Earth Day Leftovers

Tuesday, May 11th, 2010

My portfolio on Earth Day is screaming, “Post me! Post me!” While I did use every April posting to insert a factoid or create link to Earth Day, I still have some items to share.  Also, I will post a product this month in P.I.C. that might be of interest to you because it is a biodegradable sponge. To liven up the posting, I have added some photos of rhododendrons that are blooming now!


I receive emails from the Environmental Working Group, who publish the Dirty Dozen and the Clean 15. Here is the list of the 12 foods that EVG recommends buying organically grown, because these receive the heaviest doses of pesticides:

apple, peach, bell pepper, celery, nectarine, strawberries, cherries, kale, lettuce, imported grapes, carrot, pear


Now here are the Clean 15, those fresh foods that are lowest in pesticides, so organic is not quite as important:

onion, avocado, sweet corn, pineapple, mango, asparagus, sweet peas, kiwi, cabbage, eggplant, papaya, watermelon, broccoli, tomato, sweet potato

The EWG also published their Healthy Home Checklist to get rid of toxins lurking in your kitchen (ex.plastic food containers), your laundry (ex. green cleaners), and all around the house (ex. foam furniture). To access the list as well as sign up for their helpful newsletter, go to www.ewg.org. They are a non-profit organization, so please consider a donation.


Recently, we purchased a convection toaster oven, because I don’t like heating the oven for one sweet potato or 6 spears of asparagus. I Googled toaster ovens and found out 10 great “green” facts about these mini-ovens:

1. Speed– Cooks food quickly–cooking time is 30% quicker. So you save time and electrical energy. (See #4)

2. More even cooking – The use of a fan means no cool or hot spots.

3. Use old recipes – The convection oven can accommodate all your old recipes.

4. Saves Energy—and money – Heats up quickly because it is small; efficient in use of heat; cuts energy about 20%.

5. Size – Relatively compact so convenient yet meet most of your needs.

6. Easy to clean – Trays and racks can be removed for cleaning.

7. Price – Reasonably priced, so good to your budget. (Mine was about $70.)

8. Flexible use – Can be used for a snack or a meal.

9. Easy to use – No complicated instructions; easy for young children and seniors.

10. More nutrients on your plate – Lower temperatures than a regular oven for certain foods, and with lower temps, you preserve more of the nutrients.


Finally, I came across 51 Things We Can Do to clean up our environment from Time Magazine, April 2007.
I chose 10 items related to lifestyle changes:

1. Take the bus to work or even for long trips.

2. Pay your bills online. Save paper.

3. Check the label when buying new appliances to get Energy Star items and maybe a rebate.

4. Skip the steak. (the international meat industry generates about 18% of the world’s greenhouse emissions, which is more than transportation emissions. This is from a 2006 report from the U.N. Food & Agricultural Organization.)

5. Say no to plastic bags.

6. Support your local farmer.

7. Shut off your computer, not just sleep it.

8. Wear “green” makeup.

9. Check your car tires and other parts of your car to keep it running efficiently.

10. Consume less, share more, live simply.

Help preserve the planet for the next generations!

P.S. My Earth Day folder is still heavy, so I may do another Leftovers later in the month or next month.

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