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Opinion: In 2021, let’s work towards the end of the ‘toxic’ journey and the beginning of the ‘slow’ journey | Instant News

Passengers prepare to check in their baggage at the Delta Air Lines counter at Thurgood Marshall Baltimore-Washington International Airport in Linthicum, Maryland, July 12, 2016. The Globe and Mail Rebecca Tucker is a Toronto-based writer. In the 2018 song Tenderness, Andrew Savage of US indie band Parquet Courts sings, “Travel where you are, tourism is a sin.” If you wanted to set a target for lyrics before 2020, there was plenty of room for interpretation. Mr. Savage could have tackled the environmental ills of the global resort complex or campaigned for the basic benefits of supporting local businesses. Now, in the midst of a pandemic, the words seem eerily, distinctly prophetic: stay put or be part of the problem. Travel and tourism has been one of the industries hardest hit by the coronavirus: globally, the industry is expected to lose up to US $ 1.2 trillion. That number could rise to US $ 3.3 trillion if travel restrictions persist through March of this year. Before COVID-19 actually shut it down, tourism was hugely lucrative: in 2019, the industry generated an estimated $ 104.9 billion in Canada alone; in the United States, that number was closer to US $ 1.1 trillion. According to the Canadian Association of Tourism Employees, in 2019, more than 1.8 million people were employed by the industry; worldwide, that number was 330 million. The story continues under the publicity But for all its economic benefits, tourism – as it was just before COVID-19 – was indeed characterized, in many ways, by sin. It was an industry marked by gluttony: Travel was marketed as a proposition of how many places a person can go, what they can see, and how many likes they can get on Instagram, rather that of how it could be nourished by an experience abroad. Consumers were driven by envy, watching the cottage industry of globe-trotting influencers for a fee; marketers then fed off this urge to sell experiences. Travelers coveted cheap flights and last-minute getaways, while the industry coveted a bigger bottom line, no matter what the cost. From the mid to late 20th century, when the proliferation of mainstream air travel opened up the world to middle-class consumers, travel was democratized. And was it good. The ability to engage in hobbies and see more of the world than the blocks surrounding one’s home doesn’t have to be rarefied or exclusive. But democratization quickly gave way to depreciation. Now, with the flood of “digital nomads” and vacationers for sale – that is, those who have embraced travel as a personality, rather than engaging in it as an infrequent respite – has become a plague. of a different kind. And the damage was considerable. At the macro level, the global travel industry is now responsible for 8% of global emissions. On a micro level, travel influencers, to get the most off-the-beaten-path photo, have threatened natural ecosystems by entering areas no-human-friendly, all in the name of salable content (an Instagram account called Public Lands Hate You, dedicated to denouncing this behavior, launched in 2019). The problem is both socio-economic and environmental: in some developing countries, people have been displaced from their homes as tourism infrastructure has been built. The proliferation of short-term rental company Airbnb has led to 31,000 homes being pulled from the rental market in Canada alone, mostly in urban centers, likely contributing to the housing affordability crisis. Some travel agencies have attempted to offset these environmental and social ills by purchasing carbon credits or engaging in a social enterprise. The travel agency where I previously worked, G Adventures, has a nonprofit wing, Planeterra, which works to empower communities by getting travelers to visit (and patronize) restaurants, artisans and other small companies. But in the absence of tourists, these businesses suffer; Planeterra has organized two fundraisers since the start of the pandemic to continue supporting its partner projects. It is now hard not to see these efforts, albeit well intentioned, as myopic. Rather than empowering locals, they have created a dependency on Western tourism dollars among small businesses that may not survive. So where do we go from here? When I think of the future of the travel industry, the post-coronavirus, I think of industrial food. Around the turn of the millennium, food producers, thinkers and theorists began to question the industrialization of food production and asked a question similar to the one I am asking here: can we solve this problem? One solution was to move forward looking back – back nose to tail, farm to table, and reconnect with what we eat. Many of these ideas and practices fall under the banner of a term coined in Italy in 1986: “slow food”. So why not travel slowly? The idea is not new, but its definition is not clear. Slow travel is viewed by some as a practice that emphasizes living like a local rather than the tourist must-sees; others say it literally moves slowly once you reach your destination. In 2019, the online UK newspaper The Independent published an article on slow travel; In it, Justin Francis, CEO of the Responsible Travel vacation company, defined the trend as “more state of mind than velocity… connecting to the soul of a place through its history, its food, its tongue and its people becomes more important than chasing ticks off the bucket list and Instagram Photos. “The story continues under the ad I say we go deeper. We can use the break in the jet set caused by COVID-19 to rethink and reset our tourist habits, moving us towards thoughtful, intentional and, most importantly, infrequent travel. Travel should be considered a privilege, not to the extent that it should be d ‘prohibitively expensive, but rather to the extent that people should consider the social and environmental costs of their travel and act accordingly. Travel, in short, should not be a hobby. It will result in non-tourism. seu more responsible economically and socially, but also more impacting on a personal level. Taking the time to plan a trip can be an exercise in mindfulness, as we consider how it will meet our personal priorities while lessening the negative impact on others. Travel can be used as an extension of our values ​​and lead to a sense of personal growth – the kind that doesn’t come from racking up frequent flyer miles or constantly being on the road just for fun. We will be most affected by the substantial privilege of being abroad if we treat pleasure travel as an anomaly, a break, and an opportunity for improvement. Mr. Savage also has a point to say: “Travel where you are” does not necessarily mean going around the city blocks around your house, or taking a road trip in your province (although these are activities. absolutely valid). It can – and should – mean exploring any destination you want with a fine comb, getting to the very heart of where you are, beyond hot spots and bucket list locations. Once you are there – wherever it is – make the effort to really be there. It all sounds like a little self-help guru, and I think it’s good. This year the world will open up again and, once it does, the travel industry as a whole, and travelers as individuals, should face increased pressure to engage with the world so as to reverse the trajectory of industrial tourism. In 2007, Michael Pollan posed what would become the creed of the slow-food movement: eat food, not too much, especially plants. I propose a remix for 2021: Travel, not too much, always with a goal. Keep your opinions specific and informed. Receive the Opinion newsletter. Register today. .

