Archive for the ‘Think Green’ Category

Here it is Everyone!

TEAM Sweetwater has formed a unique partnership with CROW as our Chosen Charity for the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail Expedition: Floating on Tribal Tides!! CROW stands for- Clinic for the Rehabilitation Of Wildlife. They are one of the nations leading state-of-the-art wildlife rehabilitation clinics treating over 4,ooo injured, sick, and orphaned wildlife patients each year! They have clinicians, volunteers, first responders and a full time veterinarian that treat native wildlife with both Eastern and Western medicine. RIGHT NOW they are in need of our HELP!! As paddlers and outdoors people we need to give back to the waters and environment that we cherish sooo much!

That is why during our paddle expedition and on the blog/website we are asking for people to PLEASE donate to the link to the right! Anything will help and it does not have to be monetary- call them and see what supplies they might need or just tell someone about our cause! The more people that know about CROW- the more kindness/donations will FLOW!!

Which brings us to one more point to ponder before we end this post: Did TEAM Sweetwater aka Jeff and Sean choose CROW? Or did CROW and some un-forseen native spirits/force choose TEAM Sweetwater to deliver the message of the wildlife that was and ARE STILL SO IMPORTANT to the once Great Calusa Nation and the area surrounding what is now the Great Calusa Blueway Paddling Trail? Jeff and Sean would like to think WE are the Chosen Ones! PLEASE-PLEASE-PLEASE DONATE TO THE CAUSE OR HELP US GET THE MESSAGE OUT!


On June 23 2010 I wrote Oil…not in my backyard  “What will history books say about the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico exploding then sinking on April 20, 2010? How did the sinking of this oil rig and its ># month long oil fissure release > ###,###,### barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico?  The alarm clock is going off for all of us.  We are all culpably involved in the reason why the Gulf of Mexico is contaminated with oil.”

Sometimes I think that because money motivates all things perceived of as important, we are doomed to loose the things that are essential to life.  Below are two articles that the Surfrider Foundation collected.  I guess water, oil, and money are strange bedfellows.  The desire for more money decreases the need for water testing and increases the need for offshore oil drilling.

Florida has world class beaches and our unspoiled island sanctuaries are unique attractions.  What money cannot create is essential to life.  Our mission should be focused on saving wildlife through compassion, care, and education.  But fear of loosing money appears to be stronger than the fear of loosing nature.  –  Jeff


“The Florida Department of Health plans to quit testing ocean water for bacteria at 45 beaches statewide, to reduce spending. Beaches with fewer problems or low traffic will get axed from the program, which currently tests water quality at 304 beaches. The remaining sites will only be tested every other week. In addition to other cuts and cutbacks, Florida’s Department of Health will test only for enterococcus and won’t test for fecal coliform — which could also lead to fewer advisories being issued.”   READ MORE


“ALEC has pushed hard to fight any limits on offshore drilling, claiming “more energy-efficient drilling and production methods practically eliminate spills from offshore platforms.”  In less than shocking news, a little more than a year after its negligence led to the despoilment of the Gulf of Mexico, oil giant B.P. is funding a right-wing lobbying group that opposes the regulation of offshore drilling.The American Legislative Exchange Council (ALEC) is a powerful corporate front group that allows big corporations to help write legislation that it then delivers to state legislators across the country. ALEC is currently holding its annual conference in New Orleans, and it has been revealed that B.P., Exxon Mobil, Chevron and Shell are just a few of the many corporate funders behind ALEC.”   READ MORE

Toxic Sludge

Posted: January 14, 2011 by Jeff Fabiszewski in Giving Back, Think Green

Last night Sean and I met with Russell and Ron at The Brew Garden.  It was a successful evening and we covered a lot of material.  But this post is not about the plans on our future paddle, the Sweetwater Symposium, the East Coast Canoe and Kayak Festival, or the Safety Class we are offering to our local MeetUp group.  This post is about a new brew.

I asked the bartender what the new tap beer was this month and she said “we just got ‘Toxic Sludge’ in…I don’t know anything about it…want to try it?”  I said yes and it was good.  It was so good that even Sean and Ron ordered a glass.  We were trying to figure out why it tasted so good.   It looked and smoothly flowed past my teeth like a stout but tasted like an IPA.  It had a lot of pine hop taste, a chocolate malty base, a tan stout like head, and a light burnt aroma.  No one at our table is a foodie or beer aficionado but we all thought that this new beer was a dark IPA but to our knowledge there is no brewery making a dark IPA.

