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Becoming More Eco-friendly

Green keyboard

Since the Industrial Revolution, environmental advocates have been promoting eco-friendly living. But, what does it really mean to be environmentally-friendly? And why is this important? In 2021, we all know we should recycle and reduce our single use plastics consumption, most people don’t understand the value of doing these things as one individual in a much larger context. While it is important to live eco-friendly lives, it is equally as important is understanding why. Did you know:

  • According to NASA, the world’s rainforests will be gone by 2100 if the current rate of destruction continues.
  • If current patterns continue, we will have emptied the world’s oceans for seafood by 2050.
  • If all life on Earth was put on a scale, the human population would only make up about one ten-thousandth of the total weight of life on Earth.
  • Landfills are composed of 35% packaging materials.
  • Rainforests are cut down at a rate of 100 acres per minute.

(Environmental Facts Source: The World Counts)

The ‘Why’ of transitioning to an eco-friendly lifestyle can be as broad as combatting global warming as a whole or as small as reducing waste in your local waterways – but, every action counts. Whatever your personal reasoning may be, we are all working together towards a common goal: improving the world for ourselves and future generations.


How To Become More Eco-Friendly

We created this guide for easy eco-friendly living that include small, everyday changes you can implement to lesson your carbon footprint:

Switch To LED Lighting

LED stands for Light Emitting Diode and are now readily available at most hardware stores. Although they can be initially more expensive, they are more efficient and last 25x longer than traditional incandescent light bulbs. 90% of the energy used by incandescent light bulbs is waste in the form of heat. LEDs use 1/4 of the energy without any waste.

Limit or Eliminate Single-Use Plastics

Things like disposable cutlery,  excess plastic packaging, and soft plastic-storage bags are all examples of single use plastic. Single-use plastics and packaging make up 35% of current landfill content. Opting for products with little to no packaging or recyclable packaging are great ways to make your daily shopping better for the environment. You can also consider sourcing a local refill store where you are able to bring your own containers to refill on things like soap, laundry detergent, or bulk foods.

Eat Locally Sourced Foods

The food with the smallest carbon footprint is locally grown, or even better – you grow it yourself! This allows you to eat seasonally delicious foods grown by people in your community. Transporting food from abroad, whether by truck, ship, or plane, uses fossil fuels for fuel and for cooling to keep foods in transit from going bad.

Wash Your Clothes In Cold Water

If you have ever wondered, ‘what’s the difference between regular laundry detergent and cold water laundry detergent?’ – it’s fairly simple! The enzymes typically used in cold water detergent are designed to perform better at lower temperatures. Doing two loads of laundry weekly in cold water instead of hot water can save up to 450+ pounds of CO2 each year.

Buy Less “Things”

Less items being frivolously purchased or less items of lower quality being purchased, only to be thrown away shortly after, reduces a great deal of unnecessary waste each year. Purchasing more expensive, high-quality items or second hand items is a great way to keep items out of landfills.

Resources

https://www.theworldcounts.com/stories/amazing_environmental_facts

https://www.google.com/search?q=ways+to+reduce+carbon+footprint&oq=ways+to+reduce+carbon+footprint&aqs=chrome..69i57j0i512l6j69i60.4746j0j7&sourceid=chrome&ie=UTF-8

25+ Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

https://davidsuzuki.org/action/zero-waste-pledge/?gclid=Cj0KCQiAzfuNBhCGARIsAD1nu-8ewdyyZMlOinW3hRAdAqRl04xMG7ncYj_bFj59a0JMJtGbomSTou4aArL7EALw_wcB

The 35 Easiest Ways to Reduce Your Carbon Footprint

 

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Wetlands: The Secret To Climate Change

Wetlands: The Secret To Climate Change | Blog

Climate change is an important topic of discussion for the past couple of decades. There has been lots of talk about ways to prevent climate change from progressing, from turning off appliances or biking to work, but what are other factors that significantly affect the amount of carbon in the earths atmosphere? Well, world wetlands are the secret to climate change. More specifically by trapping something called blue carbon. But what are wetlands & why do we need them?

horse grazing in wetlands - Homebiotic

WHAT DEFINES A WETLAND?

Wetlands are commonly referred to as marshes or swamps, and can be found all over the world. Their main characteristic is that their habitat and composure is ever changing depending on water levels. Wetlands are made by floods or some are permanent fixtures of the landscape.

