2014: Make it Your “Do Something” Year

Good evening everyone, how’s it going? Tonight I’d like to discuss the very broad topic of biodiversity. What’s biodiversity? It’s basically the collection and variation of all living things on Earth, and it’s very important that we maintain and take care of it.

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During the past decades, the world has further and further exploited environmental resources, which has had a deleterious effect on wildlife populations around the world. We all hear about how the “rain forests are being cut down” and how “the ozone is depleting”…these statements are very true and their effects will shape our lives later on in the future. 

Now, I don’t mean to be an alarmist or anything, but according to David Olsen, (Inhabitant) and other environmental analysts,

“A conservative estimate is that well over a hundred species a day are going extinct, with the rate of disappearing species accelerating as natural habitats shrink, fragment, and degrade and commercial exploitation of vulnerable species escalates. The loss of species is irreversible and the loss of old-growth natural habitats irretrievable within centuries. The fewer the species remaining on this planet, the more tenuous our own existence.”

Seriously people of the world? Seriously? This is totally unacceptable! But you know what the great thing is though? You can make a difference, no matter how corny that statement sounded. If there’s only one thing I took out of my WYSE experience last year, it’s that anybody at all can make a difference, but it all starts in the home. 

Most of you guys have probably seen those ASPCA and PETA, etc commercials with the sad puppies and kittens saying “Give me a home!” And if you guys are anything like me, those commercials are tear-jerkers. Well, think of all the other poor animals out there, that really don’t have a voice. Who will take care of them if no one speaks up? Here’s what we can do.

1. Get educated. Know what the environmental issues are. Know what’s happening in other countries and know the current policies towards deforestation, tracking, wildlife trade, etc. The more you know, the better you can make small differences in your life that could contribute to the environmental effort.

2. If you live in a very politically active area, try lobbying for environmental rights, or join a protest/demonstration. The civil rights marchers got somewhere by demonstrating, why can’t we?

3. Lastly, just make differences in the way you live. Give a little to the WWF each month, or volunteer at a zoo, or pet shelter. Educate more people, recycle, start composting, the possibilities are endless. If we all just pitch in a little bit, we can change society, and the environment could be pristine again.

So go, and “Just do it”, as Nike says, and make 2014 the year of caring.

Goodnight everyone :),

– Claire

 

Easy Tips and Tricks for Recycling!

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Most people have started to recycle in the last few years due to all the “Eco” and “Green” hype going around, yet some still do not or don’t do as much as they might could. Today I’ll share with you some really simple tips that can make recycling easier and more convenient.

1.) Place your recycling bin(s) as close as you can to you. By this, I mean that if your bins are indoors, place them right beside your trash can, and if they’re outside, place them right outside your door or in your garage. When you make it more convenient for yourself, you’ll be more likely to actually throw your trash in the recycling bin.

2.) If you didn’t know, you can still recycle things that have touched food. For instance, don’t throw your empty milk carton into the trash. Rinse it out in the sink and it’ll be recycle-friendly! Although you can’t recycle anything with food on it you can’t wash off, there’s a lot of plastic, cardboard, and other stuff you can easily wash when your done with it. Don’t forget your water bottles and cans! Speaking of icky water bottles, check out this post on why you shouldn’t use them anymore.

3.) Don’t worry; you can still recycle food! If you have a backyard, or a community garden or anything like that, compost! To create a compost bin, add green matter such as your fruit and vegetable waste, weeds, glass clippings, etc. Then add a layer of brown matter like dead leaves, dead plants, sawdust, etc. Keep layering and adding your waste, making sure to add water if the pile gets too dry. Turn over your pile every few weeks, and soon you should have great compost to garden with! Remember though, never compost meat or fish, bones, oil/fats or plastics.  

4.) Most local dumps offer discounts or even free “dumping” for people that bring in their recycle bins! Check out your local dump to see what their policy is.

Hopefully you learned something new, and Happy Recycling Everyone!

Comment with your recycling tips! And stay tuned for a “Classy Glamorous Look” coming tomorrow!

Fun and Easy Ways to Be Green!

I don’t know about you, but trying to think of ideas on being green is tough. Of course, there is always the whole “Turn the faucet off when you brush” or “Start a compost pile” thing. But that’s no fun! While I was at the WYSE summer program, I came up with a “game” of sorts and heard about an awesome way to get food!

   Here’s my game: It’s called the Fast and Furious Shower!
   How you play: Go to your phone’s timer and start it right as your hopping in the shower! Cleanse yourself AS FAST AS YOU CAN!!!! And see how long you take! Can you get down to five minutes? four? three? I DARE YOU TO TRY IT!
   Ok, now to the other cool way to be green!
   Instead of buying your meats and produce from the grocery store, check out http://www.localharvest.org/csa/. You can use this website to find CSA (community supported agriculture) farms in your area! The cool thing is, for a set fee you get a bundle of goodies each week or month right from that farm! They can also deliver it to your house! Isn’t that awesome! So go and support the people who grow your food!
Got any other cool ideas? Comment and tell me all about them!