Lovers of our Earth’s biosphere are invited to copy and share, or print and give, these commemorative XOEarth Awards to your government officials, friends, businesses, customers, volunteers and employees to thank them for their environmental actions – either past or pledged.
These Fish XOEarth Awards have been dedicated to:
+ “Lep” the Fish
+ The Sierra Club – explore, enjoy, protect the planet
+ 350.org – take a stand, action is needed today
+ George Monbiot – Author, and journalist for Guardian. He has said: Only one of the many life support systems on which we depend – soils, aquifers, rainfall, ice, the pattern of winds and currents, pollinators, biological abundance and diversity – need fail for everything to slide. For example, when Arctic sea ice melts beyond a certain point, the positive feedbacks this triggers (such as darker water absorbing more heat, melting permafrost releasing methane, shifts in the polar vortex) could render runaway climate breakdown unstoppable. When the Younger Dryas period ended 11,600 years ago, Greenland ice cores reveal temperatures rising 10°C within a decade.
Two tasks need to be performed simultaneously: throwing ourselves at the possibility of averting collapse, as Extinction Rebellion is doing, slight though this possibility may appear. And preparing ourselves for the likely failure of these efforts, terrifying as this prospect is. Both tasks require a complete revision of our relationship with the living planet.
Because we cannot save ourselves without contesting oligarchic control, the fight for democracy and justice and the fight against environmental breakdown are one and the same. Do not allow those who have caused this crisis to define the limits of political action. Do not allow those whose magical thinking got us into this mess to tell us what can and cannot be done.
+ Sarah Hodgdon – Oversees the Sierra Club’s national campaigns, including Beyond Coal, Beyond Oil, and Our Wild America, as well as its political, outings, and partnerships programs with labor, environmental justice, and youth groups. To accomplish campaign and programmatic goals, Sarah manages the Sierra Club’s teams of lobbyists, organizers, and lawyers. She leads the staff diversity team and serves on the founding body of the Building Equity and Alignment (BEA) Initiative, which works to create a more inclusive, connective, and winning environmental movement.
In 2012, Diversity Journal named Sarah “A Woman Worth Watching” for her leadership role at the Sierra Club. Before coming to the Sierra Club, Sarah was executive director of Dogwood Alliance, a North Carolina-based forest-protection organization. She began her grassroots-organizing career with Green Corps and is one of four Green Corps graduates to have received the David Brower Alumni Achievement Award.
+ Alan Rusbridger – Principal at LMH Oxford. Ex-editor of the Guardian. Chair at Reuters Institute. Alan has said: There are trillions of dollars worth of fossil fuels currently underground which, for our safety, simply cannot be extracted and burned. All else is up for debate: that much is not. We need to keep [coal, natural gas and oil deposits] in the ground. The fight for change is also full of opportunity and optimism. The argument for a campaign to divest from the world’s most polluting companies is becoming an overwhelming one, on both moral and financial grounds.
As Archbishop Desmond Tutu puts it: “People of conscience need to break their ties with corporations financing the injustice of climate change”. Divestment serves to delegitimise the business models of companies that are using investors’ money to search for yet more coal, oil and gas that can’t safely be burned. It is a small but crucial step in the economic transition away from a global economy run on fossil fuels.
+ Tulsi Gabbard – Soldier. Veteran. Surfer. Member of Congress Rep. HI. She introduced H.R. 3671, the Off Fossil Fuels for a Better Future Act (OFF Act), which will put the United States on a pathway to replace fossil fuels with 100 percent clean energy generation and use by 2035.
This legislation eliminates tax giveaways to the fossil fuel industry, and provides support to transitioning workers who will be impacted by this generational change. She stands with Sunrise Movement, Ocasio, Food and Water & Progressive Democrats of America in supporting the Green New Deal.
Rep. Tulsi Gabbard’s bill builds on progress made in Hawai‘i and other states that have committed to address the climate change crisis head on and do everything possible to transition to a 100 percent clean energy economy. The OFF Act continues this progress and sets an ambitious timeline to cut carbon emissions by ending America’s reliance on fossil fuels by 2035 in order to avert some of the most devastating impacts of climate change. Transitioning to clean energy will stimulate our economy, support our working men and women, and protect our environment. It will increase our competitiveness by investing in clean energy technologies, jobs, and training programs. Additionally, it will improve the health and well-being of the American people and our planet from toxic pollutants, asthma and respiratory illnesses, and environmental degradation.
Fish are gill-bearing aquatic craniate animals that lack limbs with digits. Traditionally fish are rendered paraphyletic by excluding the tetrapods (i.e., the amphibians, reptiles, birds and mammals which all descended from within the same ancestry). Because in this manner the term “fish” is defined negatively as a paraphyletic group, it is not considered a formal taxonomic grouping in systematic biology, unless it is used in the cladistic sense, including tetrapods.
The earliest organisms that can be classified as fish were soft-bodied chordates that first appeared during the Cambrian period. Although they lacked a true spine, they possessed notochords which allowed them to be more agile than their invertebrate counterparts.
