How I went from wanting an Electric Car, to building an Electric Bicycle by Karl Aldinger

This article and video is from ROSE member Karl Aldinger. Thanks Karl for sharing with us your journey of environmental action and how one person can take action and make a difference. Gene

How I went from wanting an Electric Car, to building an Electric Bicycle:
Like all of you, I’m constantly looking for the next way to reduce my impact on the planet, and move towards a sustainable future.  We purchased rooftop solar a while back, so an electric car was my next goal.  But as a sports car nut, I had a really hard time deciding on a electric car that wasn’t too big of a compromise in long distance utility.  And to make it worthwhile, my wife and I would have to make sure it was used for every trip possible.  Electric cars are great, and even the current round are really cool, but I couldn’t help think that they will get much better very soon.  I also shopped electric motorcycles, but unfortunately the one I wanted cost $19,000, and given my wife can’t ride it, that was a non-starter.

Then my niece told me that my sister-in-law in France had started riding an electric bicycle and I started doing some research.  My commute is 19.2 miles each way, so I wondered, could an electric bike go that far in a reasonable amount of time?  The answer is yes, and there are already lots of ways to buy or build one.  Please check out this video I made, and consider and electric bike, if a traditional bike is not practical for the distance or (current) athleticism.  My cost ~$1,300 for the motor/controller/battery/shipping from in Australia, and I installed it myself on a really nice bike I found on Ebay.  I highly recommend checking out to learn about all the options you have for buying a new electric bike, including some new ones that are under $1000.  Even Trek and Raleigh are making them available in your local bike stores.  If this doesn’t resonate with you, consider sharing the video with someone who had to give up on the dream of cycling to work because of hills or distance.  As my local bicycle store owner said, “They are a game changer.”


Posted in Answers & Solutions | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

What are you doing for your Mother on EARTH DAY 2015?

“The secret of change is to focus all of your energy not on fighting the old, but on building the new.” Socrates                                                 EarthDay15

“Earth Day is a day that is intended to inspire awareness and appreciation for the Earth‘s natural environment. Earth Day was founded by Gaylord Nelson as an environmental teach-in first held on April 22, 1970. While this first Earth Day was focused on the United States, an organization launched by Denis Hayes, who was the original national coordinator in 1970, took it international in 1990 and organized events in 141 nations.It is celebrated in more than 175 countries.” Wikipedia reference

Just as we humans need to protect, nurture, and feed ourselves, we can offer to the planet, our Mother Earth, respect, protection, and nurturance.  “Given the present rate of planetary pollution and destruction, we need to negotiate a detente with nature and ourselves.” Paul Hawken. There are many positive actions taking place all over the world. For instance, there are over six thousand different women’s groups in Africa planting trees and four thousand organizations in North America have adopted a river, creek, or stream. Organic agriculture is the fastest growing sector of farming in North America, Japan, Mexico and Europe.  There are three thousand organizations that educate farmers, customers and legislators about sustainable and biological agriculture. The world is now understanding the need to move away from the dirty carbon based energies of the past 150 years into the clean and renewable energy future.  Solar, wind and wave energy technologies are just a few of the bright stars this future will be based on.

Our indigenous first peoples of the Americas have given the long held wisdom that we should always be thinking of the next seven generations to come in our interactions with Mother Earth. It is said that we do not own the earth, we borrow it from our children.  Many of us are just now coming to understand that the earth is taking care of us and not the other way around. Our actions have far reaching effects and consequences on our planet, climate, oceans and air. Droughts, flooding, super storms, melting of the glaciers and the ice caps in the north and south poles are just some indications of severe climate change.

“Great Spirit, whose dry lands thirst, help us to find the way to refresh your lands.

We pray for the power to refresh your lands.

Great Spirit, whose waters are choked with debris and pollution, help us to find the way to cleanse your waters.

We pray for your knowledge to find a way to cleanse the waters.

Great Spirit, whose beautiful earth grows ugly with misuse, help us to find the way to restore beauty to your handiwork.

We pray for your strength to restore the beauty of your handiwork.

Great Spirit, whose great creatures are being destroyed, help us to find a way to replenish them.

We pray for your power to replenish the earth.

Great Spirit, whose gifts to us are being lost in selfishness and corruption, help us to find the way to restore our humanity.

