Conserve Energy Future https://www.conserve-energy-future.com Your source for green and sustainable living, environmental news and information Sun, 17 Jun 2018 10:29:02 +0000 en-US hourly 1 https://wordpress.org/?v=4.9.6 15 Ways to Get Solar Power Without Putting Panels on Your Roof https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/ways-get-solar-power-without-putting-panels-roof.php Sun, 17 Jun 2018 10:29:02 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7731 15 Ways to Get Solar Power Without Putting Panels on Your Roof The need for energy is always constant and growing in this modern age and the available non-renewable sources of energy in use currently are estimated to run out faster than the time it will take to replenish it. Therefore, there is a growing […]

The post 15 Ways to Get Solar Power Without Putting Panels on Your Roof appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
15 Ways to Get Solar Power Without Putting Panels on Your Roof

The need for energy is always constant and growing in this modern age and the available non-renewable sources of energy in use currently are estimated to run out faster than the time it will take to replenish it. Therefore, there is a growing need for renewable energy sources and solar power is one source that will never run out as long as we live under the sun.

Nonetheless, the main method of harnessing solar power is through solar panels but not everyone has access to this for various reasons. The main one is the initial cost of installation of solar panels, which is very costly. Other reasons may be that one is living in a rented space that does not allow installation of solar panels or one simply does not want to go through the trouble of taking it down when switching living spaces.

photovoltaic-system-solar

Some roofs may also not have strategic advantages for solar installation as it is obstructed to the sun by something taller like a roof or building or one only needs solar energy on the go. Still, brilliant technological advancements have made it possible for everyone to access solar power without having to put panels on the roof. This article will take you through some of the innovative ways for getting solar power without putting panels on your roof.

1. The Use of Solar Power Converters/Adapter

This is a very simple and cheap method of tapping into the solar power grid without owning a power plant. All you have to do is have access to purchase what you need. This device measures the average daily energy use and purchases energy for you from certified solar farms. It uses a smart outlet adapter that measures the electricity you take from your wall outlet and upgrades it to solar power by purchasing small fractions of a solar energy certificate. This is a cheaper way of purchasing solar power in small bits rather than owning the whole grid.

2. Solar Sharing

Just imagine how convenient it would be if you could own the whole network subscription you use for communication. You would have full unlimited and uncharged access to network and you would be able to provide network to others. Owning a solar farm is quite similar. You can own a farm individually or as a community where you share the cost of construction as a group.

Once done, you will be able to get your electricity and have the opportunity to get credit for selling solar power to power companies or individuals. The profits of the credit can then be shared among the members of the group according to everyone’s initial investment. Alternatively, you can be part of a farm by leasing if it is costly to start a farm where you will be making monthly installments.

3. Peer-to-Peer Solar Sharing Networks

If you can’t own it, borrow it. It provides a better way to own something than sharing it. Solar energy can be shared by people living in close proximity to each other. A sun partner can harness solar power from a sun host who has installed panels on their roof, for a fee of course. This type of solar sharing is more personalized and easier as you get energy directly from your neighbors and you will never run out of energy as long as your neighbor has it.

4. Solar Powered Bike

It charges the battery while the bike is standing still. The solar cells and the battery provides energy for the motor while in motion. Other bikes run on solar power and do not require pedaling as it moves on the energy absorbed. The solar bikes have batteries that charge and once full, the energy stored can as well be used to charge phones and other small electric devices like tablets. Phones can also be mounted on the bike and used for navigational purposes.

5. Solar Powered Grid

The world is rapidly changing to renewable energy and as step towards this goal, governments are installing their own solar farm projects to power their countries. These initiatives are purely for the public and supported by private entities. These solar farms provide electricity to whole cities and can be as large as an airport. All that one needs to do is get connected to the grid as you do to the normal electric grid and get to enjoy energy at very low prices. It is done similarly as the case for geothermal energy and wind farms.

6. Solar Lights

Instead of connecting the whole grid system to a solar panel to use a bulb for lighting, one can use solar lights without having to mount a whole solar panel. These lights are mostly used in developing countries in areas where electricity is not reachable and it is too expensive to install a solar panel. The lights have a solar panel that charges during the day and can be used for lighting for a period of up to twelve hours.

Outdoor solar lights range from jar solar lights inserts that you can hang outside to harness solar power to solar powered motion sensor lights that are mounted outside and act as security lights. The motion detection lights are very functional for ensuring security in your home while saving energy as it only lights up when it detects movement.

7. Solar Power Plug

This is a device that is portable and provides the consumer with an outlet for plugging electronic devices. The device can be mounted on a window or wall that gets access to a large amount of the sunshine rays in your living area and it absorbs this solar energy and converts it to electricity.

This device features a direct plug in that you can directly plug your laptop or phone charger or any other low voltage electronic equipment and use it. This is power on the go as it is also portable and can be easily be carried with you while travelling so you can always have power.

8. Solar Roadways

There have been major technological advances that there will be paved roads with glass solar panels. This Modular paving system of solar panels can be installed on any flat lying ground exposed to the sun such as on roads, parking lots, driveways, sidewalks, bike paths and playgrounds. This covers a wide range of open ground thus the technology will be able to collect a large amount of energy.

Although the project is at its beginning stage, when it will be fully implemented, the entire city or neighborhood could be able to charge itself while on the move. The Glass surface is tested for traction, load testing and impact resistance where even movement of vehicles will not cause damages or prevent the energy from charging.

best-solar-backpacks

9. Solar Powered Backpacks

Solar powered backpacks have small panels at the front of the bag facing the open air and is exposed to the sun. Besides, solar backpacks are water resistant and can be used for all types of weather. Solar bags enables you to use power while literally on the go. One can simply plug in the laptop or the phone and move while they are charging. Solar backpacks also have a battery that fills up when charging and the power can be used during the night when there is no exposure to sunlight.

10. Solar Cookers

This innovation was developed to enable one cook outside with the help of solar energy. These are cookers mounted with solar panels on the side that absorb heat from the sun and can be used to cook from simple things like boiling water to barbeque that requires a large amount of energy. Solar cookers are a smart innovation that allows one to cook without the use of gas or fossil fuels namely firewood and coal that have detrimental effects to the environment such as the release of carbon to the air and loss of tree cover.

11. Solar Charged Devices

In this millennial age, the main reason we use power is to charge our phones and laptops. Well, what if you don’t have to plug in your phone or laptop charger in the socket ever again. Modern technological advancements allows for phones and laptops that are solar enabled.

All you have to do is walk around in the daylight with your phone or laptop and it automatically charges itself. The battery life can last up to twelve hours off charge that is from sun down to sun rise just in time for the sunlight the very next day.

12. Solar Water Heater

A solar water heater is a device that can be used to capture sun’s energy in order to heat the water in your pipes that can be used taking baths, showers, etc. Solar water heaters are widely used for residential as well as for some industrial applications. A solar power heater uses solar thermal collector installed on the roof to heat the water.

13. Portable Solar Generator

Portable solar generators are machines that convert solar energy into electrical energy. The other main benefit of these machines is that they are portable which means you can caryy them anywhere at your own convenience. When looking for an appropriate solar powered generator, a lot of factors need to be considered.

These include the size of the generator, the amount of time it takes to charge up the battery, the battery’s electrical capacity, the weight of the generator and the expected use that one might have for the generator. Here is a list of best solar powered generators available in the market right now.

14. Solar Powered Water Pumps

Solar water pumps are those that depend on solar energy to operate. They need the energy to pump water from the water source to the desired location. In other words, a solar powered water pump basically runs on sunlight. It functions just as all solar enabled devices, that is, through the conversion of solar energy into electrical energy. Here is a list of the best solar powered water pumps available in market right now.

