Archive for November, 2010

Environmentally friendly Turkey?

Despite the fact that its almost Thanksgiving, I’m not taking about turkey the bird, I’m talking Turkey the country! Turkey has put a lot of effort in trying to be come the “world’s most environmentally friendly country” this year as they are in hopes to become part of the European Union. Turkey is working really hard when it comes to the topic of water. They are trying to develop ways to preserve and conserve  water reservoirs. Turkey itself is known to be a country rich of natural resources, especially when it comes to freshwater. Through their efforts, they hope to enhance their natural supplies and preserve them.

It is stated byMaurice Picow from the website, “Green Prophets” that “Turkey hopes to receive between Euro 10 and 15 billion from the EU as part of an estimated Euro 59 billion program for environmental projects, of which 34 billion Euros will be used for water conservation projects alone. These water improvement projects will include recycling of waste water and cleaning up of industrial pollution – a project that in itself is expected to cost at least 15 billion Euros. By undertaking these projects, especially those dealing with water resources, the country will be eligible to receive the EU funding, according to Turkey’s Environment and Forestry Minister Veysel Eroğlu.”

These efforts and causes obviously will cost a big sum of money that Turkey may or may not get. With all the good being done in the country, there are still many issues such as depleting forest land that are extreme issues in the country. There is a long way to go for Turkey’s mission to become the “most environmentally friendly country in the world.”

-Tiffany Thai

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Lean Green Vegetarian Machines

vegetarian-IQGreenhouse gases and global warming is becoming a serious threat to the environment and it’s important now more than ever to change human history. Environmental organizations constantly look for ways to reduce and limit the emissions emitted, but don’t target the leading causes of it. Society is looking past the most logistical, probable, and effective strategy for global warming: vegetarian diets. Temperatures are higher than expected and have been climbing the charter much faster than we ever expected. Consequences of unchecked warming are coastal flooding, disastrous weather conditions, disease spread, and mass species extinctions. Domestic bills and legislation passed through Congress strictly focuses on fuel economy standards, capping emissions, and investing time and funds on alternative energy sources, but Dr. James Hansen indicates that C02 emissions are not the main cause of atmospheric warming. Many other gases trap heat and are evidently more potent and powerful. According to studies, the most important greenhouse gas is methane and is caused most by livestock and animal agriculture. Methane is 21 times more powerful than C02 and methane concentrations have doubled. Coal mining, landfills, and most of all animal agriculture produces more than 100 million tons of methane a year. About 80-85% of methane is produced by emissions from livestock and however comical the situation may be, targeting the root cause of global warming is incredibly important. The best way to reduce global warming is to eliminate heavy consumption in animal products. Simply promoting vegetarian diets and cutting back on meat leads to a reduction of supply and demand efforts for livestock. The overall benefits of vegetarian diets prove to be cost effective, empirically proven to work, and faster than any of the status quo initiatives to win a small battle in a larger war.

-Nicholas Chan

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A soul for your H2O

        Listening to music makes us feel alive, energetic and definitely refreshing. Taking showers also has the same effect. So what would happen if you incorporate both activities together AND be environmentally friendly? Eco tunes developed water saving music player that will help develop a habit for conserving during shower time. The mechanics of this device is quiet simple, there’s a small tube that you’ll plug into your shower sprinkler and a monitor that indicates how much water you’re using. Music will be played as soon as the shower is turned on and when the water usage reaches the recommended amount (35 liters), the music will stop playing and this will encourage people to stop showering when the music stops which in turn, will reduce the amount of water used per shower.

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Algae Awareness

Algae is looking more and more like a potential biofuel that could be used. Using algae is a biofuel could drastically help our environment as well as our economy. Being eco-friendly, “the production of algae utilizes carbon dioxide, thus providing greenhouse gas alleviation.” This positive benefit would drastically improve our ecosytem by reducing the amount of greenhouse gases emitted and would eventually tradeoff with fossil fuels such as oil. Also, it could drastically improve our economy. Enforcing algae biofuels would create a new green workforce that would alleive the unemployment rate. Moreover, it will tradeoff with oil dependence which is a billion dollar expenditure in the United States and by slowing waning off our dependence, we’re able to save money in the long run. However, the biggest barrier preventing algae research and development is a lack of awareness and a fear of spending more in our already teetering economy. However, what Americans must understand is that bit a bit now, could potentially save us billions in the future. Another positive benefit of algae is it’s easiness to produce. Algae can be produced in large bodies of water and the amount of arable land needed is slim to none unlike other biofuels such as corn. With over 70% of the world covered in water, this renewablwe resource can easily be produced and used on a large scale. To ensure a greener future, simply spending a bit now could pose long-term benefits in the future.

-Nicholas Chan

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Sprouting from the ground

            

Wherever there are shoes there MUST be watches to go along with it. A blog was done on environmentally friendly shoes and since there are environmentally shoes, there will be a blog done on environmentally friendly watches. Introducing Sprout’s environmentally friendly watches! Manufactured by E. Gluck corporation, Sprout watches are made of 86% recycled materials such as include a corn resin case and buckle, certified organic cotton strap, bamboo dial, mineral crystal lens and mercury free battery. For only 27 dollars, you can purchase Sprout’s environmentally friendly watch. For the buyer’s convenient Sprout’s watches can be purchased at Amazon.com, Sear’s, Kohl’s and K-mart

~Phil Pham

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Surprising Uses for Fruits and Veggies

The Huffington Post released today a slideshow demonstrating the different ecological and pragmatic benefits of fruit and vegetable peels. A couple of examples extracted from the slideshow are the following: Avocado peels used as “pots” to “start seedlings in”; Citrus rinds and fruit trimmings used for potpourri; Nut shells on plants as a repellent for garden slugs; Cornhusks as a reliable wrap for seafood and freshly-caught fishl; Boiled potato skins with water as hair dye to darken grey hair.

The uses for these acidic-laden and

Pomegranate fruit.

protein rich skins are potentially endless. Not only are they useful for different recipes, they also serve as great aids around the home.

– Silvia

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Aluminum is Greener than Plastic: The Evolution of the Water Bottle

When is the last time that you drank from a water bottle? When is the last time that you recycled a water bottle?

In today’s society, efficiency and cost-effectiveness has taken precedence over environmental concerns: a person would rather throw a plastic bottle into the trash than walk an extra ten feet to the nearest recycling bin.

According to a National Geographic Kids article on Feb. 14, 2008, approx. “for every six water bottles we use, only one makes it to the recycling bin. The rest are sent to landfills. Or, even worse, they end up as trash on the land and in rivers, lakes, and the ocean. Plastic bottles take many hundreds of years to disintegrate.”

So where is the disconnect? Why are people choosing to deliberately pollute the environment when they could simply recycle their bottles?

Because it is not convenient.

GreenBottle™, an aluminum water bottle corporation, is working to make environmentally-friendly acts coincide with “conveniency.” On their website, they provide excellent information on the importance of the green movement, and allow schools to raise funds for their programs through selling these environmentally-friendly bottles. Varying in shape, size, design, and even species (for humans and dogs!), these bottles are an perfect way to recycle, while having a mobile container of the drink you like.

– Cameron Clark

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