Wednesday, July 29, 2009

Firewood for the third world countries

Roots of common gourds could serve as cooking fuel in underdeveloped countries reducing the tree and shrub loss caused by gathering firewood.
Women in the third World spend one day per week scavenging scarce fuel adding to deforestation.
The taproots of gourds and squashes after being dried in the sun, burn more efficiently than wood. Women in Mexico, Senegal, and Niger tried the fuel and declared it highly flammable.
The plants grow in nutrient-poor soils but are inedible for the most part.
Tree Light

Tree Planting and Carbon dioxide.

The millions of trees planted as part of Earth Day activies will not seriously affect the global pollution for many years to come.
But it's worth the wait.
Each year a mature tree can consume as much as 50 pounds of carbon dioxide, one of the major contributors to the greenhouse effect.
Large sycamores and white mulberries are believed to reduce air pollution by nearly a third!
Prankster Tree Face by Forest Faces

Thursday, June 18, 2009

Recycling And Reusing Tissue Paper

Author: Kevin Thomas

Our top tips on packaging series continues with helpful hints on reusing your tissue and paper packaging.

3 reasons to reuse your tissue paper and paper packaging

1) As pressure on the environment and the need for the nation to economise grows, it’s now critical to conserve and reuse packaging.

2) Reusing packaging is the best form of recycling, because it doesn’t require further use of energy, either in converting or transporting the packaging prior to use. It simply extends the life of your paper packaging.

3) Thinking ahead to how your customer receives their parcel or gift, reducing unnecessary packaging and making it easy for the customer to reuse their tissue paper, or other paper packaging, could have a positive impact on your environmental credentials

“As a specialist packaging supplies company we believe we have a duty to encourage Customers to give greater thought to the packaging they buy and make better use of the packaging materials they retain.”

How to reuse your tissue and other paper gift packaging

  • Initially, avoid contact with self adhesive tape where possible, as this will tear the tissue paper
  • Ideally wrap or fold tissue paper around the item and place within a cardboard box without sticking the tissue paper together. Elastic bands, string or ribbon can be used instead of adhesive packaging tape to encourage reuse of paper packaging
  • When unpacking items wrapped in tissue paper, try to avoid ripping the paper and flatten sheets where possible
  • Like wrapping paper and other forms of gift packaging, tissue paper can be reused if it is in good condition
  • If the tissue paper has become creased or ripped, you could scrunch it up loosely to fill voids and provide cushioning protection within boxes
  • Alternatively, tissue paper and other gift wrap can be shredded to make attractive gift packaging and paper loose fill

Once your tissue paper or other paper gift packaging is no longer usable, it can be recycled along with other waste paper.

Alternatively, you may wish to pass on used, clean paper packaging to schools for art projects. Many schools and nurseries might buy cheap tissue paper online or direct from UK packaging suppliers, and if you can pass your packaging on it might save your local school money and also help to conserve energy and natural resources.

For more information about buying tissue paper, gift wrap and other paper packaging, why not visit the Davpack online packaging superstore, or call 01332 821 200 and speak to one of our packaging experts…....we can even give you tips on reusing or saving on packaging materials.

About the Author:

Kevin Thomas works for Davpack, a uk packaging supplier. Their friendly staff are waiting to help you choose the right packaging for your business.
Garbage and Recycling

Text and content © Copyright of Davenport Paper Co. Ltd 2009

Article Source: - Recycling And Reusing Tissue Paper

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Recycling Your Computer After Its Life is Over

Author: A Nutt

Your computer has died, and there is no hope for its resurrection. You have already replaced it, but now what do you do? What options are there for disposing of your old computer in a safe and environmentally friendly way? The answer is computer recycling.

Why Recycling Computers Is Important

Computers and other consumer electronics items make up around two percent of all of the materials in today's landfills. We already know that recycling in general is important, as the landfills are not getting any smaller, but recycling computers and monitors is especially important. These items contain lead and toxic metals that can cause serious damage to the environment, particularly if they end up in the water supply.

Additionally, your computer contains personal information that you may not know how to completely remove. You do not want a computer guru finding it in the dumpster and taking your personal information off of it. This can lead to identity theft and a lifetime of problems.