15. Solar Powered Watch

A solar powered watch is a watch that runs entirely or partly by solar cell. Typically, sunlight and artificial light are absorbed by a solar panel behind the crystal. This solar panel converts the light into electrical energy to power the watch. The watch will usually store energy in a rechargeable cell to power itself during the night.

The post 15 Ways to Get Solar Power Without Putting Panels on Your Roof appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Glaciers in Antarctica are Melting at a Very Fast Pace as a Result of Global Warming https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/glaciers-antarctica-melting-very-fast-pace-global-warming.php Sun, 17 Jun 2018 08:56:13 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7762 Glaciers in Antarctica are Melting at a Very Fast Pace as a Result of Global Warming The Ice sheets in Antarctica are melting increasingly as a result of climate change. However, it important to know that within a decade, the melting of glaciers in Antartica has tripled, thus, driving about 200 billion tons of ice […]

The post Glaciers in Antarctica are Melting at a Very Fast Pace as a Result of Global Warming appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Glaciers in Antarctica are Melting at a Very Fast Pace as a Result of Global Warming

The Ice sheets in Antarctica are melting increasingly as a result of climate change. However, it important to know that within a decade, the melting of glaciers in Antartica has tripled, thus, driving about 200 billion tons of ice into the oceans thereby raising the sea levels to half-millimeter annually, according to a report published on Wednesday by Nature.

Scientists have further warned that if the increased rate of melting proceeds to an alarming rate, it would raise the ocean levels and could be disastrous for low-lying cities and communities. In addition, the end result of this also denotes that countries have a shorter time to decrease the level of greenhouse effects, probably less than a decade if they are hoping to avoid the extreme costs of global warming.

glacier-mountains-landscape

It is also necessary to keep in mind that Antarctica has the biggest glacier in the world but right now, this same glacier has more than 200 billion tons of ice melted within a decade. Every year, it lost 49 billion tons of ice. This was according to a research done by a team of experts in Antarctica.

The research work which was formally called “The Ice Sheet Mass Balance Inter-comparison Exercise (IMBIE)” included 84 scientists, 44 international organizations and 24 satellite surveys, is now published by Nature. The Centre for Polar Observation and Modelling (CPOM) press release also conveyed that the melting of glaciers from 2012 to 2017 contributed to the 0.6 millimeters of the level of sea rise across the globe. Before 2012, the melting of ice was at a decreased level and consistent at about 76 billion tons annually, just contributing 0.2 millimeters of the level of sea rise.

An Antarctic scientist from the University of California at Irvine, Isabella Velicogna said, “We took all the estimates across all different techniques, and we got this consensus

The detailed record shows an acceleration, starting around 2002.” One of the research authors, Beata Csatho made this known.

Csatho said that if we are to compare the first decade and the last one, the melting of glaciers in Antarctica has doubled. “Actually, if you compare 1997-2002 to 2012-2017, the increase is even larger, a factor of more than 5!!”

The research leader who is also CPOM director, Andrew Shepherd, said this to BBC News: “A three-fold increase now puts Antarctica in the frame as one of the largest contributors to sea level rise.” He also added that “the last time we looked at the polar ice sheets, Greenland was a dominant contributor. That’s no longer the case.”

Pine Island and Thwaites Glaciers in the West of Antarctica have the highest amount of melted ice. Also, this melted ice fall on the Peninsula of Antarctica.

However, the IMBIE research was not only the research conducted and publicized on Wednesday. In regards to the effects of global warming in Antarctica, an institution in Waterloo also publicized their study in Science Advances and they have found a means of which the ice loss in Antarctica can be accelerated at a much faster pace.

It is necessary to know that it took two years for the study in Waterloo to discover that increased air temperatures and sea levels are undermining ice shelves from below, thus, making them crack on top, which tends to increase the possibility of the ice breaking off. This was according to the press released by the University of Waterloo which was publicized by Phys.org.

Christine Dow, the research leader from the University of Waterloo made it clear that this discovery might decrease the time-frame at which glaciers collapse and the rise of sea levels globally.

This study is more evidence that the warming effects of climate change are impacting our planet in ways that are often more dangerous than we perhaps had thought. There are many more vulnerable ice shelves in the Antarctic that, if they break up, will accelerate the process of sea level rise.” Dow made this known.  She also added this: “If you start removing mass from there. You can have a very large-scale evacuation of ice into the ocean and significant sea-level rise.”

Dow and her team also discovered that places with major ice are inducing deep crevasses beneath the floating ice shelves that hold these glaciers in shape. These ice shelves tend to crack from within and break off large pieces. “Anywhere you have thinner ice, it’s going to be weaker,” Dow also pointed out.

Another research on the melting of glaciers in Antarctica from the Imperial College London stated what will occur to the ice and wildlife of the South Pole in 2070 if global warming is not reduced. The new research also made emphasizes to Antarctica that climate change would cause the glaciers there to contribute 27 centimeters to the global sea rise levels if adequate measures are not enforced.

Image credit: pixabay

The post Glaciers in Antarctica are Melting at a Very Fast Pace as a Result of Global Warming appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
15 Super Ways to Have an Eco-friendly Picnic https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/super-ways-have-eco-friendly-picnic.php Thu, 14 Jun 2018 07:52:57 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7733 15 Super Ways to Have an Eco-friendly Picnic The sun is out, the skies are blue, and the sun rays hit the wet grass, giving it that twinkle in the daylight and there is the fresh smell of air. It often inspires many to go outdoors, especially to connect and just be in love with […]

The post 15 Super Ways to Have an Eco-friendly Picnic appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
15 Super Ways to Have an Eco-friendly Picnic

The sun is out, the skies are blue, and the sun rays hit the wet grass, giving it that twinkle in the daylight and there is the fresh smell of air. It often inspires many to go outdoors, especially to connect and just be in love with nature. The best way to get this done and eat while having fun, is basically through a picnic. It brings fun to the family as an outdoor event that strengthens the family bond.

But as we get these aesthetic benefits from the environment that surrounds us, it is also fundamental for us to try give back to the environment the beauty and serenity it gives us too. That is why it is essential when planning for your picnic, to have an eco-friendly one. What do we mean by that? Here are 15 super ways to have an eco-friendly picnic this year.

woman-lying-on-blanket-under-man-on-her-legs-holding-hands

1. Have the picnic at a local location

Instead of taking much time and energy travelling from one place to another just to have a picnic, why not just source for awesome venues from around your location. I bet you haven’t tried them all, with the help of the internet and navigational technology, you can easily look up and discover great picnic spots in your area while still learning and getting to know your locality.

A simple backyard picnic would also do for a fun family picnic. This saves you on fuel money or travel expenses if you are planning to travel outside your region or country. You can also take public transportation to a spot that is close by. It aids in reducing air pollution that would be made by the long drive to a distant picnic area.

2. Clean up the area after the picnic event

Clean up your picnic area and that of your neighbors if they leave a mess behind. There is no need to upset the ecosystem with the large amounts of junk left over after a picnic. Litter finds its way to the neighboring area and water ways, which can cause harm to wild animals.

Certified picnic areas have trash cans that are sorted out into recyclables and non-recyclables, organic and non-organic. So, dispose your waste in an environmentally friendly manner. If your picnic area doesn’t house these facilities, you can carry your trash home to sort and throw them away.

