Thanksgiving is a time for many of us to gather with family and friends. Your Thanksgiving meal and the activities that go along with it present many opportunities to be sustainable and eco-friendly:
When shopping for your Thanksgiving meal, keep two words in mind: organic and local. These keywords will guarantee a fresher, more nutritious meal.
Set the table with cloth napkins and reusable dishes, glasses, and silverware. Consider renting more formal tableware that you might not use very often. Also save and reuse decorations.
After holiday festivities, put leftovers in recyclable containers, and share them with family, friends, or others.
Where possible, compost leftover food scraps, leaves, and grass clippings.
After the meal, fill your dishwasher to capacity before running it. You will run fewer cycles, which saves energy.
Wash and reuse empty glass and plastic jars, milk jugs, coffee cans, dairy tubs, and other similar containers that would otherwise get thrown away. These containers can be used to store leftovers.
Show your guests where to put recyclables such as aluminum, glass, and plastic beverage containers.
Avoid placing hard, thick, or waxy food scraps down the drain. These materials can clog the pipes or damage garbage disposal blades and send parts of your sink to the landfill before their time.
Buy products in concentrate, bulk, or in refillable containers. Many items are available in these sizes. They reduce packaging waste and can save you money! Combine waste reducing practices, such as buying coffee in bulk and storing it in your leftover empty coffee cans.
Instead of firmly planting yourself in front of the TV for the day, consider getting some fresh air or playing a board game. Take advantage of the time together with friends and family while decreasing your energy usage.
If you going away from home for the holidays, to save energy, turn down your thermostat and put lights on timers.
November is an excellent time of year to conduct neighborhood food or clothing drives to help those in need.
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As the nation’s largest nonprofit environmental law organization, we’re committed to the vision of a just and sustainable future. Join us.
The leaves outside may be red and gold, but autumn is a great time to be green. The Sierra Club’s Green Your Autumn page has plenty of tips, recipes, and a nature slideshow to help inspire you to make the most of the season!
Here are a few fall activities to add to your list:
1.) Visit a farm. Take your family to the nearest organic farm to stock up on pumpkins and apples for Halloween. (Preserve biological diversity by supporting rare-fruit orchards whenever possible.)
3.) Make decorations. Autumn holidays offer a chance to entertain guests and show off your eco-friendly DIY style. Opt for crafts that utilize items you already have on hand or that serve a dual purpose, such as edible table displays.
4.) Take a hike. Gaze upon the brilliant fall foliage as you inhale the crisp, cool air. Or, if your region has more palm trees than poplars, get out there and enjoy the unique sights and smells of your corner of the world.
5.) Winterize the home. OK, this task might not sound as fun as eating a pumpkin pie, but saving money on heating bills during the colder months sure feels good.
6.) Put on a sweater instead of turning up your heat. Fall is the perfect season to feel comfortable in a sweater. So, wait until winter to turn on the heat. Be extra green and purchase a sweater from a thrift or vintage store instead of buying a new one. Recycling and reusing clothes save resources and cuts down on pollution.
7.) Buy Organic Candy and Avoid Palm Oil. SinceHalloween & Thanksgiving both occur in fall, this is the season of sweet treats. We all know kids want candy come October 31st so read the labels on the candy you purchase. If possible and affordable, stick with organic candy that doesn’t contain palm oil or at least uses sustainably grown palm oil. For more information on palm oil, visit The Rainforest Action Network’s website.
1.) Instead of buying a costume that will be worn once & thrown away, make costumes from old clothes & other items you have around the house. You can also get inexpensive costume materials from thrift stores or yard sales, or trade costumes with friends to get something “new” & different to wear. After Halloween, wash & store your costumes for use in subsequent years, trade with friends, or donate the clothing from which they were made to day care centers, homeless shelters, or charities.
2.) Use recycled & recyclable materials to create your Halloween decorations. Bed sheets hung from the ceiling or tree branches make great ghosts & can be taken down, laundered, & returned to the linen closet when Halloween is over. Turn off or unplug holiday lights during the day. Doing so will not only save energy, but will also help your lights last longer. Instead of throwing away your Halloween decorations each year, store & reuse them year after year, just as you do decorations for many other holidays.
3.) Host a Halloween party that features organic, locally grown pumpkins for carving, apples for bobbing, & other pesticide-free, locally grown foods appropriate to the holiday & the harvest season. Set the table with cloth napkins & reusable dishes, glasses, & silverware. Consider renting more formal tableware that you might not use very often.
4.) Once the jack-o-lanterns have been carved & the games have ended, apples & pumpkins can be used in pies, muffins, soups, or other dishes. You can also roast pumpkin seeds & serve them to your guests.
