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Pesticide Exposure: Rules Making These Chemicals More Green

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HannahWhittenly

Making Earth Green Again How Recycling Improves the Quality of Life Worldwide.jpg

Recycling isn't just about tossing your plastic and glass into a blue bin at the end of the week. There are many different ways to limit the amount of waste that you and your family send to the landfill. A few changes to your daily habits could help you reduce your carbon footprint and protect the environment around you.

Put an End to Water Waste

A single leaky pipe or running toilet can waste over 200 gallons of water per day. That amount of wasted water will put quite a bit of strain on your local aquifers and other water sources. Homeowners should constantly check their water meters to see if they might have any leaks that are affecting their utility bills. You should also consider updating your plumbing system so that your greywater is reused in your toilets or out on your lawn.

Read the Labels on Your Electronics

Electronics can be incredibly devastating to the environment when they are not properly disposed of. Many of them contain harsh chemicals and acids that might not decompose for hundreds of years. If you are unsure of what to do with your old electronics, then you should call your local trash company to see if they have a program to recycle old devices.

Recycle During Your Larger Projects

Quite a bit of waste is created during most home renovations. Before starting your next project, you might want to consider renting a dumpster, such as one from Lakeshore Recycling, instead of leaving piles of debris in your yard or filling up your regular trash bin with potentially hazardous materials. This is especially important if your home is more than a few decades old. Many older homes are filled with toxic materials such as lead and asbestos.

Compost Your Food

Even though your food products will quickly decompose in a dump, you can actually improve the health of your local plants by composting at home. Compost bins and holes can be filled with a wide variety of leftover materials including egg shells, coffee grounds, bones, fat, and the skin off of fruit. When left for a short period of time, it will turn into a natural fertilizer that is extremely good for your trees, plants, and grass.

Those who spend more time learning about the recycling process might find out that they can recycle or reuse many of their everyday items. Not only will that help your local environment, but it will also slow down the rate at which manufacturing plants must continue to use natural resources.

HannahWhittenly

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With the average person in the United States generating over 4 pounds of trash per day, the importance of recycling should be blatantly clear. The things we discard have long been finding their way into the soil that produces our food, the water we drink, and the air we breathe. Our trash contributes to the break-down of ecosystems and directly kills millions of animals per year.

Sadly, the trash itself isn’t the only problem. Not only are we throwing it out in the first place, but we are manufacturing more of the same products that we discard. When we manufacture new glass jars, aluminum cans, or paper, we are cutting down more trees, using more energy, emitting more greenhouse gases, and using more water.

What is the answer to this conundrum? Yes, recycling! Start with the no-brainers: aluminum cans, plastic bottles, glass jars, cardboard, newspapers and magazines. Yet, don’t stop there—keep going! Here are 10 things that you should consider recycling the next time you’re faced with the decision of whether or not to throw them out:

1.    Mattresses: When you purchase a new mattress, be sure that your retailer participates in a mattress recycling program where they will properly discard your old one.
2.    Plastic Cards: For example, gift cards, credit cards and hotel keys. This year’s used up gift card can live again as next year’s gift card.
3.    CDs & DVDs: With the ability to stream and download, we don’t really need these any more. That means that so many are getting thrown out. Consider donating them or taking them somewhere that will recycle them properly. 
4.    Writing Utensils: You can send that cup full of dried up pens, markers, highlighters, mechanical pencils, and even those stray caps for recycling.
5.    Packing peanuts: The Styrofoam variety are a big no-no for the landfills, but can be recycled into many different products.
6.    Trophies: Your old high school trophies can be made into shiny, new trophies through special programs.
7.    Electronic waste: Electronic devices should always be disposed of properly. Ware Disposal and other recycling companies actually specialize in depositing these items safely. 
8.    Auto fluids: If you change your own fluids, proper disposal is a must. Most automotive stores have a recycling program, and so just make sure that you ask whether or not they have one before you go to them for services.
9.   Toothbrushes and razors: These and many other personal care products can be dismantled and recycled so that they don’t pile up in the landfill.
10.   Christmas Trees: Most communities have recycling programs that will turn your holiday tree into anything from erosion barriers to fish habitats, which means that things that come from nature can go right back to benefiting the earth again.

Most of these ideas are fairly easy to accomplish and really only the beginning to all of what you can do. Doing a quick internet search for recycling centers in your area will get you started, though. A little bit of knowledge and a few extra minutes of your time is all it takes to make a lasting impact on our planet for generations to come.

