With fast fashion and quick turnover key commercial ingredients of today’s garment and apparel industry, excess textile production is prompting the sector to gravitate towards more recycling and re-use of materials, to conserve energy, increase sustainability and lower raw material costs. (more…)
Healthcare-associated infections (HAI) are defined as infections not present and without evidence of incubation at the time of admission to a healthcare setting. As a better reflection of the diverse healthcare settings currently available to patients, the term healthcare-associated infections replaced old ones such as nosocomial, hospital-acquired or hospital-onset infections. Within hours after admission, a patient’s flora begins to acquire characteristics of the surrounding bacterial pool. Most infections that become clinically evident after 48 hours of hospitalization are considered hospital-acquired. Infections that occur after the patient is discharged from the hospital can be considered healthcare-associated if the organisms were acquired during the hospital stay. (more…)
Spalding Hospital sits on Boston Harbor in Charlestown. (Photo: Robin Lubbock/WBUR)
In an effort to stabalize energy costs hospitals nationwide are investing in energy efficiency and renewable energy. Host Steve Curwood checks out the innovative design of the new Spaulding hospital with John Messervy Director of Capital and Facilities Planning for Partners’ HealthCare. (more…)
University of Guelph researcher Atsuko Negishi is investigating a novel and unlikely source of natural fibres that may one day lessen our dependence on petroleum: hagfish slime.
The textile industry needs an affordable, sustainable alternative to oil-based polymers, and a recent study shows that hagfish slime protein threads have the potential to be spun and woven into novel biomaterials.
Hagfishes are an ancient group of eel-like, bottom-dwelling animals that have remained relatively unchanged for more than 300 million years. When threatened, hagfishes secrete a gelatinous slime containing mucous and tens of thousands of protein threads. These threads belong to the “intermediate filament” family of proteins, and they have remarkable mechanical properties that rival those of spider silks. (more…)
Pepper – the Eco Friendly Dog
By Gia Machlin
This is Part I of a two-part post on how consumers can use Eco Labels to distinguish the green from the greenwash.
After years of making fun of dog owners in the city, I became one myself: a city dweller with a canine friend. Meet Pepper. Of course now I think having a dog in the city is the best thing since sliced bread, but I still feel somewhat ridiculous picking up after Pepper does her business on the sidewalk. Luckily we have those tidy little poop bags to help us out and keep the mess to a minimum. I realize that using an old newspaper is probably more eco friendly, and I may just switch to that, but as I was getting used to this dog walking concept, using the bags just seemed much less disgusting.
So I walked into the pet store and asked for biodegradable poop bags, and the clerk pointed me to some bags hanging in a display case. On the packaging, there was a picture of the earth with some recycling arrows around it and the words “earth friendly.” If I didn’t happen to be in the sustainability field, I might have taken this information at face value and bought the bags. But I didn’t recognize the symbol as representing a reputable eco-label and I looked further. Nowhere on the packaging did the product claim to be biodegradable, compostable, or made of renewable materials. In fact, the bags were, as far as I could tell, no different than any other plastic poop bag. But I’m sure the manufacturer fooled a few customers into believing their product was “greener” than the next. How is this possible?
It’s possible, because there is very little regulation around what companies can claim as “green,” “eco friendly,” or “earth friendly.” Not that there isn’t any regulation – in 1992 the Federal Trade Commission came out with the Guides for the Use of Environmental Marketing Claims also known as the “Green Guide“. This regulation has been updated several times, and in October 2010 the FTC proposed major updates to this section of the Federal Register (the proposed updates have yet to be finalized). So this is all good, and the FTC has started to enforce these rules, but the rules are new, and in some cases unclear, and the door is still open for all the “greenwashers” and their claims for now.