5.) If you don’t already compost, Halloween is a great time to start. You can add post-Halloween jack-o-lanterns to your compost bin, along with fallen leaves, food scraps, & other organic, biodegradable yard & household waste.
6.) When your little ghosts & goblins go trick-or-treating, make sure they carry reusable bags or containers that don’t need to be discarded after they are used. Cloth or canvas shopping bags, or even pillowcases, make terrific eco-friendly alternatives to paper or plastic bags, or to the molded plastic jack-o-lanterns many kids use to collect candy.
7.) When the neighborhood ghouls show up, give them treats that also treat the environment gently. There is a growing variety of eco-friendly candy—from organic chocolate to organic lollipops—available online and from local organic groceries, health food stores, or consumer cooperatives. Choose treats that use little or no packaging. Whenever possible, buy locally produced treats from local merchants.
8.) Rather than drive to other neighborhoods, stick close to home this Halloween & walk from house to house to reduce fuel consumption and air pollution. If you are attending a party, use public transportation or ride your bicycle. If traveling by car is really the only way to join in Halloween fun, try carpooling.
9.) Teach your children to keep candy wrappers in their bags until they return home, or to dispose of them in trash cans along their route. Preventing candy wrappers from becoming Halloween litter on the street is the right way to treat the environment. Take along an extra bag when you take the kids out treat-or-treating, and pick up litter along the way to help clean up the neighborhood.
Happy Vegetarian Awareness Month! If you’ve been toying with the idea of going meat-free, this month is the perfect time to start. Vegetarian diets have proven health benefits, save animals’ lives and help to preserve the Earth.
·Reduce the risk of major killers such as heart disease, stroke and cancer while cutting exposure to foodborne pathogens
·Provide a viable answer to feeding the world’s hungry through more efficient use of grains and other crops
·Save animals from suffering in factory-farm conditions and from the pain and terror of slaughter
·Conserve vital but limited freshwater, fertile topsoil and other precious resources
·Preserve irreplaceable ecosystems such as rainforests and other wildlife habitats
·Decrease greenhouse gases that are accelerating global warming
·Mitigate the ever-expanding environmental pollution of animal agriculture
If you are a vegetarian and want to educate those around you, Vegetarian Awareness Month is a great time to raise awareness and encourage friends and family to join you in adopting a vegetarian diet. Here are some easy ways to do that:
·Make a list of your favorite vegetarian restaurants, or those that serve favorite dishes, for your friends and family—or take them to one of them to see (and taste) for themselves.
·Share some of your favorite vegetarian recipes with your friends and family members. Give them a recipe list, or make them one of your favorites and attach the recipe to it.
·Are you a gardener? Need to get rid of the last of your summer produce to make room for your cool season crops? If so, give those you love a basketful along with recipe and meal planning ideas. Not a gardener? Then shop at your local farmers’ market and give them a basketful from there.
·You can also organize a produce swap. This can be with friends and family or with other gardeners, to increase their awareness about the number of produce varieties to choose from.
If you are not a vegetarian, here are some tips for you:
·Observe Meatless Monday. This is a growing trend, and is a perfect way to kick off the month by eating meat-free for Vegetarian Awareness Day. You can also try to do this throughout the month and have a variety of vegetables to keep your diet interesting.
·Educate yourself about the nutritional benefits of a vegetarian diet and find out the other ways that it can benefit you.
·Go for one whole day as a vegetarian and tell friends and family you are doing this.
·Host a meatless meal or potluck with your friends. This will help all of you get more tasty recipe ideas and become familiar with different veggies.
·When you dine out, try the meatless options and encourage your friends to do the same.
The North American Vegetarian Society is giving non-vegetarians an added incentive to go meat-free. Pledge to go meat-free during Vegetarian Awareness Month and you’ll have the chance to win up to $1,000. Even just one day will make you eligible for the drawing.
Non-vegetarians who pledge to abstain from all meat, fish and fowl will be entered in a random drawing for cash prizes. Click here to find out all the details.
October is National Dental Hygiene Month! It’s the perfect time to make a few eco-friendly changes to your dental routine that will help keep your teeth clean and healthy while helping to save the environment:
Turn Off the Faucet – By turning off the faucet while you are brushing your teeth, you can save up to 8 gallons of water per day, that’s over 200 gallons a month! Conserving natural resources helps to improve the environment around us.
Do Not Flush Floss – It is important to properly dispose of floss. Non-biodegradable nylon floss cannot dissolve in water and will not break down like other disposable products. When floss is flushed down the toilet, it works its way through the water system and out into the ocean, polluting the water and potentially killing birds, animals and sea-life through accidental ingestion. This is avoidable by simply throwing floss into the garbage. You can also purchase floss packaged in cardboard containers, which helps to reduce plastic waste in our landfills.