3. Avoid packages and take away

Ordering take out seems like the easy option when planning a picnic, but do you realize the amount of waste take out generates? It does not only generate large amounts of waste, but the packaging is also made out of plastics, which when littered is harmful to the environment. Wrappings used to pack, that prevent spillages of liquid food can also be quite a huge amount. It is better to avoid wrappings all together by buying tightly closed containers that keep the food fresh. This will minimize carbon footprint as much as possible. A zero-waste meal is always the best way to have an eco-friendly picnic.

4. Only carry what you need

Because a picnic is outdoors and sometimes deep into the woods and parks, far from regular amenities such as shops, it is very easy to over pack for a picnic just in case you might need something that can’t be easily accessible. The best way to make sure that you carry only what you need is to begin planning for the picnic early. For example, you have to identify the activities that will take place during the picnic to know exactly what to pack for the trip.

5. Use natural repellants and sunscreen

Experiencing the outdoors comes along with bugs and insects of all types and some can be irritating by trying to get into your meal. Some can also be harmful. So, you will want to keep these little creatures at bay by applying a repellant on the skin or carry an insecticide that you spray on bugs that try to get on your picnic blanket. However, these products contain harmful chemicals that when exposed to the environment, the buildup can be very harmful. Therefore, it is better to opt for natural skin protection and repellants that are less harmful to natural life.

6. Get the picnic utilities from your home instead of buying new

You have all what you need for a picnic in your house. The perfect blanket is tucked away somewhere behind your closet, the perfect carry-on bag may just be that grocery bag that is lying in a drawer somewhere in the kitchen. Take a good look around your house, the best tools for a picnic are just around, those mugs, tumblers, stainless utensils, and cloth napkins are all  what you need for an eco-friendly picnic. Home supplies cuts back on waste, spending and carbon emissions that come with the purchase of new products. Now you don’t have to spend so much money to experience the fun outdoors.

7. Have an eco-friendly menu

Have meals in your menu that have less harmful products to the environment and you can’t go wrong with organic foods that are nutritious and plant based. Isn’t outdoors the best place to eat a salad? You can also grow your own products or get them at your nearest farmers market which will not only help you go green but also support systems that would keep the planet healthy.

An eco-friendly meal with compostable products that break down naturally and safely benefits the environment in numerous ways. Above all, avoid food stuffs with chemicals that are not only harmful to your health but also the environment.

8. Avoid disposables

Avoid products that have only the functionality of one use in their shelf life like plastic bottles. Avoid paper cups and plates, and plastic spoons and forks, which are used only once and thrown away; generating a lot of waste and litter that is harmful to the environment if not disposed responsibly.

One can carry reusable cloth napkins instead of paper towels and tissue. Avoid napkins which can easily be blown away by wind because they litter the environment. Also, avoid meals that generate waste like fruits. If that can’t be avoided, make sure you dispose the peels responsibly.

picnic-outdoors-family-friends

9. Re-use

Have reusable utensils such as cutlery and flatware that can be used during the picnic. You can also use reusable containers for water instead of carrying bottled water. Use a bottle with a built-in filter that can easily be refilled with water from the nearby water source in the park. Avoid straws that can only be used just once and thrown away. Instead, use spoons or just sip your drink directly from the cup. Have utensils that you can use again and again.

10. Avoid breakables

Apart from glass being too heavy bulky, glass almost always does not make it back to the kitchen after a picnic. It is, therefore, better to use stainless steel dishes and storage containers, bamboo silverware sets, or stainless drinking glasses. Glass particles are also dangerous when they break on the ground because you can end up hurting yourself, ruining a perfectly good picnic.

11. Bring your pet

Your pet is fun to have around during a picnic to run around and play with the kids but make sure your pets have name tag collars and leashes to keep them safe. Your dog not only adds up the fun to a picnic, they also feed on food remains from the picnic and the accidental spills from the picnic meal so you don’t have to throw it away. Eventually, you don’t litter the picnic site.

12. Use your hands

Using your hands will help you avoid carrying utensils that are often bulky, you can serve finger foods such as salads and banana oat bars that do not require cutlery. But ensure you clean your hands before and after the meal.

13. Plan ahead for the aftermath

Most people feel lazy and end up not doing a thorough job after having their picnic meal. It is at this point that everyone is full and lazy and only want to take the ride back to the house or take a nap. Therefore, it is important to plan ahead for the aftermath of a picnic meal so that it doesn’t contribute to unnecessary littering due to the feeling of laziness and wanting to leave things at the picnic site.

14. Protect the habit from children and pets

Children and pets can sometimes interfere with the ecosystems and ways of life of native species plants, nesting birds, and other small creatures in the park or picnic surroundings. As adults accompanying kids and pets to the park or any other alternative picnic areas, ensure you choose places for them to play that is away from native plant species and nesting birds.

15. Recycle

Think about recycling only when you are out of the reducing and reusing options. You can recycle by using water leftover from the ice of the cooler to water nearby plants. Also, dispose used cans and bottles in appropriate areas where they can be collected for recycling.

Image credit: Helena , pixabay

The post 15 Super Ways to Have an Eco-friendly Picnic appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Vatican Conference: Pope Urges Big Oil to Lead in the Fight against Climate Change https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/vatican-conference-pope-urges-big-oil-lead-fight-against-climate-change.php Thu, 14 Jun 2018 07:27:53 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7752 Vatican Conference: Pope Urges Big Oil to Lead in the Fight against Climate Change In the conference that took place in Vatican City, Pope Francis called all big oil companies to lead in the fight against climate change in which during the conference he referred to climate change as a challenge of ‘epochal proportions’ that […]

The post Vatican Conference: Pope Urges Big Oil to Lead in the Fight against Climate Change appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Vatican Conference: Pope Urges Big Oil to Lead in the Fight against Climate Change

In the conference that took place in Vatican City, Pope Francis called all big oil companies to lead in the fight against climate change in which during the conference he referred to climate change as a challenge of ‘epochal proportions’ that must be put to halt at all cost.

During this conference, the pope clearly addressed these oil companies and told them to immediately desist from the use of fossil fuels and its exploration if they want the earth a safer place to be. The Pope himself also stated that instead of using fossil fuels, clean fuels should be used and harnessed.

polar-bear-climate-change-bear

However, it is important to know that this type of conference strictly addressing climate change is the first-of-its-kind in Vatican City and it attracted oil executives, investors and experts. This was stated by The Guardian on Saturday.

Civilization requires energy, but energy use must not destroy civilization.” This was the closing remark of the pope during the conference meeting, according to The Guardian.

Pope Francis has become one the leaders to take on the fight against climate change after his trailblazing encyclical in 2015 and he his still urging top oil companies to desist from the use of fossil fuels and turn to renewable energy.

According to the New York Times, the pope also stated this: “To be the core of a group of leaders who envision the global energy transition in a way that will take into account all the peoples of the earth, as well as future generations and all species and ecosystems.”

In addition to his statements, he also spoke on the need to act as soon as possible. “There is no time to lose,” according to The New York Times.

Furthermore, it is also essential to note that the pope said that the emission of carbon dioxide and greenhouse even after the Paris Agreement has been signed 2 years back is still a big distress and something must be done as soon as possible.

He also criticized companies that search for new oil and gas reserves even though it has been discovered by the scientific research that about two-thirds of the fossil fuels in the world must not be burnt so as to decrease the temperature of the earth to below 20C.

Yet even more worrying is the continued search for new fossil fuels reserves, whereas the Paris Agreement clearly urges keeping most fossil fuel reserves, whereas the Paris Agreement clearly urged keeping most fossil fuels underground. This is why we need to talk together – industry, investors, researchers, and consumers – about transition and the search for alternatives. Civilization requires energy, but energy use must not destroy civilization.”  These were the words of the pope.

