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Last Updated: Jan 14, 2009 - 9:17:50 AM 

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Saturation Point

The Green Where It Can Be Seen
By Karey Burek
Jan 15, 2009 - 9:16:49 AM

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With the hustle and bustle of the holiday season behind me, I actually had a moment to myself to enjoy a few of the presents I had received. Two of the gifts were documentaries that I had been so looking forward to seeing, that upon receiving the DVDs, I squealed with absolute joy. Both movies, Sharkwater and Planet in Peril go into great detail as to the state of our world’s oceans, environment, species, human health and the absolute disregard some folks have for these things. My friend Ben and I screened both movies and were shocked and ­appalled by what was being reported. I was getting teary eyed watching how sharks are pulled aboard fishing vessels, mutilated and then tossed back in the ocean alive -- minus fins. I was ready to quit my life and jump on a ship to battle illegal long-line fishing and help save the sharks.

 Planet in Peril focuses on how the changing environment is ­affecting the entire world and how species of plants and animals are disappearing at a much faster rate than initially anticipated. Both movies inspired me to do something. The groups that were pushing for change in both of these films had begun as a few ­individuals wanting to be heard, and in some cases, their ­voices ­began a “green” ­movement.

One such movement is urging consumers to step away from the chemical house cleaning agents and create natural grime fighting concoctions that are less harmful to human and environmental health.  I must agree that I have gassed myself out of the shower trying to get the tiles clean, only to end up with a headache from inhaling chemicals.  Did you know that you can create a strong bacteria killer from such common items as lemon, honey, baking soda, vinegar and even tea tree oil? Don’t mix all of these products together. For exact recipes and tips, www.care2.com as well as thedailygreen.com have great step by step directions that will get you on the green track. They have mixtures for window cleaners, oven cleaners and even a tip on furniture cleaning. You can use natural soaps and items around the house to kill off dirt, bacteria and there is even a way to use vinegar to kill mold in the bathrooms! By using natural ingredients you will be creating a more safe and healthy environment for yourself, and cut down on nasty chemicals going down the drain.

Another neat tip I found seems so simple, but something I hadn’t thought of before. According to thedailygreen.com, putting a pitcher of water in the fridge will help with environmental and health factors.  How, you ask? By filling a pitcher of water and placing it in your refrigerator, you keep food cool; it serves almost like an ice pack would in your cooler. Not only will it help keep things chilled, it will stop you from running the faucet every time you want a cold glass of water. Running the faucet until the water is cool enough for a refreshing drink wastes gallons. By having a cold pitcher waiting, it will cut down on useless water loss. Last, but not least, by keeping water in the fridge with your other drinks, you may be more likely to grab that instead of a sugary beverage, improving your health.
I know these changes are small, but if enough people begin to live a “greener” life, who knows what wonderful improvements they will have on the health of the environment. Although I haven’t quit my life to fight shark finners, I still think of it daily and try to make small changes in my own life that will hopefully have big impacts on such things in the not too distant future.


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