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Day 33 - Vines

Shoes Vines

I am not going repeat what I already wrote here. A quick synopsis, starting August 1st, 2010 I will publish a picture I take that day everyday for a year (well to be exact I will do this everyday until July 31st, 2011). This is the 33rd of those photographs. Also, there is a Flickr collection called “The Awesome Leftovers” where I put the daily shots (if any) that didn’t make the cut.

I don’t know the street name, but this place is on a small side street on the way to Atlantic Avenue in Brooklyn. I’ll look next time I walk by it.

Check out the rest, Day 33 – A Tree Grows in Brooklyn.

Recycle, Reuse.

-Cara

smokey the bear

I have been super obsessed with trash lately. I think about it with every piece of garbage I throw out. Most of the thoughts I have revolve around, could I have I recycled that, if not, why? I feel that everything we make should be able to be recycled and if you can’t recycle it, don’t make it. Let me also emphasize that means if you can recycle it without releasing deadly toxins into the air, water or land.

I am no saint, I don’t want to have to clean my yogurt container, aluminum foil, plastic everything ever really. I do it, but I do not enjoy the process. I think it has to do with America and its not very user friendly local recycling processes.  There is no national recycling marketing machine out there educating us on what we can and can not recycle throughout our lives. We are not given the tools, for example, recycling bins clearly labeled on what should be contained within them. It is not second nature and could be quite easily.  I learned many things about fire prevention from Smokey the Bear. The Ad Council is a powerful tool to get some recycling PSAs out there.

Another thing is there are no real negative consequences for people who are not recycling, nor are there positive ones for people who do. We all enjoy a little positive reinforcement now and again. There are laws in America against littering in public places, but not for littering in define places. That seems ignorant. We should not be able to litter anywhere. Landfills are a disaster.

I did a little research on garbage decomposition to get myself more motivated. Here is what I came up with.

Glass…most forms of glass will never decompose or biodegrade ever. There is this glass, Obsidian, that dates back to the Cretaceous (Latin for “chalky”) geologic period and system from circa 145.5 ± 4 to 65.5 ± 0.3 million years ago. In the geologic timescale, the Cretaceous follows on the Jurassic period and is followed by the Paleogene period of the Cenozoic era.  For those who don’t want to do the math, that means about 36 million to 65 million year old glass. That’s crazy, some poor dinosaur foot cutting glass. I said it. :]

The good thing about glass is how simple it is to recycle. Virgin glass is primarily made of sand, lime and soda. A glass manufacturer’s boiler must run at about 2192 degrees Fahrenheit (1200 degrees Celsius) to melt the sand, soda, and lime into glass. Making glass from recycled glass uses 32% less energy than making virgin glass because it melts at a much lower temperature. This process is to shatter the glass into small fragments called “cullet”. You then melt that down to make new glass. Products made from recycled glass save on the extraction of raw materials and produce approximately 20% less air pollution and 50% less water pollution than virgin glass. Point, recycle your glass don’t just throw it out.

I think I’ll stop with glass for today, maybe we’ll catch up with plastic bottles and bags at a later date.

Recycle, Reuse.

-Cara

BluePlanetEarth

Zeitgeist (n) – the spirit of the time; the spirit characteristic of an age or generation

Addendum (n) -something to be added

I never watched Zeitgeist: The Movie. I came across Zeitgeist: Addendum the other day and since my thinking hasn’t been the same. It has given me a better sense of focus, new ideas to think about and hope. Look, I am not saying I am drinking the Kool-Aide, there are things I don’t agree with; for one, their take on religion. I get where they are coming from, but I am enlightened to something else.

I will not go on and on about the movie. If you want to watch it for free you can here (although I am not sure why they would choose Google Video to host the movie. It is part of the problem, not the solution. Maybe they feel it will reach a bigger audience, but I am not too sure that is the way to go. UPDATE 1-22-2011 I JUST CLICKED ON THE LINK AND IT GOES TO VIMEO NOW. THAT’S COOL.). I myself downloaded it from someone else.  I am going to watch Zeitgeist: The Movie at some point, but for now I still have a lot to think about with Zeitgeist: Addendum, so I’ll wait. Addendum can definitely stand alone.

I would love to hear people’s opinion after watching the film. I have already had a few cool conversations about it. I have burned it for a couple of people. I would like to keep passing it around and then people can pass their copies around and see how fast it spreads.  I want a better world and I know it is possible.

Do not fear the robots.

-Cara

computer_recycling_pictures

If you live in New York City and have electronics you want to get rid off in a green, eco, recycling way. Here are two upcoming events I found on the Lower East Side Ecology Center’s website:

April 26th, 2009
Central Park
West 67th Street and Central Park West

and

May 2nd, 2009
119 W 23rd Street at Tekserve between 6 & 7th Avenues
Manhattan

Here is what techotrash consists of:

Working and non-working:

Computers (laptop & desktop),
Servers, mainframes
Monitors
Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
Components (hard drives, CD Roms, circuit boards, power supplies, etc,)
TVs,VCR & DVD Players
Audio visual devices
Radios/Stereos
Cell Phones, pagers
PDAs,Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)
Media (floppies, cd’s, zips, VHS tapes)

I have a bag of stuff I have been saving up for the next techno recycling gala event. This is such a sweet deal.

Goodbye old and improperly burned cds, printer ink cartridges, old laptop batteries, etc…goodbye.

-Cara

jeffe-me

That’s right a year ago, on January 10th, 2008, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” was formed. When I first started this blog it was to have a voice in the world that differs from mainstream television, radio, satellite, newspapers, etc.  I was inspired by the movie, “An Inconvenient Truth“, drawn into the meaning of an “inconvenient truth”, the fact that you might not want to hear what the problem is and what can be done to solve said problem, but here is the truth and now that you know, what are you going to do about it?

