Wednesday, September 17, 2014

Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) - ChloroFluoroCarbons

Welcome to Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW)!

Wondering how to live greener? You've come to the right place. Each week we challenge ourselves to try a new task ... or "amp up" something we're already doing. We raise our awareness, learn from each other and develop Eco-friendly skills which will improve our lives and protect our planet. Doing so together gives us power ... the power to Change The World!

If this is your first visit, please click HERE for information and a complete list of all the challenges we've taken on so far.

This post contains great information and I encourage you to read through it at your leisure ... however, if you are short on time, you might find the following quick links helpful:


Last week we joined forces against climate change. We all know the problems associated with climate change but I'm guessing that not everyone knows that we can battle it by living green. So, we "took to the streets" and tried to encourage others to join our fight. It's not always easy. I spoke to a grocery store employee about wrapping food in plastic. While he acknowledged that it is good to be environmental, he also said that if we took every warning to heart, we'd do nothing and eat nothing. He went on to suggest that we not hate those who love plastic. Wow! While that particular conversation wasn't exactly optimistic, I still hope that it plants a seed in his mind which may, one day, blossom into positive action.

The Honor Society are those people who help us spread the "green" word by writing an article about our challenges and/or leaving pertinent comments.

I tweeted about several of your articles and my tweets were picked up in this edition of the Shopping Charity. Was your article included?

Argentum Vulgaris is banging his head against a brick wall in Change the World Wednesday – 10 Sep. Even so, he's reaching out to non-greenies in an attempt to encourage them to join the fight. Did you know that he writes several blogs? Yep, and he's using them all to spread the word. He also discusses another way to elicit change ... the political system (could Brazil become the greenest country on the planet?). It's an informative post! Check it out!

Lois stopped by and left this comment: "If I had to give one piece of advice to someone just starting to consider climate change I would tell them to start with things that save them the most money, switch out cleaning products for vinegar and baking soda, unplug appliances, switch light bulbs to LED and as they see savings invest it into the bigger items such as insulation on their homes." Great advice, Lois!

Laurel shared a couple of fabulous articles with us: 100 Things You Can Do Every Day to Help the Earth: The First 10: Water and Water Conservation and 100 Things You Can Do to Help the Earth: Ten More In The Home. Great tips! Thanks, Laurel!

La Alicia posted Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) and encouraged her readers to join us. Thanks, Alicia!

Deborah accepted our challenge. She said, "Hi Cyndi, Thank you for sharing this week's CTWW Challenge with us at the Healthy, Happy, Green and Natural Party Blog Hop. I appreciate it! Re: this week's CTWW Challenge:The earth is warming. The evidence is clear. Climate change is the most catastrophic issue impacting our lives and the future of our planet. I am sharing three blog posts related to climate change and simple green actions we can take to help reduce our environmental impact. Climate Change 2104: Impacts, Adaptation, Vulnerability: Findings from the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Control (IPCC) Report, Global Warming, Climate Change and Sea Level Rise: 8 YouTube Videos You Should Watch Now, and The Green 18: Quick and Easy Tips for Living Green Every Day." Wonderful posts, Deborah!

Nicki Woo heard our battle cry and shared this, "What a great post! I always love hearing how people take their own particular talents and make the world a better place. Sometimes I think people dont get involved because they think its not their thing. But truly, we all have a special way in which we can give back and help conserve our earth. I'm going to try and use my pulp from my juicer in casseroles like one of your readers suggested. Right now, I often add it to applesauce and my kids gobble it up, but I'm sure I could get more inventive:) Thanks so much for all you do! I appreciate you!!! And Oh! I almost forgot. . . .this week to live a greener life. . . .I transformed a ruined rug into a "new" rug with dye paint, rather than buying a new one and chucking out the old:) REUSE: How to spray paint your rug." Very clever reuse, Nicki!

