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krissy's blog

Urban Farming

The word "farm" often conjures up images of pigpens, silos, and acres of corn, not urban “farmers” living in a city.

Urban farming isn’t new. Ancient Persia had urban farms, and so did Macchu Picchu. However, now with the popularity of green living, urban farming has become more common. The environmental benefits of urban farming are numerous. Cities are often the most environmentally-friendly places to live, with public transportation and being able to walk everywhere. If you can grow your own food, it just adds to the “greenness.”

One hurdle when it comes to urban farming is space. Here are some ways around that:... read more

PressReader App Review

I like to read the newspaper, but I seldom buy newspapers because of all the waste that accumulates.  I've taken to reading the majority of my news online, but it doesn't offer the same experience that reading a traditional newspaper does.  

I recently downloaded PressReader onto my iPad and I'm loving it.  It is the best newspaper app I've used to date.  It really looks like a newspaper and it feels like I'm reading a newspaper - without the garbage, without the blackened fingertips, and as many newspapers as I want to read fit right inside my iPad.

pressreader app... read more

Greener Homes and Gardens

greener gardenThe perfect hybrid of green, healthy and beautiful are qualities that we should look for in our day-to-day lives. Providing a lovely living space while nurturing our families and helping them grow is the formula for a good life. Sadly, not everything is made of sunshine and daisies, and the water you drink and the veggies you eat, might not be as pure as you think. According to the EPA, there are pesticides used on your food can have negative effects on your health and the environment. Although the use of pesticides have been reduced since 2007, the EPA uses close to a billion pounds per year of commercial pesticides on crops in the U.S.

Pesticide manufacturing plants have even been known to make the National Priorities List (NPL), a list of places labeled extremely toxic by the EPA. To help in the  reduction of toxic sites, there are remediation companies, like Sevenson Environmental, that can restore valuable plots of land.

A Bounty In Your Kitchen

If you don't have a yard, or you'd like to keep gardening during cold winter months, there are plenty of kitchen or spare-room friendly gardening options for you. You've probably seen the infomercial for the Topsy Turvy Tomato grower, which can be grown indoors and found online for less than ten dollars. The same company also makes a Topsy Turvy Strawberry grower that can hang from just about anywhere. For the devoted kitchen gardener, Urban Farmer makes a mushroom growing kit for less than 30 dollars. You can grow up to two pounds of fresh mushrooms in as little as ten days.... read more

ABC's of Tire Recycling

tire recyclingHave you ever wondered what happens to old and worn out tires once you get them replaced on your car? Fortunately, as Green Living notes, the latest improvements in technology have led to more options for recycling rubber tires. According to data from the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, about 80 percent of the 290-plus million tires a year are now saved from going to the dump, and are recycled and turned into other types of products.

Rubber Gets Used

For example, Green Living explained, old tires are often ground up and used in rubberized asphalt, as well as rubber flooring for educational and commercial locations. This style of flooring is especially popular with designers and architects due to its array of colors, designs and durability. In addition, ground-up rubber can be used for athletic turf, mulch, playground surfaces and walking and running trails.... read more

Stop Dunkin Donuts from Using Styrofoam

Dunkin Donuts Styrofoam cupsI've blogged in the past about how detrimental to the environment Styrofoam is and I've even blogged about how I wished Dunkin Donuts would stop using Styrofoam.  Almost two years after I wrote that blog post, Dunkin Donuts is STILL using those awful Styrofoam cups.  

I grew up in the Northeast with Dunkin Donuts all over the place.  Not gonna lie, I enjoy the occasional chocolate donut and I love their iced tea on a warm day.  But, each time I set foot in a Dunkin Donuts I feel my blood boil whenever I see their cups.  It's disheartening that they still haven't made strides to phasing out those cups.

Well, over the past few weeks, I teamed up with the good people at Causes.com to create a petition urging Dunkin Donuts to STOP using Styrofoam cups.  

I'm asking all of our readers here at Keen For Green to please sign our petition:  Stop Dunkin Donuts Styrofoam.  ... read more

Reducing Energy Wastage

reduce energy wasteToday we have a guest blog post from our friends at Everest.  These tips will help you to stop wasting energy and reduce your monthly bills!
 