Try Silk Floss – Floss creates waste if you’re using a brand that is primarily made of out plastic. A great floss to check out is made by Radius and is made out of 100% natural silk. According to their website the silk is organic and biodegradable. So, floss and then toss (it on the compost pile).
Green Your Toothbrush – This is an incredibly easy change to make because more and more grocery stores are carrying options. Check out this post dedicated to this topic called “Green Your Toothbrush! (And Look Good Doing It)” where you can find some really great info!
Recycle/Reuse Toothbrushes, Packaging, Toothpaste Tubes, Mouthwash Bottles and Floss Containers – It is estimated that 50 million pounds of toothbrushes are thrown into U.S landfills each year. Help clean up the environment by purchasing recyclable toothbrushes. Terracycle and Preserve are two companies that offer eco-friendly options to recycle toothbrushes, packaging, toothpaste tubes, and floss containers. You can also reuse toothbrushes around the house for cleaning appliances, jewelry and even your shoes. Before you toss your toothbrush, try and find a creative way you can use it instead.
Unplug Your Electric Toothbrush Charger – It isn’t necessary to charge your electric toothbrush every day, all day. The average brush lasts several weeks between charges and it is usually easier on the battery to not be charged constantly. Maybe you don’t put your toothbrush back on the charger but leave the charger plugged in? When an electrical item is left plugged in even though it’s turned off, it is still very likely consuming some electricity. So to better safe then sorry, unplug that charger!
Turn Off the Lights – When possible, use natural lighting when brushing your teeth. If this is not an option, you can replace old bulbs with CFL or LED lights to help conserve energy.
Slow Down – Don’t brush so hard and be gentle on your gums. It will make your toothbrush last longer, saving you money and reducing waste.
Leave the Car at Home – If possible, walk or ride your bicycle to your dental appointment.
These small changes to your dental routine can make all the difference in helping to conserve energy and natural resources and help clean up the environment.
Tuesday, November 29, 2016 | By 1Thing Admin | No Comments
So you live a green lifestyle all year long. You recycle, you minimize your impact by bringing your own bags and using a reusable cup for your morning coffee, you drive a low-emission car, and program your thermostat….you are set, right? Did you consider ways to green the holidays???? It doesn’t have to be difficult to make a difference!
* An obvious way would be to buy recycled wrapping paper, but you could take it a step further and use your old newspaper, or wrap it in another gift, such as a tablecloth, a scarf or a reusable shopping bag.
* As for the tree, real or fake? Cutting down trees and branches for decorations kills or injures trees, but a lot of the fake pine stuff is made from PVC which is toxic and energy intensive to make the plastic which releases gasses. There are fake pine decorations made from polyethylene which doesn’t carry the same health risks. Or use a potted real tree that can be planted in the spring.
*If you do use a real tree, be sure to give it new life at the end of the season! Mulch it or chip it. For more ideas check out the National Christmas Tree Association (www.realchristmastrees.org) and learn how to recycle it.
*LED lights are easy to find and will use a fraction of the energy that lights used to use. Use a timer for outdoor lights so they don’t stay on all night!
*Try upcycling! Get a little creative and turn something discarded into something usable. Recycle your old candles, jeans, tissue boxes, revamp glass bottles and jars, or turn old cookie tins into new fabulous gift tins. Pinterest.com is full of great ideas, just search UPCYCLE. There are thousands of ideas, surely one will appeal to you and your skill level. Upcycle Candles Glass Bottles and Jars Give cookie tins a new life
*If you do shop, shop local. Support the businesses in your local community and spend less gas driving all over. Art and craft shows are prevalent this time of year and you can support a local artist and give a gift of something thoughtful and artful. Pottery bowls can be esthetically pleasing and functional, or a hand knitted hat is stylish and warm.
*Eco-friendly gifts come in all shapes and sizes. Try gift cards for a group of friends to take a cooking class together. Make some jelly or jam, or bread that can be frozen for later. Be really green and give a worm composter so less food waste goes into the landfill. Try cloth dish towels and napkins as a gift to replace the paper ones. Give a fancy reusable water bottle or coffee/tea travel mug. Be super practical, and give LED bulbs or a blanket for the hot water heater. Reusable shopping bags are handy too! Programmable thermostat. Bus/train passes. Glass storage containers. A basket of nontoxic cleaners. Beeswax candles. Coupons to exchange for your time (ie babysitting or sharing a meal). Donate time to a local environmental group.