We pray for the wisdom to find the way to restore our humanity.”  UN Environmental Sabbath Program

It was our honor yesterday to help the Cub Scouts of troop 714 of San Clemente Las Palmas school to plant eight California Laurel Bay trees for their Earth Day celebration in their new camping area at Oso Lake. This was the first experience planting trees for this troop. They worked hard digging the holes, preparing the soil and placing the trees in the ground.  As we worked together, we had the opportunity to share the value of planting trees and how this action helps the future of the planet.  The scouts were amazed to learn that trees breathe in carbon dioxide and breathe out oxygen. As the work continued, their understanding of the cycle of life deepened. As we finished placing the last tree in the ground, a red tail hawk flew directly over our heads making her voice known to all of us.  It was clear that this sign was a good one and the spirit of the hawk was saying thank you.

How can we help to make Earth Day everyday? Here are some ideas:

    Plant trees

    Conserve water

    Walk or ride your bike to school or work

    Use public transportation



    Make your home energy efficient

To learn more visit the websites below:

Remember, on Earth Day and everyday, we are all part of the earth.


Joyce and Gene

Posted in ACTION ALERTS, Answers & Solutions | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment

On Earth Day will you join us and plant a tree for the health of the world?

Tree of Life  


“The clearest way into the Universe is through a forest wilderness”.   John Muir

While hiking through the woods in Sequoia National Park one summer, we came upon a grove of redwood trees.  Entering the group of Standing Ones, we felt ourselves become quiet as the awe within us grew.  The trees formed an almost perfect circle.   Allowing the silence of the place to sink in, we breathed deeply of the forest scent and relaxed into the peace surrounding us.  In this sacred grove of trees, we felt the connection with the Infinite.

In our home, we have on our walls beautiful woven pieces depicting “The Tree of Life”treeoflife.Dine symbol.   Each was created by a weaver from a different culture: Indian, Guatemalan, Native American.  The Tree of Life is a common image in art from around the world.  This ancient symbol is understood by people everywhere.  The symbol speaks of roots buried in the earth with branches stretching upward to the sky.  The tree serves as a living connection between this and other worlds.  Many myths describe gods and their messengers traveling from one world to another by climbing up or down the tree.

Long ago, in many cultures, trees were intensely worshipped. The Native American peoples called them the “Standing Ones.”  They respectfully used trees for medicine, food, fiber, dye, musical instruments, lodges for habitation and ceremony, and many other things.  Something precious was lost once modern peoples no longer viewed trees as living beings.  It became easy to clear cut acres and acres of trees to use as lumber without a thought of how great a loss this created.  For the sake of our Mother Earth, it is time to recall Dr. Albert Schweitzer’s words, “Reverence for all life.”

We cannot live without trees.  Trees have been called “the lungs of the world.”  They clean the air we breathe, taking in the carbon dioxide we exhale and we breathe the oxygen they exhale.  Trees are needed to produce rain and without the rain, topsoil is blown away, leading to the creation of deserts and hunger from famine.

“Oxford University scientists, after years of research, have determined the best technology to suck carbon dioxide from the atmosphere and try to reverse global warming is to plant trees.” from Bloomberg News

Over the past seven years, we have planted over two hundred trees in Orange County, CA. Man has taken so many trees that it is now time for us to reforest the earth that provides us with the basis for all life.  Your help is desperately needed to replenish trees, locally and around the world. “God has cared for these trees, saved them from drought, disease, avalanches, and a thousand tempests and floods. But he cannot save them from fools.”  John Muir.  We must always remember that we are all part of the earth.  OLYMPUS DIGITAL CAMERA

Here are some links for free trees and groups planting trees that need your help: LA area

More about why we should be planting trees.

Love, Gene and Joyce

Posted in ACTION ALERTS, Answers & Solutions, FOOD & WATER SAFETY | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment


Tell Gov Brown “WATER FOR PEOPLE NOT FOR FRACKERS” call or email him today. Governor Jerry Brown c/o State Capitol, Suite 1173 Sacramento, CA 95814, Phone: (916) 445-2841 Fax: (916) 558-3160 email at: Tell Jerry stop the frackers from wasting 2 million gallons of CA’s water each day. Water for people not for frackers. California Imposes First Mandatory Water Restrictions to Deal With Drought By ADAM NAGOURNEYAPRIL 1, 2015

Posted in ACTION ALERTS, FOOD & WATER SAFETY | Tagged , | Leave a comment

The World’s Nuclear Situation as I see it

First I would like to say that I am opposed to Nuclear Weapons, Nuclear Power and CA glowNuclear Waste, and I have worked hard over the years to stop the building of nuclear power plants starting with Wolf Creek in KS in the late 1970’s. I am happy to say that I worked with many others to help shut down San Onofre nuclear power plant in CA in 2013.  I am opposed  to “Nuclear” on all levels for spiritual and ethical reasons.  My ancestors have told me to leave the Earth in good shape, in a better way for the generations to come after us. My ultimate goal is to find a way to do that. The only way to do that is to stop making more nuclear waste of all types and find the safest possible solution.