In the beginning, what I primarily wrote about was eco, environmental “inconvenient truths”, following in the footsteps of the film, but as time went by I began to find “inconvenient truths” in other areas as well, be it the issue of gay rights, human rights, animal rights, freedom of speech, freedom of art, whatever is going on in the world that mass media does not cover or covers up, these were the pieces I exceptionally enjoy writing about. Then there are the “recycle stuff” ones, just there for some information of what extra steps you can take to make a better world, the D.I.Y. projects using recycled materials, or just how to make something green and cool for your everyday life.  Throw in a few organic recipes, cool green events, green product reviews, games, petitions, stories of amazing people who inspire me, beautiful photos, and sometimes just a funny video to relax and you have, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth“.  :]

What I am getting at with all this is to say, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” has evolved from when I began to where it is at now. I went from doing blog entries everyday from January, 10th, 2008 to October 13th, 2008, right around when I got an official 9-5 job, to now where I may not blog everyday, but no more than a few days go by without me throwing one out there. I needed to find a balance in my life and for now this works for me. I’d rather have good ones than just have ones. :]

I really like writing this blog, even when I can’t think of what to write about, or when I’d rather be playing PlayStation with Ms. Marine or web 2.0 out on the million social networks. This blog makes me more accountable.  It is something I started and am still doing a year later (see Tony). Listen, for someone with absolutely no attention span to anything (besides computers and all things tech), I am pretty amazed that “TDAAIT” is still going. What is crazier is when I started this blog I was surprised if I got 10 hits a day, to now where I get on average over 300 unique hits a day from all over the world. Though businesses like MSNBC and other corporations that I do not have any respect for, ask me to place their advertisements on my site, I refuse. I was not working a real job when I started this blog and could have used easy money like that. Instead, I was insulted that they would even ask me, so much so I responded that they obviously had not looked at my blog, because if so they would never have asked me! In retrospect, I am sure they would have asked me anyway. In their minds people are just a herd of non-thinking cows who when they see a blinking ad, inevitably they must click on it. That goes against what I am trying to achieve here. I really hate ads everywhere. I am blessed in  many other ways through this blog, so it doesn’t need to monetarily support me as well.

What else have I gotten from writing, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth”? I have learned about a lot of bad stuff that goes on, and I have learned about good people, things and ideas, living and growing here on this Earth (I liked it when Alice Walker called humans “Earthlings” in this interview.). I maintain hope and an awesome faith that things will only get better if you do good.

Something I keep in the forefront of my mind is, what each of us does affects the other. It is not just the huge things necessarily, even our smallest thoughts affect the world. Also, we can as one person change things; who you touch in turns will touch others. You may not get the gratification of seeing the change you bring to the world directly, but if you do it, you may see the world itself change. I search for happiness and peace, by going inconveniently through its sorrows, untruths, truths, and ugliness. I also keep the faith. Faith is the most important thing, without it you are lost. I guess that is what, “The Day After An Inconvenient Truth” is to me, a way to not lose hope and to maintain my faith during the era that is the beginning of the end.

This year I have learned that humanity is not as bad and hopeless as it seems, so that’s cool.

-Cara

filterblondepf9

I received an e-mail yesterday from Becky Verhey on behalf of FilterForGood stating, “Since you wrote about the recyclability of Brita filters, I wanted to give you a heads up that Brita will announce today that it is  offering a recycling solution for its pitcher water filters. ”  She goes on to talk positively about Brita water pitchers, “…it would take 300 standard 16.9-ounce bottles of water to replace just one Brita pitcher filter“.  I wonder if they use any PVC in the making of their filters. I will send them an e-mail and ask.

Here is the information you need, beginning in January 2009, Brita pitcher filters can be dropped off at participating Whole Foods Markets or mailed to Preserve (another company I wrote about), who will recycle 100 percent of each Brita plastic pitcher filter casing collected for use in its line of recyclable household goods.

I have the Ultramax Dispenser and like it. I can also be riddled with less guilt now that I can recycle the filters. I was saving them already to send to FiltersforGood, who were collecting them from people to make a point. Now, hopefully I can just bring them down to the Whole Foods on 14th and have them recycled. I wonder what Whole Foods is going to do with them. I don’t trust that corporation. I worked for them for over five years when I was a kid in Chicago…long story

I am glad Brita figured something good and I think FilterForGood is fresh for fighting the good fight.

Nice work.

-Cara

Disclaimer: I just need to say I feel weird about Brita and FilterForGood partnering up. I can’t believe the people at Brita are caring for caring’s sake. I guess in the end if there is change for the better… I am not sure…

icecreamtruck

Amendment 2 is an initiative on Florida’s November ballot that if passed would limit the rights of both homosexual and heterosexual couples to form civil unions and domestic partnerships.

Gay marriage is already banned under Florida state law, but the initiative’s authors want to go a step further. The initiative states that “no other legal union that is treated as marriage or the substantial equivalent thereof shall be valid or recognized.”

Amendment 2’s supporters say that their intent is only to define marriage and not affect civil unions, but if so, then why include the “substantial equivalent” language in the initiative?

A similar initiative passed in Michigan in 2004, and as a result the state’s courts prohibited public employers from recognizing domestic partnerships for the purpose of awarding health benefits. The ruling affected teachers, nurses, professors, fire fighters, policy officers, and government employees.

Pledge to vote no on Amendment 2!

Why take away anyone’s right to health care among other things? My native state is a rough place that way for no other reason than that it is the way it has always been.

Sign here.

-Cara

I started this blog in January this year and am evolving as I go along. I purchased a Brita water pitcher (Brita Products Company is owned by the Clorox Company) about three months ago. Today we had to change the water filter, so I put the used one to the side to do some research on how to recycle it.

Here is what I found:

I went to this site, Take the Filter Back, and they state that Brita has the #1 market share of pour-through filter cartridges in the U.S. and Canada. It’s the #1 faucet-mount filter in Canada and the #2 faucet-mount filter in the U.S. (Per Clorox’s 2007 Annual Report.).  While the original European Brita GmbH company has created a take-back recycling program for its filter cartridges, Clorox has no such program in place for re-using or recycling Brita cartridges. There is currently no way to refill or recycle Brita filter cartridges in North America.

Brita filter cartridges consist of activated carbon housed inside a plastic body which cannot be opened by the consumer for refilling or recycling. The plastic body must be landfilled or incinerated each time the filter is changed. Plastic is a non-renewable resource made from petroleum. It is not biodegradable, lingering in the environment virtually forever. The more we reuse/recycle the plastic products we produce rather than manufacturing new ones, the less damage we inflict on the earth.