So, as a consumer, knowing that the door is still open for marketers to make all kinds of green claims, how do you know what’s green? Well the first thing to know is that nothing is truly “green.” Everything we buy has some kind of environmental footprint. A product’s footprint is calculated using many factors: the material used to make it, the energy used to manufacture it, the gasoline used to transport it, the electricity needed to operate it, and the waste created when ultimatelydisposing of it. But a product can be “greener” than another. (The most environmentally friendly option is not to buy anything new at all and reuse what’s already out there!) So how do we know what’s “greener?” Currently, we at EcoPlum believe the best option is to buy products that have are made of recycled materials, have been certified green by independent organizations or that have earned a reputable eco-label.
Now, how do you know which Eco-Label is reputable? That’s the topic of Part II of this post. But, for now, here is a list of eco-labels we have found be run by independent non-profit or government third parties that appear to have no vested interest in the products or companies they certify.
[Note: the EcoPlum Online Boutique carries only eco friendly products that have been certified green, have a third party eco-label, or are made of recycled/upcycled materials.]
Gia is the President and CEO of EcoPlum, Where it Pays to Buy Green®. EcoPlum is the green shopping rewards site with eco friendly products and green living ideas that makes it fun, easy and rewarding to go green. Under its loyalty program, buying green at EcoPlum online earns EcoChipz rewards points, good for coupons in its shop or donations to environmental causes.
How to Store Vegetables & Fruit Without Plastic
So you’ve got all these great fruits and vegetables and now we’re going to help you keep them at their freshest with these tips. These tips are from the Berkley Farmer’s Market which is a Zero Waste market! Here is a printable PDF of their original tip sheet. In the works here at Washington’s Green Grocer is a switch from plastic bags (although we use as few as we can get away with, while still keeping your produce from getting battered on it’s way to you) to only recyclable paper and reuseable cloth bags!
HOW TO STORE VEGETABLES WITHOUT PLASTIC
Artichokes‐ place in an airtight container sealed, with light moisture.
Asparagus‐ place them loosely in a glass or bowl upright with water at room temperature. (Will keep for a week outside the fridge)
Avocados‐ place in a paper bag at room temp. To speed up their ripening‐ place an apple in the bag with them.
Arugula‐ arugula, like lettuce, should not stay wet! Dunk in cold water and spin or lay flat to dry. Place dry arugula in an open container, wrapped with a dry towel to absorb any extra moisture.
Basil‐ is difficult to store well. Basil does not like the cold, or to be wet for that matter. The best method here is an airtight container/jar loosely packed with a small damp piece of paper inside‐left out on a cool counter.
Beans, shelling‐ open container in the fridge, eat ASAP. Some recommend freezing them if not going to eat right away
Beets‐ cut the tops off to keep beets firm, (be sure to keep the greens!)by leaving any top on root vegetables draws moisture from the root, making them loose flavor and firmness. Beets should be washed and kept in and open container with a wet towel on top.
Beet greens‐ place in an airtight container with a little moisture.
Broccoli‐ place in an open container in the fridge or wrap in a damp towel before placing in the fridge.
MantraMeds & Earthspun Apparel had a wonderful day at MUSC’s Earth Day festival! Here are some pictures of other vendors who were there with us.
MantraMeds Sustainable Medical Apparel & Earthspun Apparel tees
MUSC Earth Day festival
Wonderful coordinator for the event
Had a great talk w/ these guys about Earthspun Apparel's spinner in Kings Mountain who uses solar panels
The local animal shelter brought around some adorable kittens and dogs.
Yoga House - new studio in Charleston
We even had some live music
Clemson Recycles’ Picture Green 2012 Art Show was a hit!
See our entry about the great article from the Tiger here http://mantrameds.wordpress.com/2012/04/02/clemson-pictures-a-green-world-sustainable-art-exhibition-encourages-recycling-materials/
This is Red, by Jena Heaton. He was a performance art piece (marionette) made out of red bull cans.
These are upcycled art pieces by Kevin Anderson
Recycle Action by Sierra Kramer
The lovely Kate Ripley, coordinator of this event
Solid Green table featuring 100% Recycled X-Ray Gray shirts by Earthspun Apparel!
Clemson pictures a green world:
Sustainable art exhibition encourages recycling materials.