Most fish are ectothermic (“cold-blooded”), allowing their body temperatures to vary as ambient temperatures change.
Fish can communicate in their underwater environments through the use of acoustic communication. Acoustic communication in fish involves the transmission of acoustic signals from one individual of a species to another. The production of sounds as a means of communication among fish is most often used in the context of feeding, aggression or courtship behaviour. The sounds emitted by fish can vary depending on the species and stimulus involved.
Early fish from the fossil record are represented by a group of small, jawless, armored fish known as ostracoderms. Jawless fish lineages are mostly extinct.
The term “fish” most precisely describes any non-tetrapod craniate (i.e. an animal with a skull and in most cases a backbone) that has gills throughout life and whose limbs, if any, are in the shape of fins. Unlike groupings such as birds or mammals, fish are not a single clade but a paraphyletic collection of taxa, including hagfishes, lampreys, sharks and rays, ray-finned fish, coelacanths, and lungfish. As paraphyletic groups are no longer recognised in modern systematic biology, the use of the term “fish” as a biological group must be avoided.
A typical fish is ectothermic, has a streamlined body for rapid swimming, extracts oxygen from water using gills or uses an accessory breathing organ to breathe atmospheric oxygen, has two sets of paired fins, usually one or two (rarely three) dorsal fins, an anal fin, and a tail fin, has jaws, has skin that is usually covered with scales, and lays eggs.
Lungfish have paired lungs similar to those of tetrapods, gouramis have a structure called the labyrinth organ that performs a similar function, while many catfish, such as Corydoras extract oxygen via the intestine or stomach.
Fish range in size from the huge 16-metre (52 ft) whale shark to the tiny 8-millimetre (0.3 in) stout infantfish.
The skin of anguillid eels may absorb oxygen directly. The buccal cavity of the electric eel may breathe air. Catfish of the families Loricariidae, Callichthyidae, and Scoloplacidae absorb air through their digestive tracts. Lungfish, with the exception of the Australian lungfish, and bichirs have paired lungs similar to those of tetrapods and must surface to gulp fresh air through the mouth and pass spent air out through the gills. Gar and bowfin have a vascularized swim bladder that functions in the same way. Loaches, trahiras, and many catfish breathe by passing air through the gut. Mudskippers breathe by absorbing oxygen across the skin (similar to frogs).
Obligate air breathers, such as the African lungfish, must breathe air periodically or they suffocate.
Fish typically have quite small brains relative to body size compared with other vertebrates, typically one-fifteenth the brain mass of a similarly sized bird or mammal. However, some fish have relatively large brains, most notably mormyrids and sharks, which have brains about as massive relative to body weight as birds and marsupials.
Most fish possess highly developed sense organs. Nearly all daylight fish have color vision that is at least as good as a human’s (see vision in fishes). Many fish also have chemoreceptors that are responsible for extraordinary senses of taste and smell. Although they have ears, many fish may not hear very well. Most fish have sensitive receptors that form the lateral line system, which detects gentle currents and vibrations, and senses the motion of nearby fish and prey. Some fish, such as catfish and sharks, have the Ampullae of Lorenzini, organs that detect weak electric currents on the order of millivolt. Other fish, like the South American electric fishes Gymnotiformes, can produce weak electric currents, which they use in navigation and social communication.
Fish orient themselves using landmarks and may use mental maps based on multiple landmarks or symbols. Fish behavior in mazes reveals that they possess spatial memory and visual discrimination.
Fish eyes have a more spherical lens. Their retinas generally have both rods and cones (for scotopic and photopic vision), and most species have colour vision. Some fish can see ultraviolet and some can see polarized light.
Hearing is an important sensory system for most species of fish. Fish sense sound using their lateral lines and their ears.
Experiments done by William Tavolga provide evidence that fish have pain and fear responses. For instance, in Tavolga’s experiments, toadfish grunted when electrically shocked and over time they came to grunt at the mere sight of an electrode.
Some fish, like the California sheephead, are hermaphrodites, having both testes and ovaries either at different phases in their life cycle or, as in hamlets, have them simultaneously.
A few oviparous fish practice internal fertilization, with the male using some sort of intromittent organ to deliver sperm into the genital opening of the female, most notably the oviparous sharks, such as the horn shark, and oviparous rays, such as skates. In these cases, the male is equipped with a pair of modified pelvic fins known as claspers.
Some species of fish are viviparous. In such species the mother retains the eggs and nourishes the embryos. Typically, viviparous fish have a structure analogous to the placenta seen in mammals connecting the mother’s blood supply with that of the embryo. Examples of viviparous fish include the surf-perches, splitfins, and lemon shark. Some viviparous fish exhibit oophagy, in which the developing embryos eat other eggs produced by the mother.
Sounds as a means of communication among fish is most often used in the context of feeding, aggression, courtship behavior and stressful situations. Fish can produce either stridulatory sounds by moving components of the skeletal system and teeth, or can produce non-stridulatory sounds by manipulating specialized organs such as the swimbladder. Some of these sounds include clicks, growls, ‘boat whistles’, grunting and drumming.