In its FilterForGood campaign, Clorox promotes the use of its Brita filtration system, in combination with re-usable water bottles, as a means to reduce disposable plastic bottle waste. Please join in asking Clorox to go further and take responsibility for the millions of plastic filter cartridges that are also landfilled or incinerated each year.

You can sign this petition urging Clorox to be responsible and recycle their filters. You can also write a letter to the Clorox company. In addition to the petition and letter-writing, they are going to make a strong visual statement. Inspired by Jim McKenna’s and John Lieberman’s successful campaign to urge AOL to quit sending out unsolicited CDs, they’re collecting used Brita filters, both pitcher and tap, to deliver to Clorox en masse at some point in the future. There is even a Yahoo! Group to meet others in your area and arrange filter collection/pick up/drop off. I am going to write something cute on mine and send them off. :]

The worst part is I just found out that Clorox bought Burt’s Bees… :[

-Cara

E.ON Energy Champions is a eco, flash game where you collect the recycling dropped from above by the selfish, lazy, littering workers and place them in the correct recycling bins before your carbon footprint becomes enormous.

It’s a fun one.

-Cara

I have some steel razors from box cutters and I’ve search online and found no real solution to how I can recycle them. I don’t want to put them in the garbage as I do not want any human or animal to suffer. The only answer I can come up with is you use an empty plastic or glass jar with a screw on lid, and fill it up with old blades until you need to dispose of them. You should then call your local sanitation department and see what they suggest. I would think you could recycle them, but it certainly would not be advisable to put them in a public metal recycling bin in case of injury.

Be a safe recycler.

-Cara

I am selling some stuff on Half.com. Recycling it back into the world…some books, CDs, video games and DVDs. Get ’em while they’re hot.

It’s green.

-Cara

I don’t know how these organizations get my name and address, but they do, and every few days I find what seems to be a good organization. This time it is Alley Cat Allies.  Don’t get crazy, this is not turning into a pet blog, but I covered a lot of dog stuff yesterday, so I thought this would be fair… Plus, you all may not know that October 16th is National Feral Cat Day, nor did I till today.  You’re welcome.

Their mission and vision are clear and concise.

Mission

To end the killing of cats and lead the movement for their humane care.

Vision

Society living non-violently with cats and all animals.

According to their site,

“Alley Cat Allies is the only national advocacy organization dedicated to the protection and humane treatment of cats. Alley Cat Allies has charted a course set on animal control and shelter industry reform and humane treatment through activities including:

  • Advocating for pounds and shelters to keep public records of animal intake and kill rates, for public and mandatory government oversight, and for increased pound and shelter accountability;
  • Mobilizing and educating the public and leading the national movement to end the killing of cats and to protect and improve their lives;
  • Supporting the efforts of, and acting as the national voice for, thousands of individuals and groups across the U.S. who provide humane care for stray and feral cats.

Alley Cat Allies was founded in 1990 by two women who recognized that stray and feral cats’ needs were not being met by the animal control pound and shelter system. They realized that when well-meaning citizens called pounds and shelters about feral cats, their only response was to kill them. “

They are doing a really good thing I think. I am not sure about the catching, neutering, clipping their ear and releasing, but I am also ignorant to what happens if there are thousands of cats reproducing all over the world with no monitoring. I would think the same thing that has occurred with the humans on this earth. It would be crazy if someone just decided to euthanize or terminate people due to an overpopulation problem. Very THX 1138. It really does seem to always come back to THX 1138. :]

One thing I might suggest to Alley Cat Allies, is with their mailings, instead of using shinny paper to print their brochures on, they use recycled, colored if they wanted, flat paper. That way it is easier to recycle, better for the planet, and for super nerds like me, I can use it to make my own paper (a little fact: you can’t use shiny, glossy paper in the paper making process). What used to make a company seem more legit, like nice glossy brochures, now shows an organization’s oversight on how they impact the planet as a whole, including cats. I think e-mails are also a good idea, but I understand first you need to get people’s e-mails through marketing practices like mailings. I might not have heard of them and written this entry without receiving said mailing. It is a catch-22 perhaps.

Nevertheless, they are doing something to end the destruction and inhumane treatment of cats, so they are heroes in my book. Here is where to go to become more involved with the organization’s plight.

:]

-Cara

This exciting, new entry is about recycling business cards. When I went to the Brooklyn Renegade Craft Fair at McCarren Park Pool not to long ago I picked up a million vendors’ business cards. I grabbed them so I could check out their web sites, see more of their wares, review their business structure and the design of the cards themselves. Marine and I have a few projects going on right now and are always looking at what other people are doing, or if someone else had the same idea, etc. We are almost done visiting every site, now the question is, what am I going to do with all these business cards from the Fair? Oh yeah and cards from old jobs as well. :)

Let’s find out together…

  • One of the first solutions I found was Steve Patterson. Steve is a man with an obsession and that obsession is business cards. You can learn about him and this obsession through his site. You can send your old cards to him here: Steve Patterson, PO BOX 27840, Knoxville, TN 37927-7840. Go Steve!
Build and They Will Come

Build It and They Will Come

  • Number 2 is build a level three Menger Sponge. Yes, that’s right a super fresh three-dimensional fractal curve…nice. Thank you Dr. Jeannine Mosely (an MIT Ph.D. in electrical engineering and computer science and a career in three-dimensional modeling) for this and other cool stuff you do.

  • Last but not least, a few small, fun things you can do to recycle your card are, bind together a few business cards and draw a short, animated flip film, take 52 of the business cards and create an awesome deck of cards, or if you have cards where only one side is printed on, take old magazines and make a collage on the printed side and put your info on the blank side.

See, recyling is fun.

-Cara

Look what I found…

You can recycle your Phones, iPods, PDA’s and Cameras to a variety of charities. I have not used them yet, but when I do I’ll post more about it.

Just a F.Y.I.

-Cara

I have two cats, Zohara Lurlean and Jefferson Brooklyn and I think it is time I start to green up their lives, so here are a few cute green objects of art.

Turtle for Cat has a soft, eco friendly shell created from environmentally friendly fabric made of 85% re-engineered recycled IntelliLoft™ fibers and filled with USDA certified Organic Catnip. Turtle for Cat measures 6 inches, has a sewn-in jingling bell, and is made in Montana, USA for a smaller carbon footprint.

