Learn From The Past

Bring your own reusable bag

I know people get tired of my harping on plastic, but plastic is a serious world problem. According to the Plastic Pollution Coalition the average shopper uses 500 plastic bags a year, and that is just bags, not all the other plastic products.  This is not sustainable!

I love thinking of how my grandparents lived, and how it is different from today. I loved this post from One Green Planet about what we can learn from the past and from our grandparents. Read it here.

Below is a quote from One Green Planet which show how serious this plastic issue is!

“In the past 30 years alone, the amount of plastic produced worldwide has increased by 620 percent! On average, that equates to 300 million tons of plastic a year. Of this 300 million tons, about 8.8 million tons find their way into the world’s oceans where they are left to slowly photodegrade into smaller pieces – and by slowly, we mean over the course of 100 to 1,000 years. When you consider the huge volume that is added to the oceans every year and the fact that plastics never really “go away,” we find our oceans crowded with a massive soupy mixture of harmful plastic products. This sadly has a massive impact on the marine animals who call our oceans home. Around 700 marine species are in danger of extinction due to entanglement, ingestion or general pollution caused by our plastic trash.”

Our grandparents didn’t have the choices and variety we do.  They cooked and ate hearty food on real dishes, but most important they conserved, reused, and didn’t throw everything away like we do today! I would stay with my grand parents for a week and we didn’t need to run to the store to buy buy buy. We used what we had.

What do you remember about how your grandparents did things?

Even remote islands are collecting our plastic trash

http://www.refillrevolution.com/

https://health4earth.com/2017/02/19/the-horrifying-impact-of-plastic-pollution/

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Resolutions to help You and our Planet to Better Health

“If everyone does a little bit, it adds up to a whole lot!” health4earth

What can you do?
What can you do?

We all need to take some personal responsibility to make ourselves and our planet healthier. Below are some of the things I work for everyday, and I hope you will add a few of them to your 2016 agenda. Please respond with your clean climate ideas.

My series #31daysoflesswaste continues:

1. Buy less stuff, reuse, reuse and reuse the things you have.

2. Stop idling your car, bundle your car trips together to drive less, and carpool more!  Or take the bus!

3. How can I use less electricity?

4. How can I prepare for drought and inundation? Save water run-off by planning and building a rain garden with native plants. http://bluethumb.org/raingardens/

5. Compost food scraps and strive to be a Climatarian. https://health4earth.com/2015/12/28/climatarian-a-new-resolution/

6. Recycle and donate your unwanted stuff “More and more people understand that there is no “away” in the finite system that is planet Earth and that we can’t keep using our precious air, water and land to dump the stuff we no longer want. If something can’t be reused, repaired, refurbished or otherwise repurposed, the next best thing is to recycle it.” David Suzuki  www.earth911.com or donate to your local donation non-profit

7. How can I reduce single-use consumption of plastic bottles/containers, and reduce my consumption of plastic bags?

What do you do for our planet and yourself to be healthier?

Happy 2016!

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Surprising Things About Plastic

Use Glass Containers. I gave these for Christmas gifts this past year
Use Glass Containers. I gave these for Christmas gifts this past year

I continue to try to get everyone to think about the amount of plastic we use in our lives. Below are some ways we can reduce plastic.  When I shop I constantly think how I can avoid products packed in plastic,  and how to reuse any plastic I already have.

Below are some surprising facts about plastic from  Thegreendivas.com  and ecowatch.com