Advantages of Recycling Your Computer

Recycling your computer responsibly carries many benefits. First, by working with a responsible recycler, you are ensured that your personal information is completely removed from the machine. This will protect you from dumpster divers who are just waiting to find a hard drive to tap into.

Another benefit of recycling your computer is the fact that you will be doing your part to protect the environment. You will be keeping the toxins that are in your computer out of the landfills and away from the water supply. Additionally, the precious metals and other materials used in these electronics must be mined, which takes a tremendous toll on the environment. By recycling your computer, you ensure that these precious materials are reused, reducing the amount that must be removed from the earth through costly mining efforts.

In many cases a recycled computer can actually be put to use again. Even if a major part of your computer is broken, there are other components that can be used to rebuild other computers. This can provide an affordable computer for an individual or organization that otherwise would not be able to access one. Often these computers are donated to charitable organizations, so in this way you could be helping the community simply by recycling your broken computer. When you choose a recycling center, choose one that works closely with a charitable organization.

How Computer Recycling Works

The first step in a responsible computer recycling program is wiping all information off of the computer's hard drive. This ensures that your finances and personal information are protected. Then, the recycling program should look at the machine to see if there are any usable components. These are harvested to be used to build new machines. Any non-usable parts are broken down into their basic components, such as metal or plastic, and further processed.

The recycling center will then take these basic components and organize them according to the type they are. These parts will then be sent to a smelting facility to be turned into tiny pieces and melted to be made into other things. For instance, plastic can be melted and used again in another computer or for a completely different plastic item. As part of this process, the precious metals that are in circuit boards are extracted for reuse. This keeps them out of the environment.

Today, only 18 percent of all computers and other consumer electronics that have reached the end of their lives are recycled. This means that 1.84 million tons of this type of waste ends up in the landfills. By recycling your old computer, you can ensure that you do not add to this sad statistic.

About the Author:
Renting computers is the best option in any business, event, and trade show needs. Offering computer, laptop rental and projector rental.

Article Source:

Garbage and Recycling
What Happens At A Recycling Center?

Recycling Defined

Author: Joey Pebble

The term recycling refers to the processing of used manufactured products in such a way that the materials are turned into new products, ready to be re-used. Most materials can be recycled, although harder substances may cost more to process, making their re-use inefficient. Paper, plastic, glass, tin, and many textiles are all relatively easy to process for recycling. Despite the similarity in purpose and process, when organic materials such as foods and plants are re-used the process is known as composting rather than recycling.

Recycling is done for a number of reasons, the most obvious of which is to reduce the amount of natural resources which are consumed for new products. It is also done to save energy, prevent water and air pollution, and to prevent the build up of garbage and the proliferation of landfills.

If recycling were a perfectly efficient process you would be able to take old wasted products, and convert them into the same amount of the same product, only unused. However, there is an energy expenditure that is used when processing recycled materials, which can drive up the cost of manufacturing certain goods. That is why high end materials such as paper and pencils are often turned into lower grade recycled materials such as cardboard.

Salvage is another form of recycling, in which valuable substances or components of a used product are reclaimed without actually reusing the rest of the product. This is done with the lead found in batteries, as well as the gold parts that are found in computer chips.

While recycling is considered to be a method for reducing waste and preserving the health of the natural world, opponents claim that it is actually a wasteful process that uses up more resources than it produces. These criticisms are often specifically targeted at state mandated recycling initiative. However, even if the cost of production is higher it may be justified due to the cost of maintaining the product in a landfill after it is used.

About the Author:

This article was written by Joey Pebble, one of the artists who produces natural stone home d├ęcor products for – These products are all produced from real pieces of the natural earth, quarried, cut and refined into a series of elegant and sophisticated home accessories.

Article Source:

Wednesday, February 18, 2009

83% Believe Retailers Should Stop Giving Away Free Plastic Bags

Author: Chris Amos

4 out of 5 Britons believe supermarkets should stop giving away free plastic bags according to a new poll.

Following last week’s move by The Welsh Assembly Government aiming to introduce a ban on free plastic bags, over 70% of the general public want the Government to impose a charge on plastic bags given by retailers to encourage shoppers to switch to reusable ones instead.

