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Cigarette Butts Are The Single Most Littered Item On Our Planet

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Cigarette Butts Are The Single Most Littered Item On Our Planet
Photo Credit: Collective Evolution

Over the past several years a lot of attention has been brought to the amount of trash that is ending up in our world’s oceans. We have seen straw bans happening around the world and bans on single-use plastic bags as well. There has been a concerted effort to make single-use cutlery compostable or even edible. Although this is a huge step in the right direction and something that we should continue to do, there is one pollutant that should be in the spotlight as it is the single greatest source of ocean trash — cigarette butts.

For some reason, this small, but ubiquitous source of trash has mostly avoided any form of regulation. This soon could change if a committed group of activists has a say.

A tobacco industry academic, California lawmaker, and a worldwide surfing organization are among the growing number of people who are arguing that cigarette filters should be banned.

“It’s pretty clear there is no health benefit from filters. They are just a marketing tool. And they make it easier for people to smoke. It’s also a major contaminant, with all that plastic waste. It seems like a no-brainer to me that we can’t continue to allow this,” Thomas Novotny, a professor of public health at San Diego State University told NBC News.

A California assemblyman proposed an outright ban on cigarettes with filters but wasn’t able to get the proposal out of the committee. A state senator from New York has written legislation to create a rebate program for butts returned to redemption centres, but that idea is also on hold. San Francisco has propositioned for a 60% pack increase to raise around $3 million annually to help to cover the cost of cleaning up these discarded butts.

Time To Tackle The Most Littered Item In The World

The Truth Initiative, one of the largest anti-smoking initiatives in the U.S. is doing everything it can to raise awareness around this issue. They use funds collected between state attorneys general and tobacco industries to deliver hard facts against smoking. The group used a nationally televised Video Music Awards show to launch a campaign against cigarette butts. The group is going against the hands down, “most littered item in the world.”

With 5.6 trillion cigarettes manufactured worldwide each year, the filters made from cellulose acetate, a form of plastic that takes a minimum of 10 years to decompose. An alarming two-thirds of those butts are dumped irresponsibly each year according to Novotny, who founded the Cigarette Butt Pollution Project.

Since 1982 the Ocean Conservancy has sponsored a beach cleanup. Each year, cigarette butts have been the most collected item on the beaches of the world. Over 60 million have been collected over that period of time. Out of all the plastic wrappers, eating utensils, bottles, containers, cigarette butts have accounted for one-third of all the trash collected.

Let’s not forget that these discarded filters contain synthetic fibres and hundreds of chemicals that are used to treat tobacco. Novonty is actively pursuing further research to see exactly what waste from cigarettes is leaching into the soil, streams, rivers, and oceans.

More research is needed to determine exactly what happens to all of that,” said Nick Mallos, director of the Trash Free Seas campaign for the Ocean Conservancy. “The final question is what impact these micro-plastics and other waste have on human health.”

Do We Even Need Filters?

Filters were made in the mid-20th century to help mitigate growing concerns in regards to the health impacts of tobacco. It was determined that filters weren’t even able to control the carcinogenic compounds from smoking. Then “filters became a marketing tool, designed to recruit and keep smokers as consumers of these hazardous products,” according to research conducted by Bradley Harris, a graduate scholar in the history of science and technology at Stanford University.

How Can We Take Action?

Are you a smoker? If so it is up to you to take responsibility for the proper disposal of your butts. This may even be enough of a drawback from smoking that it may inspire you to quit. If not, there are many options available. One being, rolling your own cigarettes, and either just going filter-less or using a reusable, cleanable filter. The mass produced, chemical-laden, filtered cigarettes are hardly ideal. It is possible to get organically grown, additive free tobacco, which would be much less harmful to you.

What can you do to minimize your impact? Change starts with us! We can all do our part.

This article (Cigarette Butts Are The Single Most Littered Item On Our Planet) was originally created for Collective Evolution and is published here under Creative Commons.