Find original article here: http://thetigernews.com/news.php?aid=7639&sid=1
by KATE RIPLEY
This article originally appeared in The Tiger on March 30, 2012
Where does recycling go after it’s thrown into the bin? On Thursday, April 5, recycled cans, newspaper and bottles will reappear in the form of artistic masterpieces at the Picture Green 2012 Sustainable Art Exhibition. Local and student artists will showcase artwork made with a sustainable or nature theme and made from recycled materials.
From 3 p.m. until 5 p.m. in the Hendrix Center’s David Peebles Room, students, faculty, staff and community members are encouraged to check out artwork crafted from everyday materials, like soda cans, milk bottles, metal tins and more. Works include life-size sculptures, paintings, jewelry and musical instruments, all made by local and student artists.
A judge from The Arts Center, a local, nonprofit community arts center in Clemson devoted to making art education accessible to the community, will critique the works. The first-place winner will receive a generous gift certificate to a local art supply store, and second- and third-place artists will win Solid Green gift packages. Attendees can enter a raffle to win hand-crafted jewelry made from natural and precious stones.
Participants will not be selling their work during the exhibition; however, attendees can make arrangements to sell their pieces at a later time. The idea of Picture Green started in 2009 when Julia Fielding, a former Clemson undergraduate and MBA student, met with her professors to create a sustainable event for the arts. In past years, professors and other speakers were asked to present talks concerning “green” issues such as renewable energy, sustainable business development and green building. Films promoting and discussing sustainable topics were also screened in McKissick Theater.
This year, Picture Green will be associated with the nationwide recycling competition RecycleMania. Clemson Recycling Services will celebrate the University’s results and hope to inspire more Tigers to reduce their impact on society. RecycleMania has been a success this year, as Recycling Services has promoted the competition through various service events and activities. These events include the No Impact Man screening in McKissick Theatre followed by a discussion on sustainability. Various student groups also volunteered to perform a waste audit on a few buildings on campus.
Julie Conard, a senior architecture major and art minor, is excited to be a participant in the exhibition.
“So many of our art and design projects are about issues of sustainability,” Conard said. “I am excited to participate in RecycleMania’s art show because it not only gives me the chance to show my work publicly, but it also allows us as artists to partner with SolidGreen, who are working to achieve the vision of our pieces.”
For more information, visit the Clemson Recycles Facebook page or http://www.clemson.edu/facilities/recycling.
A BIG thank you to TOWN magazine for featuring Earthspun Apparel in their latest issue!
By TOWN Staff
MARCH 29, 2012
Drink in these hip tees made of recycled bottles
Bottles have an extended shelf life—a closet shelf. Greenville-based Earthspun Apparel found a way to make t-shirts from high-quality, ring-spun yarns produced with recycled polyester fibers, made from plastic bottles, discarded X-Ray film, and recycled cotton, to produce 100-percent-recycled apparel.
The green, brown, blue, and grey shirt colors are the actual bottle colors, not dyes, and include Soda Pop Green, Beer Bottle Brown, Water Bottle Blue, and X-Ray Grey. A black tee made from recycled food trays will be available soon.
To start the process, plastic bottles recycled by consumers are brought to local recycling centers and sorted by color. The bottles are converted into fibers that are blended with recycled cotton and spun into yarn used to create the t-shirt fabric, which feels soft and natural. One Earthspun t-shirt saves about six plastic bottles from the landfill.
The t-shirts are made of 65-percent-recycled polyester and 35-percent-recycled cotton. “Sustainability is important to us, and the ability to eliminate production steps and use waste to create our t-shirts saves energy, conserves natural resources, and diverts waste from landfills,” says Earthspun partner Jerry Wheeler. We’ll drink to that. More information at earthspunapparel.com
CRA’s 22nd Annual Conference and Trade Show
“Recycling on the Rise”
March 19-23, Grove Park Inn, Asheville, NC
The CRA is pleased to present our 22nd Annual Conference and Trade Show “Recycling on the Rise” to be held March 19-23, 2012 at the Grove Park Inn in Asheville, NC. You will find this theme throughout the conference program, as we explore new strategies, new materials, new opportunities and new horizons.