A hefty 69% believe the current promise by retailers to reduce the number of bags given away by 50% by the end of spring 2010 is not enough.

82% of people believe a 10p-15p charge on plastic bags would encourage consumers to change to reusable bags while 92% are concerned with the impact the current plastic bags available from retailers have on our environment.

The Welsh Assembly Environment Minister Jane Davidson has asked officials to start work on the necessary legislation to introduce a ban on giving away free plastic bans.

“When we look at other countries in the world we understand why countries from Italy to Australia are now imposing charges and even banning plastic bags,” she said. “That experience around the world has told us that the most effective way to meet our aspirations on plastic bags is with regulations.”

Chris Amos from eco-bags company, Reusabags said:

“Support for a ban on giving away plastic bags is now greater than ever. Many governments around the world including China and France are introducing policy to cut giving away free plastic bags. 12-months ago, Gordon Brown demanded a reduction of plastic bags, so for our future and the sake of our planet, the use of reusable bags should be embraced and encouraged now.”

About the Author:

London based eco-friendly writer

Article Source:

Lone Wolf Tapestry Tote Bag

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

Go Green With Your Next Fundraising Activity


School fundraising can be tricky. You have to serve the majority and find products that a large group of people are going to want to purchase because they will be purchasing them at a much higher price than their local retail store. Most fundraising activities don’t take into account health concerns or dieting and most are not environmentally friendly. However, there are many fundraising parents who are frustrated with the fact that fundraisers pinch their pockets, theirs stomachs and the environment. Why can’t we purchase items that are healthy, unique and that will help us go green?
Go green fundraising items are a great way to sell something your friends and neighbors may actually be able to use. Some of the exciting items include reusable shopping bags – you could put your school logo right on the bag and then you’d be supporting and advertising for the child you support. Other items may include pens or paper made with recycled paper. These items abound even in retail stores and are becoming vastly popular. Another great idea might be bread or other health foods like trail mix, power bars or similar items. Bread is something most people are consuming on a regular basis so it would be easy to support those types of fundraising activities.

Along with recycled items, reusable items and health foods, school fundraisers could incorporate things like live plants or trees. Several programs online offer live tree fundraising and live bulb fundraising. Not only do these types of items support a school group, they are a great way to beautify the world. You could do the fundraiser in several different ways, depending on the type of group participating in the fundraising activity and depending on the people that are going to be buying the product. First, you could have people purchase the item and then you deliver it to them and they are free to plant the tree or flower bulb in their own yard. However, you could also design a program so that you have a person buy a flower bulb or tree that is planted at the school, church or community place. This can then be a reminder of how that individual helped out the school. You could even have a day where everyone who purchased a flower or tree comes down and helps with the planting and beautification. This might be a fantastic way of getting more community involvement and it also gives people some pride and ownership as well.

When planning your next fundraising activity consider looking online and choosing a go green fundraiser. As more people become sensitive to the environment and their health, it is going to be imperative that school fundraisers accommodate people’s changing habits and needs. In order to continue to reach the biggest majority of people it will be essential to adapt some of the products. We can all count on cookie dough and wrapping paper fundraisers. However, make your mark by trying something a little different. Go green fundraising can make an impact on people’s lives and in people’s communities. Through reusable products, recycled items, health food products and live plants or trees, you can make a big difference in fundraising. Next time you need to go knock on a door or bring a fundraising sheet to work you’ll be bringing in items that might just catch people’s attention.

About the Author: Rebecca Beckett is a freelance writer for Innuity. If you would like more information about School fundraising or fundraising activities go to ProFund Golf

Saturday, February 14, 2009

Nappies and the Environment

Author: Jenny Andrew

The plastic components of each disposable nappy take several hundred years to biodegrade. When you think that an average 8 million nappies are thrown away every day in the UK alone! That works out at nearly 3 billion nappies each year. Around 7.5 million of the daily 8 million nappies will go to landfill but the rest, unfortunately, could end up littering the streets or thrown into the sea which are all too common scenes. A disposable nappy has over twice the environmental impact of a reusable nappy and with the use of an A rated washing machine and environmentally friendly washing detergents; this can be improved even greater.