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“Wearing A Mask…Offers Little, If Any, Protection From Infection” – Harvard Doctors

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“Wearing A Mask…Offers Little, If Any, Protection From Infection” – Harvard Doctors
Photo Credit: Collective Evolution

What Happened: A paper published a couple of months ago in the New England Journal of Medicine by, Michael Klompas, M.D., M.P.H., Charles A. Morris, M.D., M.P.H., Julia Sinclair, M.B.A., Madelyn Pearson, D.N.P., R.N., and Erica S. Shenoy, M.D., Ph.D., states the following:

We know that wearing a mask outside health care facilities offers little, if any, protection from infection. Public health authorities define a significant exposure to Covid-19 as face-to-face contact within 6 feet with a patient with symptomatic Covid-19 that is sustained for at least a few minutes (and some say more than 10 minutes or even 30 minutes). The chance of catching Covid-19 from a passing interaction in a public space is therefore minimal. In many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.

The calculus may be different, however, in health care settings. First and foremost, a mask is a core component of the personal protective equipment (PPE) clinicians need when caring for symptomatic patients with respiratory viral infections, in conjunction with gown, gloves, and eye protection. Masking in this context is already part of routine operations for most hospitals. What is less clear is whether a mask offers any further protection in health care settings in which the wearer has no direct interactions with symptomatic patients.

The study goes on to examine whether a mask alone is even an effective health-care measure, and discusses its capability alone devoid of other, what seem to be more important practices, like washing your hands. The point is, outside of a healthcare setting, where their usefulness is still questionable, they provide no clear protection from Covid-19, so why are they being mandated like they are? Instead of a mandate, should the citizenry simply be encouraged to wear masks, with the government explaining the science and still giving people a choice?  Why are they saying it’s to protect other people when there is no evidence that it actually does that?

What’s interesting about this particular study is that it’s one of multiple that mention how masks are more of a symbolic representation. As mentioned above, the paper states that “in many cases, the desire for widespread masking is a reflexive reaction to anxiety over the pandemic.” Again, the study is an examination of the validity of masks in a health care setting (which is also questionable) with regards to the new coronavirus, and clearly states that it’s already known that they offer almost zero protection in a public setting.

It is also clear that masks serve symbolic roles. Masks are not only tools, they are also talismans that may help increase health care workers’ perceived sense of safety, well-being, and trust in their hospitals. Although such reactions may not be strictly logical, we are all subject to fear and anxiety, especially during times of crisis. One might argue that fear and anxiety are better countered with data and education than with a marginally beneficial mask, particularly in light of the worldwide mask shortage, but it is difficult to get clinicians to hear this message in the heat of the current crisis. Expanded masking protocols’ greatest contribution may be to reduce the transmission of anxiety, over and above whatever role they may play in reducing transmission of Covid-19.

The study provides other justifications for masks, but the prevention of Covid-19 is not one of them.

Below is a quote from a very interesting paper published in 2016, titled “The Surgical Mask Is A Bad Fit For Risk Reduction.

As represented by our cinema and other media, Western society expects too much of masks. In the public’s mind, the still-legitimate use of masks for source control has gone off-label; masks are thought to prevent infection. From here, another problem arises: because surgical masks are thought to protect against infection in the community setting, people wearing masks for legitimate purposes (those who have a cough in a hospital, say) form part of the larger misperception and act to reinforce it. Even this proper use of surgical masks is incorporated into a larger improper use in the era of pandemic fear, especially in Asia, where such fear is high. The widespread misconception about the use of surgical masks — that wearing a mask protects against the transmission of virus — is a problem of the kind theorized by German sociologist Ulrich Beck.

The birth of the mask came from the realization that surgical wounds need protection from the droplets released in the breath of surgeons. The technology was applied outside the operating room in an effort to control the spread of infectious epidemics. In the 1919 influenza pandemic, masks were available and were dispensed to populations, but they had no impact on the epidemic curve. At the time, it was unknown that the influenza organism is nanoscopic and can theoretically penetrate the surgical mask barrier. As recently as 2010, the US National Academy of Sciences declared that, in the community setting, “face masks are not designed or certified to protect the wearer from exposure to respiratory hazards.” A number of studies have shown the inefficacy of the surgical mask in household settings to prevent transmission of the influenza virus…

A study published in 2015 found that cloth masks can increase healthcare workers risk of infection. It also called into question the efficacy of medical masks. You can read more about that and access it here.

The physiological effects of breathing elevated inhaled CO2 may include changes in visual performance, modified exercise endurance, headaches and dyspnea. The psychological effects include decreased reasoning and alertness, increased irritability, severe dyspnea, headache, dizziness, perspiration, and short-term memory loss. (source)

The list goes on, these are just a few examples.