 

HannahWhittenly

home-634571_1920.jpgHaving mature trees on your property can increase the value of your home by as much as 10 percent, but they also create a number of unique risks. A falling branch or uprooted tree might cause thousands of dollars in damage in the blink of an eye, and your insurance is not necessarily required to cover the repairs. Here are some tips for keeping your trees healthy as well as a look at a few signs that it might be time to remove a tree.

Identify Your Trees                            

Correctly identifying all of the trees on your property is one of the most important steps in this process. Once you know what type of trees you have, then you will know how to properly care for them and what they look like when damaged. Most trees can easily be identified with a few key features such as their leaves, bark, fruit, flowers, cones, and general size.

Schedule Extermination Services

Extermination services aren't just about keeping bugs out of the inside of your home. Certain species such as termites, carpenter ants, and bark beetles will wreak havoc on your trees and the rest of the plants on your property. Within just a few months, these insects can damage and weaken your trees to the point that they must be removed entirely.

Regularly Check for Visible Damage

As a general rule, families should regularly inspect any trees that are within close proximity to their home at least a few times a year. During these inspections, you should be trying to find clear signs of damage such as cracked limbs, holes from insects, leaning trunks, and roots being pulled out of the ground. Discolored bark and leaves are two signs that your trees might be infected with a disease. Also, if any branches are hanging too close to the roof of your home, then that is a clear sign that your tree needs some pruning done.

Consult With an Arborist

A professional arborist, like those at Smitty’s Tree Service Inc, can certainly trim and prune trees, but that is not all that they do. These specialists can help with issues such as stabilizing trunks, identifying signs of disease, and relocating trees when necessary. Just as with many other maintenance projects around your home, it is a good idea to schedule preventative services well before any major damage occurs. Arborists can also fertilize your trees so they continue to thrive for years to come.

Homeowners are responsible for the safety of all family members and guests on their property, and that is why it is so important to keep a close eye on any trees that could create a dangerous situation or expensive damage.

HannahWhittenly

It may surprise many business owners that there are many simple tips they can use to get a company on a greener track. Usually, the impetus to consider going green occurs when there is proof that eco-friendly methods are also more economically advantageous. The first step to get your company looking a little greener is to start with a plan and to learn your most local resources for basic assistance and information to make your plan more efficient and cost-effective. 
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Tips to a Greener Track 
You probably already think about how much waste comes out of your company. Disposing of waste may incur unnecessary costs and is a huge burden for some types of industries. It is important to begin your plan by studying where, when, and how waste occurs within your company. For example in small offices, paper waste is usually a major source of unnecessary costs. This can be avoided by redesigning the office system so that less paper is used. This will also provide the added benefit of less problems with paper dust and paper mites. Look at how much food waste comes out of company provided lunches and see if a potluck or different catering service might be a better option.

Saving Energy
With the numerous advancements in using more modern energy, all businesses need to rethink their energy use. In a business with minimal hours of operation, install a programmable thermostat to save on the cost of energy and by association, contribute to a greener environment. Spend time reviewing energy upgrades from your local energy company. This offers a greener solution and lowers your energy costs. Companies like
Lumo Energy can help you compare different electricity and gas packages so you’ll know if you really are saving money.

Simple Tips for a Greener Track
In most cases, businesses can encourage their employees to choose the newest, greenest products for home and business use. Purchase recycled paper and paper products like recycled coffee filters for business coffee makers. Use recycled paper towels and toilet tissue in company bathrooms. Opt for liquid soap made from natural ingredients rather than synthetics. There are many
other small tips you can use as well so research well to see what work for your business.

Recycling
Recycling is a major step forward to put your company on a greener track. Many items in companies today are recyclable. This includes plastics, glass, aluminum, and colored and printed materials. Create a regular schedule of recycling for your company by engaging the services of a local recycling facility. Most of these facilities offer pickup services. The fastest way to implement a recycling program in your company is to provide recycling receptacles that are readily accessible at various locations within the building. Employees quickly adapt to recycling programs in your company when they have quick access for disposal of the most frequently used items.

 

Helping your company go green really doesn’t have to be a huge paradigm shift, or even very expensive. Simply use what you have and the local resources available to make better overall choices and make more energy saving possible.

