Friday, January 14, 2011

Hemp - One of the Greenest Materials - Outlawed In the US

So many of our politicians claim to want to do things in greener ways.  They boast about green policies and agendas and claim to have green solutions to our nation's needs.  These hypocrites are the same people who have helped to keep one of the greenest materials illegal.  In our country it is illegal to grow hemp, even though it has no recreation drug qualities.  It is widely mistaken for recreational marijuana, which has 3-22% THC content, the active ingredient that gets recreational marijuana users "high".  Hemp has less that 0.3% THC content, which is a negligible amount and not enough to cause any effects.

We cut down trees that have grown for decades to make paper that doesn't last as long as paper made from hemp, which can grow in three months.  (The Declaration of Independence was written on hemp paper.)  Hemp does not require the use of pesticides, herbicides and other harmful chemicals used to grow other crops, and makes for a great rotational crop for soybean, corn and other fields.  Other uses of hemp include clothing, food, biofuel, medicines, rope, insulation, biodegradable plastics, animal feed, bedding, construction materials, oils, art supplies, cosmetics, paints, and way too many more to list.

It is completely absurd that the US does not allow hemp to be grown on our soil.  Politicians who claim to have green policies are nothing short of stupid when they sit around doing nothing to get hemp back into production.  Lobbyists from industries who make the above mentioned products push to keep hemp illegal.  There is no valid reason to keep up this nonsense.

Over the next month I am going to be posting a series of articles that discuss hemp, hemp uses, hemp legislation, and all of the hypocrisy surrounding it.  I'm not asking you to take my word for all this.  DO SOME RESEARCH YOURSELF.  Then contact your governmental representatives and let them know how ridiculous this whole situation is.  We should not stand for such stupid laws and we need to demand accountability from legislators who get elected by running on green platforms and then don't do anything about this!

I do not smoke marijuana.   This isn't about legalizing recreational marijuana, although I don't think it would be a bad idea to reform the way we waste money on fighting a fight that hasn't changed no matter how many trillions of dollars we throw at it.  This is about environmental responsibility.

Feel free to share your opinions below.

Sunday, August 8, 2010

Greenest Way To Wash Your Car Or Other Vehicles

Take it to the wash!
The greenest way to wash your car is to take it to a car wash.  It's much better for the environment than doing it at home, unless you are just using water to clean your vehicle.  Car washes recycle the water used for washing cars.  The waste water is cleaned and filtered.  If you wash your car at home the chemicals wind up either in your yard or garden or they end up getting washed down the sewer, which leads to creeks, rivers, lakes, ponds, or oceans.  These chemicals are not good for wildlife!  Next time you need your vehicle washed plan it on the way to or from somewhere else, don't make a special trip, and take it to the car wash!

**image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Fairmont Hotels Save Energy, Costs, and Environment | The Energy Collective

Fairmont Hotels Save Energy, Costs, and Environment | The Energy Collective

Saturday, August 7, 2010

Is Green Air Travel Possible?

green airline
Traveling by air is not green yet.
NO, not right now. There are no such things as sustainable airlines, contrary to what some might say. It's just not possible with technology right now. There are ways to reduce your impact from air travel, but it's not possible to do both fly and leave no footprint.

Some things you can do to reduce your impact are to research airlines and their standards and to only book non-stop fights as every take off and landing produce more carbon than regular flying. Research individual airlines' stats on emissions and percentage of seats filled to find the one that is most efficient with the energy they use. Continental has been listed in several places as the greenest airline, however, I haven't done the research myself.
green train travel
Trains are one of the greenest ways to travel!

If at all possible, take a train instead! Trains are much more efficient than airlines and autos, and also their ticket prices are very reasonable. Check out local rail travel options.

Friday, August 6, 2010

Finally Back Online With A New Green Laptop

After a nearly 3 month hiatus I am finally back online.  My old computer bit the dust and since it's summer I've been so busy outdoors that I forget about the internet!  I just bought a new Compaq computer.  One of the main reasons for choosing it was the price but it came with an added bonus, it was voted the greenest computer by Newsweek in 2009.  It even has a sticker:

Watch out, blogosphere, I'm back greening things here and there and everywhere!

Saturday, June 26, 2010

How To Recycle Old Fishing Line

Fishing line can be a mess to get caught in, and it is disastrous to wildlife.   Many states are putting collection boxes for old fishing line near popular fishing areas.  If you don't live in a state that does this, you can still recycle your old fishing line.  Berkley's conservation department will recycle fishing line and turn it into fish habitat structures.  Send your old fishing line to the address below:

Berkley Recycling
1900 18th Street
Spirit Lake, IA 51360

**image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons

Green Shipping and Mailing

Shipping items is taxing on the environment, but there are ways to reduce your impact on the environment when sending things to friends, family, and customers. Start by recycling a box. Most of us have boxes laying around. If it has printing or labels on it, flip it inside out and re-tape it. Write the address right on the package, there is no need to use a label. For delicate items, use newspaper as a cushion instead of styrofoam packing peanuts (it's much better for the environment). Encourage the recipient to recycle the box and packaging.

When you receive a package, make sure to recycle the box and all packaging materials. If your package included styrofoam packaging peanuts you can take them to a pack and ship store to be reused.

When taking a trip to the post office, consider walking or biking.

**image courtesy of Flickr Creative Commons