dominating the planet. The question is, “Can humans become anymore perfect?”. Or, “Can humans evolve to be any more self-centered?”.

The mind is the traditional center of human consciousness. Mind tends to be the masculine center of directing activities, using a logical series of processing information, including past experience into the understanding of a situation. In addition, fear drives humans to seek protection from perceived harm, cradling possessions, and fighting for the dominion of land and resources. It is this mind-centered consciousness that has positioned humans in a place of incredible vulnerability since the analytical debate is unable to recognize all the variables that may impact an outcome or result.

The entire world ecosystem functions through cause-and-effect feedback loops that compounds the outcome in relation to the input at each cyclic stage to produce an outcome. One error in calculation can throw the system into a tizzy. For example; the erroneous calculations of the impacts from the tremendous amounts of greenhouse gases being released into the atmosphere, hence Climate Change.

It is being proposed that humans are adapting faster than any time in history (1). The new, evolutionary path is towards heart-centered consciousness. The heart embodies the feminine traits of intuition, knowing, compassion, and love. The heart proves to be a grounding center for your intelligent conscious awareness. The Institute of HeartMath reveals the heart as a sophisticated center capable of receiving and processing complex information to influence your perception, decisions, and other functions (2). The science of neurocardiology provides evidence that the heart has a “little brain” able to learn, remember, feel, sense, (2) and send meaningful messages to a compliant brain that impacts behavior (4). The heart’s magnetic field has been measured to extend several feet beyond the physical body and is 5,000 times stronger than the brain’s magnetic field (3).

In unison, the heart interacts with the brain to facilitate the processing of your thoughts and emotions. Centering on the heart’s rhythm of love and appreciation stabilizes blood pressure and breathing, providing you with a sense of peace. Consciously living from the heart lets you realize spontaneous feelings of gratitude, compassion, understanding, and goodwill. A peaceful, heart-centered awareness results in greater emotional stability and improved mental functioning, positioning you to take personal responsibility to achieve your highest dreams. Positioning and wakeful practice allows you to direct your energies to a heart-centered consciousness for improved well-being. You may realize an established heart-centered awareness with a loved one or pet as you experience a sense of peace, as joy reaches beyond your physical being.

It may be the transition to a heart-centered consciousness that is needed to direct the people towards a sustainable world. We each have the choice to expand our awareness to embody peace and harmony in our life.

Scheduled Event: Join us on Sunday, November 30, 2014, where I have been invited to give a talk about “A Shift To Heart Centered Consciousness” at Unity of Fayetteville: A Center for Conscious Living. The service begins at 10:30 am Central time and will be followed by a pot-luck supper. Please join us if you are in the area. I can promise a wholesome experience that will enlighten your spirit. 4880 W. Wedington Drive, Fayetteville, Arkansas  www.unityfay.org

Abundant Blessings,

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

REFERENCES

1 Hawks, John, Eric T. Wang, Gregory M. Cochran, Henry C. Harpending, and Robert K. Moyzis. 2007. Recent acceleration of human adaptive evolution. Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences of the United States of America. Vol. 104:52. Pgs. 20753-20758.

2 Madurasinghe, Lakshman. 2008. Neurocardiology: The Brain in the Heart. (Online) http://www. http://madurasinghe.blogspot.com/

3 McCraty, Rollin and Dana Tomasino. 2004. Heart Rhythm Coherence Feedback. Rept. Boulder Creek: HeartMath Research Center.

4 Paulson, Steve, Richard Davidson, Amishi Jha, and Jon Kabat-Zinn. 2013. Becoming conscious: the science of mindfulness. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. Vol. 1303:1. Pgs. 87-104.

FOOD SECURITY AT RISK DUE TO CLIMATE CHANGE

Lake Oroville reservior

I find myself in a bit of a tizzy about how to phrase this blog about the potential threat to food security as a result of climate change induced droughts. Shall I play the “everything is beautiful and perfect game” that is the norm for smoke-and-mirrors corporate business interests? Or shall I move with integrity and transparency while voicing my environmental science expertise? Well, is appears to be obvious that the best strategy is to move forward with the facts and plead with the public to assume their responsibility as environmental stewards to help “save the world” from ourselves. A well informed community has the ability to mobilize their resources to make a difference with conserving water usage. For example; transforming a high maintenance, water guzzling lawn to a xeriscape yard filled with native species of plants spiced with some food crops.

