Archive for the ‘Environment Friendly Ideas’ Category

World Water Day Takes On Global Water Crisis: An Interview with World Vision’s Dr. Greg Allgood

September 18, 2015

March 18, 2015 – We rarely imagine that a water crisis could hit the homeland, but if you think that what happens overseas couldn’t happen here in America, you’d be very wrong. It only takes one disaster, natural or man made, to compromise our water supply. In fact last year, 400,000 people in Toledo, Ohio, were without safe drinking water for days due to toxic algae in the water supply. A chemical spill in Charleston, West Virginia, made water unsafe to drink for weeks.

In the United States, we usually take clean drinking water for granted, but as thousands of people learned during Hurricane Sandy and Hurricane Katrina where many drinking water systems were impacted, Americans are just one disaster away from gaining a quick understanding of what 748 million people around the world experience every day – the challenge of getting access to clean water. In both U.S. disasters, World Vision responded and after Hurricane Katrina, it opened a 40,000-square-foot distribution center in Mississippi where $8.2 million in goods were distributed to more than 318,000 survivors.

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World Water Day is March 22nd and Dr. Greg Allgood, World Vision’s Vice President of Water, is on a mission to let the world know about the opportunity to solve the global water crisis.

Question: How big is the global water crisis?

Dr. Greg Allgood: More than 748 million people do not have access to clean water and the problem in the developing world is so severe that nearly 1,600 children under the age of five die each day from diarrhea caused by contaminated water, poor sanitation and improper hygiene – that’s more than AIDS and malaria combined.

Women and girls are responsible for water collection in 71 percent of households and in sub-Saharan Africa, they have to walk 3.7 miles every day to collect water. So when they have access to clean water in their community, it frees children from deadly disease; less money is spent on medicine which means more for savings and investing in things like education and the girls get to go to school instead of walking long distances to gather water.

Question: What are the latest advancements in reaching people in need with clean water?

Dr. Greg Allgood: We have several ways to reach the best clean water source whether it’s drilling deep wells or protecting springs. There’s nothing quite like providing water to a community for the first time. One of the most exciting innovations is our work using solar panels, a green energy source,  to pump water to communities.

World Vision is now the largest non-governmental provider of clean water in the developing world and we reach one new person with clean water every 30 seconds. Our approach is sustainable.  A recent study showed that even after two decades water continued to flow because of community ownership of the water points.

We also have an innovative and fun partnership with Sesame Street to reach school children in the developing world to teach good hygiene and sanitation practices that will dramatically improve their quality of life.

Question: What are some creative ways people can be a part of solving the global water crisis and help provide clean water to someone in need around the world?

Dr. Greg Allgood:   If you like to exercise, you can join thousands of people who will be walking or running a World Vision 6K on World Water Day for children in Africa. You can use social media to join celebrities like Pharrel Williams, Fergie and Pitbull by using the hashtags #WaterNow and #WaterEffect.

For just $50, you can give one new person with clean water that lasts and a pledge of $25 a month helps six people get clean water for an entire year.

You can be part of the solution at worldvision.org/water.

Quick Info/Stats on Global Water Crisis

  • Globally, 1 in 9 people lack access to clean water.
  • Women and children in sub-Saharan Africa walk 3.7 miles daily to collect water each day – that’s 20 million hours daily. Women and girls are responsible for water collection in 71 percent of households
  • More than one-third of the global population lacks access to improved sanitation.

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Dr. Greg Allgood is World Vision’s vice president for water. Allgood leads the establishment of alliances with corporations, foundations and individuals to enable World Vision to bring access to clean water to millions more people around the world. He holds a master’s in public health from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a doctorate toxicology from North Carolina State University. Prior to joining World Vision, Dr. Allgood created and led a global clean drinking water program that provided more than six billion liters of clean drinking water in the developing world and helped manage partnerships with the Clinton Global Initiative, the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation, and other nonprofit organizations. Dr. Allgood is a frequent lecturer on public private partnerships, sustainability and safe drinking water in developing countries.

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2010 40th Anniversary of Earth Day

December 8, 2010

April 2010:

Tara Aronson, Lifestyle Expert

Tara Aronson’s Ways to Go Green & Save “Green” & Save Our Ailing Planet.  It’s the 40th anniversary of Earth Day in 2010 and our world is in greater peril than ever, but there is also unprecedented opportunity to build a new future.  Earth Day 40 is a pivotal opportunity for everyone in America, along with corporations, and governments to join together to create a global green economy. Whether you’re trying to save money or trying to save the planet, going green makes a lot of economic and environmental sense. There are so many ways to save energy, make environmental decisions in every day activities and even when you travel. It’s so easy to be green. All it takes is making simple changes in your home, office and daily habits. There are hundreds of ways to go “green” and save the “green” and Lifestyle Expert, Tara Aronson, is on a mission to make the environment better NOW and here are some of her green ideas, not just for Earth Day, but for every day.