There are many other reasons why reusable nappies are a good idea. Firstly, and what is so often on the minds of parents is cost. Reusable, cotton nappies can save in the region of £600 over using disposable nappies. Money can be saved further should another child come along as the same cloth nappies can be used.

Cotton nappies are far better for a baby’s sensitive and delicate skin. Disposable nappies are made of superabsorbent chemicals, plastics, paper pulp and adhesives whilst real nappies are made mainly from natural fabrics/fibres. This aids in keeping nappy rash to a minimum. Cotton nappies are soft, breathable and lightweight.

Cotton nappies have advanced greatly in recent years to meet the needs of modern day parents. Reusable nappies of today have no complicated folds and come complete with Velcro or popper fastening. The cotton used has been designed for ease when washing and no soaking is required.

The development of cotton nappies has allowed for a range of different nappies to come onto the market. Here are the four main types:

Flat or prefold nappy - A rectangular shape made from cotton which needs a quick fold and is then placed inside a separate waterproof wrap - the wrap does not need to be changed at every nappy change time. Attributes are: slim fitting, quick drying and good value.

Shaped nappy – These do not require any folding. Simply close and place it inside the waterproof wrap. The wrap does not need to be changed every time you change the nappy, unless it is soiled. These are very easy to use with lots of fabrics to choose from. Some shaped nappies can be used from birth to potty training, making them very economical.

Pocket nappy - The waterproof outercover has a fleece layer on the inside with a gap left at the top between the fleece and the waterproof. Into this gap you place the absorbent pad, also known as an insert. As the pad is inside the wrap you need to change the waterproof at every nappy change time. A very simple to use nappy and the fleece layer helps keep your baby's skin drier.

One size nappy - Many nappies are available in one size which will fit from birth to potty training (8-35lbs). A good option if you have more than one child in nappies. Both children can use the same nappy. One size nappies are very economical and simple.

About the Author:

Cotton Baby, stockists of easy to use reusable">">reusable nappies. These cotton">">cotton nappies require no soaking, no pins, no fiddly folds, just great absorbency and a neatly fitted cloth">">cloth nappies.

Article Source:

Friday, February 6, 2009

Save the Environment: Refill Printer Cartridges

Author: gardnerwilkinson

One way to reduce your carbon footprint is to refill printer cartridges. Refurbishing printer cartridges is becoming increasingly popular because of the low costs of refilling as well as the positive impact on the overall environment.

The Option to Refill Printer Cartridges

Printers have cartridges that store the ink and dispense it while something is being printed. Usually printers have two printer cartridges - one for printing in black and white and the other for printing in color. Most printer manufacturers supply cartridges as well. These cartridges have one or more compartments for storing ink, an electric contact and a chip for detecting the level of ink left in the cartridge. The cartridge of any printer, be it inkjet or laser, can be removed.

Once the ink in the cartridge is over, one has the choice of replacing the cartridge. This is the more expensive option. One could instead refill printer cartridges and get the same quality of output, while saving a significant amount of money. While the cost of buying a new printer cartridge is quite high, an existing cartridge can be refilled at nearly half that cost. This means huge savings for the printer user. Not only this, every cartridge can be refilled four to five times, depending on the level of use, the quality of the printer and the condition of the cartridge.

Turn Environment Friendly: Refill Printer Cartridges

To refill printer cartridges is considered as an environment friendly option, since refurbishing reduces the number of cartridges being disposed and supports recycling. Each printer cartridge takes more than 3 liters of oil to be manufactured, apart from aluminum and steel. You can refill printer cartridges and save these nonrenewable resources. Moreover, most of the printer cartridges that are disposed add to landfill sites and take more than 450 years to decompose, since the plastic and other materials used are not biodegradable.

How to Refill Printer Cartridges

One should be careful in selecting the company to refill printer cartridges. While there are many online vendors advertising for this, one must trust only a reputed company. Moreover, one can consider bulk order discounts, money back guarantees and doorstep delivery while making the decision.

One company that has made a mark in providing this service isCartridge World. Founded more than a decade back, this company is today a leading provider of cartridge refilling services. Cartridge World offers several facilitates that one can benefit from.

