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5 Surprising Ways People Are Coping During the Pandemic

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<p>”Blackstone investments have been linked with deforestation activities in Brazil,” wrote British local produce shop Buth Bharraigh in a tweet announcing they would stop selling Oatly products.</p><p>”I don’t want my money going to the destruction of the planet … just so that I can have a creamy coffee in the morning!” wrote <a href=”https://www.ecowatch.com/tag/sustainability” target=”_self”>sustainability</a> influencer Laura Young in Instagram and Twitter posts that were shared thousands of times.</p><p>They criticized Oatly for enabling Blackstone — an investment firm managing $564 billion (€478 billion) in assets — to greenwash climate-damaging investments. “Learn how we’re backing sustainable, plant-based alternatives to dairy with our investment in @oatly,” Blackstone wrote on its Instagram page.</p><p>The social media spat between a corporate giant, a “woke” food brand and disenchanted customers is part of a wider debate about the role of <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/oil-giants-face-shareholder-pressure-on-climate-emissions-greenhouse-gas-targets/a-48802418″ target=”_blank”>capital in fighting climate change</a>. It has grown more significant in the food sector as investors start to divest from the highly polluting <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/meat-production-coronavirus-farming-cattle/a-54381190″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>meat and dairy industries</a>, and consumers look for sustainable alternatives.</p>

<h3>Divesting From Deforestation</h3><p>Meat production is the biggest driver of tropical <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/mass-deforestation-how-trade-fells-trees-in-brazil-and-indonesia/a-48280649″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>deforestation</a>. Driven by demand for foods like burgers and milk, <a href=”https://www.ecowatch.com/tag/rainforests”>rainforests</a> are burned to create land for cattle ranches, and to grow soy that is then mostly fed to livestock.</p><p>Blackstone, which has invested billions of dollars in the fossil fuel sector, partly owns Hidrovias do Brasil, a Brazilian logistics company that was linked to deforestation in the Amazon rainforest by U.S. news organization The Intercept last year. A spokesperson for Blackstone told DW the deforestation claims were “completely false and wholly fabricated.”</p><p>Blackstone CEO Stephen Schwarzman is a major donor to U.S. President Donald Trump, a <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/trump-climate-change-denial-emissions-environment-germany-fake-heartland-seibt/a-52688933″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>climate-science denier</a> who has rolled back environmental regulations and brought the U.S. out of the 2015 Paris Agreement on climate change.</p>

<h3>’Systemic Risks'</h3><p>Pressured by customers, campaigners and policymakers, some food companies are starting to assess their own ecological footprints.</p><p>In 2018, McDonald’s pledged to clean its supply chains and cut its emissions. In July, Brazilian food processing giant Marfrig said it would remove deforestation from its production chain by the end of the decade.</p><p>Then, in September, JBS, the world’s biggest meat-processing company, said it would monitor its entire supply chain to cut out <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/european-nations-warn-brazil-over-amazon-deforestation/a-54954854″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>deforestation</a> by 2025. Its announcement came two months after investor Nordea Asset Management said it would divest holdings of about €40 million in the company because of a lack of engagement on environmental issues.</p><p>Last year, after fires devastated the <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/amazon-rainforest-fire-deforestation-mining-slash-and-burn-brazil/a-54486689″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>Amazon rainforest</a>, a group of 251 investors called for a reduction in deforestation, identifying its environmental impacts as “systemic risks” to their portfolios.</p><p>Biodiversity and climate change matter to agricultural markets at risk of extreme weather and environmentally conscious consumers, said Matt McLuckie, research director at Planet Tracker, a UK-based nonprofit that aims to redirect capital toward sustainable development. “The trends are not looking positive for these agricultural producers, particularly in the beef sector.”</p>

