Friday, 24 October 2014

Dinosaurs, Mother Nature and Human Destiny

Dinosaurs and Mother NatureVarious theories exist about the event that ended the dinosaurs' dominance of the Earth. Whatever the cause, it was certainly cataclysmic. Dinosaurs had been around for some 135 million years – by comparison humans are believed to have lived on Earth for only 2 million years. In cosmic terms, humans have existed for the blink of an eye. Shorter still is the industrial era and technological developments that have allowed humans to dominate every facet of the Earth and control its very destiny.


We revel in our brilliance and ingenuity in mastering Mother Nature but as the Nobel laureate Richard Feynman once famously said, "For a successful technology, reality must take precedence over public relations, for nature cannot be fooled." Ultimately Mother Nature will prevail - she always has and she always will. The big difference, of course, is that unlike the dinosaurs' fate, humans may ultimately inflict their own demise. And we can see it coming.


These are not doomsayer predictions but rather inevitable consequences of our own actions unless we change course. For example, our very economic system is predicated on the ever increasing consumption of unlimited resources, which is fundamentally flawed given that Earth's capacity is obviously finite. Yet governments of all persuasions pursue unmitigated economic growth as a panacea for domestic bliss and, where democracy exists, for improving their chances of re-election by appeasing the masses.


At the same time, governments have been largely inactive in terms of mediating unsustainable growth in the global human population due to fears of a religious backlash and accusations of 'big brother' interference in personal lives. It is estimated by the Guttmacher Institute, for example, that 222 million women worldwide have an unmet need for modern contraception due to limited cultural acceptance, the level of female empowerment, affordability or problems with distribution.


A rocketing human population demanding Western lifestyles and consuming ever more resources to fuel economic growth clearly cannot be sustained in the long-term. Whilst technology improvements, energy efficiency, improved methods of food production and the discovery and extraction of fossil fuels from untapped areas such as the Arctic and the use of fracking will buy time they are not the solution (remember the jubilation at North Sea oil in the 1970s).


On the flip side, many of those involved in the environmental movement have been too quick to predict disaster. When it hasn’t happened there has been ridicule and consequential loss of faith in the predictions. Coupled with powerful corporate influences on public understanding, this has resulted in apathy and a large proportion of the population simply not believing the science. Changes are occurring but more gradual than some of the more perilous predictions. Others within the environmental movement have taken an almost fundamentalist line, which has played directly into the hands of the corporations and media who portray them as tree-hugging, sandal wearing hippies out of touch with reality.


The problems facing our planet in the coming years are considerable, but they are not insurmountable. Better education and empowerment of women are keys to bringing down high birth rates. This has been proven to be effective in developing countries and examples such as Malala Yousafzai provide real inspiration. The shift away from dirty fossil fuels to renewable energy sources is continuing and will accelerate as the cost-effectiveness of newer green technologies improves. Scotland, for example, is predicted to be entirely renewable electricity-powered by 2020. Consumer demand and campaigning for sustainable and fair trade products is forcing many suppliers to adopt more ethical practices. Demand for eco-friendly, fair trade products has surged according to the market research company Nielsen, and this trend is likely to continue.


We tread a fine line but ultimately we are masters of our own destiny.








Thursday, 23 October 2014

Drive an eco friendly car? Don't miss out on green insurance savings!

There has been a rapid rise in the number of low emission vehicles and hybrid cars on Britain's roads as more drivers look to cut costs with saving on fuel and tax.
 
What many don't realise is that insurance on these types of cars is often lower too, with many green insurance companies offering discounts for eco friendly and low emission vehicles.
Some green insurance companies also offer to offset your carbon emissions or contribute some of their profits to good causes.
 
If you drive a low emission, eco friendly car then don't miss out on potential savings on your insurance too whilst helping to protect the planet!
 
The Green Providers Directory provides a list of green insurance companies who specialise in this area.
 