Join us for the Southeast’s premier recycling conference at the hotel that defined Southern Hospitality.
Earthspun Apparel will be at Recycling on the Rise in Asheville this week. Stop in and see our kewl recycled tees!
MantraMeds Sustainable Medical Apparel believes going Green should not just be about consumer items. It’s about a lifestyle, a full commitment to sustainability. Now that spring is here, it’s time to spruce up your yard. Take Laura Ruby’s advice in from this Youtube interview.
Waylon talks with Laura about 10 green things we can do with our backyards for spring:
Click the image above or go to: http://youtu.be/pf463UrZ2bY
Laura gives tips on how to make your outdoor spaces not just beautiful, but useful as well. While lawns are very popular in the U.S., they use tremendous resources to maintain in most areas without much return on the investment. Laura explains ways for homeowners as well as renters to enjoy gardening and reap the benefits of digging in the dirt.
Laura Ruby is an avid foodie enthusiast, sniffing out fresh, local and yummy food wherever she goes. She worked as the Garden Coordinator for the Growe Foundation for the past three and a half years installing gardens and teaching garden curriculum at Boulder Valley elementary schools. She is also the founder and owner of YummyYards, an edible landscaping company, working to co-create more functioning, self-sufficient landscapes, and is a co-facilitator and teacher at the Lyons Permaculture Design Course at the Farmette. When not teaching about growing food, you can usually find her in a garden somewhere. -Kate Bartolotta
Clemson students are working to reduce their carbon footprint during tailgating activities at Clemson athletic events. And they want others to join the movement.
The tailgating culture at Clemson is huge. Families and friends gather around the trunk of their cars sharing food, playing games and sporting orange — it’s the image of the traditional Clemson football season. But behind this image, a Creative Inquiry team made up of civil engineers and architecture majors saw a problem. Thousands of cars make their way to Death Valley, trash litters the parking lot and football fans end up consuming a lot more energy than they realize. These students saw the problem and found a solution: trailgating.
The concept of “trailgating” is to reduce the carbon footprint of Clemson students and fans while maintaining the traditions associated with school pride and sporting events. During last season’s homecoming game against Boston College, the Creative Inquiry (undergraduate research) team introduced their sustainable and sufficient trailgate. It is a foldout trailer, transported by bike, that includes everything a Clemson tailgater needs — a cooler, grill, table and chairs. But it uses no gas, wastes little energy and takes up a lot less space in the parking lot. The team is currently designing a larger unit to accommodate up to six families.
Carlie Metzger, a member of the Creative Inquiry team, said, “We are trying to encourage Clemson students, alumni and fans to tailgate in a more sustainable manner.”
Said Metzger, “People don’t realize that when everyone starts living sustainably, the impact can be huge.”
From Mother Nature Network’s Josh Lew (via HuffPost Green)
In 2010, Vancouver set a high standard forenvironmentally friendly Olympics with sustainability initiatives launched in conjunction with the Winter Games. Now, London’s Olympic organizers have an ambitious plan to host the “first truly sustainable” games later this year. That’s a bold goal, considering all the other tasks and issues that go with being the host of the world’s highest-profile sporting event. Most athletes will have a few minutes or even a few seconds in the spotlight this summer, but London will be on camera for nearly three weeks, with the user-friendliness of its venues, basic services for visitors and event security under the media microscope.
Some of the planned green features, like a giant wind turbine, have already been scrapped, and the unforgiving British media have brought the environmental commitment of the games’ organizers into question. However, green-minded London visitors will be able to appreciate the green features that are definitely going to be a part of the 2012 Olympic experience.
Read full article here: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/14/london-olympics-2012-sustainable-games_n_1343099.html?ref=green&ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009
From Earth911′s Alexis Petru:
With April’s tax deadline quickly approaching, don’t forget that many purchases you made last year to benefit the environment and your wallet may also qualify for a tax break. Whether you bought a plug-in hybrid, made home energy efficiency retrofits or donated to an environmental charity, check out Earth911’s guide to 2011’s green tax incentives.
