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Green Purse Alerts!

Why My Purse is Green

Because I believe…

  • the fastest, most effective way to stop polluters is by pressuring them in the marketplace
  • women can be the world’s most powerful economic and environmental force if we intentionally shift our spending to the best green products and services
  • women have the power right now to solve many of our most serious environmental problems by using our green purses to make a difference
  • women must act – intentionally, collectively, and with the full force of our purse power behind us – if we hope to leave our children and grandchildren a better world.
  • Planning a Trip to Europe? Ride a Bike When You Get There.

    According to cycletoworkday.org, there are currently more than 760,000 commuters cycling to work regularly in the UK alone. This two-wheeled trend is happening all over Europe, with bike hire schemes becoming one of the most popular ways for vacationers and holiday makers to explore a city. 

    Because hiring or renting a bike is so flexible, travelers can design their own personal tour and see a city at their own pace. Because biking uses pedal power rather than fossil fuels, it's also a great way to see the sites without contributing to air pollution or climate change. Travel comparison site momondo, the sponsors of this post, have created this helpful round up of five top European cities and their top tips on how to make the most of their bike hire schemes.

    Bike-sharing-infographic-head (1)

    If you've rented a bike before while on vacation, or you regularly commute to work by bike, please share your experiences with us.

    NOTE: Sponsorships allow us to bring you excellent content and expertise at no cost to you. Our editorial opinions remain our own. Thanks.

     

    When Should You Sue to Protect the Environment?

    When should you take polluters, companies, governments or other citizens to court for failing to protect the environment?

    Air pollution The simple answer is, "When they break the law."

    In most nations of the world, important laws now exist to protect clean air and clean water, minimize the environmental impacts of destructive practices like logging and mining, prevent toxic dumping and require companies to clean up hazardous waste, safeguard wetlands and wilderness areas, and keep watch over wildlife.

     In the U.S., the bedrock of environmental law is the National Environmental Policy Act, which was passed in 1970 to protect the environment against both public and private actions that might harm eco-systems. In Australia, it is the Environment Protection and Biodiversity Conservation Act. Other countries have other legislation in place.  The power of these laws lies in the ability they provide to hold polluters accountable for the havoc they wreak on natural resources as well as human well-being.

    Continue reading "When Should You Sue to Protect the Environment?" »

    5 Ways to Drive More Efficiently and Save Money, Use Less Gas

    Speedometer As you shop around to find a fuel-efficient vehicle, you'll notice different average mileage figures given for driving in the city and on a motorway.

    Yet there are many other reasons why a car's mileage could vary. Fuel economy can fluctuate not only according to the car you drive, but also to how you drive it.

    You might be driving a car that is supposed to achieve 50 mpg, but if you gun the accelerator and leave the engine idling, you won't get anywhere near such mileage in real life.

    Here are a few tips to keep in mind to help you maximize your car's fuel economy, courtesy of the fuel-efficiency minded folks at Carsales. Don't forget that fuel efficiency leads up to big money savings at the gas pump. 

    1. Stick to the speed limit.

    It's a surprisingly common misconception that if you can reduce the length of your trip by driving faster, you'll burn less fuel. In reality, you burn fuel at a more rapid pace when you exceed speeds of 65mph. Wind resistance increases at higher speeds, meaning your car has to work harder to keep up the pace. The most efficient speed you can travel is between 55 – 65mph, after which efficiency will rapidly decrease. Driving at a speed of 85mph would use 40% more fuel than if you drove at 70mph. When on the motorway, try using cruise control to maintain a safe and consistent speed. 

    2. Reduce your car's weight.

    Another way to boost efficiency is by reducing your car's weight and drag. Remove extra roof racks if you're not using them, because these increase wind resistance. Try to eliminate extra weight from inside the car, as well. If you've been carrying around spare luggage or packages in the backseat or trunk, it's time to clear them out. You can save 1% on fuel for every 45kg/99lbs that you remove from the vehicle. 