About the Author:

Refill Printer Ink Cartridges - At Cartridge World stores our technicians refill cartridges for your inkjet & laser printers and offer you up to 50% savings as compared to buying a new one. Visit us now for more information.

Article Source:

Tuesday, February 3, 2009

7 Reasons Why You Should Create Your Own Power at Home

The basic and most important reason to create your own power from renewable energy sources is that it saves you greatly on Electricity Bill. You save hundreds of dollars if you do not have to pay your electricity bill. This should help you to kick start making your own electricity using renewable energy resources from your backyard. The whole process is not as complex or complicated as you may think; any one can get it done if one puts their mind to it. There are home energy kits available to give you step by step instructions to guide you through, you find them explaining things in very simple words, giving you the feeling of holding your hands and guiding you along.
Renewable Energy: Sources for Fuels & Electricity

The second reason is the most important of all because creating power on your own with renewable energy is great for the environment. With power generated from renewable energy there is no air pollution, noise pollution and any emission hazards. As it is, our environment is getting polluted day by day due to the present energy resources and its wastes. Creating our own energy may let us do our bit to zero in on environmental pollution and health hazards. The renewable energy usage also helps to prevent global warming and so protect our environment from that too.

The third reason why we should create our own energy is for the fun of it. When we make our own energy it can be interesting as well as fun activity, which will leave us feeling creative as well as making a big achievement. If you feel you are not technically sound enough with such activities then you may get a home energy kit and get your electrician to set it up accordingly for you.

The fourth and interesting reasoning would be the money you save on your electric Bill may be used elsewhere. There might have been things you have wanted and postponed buying, just because you have to pay your electric bill. So when you make your own electricity whatever you save on the electric bill can be used to spend on more important things and necessities.

The fifth reason would be of getting to know the great feeling of being able to create your own energy which you might have never felt possible. Just try making your own electricity and find out for yourself how that makes you feel when you get the lights burning. It would always be a pleasure for you to know that you made it possible to electrify your home on your own. It is unlike any other feeling when you do it yourself.

The sixth reason is that, it is actually a simple job. Once you get to know how to create your own energy it will feel like child's play to you. There are fully illustrated instruction manuals available with the home energy kits that make the whole process an easy job.

Last but not the least, it is not really expensive. You may make your own electricity for your needs from your backyard for an investment of less than $200. Wow! That sounds great doesn't it?

Friday, January 30, 2009

Bottled Water is bad for the Planet! What’s the Alternative?

The Bottled Water industry is now a 15.5 Billion dollars business in the US alone. But have you ever thought about what drinking all that bottled water does to the planet? Here’s a little food for thought.

Americans toss 38 billion water bottles into landfills every year! That’s 2.7 million tons of plastic, taking about 1000 years to degrade. Bottles that are incinerated produce toxic byproducts such as chlorine gas entering the air, and ash containing heavy metals enters the soil.

Manufacturing the water bottles necessary to meet Americans' demand for bottled water requires more than 1.5 million barrels of oil annually. Just think: that is enough energy to fuel about 100,000 cars for a year, running up demand for oil. In addition, more clean water is wasted in the production of the bottle than the bottle holds while a sixth of the world has no access to potable water.

Each week here in the US we are moving 1 billion bottles of water around in ships, trains, and trucks. That is a weekly convoy equivalent to 37,800 18-wheelers burning up fossil fuels just to deliver water! (Water weighs 8 1/3 pounds a gallon. It's so heavy you can't fill an 18-wheeler with it--you have to leave empty space.)

The Alternative? So simple!
• For your Bottled water needs for water coolers or crocks, filter your tap water where you use it with a high quality water filter such as PureCool. Not only is this choice a blessing for the planet – it will save you lots of cash to boot!
• Install a quality water filter under your sink. This provides the safest water and costs far less than bottled water or pitcher/canister type filters. The best one I’ve found is Legacy 105 which lasts a full year without giving it another thought. It has the highest flow rate on the market and only costs a couple of pennies per gallon.
• The best choice of all is a whole house filter. With this choice, not only do you “Break the Bottled Water Habit,” but you eliminate chemical absorption through your skin - making you feel and look better! An added bonus from this choice is that your water-using appliances will last up to 50% longer, meaning your filter pays for itself is savings. Be careful to choose a filter such as the SMF Whole House water filter that takes care of chloramines and health related contaminants such as cysts and VOCs.
• Get yourself a good reusable stainless steel personal water bottle (or 2 or 3) and refill the same bottles every day. There are extremely light and durable ones available now that can last you a decade! New Wave has the best value I’ve found. It‘s a great investment, again, saving you thousands of dollars over the life of the bottle.

