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  • Mark Piazzalunga

    DESERTEC project, Sahara Sun could power Europe by 2050

    By Mark Piazzalunga

    Sahara desert climate is hot and arid, everybody knows it. So how can this simple and well-known fact become the idea to power a continent like Europe? Let’s start from the principle: renewable energy is the future of energy; we assume that this sentence is true since all facts gets to this point. Second principle: European territory is restricted and allows the construction of a few plants that could use renewable energy. Paradoxically, countries like Africa have renewable sources, particularly solar, in abundance but scarce funds to make the best of these resources. Now find the connection. Is it possible to produce huge amounts of solar energy in Africa and transport them to Europe through energy infrastructures? Apparently yes, according to DESERTEC project developers and supporters. And what is DESERTEC? It’s an initiative of the Club of Rome (a global think tank that has its headquarters in Switzerland) started in 2009. Directly from the official website of the project (Desertec.org): "The DESERTEC concept was developed by a network of politicians, scientists and economists from around the Mediterranean, from which was born the DESERTEC Foundation. Demonstrates a way to provide climate protection, energy security and the development of sustainable energy generation from sites where renewable energy sources are at their most plentiful." In practical terms? Connect renewable energy power plants in Africa to Europe through a network of HVDC (High Voltage Direct Current) systems. The Foundation target is to build several renewable power plants of various types (mainly wind, photovoltaic and solar concentration) throughout North Africa. To support the project financially, the Foundation and other 12 companies (including Deutsche Bank, E.ON, RWE and ABB) created an industrial initiative: Dii GmbH. The construction project would continue until 2050 and for that date, the cost is estimated at € 400 billion, which means $ 546,720,000,000, approximately seven times Bill Gates’ fortune. It’s little bit expensive (life on Mars seems cheaper) but the entire network could provide Europe with the 15-20% of electricity that it needs. We must also consider the drastic decrease of pollution, direct effect of the project. This project isn’t just an idea but it seems an accurate and long-term plan. This could be an opportunity to connect two continents and to give them economic opportunities and jobs. There could be some problems like the wars and the instability of some of North Africa countries or how to get all 40 nations to agree to an arrangement for subsidizing the green electricity. There’s also the possibility to build the plants in Europe, just $ 54 billion more, and doing some math it brings to a shocking number: €2 per citizen per year to keep tens of thousands of jobs in Europe -- and to prevent Europe from becoming dependent on foreign countries for its electricity. Well, the project just started and it has the funds to go forward. We can't wait to see the results. Photo from Desertec.org
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  • Joseph Ramondeli

    Black Friday Promotes Over-Consumption and Waste

    By Joseph Ramondeli

    Black Friday Promotes Over-Consumption and Waste               Every year Thanksgiving weekend is overshadowed by Black Friday and in recent years Cyber Monday as well. Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time when families can get together, even if it’s just for a day or dinner, to talk and reconnect. However every year more American’s are focused on shopping. Stores are now open by 8:00 pm on Thanksgiving Day resulting in people sitting at the dinner table with their families while browsing on their phones for the best deals that they hope to buy in a few hours.  This is just another example of how our modern, technologically advanced society is constantly becoming more materialistic. Aside from Black Friday overshadowing an American holiday and tradition, it is an annual example of how Americans over-consume and by doing so are very wasteful.  A huge fraction of purchased goods during Black Friday and Cyber Monday are things that people don’t need, they are things they think they need. Advertisements and social trends play a big role in the impact of this event (I refuse to call it a holiday) and in our consumption behavior in general.             Companies are tricking and forcing us to buy un-needed goods through the use of planned obsolescence and perceived obsolescence.  Planned obsolescence is disappointing because it refers to how companies purposely make products to only last a few years and by doing so force consumers to by new products from them every couple of years. The most common example of this is electronic devices. Apple creates a new IPhone every year so that once yours break “accidentally” there’s a brand new, more expensive one to purchase as a replacement. Not to mention that such companies stop making old models, forcing you to buy the newest model. On the other hand, perceived obsolescence is promoted by companies but ultimately results from our own social actions. Companies, through advertisements, constantly throw the promotion of new goods in our face. It’s almost impossible to go anywhere or do anything without seeing an advertisement of some sort. These advertisements tend to increase around the holiday season, hence the origin of Black Friday. The main reason such advertisements work is due to the social pressure we put on each other and ourselves. Everyone wants the next new model or brand and once a friend or family member purchases something then we are pressured and attracted to buying it as well. The biggest example of this is the fashion industry, where new trends come and go each season resulting in constant purchasing of new, unnecessary clothing. These companies are clearly getting the better of us based on the success of such events as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.             So why is over-consumption such a bad thing, why should we care if people waste there money on unnecessary goods? It’s simple: overconsumption leads to waste! One of the downfalls to the technological advancements of today’s world is that we create materials that cannot be found in our natural world. This means that when we throw something out in the garbage it will never decompose. Purchasing many of today’s consumer goods is bad enough because most cannot be recycled and will sit in landfills, but over-consumption takes this once step further in that we buy more than we need! We buy new clothes or new phones before our old ones are worn our or broken. By doing so we are creating more waste because we constantly thrown away products that are still functional and contribute the ever-growing amount of waste humanity has created on this planet. In order to help reduce the waste we create of course we should recycle and reuse as much as possible. However, I believe that the creation of waste should be stopped at its source, and that’s our consumer purchasing. Buying less and using goods to there fullest is a sure way to decrease waste. Resisting social pressure and advertisements is key to getting this accomplished. So next year put the phones away and turn the TV off at the dinner table during Thanksgiving, you don’t need them. Joseph Ramondelli  
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  • Megan Bonetti

    Conferencing Climate Change: Teamwork or Tug-of-war?

    By Megan Bonetti

    India. Culture, cows and rubbish. As an Aussie living for a short time in India it is such an intriguing country. Indians love their diverse nation yet they use the streets like rubbish dumps. Even my friends here tell me it’s ok to throw my paddle-pop wrapper out the car window. I can’t… so I just hold it tight and wait till I get home. Growing up in Australia, those ‘emu hunts’ in primary school have willed my littering days away. Yet I suspect that even my household trash bin will just be dumped across the road for the cows to eat or worse still, burnt on the street…for the cows to eat. This is India. Love it or hate it. (#tii) As an Australian social worker volunteering with an NGO in Southern India I witness the large divide between the rich and poor of this incredibly colourful nation. I work with many children whose whole families have had to migrate from various parts of India due to the rapid effects of drought on their land and the significant urbanisation of major cities in the last 10 years. It turns out India has seen a boom in it’s industrial and technological trades a little later than it’s western neighbours and they are loving it. But India’s urban boom is threatened with westerners telling them they have to stop producing and polluting. The earth doesn’t like it. Sorry India…We made our big capitalist bucks, but you don’t get that chance. Just when things are getting good and you’re developing astronomically, your main source of energy is being taken away. It turns out fossil fuels are the cheapest form of energy for the developing world, especially as they try in earnest to develop the same standard of living as we have. So as one the most formidable countries in the developing world, India not only has the pressures of navigating a massive population but also has to figure out how to go green on the cheap. It’s interesting that the Turnbull government has reluctantly agreed on a 5% reduction in carbon emissions in the next five years. “Phew! Glad we got through that one boys.” They wipe their sweaty brows while developing countries are drowning, burning and trying to survive on scant resources. These countries are just trying to make a crust, while Eurocentric nations are slowly turning a baguette into organic multigrain sourdough (and throwing the crusts to their hobby cows). If the 2015 United Nations Climate Change Conference in Paris is truly the last attempt for international cooperation, leaders cannot just show and tell their contribution and sit back with folded arms. But how can mere human individuals promote serious teamwork? This brings me back to the children I work with here in India. Every day their parent’s lives are tied to corrupt building associations. They are bonded labourers—gypsies moving from construction to construction. These families have no hope of returning to their now desolate homeland and are not provided social security measures that protect their livelihood. Then there is India’s neighbour, low-lying Bangladesh, experiencing saltwater intrusion that poisons whole water supplies for entire villages. In our own backyard we see Australian farmers shooting all their cattle only to turn the gun on themselves under the shadow of unprecedented drought. This is human impact. Global warming is not just about penguins and polar bears. Climate change is a social justice issue. We live in a globalised world. The industrial revolution brought us here; and climate change is the consequence. No longer do we just neighbour cities, we neighbour nations. The leaders of Australia must be held accountable to all their neighbours including the ones just trying to keep their head above water. It simply won’t do for wealthy nations, such as Australia, to show the world their own country’s carbon reductions and sit back down. This summit can’t work as a set menu; it has to be a potluck dinner, a time for sharing, understanding and safeguarding. For the sake of our beautiful earth and the many diverse cultures of the human race, this time I hope and pray that the leaders of the world provide a resounding voice for the marginalised. This summit and our government must not stop at figures, but uphold the basic democratic and human rights principles that cradle modern society. The United Nations was created so that man-made and worldwide calamities could no longer grasp our world with such authority. Well, it turns out a world war with Mother Nature is knocking on our doorstep. Will we listen and respond? I hope so.   For more information please visit the below links. They offer great insights into climate change realities and are positive and accessible resources for engaging the conversation. The reality of climate change | David Puttnam | TEDxDublin https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBjtO-0tbKU India: Climate Change Impacts http://www.worldbank.org/en/news/feature/2013/06/19/india-climate-change-impacts Climate Change and the End of Australia http://www.rollingstone.com/politics/news/climate-change-and-the-end-of-australia-20111003 The Critical Decade: Climate Change and Health (Australia) http://www.climatecouncil.org.au/uploads/1bb6887d6f8cacd5d844fc30b0857931.pdf GoPro: Climate Change and the Optimistic Future https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sT6jtTtsG_M Paris Climate Conference: COP21 Explained https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1-qd8YCaoQ4 Why is the Paris UN climate summit important? https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=lnztR5JllA4 Adam asks new PM Malcolm Turnbull on climate change in Question Time https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cqXtKt-Is54 Morgan Freeman's Powerful Climate Change Short Film https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8YQIaOldDU8  
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Our community blogs

  1. flowers-to-gurgaon

    Flowers are meant to make any celebrations truly amazing and magnificent. You can send flowers to Gurgaon online or in any other place to give a unique look and feel to any celebration. The company is known to deliver fresh fragrant flowers to its customers for occasions like birthday, marriage anniversary, office promotion, farewell and other events. Customers have the freedom to choose any flower types based on their preference and the type of occasion.

