Living Off Grid

The definition of offgrid is to be not connected to or served by publicly or privately managed utilities (such as electricity, gas, or water). Photographer Ed Gold lived alongside a small community who live on a Scottish peninsula which is either a 5 mile walk or a boat ride to reach. The photo story is reported on the BBC and is a really interesting view of how people choose to live off-grid.  BBCiWonder also explore this topic and wonder what you need and what costs are involved.

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British MP asked Justice Minister to reintroduce the Death Penalty

The MP John Hayes asked the justice secretary in a written request in Parliament to “make an assessment of the potential merits of bringing forward legislative proposals to reintroduce the death penalty to tackle violent crime”. The response from the justice minister Edward Argar was that the government “opposes the use of the death penalty in all circumstances and has no plans to reintroduce it”. Mr Argar also explained  that the UK is campaigning for the abolition of the death penalty globally, he said: “There is no evidence that capital punishment acts as a deterrent to violent crime. Furthermore, the reintroduction of the death penalty would bring with it the very real risk that some innocent people would die.”

Capital punishment ended in the UK in 1965. The last people to be hanged were Peter Allen and Gwynne Evans, who were executed for the murder of John West in Seaton, Cumberland.

This 10 minute video from BBC Teach is just for GCSE students as the content is for older teenagers, and shows you the arguments for and against the death penalty. Or you can read about it on BBC Bitesize. Below are some slides which give the basic arguments for and against having the death penalty (capital punishment) as a method of punishment:

non religious

christian against

muslim against

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muslims for

Eat less meat to cut carbon emissions

Scientists have said eat less meat to cut carbon emissions but the UK’s climate minister Claire Perry has told BBC News that it is not the government’s job to advise people on a climate-friendly diet. Friends of the Earth are not impressed at all. They think it is a dereliction of duty and that government ministers should show leadership on this difficult issue. Would you stop eating meat in an effort to help slow down climate change?

It is a shocking facts that raising animals for food produces more greenhouse gas emissions than all the cars, planes, and other forms of transportation combined. According to the Food and Agriculture Organization of the United Nations, carbon dioxide emissions from raising farmed animals make up about 15 percent of global human-induced emissions, with beef and milk production as the leading culprits.

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Experts say that our battle over climate change is going to have to get more personal.  This might involve:

  • driving smaller cars
  • walking and cycling more
  • flying less
  • buying less fast fashion
  • wearing a sweater in winter
  • eating less meat

There will need to be a cultural shift and they want governments support those messages to it will be an impossible task keeping the global temperature rise at 1.5C. Religious groups are already preaching to their supporters about how to act now on climate change. Operation Noah was set up in 2004 to provide a Christian response to the climate crisis. They work with all Christian denominations and support interfaith work on climate change. Their catch phrase is faith motivated, science informed and hope inspired.

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Washington state gets rid of Death Penalty

Now only 30 states in the USA still have the death penalty after Washington state’s Supreme Court said that it was “invalid because it is imposed in an arbitrary and racially biased manner. Given the manner in which it is imposed, the death penalty also fails to serve any legitimate penological goals.”

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There are numerous arguments for and arguments against the death penalty, most of which are centred around the 6 aims of punishment. Which side are you on?

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Follow chicken from the farm to the fryer

A short 10 minute documentary on the BBC showed chicken lover Hezron Springer how the fried chicken he eats travels from the farm to his local fried chicken restaurant. He’s shocked that chickens only live until 39 days old when they are killed for their meat.

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It is always good to know where your food is coming from, either from a health or ethical  view point

Have you heard of the ‘world’s largest humanitarian crisis’?

“Yemen is the world’s worst humanitarian crisis. As the conflict enters its fourth year, more than 22 million people – three-quarters of the population – need humanitarian aid and protection.” These are the words of the Secretary-General António Guterres at a conference in Geneva on 3rd April 2018. The UN is not mincing its words; this conflict is of serious concern.  Today CARE International has warned that Yemen only has enough food to sustain its population for two to three months if the country’s main port closed due to Saudi-led coalition attacks.
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How has Yemen ended up like this? What kind of country is it? The BBC has a country profile for Yemen that says it is in a state of political limbo. Since 2014 when Houthi rebels overran the capital, the country has been experiencing a civil war which prompted a Saudi-led coalition to intervene militarily as they feared Houthi’s would gain too much ground. So who is fighting who? Saudi Arabia and eight other mostly Sunni Arab states became involved in the civil war because they were worried that the Houthi were backed militarily by regional Shia power Iran. Added to the mix the mostly Sunni  coalition has received logistical and intelligence support from the US, UK and France. Hmm, it sounds rather messy. Oh and let’s not forget there are also attacks by al-Qaeda, and their rivals Islamic State group (IS) who have both taken advantage of the chaos by seizing territory in the south and carrying out deadly attacks. Perhaps the fact this is all so complicated partially explains why it hasn’t dominated the news as much as it should.

 

Didsbury Church explains its move to be fully inclusive

Watch a short video about Lizzie Lowe who four years ago aged only 14-year-old took her own life because she thought she wouldn’t be accepted as a gay Christian. And how her church called St James, in Didsbury, Manchester, has become an inclusive church  which embraces everyone, no matter the gender, race, disability or sexuality. You could say it’s a shame that a tragic loss of life was needed to make this change, but at least it’s happened and the inclusivity can help others feel welcomed and loved for who they are.

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