I can only say one thing, these are my cats’ dream lounges by Marmalade. Stop it! Constructed of multiple layers of laminated cardboard and hardboard end-panels, and all natural materials, 35% minimum recycled content. The adhesives used in their products comply with ASTM-D 4236 non-toxic materials for consumer products and made in the USA. Renewable and recyclable materials are used and they are ascetically pleasing…nice.


Last but not least it is Eco-Me cat products. Make your own natural Flea and Bug spray, Litter Freshener and Cat treats (we give you 3 recipes), plus organic catnip and natural pillow. DIY cat stuff is fun. I said it.

Spoiled cats.

-Cara

Recycle Mania is a flash game and a pain to play, but I like the challenge. It is easy to get the  papers….everything else is a challenge. You need to learn the tricks and way to move.

Here’s some stuff from the site…

RECYCLE MANIA

by Roman Sandoval

Did you know you can make energy out of what you recycle? You can do your part by testing your reflexes and see how much you can recycle in a minute! Be prepared because this game moves fast!

MORE FACTS ABOUT RECYCLING

Every day American businesses generate enough paper to circle the earth 20 times.

Each ton of recycled paper can save 17 trees, 380 gallons of oil, three cubic yards of landfill space, 4,000 kilowatts of energy and 7,000 gallons of water–how many swimming pools is that?

Americans use more than 67 million tons of paper per year, or about 580 pounds per person. So, if we recycled all of the paper that we use, we could save over 1 billion trees every year. Which brings us to the next cool fact:

One tree can take out up to 60 pounds of pollutants from the air each year. So if we save all of those trees by recycling, we can help the environment and improve the quality of the air we breathe tremendously.

This simple thing–making sure that paper and cans and other recyclables go into the right bins–can have a huge impact and can begin to address the problem of global climate change.

Recyling is fun!

-Cara

The last few Sundays have been games, games, and games, so I decided it was quiz time.

It’s the Green Quiz straight out of Yale. This one is all about product consumption and disposal, and its impact on the world. The design is clean and done well.

It’s fun.

-Cara

History of the Eco-Shopping Game (according to their site):

The Eco-Shopping game is a game local to the North Central Texas region and was originally created by TXU Electric and Gas in 1997. The purpose of the game is to help educate the consumer on three aspects of product packaging:

  1. recyclability of the package,
  2. reducing the amount of packaging waste going into the landfill by buying products with less packaging, and
  3. giving preference to a packaging made with recycled content materials.

Click Here to Get to the Game Link

It reminds me of the Rocky and Bullwinkle Show, with the talking bull, Longhorn Larry. I found it on timetorecycle.com. There are three different games in one. My favorite is the one where you separate your recyclables from trash before the garbage truck comes. :) I can’t get enough of it.

Fun stuff.

-Cara

Today’s eco game is, The Adventures of KabMan. This game is an easy, but fun one. You need to get 40 recyclable items while avoiding the trash using your arrow keys. There’s even a prize at the end if you are successful!

k mAN

This game was created by Keep America Beautiful. Keep America Beautiful, Inc. is the nation’s largest volunteer-based community action and education organization. With a network of nearly 1,000 affiliate and participating organizations, KAB forms public-private partnerships and programs that engage individuals to take greater responsibility for improving their community’s environment.

Good times.

-Cara

…Queens, at the first installment of Stop ‘N Swap, which was put together by the Office of Recycling Outreach and Education and Build It Green! NYC. It was cool. People brought things they wanted to get rid of and you could take anything you wanted for free!

The coolest thing was it was mostly people from the neighborhood, at least when I was there. When one guy asked me how much the stuff was, I told him everything was free, he smiled, but he wasn’t quite sure I was telling the truth (I would have thought the same thing.). He proceeded to take kids’ roller blades, a DVD trivia game, a pinball toy, etc., looking around every once and awhile to see if I was setting him up. All the stuff he took was pretty new and I kept thinking how cool is that, this dad is going to be the world’s greatest dad for bringing all this loot home, not only that but when he woke up this morning he had no idea his day would turn out this way. Things like that make me smile and think the world isn’t such a pain all the time.

I myself brought a box of toys I had around the house, and some clothes to donate.


Some stuff I brought

People loving the stuff in the box I brought.

Less than 2 minutes later. :]

I also was able to bring my tech trash like empty printer cartridges and cds to be recycled as Build It Green! NYC offers that service year round.

Then I found a never used, super fresh full power 40 channel 2-way emergency information CB radio from the 70’s for FREE!!! :) I love this thing.

All and all it was productive, fun, and the people there working and hanging out were fresh! I’ll let people know when the next one is, if there is a next one!

Recycle! Reuse!

-Cara

Reason 87 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian: U.N. Environment Programme executive director Klaus Toepfer said in 2003: “The clock is standing at one minute to midnight for the great apes, animals that share more than 96 percent of their DNA with humans. If we lose any great ape species we will be destroying a bridge to our own origins, and with it part of our own humanity.” Humans stand behind all reasons for the die-off, including one of the most important: poaching for meat.

Two eco-green-super fresh shopping entries in one week, stop it. It’s your lucky week. Well not really. I didn’t think it would be responsible of me to promote more consumption, so instead I will put together some tips on how to be more environmentally conscious when you do shop. Even better. :)

According to Earth 911,

A family of four [I wonder if this is a family of four people or two people and two cats or one person and three dogs…] can save $2,000 a year in the supermarket by choosing large sizes instead of individual serving sizes. Small sizes use more packaging for each ounce of product than larger sizes. So, if you buy large sizes, you save money, reduce waste, and help the environment.

Here’s some Earth 911 tips:

  • Buy cereal in a large box instead of in individual serving sizes.
  • Buy large packages of sugar and flour.

I think the best thing would be to buy local products, like at your Farmer’s Market. That way you may avoid any packaging and you’ll be supporting your local region and a small business. That’s a lot of good.

Another thing you can do to help out is make sure whatever it is you are buying, that the packaging is recyclable through your local recycling program. If you go to this link on Earth 911 you can find that information.