This all started with the making of the atomic bomb in 1944. People of the world never want nuclear weapons to be used again.  We now have to look to see all of the effects the world is still experiencing because of that action. In the very early 1950’ s it didn’t take long for the US Government and the military to introduce the propaganda program called the “friendly nuclear atom” which has turned out unfortunately for all living creatures on our planet to be anything but friendly.  It was stated by those pushing nuclear power that it was going to be “safe and too cheap to meter”.  It was noted that there was “one minor problem, and that was the nuclear waste and how and what to do with it.”   But “don’t worry we’ll have it figured out before these nuclear power plants reach the end of their life in 40 years.”  That, too, has proven to be completely untrue!  The cost of nuclear power is the highest in the world, and the problem of the nuclear waste has not been solved. Now, 70 years later, the world has millions of metric tons of high-level nuclear waste, and a large portion of it we are now finding out is High Burn up fuel or HBF.  Which is much hotter in temperature and many times more radioactive, which will need to be cooled for a longer time, and stored for an even longer time frame.

We now find ourselves with stockpiles of nuclear weapons and over 450 nuclear power plants in the world.  All of the nuclear power plants in the world are either completely full or will be full soon of nuclear waste.  Nuclear waste will have to be stored for many thousands of years.  Here lies the problem. The nuclear industry tells us that the new nuclear  technology for building new power plants has improved exponentially.  But of course we must use caution because the world’s history with nuclear safety has not been a good one!  At this time it must be asked how many more nuclear accidents can the world afford?  I say none.  At the same time I believe that nuclear power plant technology has improved somewhat with new designs and techniques, but still there is no answer to the nuclear waste problem.

Some questions that need to be asked:

  1. What are we going to do with all the nuclear weapons and nuclear waste?
  2. Is nuclear necessary at all?
  3. Should we stop making anymore nuclear waste?
  4. Is it really safe to store nuclear waste in populated areas?
  5. Are we going to let every nuclear power plant become a nuclear waste dump?
  6. How safe is it really to put large stockpiles of nuclear weapons & waste underground in one area or even in several regional areas for long periods of time?
  7. Will the safe storage of nuclear waste ever be accomplished, and how safe would it really be?
  8. Is the real solution to reduce the volume and the radiation risk of nuclear waste, and is this possible?
  9. Can renewable energy keep up with our power needs?

Answers and solutions that need action now. They are: 

  1. Shutdown and stop making more nuclear weapons and nuclear waste now is a must.
  2. I believe it will be proven that it is not safe to store large amounts of these materials together in the same areas for long periods of time, and that is not the legacy I choose to leave for the future.
  3. The reduction of volume of this nuclear material and radiation levels is the only satisfactory answer for the world’s future and this is the legacy I would choose for us.
  4. This will only be done in my opinion by fourth generation nuclear power plants that use nuclear waste and nuclear weapons as fuel. These new plants should be used until this waste is consumed and depleted and is no longer a danger to life on earth and then shut down forever.  This concept, of course, has to be proven to everyone’s satisfaction before it is put in place.
  5. Renewable energy sources and conservation can and will keep up with our power requirements for the future.

I know that many will disagree with me and have different solutions, and that is good. The purpose of this article is that we do not overlook any real ways to solve this problem. We must remember that we made this trouble for ourselves and it is up to us to make it go away. But to just bury our heads in the sand with our nuclear waste, will that give us the outcome the world needs?

“When you have exhausted all possibilities, remember this–you haven’t.” Thomas Edison

Gene Stone,  Residents Organized For a Safe Environment (ROSE)

Drawing by Jerry Collamer

Posted in Answers & Solutions, FOOD & WATER SAFETY, NUCLEAR NEWS & INFO | Tagged , , , , , , , | 2 Comments

Water is Life


water day-1“Water is life.” George Mackenzie Tlicho, NW Territories, Canada.

Water is Sacred to Indigenous peoples around the world because they know nothing on Earth lives without water, and that includes the living Planet Earth. International Decade for action “Water for Life”.  “On 28 July 2010 Resolution 64/292, the United Nations General Assembly explicitly recognized the human right to water and sanitation and acknowledged that clean drinking water and sanitation are essential to the realisation of all human rights. In 2006, the Human Rights Council (HRC) adopted decision 2/104 “human rights and access to water”.  It’s that face of America that Catarina de Albuquerque witnessed at the end of her U.S. visit.. De Albuquerque, the UN independent expert on water and sanitation, visited the U.S. to examine human rights obligations related to access to safe drinking water and sanitation. What she found was not befitting of the world’s richest nation.” from UN documents.

