3rd Quarter ScrapESbook: My Environmental Science Journal

E: Society of Saint Vincent DePaul

For those of you who don't already know, The Society of St. Vincent de Paul is dedicated to feeding, clothing, housing and healing individuals and families in our community who have nowhere else to turn for help. As important, the organization provides meaningful opportunities for volunteers to serve their neighbors in need with love and compassion. Saint Vincent DePaul Society has been serving our community since 1946. Programs include services for the homeless, medical and dental care for the working poor, charity dining rooms that serve thousands each day, food boxes for hungry families, thrift stores throughout the region, a bridge housing shelter, and general assistance for individuals in need. They provide help for people's physical, mental, and spiritual needs. By doing this with care and respect, they show them that they matter and they are children of God.

You can serve those in need without being a part of the organization by donating your gently used items, which is what my family and I did. Right before Christmas, my family and I went through toys, clothes, children's books, etc. and separated them into two piles: one for things that could be donated, and one for things that could be thrown out. To our surprise, the donation pile was a lot larger than the garbage pile. We then called a local Saint Vincent DePaul center to have the items picked up (ticket pictured below). Knowing I helped families and people in need gave me a warm feeling inside. Aside from the fuzzy feeling I got, donating the items means they're being reused, cutting down on the resources needed to reproduce those items.

O: Latest on the Arctic: Good news and bad news from the Obama administration


I strongly disagree with Obama's decision to continue drilling in the Arctic, especially after saying he would leave 12 million acres untouched. With global warming and now the drilling, the poor Arctic animals will have nowhere else to go. Yes, we need the resources for our everyday lives, but the animals need their homes too.

The thing about this that bothers me the most is the fact that Obama knows of Shell's previous, disastrous drilling attempts and is giving them permission to drill anyway. If it were up to me, this would be the last place I would allow Shell to drill, given the touchy, harsh conditions and the greater chance of a devastating oil spill. The drilling alone destroys the animals' habitats so could you imagine what an oil spill would do? Also, an oil spill in this area would be even more difficult to clean up than one similar to the spill in the Gulf of Mexico. Obama needs to shut this project down and protect the fragile lives of these beautiful animals.

O: Bring Balance to the Bering Sea


I agree that something needs to be done to preserve our underwater canyons and the vast majority of sea life they hold. There are plenty of other spots for these companies to fish because like the article said, the canyons only make up a small percentage of the fishable area in the Bering Sea. Continuing to fish here will be the cause of too many marine extinctions, something that will greatly affect the earth in many ways. As a part of our Environmental Science Class, we did an activity that was meant to demonstrate the Tragedy of the Commons, something that will happen if we continue to fish in a marine-life hotspot like this.

Reading this article also made me think of this series on television called "Deadliest Catch." This show depicts the lives of men on various fishing vessels who all compete to bring in the heaviest load of crab each fishing season. I'm not sure if they do this fishing in the canyons of the Bering Sea, but what I do know is that as a kid, I absolutely loved the show. Now, however, I don't want to see it because of the damage it does to the population of sea life. Something needs to be done to stop the overfishing in the Bering Sea.