Ecosians: drplasticpicker has always liked alien-like names, change your search engine to Ecosia. They plant trees. You become an Ecosian
February 9, 2020
I have been meaning to write this blogpost about 6 weeks ago, but it wasn’t quite the right time. I had just sketched out the title, and the topic has been percolating in my tension-headache-free mind https://drplasticpicker.com/tension-headaches-drplasticpicker-cures-myself/. But yesterday I saw one of my beloved families that I have cared for for over 10 years. They were one of the first families that I was their “pediatrician.” I appreciate them sticking with me because sometimes I wonder how much I knew 10 years ago when I had just finished a research year at NIH and had been mostly doing only endocrine clinical work. I had not looked at tympanic membranes in a long time. I remember thinking, gosh I would rather have a new onset type 1 diabetic patient than a rule out ear infection.
We chatted and caught up, I asked the children how they were doing and the mother asked how mine were. I listened to each child’s lung. And of course my new blog project @drplasticpicker came up. Mother is a nature-lover and animal-protector. Their family 4 years ago went on an epic roadtrip that I still have their typed out itinerary. Mom had given it to me. We are finally going to take that same roadtrip this spring and see the Carlsbad Caverns and White Sands National Park. I am so excited.
And mother asked if @drplasticpicker takes donations, and I was shocked and touched. “No. No.” I said. This blog is completely non-monetized and is really not for profit, and there are all types of tax implications and ethical implications from taking anything from patients. As you know, I’ve talked about the $5 rule for gifts from patients. But I know she was coming from a place of love, and I mentioned instead, “One of the easiest ways to help requires no money. Have you thought about changing your search engine to Ecosia?” Mother had a blank look on her face and had never heard about Ecosia. Neither had I until 3 months ago until my children had informed me about this wonderful Ecosia.
And then the youngest child piped in, “I already did it!” And then what transpired was a lovely conversation. In the parent and child back and forth, this young child told mother that he knew about Ecosia. He had in fact already changed the family’s computers and iPads to the Ecosia search enginge instead of Google. He was going to ask permission from his mother, but just went ahead and did it. He did it for the earth. And then he said, “And no one noticed.” I asked him, “so how many treees have you planted?” He replied the family has done about 2,500 searches. 45 searches is enough for the non-profit to plant one tree. So this little boy has now added 55 trees to the environment, costing his family nothing. If you want to know how this entire process happens, I will refer you to Ecosia’s blog. They are a carbon-negative company, powering their search engine with solar power. They also use all their profits to plant trees and partner with vetted organizations that employ local people to plant trees. They plant native species in an ecologically harmonious manner, and avoid all monocultures. One of their partners is Eden Reforestration Project, and it takes about $0.10 to plant one tree. Compare that to some organizations that tell you they will plant a tree for $1 and send a hipster looking outsider into someone’s Rainforest to “save them” which smacks of imperialism to me. But honestly any tree at this point is better than no trees. Anyway, I think their organization is great and have been following their blog https://blog.ecosia.org/why-carbon-neutral-is-not-enough-ecosia-has-built-its-own-solar-plants/
I have known this lovely mother many years. And I truly care for her. She will never insist, but I always add the sibling onto my schedule if they are also sick. They drive very far to see me from their home, as I had moved clinics in the time we have known each other. I have worried about her like I worry about many of the mothers in my practice, especially when she was working more nightshifts and was getting sick more often. In the ten years I have known them I have never seen a bigger smile on her face than yesterday afternoon! “Well, ” she admonished her son with a big smile. “When you do wonderful things like that, how about letting us know?”
And you my dear Dr. Plastic Picker readers can do something wonderful as well. You can change your search engine to Ecosia and become an Ecosian, and with no cost-to-you help plant trees. Since we changed search engines, I have made 264 searches and planted about 6 trees. Ecosians together have now planted 83,000,000 trees in the last 10 years that this search engine/non-profit has been operating. Spread the word, because Ecoasians are really just Earthlings who realize there is no Planet B.