Some species use cleaner fish to remove external parasites. The best known of these are the Bluestreak cleaner wrasses of the genus Labroides found on coral reefs in the Indian and Pacific oceans.
In many fish, much like the mammalian immune system, teleost erythrocytes, neutrophils and granulocytes are believed to reside in the spleen whereas lymphocytes are the major cell type found in the thymus. B and T lymphocytes bearing immunoglobulins and T cell receptors, respectively, are found in all jawed fishes.
The 2006 IUCN Red List names 1,173 fish species that are threatened with extinction.
Introduction of non-native species has occurred in many habitats. the introduction of Nile perch into Lake Victoria in the 1960s gradually exterminated the lake’s 500 endemic cichlid species.
Overall, about one-sixth of the world’s protein is estimated to be provided by fish.
Piranhas are shown in a similar light to sharks in films such as Piranha; however, contrary to popular belief, the red-bellied piranha is actually a generally timid scavenger species that is unlikely to harm humans.
Excerpts via Wikipedia https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Fish
350.org‘s and 350Action.org‘s crucial climate protection work that is helping save our biosphere’s climate — and therefore humankind and other species — we are honored to dedicate these World Climate Action Awards to 350.org and 350Action.org.
There’s heaps to like about 350.org work on “Climate-focused campaigns, projects and actions led from the bottom-up by people in 188 countries”, and that they say, “We believe in a safe climate and a better future — a just, prosperous, and equitable world built with the power of ordinary people.”
We also sooooo freaking [not fracking] love that 350.org peeps helped found and power up so many Climate Marches around the world!!
350 activists around the world say, “Join the Peoples Climate Movement in Washington, D.C. and across the country to stand up for our communities and climate. We resist. We build. We rise.”
And they say, “Everything we have struggled to move forward in the United States is in peril. Our loved ones feel under siege, and those in power in Washington are advancing a dark and dangerous vision of America that we know is untrue. To change everything, we need everyone.
Then there is the absolutely crucial Divest-Invest Pledge that 350.org calls on every peep and biz to sign.
This initiative states that, “We can have a huge impact collectively when we move our money from fossil fuels to climate solutions. With renewable energy becoming more competitive every day, we can promote a healthy planet and economic security by divesting from fossil fuels and reinvesting in solutions.”
Read and do sign the pledge at 350.org to make it real!!!!!
And zingy-thingy, ya gotta love 350Action.org‘s political arm that has the mission in the United States to initiate “Campaigns, projects and actions that will change climate politics for the better.”
Please donate to both 350.org‘s and 350Action.org‘s mighty fine projects, duhhh, today.
FYI,XOEarth.org’s founder Stele Ely, participates in 350.org events, has taken the Divest-Invest Pledge and will continue supporting 350.org’s work with his time and a money.
The Sierra Club.
The Sierra Club was founded by legendary conservationist John Muir in 1892. Since then the Sierra Club has become the nation’s largest and most influential grassroots environmental organization — with more than two million members and supporters.
As stated by the Sierra Club, “Our successes range from protecting millions of acres of wilderness to helping pass the Clean Air Act, Clean Water Act, and Endangered Species Act. More recently, we’ve made history by leading the charge to move away from the dirty fossil fuels that cause climate disruption and toward a clean energy economy.”
As our XOEarth fans know, we have numerous songs calling for the end of fossil fuel use. We are indebted to the Sierra Club’s major legal and activist work that has slowed down oil and gas extraction across the country.
That’s why we also love that the Sierra Club calls out, “Imagine a world with clean, abundant, affordable energy. One where climate disruption is a fading threat and American soldiers are never again deployed to defend oil fields. One where innovative green industries provide good jobs and supply 100 percent of our energy needs. Imagine a healthier America, with clean air and water, with pristine coasts and protected natural areas. A wealthier, more productive nation, whose leaders answer only to the citizens who elect them. This is America beyond oil.”
Our XOEarth songwriters have written two songs against coal mining. So we also applaud Sierra Club in their legal and grassroots work to stop coal mining. They say, “Coal is our country’s dirtiest energy source, from mining to burning to disposing of coal waste. Our campaign is uniting grassroots activists across the country to move America Beyond Coal.”
Support The Sierra Club at sierraclub.org.
XOEarth Award Printing TipsTo print these awards, first go to your browser’s file menu and then to print preview. Decide which page you want to print. Set the margins to zero. Increase the custom size to between 100% to 107% depending on your browser. Then print.
In the print preview window, there should be 4 designs per page – on two or more pages. If you don’t see 4 designs per page, un-maximize the browser window and then adjust the width of the browser window so that it is about 1/3 the width of your full screen. The webpage should look narrow. Open the print preview window again. Then print.
For more printing tips see XOEarth.org/printing-tips.
There are two kinds of XOEarth Awards – Fast and Slow. Slow XOEarth Awards have a place to write the name of the person being honored, the eco action they have taken, and the name of the presenter. Fast XOEarth Awards don’t need to be filled out.
To see more XOEarth environmental awards that you can copy and share, or print and give to others for their eco actions, go to XOEarth.org/Awards.