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Instruments Made From Trash May 28, 2013

Filed under: Keep the Ground Clean,Make Your Own,Recycling — rolemodelsforme @ 12:13 pm
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Reusing is a great thing to do. It saves a lot of garbage and can be used for really fun purposes. Reusing items is a great thing to do and I have an example.

At my school, the first graders do an annual event where they create instruments using only garbage. I think this is a really great idea, for fun and for eco-friendliness. The event is done in first grade, but that didn’t stop me from using this idea to create instruments from garbage at home. I really enjoy doing it. Some of these instruments can be simple, others can be really sophisticated. No matter how you make your instrument, it is really fun to make it and play on it. I’m now going to show off some really cool instruments from Google images!

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Images: Copyright © Google Images

Thanks!!

-Hallie

Bonsai Contributor

 

The Problem with Microwave Popcorn May 19, 2013

You probably already know that microwave popcorn is full of fat and salt, not to mention the fake butter. In my opinion, I find it to be absolutely disgusting, but the reasons why you shouldn’t eat it are much more serious than that. Workers in the factories making and packaging the popcorn have developed an incredibly rare form of lung cancer. The cancer has been caused just by inhaling the fumes- think of what can happen when you’re eating what produces those fumes! And if that’s not bad enough, the lining of the bag is made with PFOA, or  perfluorooctanoic acid, which is also linked to cancer and other conditions such as infertility.

Good news, though. Since raw kernels (meant to be popped on the stove or in a special popper) aren’t made with all those dangerous chemicals, they’re a-okay to eat, and can even be considered a health food. Air popped corn has a very low calorie count, while stovepopped corn with oil can raise that count, but not by too much. It contains fiber, as well as complex carbohydrates.

Not only is it bad for us, the consumers, but it is too late for the workers in the factories- they have already gotten the cancer. The companies and manufacturers that created such an unhealthy recipe should have made one healthier, so it would be safer for the factory workers and the buyers.

I did a bit of research on microwave popcorn brands and came across a site that advertised its popcorn as being ‘healthy and full of fiber.’ Granted, they also have PFOA-free bags, but that’s just one step towards creating food that is safe for those who come in contact with it. Microwave popcorn is full of dangerous chemicals and if you value your health and the health of factory workers, I suggest you stay far, far away.

Ceej

 

Spotlight on Website: Sevenly Clothing May 14, 2013

Filed under: Human Rights,Spotlight on Website — mochi @ 3:28 am

Not only does Sevenly have some of the most beautiful and unique clothing I’ve ever seen, each week, they donate a portion of their money to a different cause. They also offer natural baby products made of organic muslin, and send email updates on which causes are coming up next, or what’s on sale. While I’ve being subscribed for a small while, I’ve seen this company cover deadly diseases, disabled children, brain damage, sex trafficking, and cleft palate disorders. They sell artful and awesome clothing that donates to a good cause. Buy now and don’t forget to follow the Sevenly blog!

http://blog.sevenly.org/tagged/sevenly

http://www.sevenly.org/

Enjoy your clothing. Next time I won’t be late with the post!

 

Stop Poisoning Water: Keeping our Drinking Water Clean

Filed under: Going Green,Health,Water Crisis — Mary @ 1:15 am
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So What?

We all need water. A human being can’t go three days without drinking any water. Animals need water. Plants need water. Most things that are living need water. But the thing is, water is not a resource that we can just always have. We have to work hard to keep enough water for everybody. Water may seem like a never-ending resource, something that would always be there, but think of it like this. 70% of the earth is made up of water. Of that, about 3% of that is fresh water, and 1% of that fresh water is accessible.

So, yeah, water isn’t something that’s going to last forever, so we have to conserve it. But we also have to do more than conserving it. Conserving water is only the first step. Taking shorter showers, turning the water off when you’re brushing your teeth and flushing the toilet only as much as you have to are all good things. But in the world we live in, the water we conserve may not actually stay drinkable for long. The chemicals we have in our shampoo, nail polish, gasoline and more are seeping into our water through a very simple and possibly easy to prevent process.

How Does Our Water Get Polluted?

First, you don’t clean up after yourself. All around us is waste on the ground: you’ve seen it. The gasoline in puddles. The soda cans on the ground. The dropped things we don’t bother to pick up. The dog poop that we must have missed. Even the pesticides that are on crops and gardens and lawns. At the time, these things seem trivial — you can put them off until tomorrow, say it won’t do any damage overnight, you’ll do it later. But what if it rains? Where will all that stuff go? What if it’s not there in the morning?

I’ll tell you. It washed away. It slipped over the fields, ran into the sewers, got into the water.

Some of those things have very dangerous chemicals. They get pushed into our water, and they poison it. Some of these things are exposed to us at the tap, and some of these things are removed. But none of these things are safe. They harm us, and try as we might to conserve water, all those efforts will go to waste if we poison it, if we pollute it.

 

How Can We Keep Our Water From Being Polluted?

It’s actually very simple, though you may not believe it. All you have to do is pick up after yourself. Don’t use pesticides. Don’t procrastinate and tell yourself you’ll do it tomorrow. (And this is coming from one of the biggest procrastinators to roam the earth, so you have to know it’s important.) Don’t be like Annie and say, “Tomorrow, tomorrow, I’ll do it, tomorrow, that’s only a day away!” There are other steps you can take, too. You can make sure you’re buying things that don’t really have chemicals. Don’t litter. Pick up other people’s litter. Protest coating things in harmful chemicals.

