Archive for Sustainability

Dust Particles

Maybe cleanliness is not the best thing from a sustainability stand point. In a recent study it turns out that all those dust particles may be good for us after all. From my perspective, the really interesting part of this is the fact that exposure to the natural world, with all of its inherent potential infectious agents and dust particles seems to strengthen our immune systems and reduce asthma.

Why this is a surprise is a mystery to me. We evolved as a species exposed to the world. We now know that buildings are healthier that allow access to fresh air and natural daylight. It should come as no surprise that exposure to animals and dust from barnyards, rich in organics is good for us.

Dust Particles

Of course, this bucks the trend that lead us to kill 99.99 percent of all germs…I don’t worry about the 99.99 percent, just the .001 percent that can survive. So stop that cleaning at home…Sounds like a good excuse to me.

Read the full article:
Barnyard Dust Offers a Clue to Stopping Asthma in Children
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Reusable Meal Kits…Necessity is the Mother of Invention

Talk about a society of convenience…Meal Kits to the home are now multiplying in number, quality and diversity. Finally, at least one company, FreshRealm, has determined that it should not produce waste as a product of the packaging used for these kits. Good for them.

Reusable Meal Kits Grilled SalmonThey have developed completely Reusable Meal Kits. The kit is sent back to them for sterilization and reuse. Now other companies are ordering these packages from them. Hmmm, didn’t we used to refill containers all the time? Soda, beer, etc? Well, it seems that were are coming full circle.

This does not make meal kits a sustainable resource. After all, we are requiring that individual meals and packaging be shipped to and from different addresses. That consumes fuel, and utilizes natural resources. But it is a start.

Read the full article:
A Tantalizing Offering From a Meal Kit Service: The Box
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Lake Mead Drops to Record Low

Maybe its time to do away with the idea that dams can be built to provide enough water for desert cities.

Maybe its time to remove at least one dam so that we can move water to another lake?

Whether or not we remove dams, create tunnels or simply move out of the desert, it is clearly time to do something drastic when it comes to water. The concept of sustainable water supplies has been pushed over the limit by committing more than 100% of the Colorado River’s water.

Lake Mead Dam

This simply cannot continue. I rather like the idea of taking down a dam or two…or at least opening them up so that less water is wasted via evaporation. Of course, maybe the excess of cities like Las Vegas, where fountains splash and canals are built to resemble Venice has lived out its useful life?

Read the full article:
Lake Mead drops to record low: What’s next?

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Not all recycling is sustainable…Yes, I said that

First, let me say that I am a bit of a coffee snob. I like coffee that is fresh and not made in plastic cups.

Second, yes, I said that not all recycling is sustainable.

Recycling K-CupKeurig’s newly designed K-Cup is designed to be more recyclable than before. But as David Gelles points out in his article, there is more to recycling than just the ability to take a product and actually recycle it.

In most cases, recycling is a net energy saver. In the case of the K-cup, a solution in search of a problem that never existed, the net effect of making the cup, transporting it and then recycling it yields a net energy loss. Simply put, this is a product that is simply the equivalent of putting lipstick on a pig.

In reality, the term is greenwashing…and truth be told, there is no way to make this product environmentally sound.

How about making coffee and not pods?

Read the full article:
Keurig’s New K-Cup Coffee Is Recyclable, but Hardly Green
Limited free access; NY Times subscription may be required.

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