How to do your spring cleaning naturally

A long time ago, when Verda Vivo’s author was still writing her awesome blog, I discovered that you could clean up with natural products. Ever since, I have been using vinegar for some of my cleaning. So if you are new to natural cleaning products, you can check Verda Vivo’s articles or this new one, … Read more

Composting matters

Compost cycleWithin my current involvement with the local JCI, I have been collecting information about biodegradable waste and composting. This is a question of importance as more than 30 percent of French waste could be biodegradable.

Meanwhile, recyclable waste – paper, cartons, glasses – represent just one percent more and are sorted out and recycled. I thus believe food leftovers, fruits and vegetable peelings, coffee and tea waste belong to a special bin.

This would have a lot of advantages as we will see in today’s post and I hope this will be as common as sorting out recyclables in a decade.

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” Plant, baby, plant ” Episode 3 : Plant for the Planet

Plant for the planetThis is the third and final part of my ” Plant, baby, plant “.  After delving on agroforestry and urban forestry and their respective merits, I am finishing with the UNEP Billion Tree Campaign and its successor.

After reading the first two articles, you might be more than willing to plant trees. It is time for you to join Plant for the Planet Foundation, the global organization succeeding to the Billion Tree Campaign.

This have been since its beginning in 2006 a tremendous success as each times goals had been set, they had been exceeded.

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How to save money on your commute

CommutingMy current job – which I have been doing for almost a year now – makes that for the first time in my life, I have to commute by car. In my previous jobs I was indeed commuting by using public transportation or simply walking.

This current situation is quite embarrassing as I have been dedicated to help protect our civilization from climate change and environmental perils. This is also a financial issue as I spend over 100-120€ on gas each month.

So after reading an article from the French ADEME, I decided to cut my speed on my way back home by 10 kmph, saving fifty euro cents per day, or around ten euros per month.

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Two tips for more sustainable vacation

Hello all ! I took a few days off – but not by the sea as the illustration might suggest – and this the occasion for me to share with you two ideas that will make your vacation a bit more sustainable.

First thing first, when leaving for a week or two, don’t hesitate to  turn off the electricity completely in your house or flat. This will allow you to save electricity as appliances such as the fridge or the water heater are energy guzzlers.

Second tip : if you want to feel even more on vacation and break your work routine, ditch your car for the train. Sure it will take more time but you will be able to read, write or play while traveling.

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Towards sustainability, reloaded

Back to 2009, I had started – but not finished – a series due to help you going towards sustainability. I am proposing you to re-publish it this year and finish it. This series’ goal is to help you cut your carbon and environmental footprint.

I must have four times more subscribers, so hopefully this will reach and help more of you. Please let me know if you have other tips and / or if these ones are actually helping you.

I am starting today with the first one, on heating as it is behind an important part of the energy consumption of buildings, this is where we begin.

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Why dual flush toilets should be ubiquitous

Using clean drinkable water to flush isn’t making much sense economically and environmentally. Yet this is the most practical one. (I don’t really see how people living in huge cities could all use dry or composting toilets)

This is why I believe that each and everyone of us should install dual flush toilets to minimize the quantity required to do so. Using the low flow flush does the trick in the vast majority of cases.

This will enable you to save huge quantities of water and thus lower your bills and environmental impact. So why not installing such a system this week and start saving money ?

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8 great tips to keep warm during winter

We might be led to thinking that with global warming, we won’t be freezing anymore during winters. Counter-intuitively, this won’t be the case as I wrote in December as global warming may mean colder winters…

So we should better learn how to keep warm while still not touching the thermostat or insulating our houses and apartments. (a sound move for many reasons as I previously wrote).

The French website Ecolo-info wrote a compelling article on the very matter. Here is a short and translated version of my own.

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Green lifestyle tips from our grandparents

To the Mother Nature Network : ” Our grandparents (or great-grandparents) — children of the Great Depression — could teach us a thing or two about going green on a budget. “Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without, (…) “ Their carbon footprint was uber-small — they used less water, less fuel, … Read more

Would you buy a $10,000 sandwich ?

The most probable answer is no. Then today’s post should help you reconsidering buying bottled water. Indeed, according to Annie Leonard’s latest short video the price of a bottle of water is 2,000 times the price of tap water.

I stopped drinking bottled water when I bought a Brita water filter. I could have went straight to tap water but concerns over the plumbing of our old house prevented me to do so.

Bottled water raises several questions and come with many problems. Indeed, it takes an awful lot of energy and money just to drink something you already have in your own home.

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Going further in reducing our amounts of waste

You may remember my article in June on waste in my Towards sustainability series. I was there mentioning the three Rs : Reducing, Recycling and Reusing. which are the basis of a more sustainable management of waste Now TreeHugger presents us with 7 Rs adding Rot (as nearly 40 percent of the world’s garbage is … Read more

Towards sustainability: going solar

Towards sustainabilityFor the seventh part of this series – and after having tackled heating, electricity, water, transport, food and waste – I guess it is time for us to see how solar energies can benefit our lives.

I mention solar energies as there are three possibilities : passive solar applications, which are the most basic, solar thermal – which heats water – and finally solar photovoltaïc (PV), which generates electricity.

Even if most of us already use passive solar there are possibilities to increase our usage and go progressively to solar thermal and finish with solar PV

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