    The company has the stockpile of blooming fragrant flowers that are available in multiple colours, floral arrangements and bouquet styles. Customers can choose the flowers such as roses, tulips, sunflowers, daisies, lilies and other varieties that can be delivered anywhere in India and other countries with the support of its express delivery services.

    Avail the flower delivery in Gurgaon, Noida, Delhi and other cities of India and abroad in a time bound manner. Speaking for the development, the company officials reiterated that “Flowers are a part of every other celebration and the company is working to deliver them anywhere to its customers in India and other countries through its express shipping services”. Get the desired flowers at the doorstep from a wide coverage network of express delivery services.

    The company is committed to deliver fresh fragrant flowers to its customers in a time bound manner. It can offer the best flowers that will reach the destination without getting wilted. Customers don’t need to search for any florist shop as people can send flowers to Gurgaon online with this online florist shop.

    So, avail the flower delivery in Gurgaon and other places in India or abroad through the time bound express delivery services.

    A well-known name in the domains of sending online flowers, cakes and gifts delivery to make every occasion truly memorable. The company is capable to deliver the orders anywhere in India and overseas through its reliable express delivery services.

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    Navigating in the 21st Century: Where To?

    When you go on a road trip, what do you use to navigate? Google Maps, a GPS system, maybe a printed map of the area? How about a map printed in 1776? Probably not - there have been so many changes since then that it wouldn't be an accurate guide, and you might not reach your intended destination.

    The Map

    In a way, we are using an old map in our economy when we use the concepts and practices originally set out by Adam Smith in "The Wealth of Nations", published in 1776,1 which formed the basis for the market economy model of economic transactions.

    It's not a matter of the principles being "wrong", it's that there have been significant changes since 1776 and new information needs to be incorporated into our economic framework so that it reflects the realities of the world today, and better guides our choices for the long term.

    Then and Now

    In 1776 our impact on the world was a tiny fraction of what it is today. The world population was short of a billion (about 900 million)2 and the Watt steam engine was just beginning to power the Industrial Revolution in Europe. The combined rise of powered industrial technology and human population since then has hugely expanded our ability to impact the world around us. Today over 7.3 billion people3 need food, water, shelter and other resources; projections for peak human population are in the range of 9 to 10 billion4 , and the technologies to extract and process natural resources into products have expanded along with population.

    As products were made and sold in 1776, there were adverse impacts, and costs were incurred that were unknown, thus not considered as Adam Smith created his economic model. For instance, air pollution from coal-burning engines began around that time, but it wasn’t recognized as being harmful to human health. In contrast, a recent World Health Organization report estimated that around 7 million people died in 2012 as a result of global air pollution exposure5. Similarly, other forms of pollution and various other adverse impacts occur, and these costs are often not reflected in the accounting of the businesses which cause pollution as they manufacture and sell their products.

    Incentives and Externalities

    Logic and ethics might suggest that the costs of adverse impacts from the making of products be added to the books of the firms making and selling those products. For example, those cost figures could be for pollution abatement equipment, installed to prevent or reduce the health impacts to people downwind from the plant. More commonly, these kinds of costs are incurred by the public, and measured by public health agencies, in terms of hospital visits, reduced productivity and premature deaths.

    One of the primary tenets of the market system is that the purpose of a business is to maximize profits for investors and management. This is typically done by maximizing sales and profits, and in order to maximize sales and profits, and to maintain a competitive pricing position in the market, production costs must be minimized. So businesses have a fundamental disincentive to add to their costs, including the costs to public health and the health and productivity of natural resources, both of which have been left out of the market model and are referred to as “externalities”. Protecting the public interest is not the function or purpose of business; this is the responsibility of the representatives we elect to govern in the public interest.

    Natural Capital

    Another development not envisaged when the Wealth of Nations was published was the depletion of natural resources, sometimes to the point of species extinction. This is reflected in the following statement from “TEEB - The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity: Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature”:

    “The invisibility of biodiversity values has often encouraged inefficient use or even destruction of the natural capital that is the foundation of our economies.” 6

    Consider the example of the Cod community population, a rich fishery around the Grand Bank in the North Atlantic Ocean. In 1950 there was a total population of about 2.5 million metric tons; by 2000 the population was down to around 0.25 million metric tons – a 90% reduction in population7. U.S. and Canadian fisheries agencies coordinated to manage this valuable natural resource and prevent the extinction of Atlantic cod. The same story has played out in the Chesapeake Bay with the oyster population, which is estimated today to be about 1% of the population that existed when Europeans arrived in the 17th century8. Why were these resources so overfished and jeopardized?

    From a business perspective the market economy is based on competition and individual decision making, so each fishermen seeks to maximize their catch, not to manage a regional fishery resource. There is no provision for rational, science-based natural resource management within the market economy. The actions of individual producers and consumers pursuing their self-interest determine resource utilization, and left to the mechanisms of the market will consume the resource if the demand is high enough.

    Buyer Beware

    This is rational for each individual fishing company and consumer, but collectively the result is irrational. The market economy does not address the combined effects of individual actions. So despite the litany of comments from some business leaders, and, not coincidentally, some politicians, that government is wrong to “burden” companies with regulations, it is clear that the incentive structure of the market model needs to be updated to incorporate “external” costs and to protect ecological and human health in the public interest. From the TEEB study, what is needed is:

    “To recalibrate the faulty economic compass that has led us to decisions that are prejudicial to both current well-being and that of future generations6.”

    Consider an example of making a rational decision on public health, in the public interest. If you take steps to reduce air pollution in compliance with the Clean Air Act, it will cost up to $65 billion a year by 2020. The benefits of these steps have been estimated at $2 trillion per year9. That’s quite a return on investment - what would you do? What would be rational?

    Predictably, a relentless sales campaign by the vested parties of the status quo uses the tools of modern advertising to push emotional buttons and manipulate public opinion. Words like “freedom”, “individual liberty”, “God-given right”, “consumer choice”, “big government”, “extremists” and “socialists” seek to portray any efforts to support and protect the interests and well-being of the public at large as un-American, or worse.

    It’s ironic, and cynical, to consider such messages, when more and more of the benefits of our work – profits – are going to fewer and fewer very rich and politically connected people. It is undermining the very foundation of proportional representative government (votes) with vast sums of money. Lobbyists, lawyers and unlimited corporate campaign contributions are powerful tools with which to defend the status quo, on behalf of less than one percent of the population.

    Adam Smith considered the importance of human motivation in establishing his model of a system of economic transactions:

    “It is not from the benevolence of the butcher, the brewer or the baker that we expect our dinner, but from their regard for their own interest”

    Adam Smith, “The Wealth of Nations”, 1776, p.24.

    Certainly this is an important truth, one with deep roots in our survival instincts. Another important truth is that for humans, survival and success in evolving and expanding has been based on our social nature and the power of groups to accomplish things that single individuals cannot. Specialization of activities, which is the prerequisite for exchanges and economy, requires the interdependence and coordination of individuals within the group, and a balance between the needs of the individual and the needs of the group.

    By the 1980’s, Mr. Smith’s notion of self-interest had morphed into something else:

    “Greed … is good”

    Gordon Gekko, in “Wall Street”, 20th Century Fox, 1987

    Fooled Again?

    Nature is the foundation of our continued existence. Natural capital is the foundation of our economies. Short term greed and willful ignorance are serious threats to our current and future well-being. Business as usual is not a viable option. United (and diverse) we may stand, if we can agree on the fundamentals of how to live together, in accord with nature.

    Jack F. Brennan, 2015

    References

    1. http://www.econlib.org/library/Smith/smWN.html
    2. http://ourworldindata.org/data/population-growth-vital-statistics/world-population-growth/
    3. http://www.prb.org/pdf14/2014-world-population-data-sheet_eng.pdf
    4. http://www.un.org/esa/population/publications/sixbillion/sixbilpart1.pdf
    5. http://www.who.int/mediacentre/news/releases/2014/air-pollution/en/
    6. TEEB (2010) The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity: Mainstreaming the Economics of Nature: A synthesis. http://www.teebweb.org/our-publications/teeb-study-reports/synthesis-report/
    7. http://ram.biology.dal.ca/~myers/depletion/
    8. On the Brink: Chesapeake’s Native Oysters http://www.cbf.org/document.doc?id=523
    9. http://www.epa.gov/cleanairactbenefits/feb11/summaryreport.pdfnav21.pdf
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    Recent Entries

    Thanks to our modern, busy lives, many of us experience health problems related directly with stress or improper lifestyle habits. The choices we make every day impact our health greatly and by making few simple adjustments, you can start living more productive and most importantly healthier life! Just follow these easy tips and you will start to feel the difference in just few weeks:

    #1 Try to Avoid Driving

    With most of us working stuck in offices most of the day, in front of a computer, the lack of exercise can cause quite a lot of health problems. A simple 15-20-minute walk can change everything and also since you will not be using your car, you are actually contributing to preserving the environment.

    #2 Go for Green Foods

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    The local supermarkets are often filled with quite a variety of green foods, but many of them are not seasonal thus imported or grown in orangeries. Experts advise to always go for seasonal greens - these are packed with the exact vitamins and minerals you need during the particular time of the year.

    #3 Grow Your Food

    You don’t necessarily need to have a yard, you can place few pots in the kitchen and grown your own herbs or even vegetables. As simple as it may sound, growing your own crops can be beneficial for your health in many ways, plus you will always know what you eat.

    #4 Learn More About Herbs

    Herbs contain large quantities of important vitamins and minerals for your body. They can be combined with one another to deliver not only great taste for your meals, but a bunch of supplements you can’t get into your body. Once you try cooking your favorite meals using fresh herbs, you will never want to change this!

    #5 Get Comfortable Shoes

    Shoes are a lot more than just a fashion accessory – comfortable shoes can increase your energy and help you feel much better when walking or exercising. Furthermore, many studies show that a pair of comfortable shoes seems to be quite an effective weapon against fatigue, a lot better than coffee for example.

    #6 Garlic 101

    Garlic is part of the everyday meal of humans for thousands of years, there are even studies that suggest the same people, who built the pyramids ate it on daily basis. With incredibly effective antibacterial properties, the garlic is the ultimate weapon against common colds and other health problems, common mostly for the winter season. Small amounts of raw or lightly cooked garlic can do miracles with your overall health!

    #7 Have a Casual Conversation

    Multiple studies conducted over the past few years suggest that casual conversations are great for maintaining focus and even help preserve memory. Take just 10 minutes to sit down and have a casual conversation with a friend!