Alica dropped by. She shared this, "The first thing I would tell someone who is concerned about climate change is to reduce or cut out meat completely in their diet. The United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization reported that meat causes more greenhouse gases into the atmosphere than either transportation or industry!! They stated that producing a half pound hamburger for someones lunch releases as much greenhouse gas into the atmosphere as driving a 3,000 pound car 10 miles! The billions of chicken, turkeys, pigs and cows who are crammed into factory farms each year in the U.S. produce enormous amounts of methane gas. Scientist report that every pound of methane is more than 20 times as effective as carbon dioxide is at trapping heat in our atmosphere.The EPA has shown that animal agriculture is the single largest source of methane emissions in the U.S. The World Watch Institute said that going Vegan is one of the most effective ways to fight global warming. A staggering 51% or more of global- greenhouse gas emissions are caused by animal agriculture! So just think how eating one non meat meal once a week could make a tremendous difference. I think most people find that it is easier to do than they thought. Peta even offers a FREE Vegan starter kit. that has recipes tips and videos. http://www.peta.org/living/food/free-vegan-starter-kit/. I challenge everyone who eats meat and dairy to give it up for just one day this week, It will be a small but very effective way to help combat global warming." Fabulous challenge, Alicia!

CelloMom joined our army. She shared this, " Wow, great suggestions so far! There are a lot of places where we can cut our carbon footprint; it doesn't matter where you start, it's more important *that* you start cutting. I have a post with a "menu" of options on where to reduce your household carbon emissions. Apart from your individual efforts at home, I think it's also important to let your voice be heard. Despite the money swirling around politics, at the end of the day politicians still need your vote. So let them know where you want them to stand on climate change. Citizens Climate Lobby can help you write letters. And of course, you can participate in a Climate March near you! Coming up, 20-21 September."

Mary came by and shared this, "Good idea! It's often forgotten that it makes a big difference to have other people join too since our changes add up! Great ideas are to encourage schools or neighborhoods to do community recycling! Once that's started, more and more will change!" Love the idea of community recycling, Mary!

Our Twitter friends joined the conversation and shared the following:

From @GiveTreeGifts
- What is climate change? ow.ly/BkxIY #CTWW
- A Call to Arms: An Invitation to Demand Action on Climate Change ow.ly/BkxUS #CTWW
- Climate Change Connection ow.ly/Bkyed #CTWW
- WWF Canada - Climate & Energy ow.ly/BkyyI #CTWW

From @smallftprints
- What can small cities do to fight climate change? grist.org/climate-energy… via @grist #CTWW
- 8 Easy Ways to Teach Kids About Saving Energy http://www.greenworld365.com/easy-ways-to-teach-kids-about-saving-energy-at-home/ #CTWW

From @SuppressThis
- Watering Lawns in the Desert: What Las Vegas Can Tell Us About Climate Change (and Ourselves) wp.me/p2llp1-pW

The #CTWW Gang are those folks who tweet our challenges using the hashtag #CTWW. If you're a Twitter member, I recommend following them ... they share great things. Let's meet them:

@2kidsandacoupon @89linz @_topstories_
@allcollegeplan @allnaturalkatie @artbysandra
@biggreenpen @blackfriarsgdns @bstoneblog
@bsustainable2da @cannyhighlander @cellomomoncars
@cereusart @chuecaguia @cjrthemamiblog
@cochranesustain @collegegogreen @debsmikdav1
@factorydpromos @foggybottomgal @forloveofadog
@freshcleanersaz @generaccion_dtt @ginavalley
@givetreegifts @greenglobaltrvl @groovygreenlivi
@gyicc @herbgir1972 @kaitlingarder
@kayelleallen @kirklander61 @kkallen_author
@laalicia @ladyjcmuses @laurelhounslow
@lisadliguori @marbaird @marjoriemcatee
@merlyn43 @mimibarbour @mlkstudios
@mutti1963 @nosco23 @organicrugs
@p2pnyc @paschamo @rckweddings
@realityarts @respiro @robinjfarr
@romerojewelers @ruralmoms @sfcouncil
@shoppingcharity @spafloating @suppressthis
@theworld4realz @treesgroup @turningclockbac
@urban_mining @voiceboksmedia @wasteeguru
@wastejobs @whopaysthepiper

My Final Thoughts:

Some people, even experts on the subject, suggest that there is no "cure" for climate change. Even if it's true, we've got to try. After all, the alternative isn't pretty. We'll have a better chance at success if everyone joins the effort. So I ask each of you to continue the battle and to encourage others to join the fight to save our planet!

