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"If I had influence with the good fairy who is supposed to preside over the christening of all children, I should ask that her gift to each child in the world be a sense of wonder so indestructible that it would last throughout life." Rachel Carson





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Friday, May 14, 2010

Biodegradable and compostable picnic disposables

credit: Design*Sponge

We've got a great BBQ weekend coming up in the northeast. Planning a picnic in the park or beach is one of my favorite warm weather activities, but I am always faced with the dilemma of having to use disposable plates, cups and silverware which can lead to a mountain of trash. For some great solutions and the latest on new biodegradable one-use picnic supplies, check out this great post from Design*Sponge.

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Happy Birthday Earth Day and Green Up Day!


Happy Earth Day!! Not only is today is the 40th anniversary of Earth Day, it's also the 40th anniversary of Green Up Day in Vermont. Green Up Day takes place on the first Saturday in May across the state of Vermont. Kids and adults alike gather in their communities to clean up liter. If you have ever visited Vermont, you will notice right away the impact this one day of action has. Not only do the roads, sidewalks, streams and trails get a facelift, but new generations learn the importance of keeping our environment clean. As a kid, I participated in Green Up Day with my classmates every year. I learned the importance not only of putting trash in the garbage can, but also the how important it is to recycle and to reduce the amount of trash we create. While scanning the ground, bushes and ravines for trash, I began to notice how our garbage impacts the habitats of small creatures in my community. Suddenly one day of action turned into a year-long effort to reduce trash, recycle and protect the natural habitats in my town.

If you live in Vermont, you can participate in Green Up Day on Saturday, May 1st. If you live elsewhere in the country or world, why not start your own Green Up Day? All you have to do is gather a friend or two, a parent or teacher and get greening!

Wednesday, April 14, 2010

Eco Boys and Girls Earth Day event!

With Earth Day right around the corner, there are plenty of great opportunities to get involved and learn more about the protecting the environment. On Saturday April 24th there will be a great event at the Liberty Science Center in Jersey City, NJ that you might want to check out if you are in the area. Fashion designer, former model, artist and Eco-Pioneer Maria Snyder will be introducing her latest project, Eco Boys and GirlsTM with a two hour fun filled adventure and scavenger hunt for children. The event will introduce the children to Ernie Earth©, Lulu Love©, Patsy Peace©, Ray Recycle© and Sammy Sun© who will bring messages of love, peace and environmental awareness. To learn more, click here.

Earth Day Message from the President

Earth Day is coming up April 22!

Sunday, February 28, 2010

Beware the dust bunnies!


Those balls of dust living under your bed aren't just unsightly, they can be toxic, too! Chemicals from around your home and from the outdoors wind up in your indoor dust when they resettle from home products and come in our your shoes and through windows and doors. Dust is made up of all sorts of yucky stuff, like human hair and skin, pet dander, fungal spores, tiny particles and fibers. To make those dust bunnies even grosser, studies have found that 66 different endocrine disrupting compounds have been found in house dust. The worst among these are fire retardants, phthalates, and home use pesticides. EEK!!! Sounds pretty awful right? They are indeed--when you are exposed to toxic chemicals, even low doses, your health can be compromised. This is especially of concern for small children, who often play on the floor and put objects in their mouths. Small amounts of PBDE's (fire retardant) can cause damage to the reproductive system, deficits in motor skills, learning, memory and hearing as well as behavioral changes.

So where do these toxic chemicals come from and how do the end up in a dust ball under your furniture? Products such as furniture, electronics, shoes, plastics, fabrics and food shed chemicals over time. Outdoor pollutants travel inside on your shoes or through a cracked window.

What you can do:

-Vacuum regularly with a vacuum that has a HEPA filter to trap small particles. Don't forget to vacuum upholstered furniture and under those couch cushions!

-Wet mop uncarpeted floors regularly.

-Buy wooden furniture or furniture filled with cotton, down, wool or polyester as it is less likely to contain PBDE's.

-Wipe furniture with a microfiber cloth or a wet cotton cloth to get those tiny particles. Skip the sprays and wipes, they only add more chemicals to your home.

-Keep electronic equipment dust free by wiping with a damp cloth.

-Change the filters frequently on your forced air heating or cooling system.

For more information on toxic dust and how to protect yourself and your family from other toxins, visit the Environmental Working Group website.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Wisdom of the Wild


Anybody that has ever had a pet understands that there is a sacred bond between human beings and animals. Although we may think of ourselves as the most intelligent creatures on Earth, there is much we can learn from from the animal kingdom. Wisdom of the Wild is a terrific PBS documentary that sheds some light on our remarkable connection with our fellow creatures, including what they can teach us about the world, and about ourselves.

Click here to view the full documentary: Video: Full Episode - Wisdom of the Wild | Nature