Earth Day Tips

In honor of Earth Day, Vancouver’s “24 Hours” recently published a list of 10 things you can do to be kinder to Mother Earth. Their tips include: converting to compact fluorescent bulbs, properly disposing of pontentially toxic garbage, composting, and collecting excess water from your shower or sink to water your plants. These ideas are basic, easy to do, and can have a big impact on the health of the environment.


More wind power coming soon, but FOUR TIMES more coal power also coming soon equals making air pollution much worse?

Remember that story about the Irish company that is going to build so many windmills in Texas that it will become the biggest wind energy generator in the country?

Well, I guess all the good from wind power will be offset by TXU building 11 new coal fired electric plants that will supply 8,600 megawatts, according to this article in the Dallas Morning News.

There was ONE postive sentence in the article though:

TXU also will create a company, TXU Renew, to invest in renewable fuel facilities, such as wind plants, and will invest $2 billion to develop cleaner-coal and nuclear technologies.

Creating Clean Energy from Municipal Landfills

This interesting article details how some enterprising (and practical) environmentalists are using municipal solid waste (MSW) to generate clean energy. It’s a well know fact that the decomposition process in municipal landfills creates all kinds of gases and heat, but what we do we this process is the subject of the article. Here’s an excerpt:

Next generation waste management may be significantly improved by using different technology to better manage solid wastes. The next generation technology calls for the anaerobic digestion of MSW that produces biogas in the same manner that landfills produce biogas. Municipalities are quite familiar with anaerobic digestion technology since some 10,000 already own and operate anaerobic digesters and have been doing so for the last 75 years. The biogas can be beneficially used by generating electricity in the same manner that landfills are converting methane gas to electricity. This method of waste management, however, is easily capable of producing over twice as much electricity as mass burn MSW facilities are able to accomplish by using improved anaerobic digestion technology.


Electric Environmentally Friendly Gardening Tools

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With this handy electric chipper shredder, you can transform woody material such as tree trimmings into high quality mulch. You can also use this tool to make material to add to your compost pile. An added benefit is that you won’t have to worry about gasoline, spark plugs, or starting the engine with this chipper shredder, because it is electric. Simply plug it in and you’re good to go. No exhaust fumes either!


EPA considers tougher rules for lawnmower emissions

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Did you know that a standard walk behind gasoline lawnmower puts out as much air pollution as 11 cars? And that a riding lawnmower puts out as much air pollution as 34 cars? The reason for this is that even though mowers have small engines, they don’t have sophisticated emissions systems like automobiles. The extra weight and expense of a really elegant emission control solution doesn’t really add up for a $200 to $2,000 product, according to manufacturers.

But the EPA is considering tightening the rules so that lawnmowers won’t pollute as much anymore, according to a new Wall Street Journal article.

Stick to a manually powered push, reel mower. Because gas mowers don’t just cause air pollution. They are also dangerous!

Pollution and noise aren’t the only drawbacks to the greater use of lawn equipment. According to the Consumer Product Safety Commission, hospitals saw 14,607 injuries from riding mowers in 2004, up from 9,001 in 2002. There was also an increase in injuries associated with walk-behind mowers: There were 3,485 in 2004, up from 2,450 in 2003.