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Business waste management and recycling

There are many aspects that need to be considered when running a business. Outflow and inflow, overhead costs, labor regulations and even the safety precautions and insurance are just some of the many factors that come into play. One of the very important factors that is often slighted or forgotten is the issue of waste management. Waste management provided by a waste management company in a business process is as important as getting the raw material and making the final product. If waste is not properly disposed off in the correct manner, it can lead to lower productivity rates and also harm the environment to a great extent. Experts in the field are Cawleys who can offer office recycling at your place of work.

Waste or garbage as we know it is basically all the remains, by products or unnecessary products that are designated to be thrown away. One needs to realize that such items cannot just be thrown in the bin and forgotten about. It is a binding and legal requirement of all companies and businesses to engage in the sorting and correct disposal of garbage to prevent any climatic changes in the future that could also lead to an epidemic on the whole.

Business or commercial waste is disposed of by many agencies that offer their services online in different ways. There are a lot of companies that are doing their share to provide these services so as to protect us from the hazards of waste pollution. They also offer services that can help you with new ideas as to how you can dispose off waste in a more efficient manner. The waste that is disposed off your sites of work are managed in the following ways:

  1. LANDFILL: Landfill is a method that is used for garbage and waste that can be termed as non hazardous and the recycling of which does not need any processing before being reused. Landfill sites are planned with great care and the type of waste thrown there is also regulated so as to ensure that there are no chances of infection or disease to spread in the neighboring areas. The waste collected in this manner is usually used as a rock bed for future constructions or even as a site for making manure or fertilizers.
  2. INCINERATION: The method of disposal by burning is also known as incineration. This is used as an effective method in places where the waste cannot be recycled or is hazardous in nature. This is an effective tool for all hospitals and small nursing homes or clinics and any companies and businesses that are dealing with the concept of health care. Disposables used in operating rooms, tools, syringes and tube etc. are disposed off effectively in this manner.
  3. RECOVERY: The recovery method is one of the most important and tedious of all the methods of recycling waste. It involves the process of sorting out the recyclable and non recyclable types of discarded materials and then re distribution of all that can be used by other companies or organizations before it is not usable any more. Paper and plastics are good examples of this type of waste. It is said that one sheet of paper can be re written in a printer 8 times before it becomes unusable. Such methods are very important in playing a crucial role in saving the environment.

Dog Portrait Made from Reclaimed Cardboard

Dog Portrait from Recycled Cardboard

Artist Ali Golzad created the awesome dog portrait pictured above out of reclaimed corrugated cardboard, but his depth as an artist goes much deeper.

I didn’t understand folks who had portraits done of their dogs until my husband and I adopted our sweet rescue a few years ago. Now I could totally see myself wanting a piece of wall art featuring our sweet girl Jenna. The cut up pieces of cardboard give the piece a beautiful texture, don’t they? You almost want to reach out and pet this sweet pup! The dog is named Lucy, and Golzad created the portrait for her owners.

Invisible People by Ali Golzad

Golzad is an avid craftivist, and his body of work extends far beyond dog portraits. His series Invisible People – also made using reclaimed cardboard – is meant to raise awareness about human trafficking. This excerpt from his artist’s statement about the series is so powerful:

I have a strong affinity for these traumatized and abused children because when I was ten years old, I was forced to flee my native Iran due to revolution there and live as an orphan in Sweden until I was reunited with my parents three years later. To me the plight of child soldiers and children abused as sex slaves escapes notice in the civilized word which causes me to question how civilized we really are. To me, these are invisible people.


New mapping software takes you on the scenic route

Most GPS mapping apps are designed to get you where you want to go quickly. But for those who seek the scenic route, experimental software being developed by Yahoo researchers promises paths that are not just efficient, but also beautiful, pleasant and emotionally stimulating.

SpaceX rocket launches 6 satellites into orbit

The private spaceflight company SpaceX launched six commercial satellites into low-Earth orbit on Monday, July 14 in a mission that was expected to include a key rocket-reusability test.

Will a 6-hour workday make Sweden more productive?

The city government in Gothenburg is about to embark on an interesting experiment, asking one set of workers to work only six hours a day, while another set of their colleagues will continue to work the standard seven, reports Fast Company. The idea is to test whether shorter workdays can increase productivity, decrease absenteeism, and maybe even boost job creation too.

Fed Up! The Truth about Sugar

Screen Shot 2014-04-27 at 2.13.28 PMSugar seems pretty innocuous, but more and more research is showing that sugar (in all its forms) is really terrible for our bodies. Some researchers and doctors even say that it’s one of the great public health epidemics of our time. Really…? Yes, really.