Today I did a little research and discovered we were drinking not only a dark IPA but also that our beer drinking dollars were going to a non for profit cause.  Blue Point Brewing Company made and launched “Toxic Sludge” in August 2010 in response to the BP Oil Spill.   And 100% of the proceeds go to Tri-State Bird Rescue and Research for their “Spreading Our Wings” Capital Campaign.  There are only three disappointing things about this great thing that Blue Point is doing.

  1. The oil spill was the muse for this great tasting Dark IPA.
  2. It is very hard to find.
  3. They have made a limited batch and when it runs out it will be gone.

All I can say is  I hope two things happen.  I am going to try to find some 22 ounce bottles for a rainy day.  And  I hope that there are so many people enjoying this brew that Blue Point decides to make “Toxic Sludge” a permanent addition to their list of well crafted beers.  – Jeff

What will history books say about the Deepwater Horizon in the Gulf of Mexico exploding then sinking on April 20, 2010? How did the sinking of this oil rig and its ># month long oil fissure release > ###,###,### barrels of oil into the Gulf of Mexico?  The alarm clock is going off for all of us.  We are all culpably involved in the reason why the Gulf of Mexico is contaminated with oil.

Currently estimates put the leakage at between 35,000 to 60,000 barrels per day,  “The oil slick now covers an area of sea the size of Scotland ” BBC News  “Gulf of Mexico oil spill claims to be ‘paid quickly'” 15:41 GMT, Monday, 21 June 2010 16:41 UK

Judge blocks Gulf offshore drilling moratorium

Oil spill stories: the human impact of the Gulf of Mexico spill

NOAA Assists Gulf of Mexico Oil Spill Efforts – Updated Daily

Live chart progress of oil – link.

We are at a historical moment.  The oil still coming out of the floor of the Gulf of Mexico will change the face of our planet.  It will change the environment and every culture will change because of it.  It is because of our technological advances that humans are dependent on oil.  And history will make us accountable long after we turn to dust.

This is not one of my inspirational or motivational posts.  I actually dreaded writing it.  It is more like a rant due to the stress I feel and an attempt to deal with it.

As you read this think about all of the things you are currently coming into contact with that exist because of oil… Clothing, electronics, food, medical supplies, outdoor recreations, shelter, transportation, et cetera, all exist because of oil.  No one wants an oil-rig platform of their coast.  No one wants their backyard deemed uninhabitable.  Yet, due to our dependency, oil will continue to be pulled out of the Earth.

I see three possible outcomes

  1. Someone smarter than I creates / discovers an element that is renewable, biodegradable, and can be fashioned into all of the things that oil currently becomes.  New employments…clean waters…a Green age.  This maybe the best way the National Resources Defense Council, the Sierra Club and other types of environmental groups will change our culture with a collective goal.  I hope this is what type of future my son will inhabit.
  2. A revival of agrarian living could happen.  People move out of cities into small communities where they make everything that they need to live.  A back to nature movement… I do not know if I have the strength to live off the land and be 100% giving and receiving of my neighbors for survival.  I think our collective cultures have moved too far to ask people to live simply and to turn their back on modern conveniences, in essence, “to live deliberately”.  A Walden Age.
  3. There will be more oil spills to come making the waters red… life in the waters die… insects will feed on the dead… more people become unemployed… famine…   This idea comes from the multiple news sources I have read, from listening to politicians, seeing how a judge rules on an oil drilling ban, and accepting the reality of our consumer culture.  People are only focusing on, the short cuts made by the oil company, the talk of money to clean up the disaster, the need for transparency, who to quickly give money to, and if someone should go to jail.  There are very few people saying “we are all responsible”, instead everyone is divided and pointing fingers.  Moreover think of the number of oil platforms in the Gulf of Mexico that are working within the legal standards.  (And think of the number of oil drilling platforms throughout the world)  Thus another spill will happen again.  Icky, this would be a bad outcome.

Maybe Zager and Evans were onto something when they sang “In the Year 2525”

Maybe in the year 2525 the planet will see a new age that incorporates the best of 19th century American transcendentalism and today’s going green movements.

The hardest thing to accept is that my dependency on stuff has helped put oil into the Gulf of Mexico.  And one day my son will ask “Daddy why were people not smart enough to see the damage they were creating?”

The uncomfortable answer is we knew. And we did not want to make hard choices and accept the inconveniences of eliminating our dependency on oil in all of its forms.  We only focused on earning money to get more stuff to make ourselves happy.  Instead of being happy with what we have.

Well, I am going to go fly a kite, enjoy what I have,  take nothing for granted, try to spend my money on things that are not apart of the oil chain of dependence, and help with the cleanup when the oil hits our beaches (I could drive to the areas currently effected, but then I would be increasing my carbon foot print, my head hurts) – Jeff