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Features: Thick paper straws coated with food-grade wax to protect them from liquid. Yes, these are single-use items but if you are in a situation where you need straws and glass or steel straws are not an option (i.e. parties, large gatherings, house guests) this is a far better option than plastic straws, which are typically non-recyclable.
Green Factor: Biodegradable, compostable and made with food-grade soy inks
Bonus: Made in the USA by Aardvark Straws
Find It Here: Amazon
The Great Pacific Garbage Patch is a growing problem in the northern Pacific Ocean and one that could dramatically alter life on our planet within the next 20 years.
I remember the first time I felt it; I was paddling out on my surfboard and noticed a mushy, plastic-like substance sliding through my fingers. That’s what started my obsession with the Great Pacific Garbage Patch, says charity fundraiser and environmentalist Veronica Grey. The patch is located between Hawaii and California in the northern Pacific Ocean, where millions of small bits of plastic have gathered in a vortex of ocean currents known as a gyre.
Fifteen years ago The Patch was the size Texas, but now it’s the size of the continental United States, says Grey, who used her iPhone to shoot the documentary, which features renowned scientists, journalists and environmentalists.
Grey paired her professional skills with her personal passion for the ocean, creating the award-winning documentary Aqua Seafoam Shame, (www.Pacific-TV.com), which spotlights the mess in the ocean that has garnered precious little media attention, she says.
Plastic in the ocean has far-reaching implications that, if not addressed within 20 years, could change life on this planet, she says. To date, 177 species of sea life are known to ingest plastic; other species feed on those creatures, extending the chain of damage.
People EAT the seafood that eats plastic, and the planet gets its rain from the oceans, which are being polluted at an exponential rate, she says. We use significantly more of our planet’s surface as a dump than for growing food; this has to change.
To begin addressing plastics pollution, Grey encourages people to use alternatives:
What: Solar 11-in-1 Battery Charger
Features: This charger uses solar power to re-charge up to 11Â NIMH or NiCad (D, C, AA and AAA) rechargeable batteries.
Green Factor: Rechargeable batteries can be used over and over and using a solar-powered charger is a greener choice than a standard chargerâ€”no electricity is used or required!
Bonus: Living in hurricane country, my family is well-acquainted with the issues that come with being out of power for extended periods of timeâ€”being able to recharge all those batteries we depend on when the power is down (and not likely to come back on for days) is a huge bonus!
Find It Here: Amazon.com (qualifies for free shipping!)
I really love things that smell good but in the past few years I’ve become keenly aware of just how toxic they can be and thus, I was compelled to search Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep cosmetic safety database and compile a list of the worst-scoring fragrances.
This means that based on their ingredients, these fragrances rated the highest in categories relating to cancer, allergies/immunotoxicity and/or developmental & reproductive toxicity—YIKES!
This list isn’t all inclusive of every fragrance out there and it only contains some of the ones that got the highest overall “hazard” scores (9 and 10) .
There are plenty that I didn’t list and many that have only slightly lower hazard scores so yourself a favor and check Skin Deep yourself to see where your scents and cosmetics rank. FYI…my fave scent scored a 6 out of 10 🙁
Make a stylish cell phone holder to stash your cell phone and cord while charging your phone â€” from a LOTION BOTTLE. I love this idea because it keeps those annoying cords out of your way and you’ll be upcycling a plastic container into something useful!
Get the instructions at Make It and Love It