Do not buy disposable products. We do not live in a world that can survive all this junk filling landfills and polluting the earth. In fact take all the disposable products you have and invent something new. There’s a cool project. Then if you want you can sell it on Etsy, make tons of money, quit your job and work for yourself, protect the world, and enjoy your life…easy.

Here are some ways to do your part,

  • Use rechargeable batteries in everything that needs batteries [May I suggest purchasing solar powered products, or water powered or kinetic instead…]
  • Do not use disposable cameras [Unless you are at someone’s wedding and they give you one. I mean at that point it’s too late.].
  • Use cloth napkins, sponges, and cloth towels or wipes to clean up. [I’m working on that one right now.]
  • Use washable plates, cups, and silverware for parties and picnics instead of disposable products [Come on really who is still buying paper or plastic plates???].
  • Use an electric razor or hand razor with replaceable blades instead of disposable razors. [Whoops.]
  • Use a washable commuter mug for your morning coffee and eliminate a Styrofoam or plastic cup every day [Funny, I was walking around just the other day with my Starbucks’ disposable coffee cup in my hand, thinking just that. I’m embarrassed….tell no one.].

I hope you have enjoyed this Friday’s shopping tips.

Enjoy your weekend.

-Cara

—————————————————
Reason 77 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
The population explosion should not be thought of exclusively in terms of people–not when one considers the ecological footprint represented by the world’s 3.2 billion cattle, sheep, goats, and domesticated bison across the globe. About 20 percent of the world’s pastures and rangelands, with 73 percent of rangelands in dry areas, have been degraded to some extent, mostly through overgrazing, compaction, and erosion caused by livestock.

I collected some stats on drink consumption from, The Good Stuff guide, produced in 2004 by the Worldwatch Institute that I thought might be of interest to people.

  • People in the U.S. consume more packaged drinks per capita than in any other country—about 350 aluminum cans per person per year, compared to 103 in Sweden, 88 in the United Kingdom, and 14 in France. [Go France!]
  • Making 1 million tons of aluminum cans from virgin materials requires 5 million tons of bauxite ore and the energy equivalent of 32 million barrels of crude oil. Recycling the cans, in comparison, saves all of the bauxite and more than 75 percent of the energy, and avoids about 75 percent of the pollutants.
  • Recycling just one aluminum can saves enough electricity to run a laptop computer for 4 hours.
  • Making 1 million tons of plastic bottles from virgin materials (petroleum and other fossil fuels) generates an estimated 732,000 tons of climate-altering greenhouse gases.

Again I say, that’s crazy!

Eco-Cycle Media did a piece called, Zero Waste Systems that gives you an idea of how messed up our production/consumption/recycling system is right now. Then they wrap it up with some simple solutions you can do to reverse this doomed process.

Zero Waste!

-Cara

—————————————————

Reason 75 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
Okinawa has the healthiest and longest-lived people in the world, boasting the highest percentage of people who live to be a hundred years old. The super-seniors who inhabit the island tend to retain their mental keenness, and few need to live in nursing homes. Not surprisingly, they eat very little food of animal origin, according to a 25-year study on the island. Genes could take some of the credit, although today’s old folks are projected to outlive their children who have adopted Western eating habits.

On Fridays I usually do a shopping or a recycled object making entry, then Saturdays a recipe entry and Sundays are a game or quiz entry, but two Fridays ago it was my 100th post, so I didn’t do the shopping/recycled entry until Monday. This Friday I was into tips, so I guess and forgot to do my regular entry. Today I will make up for missing said entry.

Here are three cool products I found. I mention places to buy the things I talk about, but I suggest trying to find products locally whenever possible.

On siliconsolar.com I found for $24.95 the Solar Battery Charger AA AAA C and D. It has the ability to charge AAA, AA, C and D batteries using solar cells. The company has one complaint in 36 months at the Better Business Bureau, which they resolved. I worked for the BBB here in New York City for about six years and that is a fine record for an online company…in my opinion. I think this charger is a great idea.

Alright, I am not sure how many people grill, but my dad does and smokes food. He makes me a mean, marinated, smoked portobello sandwich like you wouldn’t believe. Anyway, his grill light uses batteries I think, so I found the Maverick SOLAR LED Grill Light, Stainless Steel GL-04 for $48.99. Happy Father’s Day!!!

Last but not least, we were talking about brining your own water bottle to work instead of using disposable cups. I like the Switzerland company Sigg’s water bottles. They aren’t too big, and have a clean fresh look and feel to them. They are fashionable and sustainable.

I will update this entry with any reviews once I’ve tried any of these products. Please leave a comment if you’ve tried any of these contraptions, as I would love to know what you thought of them

Enjoy.

-Cara

—————————————————

Reason 73 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
Grass-fed beef is more eco-friendly than corn-fed, but supplies of it could never sustainably meet current consumer demand. Several guides are available to help seafood consumers “eat with a conscience.” But the species that are recommended would quickly run out if everyone ate them. Legally, “free-range” and “cage-free” designations are dubious to outright meaningless. At least one humane certification program was officially debunked. “Organic” has gone strangely industrial and is rightly tagged “ethically challenged.” Ultimately, to “eat green” and to “be kind,” one needs to go vegan. [Opinion of Pamela Rice only. I feel that to not validate free-range and grass-fed animals/farming is to tell meat eaters, that their choice does not matter between industrial farming and free-range, when of course it does make a difference. -Cara]

Sunday’s Fun game, Michael, Michael, Go Recycle!

Clean fun.

-Cara

—————————————————

Reason 65 from, 101 Reasons Why I Am Vegetarian:
The state of Oregon has taken warnings about bird flu to heart, devising elaborate plans to deal with a “most likely scenario” pandemic. The state, which represents less than 1.3 percent of the U.S. population, has anticipated how tanker trucks hauling 38,000 pounds of liquid carbon dioxide can be obtained to kill as many as a million infected chickens and where an estimated 2,000 tons of chicken carcasses can be buried. The state is also ready for as many as 800,000 human illnesses, 9,700 hospitalizations, and 2,300 deaths.

Today on April 10th, 2008, I welcome the Official Web Site of Me, CaraReynolds.com into the world. Firstly, I would like to thank Marine Boudeau for all the work and time she put into creating this fantastical place and making it more than I ever expected. It has been a long journey, but we did it!