 

"It wasn't the Exxon Valdez captain's driving that caused the Alaskan oil spill. It was

yours." - Greenpeace advertisement, New York Times, 25 February 1990









Wednesday, 15 October 2014

Drapers Organic

Organic cotton and hemp fabric
Drapers Organic are the hemp shower curtain, hemp fabric and hemp homeware Company. They offer you a great choice of colours and sizes in their two stylish hemp shower curtain collections, of which their ‘Purely’ Collection also makes elegant window dressings.

Drapers Organic have now added hemp beanbag covers to their mix and match homeware range of cushion covers, curtains, tablecloths, runners & napkins and have included their ‘Purely’ fabric to their vibrant hemp fabric by the metre range, so you can now make your own hemp shower curtains and homewares too!

Visit www.drapersorganic.co.uk

Call 0333 456 3560











Can you pass the greenwash test?

Unsustainable human consumption
If you listen to the marketing hype of some of the larger companies these days its easy to be seduced into thinking that they're all green and adopting sustainable policies towards the environment.

Its true that some have made encouraging steps forward, which is to be commended. However, a large proportion have cynically jumped on the green bandwagon and added 'eco' to various products and services whilst making no real changes to protect the environment. 'Greenwashing' as its become known, is prevalent across a range of industries.

At the same time, confusion over what is genuinely green and consumer disinterest and apathy, have led to the subject of sustainability dropping off the radar and being kicked into the long grass. Remember the coalition's pledge to be the 'greenest government ever'?

Let's ignore the various claims and counter-claims and look at two fundamental facts, which are quite alarming, and which serve to expose the truth behind the facade.

Firstly, wildlife populations have halved in the last 40 years, according to the latest Living Planet Report by the World Wildlife Fund. The report states that "the biggest recorded threat to biodiversity globally comes from the combined impacts of habitat loss and degradation, driven by unsustainable human consumption". That includes massive human population growth, particularly in Africa. The earth is undergoing a mass extinction due to human activity and we don't even realise it.

Secondly, global greenhouse gas emissions are set to hit a record high this year, with a rise of 2.5 per cent above 2013 levels. In other words, climate change isn't being brought under control - its actually spiralling out of control.

Don't be fooled into believing that we are living in a greener world, run by green governments and corporations trying to protect the environment. The unpalatable truth is that things are far worse now than they were before the so-called 'green revolution.'

If larger numbers of consumers can be better informed and convinced of the ecological dangers we face, then their combined demand for greener goods and services will cause a paradigm shift in buying behaviour whilst forcing traditional companies to adopt policies that reduce harm to the environment.

All of which makes it more imperative to see through cynical greenwashing and push for genuinely green products, whilst adopting more sustainable lifestyles.





Monday, 6 October 2014

Essence of Eden Premium Raw Organic Coconut Oil

Buy Wholesale Organic Extra Virgin coconut oil Online


We have a choice... we can continue to ingest hydrogenated oils through our diets causing obesity, digestive disorders, heart disease, premature ageing, diabetes, etc... or...

We can use one of the good saturated fats, used in times before 1920, Essence Of Eden, 100% Organic Virgin coconut oil, "the healthiest oil on earth" Bruce Fife. (Along with healthy diet and exercise).

There are many different brands of virgin coconut oil available in the UK, mainly cold pressed, Expeller pressed or worse copra.

However Essence Of Eden is different because their oil is produced without pressing or heat to extract the oil, which retains the highest possible level of nutrients, therefore giving a Premium oil.

The second distinctive mark between Essence Of Eden virgin coconut oil and others is that their oil is Certified by the Soil Association, USDA and Indocert. This applies not only to the processing plant but the Farm itself, the Process, the Exporter and Importer all inspected and certified plus they are licensed by Defra so you really know you are getting - ORGANIC!!

