Green Resolutions for 2012

It’s a new year, which means that it’s time to make some resolutions. Everybody makes resolutions for the new year, but how about some resolutions that aren’t focused on us? 2012 should be the year that you start making resolutions to be greener for the planet. Here are a few suggestions to help you be much greener in the new year.

Red Meat

The red meat industry is one of the biggest industries for creating greenhouse gases, waste and pollution. Start 2012 off by reducing your consumption of red meat. The meat industry is known to pump their meat with preservatives so not only will you be helping the planet, you will be helping your body.


Most of the time you will need a car to run errands around town. However, if you’re just going to the post office or you need something from the local supermarket, consider riding your bike. Taking an hour to ride your bike instead of a couple of minutes by car is not always an option, but when it is you should consider cutting down on your carbon footprint while enjoying the day with a bike ride. This will also cut down on the wear and tear on your car.

Buy In Bulk And Use Less

This is a great resolution to cut the costs of household items while cutting down on the gas used to ship items around the country. When you buy in bulk you spend less money on items that you’re going to need anyway. Using less reduces the frequency in which you need to buy the items and reduces waste. Consider getting a membership at a warehouse dealer like BJ’s or Sam’s Club.

Buy Ebooks- Go Paperless

Ebooks are a great way to reduce the amount of trees that are cut down every year for paperbacks. Ebooks are also cheaper and some are offered for free in PDF form. Consider buying an iPad or an Amazon Kindle to help save trees and reduce the cost of buying books from a bookstore. Although the initial investment in a reader can be high, the savings over time will be much more.

Green Your Room to Help You Sleep Better

Greening your room is a proven way to help you sleep better. When your room is filled with junk it can create anxiety and keep you up at night. If you’re having trouble falling asleep at night, you should green out your room. The environment that you sleep in has a lot to do with how you sleep. Here are a few things that you can do to green your room and help you sleep better.

Air Quality

The air quality in your home can have a lot to do with why you’re not sleeping very well. When the air quality is poor you will be breathing in dust and hair. To improve the air quality in your home, you can change out the air filters with green filters. These are made out of recycled materials. You can also dust the surfaces in your room weekly. This will cut down on the amount of dust and hair in your room. Vacuum the carpets in your room twice a week to remove the hair and dust. Wash your sheets weekly to cut down on ingesting dirt and make sure that you’re changing your pillowcases frequently.


The lights in your bedroom can easily inhibit your sleeping. Lighting from your alarm clocks, computer monitors and other electronic devices can disrupt your sleep cycle. Turn off computer monitors and power down any electrical devices that you don’t need. Alarm clocks can show the time, but also provide a lot of light. Remove alarm clocks and use the alarm on your phone to cut down on the lighting in your room. If you can’t remove the alarm clock, use the dimmer feature to lower the lighting. Excessive lighting in your room can easily draw more power and waste electricity. Green your room by dimming or eliminating lighting all together and you should get to sleep much faster.

Remove The Clutter

The clutter in your room can affect your sleep patterns subconsciously. One of the best ways to green out your room is donate all of the junk that you’re not using. Clutter can also lead to dust and this affects the air quality. Go through all of your stuff and make a pile of everything that you don’t need. Donate the items to local shelters or you local community thrift store. This will give back to the community while helping you sleep a lot better.

Ccs to the Rescue: Innovation By and For the Dreamers

Dreamers imagine this: a form of electricity which emits to the atmosphere ZERO carbon dioxide emissions, while being affordable.
Dreamers imagining, you are engaging the vision proposed by MIT researcher Dr. Thomas Adams and Lammot du Pont professor of Chemical Engineering, Paul I. Barton.

Their system uses solid-oxide fuel cells to produce power from fuel without burning it. The electricity generating system runs on natural gas, plentiful to the point of lasting approximately 60 years at current consumption rates.

Such innovations like these are what we are in such dire need of. As it stands today, natural-gas power plants produce an average of 1,135 pounds of carbon dioxide for every megawatt-hour of electricity that is produced; while natural gas accounts for only 22% of electricity production.

The system of solid-oxide fuel cells would eliminate harmful gas emissions, and only release pure carbon dioxide into the air. The process of carbon capture and sequestration (CCS) would store the carbon dioxide underground. The same cell system would also produce clean water, useable for a plethora of purposes.

Carbon Capture Sequestration involves separating out the carbon dioxide from other gases and injecting the potentially harmful gases into deep geological formations, keeping them from heading out into the atmosphere.

While the cheapest fuel will always be pulverized coal, the system designed by Adams and Barton comes fantastically close.