The over 400,000 people marched in New York City as a sign of the growing numbers that recognize Climate Change is real, undeniably. One of the major impacts from this 20th century environmental phenomenon is drought conditions that are plaguing the southwestern United States. The Ogallala Aquifer is not being replenished as large amounts of water is being sucked out of the ground. Many man-made reservoirs in California and Nevada are shrinking while water serves to provide for the needs of people.   A large amount of water is used to irrigate large tracks of agricultural land in attempts to feed the exponentially growing population. California leads and Texas comes in second as the major suppliers of agricultural crops in the country (1). The monumental “Red Flag” is our food security is at risk.

Yes, it is best that everyone says it out loud, “Climate Change is Real”. Greenhouse gases, particulate matter, and dust are wafting into the skies. These gases and particulates act as a nucleus for water molecules to attach and be held in the atmosphere. In urban environments, fresh water is been mixed with pollution and sewage, burdening the municipalities to purify the liquid. Drainage systems and non-permeable surfaces channel rain water towards the oceans. Perhaps some strategic water management innovative designs are in order? Redesigning our infrastructure using bio-inspired techniques offer a first step to effectively manage water.

Natural systems have managed and stored water for centuries. The Ogallala Aquifer is a perfect example of an underground water storage ecosystem. The High Plains aquifer encompasses 174,000 square miles beneath eight states, from South Dakota to Texas (2). Sixty percent in the waters decline has occurred to satisfy the irrigation and personal needs of Texans and food consumers. A Kansas study estimated that this magnificent aquifer may run dry within 50 years. The Texas Center for Geospatial Technology estimates some Texas counties may only have 15 years left of usable water supplies from this ecosystem. A major problem is the amount of water that is withdrawn is not being monitored so it is difficult to measure the impacts from water usage.

California and Nevada used a traditional storage strategy to manage water by constructing a dam and creating a reservoir. This strategy may not be a viable management strategy due to the large amount of water surface area that is exposed to evaporation. You may be impacted by the pictures of California’s (CA) chronic drought conditions that have impacted Lake Oroville, reduced to 32% capacity, and the CA Sacramento County, Folsom Lake reservoir, only filled to 40% capacity (5). A major challenge faces water managers in relation to Nevada’s Lake Mead. It is hoped to satisfy water needs through 2015 before sounding the alarm of a key shortage declaration (3). Lake Mead’s water is used to satisfy the needs of 40 million people and the cities of Las Vegas, Phoenix, and Los Angeles. The reservoir is about 39% filled to capacity and is located at 1,082 feet above sea level.

Water is needed to irrigate our agricultural crops. Agribusiness is built around large tracks of land where only one plant crop is grown, monocropping. Climate change greenhouse gases are released from the combustion engine equipment required to manage the tasks needed to sow the seeds, apply chemical, and harvest the crops. The transportation industry is needed to deliver the food products to the consumer. It is ironic that the agribusiness industry is dependent upon the very technology that is destroying the success of the business due to contributing to Climate Change. The main indicator of economic growth increased productivity (4). Increased productivity requires increased irrigation needs. Innovation is needed to combat the challenges facing the food production and supply process.

It is essential that the public be well informed of the environmental and agricultural challenges facing the world. Once informed then we all may collaborate and play a part in creating solutions for a sustainable world. Climate change is a phenomenon that has developed over a two hundred year period of cause-and-effect feedback loops. So the solutions must be diverse and involve many different components of our lifestyles and living environment. Water management, re-designing our living environment, and making changes in our lifestyles are a few strategies that will provide food security for the people. Assuming environmental steward lifestyles is empowering as we realize we can make a difference in the world and provide solutions to 21st century challenges.

Footnote: I am proposing an Edible Garden Challenge. You may view my video at https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=43jU5HJNU_w Go to www.jazzyeco.com to contact me and add your name to the growing list of Environmental Stewards. If I do not respond within 48 hours then facebook me at http://www.facebook.com/elizabeth.armstrong.3745

Have a great day,

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

1 Economic Post. http://econpost.com/industry/agriculture-sector-top-10-states-gdp

2 Brambila, Nicole C. 2014. http://cjonline.com/news/2014-08-12/ogallala-aquifers-dramatic-drying-sows-deep-concerns-high-plains-agriculture

3 Ritter, Ken. 2014. http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2014/07/09/lake-mead-water-levels_n_5568734.html

4 United States Department of Agriculture. http://www.ers.usda.gov/data-products/agricultural-productivity-in-the-us.aspx