Nevertheless, big investors and chief executives of ExxonMobil, BP, and Equinor listened to the commentaries of Pope Francis.

Citing lots of examples for the breathtaking 2015 encyclical about climate change referred to as Laudato Si, the pope himself emphasized that temporary economic boom and global access to energy should not come at the expense of earth.

The need to expand spaces for human activities cannot be met in ways that would seriously endanger our own existence or that of other living species on earth. Our desire to ensure energy for all must not lead to the undesired effect of a spiral of extreme climate changes due to a catastrophic rise in global temperatures, harsher environments and increased levels of poverty.” The pope also added.

During the conference meeting with the “big players” in the oil sector of the world, Pope Francis also emphasized on the need for the world to transit to low carbon product. Creating a cleaner and much safer ecosystem will not only benefit us but it will also protect the poorest inhabitants.

This is a challenge of epochal proportion,” the pope stated. “At the same time, it is an immense opportunity to encourage efforts to ensure fuller access to energy by less developed countries, especially in outlying areas, as well as to diversify energy sources and promote the sustainable development of renewable forms of energy” Pope Francis also added.

It is important also to know that recently, oil firms changed from absolute resentment to the science of climate change to take action on the issues of global warming. For instance, Exxon Mobil who backed the climate denial think tanks from 1998 and 2005 has already endorsed the Paris Agreement.

Also, the Pope applauded the efforts of companies that are fighting against global warming, but he emphasized that the efforts put into the fight are still not enough as much work is needed to be done if they are to win.

Pope Francis also stressed on the aspect of social justice when it has to do with global warming, emphasizing that it would have drastic effects on poor inhabitants and that renewable energy is needed to elevate these poor inhabitants without disrupting the climate and the environment that they live in.

Image credit: pixabay

The post Vatican Conference: Pope Urges Big Oil to Lead in the Fight against Climate Change appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
13+ Sustainable Living Choices That Make Every Day Earth Day https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/sustainable-living-choices-that-make-every-day-earth-day.php Sun, 10 Jun 2018 10:23:56 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7732 13+ Sustainable Living Choices That Make Every Day Earth Day Earth day is a yearly celebration of a contemporary environmental movement. The movement was initiated on April 22, 1970 and is a day when people take time to remember and aid the very one thing that enables their survival, in addition to inspiring action to […]

The post 13+ Sustainable Living Choices That Make Every Day Earth Day appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
13+ Sustainable Living Choices That Make Every Day Earth Day

Earth day is a yearly celebration of a contemporary environmental movement. The movement was initiated on April 22, 1970 and is a day when people take time to remember and aid the very one thing that enables their survival, in addition to inspiring action to help in protecting it. Whether the aim is to garden, consume local foods, recycle or use reusable bags, sustainable living should be incorporated in the day to day activities of our lives.

So, below are 13+ ways of making each day an Earth Day by embracing sustainable living choices.
 person-hand-globe-earth

1. Rethinking transport means

Getting a bike as a means of transport is an effective way of sustaining the environment. It is mostly convenient to people who have a casual dress code at work since it is easier to ride a bike that way. Going to the grocery store can also be much easier in a bike, additionally; it is a form of working out. Using a bike will help in reducing the number of cars on the road, which means it will reduce congestion and pollution of the environment.

The idea here is to skip as many times as you can, other methods could be joining carpooling, walking or using public means. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) suggests that when driving a car, one can reduce taking breaks and gas pedals, receiving customary tune ups such as changing oils and using the maintenance schedule of the manufacturer.

Choosing a fuel friendly car, for example, electric and hybrid vehicles, and shutting the car when not in use as well as avoiding idling are impressive sustainable living choices. Whilst some of the recommendations will require a large amount of money, it should be viewed as an investment in the planet and are easy to put into practice. One can begin with little lifestyle adjustments and then progress to bigger changes. The above are superb alternatives that will make a huge difference in protecting the environment and preserving energy.

2. Starting a garden

There is a lot of energy required to grow and ship food, particularly fresh produce which utilizes a lot of energy and increases carbon footprint. It is simple to counter such by deciding to also be a supplier. One can easily counter some of that by supplying or growing their own foods. Gardening aids in reducing the Carbon Dioxide (CO2) that is emitted during transportation.

A community garden is also an option if an individual is not in a position to start a personal garden. Furthermore, a garden will provide pollinators such as pollen wasps, bees, ants, flower beetles, and butterflies with plants for pollination which will help sustain the eco system and promote biodiversity.

3. Creating an energy efficient home

Making a home energy efficient is simple when one knows how to. Depending on the home, preference and budget, big system changes can be established that will change how energy is consumed or even develop better ways of improving the existing energy saving. There are a lot of options from weather-stripping the doors, stopping drafts, and replacing air filters.

Another option is using solar panels. They are getting more affordable and many people are using them to supply energy for their homes, living in a region that gets sufficient sun is the key. Moreover, updating the light bulbs by changing to more environment friendly and the energy saving ones will also help in conserving energy.

4. Supporting renewable energy

Even though renewable energy is really convenient, the climate gets harsh by the day. Small renewable start-ups are no match to the fossil fuel industry, which has been firmly implanted in the people’s day to day lives, and will not easily relinquish the market share it has in the energy sector.

In this sense, renewable energy corporations require individuals’ assistance in combating this. There are a number of ways in which people can support the transitioning to renewable energy. One of the ways of doing so is by installing solar systems in homes.

However, when this is made impossible due to affordability or lack of sun, another option is by purchasing stocks or investing in a corporation that is in support of green energy. So, spreading the word, using their products, informing other people, or switching to the use of renewable energy will go a long way in making make every day earth day.

5. Skipping single-use objects

The modern lifestyle has been built on convenience and thus, single-use items are encountered on a daily basis. Nonetheless, these items have proven to be costly to the surroundings and with devastating impacts on the environments. Landfills, for example, are full of single-use items like diapers, plastics water bottles, cigarette butts just to mention a few. Other single-use items range from plastic shopping bags, straws that come with food, disposable plates, serviettes, and wet wipes.

What most people are unaware of is that the use of these items can be reduced or eliminated completely. For instance, instead of using paper towels and diapers, cloth towels and napkins can be used respectively since they are cloth which can be cleaned up.

Take away cups can as well be avoided as they are a big problem to the environment by using a reusable cup. Switching out plastic straws for glass or steel metal and staying away from the small cups of sauces served with food are equally sustainable living choices. For those that may be difficult to eliminate, minimizing their usage will greatly help.

6. Avoiding meat on some days

Animal agriculture is one of the biggest contributors to greenhouse gasses. The process involves feeding the animals, butchering and then transporting the meat to where consumers are. Attempting to cut on meat intake is one of the efficient and most sensible ways of helping the globe.

The Dietary Guidelines for America, which gets updated after every five years, advocates that individuals should guzzle about 5.5 ounces of meat a day. Nevertheless, a lot of people reach that limit by the time they are taking lunch. To make a sustainable living choice and ensure every day is an earth day, you can either become a vegetarians that has its added health benefits or reduce the amount of meat eaten.

wind-turbine-wind-energy

7. Buying less

In view of the fact that our modern identities are largely based on the consumer culture with advertising perpetuating it, buying less could be one of the most difficult things to do even though it is crucial. The developed nations cause the emission of more greenhouse gasses and also guzzle a lot of the world’s resources in the name of producing in bulk to supporting the ever rising consumer demands.