List and captions courtesy of Earth911
View full slideshow at: http://www.huffingtonpost.com/2012/03/05/green-tax-write-offs_n_1321319.html?ref=green&ncid=edlinkusaolp00000009
Just in case you missed it, America Recycles Day published their winning video contest entries from 2011 today. The top two entries were raps about recycling! Check out these as well as the other entries at http://www.youtube.com/americarecyclesday.
Click image below to view the winning video OR go to the URL beneath the image
Winning video: http://youtu.be/PkPIjeq5aWg
Solid Green, a student group at Clemson University that promotes sustainability, is hosting Dirty Jobs – an event dedicated educating students about recycling on Clemson’s campus. Students who participate will receive a “Peace, Love, Recycling” recycled earthspun t-shirt! Get involved at your alma mater to help support groups like this one.
A few of us here at MantraMeds are Clemson University Alumni. Clemson has several student groups dedicated to sustainability. Check them out on Facebook to support their initiatives or to get similar groups started at your alma mater!
Clemson Recycles - Our mission is to promote recycling through coordination and sponsoring events to raise awareness about recycling at Clemson University and in the community. Like Clemson Recycles on facebook!
Solid Green – The mission of the Solid Green Club (SGC) is to function as an active extension of the Clemson University Solid Green Committee (SG) by bringing about a heightened awareness of environmental issues, promoting a “Green Clemson” community and coordinating and sponsoring educational and service activities that further the community’s commitment to a more sustainable environment. Like Solid Green on Facebook!
Students for Environmental Action -Mission is to promote sustainability through advocacy, education, and funding projects that address environmentalism. Like Students for Environmental Action on Facebook!
Consumers would increase sustainable apparel purchasing if only they could find it, according to a survey by Ryan Partnership Chicago and Mambo Sprouts Marketing.
Some 69 percent of consumers considered sustainability at least sometimes when purchasing clothing in 2011 and shoppers intend to double their eco-apparel purchases this year, according to the 2012 Styling Sustainability survey.
But access to green apparel is hampering take-up. A third of consumers who don’t regularly consider sustainability in their apparel purchases said sustainable clothing wasn’t available where they shop. About one in four said they didn’t even know where to purchase sustainable clothing, according to the survey.
When shoppers do buy sustainable clothing, 57 percent said they became aware of eco-attributes through product tags, while 37 percent credited in-store information. Some 61 percent of shoppers expressed interest in an apparel sustainability rating or index.
Read full article here: http://www.environmentalleader.com/2012/02/09/lack-of-eco-clothing-hampers-sales/
Show your Valentine (and the planet) a little love by choosing a gift that gives back. Photo: Flickr/Valdiney Pimenta
As you’re browsing the Web for that perfect Valentine’s Day gift this week, why not choose a gift that gives back? Here are three fun ways to help the environment and your community while showing your honey you care.
Read full article here: http://earth911.com/news/2012/02/08/valentines-day-gifts-for-charity/
The MantraMeds website has some exciting new features to make shopping online that much easier. With additions like a new fit guide and videos of our model sporting each scrub, you’ll feel like you’re in a store trying our scrubs on!
To assist you in choosing the right size the 1st time we have created the Mantrameds Sizing Guide. Choose the style you like and find the fit type description (this is listed in the product description). Now refer to the fit guide drawings and descriptions to make sure you will like the garment’s fit. You can customize the fit to your personal preference easily by sizing up or down.
Read more for examples and pictures!
MantraMeds‘ Colorado and South Carolina teams are getting together this week to discuss exciting happenings for our sustainable scrub brand! A few things to look forward to: new tops, new colors, more pockets, and better fit! We always welcome suggestions from the public. Respond to this blog or write on our Facebook page with any ideas you may have for this Made in USA, eco-friendly scrub brand!