22 Preposterous Facts about Plastic Pollution.
• In the Los Angeles area alone, 10 metric tons of plastic fragments—like grocery bags, straws and soda bottles—are carried into the Pacific Ocean every day.
• Over the last ten years we have produced more plastic than during the whole of the last century.
• 50 percent of the plastic we use, we use just once and throw away.
• Enough plastic is thrown away each year to circle the earth four times.
• We currently recover(recycle) only five percent of the plastics we produce.
• The average American throws away approximately 185 pounds of plastic per year.
• Plastic accounts for around 10 percent of the total waste we generate.
• The production of plastic uses around eight percent of the world’s oil production (bioplastics are not a good solution as they require food source crops).
• Americans throw away 35 billion plastic water bottles every year (source: Brita)
• Plastic in the ocean breaks down into such small segments that pieces of plastic from a one liter bottle could end up on every mile of beach throughout the world.
• Annually approximately 500 billion plastic bags are used worldwide. More than one million bags are used every minute.
• 46 percent of plastics float (EPA 2006) and it can drift for years before eventually concentrating in the ocean gyres.
• It takes 500-1,000 years for plastic to degrade.
• Billions of pounds of plastic can be found in swirling convergences in the oceans making up about 40 percent of the world’s ocean surfaces. 80 percent of pollution enters the ocean from the land.
• The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is located in the North Pacific Gyre off the coast of California and is the largest ocean garbage site in the world. This floating mass of plastic is twice the size of Texas, with plastic pieces outnumbering sea life six to one.
• Plastic constitutes approximately 90 percent of all trash floating on the ocean’s surface, with 46,000 pieces of plastic per square mile.
• One million sea birds and 100,000 marine mammals are killed annually from plastic in our oceans.
• 44 percent of all seabird species, 22 percent of cetaceans, all sea turtle species and a growing list of fish species have been documented with plastic in or around their bodies.
• In samples collected in Lake Erie, 85 percent of the plastic particles were smaller than two-tenths of an inch, and much of that was microscopic. Researchers found 1,500 and 1.7 million of these particles per square mile.
• Virtually every piece of plastic that was ever made still exists in some shape or form (with the exception of the small amount that has been incinerated).
• Plastic chemicals can be absorbed by the body—93 percent of Americans age six or older test positive for BPA (a plastic chemical).
• Some of these compounds found in plastic have been found to alter hormones or have other potential human health effects.

And from Beth Perry, alternatives to plastic:

http://myplasticfreelife.com/plastic-free-how-i-kicked-the-plastic-habit-and-how-you-can-too/   by Beth Perry

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=53h5MjiB3l4

Ten Ways To “Rise Above Plastic.”

  • Choose to reuse when it comes to shopping bags and bottled water. Cloth bags and metal or glass reusable bottles are available locally at great prices.
  • Refuse single-serving packaging, excess packaging, straws and other “disposable” plastics. Carry reusable utensils in your purse, backpack or car to use at bbq’s, potlucks or take-out restaurants.
  • Reduce everyday plastics such as sandwich bags and juice cartons by replacing them with a reusable lunch bag/box that includes a thermos.
  • Bring your to-go mug with you to the coffee shop, smoothie shop or restaurants that let you use them, which is a great way to reduce lids, plastic cups and/or plastic-lined cups.
  • Go digital!  No need for plastic cds, dvds and jewel cases when you can buy your music and videos online.
  • Seek out alternatives to the plastic items that you rely on.
  • If you must use plastic, try to choose #1 (PETE) or #2 (HDPE), which are the most commonly recycled plastics. Avoid plastic bags and polystyrene foam as both typically have very low recycling rates.
  • Volunteer at a beach cleanup.Surfrider Foundation Chapters often hold cleanups monthly or more frequently.
  • Support plastic bag bans, polystyrene foam bans and bottle recycling bills.
  • Spread the word. Talk to your family and friends about why it is important to reduce plastic in our lives and the nasty impacts of plastic pollution

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Do we want a world that looks like this?

 

 

https://health4earth.com/2015/03/31/pick-up-one-piece-of-trash-a-day/

http://ecowatch.com/2015/05/04/plastic-pollution-cancer-oceans/   

Talking Trash Tuesday

Avoid plastic, fill your glass or metal bottles with water or other liquid
Avoid plastic, fill your glass or metal bottles with water or other liquid

Talking Trash Tuesday

Please take a reusable bottle with you today, and say “No” to plastic!

Today I start my new series on trash that should be recycled!  In 2015 there is no excuse that recyclables fill our landfill trash cans.  I am guilting everyone into recycling more. Because this is World Water Week, I am worried about the plastic that fills our water bodies.  Plastic makes up 80% of the trash found in the ocean.   This plastic could be part of the ocean forever breaking into little tiny fragments ingested by fish and other sea life and eaten by us??