Give your home a green makeover.
Many people don’t realize how easy and inexpensive it can be to give your home a simple green makeover.  Not only will it help save the planet, it will save you money.

  • Unplug appliances you’re not using and save up to 26% off your total electric bill.
  • Replace your standard light bulbs with energy saving CFLs and save about $30 or more in electricity costs per bulb over its lifetime since CFLs use 75 percent less energy and last up to 10 times longer.
  • Conserving water by taking a shorter shower and only doing a wash when you have a full load will reduce your water bill measurably.
  • Carpool to work. If you carpool, you can save around $780 a year!  You may be able to find people looking to carpool on Craigslist or in your local paper.

You know, you can find more of these “40 Days of Earth-Friendly Living” tips online from The Elmer’s Glue Crew Recycling Program. It’s a 40-days, 40-ways calendar that offers an eco-friendly tip or idea each day, such as bike to work or school or turn off the lights. It’s a great way toget your family involved. You can download the calendar at elmersgluecrew.com.  The 40 Days calendar is just one way the company helps teachers and parents educate children about taking care of the environment. The program also includes a national classroom drive to collect and recycle millions of empty glue bottles and sticks each school year.  Last year, Elmer’s Glue Crew recycled 2 million empty glue bottles and glue sticks, and program participation reached 1.2 million students, 16,000 teachers and 83,000 classrooms.  Again, you can find out more at elmersgluecrew.com.

Buy Products from Companies that Practice Earth Friendly Choices.
One of the ways to really make a difference with our environment is to make “green” choices when you shop.  This means supporting companies that make “Earth Friendly” choices.

Green Giant vegetables is committed to reducing their carbon footprint. Last year, they replaced their packaging with unbleached recycled paper board reducing their green house emission by approximately 80%.  This also saves around 54,000 trees annually.  Also, for almost 80 years Niblets corn is vacuum packed so the same amount of corn is in this smaller 11-ounce can as in this 15-ounce cans. This uses less water, less metal and less fuel in shipping the product.  This Earth Day, they announced a program with The Nature Conservancy and are giving $200,000 to encourage and promote greener farming practices in and around their growing region.  You can learn more or make a donation to The Nature Conservancy at GreenGiant.com.

You know there are so many companies that understand the importance of being “green” and they’re initiating great earth friendly programs.  Here’s a company that’s really making a difference.

We’ve all heard of Underwriters Laboratories – they have been a pioneer in safety standards for more than 115 years. You know that “UL in a circle” on the back of products: did you know that the average home has more than 125 products with the UL Mark on it? That Mark signifies that the product has been tested and meets rigorous safety requirements.  Underwriters Laboratories also focus on environmental concerns where Moms have a chance to win an eco-friendly Imagination Playground designed to encourage creativity and sensory play critical to a child’s development for their own neighborhood or community center. This is all part of a “Save Play” program that encourages Moms to pledge support for local play areas through a Playspace Finder – a playground locator available at SafetyAtHome.com where they can also enter to win that Imagination Playground.

Don’t forget some non-traditional ways to make your home a greener place.
There are so many ways that you can make green choices in your every day life and they are so simple.  Here are just a few.

  • Skip the bottled water. Use a water filter to purify tap water instead of buying bottled water. Not only is bottled water expensive, but generates large amounts of container waste.
  • Make your own cleaning supplies. This is another earth friendly money saver that also eliminates waste on packaging of cleaners and that is to make your own earth friendly cleaning supplies.  All you need is a few simple ingredients like baking soda, vinegar, bleach and lemon.
  • Find new uses for old things. Before you toss something in the trash, consider how you might reuse it. An old tissue box is a great way to store plastic bags.
  • Make earth friendly choices when you travel. Hotels and cruise ships are becoming increasingly aware of being more eco-friendly.  One very simple way to conserve water when you travel is to not have your sheets or towels every day on extended stays at a hotel or while you’re on a cruise.  More tips on earth friendly travel ideas are at BestTravelDealsTips.com.

Remember, it is essential to teach your kids about every day ways to protect the planet, after all – they’re inheriting it from us.