Thirdly, they present their oil to you in glass jars, to enable you to see the quality of their product and that it has no gray/yellow patches of mould which you would not be able to detect if plastic tubs were used. So please enjoy, being assured that you have the best quality oil available!


Visit www.essenceofeden.co.uk







Monday, 15 September 2014

Global Seesaw

Global Seesaw sell products made by social enterprises that exist to put peoples freedom first. They love being a part of these individual journeys to freedom and now you can join in too through buying their products. Global Seesaw sell Bags, T-Shirts, Luxurious Sari Throws, Kantha Stitched Scarves, Jewellery, Soaps and Handwash to name just a few of their products.

Through selling these products they’re able to reinvest any profit into the purchase of more products to continue the great work of bringing freedom to the lives of many women across the world.

Also did you know they specialise in Custom Printing?

That’s right, they supply a variety of organisations, groups and individuals with a whole range of bags for conferences, specialist shops and more as well as t-shirts printed with your logos and designs for events, promotional wares, whatever the occasion.

So do get in touch via their website to find out more.

BohoHemp introduces new brands to their collection with the launch of a new website

BohoHemp have unveiled a new look and launched their new website with the aim to sell everyday ethical fashion and accessories to everyone. The eco boutique has been successfully selling hemp and organic clothes for over 2 years so it was time for an updated design and an advanced e-shop to accommodate their increasing range.

As well as selling clothes from bestselling Canadian retailer Nomads and Belgium’s Uprise, lingerie and sleepwear from Jonano and skincare products from Hemp Hemp Hooray, they have added three more ethical brands to the collection. Founder Emma is especially excited to be selling first ever ethical flip flops from Gandys, “ The brothers story is a truly inspiring and encouraging success story of how you can really bring benefit to people and our planet through very simple innovative design ”. The BohoHemp Holiday Shop is selling these alongside hemp lip balms, sunblock and after sun from Yaoh and hemp hats and bags from Sativa for customers to easily access good quality, ethical holiday accessories to take to a festival, beach holiday or staycation.

Emma’s enthusiasm for sustainable living and personal touch has proved popular with her customers, generating a loyal following and a now a worldwide distribution. She is always keen to meet the needs of her customers; “I hope you like the new look and find it easy to navigate around and overall, enjoy shopping with us! I’d welcome any feedback, so please email me at emma@bohohemp.co.uk



For further information, please contact: Emma Parkinson on 0787652234


Photo attached of Emma Parkinson


Sunday, 8 June 2014

How to be green with your bedroom space

As the world becomes more and more aware of being environmentally friendly and socially responsible, people are often looking at ways to reduce their carbon footprint. If you’re starting a new decorating project, you can do your bit too – here are a few ways that you can transform your bedroom and be kind to the environment.

Use green fabrics

Creative types will love the world of possibilities that green fabrics bring, especially since so many can be found in ‘vintage’ bed linens. Try organic cotton, and do your homework on how the fabric was made – choose fabrics that are made without toxic chemicals and screened with water-based, non-toxic inks. You can learn more about choosing non-toxic ink here.

Organic cotton is slightly more expensive but the advantages of using it are far greater – it does not involve the use of pesticides and is the much-preferred option for farmers.

Choose the right paint

You may think you’re doing your bit for the rainforest by forgoing wallpaper, but you also need to be careful when choosing your paints. Conventional paints contain formaldehyde, heavy metals and volatile organic compounds, and these can last for up to five years after you’ve decorated.

While EU guidelines have made stricter limits on the amounts of VOCs paints can use, the general guideline by the Ethical Consumer states that you should use plant-based, water-borne paints. You can find a good selection of environmentally friendly paints at earthbornpaints.co.uk.

Recycle your old furniture

Starting afresh can mean throwing a lot of your things away – including environmentally unfriendly products such as your bed. Thankfully, Bedstar offers a mattress recycling service – when you purchase a new mattress from them they can take your old mattress away for just £39.