From our homes to our workplaces, schools, supermarkets, shopping centers and places in between, plastic is everywhere. But what happens to all that plastic when it reaches the end of its useful life? Some is recycled, while the rest ends up in landfills, incinerators and the environment. A new report by the United Nations Environment Programme — Valuing Plastics: The Business Case for Measuring, Managing and Disclosing Plastic Use in the Consumer Goods Industry — encourages us all to take a more holistic and sustainable look at this most ubiquitous of materials.  http://ensia.com/infographics/how-do-you-solve-a-problem-like-plastic-pollution/

This is an excellent video about the marketing of plastic:

https://www.facebook.com/video.php?v=10153735969475884&fref=nf  The story of bottled water

http://www.theguardian.com/environment/2015/mar/19/prince-charles-calls-for-end-to-dumping-of-plastic-in-worlds-oceans

http://storyofstuff.org/

https://www.facebook.com/pages/Pick-up-One-Piece-of-Trash-a-Day/267910856667805

Trash along the shore of the Caribbean
Trash along the shore of the Caribbean

Health Conscious People Should Avoid

Avoid plastic, fill your glass or metal bottles with liquid
Avoid plastic, fill your glass or metal bottles with liquid

I have written about many of these items in other blogs, and this pulls many of my ideas together.  I could add other items that I believe are harmful such as pesticides, but I don’t want to distract from this excellent essay. The below ideas are from:    http:www.treehugger.com

If you care about your health avoid these:

1. Conventional skin and body care products

2. Junk Food

3. Plastic Containers

4. Non-stick cookware

5. Household cleaners

6. Nail polish and perfume

7. Factory-farmed meat

8. Factory-made clothes from China and other low wage countries

Please view the complete slide-show below:

http://www.treehugger.com/slideshows/green-home/8-things-health-conscious-people-avoid-buying/#slide-top

Use Glass Containers
Use Glass Containers

Precycle This Holiday Season

recycle

“How much waste are you purchasing”  Minnesota Pollution Control

Plastic bottles and plastic bags litter our oceans, lakes, streams, and our countryside.  This is a serious worldwide problem.  What are some ways we can generate less plastic litter and less landfill trash?

 On America Recycle’s Day I am posting my tips to precycle.  When you precycle you make wise purchases that lead to less waste.

Below are my suggestions to encourage precycling, and you might be surprised to find you are already be doing the precycle drill.026

First, always bring your reusable bags shopping, and resist all plastic bags.

Second, choose products that use minimal packaging, and packaging that can be recycled.  Many corporations are making an effort to reduce packaging and offer packaging that can be recycled.  Be sure you recycle as much packaging as possible.

Third, carry your own reuseable water bottle.  The number of plastic bottles I see in008 the trash is shameful!

Always choose glass over plastic
Always choose glass over plastic

Always choose glass products over plastic.  Glass products can be reused, they don’t have the harmful chemicals of plastic and they can be made into new glass bottles.

Fifth, Bulk purchases allow you to get just the amount you need, and I fill my reusable containers with bulk items.  Nuts, spices, oatmeal, tea, grains, beans and laundry soap are great bulk items.  Whole Foods and coops have recyclable/compostable brown paper bags for bulk items.  Placing your bulk items in a “one use” plastic bag negates the environmental advantage of bulk purchases.   010

Sixth, use washable reusable cloth bags for produce purchases instead of plastic bags, and avoid products on styrofoam trays wrapped in plastic film.

Finally, always use cardboard egg cartons. They can be composed or cut up and used as mulch around plants.  They can also be reused/refilled at some stores.

015Recycle everything possible, and return all plastic bags to locations that collect and recycle them.

Please share your tips for precycling

http://terracyclecommunity.com/2013/11/05/5-ways-to-reuse-at-home/

http://www.ways2gogreenblog.com/2013/05/30/how-to-live-green-to-protect-yourself-and-the-planet-earth/

http://myplasticfreelife.com/

http://earth911.com/art-entertainment/plastic-free-life/2  Interview with Beth Terry