    #8 Drink More Water

    Our bodies are made mostly from water and due to our modern lifestyle, many of us forget to drink sufficient amounts of water every day. Drink between 6 and 8 cups of water every day to ensure your body is properly hydrated. This has incredibly positive impact on many body functions and can greatly improve your overall health!

     These 8 green tips can do wonders for your overall health, but remember that its always necessary to consult with a general practitioner, like BroadGateGP.

  2. Hair health is of utmost importance; not only for women but men too. So, if you are looking for ways in which you can make your hair healthy, here is an option that should help you.

    Apple cider vinegar is a remedy traditionally used in keeping one’s scalp and hair healthy. It is a proven method, and you can expect it to be a cost-effective method to have healthy hair. One can easily prevent dry scalp, dandruff and itching with the help of apple cider vinegar. Opting for organic apple cider vinegar is a great idea.

    Vinegar is considered to be a good solution in this case because it can control the growth of fungi and bacteria that often clog the hair follicles. These hair follicles are found where the hair grows.

    Apple Cider Vinegar benefits is even used as a food preservation health remedy and as a remedy for cosmetic problems in the skin. Improving and maintaining scalp health is possible with the help of apple cider vinegar.

    This is a remedy that also helps because it contains antiviral, antifungal, anti-bacterial and anti-inflammatory properties that often assist in the prevention of various infections that cause hair loss. Also, it helps in maintaining the pH balance of the scalp. This prevents the scalp from infections and dryness. So, it is a good idea to opt for apple cider vinegar to be sure that your hair is healthy.

    Another interesting fact is that vinegar contains essential nutrients like iron, potassium, Vitamin A, C, B1, B6 and many more that can help in maintaining your hair’s health.

     

    One of the ways in which you can use vinegar to prevent itchiness and flaking and also keep your scalp healthy is to opt for a vinegar rinse.

    If you want to treat itchy or dry scalp and hair problems, you should use plain white vinegar or apple cider vinegar.

    A less known fact is that if you want to prevent scalp buildup, one can use apple cider vinegar for the said purpose too. Shampooing helps, but to make the process extremely effective, you should opt for an apple cider vinegar rinse. It will help in removing scalp buildup effectively.

    Want to know more about it? You can think about books that are written on this topic. So, make sure that you learn more about it and make the most of the advantages you can enjoy at the store. Target.com is a place where you can get such informational books. So, visit Target.com and make sure that you enjoy discounts at the store while looking for some of the most exciting discounts that can be enjoyed with the help of promo codes. Promo codes are good, and you should find exciting for Target coupons codes available at popular third-party sites. Look for the expiry dates too before choosing a promo code.

    Apart from this, how do you think apple cider vinegar help in improving one’s scalp and hair health? Share your views in the comments.

    apple-cider-vinegar-for-scalp.jpg

  3. This year, we have been thinking a lot about how to be more eco-friendly. We know that we can turn off lights when we leave the room, walk rather than taking the car where possible, and avoid products which use a lot of plastic packaging. But what can we do at Christmas time to be better for the environment? Here are some tips.

    0MEg3Zg.jpg

    Shop local

    Every product which is imported, from your presents to your tree to your food on the table, has a carbon footprint. If something has travelled overseas then it needs to either fly or come by truck over a ferry, neither of which are great options. In order to reduce the carbon footprint of your Christmas, you can try to shop locally. This will also help to grow your community and support local businesses, which is a great bonus. While you might not have farms supplying everything in your locale, you can at least choose things which have been produced within your country.

     

    Choose your tree

    SPGLHBd.jpg

    Make sure that you are getting your tree from an eco-friendly source if you are buying a real one. You should be able to check how the tree is grown and whether or not it is done in a sustainable way. If you are going the plastic route, buy a tree for life. Don’t throw it away after one year – plan to keep it for 20 or 30. This will offset the carbon cost of making the tree because of the amount of use that you get out of it. When you do get rid of your tree, try to recycle it or donate it to charity rather than just throwing it in the bin.

     

    Send green

    If you have gifts that must be shipped out, then make sure that you do it the green way with PACK & SEND. They have practices in place which mean that your carbon footprint will be reduced by using their services as opposed to a postal service. Think about the way that you package your gifts, too. Do you really need all those layers of cardboard and bubble wrap, or would a smaller parcel work just as well to protect the gifts?

     

    Change your bulbs

    plKvduR.jpg

    Make sure that your fairy lights aren’t draining your electric bill and putting a strain on the environment! Pick out a set with more eco-friendly bulbs and both will be improved. LED fairy lights are a good choice as they take less electricity to run and don’t cause any heat, which makes them less of a fire hazard. It’s also fun to sit with only the lights of the tree in the evening and turn off your main lights, which will save a lot of energy! Try to watch your energy usage in general – could you turn off the television and play board games together, for example?

     

    Remove food waste

    When doing your shopping before Christmas, try to be more realistic about what you actually need to buy. So much food is wasted every year because we make such big feasts which are not actually eaten. When you have vegetable leftovers that can’t be used, try to turn them into compost or feed them to a pet. Eat up leftovers where possible. If you can’t get rid of all of your food, you may be able to find a nearby shelter which takes spare food donations.

     

    It’s easier than you think to have a green Christmas. Just think about reducing waste and shopping local, and the rest will fall into place!

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    For people who have become more conscious of what goes into what they eat, the good news is that an escalating amount of food manufacturers are proposing organic options, making organic food one of the fastest-growing sectors of food production in the United States. The bad news is that all of those options can be uncertain, especially when factoring in food made without GMOs (genetically modified organisms). Some people could be trying to eat an all-organic diet, and others may simply be trying to dodge GMOs. Although foods may be labeled as USDA-certified organic or Non-GMO, consumers may not understand the difference. In some cases, there is an overlap between the USDA Organic and Non-GMO labels, but there are some key differences consumers should be aware of when trying to make the distinction between organic foods and foods made without GMOs.

    Normally, foods with the USDA Organic label have been manufactured without the use of GMOs as well as other standards that certify that the food has been produced with at least 95 percent organic ingredients. Foods that have been labeled as Non-GMO, on the other hand, only need to meet the criteria that they contain less than 1 percent of GMO content. Foods certified as Non-GMO may have been exposed to fertilizers or chemical pesticides, animals may have been subjected to hormones or antibiotics, and livestock may not have been fed using 100 percent organic feed. In short, all USDA Organic certified foods are Non-GMO, but not all Non-GMO certified foods are organic.

    The inflated variety and selection accessible at the grocery store today may be more confusing, but anyone who is concerned about what goes into their favorite organic chocolate brands will need to know the difference between the labeling and what the labels mean. The following chart helps delineate the differences between USDA Organic and Non-GMO labels, so review it the next time you check the labels on your favorite snacks.

    Check out the useful infographic that spray drying company, PacMoore has created below:

     

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  4. I LIKE GREEN ENVIRONMENT

     

    Under the effect of solar radiation, trees will absorb water from the soil, heat-absorbing solar radiation and absorb carbon dioxide from the air to conduct continental shale and release of oxygen gas. very useful for human health and reducing air "greenhouse". So considering not planting trees on unused land, the air temperature in the lower daytime trees from 1-30C, oxygen content in the atmosphere is greater than 20% and less CO2. During continent of green chlorophyll absorbs solar radiation, absorbs the heat should have the effect of reducing the harshness of hot days, reduced reflection of solar radiation on the building, reducing the temperature does not Gas under the trees and can increase air humidity from 2% - 5%, increase air humidity is also beneficial for hot dry day.

    - Trees capable of storing rain water on the plant part, keep the spongy ground with tree roots penetrate the ground to help rainwater penetrates quickly into the ground, reducing flooding situation in the municipality. It is through this feature that in the midlands and mountainous, forest green harmonic effects of rainwater, reducing soil erosion, reduce flood overflow, flooding, flash flood kizi new.
    - When the wind blows through the trees air, dust content in the air will be the leaves retain most, make the air cleaner. Increasingly dense trees, leaves more rugged than the dirt easier grip. When the leaves were dusty, rain will wash the leaves and the leaves will keep dust adsorption cycle. The total amount of dust is hang on one tree with large leaves, thick could reach between 10-30kg. The concentration of dust in the air blowing through the trees can be reduced from 20-60%.


     - Trees absorb potentially harmful contaminants in water and in soil, especially to absorb and hold permanent storage of heavy metals, such as lead, arsenic, mercury .. . in the tissues of green packaging, in the trunk, branches and roots of trees capable Due absorb pollutants, so now they have used a number of plant species in line processing system sewage, and is studying to use some plants to treat contaminated soil, absorb heavy metals, soil quality restoration, including the absorption of dioxin in the soil dora.

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  5. What is green electricity? What are the types of green electricity and how are they generated?

    The search for alternative energy sources is pointing out to green electricity production as the only sustainable method to power our home, transport system and industries in a future that seems to be only several decades away. This also represents the way to avoid the carbon footprint, a legitimate concern nowadays.

    What Is Green Electricity

    The term of 'green electricity' means electric energy obtained from renewable sources. Green methods refer to obtaining cheap gas and electricity from sources which are friendly to the environment and which can replace the limited fossil fuels. It is cheaper to obtain, highly convenient for small (homes) and large consumers (cities, states).

    Types of Green Electricity

    Green energy types are defined by ways in which power is generated and by its source. Thus, we have the following main types:

    1. Biomass Power

    An effective method is obtaining energy from organic sources, which are renewable. One way is by burning the biomass waste – like the fibre-rich sugarcane residue or hemp. Additionally, common algea is used to make biofuel. Sewage gas is also valued as an energy source.

    2. Wind and Tidal Energy

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    The best known image to illustrate the validity and efficiency of wind power as energy source is represented by the wind farms. These facilities can address the energy demands of communities located in geographical areas that get windy weather on a constant basis. The future looks even more interesting – flying wind farms will be created, in order to harvest power from wherever it is available. On the other hand, tides are much more predictable than wind, which make them truly reliable when generating energy.

    3. Solar Energy

    Although intermittent and rather 'diluted', solar energy is still able to supply small and average sized communities alone. Moreover, solar heaters are great for heating water. There is no use for additional processes, the sunlight is directly converted into energy by the photovoltaic cells in solar installations.

    4. Hydroelectricity

    The hydro-power is not left aside – it's the methods that need adjusting. Current ambitions support installations on fast flowing rivers and streams, or on existing dams, employing approved hydro-electric generators.

