Did you know that electricity used to keep your appliances on standby can light one or more rooms? In a French survey, the average standby power of TV decoders are 11w, VCRs are 9.9w, TVs are 7.3w, Hi-fi stereos are 7.2w, modems are 4.3w, washing machines are 4w and microwave ovens are 3.5w. Compare these figures with the fact that your bedside lamp may only be a 4w compact flourescent light.
Recently the world celebrated Buy Nothing Day. It was a day when millions of people declined to participate in the doomsday economy, in the frantic consumer binge. It was welcomed relief for a day, but it was only a day, a small dent in the orgy of consumerism. Why not a month. Why not declare the month of December as the Buy Nothing Month (BNM). Rules - buy only absolute necessity,
No Ants: Sprinkle baby powder in cracks, along a window sill, or under doors where ants enter. Ants will not walk through baby powder.
Enviroman liked that - an environmentally friendly pesticide!!!!
This was posted over at Enviroman Says but today a visitor commented that it really worked for her, so I have decided to repost over here, as as well as being environmentally friendly, one can also save money on pesticide.
If you want to read the comment and the original post, it is in the March 2005 archive.
If you make your own sprouts, what do you do with the soak water? Don't just pour them down the drain. Do you know that the carbohydrates left in the soak water that are difficult for us to digest are great nutrients for plants and vegetable. Use it to water your plants. They are great free natural fertilizer.
Do you have items in your storeroom unutilised or underutilised and is cluttering up your house? Join a Freecycle group to help clear clutter, cut waste, help reduce the mountains at your nation's wastedumps, help the environment, help a fellow passenger of spaceship earth, etc. etc. At the time of writing, there are 3,086 communities and 1,661,428 members spread over many nations.
What is freecycle?
The Freecycle Network™ is made up of many individual groups across the globe. It's a grassroots movement of people who are giving (& getting) stuff for free in their own towns. Each local group is run by a local volunteer moderator (them's good people). Membership is free. To sign up, find your community near you from http://freecycle.org. Can't find a group near you? You might want to consider starting one (click on "Start a Group" for instructions).
The Freecycle Network was started in May 2003 to promote waste reduction in Tucson's downtown and help save desert landscape from being taken over by landfills. The Network provides individuals and non-profits an electronic forum to "recycle" unwanted items. One person's trash can truly be another's treasure!
How does it work?
When you want to find a new home for something -- whether it's a chair, a fax machine, piano, or an old door -- you simply send an e-mail offering it to members of your Freecycle group.
Or, maybe you're looking to acquire something yourself. Simply respond to a member's offer, and you just might get it. After that, it's up to the giver to decide who receives the gift and to set up a pickup time for passing on the treasure.
One main rule: Everything posted must be free, legal, and appropriate for all ages.
Non-profit organizations also benefit from The Freecycle Network. Post the item or items you want to give away and a local organization can help you get it to someone in need.
Who can use the freecycle network?
Think globally, recycle locally. The Freecycle Network is open to all communities and to all individuals who want to participate. Freecycle groups are run by local volunteer moderators from across the globe who facilitate each local group - grassroots at its best!
Support them, and you support your children, your grandchildren, your great-grandchildren ..........
Reduce, Reuse and then Recycle ============================== Even with Bristol's new twin bin recycling scheme, a massive 73% of our household waste is destined for Landfill, and much of this waste is excess plastic and packaging. So it makes sense to cut down on the amount of plastic packaging generated in the first place.
By themselves shops will be unwilling to cut down on packaging because consumers have come to expect it. The Council is in a unique position to provide information and encourage consumers and local shops. We want the council to work with local businesses on schemes to cut down on excess packaging and also substitute plastic other material such as cardboard. This will benefit council tax payers by reducing Bristol's landfill tax bill and improve the environment.
Our petition recognises the significant environmental benefits of increasing recycling, but request that Bristol City Council also develops and implements effective measures to reduce and reuse waste. We are therefore requesting that the City Council works with local shops and businesses on practicable schemes:
1 To reduce packaging when selling goods and services and eliminate unnecessary packaging.
2 To promote and supply goods in re-useable, compostable and recyclable packaging.
3 To develop and promote schemes to repair and reuse goods within Bristol.
We acknolwedge the important role supermarkets can play in reducing waste packaging, and therefore we also call upon all supermarkets to work with Bristol City Council in achieving the above objectives.
The closing date for the petition is 2nd September 2005.
Our target of 1000 signatures will send a powerful message to the council.
Interesting. The Singapore Government seemed serious in cutting waste. They have a special website devoted to this. From their website, Cut Waste:
"The Government is determined to continue delivering excellent public services despite increasing fiscal pressures. Do you have an idea of where and how the government can cut waste in public expenditure? Please write to us using the form below..........."
In the past five years, Auckland Zoo has successfully reduced waste to landfill by two-thirds from 15 tonnes a month to five tonnes, and that five tonnes is further squashed in a compacting machine to reduce the amount of room it takes in the landfill. The Zoo has also commissioned a large Tag-G Digester worm farm which will take organic waste from the Zoo's cafes and further reduce the amount of waste going out the gate. The worm farm can hold five tonnes of organic waste, says Auckland Zoo Educator, Cassandra Knight. The waste education programme at the Zoo is called "Poo at the Zoo and You" and teaches students about how the Zoo deals with waste from the animals and from the public.
A TV show, "No Waste Like Home", is helping householders cut wastes. In the first episode August 2005, presenter Penney Poyzer (Queen of Green) managed to reduce a family's household waste by 94% in 2 weeks, reduce food wastage by 60%, heating gas usage by 63% and helped the family saved $753 in 2 weeks. That is quite an achievement.