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New Zealand’s 9 libraries are worth a visit | Instant News

The small Kaukapakapa library is one of the smallest in New Zealand. Photo / Provided.

When Tūranga, Christchurch’s new central library, was inaugurated in late 2018, it quickly garnered accolades and visitor numbers. Its design reflects a global shift, where the library is revised as multimedia


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Most cases of coronavirus are reported in Lahore, Rawalpindi: Rashid | Instant News

(Karachi) Punjab Health Minister Dr Yasmin Rashid said that the highest number of corona virus cases have been reported from Lahore and Rawalpindi in Punjab.

Speaking at a press conference in Lahore on Tuesday, he said that 119 corona patients in Lahore and 113 patients in Rawalpindi were in critical condition.

The health minister stated that if a patient tested positive for corona then another family member test would also be carried out.

Rashid said the data from the summary sent to the chief minister consisted of exploited figures.

He said, “We were told to take swab samples by a cabinet committee. The working group had experts from various universities and they did 31,000 samples, 21,000 of which were carried out in Lahore.”

“Pakistan cannot possibly have a prolonged lockdown,” he said.

He added that people must take precautions. “You don’t know who is suffering from Covid-19. The more precautions you can take, the better.”


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Ontario doctors call for public health measures to remain in place when the province begins to reopen | Instant News

The organization representing Ontario doctors calls on the government to maintain certain public health measures until a vaccine or treatment for COVID-19 is found.

When the province began the reopening process after months of locking due to the pandemic, the Ontario Medical Association (OMA) urged caution, saying that until vaccines were available, there would always be a risk of a surge in COVID-19 patients.