And, so we can have that water to potentially poison, you should conserve water. Conserve conserve conserve. We don’t want to waste water, and we don’t want to waste the water we refrained from wasting. It’s like stopping an algebraic equation after you’ve narrowed it down to 6 = 2x. You still need to divide by two to make it 3 = x. We don’t want to stop trying to have enough to drink just by conserving. We also have to do that little extra step of dividing so that we can solve it, get an A+, and be happy. Oh, yeah, and drink enough, too.

 

Spotlight on Religion: Jainism May 8, 2013

It’s been a while, but it’s finally time for our third spotlight on religion. This time, as you can tell from the title, we’re going to be talking about is Jainism.

Religion: Jainism is a religion that believes in non-violence to all living things, and one of the oldest religions on the planet. The founder is unknown, but the beginning of this religion has been traced to the Indus Valley Civilization, though nobody knows for sure.  Jainism used to have a great many worshipers, but now there aren’t as many (only 4.2 million) because of the growing popularity of Hinduism.

Where it is Practiced: Jainism, as I mentioned before, has been traced to have started somewhere in the Indus Valley Civilization, which was in current-day India. It is now mostly practiced in India, but immigrants have spread/now practice it in countries like Belgium, the US, Canada, China, Japan, and Singapore.

Beliefs: Jainism’s main belief (or, as it are more commonly referred to, principle) is non-violence (ahimsa). Non-violence is seen as the biggest religious duty for all Jains, which means that it is the most important thing for them to follow/do. Jains strictly hold in place this view, which means that they are vegetarians, pacifists, and don’t fight each other with fists — ever. They also try not to injure plants more than they have to, and consider arguments and harsh words another form of violence. However, Jains know that they cannot go through life without hurting anything, so they rate the thing from 1 to 5 based on how many senses they have. Things with more senses are valued more and they do their best not to hurt them more than  those with less senses.

Practices: Jainism has many rituals and practices. The Navkar Mantra is one of their most important prayers. They do not mention names or ask for favors, but they do try their best to respect all beings with the prayer. They may thank them for what they have done or compliment them or something like that. Jains preform prayers like this so that they can break barriers of worldly desires/attachments and therefore help to liberate their soul. They also follow six rituals to liberate souls, as well. Some important festivals in Jainism are Paryushana, Mahavira Jayanti, and Diwali. During these festivals, Jains don’t really party like you’d expect — they mostly fast and meditate and pray. Meditation and fasting are a huge part of the Jainism practices, which also, I suppose, helps them to liberate their souls. In that way, they are similar to Hindus — they try to be good in this life so they can reach nirvana, or the point where they don’t have to do life over anymore and can simply be with God.

If you want to find out more about Jainism, I used this Wikipedia page to do my research:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Jainism

 

Spotlight on Website: Common Dreams May 5, 2013

Filed under: Spotlight on Website — mochi @ 9:41 pm
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Oh my gosh. It has been so long. I’m sorry for depriving you all of your spotlights! This was supposed to be a weekly thing, and then it turned into…

Well. commondreams.org is a non-profit newscenter lot like Bonsai in the way that it wants to take steps towards ‘building a progressive community’, as stated on the homepage. The authors  write articles about hot topics and share facts and opinions about what’s going on today in the world. While I may not share their opinions all the time, the Bonsai staff members, and everyone, are all entitled to their own opinion, and what makes our community so great is that we all accept each other and make compromises. This is definitely one of the big parts of building a progressive community- accepting others and being open minded. Common Dreams defines the news it puts out as being dependable, something you can rely on every day. It’s certainly interesting, and it gives insight into topics that you might not know very much about.

 

Common Dreams

You can find out more about Common Dreams at http://www.commondreams.org/about-us or simply commondreams.org

Let’s all educate ourselves and work together and build a progressive world community.

Ceej

 

Canada’s Wildlife Area Safe- For Now May 4, 2013

Filed under: Air Purifying,Going Green,Government — mochi @ 4:03 pm
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TRTL Breaking Ground - David Hassan, Cenovus E...

 

Cenovus Energy, an energy company in Canada, suggested to the government a plan of drilling 1,275 gas wells in a national wildlife area, which would double the number that was there before, and of course double the environmental impact. Thankfully, the environment minister of Alberta vetoed the proposal, saying that the impact would be too negative to proceed with the plan. The Minister, Peter Kent, declared that the government was strengthening environmental protection and working on plans for wildlife recovery. He also said, “There would be significant disruption, I think, even with a new proposal.”

 

He said this in response to Cenovus’ new plea for a revised suggestion, and made the eco-lovers proud when he did so. Opposing people were not impressed, but he didn’t waver under their criticism. He also announced new plans for reduced C02 emission from vehicles, which wasn’t a popular idea with environmental critics. The Alberta Wilderness association and various environmentalists around the country- and the neighboring countries- are very proud of him for sticking with the welfare of flora and fauna and not only worrying about reputation or economy and production. However, government tends to think about government more than the environment- which is what’s really important. Canada’s wildlife area is safe for now, but when plans like the oil drilling one by Cenovus rest in the hands of politicians, the environment is always in jeopardy.

 

http://ca.finance.yahoo.com/news/environment-minister-says-no-cenovus-energy-gas-project-141202533.html

 

 

Ceej

 

 

 
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