A very low level of carbon tax, about $5 to $10 per ton, would make the technology cheaper than coal plants. Combined-cycle natural gas plants, the most efficient type of fossil-fuel power plants, could be set up with a carbon capture system, thereby reducing the output of greenhouse gases by more than 90% at a comparable cost and even with a substantially higher efficiency. Once there is a form of carbon pricing, the true price exacted on the environment by greenhouse gas emissions will be known and seen by all.

Prototype megawatt-scale plants are planned for 2012. Once the system has been proved at any size, it may be increased to fill the need.
Ultimately an instance of innovation by and for the dreamers.

Green and White: A Guide to Eco-Friendly Winter Sports

Skiing and snowboarding are fun, beautiful, healthy, exciting and sexy – really all that and a bag of chips. However it is obvious that these hipster pastimes, cause somewhat of an environmental threat – though fret not extreme sports folk, there is a way to be environmentally safe when you hit the slopes this winter.

pamporovo skiingWhere there’s a will, there’s a way. Thanks to creators of ski and snowboard gear and resort owners, there are multitudinous ways to make your carbon footprint, look more like a barely discernible snowshoe imprint.

Because of artificial snow, ski resorts become big time emission generators – with all of the climate changes, what with global warming and all, it is a big Catch 22. So it seems obvious that resorts are interested in going green. And skiers and snowboarders should be on board as well. Here are a few tips:

Find Sustainable Skis and Snowboards – for instance, skis made from Paulownia and snowboards made out of bamboo.

Car Pool or Find inner-city shuttles to ski resorts
Go Cross Country – it’s the greenest way to ski
Only pay at Green resorts – Jiminy Peak in Massachusetts has installed a brand new wind turbine which generates just a third of its electricity demands.
Join the Ski Area Citizen’s Coalition
Recycle/Donate Used Equipment
Buy SkiGreen Tags
Do Not Ski in Dubai – famous for their environmentally offensive resorts.

Mars is breathable

I already reported this week that the NASA Phoenix vehicle discovered water on Mars. But now it appears that the robotic lander has also confirmed the presence of a chemical known as Perchlorates.

Mars Phoenix LanderFrom Wikipedia:

Perchlorates are the salts derived from perchloric acid (HClO4). They occur both naturally and through manufacturing. […] They are also used as an oxidizer in rocket fuel and explosives and can be found in airbags, fireworks, and Chilean fertilizers. […] Lithium perchlorate, which decomposes exothermically to give oxygen, is used in oxygen “candles” on spacecraft, submarines and in other esoteric situations where a reliable backup or supplementary oxygen supply is needed. Most perchlorate salts are soluble in water.

In other words, the perchlorates in the Martian ground can be transformed into oxygen! And it’s a good — although toxic — fertilizer for green vegetables.

Environmental Rhymes

Dr. Seuss - The Lorax

Way back in the days when the grass was still green
and the pond was still wet
and the clouds were still clean,
and the song of the Swomee-Swans rang out in space…
one morning, I came to this glorious place.
And I first saw the trees!
The Truffula Trees!
The bright-colored tufts of the Truffula Trees!
Mile after mile in the fresh morning breeze.

And, under the trees, I saw Brown Bar-ba-loots
frisking about in their Bar-ba-loot suits
as they played in the shade and ate Truffula fruits.

From the rippulous pond
came the comfortable sound
of the Humming-Fish humming
while splashing around.

But those trees! Those trees!
Those Truffula Trees!
All my life I’d been searching
for trees such as these.
The touch of their tufts
was much softer than silk.
And they had the sweet smell
of fresh butterfly milk.

I felt a great leaping
of joy in my heart.
I knew just what I’d do!
I unloaded my cart.

In no time at all, I had built a small shop.
Then I chopped down a Truffula Tree with one chop.
And with great skillful skill and with great speedy speed,
I took the soft tuft, and I knitted a Thneed!

The instant I’d finished, I heard a ga-Zump!
I looked.
I saw something pop out of the stump
of the tree I’d chopped down. It was sort of a man.
Describe him?… That’s hard. I don’t know if I can.

Love is in the air

Indulge yourself with the Hemp Love Seat.

The Love Seat is tightly upholstered with sturdy 17oz. Hemp fabric and accent welting giving the Love Seat an incredible surface of interesting variations of natural hemp color and textures.

Environmental Promises – Ralph Nader’s turn

Independent presidential candidate Ralph Nader had taken the time to answer questions submitted by YouTube users, and he also addresses some environmental issues (at 2:50 min).

In the past he was known as the greenest of all presidential candidates to date. This time, however, both Obama and McCain signal a surprising commitment to environmental issues.