Recycling is hugely important, and studies have shown that using recycled materials can result in an 86% decrease in air pollution and 76% in water pollution. What’s more, the UK produces up to 420,000 tonnes of waste household wood every year, so by recycling your bed frame too, you’ll be doing even more for the environment.

You can also do your bit for your local community by logging on to The Furniture Re-Use Network. The organisation helps the most disadvantaged families by giving them recycled furniture, so if you don’t live within easy reach of a local recycling site, you can get in touch with them and go the extra mile to help both the environment and those around you.

Sunday, 18 May 2014

ColdProof


ColdProof – whole house energy efficiency analysis & retrofit for old houses.
Specialist in accurate & detailed baseline energy analysis of existing housing, using Passive House methodology and thermal bridge modelling. The resulting action plan of improvements enables clients to reach specific space heating demand or carbon emissions reduction targets.
The action plan includes a likely list of materials needed, sequence of work & economic analysis. This is all arrived at through several trial runs in which scenarios for improvements are honed according to the available budget - all done in consultation with the homeowner.
Project co-ordination also available.
 
 
 
 
 
 

BOHOHEMP PRESS RELEASE 09.05.2014

HEMPISTAS ON HAMPSTEAD HEATH

BohoHemp, have just released their first ever video starring the beautiful Melissa Wells, Green Goddess and former HollyOaks star.  Melissa commented on how gorgeous the clothes felt when she was modelling the clothes and even struck a few yoga poses herself on the Heath.

“We decided to choose Hampstead Heath as the location as it brings together the rural and urban environments in perfect synergy. I felt the site really reflects the versatility in wearing the clothes. They can be worn in a everyday durable way for walking, yoga, lounging around but can also be ideal for a smart casual wear to work look, or going out on the night for a more dressy in the city style!

 The aim of the video is to try to bring the clothes to life making the link between the past, present and future. I also wanted to get the feel of the garments across to the viewer and I hope the vid goes a little way towards doing that. Whenever anyone purchases some of the BohoHemp range, they are always amazed by the quality and the luxurious nature of the clothing”.

Emma, BohoHemp Director and Business Owner

This is the first of many so checkout the online shop www.bohohemp.co.uk to view and let me know what you think of it? Any ideas too about you would like to see in future videos, always welcome to hear.

 

 

Saturday, 26 April 2014

Saturday, 12 April 2014

Aromantic - The natural choice for make-your-own cosmetics

If you don’t want to buy off-the shelf products but instead would like to make your own natural, safe, cruelty-free and high quality skin, hair and body care products, Aromantic is the place to go.

 

 

3 Simple Skin Serum Recipes the Aromantic Way


You can help reduce the signs of aging in the face and around the eyes by using super potent active raw materials in a mainly oil-based blend called a ‘serum’.  Serums prevent premature signs of aging as they contain high doses of antioxidants, which work on the skin if used regularly and thereby reducing damage caused by the aging of the connective tissue such as elastin and collagen. Serums are used on specific parts of your skin, usually the face and around the eyes to effect an intensive cure.  A serum is best applied in the evenings after you have cleansed your face and applied a toner.

Recipes make 100ml/g.

Face Oil Serum for all skin types


87ml Kiwi Seed Oil

8ml/g Rosehip Oil

4ml/g Vitamin E Oil (undiluted)

0.5ml/g Vitamin A Palmitate

5 drops Rosemary Antioxidant (CO2 Extract)

10-12 drops Essential Oils of your choice (optional - be careful around the eyes)

Face Oil Serum Skin Rejuvenation Recipe for Dry, Mature and Sensitive Skin


40ml/g Kiwi Seed Oil

20ml/g Rosehip Oil

20ml/g Macadamia Nut Oil

15ml/g Avocado Oil

3ml/g Vitamin E Oil (undiluted)

0.5ml/g Vitamin A Palmitate

8 drops Rosemary CO2 Extract (Antioxidant)