HannahWhittenly

Owning a home means sometimes your place will get fairly messy. You need a routine cleaning schedule to ensure the general protection of your home and family and maintenance to keep things preserved. As a greater emphasis has been placed on being environmentally friendly, people have begun to understand the need for a greener way to clean. Countless products exist that make this task simple, and most of the ingredients are probably already in your home. Here are some simple ways to get your house spiffy and still be kind to the earth.
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Craft an All-Purpose Cleaner
The name of these ingredients speak for themselves by being safe to use on virtually anything, but there is also a multitude of ingredients that can be used in these cleaners, and each of them serves a different purpose. A common mixture includes mixing 1/2 teaspoon of baking soda with a drop of liquid soap and two cups of hot water. This mixture only takes on the odor of the soap and works to abate growing bacteria, caked on dirt, and is a great way to clean bathroom stains. The base of this cleaner allows for the incorporation of other important green items, like vinegar, as the acidity of the liquid kills all types of bacteria, ultimately making it ideal for kitchens and bathrooms. 

 


One Simple Fruit with Endless Possibilities
Whether they are squeezed to make a drink, used to leave a house smelling fresh, or made into a heavy-duty cleaner, lemons are always a good idea. The acidity of a lemon works as a bleaching agent which makes it ideal for laundry, washing white surfaces and breaking down areas that collect a lot of germs like kitchen counters. Squeezing two lemons into a spray bottle with one tablespoon of baking soda makes for a profound, eco-friendly bleach. If you desire the fragrance to be more potent, though, consider reducing the baking soda to 1/2 tablespoon. Aside from mimicking a bleach, lemons are rich with citrus flavonoids which are powerful components that fight free radicals from entering the body. When used in rooms of the home where germs are the most concentrated, this cleaner guarantees a home free of sickness, disease, and even insects. 

 


Invest in an Energy Efficient Vacuum Cleaner
Sometimes sweeping is not sufficient enough to rid your floor of debris and a broom is unable to reach every corner of a room. As a result, investing in a quality vacuum is essential to keep things truly dirt free. Some of the
best Central Vacuum models are quiet, save energy, and have the ability to reuse the bags. The necessary power does the trick without straining valuable natural resources.
 


For the Living Room: Corn Meal and Olive Oil
People with children understand that spills are part of everyday life, but few cleaners exist that will remove the mess without harming playing children or pets. From the carpet to furniture, a natural, non-toxic cleaner is needed; this is where corn meal and olive oil are able to work their magic. Olive oil rubbed on a rag acts as a powerful furniture polish that will leave tables, chairs, and wood floors looking brand new. Corn meal on the other hand, acts as a powerful absorption tool that effortlessly lifts spills off of carpets and other fabrics. 

 


In sum, green cleaners are not only beneficial for the environment and the safety of your home and family, but work wonders on a household budget. All of the ingredients used in green cleaning are often already in the pantry or fridge and if they are not, they are easily attainable at stores throughout the world.

HannahWhittenly

The key to living healthy starts with farming green. Organic farming is the most recent trend that has now become a billion-dollar industry. Millions of farmers are participating in new techniques that reduce the reliance on heavy machinery and toxic pesticides. If you are interested in green farming, know that this industry is new and growing fast. Learn about a few initiatives that have grown in this past decade. 
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Organic Farming
Organic farming is the boldest and most environmentally safe step farmers today have taken. This
type of farming involves using few or no chemicals to plant crops and the fertilizers used are all natural without toxic or artificial ingredients. 
Many crops planted into the ground are eaten or put into skincare products. Organic farming has reduced the harmful effects associated with toxins and pest immunity.
Farmers like organic methods because machinery is usually not involved and the instructions are easy to follow. Becoming organic means using the tools and materials that come from nature.

No-Tillage Farming
Soil is essential in any sustainable farming plan. No-till farming reduces the use of tilling to break up the soil which causes less damage, such as excessive drying and loss of nutrients. Instead of tilling the soil, farmers use herbicides to get rid of weeds. They engage in crop diversity to reduce the growth of weeds naturally. The use of heavy machinery is reduced, and the soil retains its natural state.

Recycling 
Recycling is not a new technique but has increased in popularity over the years. In front of most suburban homes are recycling bins that were not found there a few decades ago. Most products nowadays are being reused and recycled. Glass, metal, and wood come in recycled versions that are exactly the same as the original ones. Green farmers are encouraged to buy recycled tools and most already use quality products like
Accurate Products Inc. rubber grommets for their shipping and harvesting processes. Many of them recycle the materials used to produce crops. They build compost piles consisting of soil, leaves and rotting food and are used as natural fertilizers.