The reason is because people have a tendency of wanting more stuff, clothes, better machines, and homes. People think buying the expensive and trendy stuff is what life should be made of. But as absurd as it may sound to some people, purchasing smaller houses, staying with older clothes, and buying fewer devices is a step in the right direction. Buying less makes every day and earth day and encourages sustainable living.

8. Ditch the plastic bags

Plastic bags which are mostly single use end up in landfills and also clog the oceans. Studies conducted show that about eight million metric tons are deposited in the oceans annually. Reduction of single use plastic bags usage is an effectual method of cutting down on the quantity of plastic that ends up in the water bodies. Another research conducted in 2015 by Journal Science suggests the use of reusable shopping bags in stores instead.

9. Swap out the plastic wraps

An alternative to a food plastic wrap is the Bee’s Wrap. It is environment-friendly and super cute. Manufacturing companies can explore this option as a way of making the environment sustainable and ensure we celebrate each day on earth as an environment day.

Notably, it will decrease the dependence on plastic products as it can inspire research on how to completely do away with plastic products (especially the single-use plastic items). The advantage of the Bee’s Wrap is that it is been made from jojoba oil and beeswax-coated organic cotton muslin. Hence, the wrap is reasonably priced, reusable, can be washed and it can decompose.

10. Change to paperless billing

Most of the bills are normally sent through letters, from electricity to rent bills. Paperless billing is a great way of reducing the dependence on papers, a lot of phone companies and utility businesses are encouraging individuals to change to paperless billing as it will save on time and energy. This can be done through accessing the companies’ websites to get the necessary information or asking the company to send you the bills, letters, and receipts via mail.

11. Owning a water bottle

Another single use plastic item that clogs up landfills while polluting water bodies is the commercial water bottles. Buying your own water bottle will end up saving money and avoiding the disposal of plastics in the oceans and in landfills. Additionally, buying stainless steel and glass water bottles means they are normally BPA free – this will protect your health.

12. Enjoy nature

Do stuff such as hiking or nature walks because they help in connecting with nature and reminding one the reason why it is essential to put time, effort and energy in giving back to nature.

13. Volunteering to support environmental programs

Volunteering one’s time to support environmental programs in organizations either at international or local level is an impressive way of making sustainable living choices that make every day earth day. It can be planting trees, funding tree nurseries projects, and collecting litter in the streets. These are important ways of trying to balance the eco-system.

14. Education oneself about the planet

Learning more about the planet will enable people to treasure it more since they will understand better how it works. Sharing the knowledge is also part of the process; creating awareness is one of the steps in reducing environmental degradation.

Image credit: McKylan , Felix

The post 13+ Sustainable Living Choices That Make Every Day Earth Day appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
New Clean Diesel Cars Emit Dangerous Gases, Study Shows https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/new-clean-diesel-cars-emit-dangerous-gases-study-shows.php Fri, 08 Jun 2018 08:08:53 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7727 New Clean Diesel Cars Emit Dangerous Gases, Study Shows The new analysis conducted shows that; as at 2015, the latest models of cars; which uses diesel as their source of chemical energy, since the endorsement of Volkswagen also known as “dieselgate” are surpassing the limits of nitrogen oxides (NOx) assigned or set by the Europe […]

The post New Clean Diesel Cars Emit Dangerous Gases, Study Shows appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
New Clean Diesel Cars Emit Dangerous Gases, Study Shows

The new analysis conducted shows that; as at 2015, the latest models of cars; which uses diesel as their source of chemical energy, since the endorsement of Volkswagen also known as “dieselgate” are surpassing the limits of nitrogen oxides (NOx) assigned or set by the Europe Union.

The International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT) conducted a cumbersome but outstanding emissions test which was carried out using remote-sensing and statistical analysis to ascertain and measure the realistic and factual emissions from the exhaust of over 700,000 and 4,850 cars and vehicles respectively and of varying models of the cars and vehicles across the continent of Europe.

climate change

The Financial Times quoted that; as said by the ICCT based in the U.S that the results obtained were an exact affirmation of the greatest fear envisaged about cars that work using diesel otherwise stated as diesel cars.

From the basic research, the most recent standard of emissions for diesel were far greater than or more than the emissions limits of Euro 6 diesel NOx as measured in a more realistic world driving.

The researchers found the following facts about Euro 6 cars;

  • The entire Euro 6 diesel model which were rated were more than the emission limits of Euro 6 diesel NOx as measured in a more realistic world driving.
  • The lowest-emitting diesel species of NOx emissions is roughly the same as the emissions produced from the highest-emitting petrol Euro 6 vehicle species.
  • Productions from four different manufacturing groups had the average of their emissions 12 times more than the approval of Euro 6 diesel type limit whereas the vehicle species which emits the most has their emissions 18 times above the limit.

A new rating system called The Real Urban Emissions Initiative (TRUE) was used in the compilation of the database used for the rating of the several emissions and it was represented that: the Euro 3,4 and 5 types of diesel were in an extreme region. On the other hand, the gasoline-fueled vehicles were much better represented. Also, almost all Euro 3-5 petroleum vehicles had an average rating, at least to some extent, it was good. Lastly, the entire Euro 6 petrol cars had a very good and convenient rating.

Automobiles, trucks and different non-road vehicles produce NOx which is the major pollutant to the atmosphere and they are detrimental to humans and the environment at large. 38,000 sudden deaths caused by NOx exhaust gases have occurred worldwide. It is worthy of note that 1,100 of such deaths were recorded in the U.S as stated by research from the University of Colorado Boulder.

The European Union has a specific baseline limit for nitrogen oxides per kilometer which is 0.08mph but as noted by the Guardian, the analysis carried out by the Real Urban Emission Initiative (TRUE) shows that the models of diesel released as at 2016 were still five times greater than the limit on an average level.

Peter Mock, the managing director of International Council on Clean Transportation (ICCT), told the Financial Times that it can be absolutely concluded that most of all Euro 6 types of diesel available in the market are not in any way clean.

Greg Archer who is a member of the campaign group Transport & Environment, which is a sub set of the Real Urban Emission Initiative (TRUE) in his own opinion also told the Guardian that as seen in the true rating, in what he captioned as :”the true legacy of dieselgate” stated that several millions of unclean and dirty diesel that are available on the roads produces a toxic particulate gases that humans breathe in on a daily basis and he also said that quick decisions and regulations must be made to eradicate such messes from the atmosphere and to clean up the effects of such pollutants.

On the contrary, The European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association which is a body that represents 15 major car, van, bus and van manufacturers based in Europe stated that the study and the research were deceptive and this statement was generally believed to be spoken based on their selfish reasons.

They argued the fact that the study was conducted and conclusions were made based on the results of the remote sensing carried out between 2011 and 2017 and therefore the result does not contain the analysis of the on-road activity of the most recently produced diesel vehicles which was in the consent of the standards of the Euro 6 standard since September 2017, therefore, stating that the outcome of the study was obsolete and should not be followed or consulted.

The Secretary-General of the European Automobile Manufacturers’ Association; Erik Jonnaert stated that the recent study of The Real Urban Emission Initiative (TRUE) was deceptive to the consumers. There will be great disappointment amongst the European Union, EU policymakers because there is no avowal of the fact that the Euro 6 cars are acquiescing with the recent RDE legislation.