‘The human right to water and sanitation entitles everyone to water and sanitation that is available, accessible, affordable, acceptable and safe without discrimination. But de Albuquerque found that people of color and Native Americans disproportionately suffer insufficient access to clean water and sanitation services. While less than one percent of non-native American households have no access to safe water and/or wastewater disposal, 13 percent of Native Americans lack access.” from UN documents.

Here are some important facts about water from Water. Org:

  1. 1 in 9 people in the world lack access to safe water.
  2. Women and children spend 140 million hours a day collecting water.
  3. 840,000 people die each year from a water related disease.

From our personal experience:

We saw the reality of these statistics when we traveled with a group of volunteers to a small village in the mountains of Guatemala to build a medical clinic and provide basic healthcare to the people living there.

Many of the children were malnourished from the scarcity of food, but the main contributor to low weight and poor health was the lack of access to clean water.   Drinking from the streams and ponds caused the children to ingest parasites which created great suffering.  Medication and education about boiling water decreased the problem over time for that village, but the challenge to create a sustainable clean water source is ongoing.

After that experience, we never thought of water in quite the same way.  We saw for ourselves how a beautiful, vibrant child’s potential could be destroyed by the lack of what some Native American people call “the sacred life blood.”  Conserving water and contributing to clean water projects around the world became part of our lives.

On World Water Day, we renew our commitment to support the right of all living things to clean, abundant water.   We know many of you already have the same commitment.  Here are a few more conservation ideas to consider.


  1. Never put water down the drain when there may be another use for it such as watering a plant or garden, or cleaning.
  2. Verify that your home is leak-free, because many homes have hidden water leaks. Read your water meter before and after a two-hour period when no water is being used. If the meter does not read exactly the same, there is a leak.
  3. Repair dripping faucets by replacing washers. If your faucet is dripping at the rate of one drop per second, you can expect to waste 2,700 gallons per year which will add to the cost of water and sewer utilities, or strain your septic system.
  4. Check for toilet tank leaks by adding food coloring to the tank. If the toilet is leaking, color will appear within 30 minutes. Check the toilet for worn out, corroded or bent parts. Most replacement parts are inexpensive, readily available and easily installed. (Flush as soon as test is done, since food coloring may stain tank.)
  5. Take shorter showers. Replace your showerhead with an ultra-low-flow version. Some units are available that allow you to cut off the flow without adjusting the water temperature knobs.
  6. Avoid flushing the toilet unnecessarily. Dispose of tissues, insects and other such waste in the trash rather than the toilet.

There are many ways for us to conserve water.  To learn more use the links below for some great tips:

First, we must acknowledge the sacredness of and the necessity for clean water for all life on our planet. Then we must learn to use this gift wisely and share it equally, respecting the rights of access to the source of all life.  “Water is Life” and we must take action now because “We are all part of the Earth.”

Love, Gene & Joyce

Image by Hamomilaki


Posted in ACTION ALERTS, Answers & Solutions, FOOD & WATER SAFETY | Tagged , , | Leave a comment

How will you find your place in the Universe?

How will you find your place in the Universe?

Until we realize we are not separate from everything in the universe, we will continue to believe that we are alienated from nature. Edgar Mitchell, one of the few human beings to earth-day-image-2013-9have walked on the moon’s surface, describes his experience of viewing the earth from space in these words, ” Gradually I was flooded with the ecstatic awareness that I was part of what I was observing. Every molecule in my body was birthed in a star hanging in space. I became aware that everything that exists is part of one intricately interconnected whole. ”

Indigenous people all over the world have long sought and found their place in the universe. The search for this understanding of how we are connected to the Source of Life is far under -estimated in modern times.

I spent many years searching for my own understanding of my place in the Universe.  One beautiful spring day in Kansas, I found myself sitting upon the earth watching the Thunder Beings forming over the ridge. As I continued to observe the gathering Cloud People, I had the sense that I was looking down upon myself from above.

In that moment of time, all things stopped.  It became clear to me that I was not separate from the creation, but I was connected with all of the creation. To truly understand myself, I knew I needed to understand my place in the Universe.

Feeling our connection, knowing who we are, helps us to find our purpose and live in harmony with all of our Relations.

We weave our personal vision together to form a common vision of good for ourselves and for the planet. Joining with all our relations, we can learn to walk peacefully upon Mother Earth, knowing that she provides for all living things. We are all part of the Earth.

Love, Gene and Joyce

Posted in Answers & Solutions, FOOD & WATER SAFETY | Tagged , , , | Leave a comment