1.5ml/g (OR 1/2 teaspoon) Remodelling Intense

10-12 drops Essential Oils of your choice (optional - be careful around the eyes)

Anti-Wrinkle/Skin Rejuvenation Face Oil/Serum for oily/large-pored skin


60ml Evening Primrose Oil

25ml Rosehip Oil

10ml Pumpkin Seed Oil

4ml/g Vitamin E Oil (undiluted)

1ml/g Sea Buckthorn CO2 Extract

5 drops Rosemary Antioxidant (CO2 Extract)

10-12 drops Essential Oils of your choice (optional - be careful around the eyes)

Method for Making Face Oils/Serums


1.      Simply blend the ingredients in a bottle and shake well before use.

 

2.      Apply directly around to the face and gently around the eyes in the evenings or whenever your skin need extra attention.

 

Learn to make bespoke natural skin, hair and beauty products with our flexible 1-day training modules and courses. Visit Aromantic’s Course Zone

Many more make-your-own recipes can be found in our book Natural Spa Products

About Us

Aromantic has been inspiring and empowering the natural make-your-own community to create natural skin, hair and beauty products since it was founded by award-winning organic skin care expert Kolbjorn Borseth. Kolbjorn’s extensive research and innovation has made Aromantic a forerunner for all-natural products, courses, information, publications and customer support.  With an extensive range of over 700 products of well researched and mostly natural ingredients, proven recipes, and equipment we provide you everything you need to create your own natural skin, hair and beauty products.









 

Green Accountancy

Green Accountancy is a rapidly growing firm of Chartered Certified Accountants specialising in friendly accountancy and taxation services for individuals, social enterprises, small businesses, charities and not-for-profit organisations.

Green Accountancy is uniquely qualified in both accountancy (Chartered Certified Accountants) and environmental conservation (Diploma from Oxford University), and encourage their clients to reduce their environmental impacts.

They provide help on VAT, payroll, management and year-end accounts. Taxation services include all tax returns and tax planning. Their approach is low risk, meaning that whilst minimising your tax liabilities they ensure that the risk of problems with any authorities or regulator is minimal.

 
 
 









Monday, 17 March 2014

Faith in Nature

One of the original pioneers in natural products, Faith in Nature has been creating preparations from naturally derived sources for over 40 years.

Today, the multi-award winning company offers over 150 natural and affordable formulations for bath, body, baby and home. Combining knowledge of plant materials, aromatherapy and natural extracts, every Faith in Nature product is crafted by in-house experts. Designed to be kind to skin and the planet, Faith in Nature’s body care ranges are also free from parabens, SLES, artificial colours and fragrances.

Approved by Cruelty Free International, Faith in Nature products proudly features the ‘Leaping Bunny’ a promise that no Faith in Nature product has, or ever will be tested on animals.

Suitable for Vegans, products are also biodegradeable and packaged in 100% recycled bottles when available.

In addition, they also offer a Humphrey's Corner natural baby bath time range. Specially developed to care for baby's delicate skin, the range contains mild and gentle shampoos, bubbly baths and nourishing baby lotion.

Visit www.faithinnature.co.uk







Sunday, 16 March 2014

Blue Line Office Furniture

Blue Line Office Furniture provides office furniture solutions for the South East including Harlow, Essex, Bishops Stortford, Hertfordshire, Cambridge and London. Their huge range of office furniture includes office chairs, office desks, filing cabinets, standard and bespoke boardroom tables, reception furniture and more. Wherever possible Blue Line utilises accredited sustainable products which help meet corporate and social responsibility needs for sustainable office furniture. Blue Line also takes pride in its Ergonomic Furniture and Innovative Furniture Design. They also repair, recycle and refurbish current office furniture and they stock second hand and second user office desks, office chairs and other office furniture. www.blueline.uk.com





 

Sunday, 9 March 2014

Olihive Cream

Olihive cream, www.olihive.co.uk, is made of all natural ingredients with the healing properties of beeswax and honey, ideal for minor skin irritation and inflammation, a must have by all the family for every little thing even as a deep moisturiser. This exceptional healing cream can heal and soothe open wounds, cuts, bed sores, nappy rash, skin rash, cracked skin, sunburns, chapped lips, acne, insect bites, skin burns; it can be used as a hand cream, on tired feet, and so on. Also, Olihive Cream has shown to provide relief for psoriasis due to its moisturising benefits.