    5. Geothermal Energy

    Cheap, cost effective and reliable, geothermal energy depends on the tectonic plates. These small scale systems are great for residences in compatible areas. The natural processes within provide a form of renewable energy that was known to Romans. Geyser regions are very good places to install geothermal power plants or heat pumps. No fuel is required, as the energy is produced directly. A large plant is said to be able to power a whole city.

    6. Waste Heat

    Electricity can also be gained from all the industrial processes that generate heat. Heat is a form of energy and, when harvested and directed, can be used to create electricity. There are no such facilities yet, but researchers are currently working on methods to capture the heat that would otherwise be wasted.

    Green electricity is part of a sustainable economy and lifestyle. Future electricity generation should be too.

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    Hemp, also known as marijuana, is a tall, coarse plant native to Asia, but grown nearly anywhere in the world. Besides its drug use, hemp is recognized as a valuable fiber, one that can be used to make rope, fabric and other materials. Hemp oil is also an important byproduct, one that is used as dietary supplement as well as for the relief of eczema, a skin disease.

     

    Hemp oil is sometimes called hempseed oil. No matter the name used, this oil is derived by pressing hemp seeds. This oil should not be confused with hash oil, derived from the cannabis flower and acclaimed by many for its supposed medicinal qualities.

     

    In its natural state, cold pressed, unrefined hemp oil ranges from clear light green to dark in color and has a nutty flavor. For a grassier taste, users can choose a darker color.

     

    In its refined state, hemp oil is clear, colorless and offers only minimum flavoring. This also means that many of its naturally occurring vitamins and antioxidants have been removed. Thus, people seeking to enjoy the full medicinal benefit of hemp oil routinely look for unrefined oils. These oils are incorporated within body car products, including moisturizers, lotions, shampoos and more.

     

    Hemp oil also has an industrial purpose. The oil is used as a wood finish, in particular as a drying oil although it usually is blended with other oils. Hempseed oil is often compared with linseed oil in its usage. This oil has also found use as a biodiesel, according to researchers at the University of Connecticut.

     

    The cannabis saliva plant is used to produce hemp oil. However, it only contains small amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol, the psychoactive cannabis plant element. In the preparation process, the hemp seeds are cleansed before being pressed into an oil. Thus, hemp oil comes in below the government threshold for permissible tetrahydrocannabinol levels.

     

    Hemp oil is also served as a tincture, whereby it can be added to other ingredients or taken directly. Tinctures include a dropper to ensure that the right amount of hemp oil is extracted.

     

    When using any tincture, the bottle should be thoroughly shaken to ensure a full blending. Then and only then should the dropper be used to pull in the right amount to tincture. That tincture could then be added to a food source or applied directly under the tongue. Holding it in your mouth for upwards of 90 seconds before swallowing will ensure that you receive its full benefit. No, you won’t get “high” from a hemp seed tincture, but it can help you relax and sleep better.

     

    Hemp seed oil is now also popular with those who vape. Vaping is a process that allows people to enjoy different flavorings via an electronic cigarette or similar vaping device, without the side effects of smoking. Like the tincture, only trace amounts of tetrahydrocannabinol is present, well within legal limits. At the same time, users frequently remark that the oil mixed with other flavors provide a winning combination for vaping. This product, like the tincture, is legal in all 50 states.

     

    The Federal Drug Administration (FDA) has not ruled on the health benefits of hemp oil. That hasn’t stopped proponents from sharing their own findings, always with the proviso that such benefits may not have been independently confirmed explains Tasty Hemp Oil.

     

    Users are often the best people to ask about hemp oil and what it does for them. Some claim that hemp oil lowers their cholesterol levels, maintains their sugar levels (ideal for people with diabetes), and boosts their immune systems. Besides combatting eczema, hemp oil may help people who have another skin condition, namely psoriasis.

     

    At the same time, there are warnings that hemp oil can increase prostate cancer risk, may have an anti-clotting effect on blood, and cause diarrhea and abdominal cramps. Discuss your usage with your medical practitioner.

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  6. With rising awareness about the well-being of our planet both sellers and buyers acknowledge the importance of green home features. Living in an eco-friendly house reduces your carbon footprint, limits the exploitation of natural resources and can significantly lower utility bills, but how cost-effective are they and how much value do they add to a home?

     

    If you are interested in ways to increase the value of your home and make it eco-friendly then read on to find out 6 of the best that you can incorporate into your home.

     

    Sustainable insulation

    One of the most important green home upgrades is insulation, as proper insulation – especially in the attic – will ensure that energy is not escaping through the roof. There are many types of insulation to choose from, however blown-in cellulose wall insulation is mostly recommended by home sustainability experts. For reinforced effects, consider upgrading weather stripping around doors and windows.

     

    Solar panels

    Installing solar panels is a huge investment and organizational challenge as it requires you to rethink the infrastructure of the entire house. However, a study conducted by the National Bureau of Economic Research reveals that home sellers can look at an up to 97 per cent return rate when investing in new energy efficient strategies.

     

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    Energy and water saving appliances

    ENERGY STAR rating is an internationally recognized symbol of energy efficient appliances, which offer significant energy and water savings without compromising performance. Experienced realtors from OpenAgent suggest that replacing old and used appliances such as ovens, fridges, water heaters, TVs and even showerheads significantly improves the appearance of the house and has the power to boost its overall value. This is because potential buyers look for house features that will save them money in the long run. As an added bonus you can wrap your water heater in an insulating blanket or install tankless water heaters that heat water on demand.

     

    Energy-smart windows

    For potential buyers, old single-pane windows can be a big turn off, therefore it can be a good idea to invest in multi-pane windows adjusted to your climate zone. It is said that homeowners can save up to $500 annually by upgrading their windows to high performing models. Low-emissivity glass windows can reduce energy bills and harmful UV rays, as well as improve overall quality of life by cancelling outside noise and beautifying your property. Also, adding in skylights is an efficient way of bringing natural light into the rooms, thus reducing the need for artificial lighting.

     

    Go LED

    You may be surprised, but changing the smallest things can have a huge impact on home energy efficiency. When it comes to lighting, CFLs and LED lights are a must-have, as they are said to consume from 75 to 90 per cent less energy and last 20 times longer than incandescent light bulbs. LED light bulbs also do not heat up as quickly as older models, which helps to keep the house cooler in the summer, reducing the need for air conditioning. Modern dimmer switches and occupancy sensor light switches that turn the light off automatically when someone leaves the room are additional cool features that could boost the appeal of your house.

     

    Thermostats

    One of the simplest ways of adding value to your home is installing programmable thermostats, as almost half of energy bills go towards heating and cooling the house. By installing and programming thermostats wisely, utility bills can be reduced by up to 10 per cent.

     

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    These were our top environmentally-friendly home upgrades that give the best value for money. There is no denying that the real estate market is very competitive, therefore, if you want to sell your house and make significant profit, do make sure to implement these top 6 green and sustainable features to your home.

  7. Black Friday Promotes Over-Consumption and Waste

     

                Every year Thanksgiving weekend is overshadowed by Black Friday and in recent years Cyber Monday as well. Thanksgiving is supposed to be a time when families can get together, even if it’s just for a day or dinner, to talk and reconnect. However every year more American’s are focused on shopping. Stores are now open by 8:00 pm on Thanksgiving Day resulting in people sitting at the dinner table with their families while browsing on their phones for the best deals that they hope to buy in a few hours.  This is just another example of how our modern, technologically advanced society is constantly becoming more materialistic. Aside from Black Friday overshadowing an American holiday and tradition, it is an annual example of how Americans over-consume and by doing so are very wasteful.  A huge fraction of purchased goods during Black Friday and Cyber Monday are things that people don’t need, they are things they think they need. Advertisements and social trends play a big role in the impact of this event (I refuse to call it a holiday) and in our consumption behavior in general.

                Companies are tricking and forcing us to buy un-needed goods through the use of planned obsolescence and perceived obsolescence.  Planned obsolescence is disappointing because it refers to how companies purposely make products to only last a few years and by doing so force consumers to by new products from them every couple of years. The most common example of this is electronic devices. Apple creates a new IPhone every year so that once yours break “accidentally” there’s a brand new, more expensive one to purchase as a replacement. Not to mention that such companies stop making old models, forcing you to buy the newest model. On the other hand, perceived obsolescence is promoted by companies but ultimately results from our own social actions. Companies, through advertisements, constantly throw the promotion of new goods in our face. It’s almost impossible to go anywhere or do anything without seeing an advertisement of some sort. These advertisements tend to increase around the holiday season, hence the origin of Black Friday. The main reason such advertisements work is due to the social pressure we put on each other and ourselves. Everyone wants the next new model or brand and once a friend or family member purchases something then we are pressured and attracted to buying it as well. The biggest example of this is the fashion industry, where new trends come and go each season resulting in constant purchasing of new, unnecessary clothing. These companies are clearly getting the better of us based on the success of such events as Black Friday and Cyber Monday.

                So why is over-consumption such a bad thing, why should we care if people waste there money on unnecessary goods? It’s simple: overconsumption leads to waste! One of the downfalls to the technological advancements of today’s world is that we create materials that cannot be found in our natural world. This means that when we throw something out in the garbage it will never decompose. Purchasing many of today’s consumer goods is bad enough because most cannot be recycled and will sit in landfills, but over-consumption takes this once step further in that we buy more than we need! We buy new clothes or new phones before our old ones are worn our or broken. By doing so we are creating more waste because we constantly thrown away products that are still functional and contribute the ever-growing amount of waste humanity has created on this planet. In order to help reduce the waste we create of course we should recycle and reuse as much as possible. However, I believe that the creation of waste should be stopped at its source, and that’s our consumer purchasing. Buying less and using goods to there fullest is a sure way to decrease waste. Resisting social pressure and advertisements is key to getting this accomplished. So next year put the phones away and turn the TV off at the dinner table during Thanksgiving, you don’t need them.

    Joseph Ramondelli

     

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    For anyone looking for green waste removal, Brisbane is the place to do it. But you need to know who it is that you're partnering with. If you just go ahead and call on some unproven waste removal provider, you will never know where your waste will wind up. Moreover, you don't want to do more than you need to in the waste removal enterprise; if you can find a partner who will come out to your space, pick up your waste, and set the whole thing up for you, why wouldn't you want to do that? Here are some questions you should be asking ay before you decide on a green waste removal service provider.