None of these alternatives requires you to give up a thing – in fact they are money savers. Yet each one will have an enormous impact on the planet if each of us does our part!

About The Author-- Donna Hoffman is the owner of, provider of the highest quality, earth-friendly water purification products for home, office, pool and spa. Donna is dedicated to supplying healthy water for drinking, bathing, and recreation by sharing products that are “Good to You and Mother Earth Too.”

Article Source: Articles island - Free article submission and free reprint articles

Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Recycle Tips | How Recycling Can Fit Into Your Lifestyle Easily?

There are many recycle tips out there on the Internet. You can probably hear it and see it everywhere you go today. Many people believe that recycling is hard to do. We tend to do what is easy and taking a few extra steps to recycle is not easy. So instead of recycling we tend to go the easy route and just throw everything away. But that should not be the case. There are a lot of innovative ways to recycle today. There are new products that seem to be coming out daily that are trying to make it easier to recycle.

The recycle tips out there can be categorized from easy to hard in terms of how easy it is to fit it into your lifestyle. Since most people believe it is hard to recycle, they tend to ignore the recycle tips they are given. One of the easiest ways to recycle would be to use a reusable water bottle. Millions of water bottles are in landfills today because people think it is easier and more convenient to use the disposable bottles. Another easy to do recycle tip would be to buy recycled products. The idea of recycling is to be able to reuse the material and eliminate waste and the need to use more virgin materials.

A few recycle tips that take just a little space in your house would be to reuse old birthday cards and Christmas cards by making them into homemade postcards. It will save you money and allow you to keep in touch with friends and family. Another recycle tip that uses everyday objects is to reuse your fabric softener sheets.

You can reuse them by putting them in your clothes drawers, to clean the lint of the dryer screen, wipe pet hair off of the furniture or eliminate static cling in skirts by rubbing it on your pantyhose. Another way to use old newspaper is to wet it and clean your windows with it. The ink from the newspaper is a great cleaning solution. It gives the newspaper a second use before you recycle it and it will save you money.
What Happens At A Recycling Center?/ Que Pasa En Un Centro De Reciclaje?

Recycle tips are not meant to make things harder on your lifestyle. If anything they are meant to make things easier and more cost effective to be included into you lifestyle. By incorporating just a few recycle tips a month into your daily routine, you might find that it is not as hard to recycle as you thought and you might be surprised at how much money it might save you in the long run.
Author Resource:- Curt Roese is the author and is a Real Estate Broker holding the EcoBroker and NAR GREEN Designations. Find more information about recycling and sign up for his informative newsletter at Green Healthy Home

Article From

Thursday, January 22, 2009

Energy efficient tumble dryers

According to recent research, it seems that nearly sixty percent of the household in the United Kingdom actually own a tumble dryer, which mean that around fourteen million households use electricity to dry their clothes when they could just hang them outside or inside therefore saving a lot of energy!
Apparently, using a standard dryer means that you would use around 4KWh of energy and produce around 1.8 kg of CO2. Even if drying your clothes outside is particularly difficult in the United Kingdom with so few sunny and dry days.
There are currently three types of tumble dryers used in the United Kingdom which are the electric venting tumble dryer, the electric condensing and finally the gas tumble dryer. It seems that the most energy efficient one is actually the gas tumble dryer. Sadly though only few of those are being produced and sold here.
For information, a condenser tumble dryer will collect water and you will then have to empty it, whereas a vented tumble dryer will have a hose that leads the hot air out of the home and need to be connected to an outlet in the wall with a vent installed on it.

Another way of saving energy is for example to buy tumble dryer spare parts like Bosch spares or Hotpoint spares when your tumble dryer is broken. By doing so you will not have to buy another tumble dryer and the life of yours will improve.

