February 13, 2012

Surfrider Partners with Envirosax to Support Rise Above Plastics

I love Envirosax and I love Surfrider! Their partnership is perfect in promoting both reusable shopping bags, as wells as how plastic bags are harming marine life.

Sales of the limited edition Envirosax Surfrider Reusable Bags 3pk Set go to support Surfrider's Rise Above Plastics campaign.

According to a study conducted by the United Nations, an estimated 100,000 marine mammals and up to one million sea birds die every year after ingesting or being tangled in plastic marine litter. With this new collection, Envirosax and Surfrider Foundation hope to raise awareness about the issue of single-use plastics in our marine environments.

"Our oceans, lakes and waterways are beautiful elements of nature we want our children and grandchildren to enjoy," said Envirosax CEO Belinda Coker. "We hope to inspire everyone to reuse. One tiny change is like a drop of water into a pond - it has the power of creating a big ripple effect. We hope that all of the small changes people make by using our bags will make a huge impact in order to preserve and protect our environment."

"The Surfrider Foundation is thrilled to work with Envirosax to bring more attention to the harms single-use plastics have on marine life," said Steve Blank, Surfrider Foundation's Director of Development. "The bags are fun, stylish and will turn heads with amazing art from our supporters Ned Evans, Robb Havassy and Melinda Morey."

I really like the artwork on these bags, and I appreciate that 50 cents from each purchase supports a very worthy cause. Furthermore, my experience with Envirosax is they hold up very well over time, and I love how the snap closure makes these bags compact and thus easily kept in a purse or backpack ensuring you always have a reusable bag handy.

Disclosure: The products described above were sent to us as free samples. Prior assurances as to the nature of the reviews, whether positive or negative, were not given. No financial payments were accepted in exchange for the reviews. The reviews reflect our honest, authentic opinions.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 2, 2011

Flat Screen TV Energy Consumption Declines 60%!

Three years ago, we reported on how the trend towards flat screen TVs were harming our environment. Now there's some good news when it comes to television watching. Flat screen TVs are more efficient and impressively reducing energy consumption. EcoFriend reports:

Basing it on a data compiled on 1800 models of TV sets, Sust-it, the UK energy efficiency site, reports that energy usage in flat screen TV sets has shown an impressive 60 percent decline since 2006. Ross Llamas, the founder of Sust-it, says this improvement is from the use of LEDs to backlight the TV. LCD panel TVs have largely replaced Plasma displays that look to be on the verge of being phased out. The Sust-it study is confirmed by the magazine Which?. The editor, Martin Hocking says that his own studies show a 40-inch flat screen TV, that consumed 300 watts 3 years ago, now consumes only 70 watts. Since 2009, LED TVs have taken a 20 percent share of the 9.5 million UK flat TV market. As LED TVs consume less power than LCDs, the change to LEDs is good for reduced power consumption.

Photo:  Attribution Some rights reserved by AngryJulieMonday
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

February 9, 2011

HOT: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth

If you are a parent, then your children are part of what author Mark Hertsgaard dubs "Generation Hot". After becoming a father, Hertsgaard realized climate change had arrived a century earlier than predicted. In Hot: Living Through the Next Fifty Years on Earth, Herstgaard writes on climate change with some optimism in this personal book.

Q: Is that why you say your daughter belongs to what you call Generation Hot?

A: Not only my daughter. Every child on earth born after June 23, 1988, belongs to Generation Hot. Generation Hot includes some two billion young people, all of whom have grown up under global warming and are fated to spend the rest of their lives confronting its mounting impacts.

I date Generation Hot to June 23, 1988, because that's the day humanity was put on notice that greenhouse gas emissions were raising temperatures on this planet. The warning came from NASA scientist James Hansen's testimony to the United States Senate and, crucially, the decision by the New York Times to print the news on page 1, which made global warming a household phrase in news bureaus, living rooms, and government offices the world over.

Unfortunately, Hansen's and countless subsequent warnings by others went unheeded. The U.S. government, under Republican as well as Democratic leadership, listened as much to corporate-funded deniers of climate change as it did to actual scientists. So instead of shifting to greener technologies, U.S. emissions have soared over the past twenty years. That, in turn, helped accelerate global warming to where it triggered outright climate change. And as David King explained, once climate change gets triggered, it can't be turned off quickly.