5 http://www.mnn.com/earth-matters/wilderness-resources/blogs/how-extensive-is-californias-drought-compare-the-photos?utm_source=huffingtonpost.com&utm_medium=referral&utm_campaign=pubexchange_article

FOLLOW THE LEEDER

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My ultimate goals are to protect the environment and empower people to achieve their potential. The LEED, green building classification system sets priorities on healthy impacts for environment and humans. LEED stands for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design performing buildings. Picture yourself at work where you have natural lighting, a view of nature, and in control of your own, localized temperature and ventilation system. There are outdoor tables and chairs in a park like atmosphere and a kitchen area that is stocked with healthy food choices. These are a few of amenities that harbor green space and provide for your well-being in LEED certified buildings.

The United States Green Building Council transformed the building market in 1999 with the creation of the LEED industry. The leaders in business are proving to be successful by aligning with this green industry. Greenbiz discovered that Fortune 100 companies in California (100%) and Fortune 100 companies across the country (88%) have LEED in their portfolios. Green features are added to over 25% of United States construction projects (sustainability.about.com). Buildings are the foundation of a sustainable built environment. Job opportunities are abundant in this work sector for those willing to become educated as an accredited professional.

A LEED building is branded by the total amount of recognized credits to achieve Certified, Silver, Gold, or Platinum classification. Credits are organized into workable categories; such as water, energy, materials, and indoor environmental quality. There is building prestige for location and its linkage to natural products and services, related businesses, and features to satisfy human comforts. The actual conditions of the site is also placed in its own classification. Efficient use and recycling of resources provides a boost in credits. Engaging the mind in creative endeavors and inspired empowerment offer a benefit in the innovation category. Your team may even find the next “best strategy” offering a life time of credibility and job security. Achieving accreditation results in the retention of high quality tenants and greater resale values.

A rating system prerequisite is to determine the type of building that will be remodeled or constructed. Is it going to be a new or renovated building or school; the development of interior or shell; or perhaps a neighborhood enhancement project? Will the building be used for commercial, retail, or healthcare activities? The building may be an existing structure or developed for the maximum comforts in a home. The major strategy is to design for maximum performance. Choose your need and optimize your strategy.

Cost and benefit ratios are a major concern with any construction or remodel project. It is difficult to outlay the before and after benefits from a newly constructed building. Although, a 19 year old, 11,840 square foot commercial building remodel project yielded a reduction in energy by 75% and water use by 90%. Consider taking your energy or water bill and multiplying the total by .75 or .90 to find your monthly savings. In essence the project will pay for itself within a short period and then you are able to experience low utility payments for a life time. In San Jose, California, 64 energy projects realized a simple payback of 9.5 months with a return on investment of 121%, including rebates and incentives (Retrofitting office buildings to be green and energy efficient, ISBN 978-0-87420-133-8).

The movement is growing to place value on our precious environment and on people. Our precious Mother Earth is expressing volatile environmental conditions through climate changing conditions, unprocessed pollution, and mass extinction. Rates of cancer and other health issues are plaguing the human population. Leadership in Energy and Environmental Development performing buildings are designed to have a small environmental footprint and improve your well-being. An environmental stewardship lifestyle empowers you to be part of the creation of a world that is livable and resilient to 20th century challenges by going green. Jump in and enjoy the sustainable ride.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

Share the Wealth Found in Your Niche

niche

Writing is an opportunity to radiate a special part of your multi-faceted self, your niche. Each segment gifts you with an infinite amount of knowing embraced by your spirit. The key is to choose which asset to shine upon the World.

Your niche is your total self. How you have innately responded to experiences, developed your areas of interests, design your lifestyle, function as you walk your path, and interact with other living and non-living features of your environment are facets that defines your interface with the Universal puzzle. Each faceted plane houses a wealth of diamonds that may be shared with others.

Your spirit is ever present in the knowing as you polish your gem. It is like a sacred friend that nudges you with joy, excitement, creativity, passion, and inquiry. The inner knowing directs your path as a river carries your drift. You are eager to inquire, grow and be transformed by the experience as you polish your topic.

Your offerings await their release through the power of words. Understand your niche to hear the calling of an infinite amount of material. Choosing the time to clear your mind, embrace the knowing within the total self, and experience the gratitude allows you to connect with the riches you have to share. Enjoy the journey while expressing your interests.