In the past, green farming was an experimental approach to traditional farming. Few people knew about the idea or its practices. Today, it is an industry that is internationally practiced and regulated by governments it is important to know how farmers have reduced their effects on the environment.

HannahWhittenly

It's almost impossible to avoid being confronted with waste. Wherever we look, people and industries produce mass amounts of it, littering our environment and spreading toxic chemicals. This alarming trend can however be reversed by using green technologies, like the following.
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Vertical Farming
In vertical farming, plants are grown indoors hydroponically on stacked shelves under artificial light. The crops grow far more quickly than with traditional soil farming methods, plus the land use area is drastically reduced. This can make vertical farms up to 100 times more productive than outdoor fields.

LED Lighting
LED lights reduce the waste of electricity since they use much less power than regular incandescent bulbs. However, an even more exciting fact might be that using LED lights can help reduce the impact of diseases like malaria, a deadly plight, in places like Africa. LED lights have helped the development of vertical farming there, which takes place indoors, without mosquitoes around.

Fuel Cells
A fuel cell combines hydrogen and oxygen to produce electricity, heat, and water. Both the fuel and the by-products are clean, making the device waste-free. Most fuel cells run silently, and are commonly used in buildings, but, so far, there are only a few car models running on fuel cells. Think about the huge improvement of our environment, especially in big cities, if cars were quiet and emission-free.

Free Fuel for Your Car
How would you like to run your car on free fuel? Any diesel vehicle can be readily converted to run on waste vegetable oil instead of toxic diesel. This bio-degradable fuel can be picked up for free from restaurants, who throw it away anyway. The methods of recycling this type of waste have improved with cities like San Francisco even picking up collected food waste.

Wave Energy
Numerous studies have found that wave power could contribute massive amounts to the energy production worldwide. However, many obstacles have prevented the development of larger wave power plants. Cost, design issues, the hostile environment of saltwater and the ocean, have been reasons why wave energy hasn't been developed yet on a larger scale.

 

Water Treatment

We all need fresh, clean water to survive, but getting it can be a challenge. Lead plumbing in older buildings can pose a risk to people, and water waste contaminated with everything from medications and plant waste has been known to harm animals when simply dumped. Luckily companies like Seidler Chemical are making changes by supplying the right kinds of water treatment chlorinators. You can see common ways chemicals are used in this process here.

Green Burial
Finally, if you care about your environmental dead or alive, you may consider a green burial when that time comes. You can choose to be buried in everything from a biodegradable casket to a
mushroom death suit. Another approach could be to have your ashes converted into reef balls for restoration of coral ecosystems.


Would you like to reduce the waste in the world by using these green technologies? If so, which do you find most interesting?

HannahWhittenly

All families should be interested in saving on their energy costs, but it can be difficult for some to achieve these savings during the winter. Energy costs are going to naturally go up as the temperatures cool down, but there are still several ways you can save some money. If you follow these four tips, then you should be able to live comfortably in your home, while still saving a few dollars each month this winter. 
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Lower Water Heater Temperature
Most people have their water heater temperature set higher than they actually need. Setting your water heater around
120 degrees Fahrenheit has the potential to save you a lot this winter. It may take slightly longer to get hotter water in the sink and shower, but the savings makes the wait well worth it. 

Open Curtains during the Day
The sun may not come out every day during the winter months, so you need to take advantage of it when it does appear. Opening the curtains to let the sun in is a great way to naturally heat your home without have to spend any money. Make sure to close the curtains and blinds when the sun goes down so you keep all of this extra heat in your home. 

Turn down Thermostat 
The cold weather outside may compel you to turn up your thermostat a few degrees, but you need to resist this urge if you want to save money. Keeping your home a few degrees cooler than normal has the potential to save you hundreds of dollars during the winter season. You should have no problem staying comfortably warm in your home if you wear a sweater or bundle up with an extra blanket. 

Properly Insulate
Your energy costs are going to be high enough this winter, so don’t add to your own costs with poor insulation. If you do not have the proper insulation, then the warm air from the furnace will escape your home at a faster rate. This requires your furnace to run longer than it should to make up for the escaping warm air. A local heating company like
Cape Fear Air Conditioning & Heating Co., Inc. should be able to direct you to problem areas you might have, and keep your heat pumps running smoothly.

There is no reason to be intimidated by the potentially high energy costs this winter. When you implement these four changes into your normal routine it will help your house run a little less energy, and keep you toasty and warm.

