I am craving good news, and am constantly looking for good news stories. Please send me good news stories you have. Solar power dominates the good news, but wind energy and Ashley Biden are heroes also.
2. China doubled their solar power in 2016. They now have more solar power than any other nation. Read about it here.
3. Ashley Biden, daughter of Vice President Joe Biden, Has her own made in the USA clothing line and donates the profits!
4. Another fun story at Texas A&M. Texas A&M’s bike lane glows due to a solar luminescent paint. It soaks up the sun’s rays during the day and emits light when it gets dark. The lane is also the nation’s first to receive the Federal Highway Administration’s approval for the green coating it used.
5. Wind energy breaks a record. On February 12, a wind power record was broken for the Southwest Power Pool, states from Montana to Louisiana. Over 52% of the electricity for fourteen states was generated by wind power. The entire story: wind power
Please send me other stories of things that are making the world a better place. Thank you.
Earlier this year as I read about China’s pollution problems I thought, “They are polluted because they make products for the United States!” We have exported our jobs, manufacturing and pollution, and some of that pollution is finding its way back across the Pacific Ocean.
There is evidence that China is exporting pollution from their manufacturing back to the United States. China has lax manufacturing standards in every area and now their extreme carbon pollution is crossing the Pacific Ocean to pollute California, Oregon and Washington State.
What about products made in India? Experts have long known that India’s air is among the worst in the world. A recent analysis by Yale researchers found that seven of the 10 countries with the worst air pollution exposures are in South Asia.
Carbon Pollution is a global issue. There are many things you can do and shopping for American made products is one of those things. Buying USA made is green and creates needed jobs here in our own country. I have been trying to do this for over 20 years and it is tough, but I feel better about my purchases. Yes, sometimes it is impossible, but consumer demand can bring some of those jobs and products home.
“According to a recent study, up to 25% of air pollution on the West Coast is floating over from China. Sadly, we’re directly responsible for much of that pollution. The study tied a significant amount of Chinese pollution to the production of goods for export to the United States and other countries.
Of course, the pollution we now know is drifting to our coast comes on top of the pollutants actually in the products themselves and the huge amount of pollution cargo container ships create. According to other studies, the largest 15 cargo container ships create more pollution than all the cars in the world combined, due to the nearly unrefined fuel they burn.
I saw firsthand in China that environmental laws are much less stringent and often ignored completely. Walking outside, the air was so thick it was like I was smoking cigarettes 24/7. In spite of the occasional PR push by Chinese government authorities, the pollution situation just continues to get worse there.
However, “there” is not as far away as it may seem. Sure they are seeing the worst of it, but there is no doubt that pollution is affecting us here the USA as well. In fact, experts already estimate that Los Angeles experiences at least one extra day per year of smog exceeding safe ozone levels because of pollution from China.”
“It’s not shopping in itself that’s so harmful, it’s what we buy,” says information released by Adbusters. “As consumers, we should question the products we buy and the companies who produce them.”
SO, How can we become better consumers? We have incredible power with our consumer dollars. How can we use that power wisely?
Why would you want to reinforce corporate greed with your purchases when we can support local green home grown businesses? This holiday shop where business are trying to do right by our earth and for their employees. Every year I am amazed at the creative businesses I discover…… Imagine all the wonderful small green businesses we could reinforce with our wallets.
Everyone wants to save money, but you are not saving money when you purchase lots of cheap junk that will end up in the land fill next year!. About 8 years ago, I stopped shopping Target, and was surprised by the money saved because I was avoiding lots of cheap products we could live without. One of the best things we can do for our planet is to consume less.
We can use our dollars to support local, green, and homegrown businesses. We can shop for quality and keep dollars in our own communities.
My ten tips for Health4earth holiday shopping:
1. Always shop with your reusable bags, and avoid plastic.
2. Read the labels and ask where products are manufactured. Local craft fairs of handmade items are wonderful for holiday gifts.
3. Shop businesses that pay a living wage and businesses that sell fair trade items.
4. Shop local in your neighborhood, walk or take public transport if possible.
5. Reinforce businesses and restaurants that recycle and do not use styrofoam. I just learned the Mall Of America does NOT recycle bottles and cans.
6. Never buy products for children, including toys, made in China unless you are certain they are chemical free.
7. Avoid purchases from developing countries that lack regulation and enforcement of worker standards such as China, Bangladesh, and India. The closer to home our purchases are manufactured the better handle we have on working conditions and salary. Some countries do not enforce child labor laws! You can be confident “fair-trade” doesn’t have these problems.
8. Purchase for quality and things that will last. A friend’s new apartment refrigerator lasted 3 years, and it was replaced instead of repaired. That must end!!
9. Don’t forget consignment and reuse businesses.
10. Always recycle packaging and purchase products with minimal packaging.
Below are some great sensible businesses that care about our earth and their employees.