Sunday, 2 March 2014

7 easy ways that you can go green

Due to the current economic climate more people are becoming aware of their waste and their finances. Here are 7 ideas on how to reduce your utility bills, become more eco-friendly and easy substitutions that will make a difference on your finances.

1.       Switch it off. Switching off electrical equipment at the socket is a great way to prevent electricity drainage. LED electrical equipment is often referred to as ‘electricity vampires’ because when they are on and not being used they are continuously draining electricity.

2.       Paper. Although we live in a technology era, paper wastage is still an issue. People are still wanting and giving paper receipts, paper invoices etc. A great way of preventing paper wastage is by writing all your notes down into a notepad/note book. This encourages you to use every patch of paper and also enables you to section areas for each topic/to do list. Then once used, unless you need to keep it for reference, you can recycle every bit of the pad.

3.       Recycle. Recycling is an easy change that requires little alteration to your daily life and yet helps to reduce the amount going to landfill. One idea is to have small bins for each type (paper/plastics) which you can empty at the end of the day into the appropriate bins or recycling bags. By choosing small bins you can stash them away under desks or in cupboards so you don’t have to look at ugly big bins. If you can place the bins in convenient locations in your home makes using them easier and less hassle so there is no excuse not to use them.

4.       Smart meters. Smart meters are a new technology that the UK government is hoping to have installed at every property in the UK by the end of 2020. A smart meter is a clever device that displays your electricity and gas usage in real-time and the cost in pounds and pence. This way you can make informed decisions on energy saving measures to save you money because smart meters show you when during the day you used the most energy.   

5.       Renewable technology. Investing in a renewable technology is a great way of reducing your carbon footprint and generating your own electricity or heating for your home. This will reduce your utility bills and can even earn you money. If you are considering in installing a renewable technology at your property it is worth researching the types of funding available to you to help cover the initial installation costs and on-going running costs.    

6.       Hot drinks. We are all guilty of over-filling the kettle and re-boiling the same water that boiled when we left the room a minute ago. Reducing the volume of water in the kettle and the number of hot drinks you have throughout the day will help to decrease your electricity bills and carbon footprint. Making a pot of tea or putting your hot drink in a thermal mug is a great way of ensuring you have a hot drink available to you for longer without the need to keep re-boiling the kettle.

7.       Invest in good quality clothing. By investing in good quality, hard wearing clothing and accessories ensures that you save money in the long run. Why buy a shirt for £10 that will only survive 3 washes when you could buy a £30 shirt that will last for over a year? People are often put off by the initial cost of a more expensive item of clothing, but this is why you should view it is an investment and not an initial saving! The same can be said for women’s accessories, if you invest in a practical, stylish, waterproof oilclothhandbag instead of a handbag that isn’t robust enough for continuous use then you will have saved money by the end of the year.

This article was written by The Old Bag Company – an award-winning bag company who designs a vast range of designer bags for many uses from oilcloth handbags to baby changing bags and large beach bags.