Shine the aspects of your unique self upon the World with a player of words. Your spirit partners to guide the experience. Be open to the calling of treasures discovered in how your unique self meshes with the Universe. Your beacon of light will touch the spirit of others that are ready to find your message.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

SPIRITUAL CONNECTION WITH A WOLF

wolves

Wrapped in blankets during the pre-dawn hours, I was protected from the frozen temperatures as I sat on a balcony four feet off the ground. Only my nose and eyes were exposed to the chilling air. The quiet, stillness welcomed my meditative thoughts as I peered out into the night at the dormant forest. The covering of snow illuminated the landscape as the full moon reflected the sun’s radiant energy upon the Earth. It was as though I had been blessed to witness an environment seldom viewed without the patience to bask in the wonder found in nature.

A sound caught my attention as I looked out into the darkness. The moment came when a pack of majestic wolves drew near and meandered down the path. Eight creatures gracefully moved just below my perch as I stopped my breath in magical grander. The powerful pride quietly moved down the road that was within feet of where I sat motionless. Thoughts of gratitude filled my soul as they passed. The last wolf froze when it caught sight of my released breath. Our eyes met. For a few seconds, this magnificent creature and I became one, sharing the same frozen environment, with a sense of mutual respect. This gentle member of the pack moved on to rejoin the community.

It is evident that we share this precious planet with a diversity of life forms. Each species has its own niche that defines their role in a functioning World ecosystem. This youtube video aptly describes the incredible services provided by this keystone species, the wolf.

How Wolves Change the Course of the Rivers in Yellowstone National Park – enjoy the video

Abundant Blessings,

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

NATURAL GREEN SPACE IMPACTS YOUR MENTAL HEALTH

urban greenspace

The word cognitive holds the position of being the 22nd most popular word on Merriam-Webster.com. General meanings linked to this admired word are related to your mental health. Questioning minds are finding that a change in scenery from urban development to lush, green ecosystems gifts you with improved mental health. Diving deeper into the impacts of green space on mental abilities offers you a well-deserved reason to refresh your soul with regular treatments of natures’ remedies granted through a multi-sensational nature experience.

Cognitive relates to the diversity of processes that occurs within your mental abilities; such as thinking, understanding, learning, and remembering (5). Your skills include perception, memory, judgment and reasoning. Evaluating, problem solving, comprehension, and decision making are also terms included in your mental abilities (8). These characteristics relate to mental health and well-being as you realize your powers, respond to stress, work productively, and contribute to your community. Enriching your life with nature improves your mental health. Richard Louv uses the term “nature-deficit disorder” as a negative condition relating to depression in children that do not experience nature on a regular basis (1). Up to 12% of burgeoning global diseases result from mental and behavioral disorders.

The minds ability to process information and dictate behavior is guided by your environment (9). Quality mental health is impaired by artificial, built ecosystems (4). As our landscape is developing into human-made urban concrete and buildings then cognitive functioning and mental health trends are shifting. Your minds ability to remember, concentrate, remain focused, act impulsively, and define your moods are impacted by your environmental experiencing (2). Cities tend to have high concentrations of pollution and retain massive amounts of heat. Up to 57% of tested children had brain lesions when exposed to conditions found in highly polluted cities and hospital admissions for dementia and senility increased during heat-waves (7). Natural ecosystems bless humanity by cleaning up pollution, relieve the impacts from heat-island effect, and improve cognitive performance.

Resilience and recovery to stress improve your ability to concentrate when exposed to green space. The trees’ green lush regalia filters the air of impurities. Liquid water is changed to vapor while absorbing heat as leaves transpire this vital resource. The green canopies shade the understory and absorb heat to provide respite from the sun’s radiant energy. Attention Restoration Theory enlightens you to provide relief from your focused, directed attention to task by embracing involuntary fascination of birds and moving leaves. A multi-sensory awareness includes capturing the flowers fragrance, hearing the insects’ songs, and experiencing the movement found in air (1). Viewing natures’ beauty in advance of experiencing stress gifts you with a higher recovery and resilience to life’s pressures (3). Spice your experience with physical activity in natural environments to improve your mental health (6).