Finally there is a film that covers our sugar-laden lifestyles. Fed Up, set to release in theaters May 9 2014, is a documentary that focuses on how sugar has become an ingredient of obsession and even addiction. The film, by Laurie David, the producer of Al Gore’s famous documentary, An Inconvenient Truth, looks at the scientific and medical evidence that shows why and how sugar has become a problem of epidemic proportions.

No doubt this is shocking news to some. As a chef and educator, I find that sugar is one of the foods to hardest to talk about. Most people know it’s not good for you to sugar to their coffee or eat too many sweets, but what many people don’t realize is that sugar is in EVERYTHING, and we’re eating it for breakfast, lunch and dinner everyday. This over-sweetening of our food system has drastic consequences. Just for starters, excessive sugar consumption is related to:

  • Elevated blood sugar levels, which can lead to diabetes
  • Weight gain (hidden calories in non-nutritive foods and drinks)
  • Metabolic syndrome (linked to the most common lifestyle diseases)
  • Moods (sugar leaves you high and low all day long)

Here are some ways to avoid excess sugar in your diet:

  • Learn to like some bitter: learn to take your coffee, tea and other drinks without added sweetener.
  • Buy everything unsweetened: plant-based milks, sauces, dressings, beverages, yogurt and more.
  • Skip common breakfast foods like cereals, granola bars, and granola: these are all delicious, but all loaded with sugar, even those found in health food stores. Make your own granola with little sugar and make your own energy bars with healthy fruits, nuts and seeds.
  • Read the labels on everything: sugar is almost always in bread, crackers, sauces like Veganaise, pasta sauce, dressings and more.
  • Eat sweet foods in moderation, and when you do choose to enjoy them, make sure you have some fats and protein to help slow the absorption into your blood stream, keeping your insulin levels steady.

Here’s the trailer for Fed Up: I hope it inspires you to look at sugar in a new way, and allows you to make some healthy switches in your diet.





Salt on Mars may turn ice into liquid water

It may seem impossible that water could flow on the frigid surface of Mars, but a new study in a simulated Red Planet environment shows that a type of salt there may melt the ice it touches.

Bottlecap Art: Mixed Media Assemblage by Leigh Kirkland

Bottlecap Fish by Leigh Kirkland

I spotted this awesome bottlecap fish at Sweet Melissa’s, a breakfast place in downtown Decatur, GA. Isn’t it awesome?

Atlanta artist Leigh Kirkland made this bottlecap fish, and it looks like just one of many in her collection. She works in a variety of media, from watercolors to mixed media art featuring found objects. Her found object assemblages are by far my favorite pieces though.

There’s a great bottlecap flounder on her website that uses old hinges as the fins. I just love how she uses what she has to create sweet art pieces that clearly have a sense of humor.

Have you spotted any cool, upcycled art lately? I’d love to hear about it in the comments!


How Green is your Kitchen

green-kitchenI have always believed that the kitchen should be the greenest and the cleanest part of any household. It is the very spot where we cook food, make our meals, and experiment on different drinks and dishes, which are the very reasons why we continue to live. Aside from the fact that it is where nourishment starts, it is also the very place where we tend to spend time with our family, especially during dinner time as most of us love to converse on the table. But kitchen cleanliness should not be limited to its appearance. Yes, you may have spic and span oven, island, pantry, and stove, but are your cooking utensils BPA-free? Do you have preservatives or additives in your pantry? Have you been using chemicals to strip away grease? If you are, then your kitchen is not entirely clean or green because all these are dirty as it can cause various diseases to you and your family. Here are the main considerations to know how your green kitchen is.

1. Go easy with your kitchen cleaners. Undeniably, household cleaning products are easier to use while homemade kitchen products are quite challenging because you will have to create the solution first before it becomes effective. However, the latter is undeniably a better option because of the absence of any chemical formula in the solution, keeping you and your kitchen at bay from contamination. Apart from that, natural kitchen cleaners are very cheap as most of the ingredients are most likely sitting in the pantry. For an all-around house cleaner that you can use in your kitchen, you will need 1 tsp borax, ½ tsp washing soda, 1 tsp liquid castile soap, and essential oils which can range from lemon, lavender, or orange. To create the mixture, add 2 cups of warm water and pour it into a bottle and shake well. Spray the solution on the affected area and wipe it with clean rag. To clean a dishwasher, you will only need a bowl of undiluted white vinegar and then run the dishwasher as usual without any eating utensils inside. These kitchen cleaners may take time to fully provide a sparklingly clean effect to your kitchen, but the fact that they’re effective and all-natural, you’re guaranteed of a safer and more efficient way to have a green and clean kitchen.

