Archive for the ‘environment’ Category

Bound

Friday, March 18th, 2011

Bound.jpg

We are all of us bound to something, some one… many things. No matter how far away, we still feel the never ending pull. We try to mask it with white noise, with others, with go, go, go but still there is no severing some ties. We are bound to those we shared a little too much of ourselves with even if we try to pretend otherwise. We are bound to ourselves, even the darkest meanest self-critic within. We are bound to our pasts like rotting roots waiting to crawl through us and petrify all that is good, all we have overcome. We are bound to our sadness, to our will, to our weakened or refreshed strength. We are bound to the strangers around us. We are bound to the person starving or crying or celebrating millions of miles away, the one we may never meet. We are bound to the buildings with the paint chipping off and the glass towers built to last forever. We are bound to the oiled birds of the Gulf Coast. We are bound to the missing in Japan. We are bound to the fabric woven throughout humanity to all its imperfections and to all its beauty. We are bound to everything, and I am bound to you.

Bound to you by Christina Aguilera (from the Burlesque Soundtrack)

Toxic Babies

Monday, June 7th, 2010

Yesterday there was a program on TV about the chemicals and toxic substances that are found in babies at birth or in utero–hundreds! The study was done by Scientists at the Columbia Center for Children’s Environmental Health in New York City who found this,1

The [pregnant] women trudge through the city for 48 hours wearing special backpacks, each with a long tube that is slung over the shoulder. The tube, resting inches below the pregnant mom’s mouth, sucks air into a special filter, giving an approximate measurement of the air that she is breathing. The backpack is designed to measure ambient toxics spewed by vehicles, pesticides, and chemicals from common household products.

“It surprised [us] when we analyzed the air samples [from the backpacks] and found 100 percent of them had detectable levels of at least one pesticide and the air pollutants…”

Disgusting! SO, when I saw this photo today, I thought it appropriate…

(Photo Source: Will Varner at http://willvarner.com/home.html)

  1. http://www.sott.net/articles/show/209976-Toxic-Chemicals-Finding-their-Way-into-the-Womb []

Bravo Volkswagen

Friday, October 23rd, 2009

This is a really good idea. I love it. How fun! I would absolutely take those stairs! I’ll let their videos speak for themselves:

The Fun Theory by Volkswagen.
Pssssst, you can submit your own fun ideas as well! And more than the money they will give you, think of all the people you might help convince to live healthier or more sustainable.

Oh, the Love Bottle…

Monday, May 11th, 2009

In my journey greenward I decided I could not continue drinking water from plastic water bottles–even if I reuse it for a few weeks each time. They are bad for the environment. They are bad for our health. They even say that using plastic water bottles over and over can cause the plastic to break down and plastic is linked to breast cancer and other nervous disorders. So, why take a chance? With my health and with the environment?

The next step was to figure out what to use instead. I don’t want to go plastic–even hard plastic. This eliminates many of the reusable water bottles. I don’t want to go stainless steel because I do not care for the metallic taste that goes along with it.

GLASS! That’s the ticket! I thought I would buy a glass drink and reuse the bottle but before I decided to do that–I thought I’d google “glass water bottle” and guess what?!?!

I found the perfect reusuable, earth-friendly, most adorable water bottles! The LOVE BOTTLE!

love-bottle

Not only are they eco-friendly…but they are sweet. They are feel good products. Here is what the website said about their bottles:

Love bottle is a reusable glass water bottle made partially from recycled glass. It has a ceramic swing top lid that creates a water-tight seal.

Words and pictures carry energy that affect water. Different words can create beautiful water crystals – I like to call it “supercharged” water. Every printed bottle has the word “love” on it, charging your water with the energy of love.

Now, I do not know if I believe words can change the properties of water but it can change a mood, an attitude, a thought. If I am having a bad moment and I get a drink and see “LOVE” on my water bottle…I am likely to smile and remember there are many worthwhile moments. =)

This is the perfect start to my new greener journey. I will let you know what I think about it when it arrives!

Heading North to Green…

Sunday, May 10th, 2009

I have always been conscientious about my affect on my surroundings–people, the environment, even in the simplest, everyday activities such as walking and sitting. I walk lightly. I recycle. If invited to dinner–I bring something and insist on cleaning up. When I visit people, I will offer to take out their trash–play with their children so they can do household chores or run errands. I have even been known to dust for them or rearrange books. I am the one who remembers birthdays–and reminds others. I plant trees and feed birds. I share my car. I upcycle and shut off the water when I brush my teeth. I share books through bookmooch. I buy greeting cards from the Arbor Day Foundation–each one ensures a tree is planted in the National Forests. I buy local organic produce.

