Robber fly - Nature photographer Thomas Shahan specializes in amazing portraits of tiny insects. It isn't easy. Shahan says that this Robber Fly (Holcocephala fusca), for instance, is "skittish" and doesn't like its picture taken.

Nature by Numbers (Video)

"The Greater Akashic System" – July 15, 2012 (Kryon Channelling by Lee Caroll) (Subjects: Lightworkers, Intent, To meet God, Past lives, Universe/Galaxy, Earth, Pleiadians, Souls Reincarnate, Invention: Measure Quantum state in 3D, Recalibrates, Multi-Dimensional/Divine, Akashic System to change to new system, Before religion changed the system, DNA, Old system react to Karma, New system react to intent now for next life, Animals (around humans) reincarnate again, This Animal want to come back to the same human, Akashic Inheritance, Reincarnate as Family, Other Planets, Global Unity … etc.)

Question: Dear Kryon: I live in Spain. I am sorry if I will ask you a question you might have already answered, but the translations of your books are very slow and I might not have gathered all information you have already given. I am quite concerned about abandoned animals. It seems that many people buy animals for their children and as soon as they grow, they set them out somewhere. Recently I had the occasion to see a small kitten in the middle of the street. I did not immediately react, since I could have stopped and taken it, without getting out of the car. So, I went on and at the first occasion I could turn, I went back to see if I could take the kitten, but it was to late, somebody had already killed it. This happened some month ago, but I still feel very sorry for that kitten. I just would like to know, what kind of entity are these animals and how does this fit in our world. Are these entities which choose this kind of life, like we do choose our kind of Human life? I see so many abandoned animals and every time I see one, my heart aches... I would like to know more about them.

Answer: Dear one, indeed the answer has been given, but let us give it again so you all understand. Animals are here on earth for three (3) reasons.

(1) The balance of biological life. . . the circle of energy that is needed for you to exist in what you call "nature."

(2) To be harvested. Yes, it's true. Many exist for your sustenance, and this is appropriate. It is a harmony between Human and animal, and always has. Remember the buffalo that willingly came into the indigenous tribes to be sacrificed when called? These are stories that you should examine again. The inappropriateness of today's culture is how these precious creatures are treated. Did you know that if there was an honoring ceremony at their death, they would nourish you better? Did you know that there is ceremony that could benefit all of humanity in this way. Perhaps it's time you saw it.

(3) To be loved and to love. For many cultures, animals serve as surrogate children, loved and taken care of. It gives Humans a chance to show compassion when they need it, and to have unconditional love when they need it. This is extremely important to many, and provides balance and centering for many.

Do animals know all this? At a basic level, they do. Not in the way you "know," but in a cellular awareness they understand that they are here in service to planet earth. If you honor them in all three instances, then balance will be the result. Your feelings about their treatment is important. Temper your reactions with the spiritual logic of their appropriateness and their service to humanity. Honor them in all three cases.

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle

Dian Fossey's birthday celebrated with a Google doodle
American zoologist played by Sigourney Weaver in the film Gorillas in the Mist would have been 82 on Thursday (16 January 2014)

Saturday, April 7, 2007

Water concession no guarantee of equal access to services

Tertiani ZB Simanjuntak, The Jakarta Post, Jakarta

Market prices rise rapidly to reflect increased scarcity.

The limited supply of water and the costs associated with processing and the maintenance of the pipes channeling the water to customers are among the reasons why water operators impose rates.

The question is how much should a tap water customer pay?

It is free if they take it directly from the springs uphill, groundwater reserves or even the polluted rivers.

Water is a basic necessity, thus the people's right to access water should be guaranteed and protected by the government.

To guarantee it, the city-owned water operator has imposed fixed rates for the first 10 cubic meters used and progressive prices for further usage.

The United Nations Children's Fund (UNICEF) standard is a minimum of 20 liters of water per person for daily use of water, including for cooking, drinking, bathing and washing.

The latest data from the government's Working Group for Drinking Water and Sanitation (Pokja AMPL) says that one person living in the city uses 100-120 liters per day on average with many people use piped water to water the garden, wash their car or open a home laundry business.

Pokja AMPL executive Oswar Muadzin Mungkasa said that the average family of four in Pondok Indah, South Jakarta, used 20 cubic meters or more of water each month.

With the current rate of Rp 6,525 per cubic meter, a family with an income of more than Rp 5 million per month could afford to use that much water, despite their complaints of frequent disruption and low water quality.

Customers like these are treasured by water providers, not low-income households that use a maximum of five cubic meters of water per month. The city's two water operator partners are currently focusing on the more prosperous parts of the capital to ensure a swift return on their investment, leaving 88 percent of the urban poor without access to piped water.

The most severe conditions are in coastal areas of North Jakarta. The city's private partners have argued the metal water pipes are corroding due to sea intrusion and are hence impossible to maintain.

Opening new access to densely populated slums is another reason, besides the residents' inability to raise the Rp 1 million connection fee.

In his final year dissertation, presented in August at the University of Indonesia's School of Economics and titled The impact of drinking water investment on economic growth and income distribution in Jakarta, Oswar found that the urban poor in North Jakarta paid almost five times more for clean water compared to people living on the other side of the city.

"Sea intrusion makes it impossible for them to exploit groundwater. Lack of access to piped water leaves them with no other choice but to buy water from vendors," he told The Jakarta Post.

A study on small-scale water providers, funded by the Asian Development Bank, found that the business was dominated by cart vendors in number. The price of 20 liters of water in one jerrican is tagged at between Rp 3,000-5,000 by the vendors. With a total of about Rp 50,000 per cubic meter, to meet their monthly water need of five cubic meters, each household has to spend up to Rp 250,000.

"They spend too much on water. The international standard for water price is only 3 percent of monthly income," Oswar said.

Jakarta's minimum wage hovers at about Rp 1 million.

Alizar Yazid, an expert with the Jakarta Water Regulatory Body, said that a large part of water investment had gone into efforts to minimize leakage and water theft.

"If the problem were solved, we could move on to improving water access for the poor," he told the Post.

Oscar said that, in the meantime, the government was subsidizing the poor through its scheme to offset the fuel price increases, as well as the provision of community wells and public bathrooms.

For "practical reasons", the facilities are situated at the far end of the water connection to ease distribution but far from the targeted slum dwellers. And that is how the money game starts.

Thugs hover around the facilities, imposing fees for those who want to fill their water containers or use the toilets.

Meanwhile, vendors make money delivering water by cart to the slum dwellers.

"As soon as the facilities are built, they are handed over to the locals who operate and maintain them. Imposing fees is understandable, because maintenance requires money. Unfortunately, there is no further monitoring on how it benefits the poor," Oswar said.

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