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Naked Shake Protein Powder Review: A High-Protein Shake with Healthy Fats

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pb and blueberry naked shake by naked nutrition

Are you looking for a high-quality protein powder to help you with your fitness goals? If so, you may want to consider giving Naked Shake protein powder from Naked Nutrition a try.

This powder is made with natural ingredients and contains 20 grams of protein per serving, as well as 2.5 grams of healthy fats from MCT oil. Its low-calorie profile also makes it a good choice for those looking to fuel their workouts while managing their calorie intake.

As someone who eats and drinks a lot of protein powder, I was excited to review a sample of the Naked Shake in the Peanut Butter and Blueberry flavor.

Keep reading to find out more about this protein powder and whether or not it is right for you.

 

What is the Naked Shake?

Naked Nutrition’s Naked Shake protein powder is a great option for those looking for a quality protein powder that blends easily into a shake.

The protein in Naked Shake comes from pea protein, which is a high-quality plant-based protein source that is easily absorbed by the body. In addition to protein, Naked Shake also contains 20 essential vitamins and minerals, making it a complete meal replacement. What’s more, like all Naked Nutrition products, Naked Shake is free of artificial flavors, sweeteners, and colors.

 

Features and Benefits

Vegan Protein Powder

Naked Shake protein powder differs from traditional whey protein powders in that it is made with pea protein, making this a plant-based product that can be enjoyed by those on a vegan diet. The pea protein is sourced from US and Canadian farms.

 

Low Calorie, Low Sugar

One serving of the PB Blueberry Naked Shake is 140 calories, 20g protein, 2.5g fat, 9g of carbs, and 5g of sugar. The sugar is organic coconut sugar, with additional calorie-free sweetness from monk fruit extract.

naked shake nutrition info

 

Healthy Fats

Naked Shake also includes MCT oil in its ingredients, which gives the shake a boost of healthy fats. MCT oil is a type of oil that is derived from coconut oil. Unlike other types of oils, MCT oil is composed of medium chain fatty acids, which the body can easily convert into ketones and use for energy. MCT oil has become popular in recent years as a source of healthy fats and as a way to boost ketone levels.

 

Amino Acids, Vitamins, and Minerals

Naked Shake includes a complete amino acid profile, and 20 essential vitamins and minerals, which are essential for your body’s growth and repair. Amino acids are the building blocks of protein, and they are essential for muscle growth.

naked shake amino acids

Delicious Flavors

Naked Shake comes in a variety of flavors, including peanut butter and blueberry (which I tried), as well as lemon blueberry, strawberry banana, and the standard vanilla and chocolate, giving you options for snacks or post-workout shakes. The powder can be easily mixed with water or milk, and can also be added to smoothies or baking recipes.

 

No artificial flavors, colors, or sweeteners

As I mentioned before, Naked Shake is free of artificial flavors, colors, and sweeteners. This makes it a healthier option compared to other protein powders on the market that may contain these additives.

 

My Thoughts on the Naked Shake

I tried the Peanut Butter and Blueberry flavor of Naked Shake and was very impressed with the results. For anyone familiar with PB2 or similar products, the PB Blueberry flavor looks and smells similar.

Blendability: I made my shake according to the instructions, using low-calorie cashew milk rather than milk or water and mixing it up in the Ninja Blender. The powder mixed up well without any clumping and maintained a consistency similar to the cashew milk, i.e. not much thicker.

Flavor: The taste was outstanding. If you’re a fan of peanut butter, this is a great choice. It is essentially a protein-packed PB+J sandwich in a glass. The peanut butter has some saltiness to it, which I enjoyed, but found you can cut it down if it’s not to your liking by adding some frozen fruit to the shake.

