Friday, January 16, 2015

The Deforestation Epidemic

Did you know that approximately 18 million acres of forest are lost each year to deforestation? Deforestation refers to the destruction of forests in order to free up land for other uses.  Deforestation is a factor that contributes to global warming and affects people in many ways.  Trees take in carbon and greenhouse gas emissions and produce oxygen so forest loss causes greenhouse gasses to increase around 12 to 17 percent.  The clearing of trees is a problem all over the world that has increased over the past 50 years. Deforestation results in the loss of species, greater amounts of carbon emissions being released, altering the water cycle, and causing soil erosion.  Will you join me in working to protect our forests?


Monday, December 29, 2014

Newer washing machines and refridgerators can save energy

Many people wonder: "How much money can an energy efficient washing machine really save you?"
It is a complicated question with a lot of answers but I will try to show you how much use energy efficient washing machines take to pay off.
You can buy a standard washing machine for $300-$650 and an efficient washing machine for $600-$1,600. If one assumes a cost of $440 for the standard machine and $1,000 for the energy saving washing machine, the energy use of a standard washing machine usually costs about $0.62 while energy efficient ones cost about $0.41 per load. There is a difference of $0.21 in those two costs. At the rate of saving $0.21 per load, you would have to do about 2,667 loads to start saving money. Although that seems like a lot of loads, the average family does about 400 washing machine loads per year. On average, it would take you six and a half years to save money which is a long time. Although it will eventually start saving you money over time, if electricity prices increase the amount of time will decrease.  But the main reason that people should buy energy efficient washing machines is if they care about the environment.



Monday, December 8, 2014

You CAN make a difference

There are many people around the world trying to have an impact on global warming but it is really impressive when children make a difference.

Teenager Alex Lin has been committed to helping end the e-waste problem. He has done everything from recycling 300,000 lbs of waste to helping pass a bill in Rhode Island to ban the dumping of e-waste.

When Californians Merit Leighton and Marlowe Peyton learned about the effects of plastic pollution, they began an effort to put a stop to it. They began Plastic Patrol and started to raise awareness about how every person's actions make a difference. Right now, Plastic Patrol is filming a series of videos to show simple ways of reducing plastic waste such as reusing water bottles.

Alex and the two girls are just three of the many kids around the world trying to end climate change. It goes to show that everyone has an impact on our terrestrial planet. To find more children making an impact on global warming, visit the link.


Sunday, November 16, 2014

Wood Chips vs Propane

Now that temperatures are dropping and many people are turning on the heat,it is time to reflect on what you use to fuel your heat. Did you know that instead of using propane, you can use wood chips as your fuel source? Boilers that use wood chips can save people money and have a smaller environmental footprint. Using these pellets can reduce heating bills 40-60% while being a well established system. Because the ash from the wood contains natural materials, it can conveniently be spread around outside. Using wood pellets as fuel has so many upsides that there are almost no reasons not to use it.

Tuesday, October 28, 2014

Reusing Clothing

Did you know that reusing clothing not only has a huge positive affect on our environment, but it's also beneficial to people who cannot afford to buy clothes? If you ever have a chance to donate clothing, you should definitely take advantage of that opportunity and help people who are less fortunate than you while helping the environment. Stores like Second Time Around sell used clothes. Since making clothing wastes a lot of materials, buying from and giving to stores like this can reduce your waste.


Wednesday, October 15, 2014

Pentagon recognizes Global Warming as an "Immediate Threat"

The Pentagon has recently issued a statement saying Global Warming poses an immediate threat to national security, and increases risks of terrorism, infectious disease, global poverty and food shortages. 
“The loss of glaciers will strain water supplies in several areas of our hemisphere,” Mr. Hagel said. “Destruction and devastation from hurricanes can sow the seeds for instability. Droughts and crop failures can leave millions of people without any lifeline, and trigger waves of mass migration.”
The announcement also states how the military will adapt to rising sea levels, increasingly violent storms and widespread droughts. The Defense Department will start by integrating plans for climate change risks across all of its operations.
The reason for the increased risk of terrorism is because they infer that if Syrian farmers have to move to cities because of droughts, the youth will be more likely to join extremist groups.
The fact that the Pentagon has shifted from considering climate change to being a "future" threat - to it being a "present" threat, is a significant shift that signals how this issue can no longer be ignored.  Do you agree?  - Liam


Monday, October 13, 2014

Use Water-Efficient Shower Heads!

Did you know that standard shower heads use 2.5 gallons of water per minute? Showering is one of the biggest ways to use water at home, adding up to almost 17 percent of residential indoor water use. For the average family that's nearly 40 gallons per day! In the United States, the total amount of water wasted in showering for a year is nearly 1.2 Trillion Gallons. Most water saving shower heads only use 2 gallons of water per minute, saving nearly 2,900 gallons of water per year for an average family. The average family could also save 370 kilowatt hours of electricity annually while using these efficient shower heads, enough to power a house for 13 days. If all these things are not good enough reasons for you to switch to water efficient shower heads, a final reason to get one is because it is great for the environment.