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Monday, April 22nd, 2013

Happy Earth Day!

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Happy Earth Day everyone! What will you do for the planet today? What better time than the present to change a habit or two? Here are some suggestions that are really easy to incorporate, and over time, they make a big difference.

1. Don’t run the dishwasher or washing machine until it’s chock full. Try to avoid rinsing your dishes with running water before loading them up; whether or not you want Fido to take care of business is up to you!

2. Reuse your water. Whether it’s a pet bowl you’re cleaning out, an ice cube you dropped on the floor or that stagnant half-glass from next to the bed, always think before pouring water down the drain. Use it on a plant indoors or out. Same goes for shower water that’s heating up – collect it with a bucket.

3. Cut the paper towel and napkin habit. Use old t-shirts and other rags for cleaning, and cloth napkins for dining.

4. Beware the energy vampires. Your computer does not need to run 24/7 and your phone doesn’t need to be charging for 12 hours straight. The coffee pot clock is sucking energy; after you’re done with your brew, unplug the coffee machine.

5. Speaking of coffee, banish the paper and styrofoam cups. Get a reusable cup that you can take to the coffee shop for refilling (most of these joints are actually shilling them right in their impulse buy area for convenience).

6. Before you put anything in the trash, think about  how else it could be reused, donated or recycled. Check your local recycling information web page. You may find there are many more items you could be recycling that you’re not, special days for bulk item and yard clipping pick ups and drop offs for electronics. They may also be offering up larger bins. Check Earth911 for more ways to recycle, upcycle and reuse.

7. Bring your own bags!!! If you are not doing this yet, you have no excuse. I’ve wound up with so many different giveaway bags I have started giving them back. Do make sure to keep the bag clean when you use it for food; I recommend a bag that is coated or machine washable as you will want to wash bags you use for food regularly.

8. Banish things with “disposable” on the label. Whether it’s a pen, a cleaning wipe, batteries or an eraser, buy things that are refillable and can be used for decades to reduce waste.

9. Stop the flow of junk mail. Go to the Federal Trade Commission’s site to find out how.

10. Shop for sustainable products. Whether it’s wood that’s rapidly renewable or sustainably harvested for construction, items that flat ship, produce that’s harvested locally, there are ways to rethink the way you shop. If you want to get started here, here’s our selection of sustainable goods.

What are you doing to celebrate Earth today? Let us know in the comments section!

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Wednesday, April 20th, 2011

Earth Day Plans Anyone?

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Earth Day is April 22nd. Do you have any plans? Have you done much to live a more sustainable lifestyle this year? What have you done lately? I’m not the most aggressive tree hugger, but I do try. Most recently I realized my toilet was leaking and got it fixed. This doesn’t seem like much, but it keeps an unbelievable amount of water from being wasted.* The water company dude pleaded with me to save money by trying to fix it myself, but clearly he did not know he was dealing with the world’s worst D.I.Y.er. Sometimes you have to know when to suck it up and pay a trip fee. We’ve been through so many droughts here in Atlanta since I moved here ten years ago that I am pretty careful about conserving water.

Anyway, I found this part of The Earth Day site where you can check out all of the Earth Day events and see what’s going on in your city. You can also make up your own event, and you can pledge to do an Act of Green. It’s kind of fun and little things count. Some of the things people are pledging include:

  • Going paperless with bills
  • Eating More Local Food
  • Bringing Reusable Bags to the Grocery Store
  • Shorter Showers
  • Converting every last light bulb to LED
  • Banning plastic water bottles from their homes
  • Using a clothesline whenever possible
  • Buying a the most fuel efficient car possible
  • Replacing appliances with more energy efficient ones.

These were just some of the ones that were in between total, total DUHS and totally insane. I mean really, if you’re not already turning off the lights when you leave a room, get with the program! Same with those of you who don’t bring your own bags to the store. I mean, one genius wrote “Don’t Litter.” Really Don Draper? You’re still littering? Don’t you give a hoot?

So, is there anything you can do to improve the planet, from wasting less to hitting a beach clean up? You certainly don’t have to do it on Earth Day proper, it’s just a good excuse to think about it and make plans.

*Regarding leaky toilets, most local utility companies will provide you with a free test kit to see if yours is leaking. They also provide kits for saving more water per plush as well (basically, you can accomplish the same thing by placing a brick in the toilet tank.

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Wednesday, April 21st, 2010

Celebrate Earth Day With 10% Off EcoTots

Lindsey

Posted by Lindsey | View all posts by Lindsey
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Celebrate Earth Day With 10% Off EcoTots

We here at Design Public feel that the Earth deserves more than just a day of celebration. So we’ve extended our Earth Day EcoTots sale to a full week! Now through the 27th at midnight, save 10% on all EcoTots items by using the coupon code EARTHDAY.

EcoTots designs and manufactures a high-quality, full-line of environmentally friendly, real wood modern furniture and furnishings for kids which assemble quickly and easily without any tools or hardware. All EcoTots products are made from renewable FSC Certified Smart Wood®, and are available in a variety of eco-friendly, UV finishes.

Shop EcoTots and save!

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Wednesday, April 22nd, 2009

Happy Earth Day!

Becky

Posted by Becky | View all posts by Becky
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Wondering what to do to celebrate Earth Day? Check out the Earth Day Network. Perhaps start by calculating your carbon footprint here. Afterwards, try to think of one seemingly small thing you can do to try and offset it. I know sometimes we all feel green guilt and think that being green means we have to give up toilet paper. Maybe it does, but I’m not going to. In the meantime, do what you can. It’s not hard, it just takes a little time to come up with new routines. Here are a few very easy ways to help – c’mon, I know you know all of these, they are total “duhs,” but are you really following through? Just try one for a month, then add another one the next month, and so on. As a bonus, most of this stuff saves you money. If you are already doing all of these things, keep up the good work:

  • Buy Local. Find out when and where local farmer’s markets take place; I promise it’s fun!
  • Swear off bottled water.
  • Vow to recycle more than just your newspapers and cans (for a guide to what to recycle and where you can recycle it, check out Earth911).
  • Replace paper towels and napkins and switch to cloth. You’ll get over feeling like you need to iron the napkins very quickly!
  • Unplug your electronics when they are not in use. Make sure the dishwasher and washing machines are full when you run them. If you use a dryer, try to do loads back-to-back.
  • Switch to compact fluorescent bulbs. They’ll save you money in the long run, and the quality of light they emit has greatly improved in the last few years. I know at first they were about as flattering as the light in an airplane lavatory, but now they are fine.
  • Install a digital thermostat. Pick one up at Home Depot and wait until the heating dude comes for maintenance. He’ll probably do it for you if you can’t figure it out, especially if you duke him a Jackson.
  • Think back to what your driving habits were like when gas was $5/gallon. Have you slipped back into your old habits? Pretend it’s $10/gallon and act accordingly.
  • Bring reusable bags to the grocery store. If you have them but always forget to bring them, keep them in the car. After you unload the groceries, make sure to throw them back into the trunk.
  • Make the no coal call.
  • Stop by and read one of the many fabulous environmental blogs. Some of my personal favorites include:

Inhabitat

The Lazy Environmentalist

Ecofabulous

TreeHugger

re-nest

These are just the tip of the iceberg. Do you have a favorite eco-centric blog? If so, please leave it in the comments section!

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