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Where to from here

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Since this blog I dove deep into the food system socio-political context.  The more I find out the more I see the issues of the world are systemic but also within each of us.  I have tried to unpack, understand and live the idea of sovereignty within my food system but also recognising that the food system is so inherently linked with every other system.  And so I unpack my consumption within the economical ecological reality.  My work is very broad and I have begun to slowly put it together on an online platform at – it is loose and not really coherent but I’m figuring out.  It’s mostly so I can begin to understand what it is I do, or at least affirm it on a regular basis.  If you’re interested please follow the link and perhaps help me understand what it is I do.  I know that I’m looking for tangible solutions to reform the inequalities we face and I know that it is at the cultural level that we see the greatest change.

Thank you, Shukran, Gangans, Dankie,

Zayaan Khan


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Green Building Council of South Africa

In a few days time, the Green Building Council of South Africa (GBCSA) will be holding their 4th annual GBCSA Convention and Exhibition.  It must be said that since the inception of the GBCSA, the building industry has changed its standards to incorporate “green building” (which is “a building which is energy-efficient, resource efficient and environmentally responsible – it incorporates design, construction and operational practices that significantly reduce or eliminate the negative impact of development on the environment and occupants”, as the council’s website puts it). 

This convention is especially interesting as there will be speakers and courses to attend, from topics like “Climatically appropriate design”, to “Biomimicry” and “Greening existing buildings”.  Of particular interest to me, is the Green Roofs course which I was hoping to attend, well also the talk about Food Security and absolutely the Introduction to Biomimicry.  I have issues with wanting to know everything which doesn’t always work out.

I will be speaking on Thursday, October 27th, (very few days time) with Sidonie Carpenter at the Green Roofs talk as part of the convention’s programme.  I am very honoured to be slotted in with Sidonie, her scope, work and knowledge of the industry globally is admirable.  I am feeling a little bit out of my league to be amongst such industry giants truthfully but I figured, probably as much as the council has figured, I have a lot to say and the years and sweat and toil of research and work deserves to be broadcast.  It is of the utmost importance that green roofing needs to happen, by anyone and everyone who can, it cannot be exclusive, and I will push that fact. 

Finally, it’s funny how this post  follows the one before, I mean even my skype name has “green” in it.  I suppose I don’t like the hype that’s attached itself to these words, some of it has become hysteria even.  We should all calm down.  Too much green in the environment means an influx of water anyways, green in the Karoo = good in winter, green on the golf course = bad always. 

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Cracked-shell Tortoises

I never knew tortoises could survive broken shells.  This is not the best photograph but it was the best I could manage as I was running around the nursery.  So apparently the story goes that this tortoise was picked up by an eagle one day and was not dropped from a high enough height (as the eagle should have) so the shell was cracked but not enough for the eagle to feast.  Who knows why the eagle didn’t go for a second round, point is this tortoise is now resident at Good Hope Gardens, cracked shell and all, survived for a few years just as it is.

Cracked-shell Chersina angulata

Turns out crows also do this, especially the white-necked raven. As Mark D. Anderson explains, “[they] regard padlopers as a delicacy”.  Of course there are many animals that prey on tortoise but not many birds who pick them up and drop them at height.  Tactics.

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More trees, less assholes

More Trees, Less Assholes

(No idea who took this photograph, let me know if you do.)

UPDATE:  Photo credit:  Mike Piscitelli for the Insight 2011 Campaign.


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