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The Newest Yoga Mat is Made from the Strangest Source: Algae
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Algae—enemy of ponds, lakes, and middle-school bio quizzes everywhere. That is until recently, when scientists discovered that the long-derided life form could be used to produce environmentally sustainable foam. Clean tech company Algix and material development company Effekt just announced their big plans to take algae and use it in multiple lifestyle products, including footwear, sporting goods, and the universal favorite, the yoga mat. Read more: http://magazine.good.is/arti...

 
Adding These Foods to Your Diet May Improve Memory!
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Here are some foods you can add to your daily diet that have been shown to improve cognition: Blueberries: Berries contain anthocyanin, an antioxidant pigment that increases your ability to remember things. One three-month research study showed improved learning recall in older adults who drank blueberry juice to improved learning recall. Almonds: Almonds are an excellent brain food because they contain a protein component that boosts production of a nerve chemical shown to enhance memory. Dark chocolate: Varieties of dark chocolate that are comprised of at least 70-percent cocoa contain flavanols that increase blood flow to the brain. Extra-virgin olive oil: This type of olive oil contains a chemical called hydroxytyrosol that tends to increase messages to the brain and improves your memory. Green tea: You've probably heard about its antioxidant power, but green tea has also been shown to help reboot your memory.

 
Clean Power Plan Is Good for Our Children's Health
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There are many reasons to be committed to taking care of our environment, but as a parent, I have two very important ones: my son and daughter. Their lives, and their health, are so important to me, as all children's are. When we think about the choices we make for our kids, from healthy food to fun exercise, it's important to remember that the quality of air they breathe is just as important. We are shaping our world for them to live in, not just in some distant future, but today. That's why President Obama and our colleagues across the federal government just finalized a rule that will help leave the planet safer and healthier for our children and our grandchildren. The Clean Power Plan is a historic step in cutting carbon pollution from the largest source of emissions in our country. Here are five reasons our children need us to commit to creating a safer and healthier environment: Read more: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/s...

 
WATER FOR THE BEES...
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water_bees

Filling a pie pan with marbles and water.  The marbles give the bees a spot to land so that they don't drown when they come to drink......:)

 
The World’s First Solar Road Is Producing More Energy Than Expected
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In its first six months of existence, the world’s first solar road is performing even better than developers thought. The road, which opened in the Netherlands in November of last year, has produced more than 3,000 kilowatt-hours of energy — enough to power a single small household for one year, according to Al-Jazeera  America. The 230-foot stretch of road, which is embedded with solar cells that are protected by two layers of safety glass, is built for bike traffic, a use that reflects the road’s environmentally-friendly message and the cycling-heavy culture of the Netherlands. However, the road could withstand heavier traffic if needed, according to one of the project’s developers. So far, about 150,000 cyclists have ridden over the road. Arian de Bondt, director of Ooms Civiel, one of the companies working on the project, said that the developers were working on developing solar panels that could withstand large buses and vehicles. The SolaRoad, which connects the Amsterdam suburbs of Krommenie and Wormerveer, has been seen as a test by its creators — a stretch of bike lane that, if successful, could be used as a model for more roads and bike lanes. The researchers plan to conduct tests of the road over the next approximately two and a half years, to determine how much energy the road produces and how it stands up to bikers. By 2016, the road could be extended to 328 feet.

Read more: http://thinkprogress.org/climate/201.../

 
Use Junk Mail as Garden Mulch...
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Retain the moisture in your soil. One of the best ways to retain moisture in your soil is by using mulch. Not only will mulch assist in water retention, it will keep weeds at bay and add nutrients and matter to your soil profile. You can literally lay out junk mail or old newspapers on your garden as a mulch. This makes an excellent weed barrier and will have all the benefits of traditional mulch. But since this is a little aesthetically displeasing, you might also want to cover with a layer of leaves or other traditional mulch. Alternatively, you can also shred junk mail or old newspapers first and then lay them as mulch. This will break down easier.

 
How to Grow Food in a Drought
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As California braces for a parched, dry season ahead, many people may be reconsidering the idea of planting a fall vegetable garden at all. However, there are a number of tips to consider, that may still allow you to harvest fresh veggies from your backyard garden. Peas, greens, beets, and radishes will do just fine in the fall. Even plants that like full sun will appreciate just a little bit of afternoon shade if they're struggling with heat and limited water. Situate your garden so that they'll catch a little shade from trees you have on site. No trees? A patio umbrella or strategically placed shade cloth can help.