The post New Clean Diesel Cars Emit Dangerous Gases, Study Shows appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
13 Examples of Greenwashing Practices to Mislead or Deceive Customers https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/top-greenwashing-examples.php Tue, 05 Jun 2018 11:02:34 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7704 What is Greenwashing? Greenwashing is when companies and institutions change their aims, products and policies to be environmentally friendly for various reasons such as to gain more customers, hence get more sales and eventually increase stock prices. This practice is also known as Green Sheen, Green PR or green marketing. Different companies in various industries such […]

The post 13 Examples of Greenwashing Practices to Mislead or Deceive Customers appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
What is Greenwashing?

Greenwashing is when companies and institutions change their aims, products and policies to be environmentally friendly for various reasons such as to gain more customers, hence get more sales and eventually increase stock prices. This practice is also known as Green Sheen, Green PR or green marketing.

Different companies in various industries such as food, fashion or travel, use unique techniques to lure in customers depending on the type of products they sell to meet the ever increasing demand of customers for environmentally friendly goods and services. Here are 13 examples of greenwashing to mislead or deceive customers.

earth-globe-birth-new-arise

According to Wikipedia,

Greenwashing, also called “green sheen”, is a form of spin in which green PR or green marketing is deceptively used to promote the perception that an organization’s products, aims or policies are environmentally friendly.

13 Examples of Greenwashing Practices to Mislead or Deceive Customers

1. Changing the name, logo, slogan, motto

Many companies go through rebranding more than once in their life time and most have attempted to rebrand themselves as environmentally friendly. Giving the brand a new name, logo, slogan or motto invokes and incites consumers to buy the product even if it may be misleading to the actual dangerous contents it has.

By simply changing the color of the company logo from yellow or red to green can invoke the illusion of environmentally friendly products. The perceived received from the name or logo is that the product is in fact naturally produced. Images that imply a green impact like drawings of animals, plants, flowers or water can evoke the customer to purchase these products.

2. Perception of legitimacy

This entails focusing on the narrow set of attributes without paying attention to the larger environmental effects. It involves over exaggerating the benefits of a product by only focusing on the small percentage of benefits it has on the environment while ignoring the larger harmful impacts it has in the environment.

It can also involve making an irrelevant and insignificant claim about the product that may be true but it is also not helpful or important in the larger role the product claims to play in conserving the environment. Some companies stoop to the level of making claims that are just completely false and that goes against very many ethical boundaries.

3. Rebranding

This is the creation of a new look and feel for an already existing and established product or company to influence a customer’s perception about the product, a service delivered or even the company in overall. This makes the company look and seem more relevant to the customer’s needs to ‘go green’.

It helps hide the unpleasant facts about the true nature of the company’s products. Rebranding involves a lot of activities that bring attention to the product, making it trend with the consumers, but the effectiveness of this technique does not last long, only until the buzz shifts to a newer and ‘more green’ product.

4. Consumption figures

Companies underestimate the amount of natural resources used. For example, during the manufacture of an automotive, manufacturers optimize on fuel consumption to decrease the cost of ownership of the vehicle and to improve their green image. Terms like energy saving are used on electrical products to encourage purchase. Stating the amount of each and every ingredients for food products is a way of swaying the customers to purchase certain products over others.

This can sometimes be true or overly exaggerated. These figures although are not provable through the shelf life of the product. They simply portray to the consumer that the products are more sustainable over time than other products. In many figures and percentages, they tell the consumer why they should buy the product.

5. Distracting consumers

This is done by diverting attention from something else the company does or diverting your attention from the bigger picture. Marketers do adverts that appeal to the sensitive hearts of the consumers by making images and films that are adorable. Disclosures are written in tiny fonts and are always placed very far away from the qualified claim.

This distracts the customer from actually getting to read and understand the disclosure and its association to the qualified claim. Some consumers don’t even get to read the disclosures at all as they are always at the bottom of the packaging while the green claims are in bold type and near the labelling which distracts the consumer.

6. Differentiating company products

Making consumers choose the lesser evil from two products that are similar or slightly different but with the same impacts on the environment. This is done by highlighting the benefits of your products while shading a light on the disadvantages of rival products. Companies do this to increase purchase of their products compared to that of their competitors while deceiving the innocent consumer who ends up buying the product that does not have any benefit at all.

This practice can also be done by increasing the prices of consumables to attract customers with claims of being cost-effective because of how the ingredients are naturally acquired, therefore, making the product more expensive while they consist of the same components as that of their competitors.

7. Display of complex data

Markets use information and technical terms that the average consumer does not understand in their adverts and product labelling. Interestingly, they make it sounds eco-friendly and accentuates the company’s commitment to the environment.

The manufacturers make some information about the product very complex that the consumer fails to get the exact contribution to the environment a product makes and, as such, relies on the fact that the product is termed to be eco-friendly. This makes it difficult for the consumer to look up and verify the information.

8. Make claims that can’t be proven

This is done by making green claims that are vague and ambiguous. One can almost always not trace the source of their information and, therefore, one cannot sufficiently identify the exact benefits to the environment the product has.

When little to no information is available, consumers only have to contend with the claims the advert is making about the benefits of the products to the environment. In the majority of cases, the information can’t be verified scientifically but the marketers spin it to look legitimate and knowledgeable while it conveys a whole bunch of nothing.

9. Favored partnerships

Claims that the product is endorsed or vetted by reliable companies help boost company sales. Partnership and relationship strategies with non-profit organizations that are at the forefront of protecting the environment, give a company an advantage over the other competitors as it invokes trust from the consumers that the products are legit.

Logos and certifications from government agencies provides the illusion of oversight from the authorities thus proving legitimacy. This, however, is just strategic movements made by the corporate players in the company to cover up the actions and damaging activities that they are doing behind closed doors while improving the corporate reputation and brand image.

10. Green projects

A good example is an oil company conducting an ocean clean-up project to protect the environment after an oil spill. These initiatives are normally taken up by companies after they have been given directives by the government after committing an environmental offense. It usually gives the company an illusion of compliance while, in real sense, it is the opposite of the case as they are just covering up the acts of environmental degradation previously done.

Furthermore, they often place emphasis on the ecological projects rather than the existence of the projects themselves. Companies also at times make substantial donations to environmental projects to appear socially responsible and also have a good reputation.

11. Feedback loops

This is done by using the feedback of the consumers to create the desired image. It encompasses using customer feedback by companies through surveys and focus groups, of what they feel and deem fit to be placed in the category of green products. The information is then used in advertisements to satisfy the consumer’s needs, increasing the rate of purchase. Fascinatingly, the advertisers do not usually air out negative feedback.

12. Production process

The materials and manufacturing technology used to make the products are overly exaggerated to be those that conserve natural resources, energy and the environment. Companies claim they use green solutions during the process of manufacturing or when they operate their businesses.

Eventually, this will produce products that have been examined for any environmental impacts during every step of the production process including the input of raw materials.

13. Pressing issues

It involves making a connection between the products and pressing issues that are affecting the world right now. These are issues that are on the spotlight like climate change and species extinction.

For example, an ad for a plastic bottled water claims that if you buy their product, you are assisting them in preserving water or protecting an endangered species although the water is packaged in plastic that if disposed wrongly, it will impact the environment significantly.

The post 13 Examples of Greenwashing Practices to Mislead or Deceive Customers appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Climate Change Increases Fire Links From California to South Africa https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/climate-change-increases-fire-links-from-california-to-south-africa.php Sun, 03 Jun 2018 09:59:31 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7719 Climate Change Increases Fire Links From California to South Africa The effects of climate change have drastically increased across the world today. It is necessary to know that there is a link between wildfires and climate change which is more prominent today. However, it is necessary to know that there are two recent research that […]

The post Climate Change Increases Fire Links From California to South Africa appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Climate Change Increases Fire Links From California to South Africa

The effects of climate change have drastically increased across the world today. It is necessary to know that there is a link between wildfires and climate change which is more prominent today. However, it is necessary to know that there are two recent research that has been issued in the Geographical Research Letters this month and these research have given lots of insights on the ways in which climate change are increasing the risks of wildfires around the world today.

