Wednesday, April 2, 2008
HIV/ AIDS, tuberculosis, and malaria are devastating entire communities and economies. Poor countries are losing their teachers, doctors and nurses. Businesses are losing their workers. Governments are losing their civil servants. Families are losing their breadwinners.
The internationally agreed upon goal is to halt and begin to reverse the spread of HIV/AIDS, Tuberculosis (TB) and Malaria.
Based on current estimates, meeting this goal would result in approximately 16,000 lives saved every day.
U.S. leadership in fighting these three diseases must continue through a coordinated approach that utilizes both bilateral and multilateral tools. The ultimate goal should be to provide 1/3 of the global funding requirements for HIV/AIDS, TB and malaria and achieve universal access to prevention, care and treatment for all three diseases by 2015.
Proven, cost-effective strategies can prevent and treat these diseases
Antiretroviral medication used to treat people living with HIV/AIDS costs as little as $140 per patient per year, down from nearly $10,000 a year less than 10 years ago.
TB can be fully cured with effective treatment that costs as little as $16 per person for the full treatment course (six to eight months) with a success rate of up to 80% in the poorest countries. TB treatment is also one of the best ways to find those who are HIV positive and keep them alive.
Malaria can be all but eliminated through four highly successful interventions: insecticide treated bed nets, indoor residual spraying, preventative treatment for pregnant women, and treatment for those already infected. It costs as little as $2 to purchase the most effective malaria treatments.1
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"What do beer cans, car tires and water bottles have in common?
Not much unless you're renegade architect Michael Reynolds, in which case they are tools of choice for producing thermal mass and energy-independent housing.
For 30 years New Mexico-based Reynolds and his green disciples have devoted their time to advancing the art of 'Earthship Biotecture' by building self-sufficient, off-the-grid communities where design and function converge in eco-harmony.
However, these experimental structures that defy state standards create conflict between Reynolds and the authorities, who are backed by big business. Frustrated by antiquated legislation, Reynolds lobbies for the right to create a sustainable living test site. While politicians hum and ha, Mother Nature strikes, leaving communities devastated by tsunamis and hurricanes.
Reynolds and his crew seize the opportunity to lend their pioneering skills to those who need it most. Shot over three years and in four countries, Garbage Warrior is a timely portrait of a determined visionary, a hero of the 21st century."1
A much needed spark
Garbage Warrior is a powerful and never more timely documentary.
The vast social infrastructure changes required to sustain the livelihood of the average human life, amidst the Age of Environmental Dismemberment, are thoughtfully presented in the microcosm of Reynold's story.
This film elicits hope in the most disenfranchised of minds that humans will do what they can and always have done to survive - ADAPT.
I mean if Michael Reynolds can "pick bananas in the living room from the sewage system," genuine progress must be at hand.2
Go see it.
Watch the trailer below and an interview with Reynolds on the Colbert Report here.