Thursday, June 11, 2009

The Penguin isn't just a Batman character

An interesting but somewhat quiet topic is how our actions are having an effect on the animal population. Although many creatures are being affected around the world with rising temperatures, the most apparent affect is on the colder regions of our earth where the ice and snow are melting as a result of global warming.

The penguin colonies are a species which migrate long distances in order to breed. Researchers are now using a rather lighthearted method to keep track of penguins in Antarctica. They're following the animals poop from space.

Enjoy the clip.

Leia Mais…

Friday, May 22, 2009

What are you teaching your kids?

With Mother's Day come and gone and Father's Day on the horizon, what better time to take a look at the family. The emphasis on the environment is what will the world look like for our children once we are gone. Parent's all around the world are making an effort to do their part to help green the earth. The obvious extension of this is to "teach" our children what we are doing and why. My little boy of 2 1/2 already knows about electricity and our thoughts on wasting energy and water. Here are a couple of things that you can use on a daily fact multiple times a day and can be taught to our children:

- Turn off the lights whenever you leave a room

- Decide what you want before opening the refrigerator door

- Turn off televisions, computers, and game consoles when you're finished using them

Leia Mais…

Saturday, May 9, 2009

Drive your shoes to work

In the midst of a family visit, the topic of the environment among other things came up. The outlook of corporations and their carbon footprint, our individual footprint and the happy median between both.

In British Columbia, up coming is bike to work week. With an obvious target on the emmissions caused by our vehicles, this is an excellent attempt to draw awareness to the commuter. The message is simple here but what of those who may not be able to bike for any number of reasons. Participating only requires a little innovation and imagination. A group of ladies interested in doing their part are car pooling to a location and then lacing up their walking shoes and hitting the concrete the rest of the way. This is a fantastic idea and allows participation in the provincial event. What makes this an even better initiative is that the employer is allowing for a grace period to work for all of those who are involved at whatever level.

At the very least, wherever you are in the world. I challenge you this week to figure out just one car trip or chore that you can turn into a ride or walk.

One trip... I look forward to hearing what that leads to!

Leia Mais…

Tuesday, April 28, 2009

What lights did you turn off?

If we CHOOSE, we can do it.

Leia Mais…

Wednesday, April 22, 2009

Earth Day...8 things you can start doing today!

Top climate saving actions to take in April

April is spring cleaning month - a time to get your home and garden ready for the warmer months ahead. It is also the perfect time to make some changes in your life to lighten your footprint on our planet! Here are some tips to get you started:

1. Enjoy the warmer weather and fresh spring air by walking and/or cycling more, instead of driving. If you walk or bike daily, you can save as much as $3,000 a year in gas, vehicle maintenance and parking!

2. Get your garden ready for summer by composting your kitchen and yard waste in your backyard. Or, if it's offered, separate your organic waste for weekly composting by your municipality.

3. Fight climate change by washing your clothes in cold water. They'll be just as clean and you'll save a lot of energy. Almost 90 per cent of the energy used to wash clothes goes into heating the water!

4. Instead of using your energy-guzzling clothes dryer, use a clothesline to hang up your clothes to dry. After the refrigerator, the clothes dryer is the top energy-using appliance in the house!

5. When your light bulbs burn out, make sure you replace them with CFL bulbs. CFL bulbs are 75 per cent more efficient and last eight times as long as standard bulbs!

6. Did you know that the average food item travels more than 2,000 kilometres before reaching your plate! Reduce greenhouse gases by filling your plate with locally grown fruits and vegetables.

7. When shopping, take a collection of reusable shopping bags with you so you're not using plastic bags, which create waste and greenhouse gas emissions. Remember, bags take from 20 to 1,000 years to break down!

8. After cleaning out your closets, donate your pre-loved items to a charity shop or invite your friends over for a clothing swap. Remember to re-use, repair, and re-wear clothing to reduce your fashion footprint!

It's a start...Have a green day!

Leia Mais…

Sunday, April 5, 2009

CFL's in your home

It is amazing to me, the amount of people I have spoken to, who say that they are doing there part to help save energy and help the environment. However, ACTIONS always speak louder then words.

One of the simplest ways to start is by switching your regular light bulbs to compact flourescent lightbulbs or energy star bulbs, CFL's.

The number one reason that people have for waiting to change their regular bulbs is because they are waiting for the regular bulb to burn out. It's like waiting for someone else to save the earth before you pitch in. If you wait you will continue to pay a premium for the energy you are using. Although small, the first place you should see the improvement is the hydro bill. The amount of kwH used will decrease with the new bulbs. Of course, hand in hand with this is the practice of turning off the lights in rooms you are not actually in.

Today, I took a walk around the house and outdoors and took inventory of what bulbs needed replacing and the proper wattage required to light the room comfortably. I also took into account the rooms with dimmers. A quick drive to the store and voila...instant savings and less energy used.