    What: Maybe the first thing that you want to know about your is what exactly is considered "green waste"? You could be thinking it's one thing and they could have very narrow specifications for what they will take away. Maybe an even better thing to ask your green waste service is what they will take, regardless of whether or not it is considered "green waste." That is if you have more than simple green waste, you may wish to be looking into the services of a partner who can take away whatever it is that you have. You would hate to be sitting on a pile of excess trash simply because it is not considered "green waste" by whomever it is you decide to partner with.

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    Where: Whether you have a whole garden full of pruned physical green waste or maybe you have got lots of paper, plastic and aluminum that you want to get rid of, you would hate to have to move all this waste just in order to have it taken away. A waste removal service who will only come to your property line or demands that you drop off the waste isn't really doing you any favors, are they? If you have to carry lot half way you might as well just finish taking it the whole way, right? You need to know just where the green waste removal in Brisbane finds for you will go and where they won't go before you give them any money.

    When: Another point about waste removal is that you need them to show up when you need them there. If this is a service which only comes in the morning for a couple of hours that might not work for your schedule. Moreover, you basically just need to have a waste removal partner who will go the extra mile and will work around your schedule. Make sure that your waste removal service will be able to work on your time frame or it might not even be worth it for you to bother.

    How: One more thing you want to know about your green waste removal team is how they will cart this stuff off. If they are talking about backing a huge dump truck onto your property and crushing that perfectly good crops you just pruned, that doesn't make much sense, now does it? You need to make sure that the team that's coming out to your space will be respectful of your property and will offer you all the assurances you need.

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    One of the best green waste removal teams anywhere in Brisbane is Anything Rubbish. They will work around your schedule and they will honor your property so that you don't need to lift a finger. They may even surprise you a bit on their very reasonable prices so that you can call again!

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    Over the years there are a few things in life that I’ve learnt. Over a period of ones life, one can expect to pay taxes, die and have a few laughs along the way. Another thing that is certain in life is that one can expect Americans to love their pick up trucks! Now being from the United Kingdom, I’ve always had a fascination with pick up trucks and why they are such a big pull to our American cousins over the pond. I’ve never quite understood the fascination of them, mainly because there’s not many around where I live. I’ve also got into my mind that pick up trucks are notoriously bad for the environment. Recently though, I did a bit of research online after spotting a pick up on the roads near me, and apparently there’s a new type of pickup truck called the Ram 1500 EcoDiesel which Dodge have created to have minimal impact on the environment. So I did a bit more research and here’s what I found.

     

    What precisely makes it an Eco Truck?

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    It’s simply really. Most trucks that you can name off the top of your head have terrible miles per gallon figures. The EcoDiesel uses very advanced diesel technology that enables it to use the latest biodiesel available. How does this affect the truck? Well it puts out the best miles per gallon of any truck the same size.

    Why do this?

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    Well many people like myself are intrigued by pickup trucks, especially those living outside of the USA, but don’t want to buy them for fear of hurting the environment. This is a really good move by Dodge to cater for those in the USA and abroad who are interested in a pick up but know that many have a negative impact on the world due to fuel and oil consumption. Not many pickups are available to buy in the UK but there’s a reason this one is and it’s because it eco friendly.

    So what are my overall thoughts of this vehicle? Well its great to finally see that a pick up truck is being made which takes the environment into account. If all other truck companies were to take a leaf out of Dodge’s book, the world would be a little less polluted and a better place to live!

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    There are a number of ways in which employees can go green at their cubicles or personal offices; however, the most significant step of going green at the office is by persuading administrators to adopt cost effective and environmentally friendly policies. This article discusses ten easy ways to go green at the office:

    Cut Down on Energy

    Energy costs at the office can be cut down in very simple steps. First and foremost, the office may use daylight in lieu of artificial light when appropriate. Workers can move their desks near windows so as to take advantage of free natural lighting. When natural lighting is not a realistic option, compact fluorescent bulbs may be used. These bulbs last up to ten times longer than ordinary bulbs and use 75% less energy. They are also available in various wattages and sizes.

    Turning off computers and lights at the end of working hours should be made mandatory at the office. According to Office Depot, a 100-watt bulb working for one hour consumes approximately 37-kilowatt hours of energy annually. Contrary to popular belief, screen savers do not actually save energy; thus, computers ought to be set at sleep mode during the day, when workers are taking a break. Plug all the office appliances into power strips to make it easier to switch off all appliances at the end of the day (with just a single button).

    Always purchase Energy Star-rated electronics.. These types of electronics can save up to two-thirds more energy than the non-compliant electronics. Also, consider controlling your power usage with a power toolkit (like this one http://www.powershop.com.au/)

    Decorate with real plants

    Artificial plants may be easy to maintain and nice to look at but other than that, they practically add no value to the office. On the other hand, real plants are not only attractive but they also purify the air by absorbing airborne pollutants. Additionally, they release oxygen and healthy negative ions into the air. Some good examples include the following: Bamboo, English Ivy, Peace Lily, Rubber plant and Spider plant. Water them at least once a week.

    Eco-friendly Storage Units

    As people around the world are becoming increasingly conscious about the environment, more and more eco-friendly storage units are being erected to support these efforts. Some of the features of these units include sustainable filing carts, shelving cubes, cabinets and storage boxes manufactured from recycled products. When looking for storage space for miscellaneous items, offices aiming to go green should choose these eco-friendly storage units. Though these units are costlier than the normal storage units, the equipment used are modern and are manufactured from sustainable materials, making them a worthwhile investment.

    Recycle Office Waste

    Another easy way for offices to go green is by recycling office waste. This may be done by designating separate trash containers for metal, glass, papers or plastics. Soda cans can be placed into one container while papers can be placed into another. Today, most urban areas have municipal services that collect such recycled waste and transfer it to a reclamation facility. By recycling trash in the office, the environmental footprint which is produced through various activities can be reduced. Additionally, recycling mobile devices and computers allows companies to reuse rare elements that were originally used in the manufacture of various electrical components.

    Limit paper usage

    Going digital is a very useful way of going green at the office. The internet is a great way of sharing information in the office, as it nullifies the need for printing information on paper. To limit paper usage further, overhead projectors and whiteboards can be used to display the agenda during meetings. Employees should be encouraged to print information only when necessary, and not at every available opportunity. And when printing is done, the front and back sides of the paper should be used whenever possible. More importantly, the printing paper used should ideally be manufactured from recycled paper.

    Multi-purpose machines

    The various types of devices found in most offices produce poisonous substances during the manufacturing and disposal stages. Technological advancements in the last decade have seen the invention of multifunctional machines. These machines can basically do everything; they can be used to scan documents, print, copy and fax, thereby reducing the emission of harmful substances into the air.

    Telecommuting (Remote Work)

    Vehicles and locomotives have proven to have a number of adverse effects on the environment. Offices can therefore contribute towards the reduction of these effects by telecommuting a few times during every month. This simply means that employees to do not have to commute to a central place of work – they may even work from home. Not only does this help to save the environment but it also saves a lot of time and money. Similarly, companies can limit the need for travelling by investing in video-conferencing facilities.

    Save Water

    Turn off all taps completely and ensure that they do not drip. It is estimated that leaking taps (at a rate of one drop per second) waste more than 25 litres every day; this is about 10000 litres of water every year. Low-flow faucet aerators may also be installed so as to regulate the flow of water from office taps. Running toilets waste a lot of water and ought to be fixed on a regular basis.

    Solar Power

    The initial investment required for a solar power system may be expensive, but in the long run, more cash will be saved by installing one. Nonetheless, it is important to note that not every building is suitable for solar power. The building set-up and the geographical location are some of the key factors to consider before installing solar power.

    Buy Eco-friendly Supplies

    Lastly, offices can make it a policy to buy furniture and office supplies manufactured from recycled and environmentally friendly products. For instance, offices may purchase staple-less staplers and pens that can be refilled. Detergents used in the washrooms should also be environmentally safe. More so, hand driers and cloth towels are greener alternatives than paper cloths.

    Conclusion

    Going green at the office can be very easy and cost effective. Companies can actually contribute to a greener and safer planet without spending a lot of money. Even small steps such as printing less, saving water and buying recycled supplies can make a huge difference.

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    Concrete pools are the ideal type of swimming pool Melbourne. You can also add an addition space for sunbathing, for entertainment, and just relaxation, in your swimming pool. These types of pools have more advantages when we compare it with the other types that are used these days. This concrete pools are strong, long lasting, and gives good functional value to the swimming pools. The concrete is the most general substance which is used in the construction process of the in-ground pools. You can get a varied option to choose from in this type of construction; the most important feature is that people can design their pool according to their need and the customized designs. The process of the construction will take 4 to 5 months, and the charges of the pool’s building may depend upon the constructor, your choice of designs, the standard, and also the finishing style.

    Below mentioned are some benefits and drawbacks of the concrete pools, they include:

    Benefits:

    · Design flexibility: As powerful and continual as concrete happens to be, this building content has long been described for its extreme flexibility for design. The developer of concrete private pools will allow for unique, customized design features, such as unusual ends, disappearing boundaries, islands, separated levels and many more such things.

    · Strength: Concrete is known for its sustained strength, and this is the reason why people go for concrete pools in Melbourne. When tangible private pools are established, they are shored up using wood and metal. Then the outcome is magnificently constructed pool that will hold up for decades. While the tangible share development process will take a longer period due to its complexes, the completed product can be one that is truly a specially designed work of art that is intended to last for a life time

    · Beauty: Concrete pools present buyers the benefit of just about any surface that they want. Concrete can be completed with stones, variety glass, vinyl fabric, flooring, ceramic tiles, paint and a mass of other equipments. Although the pool configuration on the floor will be made of strong, sustained concrete, but the outer area can take on just about any look possible.

    Drawbacks:

    • A high lifetime cost: Concrete pools will need to be remodeled every 10-20 years. This includes restructuring and re-tiling the pool at a cost of $8k-$15k or much higher based on material used.
    • More chemical use: Because the surface area of tangible private pools is very permeable, more substances and purification are required to prevent plankton. This also involves a lot of chemical usage for the purification of the water which prevents the users from falling sick or catching any allergies from the water.

    • More maintenance: Concrete pools also need to be frequently boomed or taken with a sheer sweep to eliminate plankton from the floor or the total surface.
    • Longer install time: Concrete pools, take longer to set up....usually 2-4 months.