Your cognitive mental state is characterized by your ability to think, understand, perceive, and comprehend your environment. The landscape is continually being transformed from natural ecosystems to artificial, human built cities. As a result, your optimum mental health may be weakened. Relief may be found by dedicating time to experience and moving around in natural settings. Shifting your attention towards random events issues forth an invitation to improve the health of your mental state.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

References

1 Bolen, Anne. 2012. Healing Gardens. National Wildlife. Vol. 50:2.

2 Bratman, Gregory N., J. Paul Hamilton, and Gretchen C. Daily. 2012. The impacts of nature experience on human cognitive function and mental health. Annals of the New York Academy of Sciences. Vol. 1249. Pgs. 118-136.

3 Brown, Daniel K., Jo L. Barton, and Valerie F. Gladwell. 2013. Viewing Nature Scenes Positively Affects Recovery of Autonomic Function Following Acute-Mental Stress. Environmental Science & Technology. Vol. 47:11. Pgs. 5562-5569.

4 Evans, GW. 2003. The built environment and mental health. Journal of Urban Health: Bulletin Of The New York Academy Of Medicine. Vol. 80. Pgs. 536-555.

5 Merriam-Webster: An Encyclopaedia Britannica Company. http://www.erriam-webster.com/dictionary/cognitive

6 Mitchell, Richard. 2013. Is physical activity in natural environments better for mental health than physical activity in other environments? Social Science & Medicine. Vol. 91. Pgs. 130-134.

7 United States Environmental Protection Agency. 2013. Eco-Health Relationship Browser. http://www.epa.gov/research/healthscience/browser/index.html

8 Wikipeida: The Free Encylopedia. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Cognition

9 Zurich, ETH. 2009. Epigenetics: DNA Isn’t Everything. http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2009/04/090412081315.htm

DETERMINATION AND FAITH CARRIES ME TO MY BIG MISSION

sustainable

My dream is to build a Sustainable Community to help at-risk women, educate the public on green lifestyles, support business development, and manage a wild-life sanctuary. The Community Business Plan was divinely inspired when I was shocked by the realization of challenges faced by woman as I lived below poverty. Being a smart woman and an environmentalist were roadblocks to my success. Environmentalist were considered to be terrorists and my Ph.D. and expertise was in Environmental Science. Determined to serve with my blessings, Align With The Wild non-fiction was born.

The Great Depression and Great Recession were two economic downturns that alerts us to an unstable financial infrastructure. The Mckinney report states “women have been a growing factor in the success of the US economy since the 1970s”. Yet according to Women in America: Indicators of Social and Economic Well-Being, “women are the most likely to be in poverty than men”. Green Biz found 88 to 100 percent of Fortune 100 businesses are trending towards green portfolios. Mass extinctions are eliminating the natural ecosystems necessary for human survival. The sustainable community model provide perfect solutions to catalyze us towards a sustainable world.

It took me to live in poverty to realize the challenges faced by women. I created and read affirmations as I was determined to break down roadblocks. My days were filled with strategies for success; such as job searches, networking, and attending workshops. An opportunity to attend the Women’s Initiative business plan course blossomed into my completed business plan. A full time job and green courses filled my time as I defied my limits. Success was my goal and faith was my support.

My love of work was appreciated when I was a waitress. Although, I became too smart for my britches as I moved up the academic ladder. My love for nature and wildlife blessed me with my degrees from the University of Arkansas. Environmentalists were not popular since some tree-huggers took extremes to protect biodiversity. Spirit guided me to put my knowledge into words as Align With The Wild became my big business card. A predominantly female dominated author network guides my path in the process to generate the revenue to build the community.

Being open to opportunities, moving on a steady path for success, and recognizing my life’s calling gives me the abilities to move towards success. It is my gift to the world to be successful by creating a Sustainable Community. Challenges that cross my path provides me with a window to recognize what is needed to help women, businesses, and wildlife. Remaining positive, determined, and persistence directs my journey. The trip included writing a book to offer a roadmap for others to achieve their success.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

MIMIC NATURE’S CIRCULAR ECONOMY PRINCIPLE

New_1_circular economy

Change is constant. Natural ecosystems’ and organisms’ ability to adapt is a prime example of how change is the driving force for long term sustainable strategies. The United States financial infrastructure has its foundation in Gross National Product that is volatile, unstable, and embrace many stagnant limitations. Bio-inspiration and bio-mimicry are science and business institutions that observe nature to copy their designs and techniques. The Circular Economy Principle is a revolutionary trend that is riding on the changing winds to establish a course towards a resilient, adaptable model for long term stability. Creating a stable, well rooted economic foundation is a sound intention whether you manage a home environment or oversee a business ecosystem.