What is CaraReynolds.com all about you may be wondering? It is about me wanting to have a space for my photography that goes beyond Flickr, a place that not only showcases my photos, but my life as well. I think this site turned out amazing. It is as I say ALL the time, AWESOME!

So, sit back and enjoy the show… and remember, just like me, CaraReynolds.com will continually evolve, so come back sometime and see me again.

– Cara

——————————————————-

Between 1980 and 2004, meat production in the developing world tripled, today amounting to well over half of the world’s output. Dense concentrations of corralled industrial livestock, which create vast quantities of manure, now skirt the edges of major cities in Asia and Latin America, causing severe environmental damages.

It is Friday again and time to look for three fantastical eco/green/recycled gems in this World Wide Web of ours.

The first thing I am going to show you are three different things, but due to their similarities I am going to list them as one gem out of three. They can be purchased on Recycled Planet Store, Inc..

fr

Recycled Maps Frogs made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Who are you person who created such an awesome thing??? Thank you! :D

cir

Recycled Maps Beads Bracelet made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Super cute, love the color of the blue beads in the pic.

sq

Recycled Maps Square Beads Necklace made from discarded and misprinted New York City Subway Maps.

My Opinion: Looks art deco, love the squares.

Bag

Number Two comes from a cool store , Bibelot. They carry a great line of ecobags made from recycled candy wrappers, recycled plastic bottles, recycled aluminum, recycled Coca Cola cans from Vietnam, and recycled newspapers.

My Opinion: I like anything that’s shiny and good for the world!

ellie

Last, but certainly not least is the elephant dung paper product site, Mr. Ellie Pooh. According to their site,

Mr. Ellie Pooh is a new eco-friendly, innovative company that sells 100% handmade journals, stationery, crafts, scrapbook/photo albums and various grades of paper made of 75% elephant dung (Ellie Pooh Paper) from Sri Lanka. Mostly, elephant orphanages supply the our Pooh, while Maximus makes a our exotic paper. Mr. Ellie Pooh distributes throughout the US and Canada.

All of our paper products are 100% recycled, 75% Pooh and 100% fun.

There are no toxic chemicals used in our paper-making process. Only basic bonding agents such as alum and rosin, along with water soluble salt dyes for coloring are used. No bleach. No Acids. As no alkaline or acid solutions are introduced during manufacturing, our handmade papers are of an ideal pH value for photograph preservation.

My Opinion: Why not! I love anything handmade and recycled. :)

OK, that’s all for today.

Charge It!

-Cara

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University research asserts that the feeding of approximately 10 million tons of poultry litter to U.S. cattle and other livestock every year is safe. But the mere presence of wasted feed in the mix, which otherwise includes excreta, carcass parts, bedding, and feathers, could include the stray remains of cattle. This would seem to violate the 1997 USDA rule that no cow is to eat the flesh of other cows, instituted to thwart the spread of mad cow disease. Also, poultry litter needs to be properly composted to neutralize microbial toxins–in practice not always done. Furthermore, livestock, so fed, need sufficient time to flush out veterinary medications that might have tainted the litter. Finally, feeding poultry litter to livestock provides one more vector for the spread of bird flu.

What is a better time then the dawn of Spring to buy a new scarf? I don’t think there is a better time really. It is sale time in scarfland. We are not at the point quite yet for the super scarf sales, but close enough to start thinking of the perfect one.

Here are some super, fresh choices I found. Three of the scarves were discovered on BranchHome.com, and the last two I found were on OriginalGood.com. I can not review, nor endorse their quality and/or usefulness as I have yet to try any of them, but I like the look, how they were made, and from what. :)

Pieces of Scarf

Navy Modular Scarf

design:
Galya Rosenfeld

manufacture:
Handmade by Galya Rosenfeld, San Francisco, CA

materials:
Reclaimed ultrasuede (scraps from the upholstery industry)

dimensions:
59″ long x 3.75″ wide

about:
Galya Rosenfeld’s work sits on the lines between fashion, design, craft, and art. Ruled by mathematic formulas as much as creativity, her designs emerge from the place where whimsy meets pragmatic thought. Her pieces are individually crafted, often without the use of thread, patterns or other tools found in traditional tailoring.

Galya’s pieces have been accepted into the permanent collection of The Costume Institute at The Metropolitan Museum of Art in New York.

price:
$224.00

Brick HouseOther One

“Flow” Scarf

design:

Hiroko Kurihara

manufacture:

Handmade by Hiroko Kurihara Designs, Oakland and Berkeley, CA

materials:

100% virgin wool from Italy. Material is EU ecologically certified.

dimensions:

62″ long x 8″ – 10″ wide

about:

With each scarf that Hiroko Kurihara Designs sells, they donate a scarf made of recycled polar fleece to a local organization that serves those who are homeless or in transition. This act of giving requires no additional purchase: it’s simply responsible, ethical consumerism.
Hiroko Kurihara Designs’ creations are high quality, uniquely designed and handcrafted in their Oakland and Berkeley California studios from the finest European virgin wool that is EU ecologically certified. They guarantee their crafts(wo)manship and believe in local non-sweatshop manufacturing.
Enjoy the warmth and the style of this scarf and know you are tangibly giving much needed comfort to someone else.

price:

$128.00

scarfred one

Warm and Fuzzy Scarf

design:
Tibetan refugee artisans

manufacture:
Original Good Store

materials:
Recycled Silk and Wool

dimensions:
55 x 6 (in.)

about:

Helping Tibetan refugee artisans by providing new markets for their crafts, these wonderfully happy hand-knotted wool creations are sure to keep you warm. Not only are they handcrafted in Nepal, but they are Fair Trade certified. They are also dry clean only. :)

price:
$29.95

Stay warm!

-Cara

    ——————————-

    In the mid-1970s, chicken processors argued that in order to keep up with skyrocketing demand they should be allowed to merely rinse off fecal matter from bird carcasses rather than cut away affected parts. The government gave in to the processors’ request, and the rule stands to this day. A number of studies have since proved that rinsing carcasses, even up to 40 times, is ineffective at dislodging the filth. It’s something to know since the violent motion of factory de-feathering rubber fingers not only works to squirt feces out from the carcasses, it can push filth deep into the crevices of the birds’ skin.

    tbs

     

    I wrote a blog entry on Recycline toothbrushes last month. I sent the entry to the them to share my super fresh writing [ :) ] with the company that inspired it all. Justin from Recycline got back to me. He was cool and offered to send me a toothbrush to try if I hadn’t already picked one up [He also said, “…I can attest that, with the 12 employees of Recycline all squarely behind the company mission, I feel lucky to be able to work here.”. See the original entry to understand what he is talking about.].