    Regular servicing also includes keeping the surface clean. As, with any tangible accumulation from fungus can cause pool, and the outdoor patio areas to become slick. Periodic power cleaning or light cleansing with a light soap will eliminate any dust build up and will ensure that your pools are clean and safe.

    The professionals for the concrete pools in Melbourne will be able to offer you expert advice while in the construction process, and will do the work in stages. When you consider the above mentioned points you will be in a best place to decide on what you need to go for.

    Above mentioned details intended to reader who are seeking for information about concrete pools. Click here for more information which may give you few more idea.

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    As a nation the Australians have invented a great deal, from the refrigerator to the surf ski. But who would have thought that Australia would also be the home of a car that runs on tap water?

    Well, such was the vision of an amateur engineer who invented a new type of fuel cell that allows almost any car to run on nothing more than water. The revolutionary inventor, known as Joe, envisaged a world where fuel for our cars flowed as freely as water from our taps.

    The invention came about in the 1990s when fuel prices were on a never ending incline . Inventor Joe, frustrated at having to pay high prices for petrol started the process of developing a cheaper alternative. 

    After scouting for some simple parts in a local scrap yard, the Australian experimented on his own car, a V8 Rover, until he eventually invented what was to become known as the ‘Joe Cell’ – an electrolysis cell built from stainless steel pipes that runs on nothing more than H2O.

    During a documentary series Joe revealed he created the configuration by ‘throwing it together in a weird order’ and that he was surprised when he ‘hit the key and the damn thing ran’. According to Joe, the water in the cell needs to be charged but is not consumed and can be affected by a number of factors. 


    Over the past several years, many scientists have invented different versions of water-powered cells. However, unlike the Joe Cell, most of these cells were charged by hydrogen a compound element of water. The Joe Cell, on the other hand, doesn’t involve extracting hydrogen from water, but rather using simple household water.

    Many theories claiming to explain how the Joe Cell works have emerged over the years. Among these is the Orgone energy theory, which attributes the Joe Cell to be an Orgone Accumulator – a device that runs on an omnipresent energy source. While other reports claim the Joe Cell generates a gaseous substance that produces energy when ignited. 

    The lack of scientific verification has meant the Joe Cell has remained highly controversial amongst the scientific community. Some respected scientists have openly condemned the theory as pseudo-science. While some environmentalist groups have herald the Joe Cell as a reputable invention, which could dramatically change the way we consume energy. 

    The Bryon New Energy Charitable Trust have published claims that they have successfully driven a car across Australia on less than two cups of water. The Trust’s founder, Sol Milin, reported to the Bryon Echo Newspaper that the ‘want to find useful power sources for the planet that enables people to power vehicles for free’.  However, the Bryon New Energy Charitable Trust has yet to develop a useful and free source of energy, and in 2012 their reputation was tarnished when Sol Milin was involved in a court case with Dick Smith, founder of the Australian Skeptics

    Due to this uncertainty and scepticism the Joe Cell has become the centre point of many conspiracy theories claiming potential inventors of water powered cells around the world are being intimidated to abandon their research by powerful governments and counter movements. 

    Information for this article was sourced from a posting on the Gumtree blog.

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    Over the past years, the world technological innovation has been on the increase with the recent trend of the introduction of smartphones. This is a great influence on customers buying habits today. Technology can be greatly described as the best world changing agent that have drastically changed the way people operate and associate with each other. Its contribution in the transport, Purchase, communication and social life cannot be emphasized.

    As a matter of fact, technological innovation is real. In the past, people were used to traveling from one place to another to purchase a product or to make an inquiry. This used to cause trouble to many individuals as the cost used to be high. Due to technology, there have been drastic changes in the way people travel as people can now make orders online, book vehicle and communicate with their loved ones through use of technology. This shows the power of technology towards our buying habits.

    To begin with, it is fair to say that the use of adverts has greatly contributed to increase in the buying habits of different individuals. This is because the sellers are now in a position to use online platforms such as social media e.g. Facebook, twitter, Skype and the rest to advertise their products. Such adverts are more appealing to the consumers hence it encourage them to buy more of the product. In addition, technology has also led to an increase of free services and discounts. Buyers are now in a position to use free communication such as emails and social networks that enable us to get in touch with the sellers hence giving us a chance to bargain. The sellers also use the same technology to give a discount to customers. This is due to the competitive nature of the market online hence this, in turn, contributes to lowering of the price of the product. Example sellers on Amazon give coupons and discounts to buyers.

    Technology also has led to boosting the education system and making it cheap, convenient and affordable to the students. For instance, many universities have integrated the use of technology in teaching. Classes are now offered online through distance learning. Students can register their degrees and study from home or place of work without having to travel to attend physical classes in their universities and colleges. Due to this, many universities are now forced to take the challenge and go online or else they stand a chance of losing more students. This has made it convenient and cheap on the side of the students

    Thirdly, the use of technology has helped the consumers to make informed choices before making a decision of buying anything. This means that we can go online and check the price of what we want to purchase and compare it with another price in other sites before buying.

    In addition to this, the introduction of coupons has been advantageous to the sellers. As it's mentioned on http://zrealizujkupon.pl/shops/oleoleplthey are now able to track the purchasing trend through the use of unique bar codes on coupons. Coupons also help to increase the purchase volume as they attract and bring customers on the stores and lastly coupons helps to boost the product line

    In conclusion, it should be noted that consumers continue to interact with multiple object that surrounds his environment. However, the mode of interaction is changing due to changes in technology. As a result, consumer behaviors may be influenced by a new set of factors that seem novel today.

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    Whether we’re ready or not to surrender more of our sovereignty to the omnipresent influence of technology in our lives, we will soon face another achievement that will have a profound impact on society, the economy and environment.  Within this decade, driverless cars will cruise into our lives and harness our energy expenditures.  The potential impact on our environment and energy efficiency could be unprecedented.

    Driverless Cars Are More Energy Efficient

    Despite an ongoing debate about the various pros and cons surrounding driverless cars, one aspect of them has gained universal acceptance.  According to researchers, current cars greedily require up to 85% of their total gas just to move the steel of the car, as opposed to moving the person.  The advent of driverless cars will usher in a dramatic decrease human error, and in turn, accidents.  This means smaller cars with less need for steel and accident protection.  Gas savings will be enormous and lessen our dependence on foreign oil.  The way we drive will also greatly increase the amount of gas we save.

    Fuel Economy Revolution

    Although no universal agreement has been reached, many industry insiders widely believe that driverless cars will all communicate wirelessly.  Envision a hive mind controlling smart navigation of car colonies across the nation.  Fuel economy will be improved in a variety of ways due to this vehicle matrix.  According to one estimate, cars will save between 20-30% more gas by drafting.  By communicating wirelessly, cars will be able to drive in packs on expressways and interstates, thus reducing wind resistance.  There are also added benefits in regards to parking and intersections.  The need to drive around the block endlessly looking for a parking spot will be eliminated, as cars will communicate to each other about when and where the first spot is available.  Lastly, it’s suggested that cars will be able to coordinate passing through intersections without stopping, thus saving gas by not idling at stop lights.

    Auto Manufacturers Are Green For Go

    Earlier this year, Audi conducted an open road test on a Tampa expressway with Governor Scott riding along.  Besides Audi, BMW, Ford, General Motors, Honda, Infiniti, Lexus, Mercedes-Benz, Nissan, Tesla, Toyota, Volkswagen, and Volvo all are actively researching driverless cars and pouring millions into their respective R&D programs.  Driverless cars will likely be seen on the roads by 2020, but may not be common until 2030.  Additionally, they will likely hit the market with hefty price tags, likely restricting their ownership to companies and the affluent.  Regardless, they will radically alter our economy and society, perhaps starting with teamsters, mailmen, package delivery companies and even pizza delivery drivers.  With absolute certainly, the driverless car revolution has arrived, and brings with it profound benefits for our economy and environment.

     

     Bio: Jason Hall is blogger for Budget.com.au

  12. By J. Matthew Roney

    At the end of 2013, the wind farms installed in more than 85 countries had a combined generating capacity of 318,000 megawatts, which would be enough to meet the residential electricity needs of the European Union’s 506 million people. New data from the Global Wind Energy Council show that wind developers built 35,000 megawatts of new generating capacity worldwide in 2013. This was down from 45,000 megawatts installed in 2012—marking only the second time in 25 years that installed capacity increased by less than it did the year before.

    The principal reason for the decline in new capacity was a more than 90 percent drop in U.S. wind farm installations from a record 13,000 megawatts in 2012. Although the United States has the second-highest wind power capacity in the world—some 61,000 megawatts—a lack of long-term policy planning has led to several such boom-and-bust cycles.

    Despite the dearth of new capacity, there were many bright spots for U.S. wind power in 2013. Wind accounted for at least 12 percent of the electricity generated in nine states, including Iowa (27 percent) and South Dakota (26 percent). Iowa will get another boost from a $1.9 billion deal announced in December 2013: Warren Buffett’s MidAmerican Energy Company purchased Siemens turbines totaling more than 1,000 megawatts, all destined for Iowa wind projects. When complete in 2015, these wind farms will likely bring the wind share of electricity in Iowa to at least 33 percent.

    Wind’s contribution to the grid is also growing in Texas, the U.S. wind capacity leader with 12,400 megawatts. The Electric Reliability Council of Texas reports that wind farms produced nearly 10 percent of the electricity delivered to its 24 million customers in 2013. And with the early-2014 completion of state-funded transmission projects linking windy West Texas and the Panhandle to population centers to the east, Texas can accommodate even more clean electricity on the grid. The state has 7,000 megawatts of new wind power capacity under construction, more than half of the 12,000 megawatts currently being built nationwide.

    China has led the world in installed capacity since surpassing the United States in 2010. In contrast to the drop in U.S. installations in 2013, China’s wind construction accelerated—adding 16,000 megawatts to reach a total 91,000 megawatts. Wind further solidified its role as the number three electricity source in China (behind coal and hydropower), out-generating nuclear power by an impressive 22 percent. The National Energy Administration aims to make wind-generated electricity cost-competitive with coal by 2020. (See data.)

    As in Texas and many other places around the world, some of China’s best wind resources are found far from major cities where electricity demand is high. High-voltage transmission lines now under construction will connect wind-rich provinces in the north and west with more populous ones in the central and eastern provinces. For example, one project linking remote Xinjiang province to the 4 million people in Zhengzhou, the capital of Henan province, was completed in early 2014. Infrastructure projects such as this one will be critical in reaching the official Chinese goal of 200,000 megawatts of grid-connected wind capacity by 2020.