As a result, my daughter and the other two billion young people of Generation Hot are destined to live with rising temperatures and stronger climate impacts for the rest of their lives. Which is why our new mantra in fighting climate change has to be "Avoid the unmanageable and manage the unavoidable." On the one hand, we must redouble our efforts to slash greenhouse gas emissions and stop global warming before it unleashes an unmanageable amount of climate change. On the other hand, we have to put in place better defenses against sea level rise, more effective water conservation systems, and many other measures to manage the climate change that is already unavoidable. In short, we have to live through global warming even as we strive to stop it.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 12, 2010

Putamayo Presents Yoga: Music That's Not Just for Asanas

Putumayo Presents Yoga is a musical CD filled with tunes from around the world. Although I am not a big fan of music during my yoga practice, these soothing tunes are comforting to play anytime.

Yoga is Putumayo's first CD release featuring songs selected to accompany yoga practice and serve as a relaxing soundtrack for daily life. Rooted in ancient Hindu, Buddhist and Jain traditions, the practice of yoga has evolved over the past 5,000 years. Adopted by millions of people around the world, yoga provides a vehicle for greater health and spiritual awareness. Music has long had a close relationship with yoga, particularly in the Bhakti tradition, which incorporates musical chants into its practice. Yoga features renowned musicians from around the world. British-born, South Indian artist Susheela Raman duets with Kenyan singer Ayub Ogada on the harmonious "O Rama." Krishna Das, who is the best-known US performer of traditional Indian kirtan-style music, demonstrates call-and-response chanting on "Hanuman Baba (Dub Farm Remix)." Costa Rican group Amounsulu create a serene atmosphere by blending sitars and glass bottles on the song "El Bosque Eterno de los Niños (Children's Eternal Rainforest)."

Many people find music during their yoga practice helps them focus their breath and clear the mind. This CD is a nice collection to accompany your asanas and vinyasa; however, I simply enjoy listening to it while I write and clean.  I think it would be too relaxing for driving; it might put me to sleep.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 10, 2010

The No-Nonsense Guild to Popular Wines Ranks Vintages by Good, Better, Best

Good, Better, Best Wines: A No-Nonsense Guide to Popular Wines is an easy reference tool for wine drinkers. Ranking commonly found vintages by from good to best, this handy little book makes buying wine easy.

The first buying guide to focus exclusively on the best-selling wines in North America that you can find anywhere!

When it comes to wine, your "wants" are pretty simple: a good wine, at a price you can afford, that's stocked at your local wine shop or supermarket. Good Better Best Wines gives you just that. It reveals in plain English, the good, better, and best wines available for the dollars you're willing to spend--up to $15--along with photos of clearly labeled bottles to make wine shopping easier.

And because Good Better Best Wines is the first book to rank the best-selling wines in North America--think names like Beringer, Kendall-Jackson, and Woodbridge--you bet they'll be stocked at your local store

Each variety is explained before ranking the popular wineries that make them. Since I only drink locally-grown wine from organic grapes, none of my regular brands are featured.  I can't really comment on whether or not I agree with the author's findings, but I do think a locavore wine diet is best.

Disclosure: I was sent free samples of these products to review. No prior assurances were given as to whether the review be positive or negative.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

October 12, 2009

Imperial Eco-Tours: Stars Wars-The Environmentalists Version Parodies the Green Movement

Via: Shea Gunther's blog on Mother Nature Network
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

September 3, 2009

Ginormous Hand Knit Bunny Took Five Years to Complete

Ok, this may be a little off topic for Really Natural, but check out this ginormous knit bunny! Knit by four artists over five years, this art installation is located in the Italian Alps (and it makes me smile). The artists state:

behind a hill, as if knitted by giant grandmothers, lies this vast rabbit, to make you feel as small as a daisy.

I hope they used organic or at least natural fiber yarn. I wonder how it will hold up to the the mountain weather.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 26, 2009

Sustainable, Handmade, Wooden Retro Radio

Listen to your tunes sustainably with this retro wooden radio and bamboo iPod dock.

