Nautilus Minerals, a Canadian mining corporation, plans to build a deep sea mine near Papua New Guinea, from which it would extract gold and copper as early as 2018. Other deep sea mining projects promise to harvest rare earth minerals commonly used in computers and smartphones. But you already know how mining on land pollutes ecosystems; what do you suppose mining in the ocean would do? Nautilus's SOLWARA 1 mine would operate near a rich and diverse ecosystem, and it would also operate near coastal communities whose economies depend substantially on what their fishers bring home -- and with a giant mining complex in the sea, they'd very likely bring home a lot less. So Avaaz helps you tell various actors, including Papua New Guinea's government and potential Nautilus investors, to abandon the SOLWARA 1 project. Would it be piling on for me to say that an actual conservative wouldn't go upending ecosystems he doesn't understand just for the sake of making more money -- or even for fulfilling a perceived market need that could well be rendered moot by future technological developments?
Meanwhile, speaking of "future technological developments," Sum of Us helps you tell Apple to end its practice of "planned obsolescence." Have you ever resisted downloading the "latest" system upgrade because you're afraid of what it'll do to your iPhone or iPad? Well, you're not alone: among many other problems, the "latest" upgrades tend to slow down your machines so that you'll, you know, be tempted to buy the newest machine -- which isn't very "green" of Apple, you know, since those "obsolete" machines are going to wind up in landfills. And though most folks are actually fairly resourceful and can get along for a very long time with what they've got, Apple doesn't even let you "downgrade" back to your old system anymore. Sure Apple has every right to try to make its hardware and software better, but "better" doesn't mean the same thing to all of its customers. And don't be the one who claims that Apple can't possibly support all that ancient software that someone might be using. Of course they can! It's just that the solution would be to create jobs for technicians, and how's a CEO supposed to redistribute income upward to himself that way?