“When Ontario starts planning to reopen, consideration must be given to the fact that jobs and significant losses have brought us to this point of readiness and ongoing efforts and actions are needed for a safe transition to a ‘new normal’,” the OMA said in a report published on Friday.

“What we know from the experience of other countries and viral biology is that we must not be in a hurry. We cannot immediately return – by default – to normal before. Instead, we must make the transition to a “new normal” so that we can control our ability to lift and impose restrictions as needed and avoid potential spikes. “

Given the reopening, the OMA recommends that the following five public health steps remain until treatment for this disease is found.

The first recommendation is that people should continue to use “personal protection measures,” which include physical distance, washing hands and wearing masks in public. The association also recommends that the workplace take turns shifting and allowing employees to work with home if possible.

To reopen, the OMA said the province must also have a strong understanding of “the prevalence of COVID-19 in the population” through proper testing. This includes the capacity to provide and analyze tests for anyone with symptoms of the disease, as well as close contacts, important workers and vulnerable populations.

Temperature checks, OMA said, are not an adequate measure of COVID-19 status.

“The temperature check only shows those who have symptoms and especially symptoms of fever, thus ignoring those who are asymptomatic or have other symptoms,” the report said.

In addition to testing, OMA calls for continued contact tracking of all cases to find and isolate as many close contacts as possible positive patients. To do this, the association said the province might have to employ more trackers or use technology to help support interviews.

OMA wants a “nuanced approach” when it comes to the decision to reopen schools and child care centers. The report says that parents who choose not to return their children to school must be given alternatives.

“Although most children generally have a lower risk of developing severe viral symptoms, some children who have an underlying health condition, as well as some teachers and staff, may be at higher risk. Parents are also at high risk if their children are infected and bring the disease home. “

Schools and most childcare centers in Ontario were closed in mid-March. The decision whether they will reopen for the remainder of the academic year is expected early next week.

Finally, to ensure that everyone works together with public health measures, the OMA says that the government must provide “simple, timely, effective, evidence-based and transparent” communication with the public.

OMA represents more than 43,000 doctors, residents, medical students, and retired doctors.


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Switzerland – Organic farming is growing because the number of agriculture as a whole is decreasing | Instant News

(MENAFN – Swissinfo) Organic farming is growing because the number of agriculture as a whole is decreasing

May 11, 2020 – 11:37

The number of agriculture and agricultural workers continues to shrink in Switzerland, as existing ownership is greater through mergers. Organic farming, on the other hand, is increasingly important. Over the past 20 years, almost a third of agriculture in Switzerland has disappeared. Last year, 50,038 businesses with an utilized agricultural area (UAA) covering 1.05 million hectares employed 150,100 people. This corresponds to a decline in agriculture and employees of 1.6% and 1.5% respectively compared to the previous year, the Federal Statistical Office said on Monday. The cantons of Bern (10,254), Lucerne (4,494), St. Gallen (3,904) and Zurich (3,258) still have the most agriculture, although 142 companies in Bern gave up last year. There were also decreases in Zurich (-88), Valais (-89) and Lucerne (-67). The statistical office said the proportion of agriculture with an area of ​​more than 20 hectares has increased to 43% over the past 20 years. In 1999, only a quarter of agriculture was this big. Organic More agriculture is turning organic. Last year 7,284 worked according to organic guidelines, 3.6% more than in 2018. Organic farming is now practiced on 16% of land. In 2019 the majority of agricultural area consists of natural grasslands and grasslands (605,700 hectares or 58% of the total area). Fertile agriculture is practiced in 38% of the area. In addition, 13,400 hectares are vineyards and 7,000 hectares are gardens. The number of dairy cows (-1.7%) and pigs (-4.1%) decreased, while the number of poultry increased (+ 2.5%). The stock of sheep and goats is practically unchanged.



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