2. Purchase eco-friendly kitchen utensils only and steer clear from plastic-made items. Plastic products are made of non-biodegradable substances that are dubbed to be one of the top contaminants of different bodies of water in the world. Aside from that, the substances are then eaten by aquatic inhabitants, which are then consumed by us. Unfortunately, since we are on top of the food chain, we get the most amounts of toxins, so it is always important to take note of the things you use in the kitchen. For basic green kitchen utensils, opt for bamboo utensil sets, eco-plastic or bamboo cutting/chopping board, environment-friendly lunchbox made of recycled materials, green placemats that are made of recycled fabric, and even eco-friendly aprons.

3. Use all-natural ingredients for your recipes only. Never include MSG or preservatives and additives in your recipes as these are carcinogens. Having all-natural ingredients in your pantry such as freshly harvested veggies and fruits is one of the best ways to keep a healthy and green kitchen as well as a well-nourished family, which is always the goal of every responsible parent. Make sure to have a good supply of rich-hued vegetables such as carrots, broccoli, kale, celery, as well as citrus fruits to help your loved ones obtain their needed vitamins and minerals. To spice up your recipe, only use natural spices such as garlic, bell pepper, chili, lemon grass, and the likes.

4. To maintain the cleanliness of your kitchen, clean food drops and drink spills right away. These can become food for pests such as cockroaches, ants, flies, and rodents, which are apparently one of the greatest carriers of disease-causing germs at home.

5. A green kitchen does not only mean a clean kitchen. It also means an energy-efficient kitchen. You can have one by using green certified refrigerator and eco-friendly stove and oven. There are newer kitchen appliances these days that offer energy-saving features. Although they’re pretty expensive, the savings and the ease of use can compensate its price. In addition to that, use solar panels for your lighting and heating needs in the kitchen. Some households are even installing solar panels beside their kitchen for cooking and heating purposes.

6. Use grey water wisely. The water used when washing dishes as well as doing your laundry are useful to plants. If you have a garden, toss grey water to your plants to minimize the use of your water sprinkler. Grey water contains chemicals that are necessary for the plants’ growth.

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Spotted: Upcycled Candles from Old Wine Bottles

Rewined: Soy Candles in Reclaimed Wine Bottles

You know that I love a good wine-related craft, and these upcycled bottle candles from Rewined are rocking my socks!

The candles are molded inside of reclaimed wine bottles that the Rewined team collects. They clean, cut, and cure the bottles before filling them with scented soy wax candles. Check out this video about their process:

They make each candle by hand, and the artist signs it! I love that they’ve found a way to scale up without losing the craftsmanship and love that comes with a handmade item.

My only hesitation with these candles is that they use “fragrance” to scent them. Fragrance isn’t necessarily bad, but just like in beauty products, it casts a wide net. The fragrance could be a blend of totally safe essential oils or a mix of harmful chemicals. There’s just no way to know, and whether you’re concerned about fragrance is really a personal call.

You can find Rewined candles on Amazon.


Invite Pollinators into Your Garden with a Bee Habitat

Invite Pollinators into Your Garden with a Bee Habitat

Colony collapse disorder (CCD) is a serious threat to our food future. Bees pollinate around 1/3 of the food that we see on store shelves. If we are going to continue to feed ourselves, we need to protect bees and other pollinators. This bee habitat is a great way for you to help native bees in your area!

There are a lot of factors that contribute to CCD. Habitat loss is one of them. The more land we develop, the fewer places bees have to build their homes. This bee habitat, which I first posted over at Crafting a Green World, is one way that you can make your garden a friendly place for pollinators.

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Make Your Garden a Home for Pollinators

You only need a few simple supplies to make your own bee habitat:

  • scrap wood
  • a drill
  • drill bits ranging from 3/32″ to 3/8″

That’s really it! How you drill your holes depends on the size of your wood. My piece was long and skinny, so I went with a 3/16″ bit and tried to space my 3-4″ deep holes about 1″ apart. Check out this document from the Xerces Society (pdf) for how to decide how deep your holes need to be and how far apart you should space them.

Want more ideas for creating a bee-friendly garden? I’ve got some tips over at Crafting a Green World!

This is just one way to invite pollinators into your garden, of course! So spill it, gardenistas! How are you making your garden bee-friendly this spring?