Most radios don't qualify as decor accents: ours does. Every detail of its design, from sustainably harvested wood to round knobs, merges nostalgia with contemporary elan to please the ear as well as the eye.
Handmade by artisans in Indonesia, the radio also contains two shortwave bands and an iPod jack.  I've not personally tried one of these radios, but I think they look really cool. 
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

January 2, 2009

Bookswim: Netflix for Readers

bookswim.jpg I hate to buy books, as once they are read, they sit on a shelf or get passed around. It seems like a waste of money.  I live too far from the library to make use of it. BookSwim offers the perfect solution: it's like Netflix for readers.
BookSwim is the first online book rental library service lending you paperbacks and hardcovers, Netflix®-style, directly to your house, without the need to purchase! Whether it's new releases, bestsellers, or classics, we have something for everyone, with free shipping both ways! Read your books as long as you want -- no late fees! Even choose to purchase and keep the titles you love!
Plans start at $9.95 a month.  Books are shipped in 100% recycled plastic bags. By using BookSwim, you will reduce the amount of trees that are cut down to produce books (BookSwim estimates that 20 million trees are cut down every year for American book production!)
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 21, 2008

Your Flat-Screen TV is Worse for the Environment than a Coal Burning Power Plant

092506wiremold.1.jpg Nitrogen trifluoride (NF3) has been deemed the "missing greenhouse gas", because it is not covered by the Kyoto Protocol, yet it is 17,000 times stronger than carbon dioxide! NF3 used to be produced in tiny amounts, but the boom in flat-screen TVs has changed that. According to the Guardian:
Manufacturers use a greenhouse gas called nitrogen trifluoride to make the televisions, and as the sets have become more popular, annual production of the gas has risen to about 4,000 tonnes...Writing in the journal Geophysical Research Letters, Prather and a colleague, Juno Hsu, state that this year's production of the gas is equivalent to 67m tonnes of carbon dioxide, meaning it has "a potential greenhouse impact larger than that of the industrialised nations' emissions of PFCs or SF6, or even that of the world's largest coal-fired power plants".
Now, I have another good reason to convince my hubby we should hang on to our old TV besides the cost of a flat-screen.  Until our TV breaks, there is no reason to upgrade.
 Via: The Guardian and The Grist
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

July 18, 2008

Energy Efficient and Environmentally Friendly iPod Speakers


Given our earlier post this week on not so natural iPod speakers, we thought we'd find some iPod speakers that were a bit more in line with our taste. The Vers 2x hits the mark with a casing crafted out of wood (either cherry, bamboo or walnut), and the wood comes only from plantation forests. The Vers 2x is also RoHS compliant, which means the electronics are free from hazardous components like lead, cadmium, mercury, hexavalent chromium, polybrominated biphenyl (PBB) and polybrominated diphenyl ether (PBDE) flame retardants.

The Vers 2x uses energy efficient components, such as a low-draw amplifier which not only helps your power bill, but will also help reduce your carbon footprint. The whole system is rated at 36 watts, and also comes in 100% recycled packaging.

Via MetaEfficient Reviews at VERS Audio Hand Crafted High End Wood Sound System Apple iPod Dock Speakers

Blogpire Productions at Permalink social bookmarking

July 15, 2008

mStation Stereo Orb - Green Ball Plays Music


What's not to like in a green little eco-sphere of stereo madness? Well for one this product isn't all that natural, but it does indeed bring home the green eco-sphere point when listening to music. Perhaps you might get this instead of some other iPod stereo dock just for that reason, or maybe just because it looks really cool.

How does it work? You just put the music on your iPod, dock it onto the Orb and then you can use the 10 key remote to adjust volume, bass, and treble levels. The mStation Stereo Orb has a built in subwoofer to pump out a nice sound. This is a perfect set up for listening to music in the kitchen, or even in the backyard while gardening.

Via Gizmos for Geeks at mStation Stereo Orb

Blogpire Productions at Permalink social bookmarking

April 14, 2008

Radiant City: A Look at the Late Suburan Age

Radiant City is a new documentary about the cookie cutter life that has emerged from suburban sprawl in North America. Farm land is being converted into massive enclaves of identical homes, where people live closely to their neighbors but in complete isolation as a community. The layout of suburbia requires dependence upon cars, as families shuttle children around and drive to big box stores. Suburbs create monocultures that will not be supported as the energy crisis manifests.

I grew up in a suburb, as my parents purchased a new home when I was a toddler. The difference between my suburb and the one featured in Radiant City is that we could walk to our school, church, grocery store, bank, post office, etc. We did know our neighbors and block parties occurred every summer. Now, this sense of community has been lost in my suburb, as the children have grown up and left the neighborhood and schools have closed. This is the fate typical of "communities" in the Late Suburban Age. It is not a sustainable model for communal life.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

July 5, 2007

Live Earth Greeting Card from Barefoot Books

Getting excited for Live Earth? Want to tell your friends about it?

The folks at Barefoot Books have developed a free e-card so you can do just that. The card includes content from the new book Whole World and includes eco-tips for making the world greener. A percentage of book sales benefits global conservation.

Get the e-card. Buy Whole World.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

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