    Continue reading "5 Ways to Drive More Efficiently and Save Money, Use Less Gas" »

    Indoor Plants Refresh Stinky Air, Make People Happy!

    We spend close to 90% of our time indoors. Shouldn’t we want to be breathing the cleanest, freshest air possible?

      Peace lily One way we can do so is by installing plants in the rooms where we work and live.  Gaddy's Plant Hire, a company based in Australia that specializes in renting out plants to offices and special events (and our sponsors for this post), has taken to heart the recommendations of the U.S. National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) to use plants for air purification.

     Though plants don’t particularly look like air filters, they are. Plants emit water vapor that helps pull contaminated air down around a plant’s roots, where it is then converted into food for the plant. The more air circulates through the roots of the plants, the more effective the plants are at reducing pollution.  As you might expect, some plants are better air purifiers than others. For example,

    Continue reading "Indoor Plants Refresh Stinky Air, Make People Happy!" »

    Is It Time to Give Your Office a Green Make-Over?

    Greencleaning  People spend almost a third of their lives at work, yet many offices and industries haven’t taken important steps to “green” their facilities. That’s a mistake, for two key reasons:

    ·         1) Research shows that productivity increases when people work in a healthier environment.

    ·         2) Cleaning green can actually save companies money by reducing waste and materials use as well as the number of sick days employees claim.

    Plus, conventional cleaning products can have a negative impact on the environment. Aerosol sprays emit fine particles, contributing to air pollution that can irritate the eyes, skin or lungs. Wastewater flushed down a drain can enter the water system and harm aquatic life. Throwaway cleaning materials, like paper towels and single-use plastic bottles, can create a lot of trash.

    But how do you make the transition to green cleaning? GreenFacilities, an environmentally certified cleaning consultancy based in the UK and the underwriters of this article,  recommend a process that can work for many kinds of businesses, from retailers to gyms to hospitals and everything in between.

    Start with an Audit

    Take stock of how your business is currently being cleaned. For example,

    ·         * What chemicals are in the cleaning products that are being used? They may be “standard” to the cleaning industry, but that doesn’t necessarily mean they are safe when people are exposed to them repeatedly over time. 

    ·         * What machinery is being used? Is it effective at actually pulling dirt and dust out of your indoor environment, rather than simply displacing them? Does it operate as efficiently as possible, using energy and water wisely?

    ·         *How much waste does the cleaning process generate? Do cleaners use throwaway paper towels and one-use plastic bottles, rather than reusable containers and washable cloth?

    ·        * How much time and money are being spent on cleaning currently? Where can you shift spending to greener products and services that will protect the workplace as well as the environment?

     Develop a Green Cleaning Plan

     Once you have the complete picture, take steps to green every part of the process.

    ·         * Ensure that any chemicals used in your workplace minimize human exposure to toxins and have no negative environmental impacts. Look for certifications from non-profit organizations like Green Seal, which have issued environmental standards for green cleaning products used in offices and industrial settings.

    ·         * Replace old and outdated equipment with newer models that save energy and water and are effective at eliminating dust and dirt.

    ·         * Switch to cleaning cloths, refillable bottles, and any other cleaning accessories that can be reused, rather than thrown away. Determine what can be recycled, and ensure that it is.

    Create a Schedule

     With new green processes in place, optimize your current cleaning schedule to increase effectiveness while reducing costs. In most cases, the transition from “dirty” to green cleaning should be straightforward and easy to implement in relatively short order. Your employees – and the planet – will thank you!

     

    NOTE: Underwriters enable us to bring you expert content at no cost to you. Our editorial opinions are our own. Thanks.

    Image: http://www.northwestern.edu/sustainability/news/2013/articles/keeping-it-clean-and-green.html

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

     

    Organic Food is Better. End of Argument.

    This infographic from the Organic Center explains the many benefits of eating organically.

    Organic-2

    Organic Milk is Healthier for You, Study Shows

    Milk_img1  Organic milk is healthier and more nutritious than milk produced the old fashioned way.