Consider experimenting with a method of deep watering. Submerge a porous vessel (terra cotta) in the ground near the base of your plants, leaving the top accessible. Fill with water, and it will slowly seep into the ground and be available as the plants need it. Consider deep watering with a drainage pipe or even a nursery pot buried upright next to plants. Instead of watering at the surface, water into the pipe or pot so the water goes straight to the roots. Keyhole gardens, are being used in dry climates as well, and have an active compost pile at their center. The central compost helps nourish the plants growing around it and acts as a source of moisture. Supplemental water goes right into the compost “well.” A soaker hose or drip irrigation system allows you to put water right where you want it. Invest in a simple timer and set it so that it goes off at night. That will give your plants a chance to drink up before the sun heats the ground, causing evaporation. Dry farming tomatoes is a method well-suited to drought. You do need good soil. Essentially, you'll water your tomato plants to get them established, then water sparingly as fruit matures. If you have access to logs, branches, and other natural debris, consider stacking natural material into a mound and planting on top of it. The decomposing matter turns into healthy soil that will hold moisture, requiring little or no irrigation by the second year. Choose vegetables that produce a lot of food per plant. While a broccoli plant provides just a single head, tomatoes, peppers, and eggplants, for example, will produce enough for many meals. Choose vegetables that have a short growing season. Beans, for instance, can produce a full crop in a relatively short amount of time, using less water than a crop that takes longer to mature. Corn is shallow rooted and not a great choice for growing during a drought. Make sure your soil incorporates lots of compost and will be able to hold onto what little moisture there is. Adding 3″ to 4″ inches of mulch will help prevent the soil surface from drying out. Try straw, leaves, grass clippings, or wood chips. Consider burying your organic kitchen waste alongside your plants, so, you're nourishing your plants and also adding a bit more moisture to the soil. Don't let water down the drain if you don't have to! Collect it and use it to water your plants. 1) Warming water for showering or dishwashing? Catch the water in a 5-gallon bucket. Keep a 5-gallon bucket in the shower with you while you're showering to catch some of that water. 2) Water used for cooking pasta, potatoes, or hard boiled eggs can be taken out to the garden once it’s cool. 3) Instead of rinsing dishes under running water, do it camp style. Rinse them in a dish pan, then use the water in the garden. 4) If you're bathing a baby, that water, too, can go out to the garden.

 
Weeds Can't Take The Heat!
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Everyone knows that using too much fertilizer, insecticide, herbicide, and fungicide on crops damages the environment, in particular, water resources. However, most of us do just that in our own gardens and produce the same type of pollution. Here is an alternative to chemical herbicide: Pour boiling water on the weeds. Using heat will cause them to turn brown within a few hours, much like the effect of using a contact herbicide with one major difference. There is no toxic residue and the area is immediately safe for children!

 
Are Wooden Pallets Safe? Find Out How They Were Treated...
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Wooden Pallets are used in all kinds of DIY home projects. USDA regulations require manufacturers to treat wooden pallets before shipping to prevent the spread of pathogens. They either treat pallets by fumigating them with methyl bromide, a toxic pesticide, or by heat-treating them in kilns. For reusing purposes, look for pallets stamped with an “HT”, which means they haven’t been exposed to chemicals (at least not in the treating process.) Avoid unmarked pallets or those with “MB” for methyl bromide.

 
TIPS FOR SAVING WATER OUTDOORS...
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water_saving_outdoors

Outdoors: Water early in the morning or later in the evening when temperatures are cooler. Save: 25 gallons/each time you water. Choose a water-efficient irrigation system such as drip irrigation for your trees, shrubs, and flowers. Remember to turn it off when it rains. Save: 15 gallons/each time you water. Plant drought-resistant trees and plants.Save: 30- 60 gallons/each time you water/1,000 sq. ft. Put a layer of mulch around trees and plants to reduce evaporation and keep the soil cool. Organic mulch also improves the soil and prevents weeds.Save: 20-30 gallons/each time you water/1,000 sq. ft. Use a broom to clean driveways, sidewalks and patios. Save: 8-18 gallons /minute. Check your sprinkler system frequently and adjust sprinklers so only your lawn is watered and not the house, sidewalk, or street. Water deeply but less frequently to create healthier and stronger landscapes. You can invest in a water broom which attaches to your hose but uses a combination of air and water pressure to aid cleaning. Water brooms can use as little as 2.8 gallons per minute (gpm)to remove dirt, food spills, leaves, and litter from concrete and asphalt while a standard hose typically uses 5 to 20 gpm. Wash cars/boats (if you must) with a bucket, sponge, and hose with self-closing nozzle. Save: 8-18 gallons/minute.

 
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