Whereas finding energy efficient fridges is becoming very easy, just as well as getting fridge spares like white knight spares or others, tumble dryers are not that good when it comes to energy saving and a lot of them tend to be in the C rating or even lower instead of A or B.
Interestingly, an A+ fridge used for twenty four hours a day will produce around 116 kg of CO2 but an A rated tumble drier used three times a week will generate around 160kg of CO2 per year, which is pretty high.

It is very important nowadays to consider the impact on the environment your appliances will have, so make sure you check everything before buying a tumble dryer, a fridge or anything else. A lot of those appliances can now be bought online and websites usually provide a lot of information. On top of that, a lot of appliances usually have plenty of different programmes with some of them being more energy efficient than others.

Article Source:

Friday, January 16, 2009

Green Kitchen Guide to Energy Efficient Stove Cooktops

Green Kitchen Guide to Energy Efficient Stove Cooktops

Author: Sunny Miller

When it comes to designing a green kitchen, evaluating stove cooktops for their energy efficiency can cause you to make a decision between convenience or your preferred method of cooking and being eco-friendly. But, if you really want to conserve energy and help to reduce your carbon footprint, your stove cooktop is something you need to consider in your kitchen design.

Unless you are going to cook in your fireplace over an open flame, you've got to consider the energy usage of the model of stove or cooktop that you buy. Most cooks prefer a gas cook top. With gas, the heat is easier to control and this can make cooking a lot easier.

However, gas stoves are powered by natural gas which is a fossil fuel and, as we know, fossil fuels are not that environmentally friendly. On the other hand, the electricity that powers electric cook tops comes mainly from coal burning power plants which, once again, are not that environmentally friendly. So, what's an environmentally sympathetic cook to do?

When it comes right down to it, choosing stoves and cooktops that are practical and good for the environment boils down to one thing - the efficiency of energy usage.

Which Stove Cooktops Are Most Energy Efficient?

When looking for energy efficiency, the electric cooktops are going to beat the gas ones hands-down. They are simply more efficient, so if the environment is tops on your list, go with electric.

But, there are many different types of electric cooktops that you'll need to evaluate for your green kitchen. In today's electric cooktops, there are many choices between the surface elements. These include induction elements, halogen elements and the traditional electric coil that seemed to be almost old-fashioned today. Each of these has it's advantages and disadvantages and they are not all equal when it comes to energy efficiency.

Needless to say, the newer technology cooktops are going to be more costly but they will also be more energy-efficient. The induction stove is the most energy-efficient because it transfers energy electromagnetically right to your pan. Of course, these are the highest priced.

The ceramic glass cooktops that use halogen elements are the next best when it comes to using energy, however if you don't have very flat pans, you will be wasting energy because they do not work efficiently if there isn't good pan to cooktop contact.

The least expensive - the electric coils are also the least energy-efficient not to mention the least attractive so please cross these right off your list when shopping for new cooktops for your kitchen!

Basics Of Energy Efficient Living: A Beginner''s Guide To Alternative Energy And Home Energy Savings

When considering stove cooktops for your kitchen, you're going to have to weigh your budget with your desire to lower your carbon footprint. Just like most things in life, you have to compromise to achieve your goals. Going with a higher-priced and more efficient model might cost you more upfront but can save on your energy expense as well as your impact to the environment over time.

About the Author:
To find out more about which stove cooktops are more energy efficient as well as get more tips for an eco-friendly green kitchen, visit the Green Kitchen Design Guide.

Article Source:

Sew Your Own Reusable Shopping Bag or Tote

Sew Your Own Reusable Shopping Bag or Tote

Author: Di Ellis

It's very easy to make your own reusable shopping bag or tote. All you need is some sturdy fabric (such as heavy duty calico) and some cotton webbing or braid for the handles.

Suitable Fabrics & Notions

As noted above, you should choose a sturdy fabric such as heavy duty cotton or calico. To make one bag you'll need half a yard of fabric (assuming the fabric width is 43" or more). For metric sewers, you'll need ½ metre of fabric if the fabric is at least 106cm wide.

It may also be worthwhile to invest in some quality thread, as you may be carrying some heavy items in your bag, and you cannot afford to have your bag break due to cheap quality thread!