<h3>Alternative Sources of Protein</h3><p>The IPCC, the gold-standard on climate science, has said climate change could in part be slowed by switching to <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/vegan-meat-the-future-of-planet-saving-plant-based-eating/a-51054861″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>plant-based diets</a>, particularly in richer countries. This is where oat milk comes in.</p><p>Oatly, the biggest player in the alternative milk industry, is valued at $2 billion, and is considering an initial public offering that could push that up to $5 billion, Bloomberg News reported in September. For a business whose core product is made by mixing two cheap and readily available ingredients — oats and water — the Swedish food company founded in the 1990s has seen incredible growth since entering the U.S. market four years ago.</p><p>While campaigners have spent years pressuring the financial world to take their money out of dirty investments like fossil fuel companies, little attention has been paid to finance in the <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/food-sustainability-organic-discounter-cheap-environmental-costs-prices-factory-farming/a-54919142″ target=”_blank” rel=”noopener noreferrer”>agriculture sector</a>, which is responsible for about a quarter of greenhouse gas emissions.</p><p>Shareholders are also typically the ones pressuring companies they own to improve their environmental record, and not the other way around.</p><p>The backlash against Oatly’s partnership with Blackstone is fascinating because it’s “looking through the other end of the telescope,” said Daniel Firger, managing director at climate finance consultancy Great Circle Capital Advisors. “The target of so many people’s anger here is Blackstone, a private equity group. And private equity, as compared to other parts of the financial markets, has not really had as much scrutiny.”</p>

<h3>Diverting Capital to Climate Change</h3><p>By accepting a $200 million investment from a group led by Blackstone and including U.S. talk-show host Oprah Winfrey, musician Jay-Z and actor Natalie Portman, Oatly said it was diverting capital to sustainable causes. The returns Blackstone makes from the investment could inspire other private equity firms to green their portfolios, it said in a statement justifying its decision.</p><p>”We have to have a fundamental shift in basically everything we do: the way we eat, the way we move, the way we live,” Ashley Allen, chief sustainability officer at Oatly, told DW. “The only way to do that, in my mind, is to incentivize finance toward those solutions and disincentivize finance toward high-carbon, high-risk, high-polluting entities.”</p><p>Asked whether Oatly would set red lines on who could invest in it — for instance, fossil fuel companies — Allen said she wasn’t sure. “I haven’t been part of any discussions on that.”</p><p>Oatly is not the first ethical food brand to anger customers by accepting money from an investor with a poor environmental record. U.S. ice cream producer Ben and Jerry’s — which champions its commitment to social justice — was bought out in 2000 by Unilever, a global conglomerate that has come under fire from campaigners for deforestation and plastic pollution.</p><p>In recent years Unilever has begun to engage more with critics on environmental issues, threatening to sell off brands that do not contribute positively to society. But is still a major contributor to plastic pollution, for instance, responsible for more than 70,000 tons of plastic pollution a year, according to a report published in March by NGO Tearfund.</p><p>While it’s important for activists to draw attention to inconsistencies in investments, said Firger, the scale of the climate emergency means hundreds more companies like Oatly need to grow as fast as they possibly can. “I’m not one for purity tests. I feel like we don’t have time to waste.”</p>

<p><em>Reposted with permission from <a href=”https://www.dw.com/en/oatly-deforestation-dairy-brazil-blackstone-stephen-schwarzman-environment-climate-private-equity/a-55138702?maca=en-VAM_volltext_ecowatch-28485-html-copypaste” target=”_blank”>DW</a>.</em></p>

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Why CBD is a Great Partner for Any Wellness Routine

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Why CBD is a Great Partner for Any Wellness Routine

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In the midst of one of the most life-altering moments of the last fifty years, wellness has vaulted itself into the mindset of almost every individual and household. As the education around mental and physical health continues to expand, conversations around personal wellness have been at the forefront of almost every school, workplace, and community. This has led to the promotion of personal wellness routines that aim to support the physical and emotional aspects of one’s body and mind from day-to-day. Unfortunately, finding ways to positively contribute to one’s own wellness initiatives can be challenging. Fortunately, CBD might be a great tool for helping you do that.