Take today or this week and look around. How many bulbs can you change? Today I did 5. Can you beat that?

Leia Mais…

Monday, March 30, 2009

Turn an hour into a year

We've shown that, worldwide, we are capable of coming together for one hour to help save our world.

Now we need to take those actions and turn them into lifelong habits. Here's a look a some things we can do daily in our lives.

FOR EARTH HOUR YOU: Take a moonlight walk around your neighbourhood.

The rest of the year: Walk more often to the store instead of driving. Get your bike, scooter or roller blades out and use those as your means of transportation instead of your car.

FOR EARTH HOUR YOU: Cook a dinner with only local foods.

The rest of the year: Shop more at local markets that sell foods from your area. Support restaurants that use locally grown produce.

Plant your own vegetable garden. Buy seasonal local fruits and vegetables in bulk and learn how to can them.

For Earth Hour you: Turn your lights out for an hour.

The rest of the year: Always turn your lights off when you leave a room. Light your house front with solar-powered lights. Replace incandescent bulbs with compact fluorescent ones (CFLs). Compact fluorescents use four times less energy and last eight times longer (8,000 hours instead of 1,000) than incandescent light bulbs. Clever use of reflectors and directional lamps will get the light to where you need it and save energy costs.

FOR EARTH HOUR YOU: Turn your TV/computer off and read a book.

The rest of the year: How often is your TV or computer on and no one is using it? Make a conscious effort to turn them off when not in use. Cut down electrical usage by watching less TV and reading more books, magazines or newspapers. Check out some used book stores for good deals. Sell your used books in a garage sale.

FOR EARTH HOUR YOU: Enjoy a candlelight dinner.

The rest of the year: Have a weekly candlelight dinner. Or enjoy candlelight baths. Invite friends over and use candles for ambience. Tell spooky ghost stories by candlelight. Outside, use candles on your patio in the summer instead of lights.

We can make everyday a little bit of Earth Hour.

Leia Mais…

Sunday, March 29, 2009

Did your vote count?

What did I do for Earth Hour you ask?

It was almost 8:30 and both kids were more then comfortable going to bed to do their part. No need for a night light when a little tea candle could do the job with more flicker.

My better half Tania lit candles around the house. I made sure any unnecessary electronics were unplugged. We sat on the couch with the pleasant darkness and peaceful quiet. We chatted about the kids and how perfect we thought they were, especially when sleeping. We discuessed a few issues like our home, business, and took some fun photos with the candles and kids' toys. We even managed to wonder, how they did it in the past before Thomas Edison put the lightbulb on the map.

We peered out the window to notice a couple of neighbours with lights on throughout the house and wondered how anyone could be so oblivious? We had to check out the rest of the community so out the front door we went and WOW, it was dark almost everywhere. Although, one home right across the street seemed to have voted for Global Warming since even the Christmas Lights were turned on for the Hour. We took some photos of the homes not participating and forwarded the addresses to the WWF. Okay, just kidding about that but come on... An hour?

It was over before we even realized the hour was up. I am curious to see how our town compared with the world.

One Hour was easy.

Perhaps the WWF could have asked for a donation of a dollar from everyone.

How much money do you think they would have raised?

Leia Mais…

Friday, March 27, 2009

25 ways to mark Earth Hour

Here are some ideas for how to spend the hour:

Go outside and look at the stars.
Find a great viewing spot to see your town or city go dark at 8:30 p.m.
Take pictures and post them to the Earth Hour Facebook page.
Go for a lantern walk through a park.
Patronize local restaurants and businesses taking part in Earth Hour.
Gather your family or friends for a candle-lit dinner.
Meet your neighbours at a street or block party.
Have an acoustic music jam.
Talk to your children about how much electricity your family uses. Brainstorm ways to reduce it.
Tell ghost stories.
Listen to the birds, bats or other wildlife.
Play flashlight tag.
Turn your thermostat down by 1 degree. And leave it there.
Play Pictionary with glow-in-the-dark markers.
Change all your light bulbs to energy-efficient versions.
Have a night game of shinny with a glow-in-the-dark puck or ball.
Take a walk in the moonlight.
Have a candlelit bath.
Put a glow stick on your dog's collar or leash and go for a walk.
Toast marshmallows over a tea light candle.
Get out your Ouija board.
Have a beer, wine or scotch tasting in the dark.
Get out the sleeping bags and camp out on the living room floor.
Make a list of ways you could reduce your energy consumption every hour of every day.

The bottom line is DO something...that's all it takes to make a difference.

Leia Mais…

Thursday, March 26, 2009

Is something wrong with our planet?


Images of Global Warming

Twenty days. Twenty thousand still images. A single message. Toronto Star photographer Lucas Oleniuk captures the issue of global warming in a video created entirely by using still images.

Leia Mais…