In California, which is a town with wildfires risks, urbanization and global warming are increasing ground temperatures at the Southern coast, thus, increasing the levels of wildfires. Wildfires cause a lot of havoc and environmental pollution.

earth-globe-water-wave-sea-lake-climate-change

Furthermore, along the Mediterranean region and the temperate areas of the Southern Hemisphere, wildfires are caused as a result of lightning in the clouds and this tends to increase as climate change increases. When lightning is ignited in these areas, it tends to cause wildfires.

It is necessary to know that the research works on the risks of wildfire as a result of climate change was done in California and published on May 24 and reported by the Columbia University in Phys.org Wednesday.

Cloud cover is plummeting in southern coastal California and as clouds decrease, it increases the chance of bigger and more intense fires.”  These were the words of Williams, the research co-author and Columbia University bio-climatologist Park.

According to these researchers, there has been a decrease in cloud cover by 25 to 50% since in the 1970’s and this has been as a result of climate change and urbanization which tend to increase the temperature levels of the ground. High levels of ground temperature tend to drive clouds away and thus, leading the direct sunlight to hit the ground. Increase in ground temperature tends to disrupt vegetation and raise the chances of vegetation to be set ablaze.

Furthermore, these research works made it known that the areas affected by wildfires in southern California have not increased as a result of Urbanization which has reduced the number of lands prone to wildfires. Also, these areas that have been affected by wildfire in southern California have not increased due to the fact that adequate measures like firefighting techniques have been put into place.

Even though the danger has increased, people in these areas are very good at putting out fires, so the area burned hasn’t gone up,” Williams made this known again. “But the dice are now loaded, and in areas where clouds have decreased, the fires should be getting more intense and harder to contain. At some point, we will see if people can continue to keep up.”

In addition, Williams stated that the wildfire incident that occurred in 2017 was caused by wind, a dry fall, and surplus wildfire prone vegetation that surfaced in the rainy seasons after California’s intense drought and not as a result of decreased cloud cover.

It is also important to note that the lightning research was issued on May 15 and conveyed by Portland State University on Thursday in Phys.org.

The research emphasized on the link between the occurrences of lightning-started fires that cause the heating-up of the temperatures of the ground leading to wildfires and the effects of three climate change trends which are, El Nino-La Nina, the Indian Ocean Dipole, and the Southern Annular Mode.

The research work also discovered that global warming raised the occurrence of fires and the impact of all the three climate trends on fires in the warmer part of the 21st century when likened with the end of the 20th century.

We think that by having warmer oceans and warmer temperatures in general, we are going to see higher evaporation and heat transfer, and thus higher frequency of convective storms and in turn results in more lightning-ignited fires,” said Andres Holz, the research co-author, and Portland State University geography professor.

Nevertheless, wildfires in particular, are increased due to the activities of the Southern Annular Mode (SAM), north-south movement of west winds that circulate Antarctica and convey moisture to the southwest tip of continents in the Southern Hemisphere. It is important also to note that all these events occur as a result of the “positive phase” of the Southern Annular Mode when the west winds move away to Antarctica and global warming and the deep hole in the ozone layer have pooled with the climate driver to raise the level of heat and reduce the precipitation levels in Australia, South Africa, and southern South America.

With all these facts, the need to curb the menace of wildfire by limiting the levels of climate change is highly important and Holz has made it known that, globally, unless rainfall patterns change, global warming will tend to increase the wildfires in wet regions and regions that are probably too humid for fires, but this phenomenon tends to decrease in dry regions or areas.

The post Climate Change Increases Fire Links From California to South Africa appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
11 Unexpected Ways You’re Hurting the Environment at Home https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/unexpected-ways-hurting-environment-home.php Sat, 02 Jun 2018 09:52:41 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7695 11 Unexpected Ways You’re Hurting the Environment at Home Over the last decade, there has been a lot of awareness on the various activities that can and will aid humans to conserve the environment. The primary concern has been the deterioration of the environment with the major causal agents being the various forms of pollution […]

The post 11 Unexpected Ways You’re Hurting the Environment at Home appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
11 Unexpected Ways You’re Hurting the Environment at Home

Over the last decade, there has been a lot of awareness on the various activities that can and will aid humans to conserve the environment. The primary concern has been the deterioration of the environment with the major causal agents being the various forms of pollution and the over-exploitation of natural resources.

The destruction of the ozone layer, decreased water levels, and desertification, for example, are some of the consequential impacts of pollution and natural resource over-exploitation. Despite the awareness and the measures put in place to ensure promotion of the environment, there are unexpected ways that people hurt the environment at home. This article shows the most common 11 ways that people unknowingly hurt the environment.

water-fountain-frisch-flow-wind

1. Leaving the tap running

There are specific habits that lead to wastage of water that we might not be aware of at home. Many at times, there is a lot of water wastage during showering as the water is left running even when one is not really in need of using the water. More water wastage is experienced when washing fruits and vegetables where a lot of water is left to run whereas minimal water may have been used.

Also, a simple activity such as brushing teeth also leads to water wastage. Keeping the tap open as an individual brushes their teeth leads to a lot of water wastage. It may seem minimal at the time, but in the long run, the water that is wasted is of a significant amount. In order to conserve the environment, tap water should be used optimally whereby there should be effective usage of water for specific tasks without leading to wastages.

2. Leaving the lights on

Many are the times that due to a rush to complete an activity or to heed a call, rooms are left with the lights on. And it may seem okay since it will only be a matter of seconds and you will make it back. However, those few minutes lead to the consumption of a significant amount of energy which is irreplaceable.

To avoid this, no matter how short the time one is to leave a room, people should practice switching off the light till when they are in need of light. In addition to this, one can place reminder notes on the wall near the switch to remind those occupying the rooms to save on electricity by switching off the lights.

3. Leaving electronic appliances plugged in

At times, when electronic appliances are left on, say a microwave or a water heater, they unnecessarily consume electricity. In addition to this, there are unwarranted uses of electronic appliances that lead to wastages such as boiling too much water instead of the water one needed.

The water needed should first be estimated by using a bowl or a jug before using an electric kettle. This will not only save electricity but also reduce the cost of bills. Similarly, electronic appliances should not be left overnight unless they function 24/7.

4. Regular flushing habits

This is one of the easiest habits that people are accustomed to. By flushing every time one goes to the washroom, a lot of water is wasted. What is more, there are items such as napkins that are flushed down the toilet that are not dissolvable like tissue.

They lead to blockages and damage the waste drainage. Reduced flushing can be enhanced by use of pit latrines to avoid the in-house toilets. Also, deposition of un-dissolvable materials as well as unnecessary flushing should be dissuaded.

5. The use of antibacterial soap

Most households use antibacterial soap for showering as well as other cleaning activities such as laundry. It may seem mild but the use of this soap is a threat to the environs and its surroundings. It has been discovered that this soap contains a chemical that constitutes the composition of chloroform which finds its way in sewers and after treatment, ends up in rivers leading to pollution of the environment. In light of this, the use of organic soap should be encouraged.