Manufactured Panic?

The next important question to ask ourselves is, are health authorities making this pandemic out to be more serious than it actually is? Many scientists and epidemiologists from around the world have expressed this belief, and many of them, as a result, have been censored by social media platforms. Why is there an authoritarian “fact-checker” going around censoring information, evidence, and opinions being presented by some of the world’s leading scientists in this area simply because it opposes the narrative given to us by organizations like The World Health Organization? (WHO)

Are masks being used to prolong fear and hysteria?

John P. A. Ioannidis, a professor of medicine and epidemiology at Stanford University has said that the infection fatality rate is close to 0% for people under the age of 45 years old. Why are we taking such measures for a respiratory infection when tens of millions of people get infected and die from respiratory viruses every single year?

Why is there so much controversy surrounding the deaths? For example, in Toronto Canada, “Individuals who have died with COVID-19, but not as a result of COVID-19 are included in the case counts for COVID-19 deaths in Toronto.” (source)

Dr. Ngozi Ezike, Director of the Illinois Department of Public Health, recently stated that, even if it’s clear one died of an alternative cause, their death will still be marked as a COVID death.

The Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment announced a change to how it tallies coronavirus deaths amid complaints that it inflated numbers. This has been a common theme throughout the US as well as the World.

Vittorio Sgarbi, Italian politician Mayor of Sutri gave an emotional speech at a hearing on the 24th of April where he emphasized that the number of deaths in Italy due to COVID-19 are completely false and that the people are being lied to.

This isn’t even the tip of the ice-berg when it comes to manufactured deaths.

What’s really going on here? Is this actually about the pandemic, or was Edward Snowden right? That governments are using the new coronavirus to impose more authoritarian measures on the population, measures that will stick around long after the virus is gone? You can read more about his comments here.

Was Dr. Ron Paul correct when he said that this virus is less dangerous than it’s being made out to be? And that people will profit both politically and financially from this in the form of more of our basic rights being taken away? Is this simply being used like the justification for mass surveillance was used? To protect the population, or is it for, as NSA whistle-blower William Binney says, “total population control?” You can read more about his comments here.

The Takeaway

It’s quite clear that a large portion of the population doesn’t agree with various medical mandates, and wearing masks is one of those mandates. The reason is justified, and that’s simply because there is no evidence that they can protect the general public, and depending on the material, in some cases it can be harmful. I find it hard to believe that someone would have an issue with someone else not wanting to breathe in their own carbon monoxide, but I also understand that many people’s perception with regards to this pandemic has been severely manipulated.

On the flip side, due to so many instances where things don’t make sense, this pandemic is contributing to another large amount of people questioning what we are being told and being forced to do by our government, this is causing a deep awakening of the masses. Perhaps this is the larger reason it’s playing out from a collective consciousness perspective.

At the end of the day, more measures are continually pushed upon the population without their consent. We don’t have to continue to obey, continue to elect, and help maintain a system that is clearly not serving us to thrive.

This article (“Wearing A Mask…Offers Little, If Any, Protection From Infection” – Harvard Doctors) was originally created for Collective Evolution and is published here under Creative Commons.

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Ghislaine Maxwell Is Moved From “Cell To Cell” To Prevent Assassins From Killing Her

She is being moved from cell to cell in an attempt to prevent potential assassins from knowing where she is.

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Ghislaine Maxwell Is Moved From “Cell To Cell”
Photo Credit: Mint Press News

(TMU) – Former Jeffrey Epstein associate Ghislaine Maxwell is said to have evidence that shows powerful world leaders being involved in crimes against children, and concerns are growing that her life could be in danger.

At the Metropolitan Detention Center (MDC) in Brooklyn, New York, where Maxwell arrived last Monday, the staff has taken extreme measures to prevent an assassination or suicide from happening on their watch.

At first, Maxwell’s clothes were taken away, and she was forced to wear paper gowns as a precaution, so she didn’t have any materials that she could use to hang herself with.

She was later allowed to wear normal prison clothes and is now no longer considered a suicide risk, but authorities are still concerned about her safety. She is being moved from cell to cell in an attempt to prevent potential assassins from knowing where she is.

A source told the Daily Mail that, “She is being moved from cell to cell and sometimes has a cellmate, sometimes not. [The authorities] are terrified someone will try to kill her so they keep moving her around. Jeffrey Epstein died behind bars and they [the authorities] are terrified someone will try to kill Ghislaine.”