Thanks, everyone! If you wrote an article, I Stumbled, Tweeted, Facebooked and posted it on Google +. You can help spread the "green" word by using the share features located below this post.

This Week's Challenge:

Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) - ChloroFluoroCarbons
Old aerosol cans may
contain ChloroFluoroCarbons
I found some good news this week. According to a U.N. study, the damaged ozone layer is showing its first sign of recovery after years of dangerous depletion. WhooHoo!

ChloroFluoroCarbons (CFCs), responsible for damage to the ozone layer, have been banned (for the most part). They were most commonly used in refrigerants, blowing agents, propellants in medicinal applications (like asthma inhalers), and degreasing solvents. Other names for CFCs are Puron, Freon, and Halon. Older refrigerators, A/C units, cars, and fire extinguishers probably contain them. They may still be used in mold release agents and foam products.

Here's your challenge ...


This week, let's deal with any ozone-depleting chemicals in our lives. Here are some steps to take:
  • Check labels and avoid any solvents, cleaning supplies, foams, etc. which contain CFCs (in addition to the common names mentioned above, they might be found on the label as methane, ethane, Trichlorotrifluoroethane).
  • Check storage areas for old aerosol cans, fire extinguishers, or air conditioning units and dispose of them properly (call your hazardous waste disposal department for information on the best way to dispose of them).
  • Does your refrigerator or air conditioner need repair? Ensure that technicians recover and recycle the old CFCs so they are not released into the atmosphere.
  • Have your vehicle's air conditioning unit checked regularly for leaks.
  • Replace halon fire extinguishers with alternatives (e.g. carbon dioxide or foam).
  • If you use an inhaler for asthma or chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), check with your doctor or pharmacist to ensure that it does not contain CFCs. Inhalers with CFCs are being phased out but they are still around so ask.

Are you prepared to help the ozone recover? I know that you are!

Until next time ...

WE'RE CHANGING THE WORLD ... ONE CHALLENGE AT A TIME!





Monday, September 15, 2014

Scott Naturals® Tube-Free - Review and #Giveaway

Scott Naturals® Tube-Free - Review and Giveaway
An estimated 17 billion cardboard
tubes are thrown away each year
What do you do with toilet paper tubes?

Search the Internet and you'll find a host of creative uses for them. I, myself, have reused them as seed starters, composted them, and recycled them.

Keeping them out of a landfill is great but that's just one half of the equation. The other half involves the manufacturing process. As with any product, tubes require resources and energy. If a company doesn't make their own tubes, then packaging and transportation are also added to the environmental cost. And, of course, not everyone finds a use for them ... billions end up in landfills each year.

Toilet paper has been married to the cardboard tube for more than 100 years. What if we eliminated the tube? Radical thought, right? Well, guess what ... Scott Naturals® has done exactly that!

Scott Naturals® Tube-Free - Review and Giveaway
Scott Naturals® Tube-Free
I was invited to try Scott Naturals® Tube-Free toilet paper.

As with all the products that I review, I asked questions. I wanted to know if the toilet paper is made with recycled content and how the product is packaged. I also wanted to know about the company's environmental policies.

I learned that Scott Naturals® Tube-Free toilet paper is the only major brand that is Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) certified. The FSC has confirmed that this product has been sourced in an environmentally-friendly, socially responsible and economically viable manner.

The company tried adding recycled content to the product but found that the quality and softness was compromised. They are currently researching alternative fibers for potential use in the future.

According to my company contact, "The Scott Naturals® Tube-Free bath tissue packaging contains 40% recycled fibers and 20% recycled content in packaging."