    India, the country with the fifth-highest amount of installed capacity, added 1,700 megawatts in 2013 to cross the 20,000 megawatt threshold. Although this was 25 percent less new capacity than in 2012, India is poised to grow its wind power base dramatically in the coming years. In January 2014, the government announced a National Wind Energy Mission—in the spirit of the country’s National Solar Mission—to be launched mid-year. By beefing up the grid and using incentives to attract investment to wind hotspots, the program aims to hit 100,000 megawatts of wind within eight years.

    Development is picking up elsewhere in Asia as well. In Pakistan, wind power capacity doubled to 100 megawatts in 2013 and will double again when two 50-megawatt projects go online in 2014. Thailand also doubled its wind capacity in 2013, reaching 220 megawatts. And the Philippines has seven projects due for completion in 2014 that will expand wind capacity there 13-fold to 450 megawatts.

    Before China’s recent surge, Europe was the leading wind power region. Germany, which added 3,200 megawatts in 2013, ranks third worldwide in total capacity, with 34,000 megawatts. Four of its northern states regularly get half or more of their electricity from wind farms.

    When it comes to wind’s contribution to national electricity needs, European countries top the leaderboard. Denmark gets one third of its electricity from wind, well on its way to a target of 50 percent by 2020. Portugal, Lithuania, Spain, and Ireland come in at around 20 percent each. In fact, wind came within a percentage point of beating nuclear power for the title of Spain’s number one electricity source in 2013. And Germany, Europe’s largest economy, obtained 8 percent of its electricity from wind farms.

    While some of the larger European wind power markets, including Spain, Italy, and France, have slowed down, smaller players are speeding up. Poland and Romania each expanded their wind power capacity by 36 percent in 2013, to 3,400 and 2,600 megawatts, respectively. And in Turkey, even though the approval process for projects is slow, wind capacity grew by 28 percent to nearly 3,000 megawatts.

    One region with enormous wind potential but little development so far is Latin America. Brazil, best known for getting 80 percent of its electricity from large hydropower, hosts the most wind power capacity in the region—now close to 3,500 megawatts after a 950-megawatt addition in 2013. At government auctions, wind companies have won more than half of all contracts to sell electricity since 2011, according to Bloomberg data. Some 10,000 megawatts of wind may be installed in Brazil between 2014 and 2019. Mexico, Chile, Argentina, and Uruguay also added wind power in 2013.

    In all of Africa, just one project added capacity in 2013. The final 90 megawatts of Ethiopia’s 120-megawatt Ashegoda Wind Farm went into operation, more than doubling the country’s wind capacity to 170 megawatts. South Africa has 2,100 megawatts of wind power in the pipeline, including 750 megawatts to be added in 2014 alone.

    Offshore projects account for just over 2 percent of the wind capacity installed worldwide. Having hit a seventh straight annual installation record in 2013, however, offshore wind is growing fast. More than half of the 7,100 megawatts of offshore capacity belongs to the United Kingdom, which installed 730 megawatts in its waters in 2013. Denmark, Germany, and Belgium each added at least 190 megawatts to their totals, while China added 39 megawatts. Both Vietnam and Spain added offshore wind capacity for the first time, as did the United States, although the U.S. project was one very small demonstration turbine off the coast of Maine.

    Offshore wind is still one of the more expensive electricity generating technologies, but onshore wind is often highly competitive with coal, natural gas, and nuclear power in areas with strong wind resources. And costs continue to fall as wind manufacturers steadily improve turbine efficiency, harnessing more wind per machine. In the United States, the average price of wind-generated electricity has dropped 40 percent since 2009.

    After a slower year in 2013, world wind installations will bounce back in 2014, perhaps to a new record—the Global Wind Energy Council sees the potential for 47,000 megawatts. Roughly half of the total will be built in China and the United States (around three times more in the former than in the latter). This is good news for the wind business, for electricity consumers, and for people who value cleaner air and water. But increasingly dire scientific warnings about the consequences of climate change mean that the world will need to accelerate the shift to carbon-free, renewable sources of energy even more so in the years to come.

    Copyright © 2014 Earth Policy Institute

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    housewife-882533_1280.thumb.jpg.7fe37a55As everyone is talking about the climate changes, global warming and sustainability, it seems like all “passionate” supporters of the green idea are just talking, but they lack action. But I’m happy that you want to take action and change things for good. If you want to live in a greener, cleaner planet, remember that any change begins within ourselves.

     

    Limit your environmental impact, live a healthier life and save money by following these simple steps.

     

    1. Forget about bottled water. Instead, buy water filters to clean tap water. When on the go, opt for a reusable bottle, preferably aluminium one.

    2. Borrow. Go to the library and borrow the books you want to read, instead of buying them from the bookstore.

    3. Make your own natural cleaners:

    • Usually all the ingredients you need are vinegar, baking soda, lemon and soap.

    • When choosing a cleaning company, hire the one that uses bio detergents in the cleaning process. This company, for instance, works with natural, eco-friendly detergents.

    4. Get out of the car. Reduce the harmful exhaust emissions by walking or cycling to work. In addition to the saved money, you will also improve your health and reduce the risk of obesity.

    5. Save energy:

    • Turn your thermostat down a few degrees in the winter and increase the temperature a few degrees in the summer. This way you will save money on heating and cooling.

    • Replace the old incandescent light bulbs with fluorescent ones.

    • Unplug appliances when not being used, or buy "smart" power strips. They feel when appliances are off and eliminate "phantom" energy use.

    • Instead of machine drying, hang the laundry on a clothesline or on a drying rack.

    • Improve the insulation, install solar panels, upgrade the windows.

    6. Save water:

    • Invest in a low-flow showerhead.

    • Take shorter showers, bathe with warm, not hot water.

    • In the garden, grow native plants which require few and far between waterings.

    7. Use reusable shopping bags. Put one in your handbag, at home, on your desk, in the car, or any place where it would be useful.

    8. Buy smart:

    • Look in thrift stores, garage sales and consignment shops for clothing and furnishings.

    • Buy in bulk. Save on packaging and money.

    • Invest in high-quality products. Paying more now means less frequently replacing of household items, clothes, appliances, etc.

     

    Resources: Worldwatch.org

  13. More than 1 million U.S. homes now sport solar panels on the roof. That number is expected to double in the next two years as the cost of solar continues to decline and solar awareness continues to rise.
     
    While making the shift to solar is good for the environment, that’s not the only reason to invest in solar technology. Here are just a few of the many benefits homeowners can realize by going solar. 

    5 Reasons So Many Homeowners Are Going Solar

    1.    Solar is a good investment. While the exact ROI for solar varies according to location and other factors, research indicates that in most states it makes financial sense to go solar. Specifically, solar brings a better return than a five-year CD in 86 percent of states. If you live in one of the top 13 states for solar, you’ll actually do better with your solar panels than you would by investing in the S&P 500. 
    2.    Solar is reliable. With any technology comes the potential for failure, but solar bucks the trend by being one of the least likely of your home’s systems to break down. While solar panels are typically warranted for 25 years, 90 percent of them last 30 years or longer. One report showed that many 40-year-old panels are still generating power at 80 percent of their efficiency. In addition, a residential solar system typically has no moving parts, and almost never needs repair. 
    3.    Solar is security. Concerned about power grid security, future energy price hikes, and/or the escalating effects of global climate change on the weather? Installing a solar system with battery backup is an excellent way to ensure that you will always have the power you need at a price you can afford. 
    4.    Solar protects our planet. Sunshine is a clean, renewable energy source that does not contribute to global climate change. While all manufacture has an impact on the environment, solar panels create far more energy in their lifetime than is consumed by making them. In fact, an average 4 KW solar power system offsets nearly 200,000 pounds of carbon dioxide in its first 25 years. It would take planting more than 2,000 trees to equal that amount of carbon offset.  
    5.    Solar is hot — and that’s cool. Who doesn’t like to be the cool kid on the block? Solar is an undeniably hot and trendy technology, so why not add a system to your roof and enjoy witnessing the “panel envy” of your neighbors and friends?   

    How to Go Solar at Home

    According to Google’s Project Sunroof, nearly four out of five U.S. homes have enough unshaded area to install solar photovoltaic (PV) panels. So when you’re ready for a larger investment in your home (similar to what you would pay for a kitchen remodel or home addition), chances are good that solar will pay off for you.  

    That said, PV panels aren’t the only way to go solar in your home. Here are more ideas, at a variety of price points for any budget:
    •    Solar water heater — A typical solar water heating system saves 50-80 percent on monthly water heating costs, even in a cloudy climate.
    •    Solar landscape lighting — Solar outdoor lighting doesn’t just save electricity. It’s also safer and reduces maintenance because you won’t have to run power lines outside. 
    •    Solar chargers — A solar phone charger lets you charge your phone from anywhere, even on a hiking trip or in a boat! 
    •    Solar Christmas lights — Solar LED holiday lights are convenient to set up, and can save you up to $10 for every 300 hours they’re lit.

    These are just a few of the many benefits you can realize by going solar at home. Check out this infographic to discover even more compelling reasons why so many Americans these days are choosing to add solar to their homes. 

    Ryan McNeill is the president of Renewable Energy Corporation, one of the largest residential solar energy companies in the mid-Atlantic region. It is committed to providing homeowners with high-quality, American-made solar panels and solar energy products. 

    solar_panels_info_update2.jpg

  14. Saving the people from the clutches of diseases or death is an experience which cannot be expressed in words. Give true meaning to the life by enrolling in one of the courses listed in this website. Read more about our courses by exploring the website and understand the vision of the institute. All the courses are designed taking into account the present trend in emergency treatment. Register in this accredited institute and get trained by specialists. Do not blindly follow others and think something different. Welcome the bright future by finishing one of the courses listed in this website. The students will get placed in the best hospitals once they finish these courses.

    The fees for all the courses are quite nominal and subjects are par excellence. Be a class apart and register in one of the courses. Sufferings are endless in this life and many heart patients expect the emergency team to arrive to their place immediately. There is always a deficit in life saving support team. Amplify the scope of employment by finishing these courses in flying colors. Hundreds of students who finished their courses in this incredible institute got placed in top notch hospitals with handsome pay package. Stop thinking and read more to enroll in these courses.

    The Course Contents Are Quite Simple

    The students will be treated properly and given best attention during the course. Magnify the image in the society by enrolling in one of the courses. Learning these power-packed subjects is very important in the present climate since hundreds of people fall ill suddenly with various diseases and look forward for emergency medical assistance. Heart diseases are in the raise and millions of people fall prey to these dangerous diseases during the course of time.