There are also concerns that a coronavirus outbreak at the prison could take her life.

Conditions are terrible at the jail and there’s an outbreak of Covid which could kill her. It’s impossible for her to talk to her lawyers or family in a timely way. How can she prepare a defence when the lawyers can’t even get hold of her?” the source said.

As we previously reported, Maxwell is in COVID isolation and hoping to be released on bail because of the virus. However, it is doubtful that isolation from a virus of this nature is possible at a facility like this, especially with her being moved from cell to cell so frequently.

Maxwell and Epstein had many powerful friends, but once Epstein was arrested, those friends likely began to see the pair as a liability. A former jewel thief that had a business relationship with Epstein and a sexual relationship with Maxwell claims that they made him watch videos where he saw at least two prominent US politicians sexually assaulting underage girls.

Earlier this week, a lawyer for Epstein victims said that Prince Andrew is on the secret stash of recordings that Maxwell plans to use as a bargaining tool to get a reduced prison sentence.

‘There is no doubt Prince Andrew would have been captured on footage filmed in rooms and private areas of Epstein’s property,” attorney David Boies said.

On Sunday, Boies told The Mail that, “We know there were cameras throughout the New York mansion and in Epstein’s other properties. We know there were a multitude of cameras and very large quantities of tapes. Prince Andrew would have been included. He would certainly have been included among the people who would have been captured on the tapes.”

At this point, it is highly possible that any evidence that Maxwell had against her former friends is already in the hands of investigators.

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Ghislaine Maxwell Has Tapes Of Politicians With Children According To A Long Time Friend

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Ghislaine Maxwell 2020
Photo Credit: Collective Evolution

What Happened: Christopher Mason, a  TV host and journalist known for his book, “The Art of the Seal” which exposed a price-fixing scandal within the art world that tells the story of elite people who conspired to cheat clients out of millions, has known Ghislaine Maxwell since the 1980s. He has gone on the record and said he was told that Epstein rigged his multiple homes with cameras and kept surveillance tapes of everyone and everything that went on inside of them and that Ghislaine Maxwell, has access to all of this footage. Multiple media outlets are now reporting on this.

Here’s a picture of both of them together.

Mason is not the only one to accuse Epstein of being in the blackmail business. Jeffrey Epstein’s has clear ties to intelligence, there are clear links to U.S. and  Israeli intelligence A recent interview given by a former high-ranking official in Israeli military intelligence has also claimed that Epstein has a  sexual blackmail business, and that the operation was actually an Israeli intelligence operation run for the purposes of entrapping powerful individuals and politicians all over the world.

In an interview with Zev Shalev, former senior executive for Israel’s Directorate of Military Intelligence and CBS News executive producer and award-winning investigative journalist for Narativ, he claimed to have met Jeffrey Epstein and Ghislaine Maxwell back in the 1980s and that both Epstein and Maxwell were alreadyworking with Israeli intelligence during that time period. You can read more about that here.

According to the New York Post:

“Ghislaine has always been as cunning as they come. She wasn’t going to be with Epstein all those years and not have some insurance,” the ex-friend told the news outlet….The secret stash of sex tapes I believe Ghislaine has squirrelled away could end up being her get-out-of-jail card if the authorities are willing to trade. She has copies of everything Epstein had. They could implicate some twisted movers and shakers,” the former friend said.

BUT

We must ask ourselves, has she worked something out?  Is this simply a ploy to take down a select individuals that some powerful people want taken down, when it really involves a whole lot more, including  the ones who are using Maxwell to possibly take others down? We will have to see, but it’s obviously a very important question to ask.

Why This Is Important: It’s important because there is already a lot of evidence existing that shows the people who are making major decisions, people within major global organizations like the UN, are making decisions for human beings with regards to all aspects of our life, from health, to education, to medicine and more. Politics and the world of our financial elite is overrun with corruption, deceit, lies, blackmail and more.

We have to ask ourselves, is it really surprising that our world is in the condition it is with regards to environmental issues, and many others, when those who are making major decisions in this category with regards to political policy are actively engaged in such immoral and unethical acts?

These moments that creep into the mainstream also highlight how this type of activity is able to sustain itself for such a long period of time, and that’s simply because these people have access to great power and control nearly everything.

