Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Baking Soda (Again)

1. Wash your fruits and vegetables
Dissolve a few tablespoons of baking soda in a bowl of cool water. Soak the fruits or vegetables for 10 minutes and rinse.

2. Deodorize your fridge or freezer
Place an open box of soda in your fridge or freezer to let it absorb the odors. Replace after 3 months.

3. Deodorize your cutting board
Clean and remove odors from your cutting board with the help of a sponge and a paste of baking soda and water.

4. Remove coffee stains from cups
Dampen the cup and start rubbing baking soda with a cotton cloth until the stain is gone. Rinse. Baking soda works great against tea stains as well.

5. Unclog drains
Pour 1 cup of baking soda followed by 1 cup of hot vinegar. Wait 15 minutes before flushing the drain with hot water. Repeat a few times if necessary.

6. Polish silver
A fast and easy way to polish silver, stainless steel and chrome is to put a pinch of baking soda on a damp cotton cloth and polish. The results will be immediate.

7. Remove stains
To remove wine, oil or grease stains from fabrics just sprinkle baking soda and leave for a few hours then brush off. If necessary, rub again with a paste of soda and water.

8. Use as fabric softener
Baking soda can successfully replace your fabric softener. Add half a cup to the rinse cycle and you will never think of going back to store-bought softener. It is also great for sensitive skin.

9. Exfoliate
Baking soda is the perfect exfoliator, able to remove dead skin cells from your skin. Just wash your face with lukewarm water, pour a teaspoon of baking soda on your palm and massage your face gently with circular movements for about 5 minutes. Rinse with cold water.

10. Brush your teeth
Baking soda can be used not just for cleaning your teeth but also as a natural whitener. You should be careful though, because it is abrasive and might hurt your gums, so do not press to hard.

Baking soda can be used in all spheres of life, from treating different disease to extinguishing fires. Its universal qualities as well as the fact that it can replace dangerous environmental pollutants we use on a daily basis make it my all time favorite and I hope yours too!
-repost via EcoEtsy.com_

Sunday, January 1, 2012

Homes Resistant to Bullets and Earthquakes

This fascinating piece is compliments of  Who, as usual, shares with such generosity.  What caught my eye and my head was that these structures are resistant to both bullets and earthquakes!

© Andreas Froese/ECOTEC
Thousands of pieces of trash that would otherwise be clogging waterways and landfills in Nigeria have been turned into sturdy, and surprisingly attractive, construction materials in the village of Yelwa, where the country's first plastic-bottle house is drawing curious visitors and plenty of press.
"Hundreds of people -- including government officials and traditional leaders -- have been coming to see how the [house's] walls are built in the round architectural shape popular in northern Nigeria.
Stronger Than Conventional Construction
The bottles are actually filled with dry soil or construction waste, not sand (an "unnecessary expense"), John Haley of ECOTEC, the firm that is training local masons in the technique, told in an email. They are then laid in rows like bricks and bound together with mud, producing a sturdy, well-insulated, and inexpensive three-room structure that is resistant to both bullets and earthquakes.

© Andreas Froese/ECOTEC
"In Nigeria millions of plastic bottles are dumped into waterways and landfill each year causing pollution, erosion, irrigation blockages, and health problems. Bottle houses take this dangerous waste out of the environment and make it useful," the environmental blog Eco Nigeria wrote earlier this year as the construction was in progress.


This is a short post....just a question.  Please, what’s the key detail lacking from all of these subsidies purported to ensure a “safe and secure” energy future?  
No matter how you define that nebulous term, fossil fuel subsidies are about increasing supply, not encouraging efficiency or reducing the external costs to human health and the environment.