She further stated, "As a company, Kimberly Clark is focused on sustainability. 100 percent of its fiber is sourced from certified suppliers and the total amount of fiber used has been reduced by 24 percent through implementing progressive fiber policies and goals. Kimberly Clark also achieved a 26 percent reduction in manufacturing water use since 2010 and managed to divert 80 percent of manufacturing waste from landfills, both by helping users of its products identify alternative solutions and by finding opportunities to reduce waste in our manufacturing process."

I wanted to know more because paper involves trees which are vital to our environment. So I dug a little deeper.

At one time, Kimberly Clark's environmental track record wasn't great. A grassroots student activist campaign against the company opened their eyes and they made some serious changes in the way they conducted their business. They looked for ways to promote forest conservation and responsible forest management. One of their goals was to purchase 100% of wood fiber from suppliers that gain independent sustainability certification from the FSC. Today, they have completely achieved that goal and continue to search for ways to protect the planet and natural resources. They have won several sustainability awards (find the list HERE).

They took the public's concerns about the environment seriously and created what is, today, an environmentally responsible company.

Did I like the product? Read on ...

Scott Naturals® Tube-Free - Review and Giveaway
No cardboard tube in this tissue!
The roll holds 400 unscented one-ply sheets. Typically, one-ply sheets are thin and flimsy. Not so with this paper! In fact, before reading the package, I was sure that it was two-ply ... it is thick and sturdy.

My toilet-paper rod slips easily through the roll's opening. And at the end of the roll, the final sheet slips easily off the holder.

The paper is appropriate for use in septic tanks.

Truthfully, there's nothing "not to love" about this paper! And, there's everything to love about reducing waste!

Would you like to try some for yourself? How about a giveaway?

Scott Naturals® Tube-Free Giveaway


The generous folks at Scott have graciously agreed to sponsor a worldwide giveaway. What's up for grabs? One Eco-friendly bathroom makeover kit, including Scott Naturals Tube-Free toilet paper, natural bathroom cleaner, natural bar soap and CFL light bulbs. WhooHoo!!

Please Note ... while the giveaway is open worldwide, Scott Naturals® Tube-Free is currently only available for purchase in the US.

Good Luck!

a Rafflecopter giveaway



I received Scott Naturals® Tube-Free Toilet Paper in order to write this review. I received no other compensation. All opinions expressed are mine and mine alone and reflect my honest opinion of the product reviewed.


Images courtesy of Scott Naturals® Tube-Free, SOMMAI at FreeDigitalPhotos.net, and ... me!


Wednesday, September 10, 2014

Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) - Climate Change

Welcome to Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW)!

Wondering how to live greener? You've come to the right place. Each week we challenge ourselves to try a new task ... or "amp up" something we're already doing. We raise our awareness, learn from each other and develop Eco-friendly skills which will improve our lives and protect our planet. Doing so together gives us power ... the power to Change The World!

If this is your first visit, please click HERE for information and a complete list of all the challenges we've taken on so far.

This post contains great information and I encourage you to read through it at your leisure ... however, if you are short on time, you might find the following quick links helpful:


Last week we joined Mrs. Green in her annual Zero Waste Week event. The theme, this year, was "one more thing". The idea was that if we generate any waste at all, then there has to be one more thing (at the very least) which we can do to improve. I discovered something interesting during the event. Time helps us reduce waste. Let me explain. When we decide that we need an item, we can run out to the store and make a purchase. On the other hand, if we give ourselves some time before making a purchase, we can often find something in our homes which will meet our needs. By doing so, we've used an item which might otherwise be tossed out, and we've reduced the need for a new item (and all the energy and natural resources required by manufacturing processes).

By the way, Mrs. Green has begun a Zero Hero Facebook page and everyone is invited to join. The page will be a forum, of sorts, where the waste reduction conversation can continue. Have a difficult waste challenge? Post it on the page and see what solutions are offered. Have a great tip? Share it with others. This page promises to be a terrific resource. Here's the link: https://www.facebook.com/groups/377509552402840/

The Honor Society are those people who help us spread the "green" word by writing an article about our challenges and/or leaving pertinent comments.