* December 30th is National Bicarbonate of Soda Day! Otherwise known as ordinary baking soda, bicarb has so many uses it belongs in every green house. Surely you have used it for your baked goods….but have you tried it as a facial scrub? Toothpaste? Or even deodorant? A paste of baking soda can relieve the itch from bug bites, and putting it in a bath can help relieve itchy skin and help you relax. Use it as a scrub to remove burnt on stuff from your pots and pans, mix it with vinegar to clean your sinks and tub, or even sprinkle it on your carpet before vacuuming to remove odors. And if you overindulge this season, use half a teaspoon in a glass of water to help with heartburn and indigestion.
ENTERCOM GRANTS $1 MILLION IN NATIONWIDE AIRTIME FOR ENVIRONMENTAL DEFENSE FUND PSA CAMPAIGN FEATURING DON CHEADLE
PHILADELPHIA – AUGUST 15, 2016 – Entercom Communications (NYSE: ETM) – Entercom is launching a nationwide public service announcement (PSA) campaign on behalf of the Environmental Defense Fund (EDF), for which the company is donating $1 million worth of free airtime. The PSA will feature Academy Award-nominated actor Don Cheadle discussing the importance of stabilizing the global climate for our children and grandchildren. The PSAs will run across 124 of Entercom’s stations in 27 top markets in the country beginning in August.
“I’m happy to help introduce more people to the great work of EDF,” said Cheadle, a film and television star and climate activist who donated his time to the project. “We’re in the fight of our lives against climate change and EDF has been a real leader in that struggle. So I hope this helps.”
The campaign is part of a larger Entercom initiative, 1THING, committed to promoting good environmental practices both externally among listeners and business partners and internally among employees.
“Entercom is deeply committed to reducing our environmental footprint and working to be a good corporate citizen to help ensure a sustainable planet for our children and grandchildren,” said David Field, President and CEO, Entercom Communications Corp. “We are proud to partner with the Environmental Defense Fund and help support their mission of solving the most critical environmental problems facing our planet.”
“I am grateful to David Field and Entercom for this generous donation that will help build our impact and bring our work to the attention of so many Americans,” said EDF President Fred Krupp. “And I’m grateful to Don Cheadle for the incredible gift of his time and talent. Without this kind of powerful support, we would not be able to do what we do.”
Entercom has previously partnered on PSA campaigns for Conservation International (CI), featuring Harrison Ford; 350.org, featuring Ellen Page; and most recently the Wilderness Society, featuring Dave Matthews, Betty White and Wendie Malick.
Founded in 1967, EDF builds lasting solutions to the world’s biggest environmental problems, finding the ways that work so people and nature can prosper. Learn more at http://www.edf.org.
Entercom Communications Corp. (NYSE: ETM) is the fourth-largest radio broadcasting company in the U.S., reaching and engaging more than 40 million people a week through its 124 highly rated stations in 27 top markets across the country. Entercom is a purpose-driven company, deeply committed to entertaining and informing its listeners with the best locally curated music, news, sports, and talk content, driven by compelling local personalities. Entercom delivers superior ROI by connecting its customers and audiences through its leading local brands and unparalleled local marketing solutions, which include over 4,000 events each year, and its SmartReach Digital product suite. Learn more about Philadelphia-based Entercom at www.Entercom.com, Facebook and Twitter (@entercom).
Wednesday, July 29, 2015 | By Lenny McCoy | No Comments
About 8 million tons of plastic enters the ocean each year. Part of this accumulates in 5 areas where currents converge: the gyres. At least 5.25 trillion pieces of plastic are currently in the oceans, a third of which is concentrated in the infamous Great Pacific Garbage Patch. To find out more about the damage this problem is causing go to www.theoceancleanup.com/problem.
For more than 25 years, Conservation International has been protecting nature for the benefit of everyone on Earth. CI is 900 people in 30+ countries helping to build a healthier, more prosperous and more productive planet, for you and for everyone.
The CI approach is simple, yet transformative. It is based on the integration of three fundamental elements:
1. Protecting natural wealth
The most fundamental aspect of their approach is to protect the places that we cannot afford to lose — the spectacular but vulnerable places on land and at sea that are especially important to humanity, the places that provide our food, water and the air we breathe.
2. Fostering effective governance
The ability to protect our natural wealth can only occur in places where there is a political commitment to do so, where policies support such actions and capacity exists to carry them out. CI works with governments to ensure that they have the knowledge and tools to enact policies that are good for their people, now and for generations to come.
3. Promoting sustainable production
Finally, and in tandem with the first two elements, forward-thinking policies and practices must be in place to promote sustainable production practices. CI works with companies — including those with a big impact in sectors like mining, energy and agriculture — to help make sure that industry doesn’t undercut nature’s ability to support us.
At CI, they measure success in human terms. Their ultimate goal is to protect the most fundamental things that nature provides to all of us: our food, our fresh water, our livelihoods and a stable climate.