HannahWhittenly

You hear about stories of people who become sick after drinking from the tap in their house, and there are always warnings about the pollutants, bacteria, minerals, and other substances in your water. So how do you know if you water is ok to drink? It's not as hard as you think.

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Get a Report
Checking in with your water company for a consumer confidence report is the first step to knowing if your water is safe. Your water company is required by law to provide you with this report. This report will show any pollutants that have come into contact with your water supply over the past year. Knights Plumbing & Drain also recommend looking at your pipes to make sure they aren’t old or rusting which might give off a strange taste.
 

Government Resources
The Environmental Protection Agency, or EPA, has 18 states participating in their Drinking Water Watch program. This program links to a database of information regarding water quality violation, hazards, and any actions taken by the state to clean up these issues.
If you live in a state that participates in this program(Indiana, Pennsylvania, Louisiana, and others), all you have to do is enter the name of your county or your public water system number, and you will receive a report of the quality test results. If you received a data report, you can then look up any or all the contaminants listed within the EPA's chemical database. Please, be aware that the data does differ depending on the state of which it was pulled.

When you're water supply comes from a private well, you can still look up your well in a state guide, but it becomes a little more cumbersome. If you can't find what you are looking for in
the state guide, then you can contact the state government directly to resolve your issues. Often times the state government has more up-to-date information.
 

Test Yourself
In many cases, there is no way to be absolutely sure your water is safe to drink besides testing it yourself. To do this, call the Safe Drinking Water Hotline to connect you with your local water testing agency. The Water Quality Association can also help you connect with a testing agency. Once connected simply schedule a time they can come to help test your home’s water sources.

Using these steps will help you determine if your drinking water is safe to consume, and will help you keep up to date with issues that have happened recently with your water supply.

HannahWhittenly

While we likely won’t see a world in which every home is solar powered, trash is turned into fertilizer, and everyone grows their own produce, there are a number of things that you do at home to be a little greener. Going green once meant you simply recycled all your trash bags and conserved water when brushing your teeth, but today there are so many more things you can do. If you want to do your part to make your home environment more green, check out these environmentally friendly living tips to help you reduce your carbon footprint from the inside out.

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Conserve Energy
Energy conservation is one of the first steps you can take toward going green, and today it’s easier than ever to implement these energy-saving practices. Here are just a few ways you can start reducing your energy consumption.

Switch your light bulbs. – Incandescent lightbulbs use up to 75 percent more electricity than compact fluorescent bulbs. Switch all of your existing bulbs to fluorescent bulbs and save energy (and money).
Turn the lights off. – Another great way to save energy is making sure lights get turned off when not in use. If you and your family forget to do this, then consider either installing automatic light sensors or timers on your lights to regulate when lights are turned off.
Unplug unused appliances. – Even when not in use, your appliances and other electronics are using electricity. Conserve energy by unplugging unused appliances and electronics, including your television, computer, lights, toaster, and other items.
Install an alarm system with energy efficiency options. – We have all left a light on at home, or even left the heat running when we were going to be gone for the day or even for several days. This is one of the biggest drains on energy, so help yourself and the environment out by installing an alarm system that will help you manage your energy.
NorthStar alarm reviews show great options that allow you remotely power off appliances, control your lighting, and monitor and manage your home energy usage. 

Improve the Air Quality
Another way you can go green at home is by improving the air quality around you. This measure is one few people think about, but is just as effective as other options.

Grow indoor plants. – Plants function as natural filters for the air, removing harmful
pollutants and even odors. Fill your home with natural air cleaners including spider plants, palm trees, and Boston ferns.
Install a carbon monoxide detector. – If you heating unit is emitting carbon monoxide, it is polluting your home and the environment, which can even be deadly. Prevent this type of pollution by installing a carbon monoxide detector available from your local hardware store.

Reduce Toxins
Make an effort to reduce the toxins you use and bring into your home. While this effort isn’t always easy, there are many more options today than ever before.

Get rid of toxic chemical cleaners. – Start with the cleaners you use throughout your home. Ditch toxic chemical cleaners, and choose more natural options instead. There are many varieties available today, but you can also make your own with regular household products like vinegar and baking soda.
Reuse cleaning cloths. – Instead of using paper towels and other disposable items to clean, opt for reusable cloths you can toss in the wash. You’ll cut down on waste and save some money at the same time.

Doing your part to go green at home makes a big difference, and it’s not that hard to do. Start on your path today to a greener home environment with these simple tips.

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