    I got the toothbrush yesterday, it is a cool black shade with soft bristles and I swear the handle feels like a yogurt container, but that may be more psychological than anything else. I tried the toothbrush this morning and love it so far, but like a lot of things in my life I get excited way too soon. I will use it some more then give my official review. That is not what this entry is about…it is about what am I, like millions of others, supposed to do with my regular, non-green toothbrush. I don’t want to just say too bad and throw it out. I got on the case and here’s what I found…

    According to www.freshfromthefarm.us, “some 50 million pounds of toothbrushes are tossed into America’s landfills each year. “. That isn’t even the number if everyone switched their toothbrush every three months like is recommended!!! What??? That is crazy.

    There are also other green alternatives besides Recycline like, the TerrAdent line of toothbrushes from Eco-Dent. They came up with this solution to be more green, replaceable heads.

    Here’s what they say about it, “The most commonly available toothbrushes require you to throw away the handle every time you need to replace your toothbrush. Hundreds of millions of these plastic handles pile up in land fills all across the country, taking up space and not breaking down. At the same time, enormous resources have to be used to create more and more plastic handles to replace those in the land fills! The cycle goes on without an end–until NOW. TerrAdenT Replaceable Head toothbrushes provide the best solution by allowing you to keep the handle and simply replace the heads, quickly and conveniently, when the time comes. Others who have tried to address this problem, while well-intentioned, have not worked through the solution quite as well. TerrAdenT is a far better solution than mailing a handle back to the manufacturer for recycling, when one looks at the ecological and monetary costs involved in transporting the handles back to the manufacturer, and then going through a recycling process which requires tremendous amounts of energy to re-use the plastic, and then having to transport the new “recycled plastic goods” back into the marketplace.

    Then of course there is the original old skool eco tooth brush, Radius. The ones who cared and did something about it first.

    Here’s what they sell,

    The Original

    The wide oval head, thumb grip and large comfortable handle available in right or left orientation makes this a classic toothbrush – now in its 22nd year of production.

    The Scuba

    The wide oval head flexes back and forth to remind us to reduce the pressure of brushing – large soft handle for sensitive brushing. Now in its 18th year of production.

    The Intelligent Toothbrush

    The Intelligent Toothbrush monitors your brushing time to 2 minutes. After 90 days of brushing it advises you to check the bristle wear and possibly change the head.

    The Source

    Replaceable head toothbrush with renewable resource handle – reduces environmental impact. Radial bristling – first toothbrush in the world to have it. Makes brushing easier and more effective. 3,080 Tynex nylon bristles – available in soft or medium. Reversible for right or left hand.

    Replaceable heads reduce environmental impact. First toothbrush in the world to have “Radial Bristling” making brushing easier and more effective. Soft or medium.

    They have also reduced their packaging recently which has lowered the shipping cost 30%.

    I could not find any way to recycle toothbrushes for people who can’t find these options in their local store and don’t have the money and/or time to order toothbrushes on-line. What I did find was toothbrush crafts and other useful ways a toothbrush can be used after they are no longer cleaning your pearly whites!!!

    Carol Duvall from HGTV came up with a cool solution make bracelets out of them. It is pretty basic system, but a little imagination and who knows what you can come up with. Maybe paint them or while they are malleable carve cool designs in them, or use stickers, etc.

    Below are some ideas for toothbrushes after their original use is over. If you have anymore let me know and I’ll add them to the list.

    1. Use for polishing your shoes. This is especially useful for where the shoe meets the sole.
    2. Use for cleaning threaded mechanical parts.
    3. Use for cleaning greasy auto parts.
    4. The artistic type can use one as a coarse paint brush.
    5. Use for cleaning combs.
    6. Melt the handle until soft enough to bend at a 90 degree angle (with bristles pointing out), and use it to clean coffee makers, etc.
    7. Use old ones to clean the grooves between the tiles in your bathroom or floors.
    8. Using a permanent marker, you can make vegetable/flower ids for the garden.
    9. Use them to hold up plants in the house.
    10. Children can use them for splatter painting, or puppets.

    That’s it for now. If anyone hears of a way to recycle everyday toothbrushes, let us know.

    Keep it real.

    -Cara
    ——————————-

    Governments try to regulate fishing gear, catch size, species, and fishing season, but usually without success. Perhaps the biggest single threat to global fish stocks is illegal, unreported, or unregulated (IUU) fishing, which, it is estimated, amounts to about a quarter of the world’s catch. In some locations, IUU fishing has been documented to amount to four times the legal catch. Efforts to combat piracy are fraught with obstacles, not the least being feverish world demand for fish. For pirates, the return on investment is well worth the risks of side-stepping fishing conventions, skirting surveillance, off-loading fish to other boats that “launder” the catch, and docking at complicit ports. Because when pirates are actually caught, the penalties tend to be inordinately light.

    ECO-LogicalART
    New Art, With History

    chillin

    Today’s blog is about eco-art. Taking trash and flipping it into art, making it functional and of use again.

    According to Eco-LogicalART’s site…

    Eco-LogicalART is a dynamic new non-profit sister company to Peter Schulberg’s personal recovered element studio, the DejaDesign Gallery. Both entities share his conviction that beautiful objects surround us and only need to be re-envisioned.

    With Eco-LogicalART Schulberg takes his theory of creative recovery to ground braking—or rather ground liberating new heights. The gallery’s fine art line features original art painted on recycled billboard vinyl. Tossed into landfills by the ton weekly, this heavy, ink impregnated material is an environmental nightmare. But ECO-LA takes the indestructible nature of the advertising vinyl and turns it into an asset. In fact the art can even hang on an exterior wall. To date his Off The Wall 1 and 2 indoor/outdoor art events have drawn hundreds of spectators and produced over $25,000 in sales of original art on recycled vinyl. OFF THE WALL 3, which will premiere on Earth Day Eve, 07 (April 21), promises to be bigger than ever because in addition to the art in and on his gallery exterior original art on 5 actual recycled billboards will be up for display around Los Angeles. At 14 by 48 feet it is estimated that over 250,000 people a day will see the free art month long drive-by “exhibit.” To put that in perspective the famed Getty Museum averages about 4000 visitors daily.