6. Leaving computer monitors on

It is way easier to just leave the laptop at sleep mode in order to just flip the lid and the laptop is back on. Nevertheless, energy experts beg to differ. It has been discovered that during the occasional standby modes people put on their laptops, there is considerable consumption of energy. As such, if the computer is no longer in use, rather than leaving it on standby, shutting it down is a better option in order to save the environment.

washing-machine-laundry-tumble-drier

7. Laundry

This is a regular practice that enables maintenance of hygiene using detergents and other washing products. These detergents are party to a number of chemicals, some of which are harmful to the environment. Waste water used during laundry is either directed to waterways or to the earth. The chemicals present in this water end up polluting the waterways, which leads to death of aquatic life.

To the soil, the chemicals end up corroding the soil nutrients rendering the soil infertile leading to soil degradation. These detergents have been seen to corrode skin as well as cause diseases such as cancer. Adoption of natural and organic laundry products would not only conserve the environment but it would also optimize the health of individuals.

8. The use of feminine hygiene products

It is normal and recommended for ladies to maintain proper hygiene. However, the use of hygiene products poses a threat not only to their health but to the environment. The use of sanitary pads is a great threat given that one sanitary pad is equivalent to four plastic bags.

To avoid such impact to the environment, the use of the menstrual cup comes in, which is reusable and can be washed. Also, there are tampons made from natural fiber which do not litter the environment.

9. Eating farmed fish

Fish is a delicacy that most people enjoy. Eaten for its nutritional benefit, fish farming has been introduced to make the fish more available. However, it is not very safe to consume such fishes. Wild fish are accustomed to the eating of sea weeds, smaller fishes and other green matter in water.

Farmed fish do not have that luxury given that they are farmed in an aquarium. They are fed on artificially made food which contains antibiotics as well as various chemical components. If not regulated, consumption of farmed fish can lead to ill-health.

10. The use of household cleaning products

The components of household cleaning products differ from one cleaning product to another. There are various chemical components which despite cleaning efficiently, have a deteriorating impact on the environment. These components can be exposed to the environment during manufacture, packaging or disposal.

Toxins from these products are washed into waterways and some integrate in the air, thereby harming the aquatic life that is dependent on water as well as the communities that are dependent on the waterways polluted. Also, with the air pollution caused, the ozone layer continues to get deformed leading to more global warming. To solve this, it is essential to go for natural and organic cleaning products that service just as well as other cleaning products.

11. Upgrading of technological gadgets

With technology, there is a dynamic flow that ensures that better upgrades are realized to boost the older models as well as to keep up with competition. This poses a challenge to the users as they need to keep getting the newly upgraded models in order to keep up with the market trends and demand. This translates to too many gadgets in the house which are not in use leading to their disposal.

In most instances, the disposal of such gadgets is done poorly which intensifies the amount of waste in the compost. To avoid this, it is easier to upgrade the same tech gadget on a regular basis rather than getting a new one every now and then. Again, this saves on spending costs.

Image credit: webandi , stevepb

The post 11 Unexpected Ways You’re Hurting the Environment at Home appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Climate Change Could Increase the Menace of Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/climate-change-increase-menace-antibiotic-resistance.php Fri, 01 Jun 2018 07:54:00 +0000 https://www.conserve-energy-future.com/?p=7715 Climate Change Could Increase the Menace of Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says One of the increasing threats that are yet to be taken very seriously is the menace of antibiotic resistance. This problem has radically become one of the biggest health challenge faced by mankind. However, antibiotic resistance has been highlighted in the UN Environment Frontiers […]

The post Climate Change Could Increase the Menace of Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>
Climate Change Could Increase the Menace of Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says

One of the increasing threats that are yet to be taken very seriously is the menace of antibiotic resistance. This problem has radically become one of the biggest health challenge faced by mankind. However, antibiotic resistance has been highlighted in the UN Environment Frontiers Report 2017 as one of the 6 major global health problems.

Furthermore, it is necessary to note that antimicrobial resistance is the ability for microorganisms that cause the disease to resist the effects of antibiotics or antimicrobials, thus, multiplying at a very faster rate. A new study has confirmed that by the year 2050, the resistance of infections will be the major cause of sicknesses and death in the world.

climate-change-climate-drought

However, another new study which has currently been issued in the journal Nature has envisaged a linkage between very warm temperatures and antibiotic resistance, further stating that it could be a big global threat on our heating planet. The recent research was headed by epidemiologists from Harvard Medical School (HMS), Boston Children’s Hospital, and the University of Toronto.

The effects of climate are increasingly being recognized in a variety of infectious diseases, but so far as we know this is the first time it has been implicated in the distribution of antibiotic resistance over geographies.” This statement was the words of Derek MacFadden, who is an infectious disease scientist and the co-author of the research work.

We also found a signal that the associations between antibiotic resistance and temperature could be increasing over time,” MacFadden also stated.

However, the research used more than a hundred facilities in the United States, and in the research work, E.coli, K.pneumoniae, and S.aureus were the bacteria used.

With the research work, it was discovered that a 10degree rise in temperature is linked with a 4.2% increase in antibiotic-resistant strains of E.coli, 2.2% increase in the antibiotic-resistant strains of K.pneumoniae, and 3.6% in S.aureus.

Furthermore, another issue has been linked with the menace of antibiotic resistance which was found by the research team and that is, an increase in ten thousand people per square mile is linked with a 3% increase in antibiotic resistance in E.coli and 6% in K.pneumoniae.

The bottom line is that our findings highlight a dire need to invest more research efforts into improving our understanding of the interconnectedness of infectious diseases, medicine, and our changing environment.” These were the words of the research co-author, John Brownstein, the chief director of the Computational Epidemiology Group at Boston.

The menace of antibiotic resistance is becoming a big threat to our global society today. If nothing is done to control this threat it could wipe the whole of humanity, due to the spread of diseases which could result in death. According to the CDC, more than 2 million people In the United States have been subjects to diseases as a result of the problem of antibiotic resistance and at least, more than 24,000 people die annually as a result of these diseases.

Due to the interconnection and the nature of the ecosystem, there is always a continuous interaction with bacteria. Essentially, this can be seen in the aquatic environment where the spread of antibiotic resistance is enormous.

It is however very necessary to know that the menace of antibiotic resistance is life-threating and it has been found that bacteria have become resistant to prominent antibiotics called ‘superbugs.’ This phenomenon has the probability to multiply in tropical counties like India, as a result of climate change and other sanitary problems in the country. It is also necessary to know that India is one of the countries with the highest bacteria disease problem in the world, and this could lead to detrimental problems to its population.

We also know that if there is know that if there is low access to toilets to wastewater treatment, and low hand-washing facilities, there is likely to be increased infection transmission between people,” stated by William Gaze, the lead author of the Frontier’s Reports antimicrobial study.

Due to the fact that climate change is increasing every day, “increased heavy rainfall and flooding can transmit infection more rapidly, both antibiotic-resistant bacterial infection, (from water) and person to person infection,” Gaze made this known. He also said, “on one hand, we have climate change, and on the other, an increasing global population which means more demand on the environment, more pollution, and more waste to dispose off. Heavy rainfall, flooding and wastewater treatment don’t work well together; sometimes even developed countries systems cannot cope.”

Experts are now working at finding more antibiotic products from nature. Maybe in time, a completely new type of drug will be found. There are also experiments using viruses to kill bacteria” Gaze concluded.

Conclusively, even though a statement from WHO has declared that antibiotic resistance is one of the biggest problems in the world today, scientist are now finding new ways to curb antibiotic resistance by producing vaccines to destroy viral diseases.

Image credit: Andreas

The post Climate Change Could Increase the Menace of Antibiotic Resistance, Study Says appeared first on Conserve Energy Future.

]]>