    Scientists at Washington State University compared the milk that came from two groups of cows. The "old fashioned" cows had been fed a diet of mostly corn, probably living in what are called "confined animal feedlots" where they are also treated with hormones and antibiotics. The organic cows were raised in pastures, where they ate grassy plants. Both groups produce milk, but it turns out that the milk from organic cows has much higher levels of polyunsaturated fatty acids, the "healthy fats" that are good for the heart.

    Dr. Charles Benbrook, who led the research team, said, "We were surprised by the magnitude of the nutritional quality differences."

    Both organic and old fashioned milk contain two kinds of fatty acids. Omega-3 helps improve heart health. Omega-6 poses risks for cardiovascular disease, cancer, inflammation and auto-immune disease.

    Continue reading "Organic Milk is Healthier for You, Study Shows" »

    With More Natural Disasters, Do You Need More -- or Different -- Insurance?

    Tornado shattered house Natural disasters aren’t going away any time soon. In fact, given the increasing effects that climate change is having on the weather, scientists expect the number of natural disasters globally to grow. You only need to review the skyrocketing frequency of hurricanes, cyclones, tornadoes, fires and floods that have destroyed homes and communities in the last couple of years to be clear on at least one thing: it’s better to protect yourself before you’re hit by a natural disaster than try to pick up the pieces afterwards.

    At a conference I recently attended on rebuilding sustainably after natural disasters strike, the audience of educators, first responders, disaster experts, scientists, elected officials, public interest advocates and business leaders all agreed: most people do not have enough insurance to protect themselves if a natural disaster hits. As the sponsor of this post, the Australian insurer HBF also points out that most travelers don’t carry adequate insurance in the event their holiday or business trip is disrupted by a natural disaster, either.

    HOW MUCH INSURANCE DO YOU NEED?

    Continue reading "With More Natural Disasters, Do You Need More -- or Different -- Insurance?" »

    Butter for Your Hands, Not Your Bread, Plus Much More from EcoCentric Mom

    EcoCentric Mom Box November It's that time of year when my hands are starting to feel so dry, you'd think I lived in the desert. Nope, it's just winter setting in, along with its prescription for cracking skin and painfully tight dryness. Happily, this month's EcoCentric Mom subscription box included butter - hand butter that is, made by The Seaweed Bath Co. from shea butter, neem oil and bladderwrack seaweed extract. I'm not sure what a bladderwrack is, but this balm feels great, and smells yummy, too, with a hint of citrus (or maybe that's what bladderwrack smells like...).

    Not to leave lips at the mercy of winter, either, the subscription box also included both the 3 Little Girls Holistic Oange Pop Lip Gloss, and lip scrub and lip colour from Lauren Brooke cosmetiques. The organic sugar in the lip scrub helps smooth chapped lips, then moisturizes with organic lecithin and shea butter. The lip colour is infused with organic pomegranate and non-GMO vitamin E. And of course, the lip gloss is organic, too. Winter or summer, I actually put lip gloss on top of lip colour for extra moisturizing, so am glad to try out both these products.

    Continue reading "Butter for Your Hands, Not Your Bread, Plus Much More from EcoCentric Mom" »

    Children Slammed by Typhoons, War Need Your Help - Today.

    Philippines Kids should be able to be kids, right? They should be able to run and laugh and go to school and aim for a future that is bright and hopeful and full of promise.

    But for children in the Philippines and Syria, that definitely is not the case. And even though those places may be worlds away from you, I hope you'll stop for a moment, read about the plight little ones in these two forlorn countries face and, through UNICEF Australia, decide there is something you can do to help.

    THE PHILIPPINES

    On Friday, November 8, a powerful typhoon called Haiyan struck the Philippines. You probably saw some of the initial news reports about the typhoon's impact on communities across the country. Powerful winds ripped roofs off housing and uprooted trees. Flooding and the collapse of buildings killed thousands of people. Parents were separated from their children; millions of people lost their homes, their belongings, and their livelihoods.

    Continue reading "Children Slammed by Typhoons, War Need Your Help - Today." »

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