 

 

 

Friday, 21 February 2014

Daniel Field Hair Colour

Daniel Field Hair Colour is one of Britain’s leading hairdressers, and is known as the pioneer of organic hair dye, natural hair dye & Mineral Hairdressing. Their range of natural hair dyes are suitable for vegans and contain NO ammonia, alcohol, hydrogen peroxide or PPDs. Their advanced formula water colour is the world’s first long lasting colouring range without ammonia, PPDs, alcohol or hydrogen peroxide. Simply add water, shake and apply this hair colour for natural hair colour and to cover greys. Visit www.danielfieldmailorder.co.uk





Tuesday, 18 February 2014

Beyond Organic Skincare


Chemical sensitivity is becoming increasingly prevalent with many people suffering skin allergies and ‘breaks outs’. This could well be to do with ‘chemical overload’ as about a third of all non-natural cosmetics contain up to 16 EDC’s (endocrine disrupting chemicals).

 
The good news is that by switching to natural and organic skincare, especially those containing medicinal plant extracts you will no longer be exposing your skin to stress and you will be harnessing nature’s power to support and heal you.
 
Beyond Organic Skincare use lots of natural plant extracts known to support the skin’s structure, elasticity, and protective system. It even does an anti-ageing range containing natural peptides from blue lupins and beta glucans from oats.

www.beyondorganicskincare.com

info@beyondskincare.co.uk

0845 500 3550







 
 
 
 
 

Friday, 7 February 2014

Mama Nature

 
Mama Nature an are an award winning eco-friendly, organic skin care company that freshly prepares all products by hand. They just can't help their mothering instinct to nurture, help and protect.

Because their diverse range of products are innovative, revolutionary and life changing they are recommended by Dermatologists, Mid-wives and Health Visitors.

Vegan approvedThey care about your well-being and that's why they refuse to fill their products full of synthetic ingredients. They are leading the way in the use of natural and organic ingredients in skin care. Everyone needs a Mama LOL. Please visit
www.mama-nature.co.uk









Friday, 31 January 2014

The dilemma of owning a car and being eco-friendly

The RAC believes one third of motorists have left the car in the drive more often because of petrol costs. But while higher fuel prices have gone some way to reducing the number of unnecessary car journeys it is obvious that the UK remains a nation addicted to the car.
It is a fact of life, however, that driving a car is more or less unavoidable and those of us with a family, in practice, have no choice but to buy one. That can be a real headache, but there are ways of limiting the impact.

Do you have to own one?
Of course the best way to lessen the damage of driving is to do it as little as possible. A car is a costly possession if you don’t need it and with very reasonable temporary car insurance quotes allowing you to drive friend’s or family’s cars for 1-28 days, not to mention the plethora of car rental options, owning one might not be necessary.
Green cars
In late 2010, on the eve of a classic-car rally between London and Brighton, 60 ‘eco-friendly’ cars did the route in reverse, promoting the growth of cars that minimised carbon emissions.
In amongst the prototypes were established, mass-produced vehicles like the Toyota Auris and Prius, and the VW BlueMotion Golf.
There is no denying that green cars have made significant strides in recent years, with more motorists attracted by their green credentials, as well as the savings they can achieve through lower fuel consumption and lower road tax. Unquestionably, these cars have a lower environmental impact.
But the solution they currently present is far from perfect. Many of the cars still use petrol in some capacity, while the provenance of the electricity used to charge fully electric models is a serious issue – the damage done by fully charging a car on coal-fired electricity is essentially the same as filling a conventional car with unleaded.
Petrol or diesel
Another issue presented by the electric and hybrid interlopers is their expense and size. It is unlikely a larger family would consider a Toyota Prius the perfect fit.
That leaves many with no option but to opt for an orthodox model. Both diesel and petrol come from refining crude oil so their green credentials are limited, but diesel has a greater oil density, meaning more power is liberated when it is burned. That makes it more efficient and meaning 10-20% less CO2 is generated per mile.

Reducing emissions further
The most cost-efficient way of driving regularly and limiting your emissions is to look at how you drive. Maximum fuel efficiency is usually around 55mph with amount of fuel guzzled increasing by 15% for every 10mph above that. If you have to drive on motorways, sticking to the inside lane is the greenest place to be. Turn off the air conditioning, make sure you aren’t carrying needless weight and drive smoothly. Don’t leave the engine running and make sure your tyres are at their optimum pressure.


