Tuesday, December 10, 2013

Apology and this week's tip: Dumpster Adventures

I'm not blogging much lately due to certain matters going on in my life. Sorry, I know this is supposed to be a weekly post but life happens....

Anyway, here's this week's tip. This applies if you live in a place where there's a central dumpster where people dump their garbage: When you take out the garbage, keep your eyes open for things that might not really be garbage but perhaps someone was just trying to get rid of the item without it occurring to them that maybe someone else could use it. If you find something useful, go ahead and take it home! For example, yesterday I "rescued" a chair that turned out to be still in decent condition, and comfortable, too. I recommend cleaning such finds before using them, as you don't know where they've been....If you find something that could be useful for someone but not you, you can "rescue" it anyway and donate it to Goodwill or another organization of your preference that takes such things. (Another idea is to try putting it up for sale, say on Craigslist or eBay, but keep in mind that you can't always be confident that you can accurately describe the condition of the item and again, you have no idea where it's been....) That way you can help the environment while simultaneously helping an organization and also someone who could use the item in question! :)

If you see that there's an ongoing problem of people leaving perfectly good items, you might want to call the problem to the attention of your building/apartment complex manager (or whoever else is in charge). I called mine today and left a message with the following ideas: 1. They could write a notice so people are aware that there's a Goodwill nearby. (That applies to my situation; you could customize this for your own situation.) Have them point out that other people might be able to make use of the item, even if the current owner is done with it. 2. They could designate a place, apart from the dumpster(s), where people could leave stuff they don't want that's still good, and people could come and take what they want. I didn't get a response yet but at least I tried.

Thursday, March 14, 2013

1.3 billion chickens

Take two seconds to take action!

I received the following email from Environment America:

1.3 billion chickens. 62 million hogs. 18 million head of cattle. Those are just some of the animals living in factory farms in the U.S. And these animals create more waste each year than the top 100 American cities combined.
Help us clean up factory farms.
"Ticking time bombs of manure" -- that’s the description Karen Hudson, a resident of Elmwood, Illinois, gave to factory farms when one spewed two million tons of raw, toxic manure near her home after a heavy rain.
This waste is revolting, and contaminates waterways nationwide -- but the Obama administration has the authority to clean up these farms right now. 
Sign our petition to President Obama to clean up these dirty operations today.
The simple truth is that millions of gallons of manure, microbes and antibiotics shouldn't be kept in open pits, just one heavy rainstorm away from contaminating nearby waterways.
Tell President Obama to clean up factory farms today to protect our waters tomorrow.
Margie Alt
Executive Director

Note from me: Apologies for neglecting this blog. It's called "Environmental Tip of the Week" which implies I should be writing here weekly. I will try to do so, going forward.