    When heart attack happens in their place of living, it is very difficult to treat them immediately. So, they place a call to emergency team for immediate help. There is always shortage of life support team and patients are left to lurch. Assist these innocent people by learning the tricks of life support through our institute. Enhancing life support skill is always better since the students can also work as a volunteer and save many lives during their life time. Life without objective is a waste. Be decisive and set an objective to save the life of the patients.

     The students will get superb guidance and training in this institute. Look out for the best in this institute which is filled with vibrant culture. The trainers will show positive energy and enthusiasm while training the students and teach practical methods that have to be adopted during the process of life saving. Every semester will be filled with eye-opening and positive twists that will leave the students spell bound. Sitting without a job is a mental agony and a suffering. Move ahead in life by enrolling in one of the courses and showcase the potential in future.

    The Institute That Sets High Standards

    Many world class clinics and diagnostic centers are suffering from shortage of ECG technicians and looking out for bunch of candidates with this special skill. Get employed in the best labs as an ECG technician after doing the course in this institution. Pediatric care is an interesting subject and many nurses are showing interest to enroll their names in this institute to get ENPC certificate. First few minutes are very important during emergency treatment to save a life.

    The students will be taught about all the procedures related to emergency treatments and fill their brain with best knowledge. Many interesting things and latest inventions are happening in the field of medicine. Path breaking discoveries are also happening in this area. So enhancing the knowledge in medicinal field is an advantage. This institute follows systematic procedures while educating the students and provides hands on training during the period of course. The expert instructors from various fields of medicines will teach the students in a mind blowing class room. The students will show maximum interest during the program and cherish the days spent in this institution. The students will be treated royally throughout the course period.

     

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    All businesses have to consider their bottom line; unless they can make a profit, they cease to exist. In some cases, this can mean that workers who provide raw materials, such as food items or textiles, are exploited. In other situations, the western world’s consumers demand particular fruits or vegetables all year round, regardless of the transport costs and environmental impact of moving products many thousands of miles.

    Many manufacturers and retailers now choose to alleviate at least some of these problems by subscribing to ethical fair trade practices, which ensures that the producers and farmers who supply the raw materials receive a fair price for their products and that the workers are not exploited. More information on this is available from http://www.fairtrade.org.uk/en/what-is-fairtrade.

    It is easy to identify food products which use fair trade ingredients, with the distinctive logo incorporated into the printed labels. Some consumers deliberately choose such labelled items, so that they know they are “doing their bit” to support fair trade in the developing countries.

    A more difficult dilemma is the growing consumer demand for out-of-season fruits and vegetables, regardless of the implications for the environment of the transportation of such items. It is possible to argue that the benefits to the farmers and other food producers of having a larger market outweigh the adverse environmental issues.

    A few restaurants have taken the stance that their unique selling point is that they supply only food that uses local, in-season ingredients. This can sometimes be difficult to sustain and certainly tests the ingenuity and creativity of the chefs, but is undoubtedly to be admired on ethical grounds.

    There are also concerns about the effect of widespread use of pesticides on growing food crops, so that there is an increasing demand for organic foodstuffs that can guarantee to be completely free of such chemicals. Some controversy exists about whether organic foods have any higher nutritional value than non-organic foods, but it seems sound advice to wash all fruit and vegetables under cold running water before eating or cooking.

    Some possible solutions

    Transport is not the only aspect that affects the environmental impact of food products. The food industry has to comply with an enormous range of conditions and standards in the manufacturing processes, hygiene and health and safety issues and packaging and labelling. Keeping abreast with (sometimes frequently changing) requirements can be very difficult.

    One way of avoiding waste for in the food industry is to have an in-house label printer, so that there are no stockpiles of labels that soon become out of date and are therefore redundant. More information on the most suitable type of label printer for different businesses is available from quicklabel, depending on whether the need is for short run label printing, or runs of many thousands. This means the business can select environmentally friendly inks and paper or other labelling materials.

    Another consideration is the amount of packaging that is used. There has been a trend in recent months to have less packaging, therefore less environmental impact because fewer trees are needed for the paper or cardboard and there is less waste when the packaging is discarded. Whereas many products used to have a whole cardboard box, with all the relevant information, barcodes, product labels and logos, nutritional details and sell-by/use-by dates, with a plastic covered inside container, these have often been replaced by a cardboard outer sleeve that is less than half the size of a full box. This is obviously cheaper for the food manufacturer to use as well, so there is a benefit to looking at the most effective packaging for different products.

    A further increasing trend is to make more use of recyclable materials for packaging. Most local authorities have recycling targets, so that they provide special bins for plastics, paper, cardboard and tin for their customers, to encourage good practice in this area. There are collection points for glass jars and bottle in many supermarkets, as well as in local authority facilities. Food manufacturers can gain “brownie points” by using recyclable packaging where possible.

    Finally, one of the biggest complications for anyone involved in the food industry – whether producing, transporting, catering or selling - is avoiding wasted or damaged goods. A system for rotating foods so that the shortest dated are used first is a basic requirement and must be instilled into every employee. Close monitoring of quantities and demand is also essential. It might be better to run out of a particular product than to have large quantities of it thrown out if it becomes out of date. This requires very careful management, including factors that might affect seasonal demand.

    No-one said it was easy, but anticipating where problems might occur and taking steps to avoid them, together with sound management practices, can go a long way to helping a food business be both “green” and ethical.

    About the Author

    Jane Woodcroft has been a customer service manager at QuickLabel Systems for several years. She has a wide experience of advising customers on every aspect of their label printing requirements in many different industries.

    Outside of her job, Jane enjoys “dabbling with paints” and has had a couple of exhibitions of her work.

  15. You do not need to use chemicals and harmful insecticides in order to get rid of ants in your house. Not only because they can cause allergic reactions or even harm your children, pets, or yourself, but because you have an option of getting rid of ants all by yourself using very simple natural pest control methods. Every day more and more people choose the natural way: healthier food instead of fast food, herbal remedies instead of pharmaceutical drugs, natural prevention instead of potentially dangerous vaccines, and so on. Why don`t we use natural insect exterminators, as well?

    We will show you only five simplest possible methods of eradicating ants in a completely natural way. There is nothing easier than applying these methods. Here is the list of our preferred top five herbal exterminators of ants and other insects:

    1.     Peppermint powder. If you have stomach troubles, drink some peppermint tea; but even if your stomach is fine, take dried peppermint sprigs and leaves, crush them and make a powder. Apply this powder on areas with ants. On the other hand, you can just place dried or fresh peppermint herb on the same areas without making the powder. Actually, put a bunch of peppermint all over your house, since the peppermint and other mint herbs` odor repels ants and all other insects, such as mosquitoes, while it will suit your senses.

    2.     Lemon juice. Another efficient natural pest control agent, which is perhaps even easier to use than peppermint, is a lemon juice. That`s right, a plain lemon fruit. Squeeze the lemon, make a juice, mix with water, and spray it all over the ant infested areas. After that, make yourself a nice lemonade and enjoy.

    3.     Vinegar. Another natural ant exterminator at hand is vinegar from your fridge. Again, mix it with water, make a spray, and apply it. That`s all you have to do. Moreover, use vinegar for cleaning the counters and floor instead of chemicals.  Also, you can use lemon juice for cleaning the dishes. Or better yet, mix vinegar, lemon juice and water, add some peppermint, and you got yourself the best natural ant exterminator and detergent.

    4.     Dish soap. Maybe you have already noticed, but all of these items used for ants and other pest control are already in your own house. Mix your dish soap with water, and spray the solution over the ants. The same thing as in case of vinegar and lemon juice.

    5.     Salt and pepper. More of the kitchen ant exterminators! Just boil water and then add salt and pepper.  Make a spray and apply it on areas infested with ants.

    You could perhaps mix all of the mentioned natural pest control agents and make your own ant exterminator spray. Mix salt, pepper, dish soap, vinegar, lemon juice and peppermint, and put it in a spray bottle. However, if you are not satisfied with these and many other natural methods, or if you become terrified at the sight of too many ants in your house, then call a bug exterminator to solve the problem (http://bugsycal.com/).

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  16. blog-0186447001416501419.png

    In a culture that recycles over 150 million metric tons of metallic materials each year in the US alone, one cannot honestly say that there is no recycling effort taking place. Yet, many people are not aware of the many benefits that can be derived from a comprehensive effort to clean up the environment. Our article below covers several direct benefits produced today by scrap metal recycling operations across the US.

    Economic Reasons

    The US scrap metal recycling industry in 2008 resulted in the creation of more than 85,000 jobs and $86 billion being generated in revenue. That same year, the US exported roughly 44 million metric tons of scrap commodities that resulted in a more balanced US trade economy. Production of everyday items such as staples, paper clips, fasteners, jewelry, tools, city infrastructures and elements of buildings themselves all make up the scrap metal industry.

    Today, the industry is not only good for the environment, but it's good for business as well. Over 450,000 new jobs were created within the last three years at a time when the economy appeared to be in dire straits. Best of all, they were high quality, good-paying jobs that fed money back into a fragile and stagnant economy.

    Energy/Natural Resources

    Producing metals from virgin ore is an expensive process--both naturally and economically. However, the recycled scrap metal process not only reduces the amount of greenhouse gas emissions, but it also helps preserve the earth’s precious natural resources.

    For instance, using recycled material saves up to 92 percent aluminum, 90 percent copper and more than 56 percent of steel stockpiles. Moreover, the recycling of just one ton of steel preserves more than 2,500 pounds of iron, 1,400 pounds of coal and more than 120 pounds of limestone. In addition, one ton of recycled aluminum helps conserve 8 tons of bauxite ore and 14 megawatt hours of electrical energy.

    Ecological/Environmental Benefits

    In a concentrated effort to preserve the ecological system, one cannot stress enough the importance of having a comprehensive program for recycling of scrap metals. Being that scrap metals are as usable, malleable and less expensive to produce then virgin material, it’s crucially important to have professional recyclers do the taxing work of removal and recycling according to General Recycling Industries Ltd., one of the many Edmonton scrap yards.

    All things considered, there are no valid reasons for not recycling scrap metals. The scrap metal industry consistently proves itself as being cost effective for those involved inside the industry and outside of it. But more importantly, as the obvious stewards of earth’s resources, scrap metal processing just may help avoid a possible future ecological disaster.

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