 


 

How to switch your energy supplier

Consumer bills are on the rise and households in the UK face rising energy costs. This is in part due to government policies that are aimed at reducing greenhouse gas emissions, and government drives to improve the energy efficiency of the nations homes.
Government policies look likely to increase the cost of electricity by 27% by 2020 or £280 annually.
In addition the UKs gas reserves are dwindling, exposing the UK consumer to changes in world gas prices. The Department of Energy and Climate Change state that the rising cost of gas is largely in response to increases in the global demand and as the UK currently enjoys the cheapest unit cost in Western Europe prices are likely to continue to rise.
Add to this the toughening economic conditions which sees unemployment on the rise as well as inflationary pressure, and households are facing a bleak future as they try to keep themselves warm through Britain's harsh winters.

Fossil fuels are by their nature a finite resource and without the discovery of substantial new resources prices will continue to rise in indefinitely. Though the UK is taking steps towards renewable energy provision, its unlikely that this will replace fossil fuels within our lifetimes.

The government is seeking to mitigate the effects of such rises by aiding households in improving their energy efficiency. The Green Deal scheme has been developed, providing loans to households to aid them in installing energy-efficient products such as Smart meters and improved home insulation. With such improvements it is estimated that the average household will be able to save £94 annually.

The main six energy companies supply 99% of household energy in the UK and government holds hopes that there is room for increased competition in the marketplace. Up to 85% of UK homes have never considered switching their energy suppliers so there may be substantial savings to be made if people take the time to check out their full range of options.
 
With a lessening of government regulation many new players have joined the energy business bringing new life and increasing competitiveness with in the energy market has made it incredibly simple for households to compare energy prices and switch their energy supplier.
Theres a wealth of energy supply comparison sites on the Internet and by supplying your postcode a quick estimate can be made of the level of savings that could be achieved. With a few simple mouse clicks a deal with a new supplier can be arranged. Ensure to explore the range of grants and loan that are available from both energy suppliers and local and national government as with an improvement of the energy efficiency of your home you could double your savings. Deregulation of the energy market has also allowed new green suppliers to compete for your business, so its now possible to invest in the future of the planet by meeting your energy needs from a supplier that will have a minimal impact on the environment.

Wednesday, 29 January 2014

Worse than malaria or TB but never discussed

According to the Blacksmith Institute in partnership with Green Cross Switzerland, the health burden of pollution from industrial activities is as bad or worse than that of malaria or TB. Yet the problem goes largely ignored. Why? Because pollution is seen as the necessary price of economic growth. And economic growth is what keeps governments in office.
 
The new report claims that waste from mining, lead smelters, industrial dumps, mercury, radionuclides, pesticides and other toxins affects the health of an estimated 125 million people worldwide.
 
In one tragic example, doctors carrying out vaccinations in a Zamfaran village in Nigeria questioned the general absence of children attending their centre. They found the reason. Hundreds of children from the village had died from lead poisoning whilst thousands more were stricken with the effects of high levels of lead in their systems.
 
Demand for the latest technology and gadgets is soaring and such equipment often requires use of rare earth metals and this in turn requires more mining and resource extraction. Those working in or close to the mines are often exposed to toxic substances and suffer a range of health problems. Sadly, many of those affected are young children.
 
In addition to the problems associated with mining for rare metals, up to 10 million tonnes of obsolete but still dangerous pesticides have been dumped in tens of thousands of locations across the globe according to Green Cross. Such dumps pose a serious threat to ecosystems and human health.
 
This, of course, is the visible end of the spectrum. The true extent of industrial pollution is likely to be far greater than official estimates.
 
Governments of all ilks are keen to pursue economic growth because it raises living standards and increases prosperity. But what about the living standards of the 125 million poorest people whose health has been blighted and who remain largely ignored?