Wetlands are often also referred to as marshes or swamps and can be found all over the world. Their main characteristic is that their habitat and composure is ever changing depending on water levels. Some wetlands are permanent while… Click To Tweet

There are wetlands all over the world. Some of the most well known wetlands are The Pantanal (runs through Brazil, Bolivia and Paraguay), The Queen Maude Gulf (located in Canada) and Grands Affluents (in Chad). All of these wetlands have their own irreplaceable biodiverse populations. For example, The Grands Affluents is home to endangered species of hippopotamus, elephant and gorilla.

Some wetlands are man made! They are created in areas that need wastewater management and in urban areas where water scarcity is an ongoing issue. They are also often created in an effort to restore land areas lost to mining or development that have since suffered from wetland loss.

heron fishing in swamp - HomebioticWHY ARE WETLANDS IMPORTANT?

They are busy! Wetlands perform a number of important functions. Not only do they support a large number of animal and plant species (they are regarded as the most biologically diverse of all ecosystems), they also aid in shoreline stabilization, water filtration and purification, storage of water supplies and carbon processing. They also are able to store 10x the amount of carbon as an equivalent sized land forest.

Have you heard of blue carbon?

Marine ecosystems capture carbon. This carbon is blue carbon. Carbon is processed through photosynthesis and turned into plant material. Through this process carbon then becomes plant material aiding in water filtration and supporting this diverse ecosystem. Wetlands store 44.6 million tonnes of carbon material each year.

Greenhouse gases create a ‘green house’ like effect on the world. According to NASA:

The greenhouse effect is the way in which heat is trapped close to the surface of the Earth by “greenhouse gases.” These heat-trapping gases can be thought of as a blanket wrapped around the Earth, which keeps it toastier than it would be without them. Greenhouse gases include carbon dioxide, methane and nitrous oxides.

This heat trapping effect is also why we know climate change as global warming. Even the slight warming of the earth can have catastrophic effects of all of it’s inhabitants and our necessary resources. This is why it’s incredibly important to minimize and balance out our carbon producing activities.

wetlands - homebioticHOW CAN WE HELP OUR WORLD WETLANDS?

The loss of wetlands, not surprisingly, comes at the hands of humans. Wetlands are often contaminated by toxins and chemicals flowing through the water within them, hindering their ability to provide proper water purification and safe ecosystems for their diverse organism population.

Developers fill in wetlands for agriculture and livestock fields, mining, urban housing or industrial factory developments.

So what do we see when we destroy wetlands? Typically we see water scarcity, endangered species, shoreline instability and breeding/nesting areas disturbed. As bleak as this all sounds, we have great news: there are things that you can do to help preserve our world wetlands!

DO NOT USE HARSH CHEMICAL CLEANERS – chose natural cleaners to stop the flow of detrimental chemicals that get washed into our waterways each day. This can significantly reduce the amount of work our wetlands have to do. This will also help protect any species in our wetlands from being harmed by these chemicals. Using natural cleaning product alternatives, such as hydrogen peroxide and vinegar, then follow with an environmental probiotic, like Homebiotic, to rebalance and protect your home.

SOURCE SUSTAINABLE AQUACULTURE & AGRICULTURE PRODUCTS – do a bit of research when shopping to make sure you’re not purchasing from a producer that has created their product at the expense of our wetlands. Developers destroy wetlands to create aquaculture infrastructure like shrimp farms. So make sure you ask questions about where your food comes from and look for sustainable labeling.

HELP CONSERVE WETLANDS IN YOUR COMMUNITY – keep your eyes and ears out for developments in your community that may negatively impact your local wetlands. Contact local politicians and advocate for these extremely important ecosystems to prevent them from becoming developments. Cities use the ‘protected’ designation for important ecosystems to prevent urban development.

sand piper in swamp - Homebiotic

Nature preservation as a whole is of the utmost important not only for the continuation of many different species of flora and fauna, but also to keep the earth in good health. World wetlands are the secret to climate change. They filter our water, keep our shorelines intact, reduce the carbon in the atmosphere & are a necessity to many organisms. We love world wetlands!


RESOURCES

https://www.conservation.org/blog/5-things-you-should-know-about-wetlands?gclid=Cj0KCQiA0rSABhDlARIsAJtjfCfmGOxgFJtjEhlwB_JG1euU9TA1ufXi850za1At3qkG0_Q5tKP2EsYaAp9mEALw_wcB

https://www.conservation.org/blog/what-on-earth-is-blue-carbon

https://www.thebluecarboninitiative.org/

https://ontarionature.org/programs/nature-reserves/

https://smartwatermagazine.com/blogs/agueda-garcia-de-durango/10-largest-wetlands-world

https://climate.nasa.gov/faq/19/what-is-the-greenhouse-effect/

https://scied.ucar.edu/learning-zone/how-climate-works/greenhouse-effect