Saturday, August 30, 2008

What's Good for Coral Reefs is Good for Us

What do National Geographic, Environmental Working Group and have in common?
They all reported on the ill-effects of certain types of suncreen on our coral reefs back in January and February of '08.  This is information that we all need and it should be highlighted again.
Live in a sunny part of the world and swim in the waters that support coral reefs?  You need to choose a sunscreen that won't poison the coral reefs.  Live in a part of the world where a winter vacation to a sunny part of the world is a welcome relief?  You need to choose a sunscreen that won't poison the coral reefs.
Oh, do you wear sunscreen, ever?  You need to choose a sunscreen that won't poison the coral reefs.......or you.
According to the Nat Geo site:
"..researchers estimate that 4,000 to 6,000 metric tons of sunscreen wash off swimmers annually in oceans worldwide, and that up to 10 percent of coral reefs are threatened by sunscreen-induced bleaching."
Fortunately, EWG reports:
The good news? "We don't need to choose between protecting our skin and protecting coral reefs," says Celia Ferreira, Ph.D., formulator of Caribbean Solutions sunscreen products in Orlando, Fla. "In my experience, sun products without petroleum derivatives actually protect the skin better."
The harmful ingredients to avoid include octinoxate, oxybenzone and 4-methylbenzylidene camphor, and the preservative butylparaben.  These also happen to be linked to cancer, allergic reactions, endocrine disruption, neurotoxicity and reproductive harm in humans, according to the EWG.
Once again, what's good for our environment is really most good for ourselves.  Preserve and restore the habitat in which we thrive - this is the deepest essence of sustainable choices.

And always remember...... doing a little is more fulfilling than thinking that a little won't make a difference.

Share your story with us..... send your first name, last initial, general locale and what YOUR sustainable choice was today.  Your choice will be magnified and made more powerful, you will educate and inspire, and others will join you.

Wednesday, August 27, 2008

Why Friends For A Green World?

A short while ago I watched Al Gore's speech - A Generational Challenge to Repower America. It changed me. It moved me to take action - many small actions - to begin to be a part of this transforming of America.

It occurred to me that many people have already taken actions to begin this transformation. We don't hear about them, unless we know them personally, and even among our circles of friends it may not be brought up.

I want to hear about everyone in this country making choices to live a sustainable lifestyle. I want to host this honor roll of courageous pioneers who make these choices, sometimes against economic good sense, but for the good of the whole. I want to laud each and everyone who chooses non-toxic cleaners for their homes, who buys biocompostable trash bags, who gives their child water for school in a reusable bottle, who buys a hybrid, rides a bike to work, installs geothermal or solar.

There are a thousand ways to be a part of this revolution - tell us who you are and what your choice was today. Send an email, send a pic or a link to your video about how you are part of the change we all wish to see.

When others see your example, they, too, will be changed - it is a seed that may bear fruit tomorrow or next year, but they will be changed.

Wayne Dyer talks about a study in which the serotonin levels and immune function were monitored in subjects performing acts of kindness. When that person performed the act of kindness his/her levels went up - giving them greater health and wellbeing. Then it was observed that the recipient experienced an increase in both as well. The best part for me was that the study revealed that those who simply observed the acts of kindness received the same benefits to immune function and serotonin levels as the two people directly involved.

Choosing environmentally sustainable technologies is a communal act of kindness - please share it with all of us - your gift will be magnified and your choice made even more powerful.

Join us.