Single-celled organisms were severely challenged to survive on the vast, poisonous landscape in geological history. The life forms were opportunistic to find resources, adapted for success, and passed a lifetime of change to successive generations in the evolutionary process. An organized process of exchanging elements and forming collaborative relationships has resulted in the complex world that provides for your survival. The amazing functional interrelationships involves an exchange of resources that continuously cycles through communities specialized on utilizing the outputs from other communities. For example; a magnificent tree grows its roots into the ground. Old tissue is shed during the growth process. This tissue becomes a food source for fungi as they pass on the discarded elements that supports a rich community of underground populations. The community dynamics is cohesive in a sustainable design for success.

In contrast, humans have created an infrastructure where the Great Depression and Great Recession are testimonies to an unstable, volatile system. Outlined by the Gross National Product (GNP), success is determined by the final goods and services produced in a one-year period. Success and growth are dependent upon creating more goods and services and increasing the population numbers so more people can purchase the increasing number of products. Goods are generated by harvesting materials that are manufactured and transported to distribution venues. At the end of life, the products become waste and pollution while being discarded or burned. This linear, one-way flow through system creates a stagnant pool of valuable elements and resources that houses an abundant source of wealth.

The Circular Economy Principle mimics natural systems with the premise that the output from any process serves as a resource for another community process. Strategically managing the flow of materials and resources is a testament from taking insights from living systems to develop a collaborative network of interrelationships. Re-purposing output eliminates the end of life waste and pollution to establish a ‘cradle-to-cradle’ resource cycling, man-made ecosystem. Embracing a non-linear, feedback-rich, and interdependent infrastructure cycles the very elements that fuels the survival of a diversity of life forms, businesses, and lifestyles. The San Francisco city managers recognized the value in organic wastes by requiring all residents to compost their organic material or pay a fine.

Natural ecosystems have survived on Earth for billions of years in a process of designing sustainable functioning ecosystems. A cycling of elements becomes a resource in a series of community interactions. Humans developed a linear, flow through of supply that ultimately depletes it reserves and creates a burgeoning accumulation of stationary wastes. The limited amount of space available on Earth is evidence of this folly of design. Recognizing the eloquent movement of value-based essentials through compartmentalized functioning ecosystems, the circular economy principle is a strategy for success. Adapting to a changing climate of feed-back loops provides an opportunity to accept nature’s qualities to redesign our lifestyles, businesses, and government. Embrace change and adapt for the development of a Sustainable World.

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

Bio-inspiration from nature – Valley Light

Natural environments have survived for billions of year on our precious planet and well before people have walked the Earth. Bio-inspiration is a phenomenon where people are inspired by natural processes. You have a very intimate relationship with your Environment. Being still and aware of the natural environment gives you insight into strategies for success. Here is a story called Valley Light that provided me with inspiration when I used multi-sensational awareness while observing nature.

valley

I awoke from a restful sleep well before dawn as I craved to experience the abundance found in the quiet, stillness of the night. The outdoor hot-tub beaconed me to enter into its warm as the inviting waters protected me from the frozen landscape. The valley was hidden in the darkness yet porch-lights noted the homesteads that were but a speck in the expansive terrain. There was peace, tranquility, and security cradling my spirit. My thoughts were carried away too understand the experiences of a lifetime of growth while I relaxed in my meditation.

The air was filled with moisture as tender dew drops condensed in the cold temperatures and caressed my cheeks. Faint sounds of distant wildlife echoed their movement. Rich musty smells allowed me to recognize that life still existed in the extreme conditions found in the chilled winter environment.

The morning signaled its arrival as a soft light slowly illuminated the sky from behind a distant mountain. A valley fog became visible with the coming of the dawn. There was a fine line separating the dark from the light that slowly moved down from the sky as the night transformed into the day. It amazed me to watch this extraordinary boundary creep down the mountain side that was positioned across the valley from the lights origin. This interface crossed my presence, and in the time used to issue a breath, my world was transformed.

The sounds of birds rejoiced the arrival of the sun that dissolved the mist and warmed the air. A light wind moved throughout the trees to awaken the living. The orchestrated sounds of roosters announced the coming of the day. I became aware that in a moments time my life may be transformed when I am still and active my senses to greet the blessings that cross path.

Enjoy Your Week,

Elizabeth Armstrong, Ph.D.

http://www.jazzyeco.com

 

Sustainable, Green Heart-Centered Natural Awareness Gifts You with Increased Wealth and Greater Health