Alica not only reduces waste at home, she takes action at work as well. She says, " There is always room to improve in this area! We try to have very little waste not only at home but in our business also. We are going to be trying some new things for Eco Natural in the next few months and I am working on my grocery trips having less waste. Always looking for great ideas and tips concerning this."

Katie focused her efforts at the grocery store. In addition to shopping in the bulk-bin isle, she's going to speak to an employee about a possible change. Can you guess what it is? Find out in Zero Waste at the Grocery Store [#CTWW].

Mary shared a great idea: "Great idea - there is always something more we can do, and this is a great reminder! One idea is if you use a juicer, instead of throwing away the pulp, you could save it and add it to a casserole! There's a lot of food wasted, and it's possible to use it all!"

Lady JC decided to go paperless this week. In Zero Waste Week - Going Paperless - Change the World Wednesday she shares her beautiful cloth tissues, napkins, and (un)paper towels. Yep, paperless towels! Brilliant!

Aimee (aka EcoGrrl) reduced waste in a big way! Check out her comment: "Always good to have these reminders every few months! I'm proud to say that since my husband arrived on the scene, we have not seen any noticeable difference in the amount of trash that goes out once a month - still only about 1/2 a bin that's picked up every 4 weeks. I'd still like to improve upon that, of course! On a larger scale, we'd started talking about replacing our sofa because we didn't know it was possible to re-stuff a sofa whose cushions were sewn to the frame. Well it is! I posted the link to an article showing how on my EcoGrrl-icious column this Friday. What a relief - I mean we'd have gotten a vintage or eco-friendly sofa and this one would have been donated, but I adore this sofa and am so happy we get to save it - and learn a new skill!" If you'd like the link, check out her EcoGrrl-icious post.

Lois has recently purchased a home and has some unique waste challenges. In Change the World Wednesday: My biggest Challenge she explains. And be sure to scroll down to see a photo of her new house. Congrats, Lois!

Susan joined us. Welcome, Susan! She says, "Thank you for your tips! It is great to come together in accountability and save the planet!" By the way, check out Susan's site for some great cloth produce bags ... great for eliminating plastic and waste!

Change The World Wednesday got a nice mention in Hottest Writers on the Web. Thanks to Kayelle Allen for including us!

Welcome to Taylor Made Ranch. They shared this brilliant tip: "Keep a reusable canvas bag rolled neatly into a plastic sleeve and tuck it next to your car's seat. That way if you make an unscheduled stop by the store you can just reach down & grab your reusable bag. The plastic sleeve keeps everything clean & you don't have to bring home a plastic shopping bag."

(La) Alicia has been reducing paper waste for a long time. In fact, it's her business. Check out what she does with rescued paper: Layered Necklace on Cobalt Blue Cord - Eco Chic. Beautiful!

Welcome back to Cinella. She's been away from CTWW for awhile but she has returned, this week, in grand style. Zero Waste Week 2014: Can it be Easy? offers a place to start ... shopping. She goes on to offer links to giveaways of reusable items and invites everyone to her YouTube channel where she's sharing her waste-reduction efforts. So nice to see you, Cinella!

The kitchen is a great place to focus our efforts. In Zero Waste: Waste Not, Want Not, Laurel offers some fabulous ideas. She suggests soups, stews, and even breads as methods to eliminate waste. Thanks, Laurel ... so glad you joined us!

Lisa offered us some great ways to meet this challenge: "The list could go on for a long time. Buy products with less packaging, buy products that can be used for more than one thing, make a big batch of cleaner and pour it into reusable spray bottles."

Argentum Vulgaris (AV) celebrated a birthday recently and hosted his annual birthday BBQ Bash. Happy "Belated" Birthday, AV! In previous years, he's said that he didn't have enough plates and utensils for all of his guests, so had to resort to disposables. How did he do this year? Find out in Change the World Wednesday – 3rd Sep. Be sure to read the entire post because AV talks about how bringing trash home actually reduces waste.