I want to leave the earth with as little imprint as possible but I still have a ways to go.

I use paper towels a lot. I love bleach and cotton1. I drink iced tea from starbucks–served in plastic cups2. And I take long showers3 and wash my hands a lot with antibacterial soap–which is both a waste of water and introducing antibacterial stuff into our oceans, rivers and streams.4

I want to make some greener choices. I will start with the cotton I choose to buy. From now on I will try to purchase only responsibly made organic cotton products. I will use less bleach — I am not ready to give it up completely. I am also not at all prepared to give up my antibacterial hand soap. Hahaha… I will re-evaluate this at a later date. I also decided to try Marcal Small steps 100% recycled chlorine-free bleached, no dyes or fragrances paper towels. I had to order them from here because they are not sold in my area yet. I will let you know what I think once I receive and use them. There were other brands of recycled paper towels but they were the brown kind and those bug me for various reasons–also they do not come in select-a-size which I have come to appreciate.

Any ideas on the starbucks iced tea?

  1. http://www.organicconsumers.org/clothes/background.cfm []
  2. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Great_Pacific_Garbage_Patch []
  3. http://www.cnn.com/2008/TECH/science/09/17/water.crisis/ []
  4. http://www.commondreams.org/headlines06/0510-07.htm []

The Birds and the Beast…

Thursday, March 19th, 2009

The Audubon released a report indicating the sad reality for the rapid decline in population of even the most common of birds. Instantly, I cringed. The thought of losing more birds quite literally brings me to tears. I am not a fanatic PETA member or animal loving freak but I can and do appreciate the living beauty that surrounds us. I do appreciate looking out my window and seeing the birdies peck on the seeds I leave for them. Thoughts drift to the Great Auk, the Passenger Pigeon and the Dodo bird—birds we will only ever read about—birds we will never see. Extinction. It is real. It is harsh. And it is happening to all too many species and something must be done.

The fact that even our most common birds are declining drastically should serve as a big red flag warning us of what is to come. People ignore global warming because they think they can. It is a widely accepted delusion that our environment will slowly degrade—that we have many, many, many years until the effects of our actions really catch up with us. However, is it really that simple?

I think not.

Like anything in this world when pushed or bent far enough, something will snap–something will fall over. We are setting into motion things we cannot reverse or control and we certainly do not understand. I think rather than a slow decline, we are going to reach a point of no return, the tipping point–if we have not already. We are going to knock the earth’s ecosystem off balance and we will suffer the severe consequences of doing so. Today it is a 68% average decline of our most common birds, 40% less koalas, 1/3 of the amphibian population currently extremely endangered . Tomorrow, a complete energy crisis. What about in five years time? What then? When will we finally get the picture?

The culprit? Over-population. STOP HAVING CHILDREN. No one wants to say it. It is too complex, too taboo. But if we do not address this issue, the core issue, we will seal our fate and the fate of every species on this planet. We must stop popping out babies willy-nilly when we have no space or resources for them. The United States and all first world countries can do their parts by funding family planning and birth control efforts in third world countries. We must stop the conservative right from fighting against them here. This is so ridiculous.

As I write this the world population reached a smothering 6,767,700,260!!! That is billions folks! BILLIONS! We must find a suitable way to address overpopulation before it is too late, if it is not already. We will bring about the next great extinction–ourselves.

Machiavelli once wrote…

When every province of the world so teems with inhabitants that they can neither subsist where they are nor remove themselves elsewhere… the world will purge itself in one or another of these three ways ‘listing floods, plague and famine.’

We have seen this come to fruition. According to Oxfam, more than four times the number of natural disasters are occurring now than did two decades ago. The religious deem it is the end times as set forth by their bibles and korans. The ignorant chock it up to coincidence. It is the earth purging itself the only way it knows how. The earth is a living organism, trying to survive. There is a balance in every organism that is optimal. We have skewed that balance for almost every living organism we come in contact with — and so goes the Dodo… and so goes the Quagga…and so goes the Irish Deer…and so goes the Cave Bear

And so it goes, until there is nothing left but the beast… and so it goes.