    By definition Eco-LogicalART works are cutting edge and provocative. With original billboard elements peeking through, then artist re-envisioned, the pieces recalibrate the old question with a new eco-answer– offering neither art nor commerce, but art from commerce. Dynamic and aesthetically pleasing as they are, the works offer something more– the feel good satisfaction of knowing that a landfill, somewhere, is a little less full because of the art hanging on your wall.To that an old Shaker saying is recalled that is one of Schulberg’s touchstones:

    “We do not inherit the earth from our parents; we are borrowing it from our children.”

    I like the idea and images.

    Good stuff.

    -Cara

    ——————————-

    The Humane Slaughter Act requires that mammals be rendered insensible to pain before being slaughtered. A Washington Post series in 2002, however, exposed a packing industry hard pressed to follow this law. Animals were found regularly butchered alive on speeded-up conveyor lines. A resolution that the Humane law be followed to the letter did become part of the U.S. Farm Bill. But long after the politicians enjoyed their photo-ops, the live butchering surely continues. Appropriated Farm Bill funds ended up being diverted to food-safety inspectors already employed. In the end, it almost doesn’t matter. The Humane law does not even apply to 99 percent of animals slaughtered, because poultry and fish are not covered by it.

    I’ve decided Fridays will now be the official, Eco Gadgets and Recycled Gems day, like Sundays are Game Day here at The Day After An Inconvenient Truth. This entry I will show you some cool gadgets and green things.

    I’m not sure if you can actually buy the Barcode Trashcan, but I love the look of this sleek, sharp, futuristic recycle can. There’s one bin for each type of recyclable material. Just swipe the item in question over the top and the bin that opens is your winner. Nice… :)

    Can It

    With this next recycle gem, I will just say now, I am going to steal this idea. I live in NYC and see computer monitors on the curb all the time. What a great idea. My cats will love this.

    Computer Monitor

    These speakers are made out of recycled stuff and come in multitudes of colors and a few styles. You can fold them flat and throw them in your bag. These are cute for going to the park or beach with you peeps. Plug them into any mp3 player, all this for only $14.95.

    Speakers

    Recycled and fun.

    -Cara

    I have now found a way to recycle all my technotrash in one day for free in NYC…Well free, if I already happen to have a car, if not Zipcar for a few hours is not too much money to help save the world. These guys seem super fresh. Here is a bit of information on them.

    Build It Green! NYC and Lower East Side Ecology Center have teamed up to provide a permanent electronics recycling drop-off at Build It Green! NYC. Electronics can be dropped off any time during Build It Green! NYC’s business hours.”

    What can you bring there?

    Working and non-working:
    Computers (laptop & desktop),
    Servers, mainframes
    Monitors
    Printers, scanners, fax-machines, copiers
    Network devices (routers, hubs, modems, etc.)
    Peripherals (keyboards, mice, cables, etc.)
    Components (hard drives, CD Roms, circuit boards, power supplies, etc,)
    TVs,VCR & DVD Players
    Audio visual devices
    Radios/Stereos
    Cell Phones, pagers
    PDAs,Telecommunication (phones, answering machines, etc.)
    Media (floppies, cd’s, zips, VHS tapes)

    Next time I have a car I am there.

    I love New York!

    -Cara

    So you want to get rid of the couch, some appliance you are replacing, all your furniture :), but you think the stuff is still in good enough shape not to trash out on the curb, or you just love recycling!!! What can you do???

    I found a few things. One, this website appliance x change, is a free appliance classified ads site. The website has used appliance ads from appliance dealers and individuals.

    Her are some of the faqs…

    Registration

    Q: How much does it cost to register?
    A: Nothing. Registration is FREE.

    Q: Do I have to register to use the site?
    A: No. You can browse and search ads without registering. You should still register, to save time, as the site will remember various preferences for you. If you want to create ads, you will need to register. Registration and placing ads are FREE.

    Pricing and Payment

    Q: How can it be free–what’s the catch?
    A: Our goal is to make ApplianceXchange.com the leading side for appliance classifieds. To do that, we are making all ads free as we bring together appliance dealers and individual buyers and sellers.

    Q: How Much Do Ads Cost?
    A: All ads are FREE–any category–any amount!

    Q: How Long Does an Ad Run?
    A: Each ad runs for 360 days or until marked as sold by the seller.

    Next, if you live in the NYC area we have, Furnish A Future: Enhancing the Lives of Newly Housed Families and Individuals

    Furnish a Future is New York City’s only free furniture bank. Since 1992, Furnish a Future has helped more than 22,000 formerly homeless families turn bare rooms into comfortable, functional homes.

    The furniture you donate today will help transform an empty apartment into a warm, welcoming home for a formerly homeless family or individual.

    They are located in my old neighborhood of Bushwick, actually right down the street on Jefferson. You can bring your stuff there to donate or for a small donation fee, they will come pick up some of your stuff, but check this link first to see what they will pick up and they recommend you call first as well. I wish I would have known when I lived there, but I left my furniture and appliances in a huge commercial loft and know that Curly, my super super took some of the stuff down to the front yard [a.k.a.- The Garage] and added to his already eclectic collection of furnishings, as did others, I’m sure.

    I’m out.

    -Cara

    I was working on another idea for today’s blog entry when I found this site, Earth 911. It is a simple and clean site where you list what you are trying to recycle and your zip code and poof, it gives you the nearest location to recycle whatever it is you are looking for, if it exists.

    I don’t have to save 20 lbs of ink cartridges to mail first, which the clutter would make me crazy. I think GreenDisk.com is a better site for companies that have a large amount of technotrash or people that live out where there are not local recycling spots. In that sense they rock!

    For a girl living in the Big City, all I have to do to recycle my inkjet cartridges is take them to a Staples or Best Buy. That is green and easy. That’s living.

    Perfect.

    -Cara

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