What Even is Cannabidiol?

Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of over a hundred different chemical compounds (cannabinoids) found in the cannabis plant. When people hear that, they start to make a lot of preconceived judgments based on their previous associations with cannabis as a whole. Or, they limit CBD’s applications to those of a Delta 8 Vape Cartridge. But CBD is only a part of cannabis, and it likely doesn’t contribute to its more political elements. 

Based on a 2018 United Nations health report, researchers found that CBD did not produce or enhance the physiological effects associated with tetrahydrocannabinol, otherwise known as THC. In fact, the study described CBD’s effects in the experiments as being ‘placebo-like’ in nature. This means that the researchers were unable to find an identifiable effect produced by the substance amongst their team of health test subjects. Similarly, this report later went on to detail how CBD ranks very low in terms of abuse potential and very high in terms of tolerance. While further studies are still being conducted, this is extremely promising when it comes to commercial, personal, and medical applications. So, how does CBD positively influence a person’s wellness routines?

What Are the Benefits of CBD? Is it Safe?

What makes cannabidiol so special is its ability to interact with the endocannabinoid system (ECS) found in human beings. This system was discovered in the 1990s and posed a lot of questions about the potential of CBD as it related to human ingestion. The discovery proved that humans produced their own version of cannabinoids, called endocannabinoids, that interact with receptors in the brain. Scientists still aren’t fully clear on all of the functions and nuances of the ECS but do recognize that it plays a significant role in the regulation of a person’s mood, sleep, memory, appetite, and even fertility. These are arguably the five most important pillars that constitute a person’s general wellness.

The unofficial father of cannabinoid research, Dr. Raphael Mechoulam, has explored the uses of CBD and its precursors as tools for not only wellness but medicine. Both CBD and its other compounds have been shown to have antiepileptic properties. Unlike other antiepileptic cannabinoids, such as THC, CBD has been demonstrated to have little to no side effects when ingested. This directly juxtaposes THC, which can produce a ‘high’ as well as a myriad of other psychoactive and physiological effects. This is one of the many reasons why CBD has so much potential as an accessible form of therapeutic treatment. 

If you’re not convinced, just ask the U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA). The FDA, back in mid-2018, approved its first drug with an active ingredient derived from a cannabis plant, Epidiolex. Despite the murkiness of current U.S. CBD and cannabis regulations, the FDA couldn’t help but approve the drug due to the strength of its clinical trial results as an effective form of antiepileptic treatment. Obviously, reducing seizures isn’t the mainstay of most people’s wellness routines, but CBD and its precursors have shown to do much more than control epilepsy symptoms.

How Can CBD Contribute to Wellness?

In addition to regulating the symptoms of those with severe epilepsy, CBD also has the potential to treat other – more common – symptoms of various conditions and diseases, namely those of anxiety and depression. These are two of the most common and most crippling mental health afflictions in the world today. It doesn’t help that the symptoms of these mental conditions have been made worse by the pandemic as a whole. That’s one of the main reasons why CBD may make a great partner or supplement for a healthy wellness routine. 

Being able to manage one’s mental health is a crucial part of maintaining one’s personal wellness. That starts with investing in the necessary items, activities, and supplements that will help you live your best life. While CBD has proven to be a consistently safe product, it is always advised that one consult with a medical professional before integrating it into their wellness routine. If anything, medical consultation may help to identify additional ways to support your own mental and physical health.

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Why CBD is a Great Partner for Any Wellness Routine

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Cannabidiol, or CBD, is one of over a hundred different chemical compounds (cannabinoids) found in the cannabis plant. When people hear that, they … Checkout PrimeXBT
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Yo, Sativa, HELP!

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Visit our community site for vetted suppliers at http://theCBD.place. It’s time that this subject was given more internet exposure. We are here to discuss topics related to medical marijuana and our experiences using CBD. Please do not assume that anyone here is a medical professional.

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