For the handles, I recommend cotton webbing or braid about 1" wide (2.5 cm). You'll need 48" of the webbing (or 122 cm).

To Make Your Pattern

There are only 5 pieces to cut out. 2 rectangles form the bag's front and back, there is one long piece that joins the front and back (to give the bag depth), and then 2 pieces for your handles.

Lay your fabric face down, and then draw out your rectangles as follows:

Bag sides (you'll need 2 of these) 13½" wide by 14½" tall (this gives a ½" seam allowance). In metric, this is 2 rectangles 34cm by 36cm (with a 1cm seam allowance).

Then you'll need long rectangle measuring 42½" by 5½" (or 106cm by 12cm).

Lay them out as shown in this diagram and then cut out.

Take your webbing and cut 2 handles each 24" long (or 61cm).

To Make Up

Basically, the long piece of fabric needs to be sewn along three sides of each rectangle (as shown in this diagram Place one rectangle along the side of the long piece (right sides together) and start sewing. Stitch slowly when turning the corners of the rectangle. I strongly recommend that you sew each seam twice for extra strength, especially at the corners.

Now attach your handles to the bag and sew on by sewing a rectangle, then sew a cross in the middle (see this diagram Again, it would be wise to double stitch these seams.

It doesn't matter whether you attach the handles to the inside or the outside, it's up to you. And that's it. Very simple.

About the Author:

Diane Ellis has been sewing since she was very young and got her first sewing machine at 6 years old (albeit a miniature one!). She sews purely for friends and family, and enjoys making her own patterns, and using her skills to decorate her home. She is the co-author of the website where, for a limited time, you can sign up for a free 6 part sewing course called Easy Fun Sewing Projects.

Article Source:

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

5 Things you can do Right Now to Go Green

When the people I talk to hear the words “going green” they right away think about people that live in the woods, love nature, and eat figs and nothing else. The fact is going green is more than just not cutting down trees or driving less. There is a whole plethora of things that are considered “going green”. Here are five things you can do today to go green.
Buy Organic

In a nutshell organic foods are foods grown without the use of pesticides and chemical fertilizers. Breaking that down even further organic foods are also grown as part of a permiculture as opposed to a monoculture. A permiculture is farming where multiple varieties of vegetation are grown in the same area to maximize the soil, sun and compost. An example would be growing tomatoes next to sugar beets. A monoculture is farming where you grow just one type of vegetation in a field. The best example of this is a corn field. By going organic you are purchasing vegetation that does not use any means of chemicals. As the demand for non-organic foods goes down so will the need for chemicals. A lot of times organic foods are cheaper if they are grown locally.


When items are not in use unplug them. Sounds simple right? Well you would be surprised at which appliances draw power that is not even in use. If you are not using an appliance unplug them to ensure that no power is being drawn. Not only does this help you go green by using less electric but will help you save some money as well.

Save Water

Even though water covers over 75% of the earth most of it is not drinkable. Therefore we must do our part to conserve the drinkable water that we do have. You can take a shower instead of a bath, make sure you do your laundry on the appropriate size setting, do not run the water while you brush your teeth or shave, to name a few. Again this is a tip that not only helps conserve water but will also save you some money.
Reduce, Reuse, Recycle


Sure this one is common sense since you more than likely recycle, paper, bottles, plastics and cans. But did you also know that you can recycle your food waste. The process of recycling your food waste is called composting. By burying your food waste (no steak bones) in a hole about 2 to 3 foot deep, what you are doing is supplying food to earthly creatures, i.e. worms, bacteria and fungi in the soil. When you do this their castings supply nutrients to the soil which creates an ideal growing environment for flowers, vegetables, trees and other plants. If you have a garden you should definitely give this a try.

Educate Yourself

Last but not least, but last for a reason is to familiarize yourself with what you can do in regards to going green. It can be as easy as doing a Google search on the Internet or reading a book from the library. Educating yourself will give you the tools you need to be successful in helping out your environment.

These are just 5 of the many ways you can participate in the art of going green. You will find as educate yourself more that going green usually translates into saving money. So not only are you helping the environment, but you are saving some money in the process. About the Author:
Mr. Tucker is a regular contributor on Bukisa, an online community for writers that pay you for your articles. You can also follow him on Twitter.