A great example is Cardinal George Pell, who  a couple of years ago became  the highest ranking Vatican official to ever be convicted of child sexual abuse. Of course, he has now been freed from jail after Australia’s highest court overturned his conviction, but did you know that he himself established The Diocesan Commission Into Sexual Abuse?  This is a common theme. The ones who we go to combat these problems are often, themselves involved.

This is a very deep topic, and if you want to learn more about it you can watch our interview with Anneke Lucas, an author, speaker, advocate for child sex trafficking victims, and founder of the non-profit organization Liberation Prison Yoga, and creator of the Unconditional Model.

Her work is based off her 30-year journey to restore her mental and physical wellbeing after surviving some of the worst atrocities known to humankind before the age of 12. Sold as a young child into a murderous pedophile network by her family, she was rescued after nearly six years of abuse and torture.

The Takeaway

At the end of the day, we have to ask ourselves, do we really want to continue to follow, obey and take direction, orders and mandates from people who clearly don’t have the best interests of humanity at heart? Do we want to continue to hand our power over to a ‘leader’ who is made out to be the one who can really make change, or will we take back our power, our own consciousness and refuse to participate in a system that really leaves us no choice? What we have is the illusion of democracy, were not actually living in one.

This article (Ghislaine Maxwell Has Tapes of Politicians With Children According To A Long Time Friend) was originally created for Collective Evolution and is published here under Creative Commons.

The views in this article may not reflect editorial policy of Collective Spark.

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Forget Drive-Ins: Paris To Host Floating Movie Theater With Socially Distant Boats On Seine River

The waters of the Seine river in Paris, France, will host an innovative floating movie theater where people can enjoy films alongside their families.

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Floating Movie Theater
Photo Credit: TMU

(TMU) – Earlier this year as the COVID-19 pandemic began sinking its hooks into the world, drive-in movie theatres were a huge topic of surging interest, with many people clamouring for a safe and socially-distanced outlet for entertainment outside the home.

The idea of reviving the old past-time caught on so well that drive-in theatres popped up across the U.S., with many restaurants turning their parking lots into drive-in cinemas.

And now, with summer approaching, there may be no better idea than taking a nice swim to watch your favourite films.

Next week, the waters of the Seine river in Paris, France, will host an innovative floating movie theatre where people can enjoy films alongside their families from socially distant boats.

Dubbed the “Cinéma sur l’Eau” (cinema on the water) the spectacular event will make its debut on July 18 to celebrate the beginning of Paris Plages, an annual event organized by the city that creates temporary beaches along the Seine and Bassin de Villette every summer.

The free screening will begin at 7:30pm next Saturday as 38 boats, each holding four to six people, will disembark for the event. Each boat will be exclusive to families and closed to strangers in order to comply with physical distancing guidelines, while an additional 150 people will watch from deck chairs that will be available on a first-come, first-served basis, according to Broadway World.

Paris residents will also have an opportunity to win seats on the boats through July 15 through an online raffle.

Viewers will be treated to “Le Grand Bain (Sink or Swim), a 2018 comedy about a group of men who form a synchronized swimming team. Audiences will also have a chance to watch A Corona Story, a short film about the coronavirus pandemic that won a contest organized by movie theatre chain Mk2, which also organized the event alongside ice cream company Häagen-Daz.

“Le Cinéma sur l’Eau” is being held to celebrate the recent reopening of French movie theatres after a prolonged lockdown. Last month, the theatres were able to reopen at 50% capacity after being shut down for three months due to the coronavirus pandemic.

I only have one word – finally!” Emmanuel Delesse, a director of cinema chain UGC, told AFP after the theatres opened in late June.

Paris cinema  5 Caumartin opened with “Les Parfums” (The Perfumes), a French comedy about a prima donna perfume “nose” who devises a number of new fragrances.

Watching series on Netflix is one thing, but the cinema is something else,” said the film’s star Emmanuelle Devos.

As is the case in Hollywood, film studios in France have delayed releasing some of their most high-profile films while film production crews have also faced setbacks in tackling new projects.

However, French cinephiles are expected to flock to theatres to watch some of the classics of cinéma français.

“France is at a real advantage in the world for this reopening because, [of France’s] 6,000 screens, 40% of them are art houses, which means that French people are more than happy to pay for, quote unquote, old films,” said FRANCE 24 culture editor Lisa Nesselson.

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