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While it is true to say that home energy use has actually declined in over the last few decades, the cost of household bills has soared. In fact the cost of these bills is up from £960-£1030.
 
And, with spring barely rearing its head so far, the recent cold snaps have undoubtedly resulted in an increase in energy use in the home. Did you know there are things that we can do to reduce energy wastage in order to save on utility costs? 
 
Here are some suggestions from leading home improvements specialists Everest:
 
A clean chimney is an energy efficient one.  
 
Sweeping the chimney of soot and debris will ensure your fire burns safely and efficiently – and this will help you to save on fuel.... read more

Green Road Trip Travel Tips for Your Dog

Although all dogs don't love riding in the car, most will be good sports about it with some TLC and training. Some people medicate pets with sedatives for long journeys. If you travel a lot this can become problematic. Over time your pet might develop a dependency on medication for travel or suffer from side effects. There are much better ways to get the pup excited (and then calm) about riding in the car.

Ease Anxiety Naturally

Well-known dog whisperer Cesar Millan says that dog owners have the power to calm their dogs with their voices, attitudes and body language. If you are calm and pleasant, your dog will be too. If your dog is prone to anxiety and you plan to take a long trip, natural products that use herbs like ginger and lavender ease tension. They work the same way a warm, herbal-infused cup of tea eases human stress. One product, Travel Calm, is a spray mist that sells for about $12 at pet health food stores, and can reduce restlessness and nausea.... read more

Green Easter Baskets

My son is almost 5 and a half, and every year I have a blast putting his Easter basket together.  It's easy to fall into the trap of getting lots of cheap candy, plastic goodies from CVS, and stuffing the basket with Easter grass, but there are many tips for making an Easter basket just a little bit greener:

1.  Skip the Peeps and make some homemade goodies!

2.  Forget about Easter grass.  You don't need it.  We usually just skip it entirely, but some alternatives are shredded newspaper or some green yarn.... read more

Hybrid Hand-Me-Downs: Shop for Fuel-Efficient Used Cars

Just before the new year, the Environmental Protection Agency released definitive figures that the 2013 Ford Fusion Energi plug-in hybrid takes the crown as the most fuel-efficient 4-door vehicle on the planet. Constructed with hybrid drivetrain, the Energi plug-in boasts a 108 MPGe rating, beating out the previous title-holder, the Toyota Prius plug-in, which uses 103 MPGe. Not only will you be saving the environment by driving one of these beauties Ford estimates that driving a Fusion Energi will save you $6850 in fuel costs compared to the money you would spend on an average new vehicle over five years. With these numbers, Ford planned to sell over 19,000 hybrid or electric vehicles in the last quarter of 2012, according to Edmunds.com.

Although buying a fuel-efficient vehicle like the Ford Fusion Energi might be the ideal, buying a new car may not be in your budget. Not to worry although the new vehicles are boasting greater gas mileage, there are plenty of phenomenal fuel-efficient used cars that can meet your needs. Using ConsumerReports.org used car-buying guides you can find a fuel-efficient pre-owned vehicle that meets your needs.... read more

Debunking 5 Common Solar Myths

Think solar panels won't work for you?  Maybe it's time to think again.  Solar can be affordable, work well in cold climates, and (oh yeah!) save the planet.  

Let's debunk 5 common solar myths.  

Myth #1:  Solar is pricier than conventional energy.

Reality:  Solar panels can indeed be costly upfront.  Some people might need to look into financing options.  Other people might opt to lease, which has a low upfront cost and low monthly payments.    Solar can also pay for itself after a while, especially in states with great incentives such as Oregon, New York, and Massachusetts.  

"While solar energy can require a somewhat daunting upfront cost, Massachusetts homeowners are currently looking at one of the best payback periods in the country: between 5 and 7 years.  After the payback year, your system becomes cash flow positive, and you can produce free, clean electricity for 20 to 30 years.  Remember, there is no such return on investment when paying your utility company month-by-month for electricity," says the Sunlight Solar blog.... read more

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