Our Twitter friends joined the conversation and shared the following:

From @GiveTreeGifts
- Reduce waste created by packaging. Buy produce at your local farmer's market & take your own cloth bags. #BuyLocal #CTWW
- 15 Ways to Reduce Food Packaging ow.ly/B28Pt #CTWW
- WWF - Waste Management: Evaluate How You Can Reduce Packaging Waste in Your Home ow.ly/B28W9 #CTWW
- Reducing wasted food & packaging ow.ly/B292t #CTWW

From @GreenQueenofMod
- #CTWW Eliminate single-use drip filters with a mesh insert. Save money. Save the planet. #reduce #zerowaste pic.twitter.com/xrAFHRAnnm
- #CTWW Say NO to single-use #diapers—use cloth instead. Better for #baby! 20 years later I have terrific dust cloths too! #zerowaste #reduce
- #CTWW Use a #Swifter when cleaning? Don't buy disposable cloths—use cut to fit rags from old Tshirts instead. #zerowasteweek #repurpose

From @AMCConsolidated
- we develop our product lines with ways to reuse products and thus reducing waste.

From @ConservationM
- Creative ways to use your overripe bananas #zerowasteweek #ctww squishablebaby.com/zero-waste-wee… … fb.me/IJasDBPn via @Squishablebaby

From @eitsart_design
- Wasting less food is definitely something I need to work on. Eat more leftovers!

The #CTWW Gang are those folks who tweet our challenges using the hashtag #CTWW. If you're a Twitter member, I recommend following them ... they share great things. Let's meet them:

@2kidsandacoupon @89linz @a_kiasi
@ahthesimplelife @allcollegeplan @artbysandra
@attiqueboutique @bettydharma @biggreenpen
@bsustainable2da @burp_blog @cellomomoncars
@cereusart @collegegogreen @conservationm
@de_kesha @ecofiber @foggybottomgal
@forloveofadog @freshcleanersaz @ginavalley
@givetreegifts @grandmasdiaries @greenglobaltrvl
@greenwithrenvy @groovygreenlivi @herbgir1972
@jnjgogreen @kaitlingarder @kayelleallen
@kirklander61 @laalicia @ladyjcmuses
@larlegal @laurelhounslow @leslieveg
@lisadliguori @marbaird @marjoriemcatee
@momgamerwriter @msmoreau_guid @myzerowaste
@nolafusion @organicrugs @p2pnyc
@rainyofthedark @rckweddings @realityarts
@romerojewelers @ruralmoms @samnyc5
@sfcouncil @spafloating @theworld4realz
@tiffanywashko @treadmyownpath @turningclockbac
@wencdj @whopaysthepiper

My Final Thoughts:

The price of waste is high. It costs natural resources to produce new items. It costs space for landfills, contaminated soil and water, and polluted air. It costs us money, time, and energy. In my view, the cost is too dear.

Thanks, everyone! If you wrote an article, I Stumbled, Tweeted, Facebooked and posted it on Google +. You can help spread the "green" word by using the share features located below this post.

This Week's Challenge:

Change The World Wednesday (#CTWW) - Climate Change
Pest populations are increasing
due to Climate Change
Here's a consequence of Climate Change which you might not have considered: populations of pests, like mosquitoes and ticks, are on the rise. Since both of these pests carry disease, it's a concern.

Here's your challenge ...


All of the green-living activities which we, as Eco-conscious people, adopt help control climate change. But we need more people to climb on board. So, this week, encourage others to take action against climate change. Need some ideas? Write a post about the situation and ask your readers to take on an Eco-friendly activity. Open a conversation with friends and family. Write to officials with your concerns and suggest actions which they can take. The idea, this week, is to get other people thinking about climate change and acting against this threat.

Are you ready to reach out to the world? I know that you are!

Until next time ...

WE'RE CHANGING THE WORLD ... ONE CHALLENGE AT A TIME!