Protein Density: The PB Blueberry Naked Shake scored a 9 on the Proteinful score, and other flavors scored a 10, meaning it has a very high protein density compared to other sugar-laden shake powders.

naked nutrition naked shake proteinful score

 

Satiation: In terms of satiation, I didn’t expect the Naked Shake would be enough of a meal replacement to fill me up. As a test, I substituted my usual breakfast of toast and eggs for a serving of the Naked Shake – and nothing else. I was surprised to find how satiating it was, carrying me through to lunch. I suspect this is partly due to the MCT oil in the shake. Although it adds some additional calories to the drink, the healthy fats made me feel fuller than a traditional whey-based protein shake has in the past.

Additions: I also tested the shake with the addition of some frozen fruit. Both a frozen banana and frozen blueberries were delicious, but the blueberries were my personal favorite, and I’ll likely continue to include them in future shakes. The inclusion of any frozen fruit would likely be a tasty addition if you’re looking for an extra kick of flavor.

 

Overall

If you’re looking for a delicious and nutritious shake to help fuel your workouts, or just keep you satisfied throughout the day, Naked Shake is a great option. It comes in several different flavors, so you can find one that fits your taste buds, and it’s made with only premium, all-natural ingredients. Plus, it’s perfect for on-the-go shakes or potentially as a meal replacement.

Head to the Naked Nutrition website to shop the Naked Shake today.

Questions about Naked Shake? Let us know in the comments!

10 Ways Sustainability and Health Are Linked

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sustainability and health

Climate change is here and many people are starting to realize that sustainability is a better way of living. Because climate change greatly impacts our health, having a green lifestyle can make a significant difference. 

Here are the top ten ways sustainability links to our health.

 

1. Reducing Food Waste

reducing food waste

According to the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency, 63 million tons of food waste were generated in 2018. All of the food we waste ends up in landfills, one of the largest contributors to greenhouse gas emissions.

Food waste negatively affects our environment and health for various reasons. However, reducing it would help feed the hungry since nine million people die from hunger yearly. Plus, it could stay out of landfills, reducing climate changes – which influences:

  • Shelter safety due to extreme weather
  • Air quality
  • Clean drinking water
  • Food availability
  • Nutrition levels of food

 

2. Reducing Pollution

It’s no secret that plastic is an overwhelming problem worldwide. Millions of pounds of plastic contaminate waterways and clog landfills. Even though bottled water provides the convenience of hydration, you can improve your health by contributing to the environment.

Consider looking for reusable options. You can choose a water bottle made of copper, steel or glass. Or any bottle free of BPA (Bisphenol A) to reduce your exposure to this toxic chemical.

 

3. Eating Locally

Eating locally grown foods provides many benefits to your health. Food that grows or is produced in your community means it’s fresh and tastes better. And having fresh food means you feed more nutrition to your body.

That’s because the longer the transit time for fruits and veggies, the more nutrients they lose. Therefore, purchasing foods from your local farmers’ market gives you more antioxidants which help fight free radicals and diseases.

 

4. Eating More Plants

vegetarian diet for health and sustainability

A plant-based diet – such as whole grains, vegetables, fruits and legumes – benefits you and the planet. 

Whole foods are minimally processed and don’t have saturated fats and added sugars. In turn, they reduce the risk of high blood pressure, heart disease, diabetes and cancer. Plus, it helps you lose weight.

 

5. Lowering Energy Consumption

With climate change on the rise, reducing your energy consumption is more important than ever. One way you may achieve this is by using only natural light, boosting your vitamin D. This may help prevent depression and lead to higher productivity.

 

6. Growing Your Own Food

You and your family can go green by eating clean foods from your garden. Many of the fruits and vegetables you see on the market have chemicals that help speed up their growth. 

You know what you’re getting with farming, and it’s a great way to manage stress. Plus, you can conserve more natural resources by using water nearby to irrigate your garden.

 

7. Helping With Conservation

forest conservation

Protecting the forests plays a key role in your health. It can provide you with nutrition while managing diseases. Restoring and protecting wildlife and habitats is a critical first step in preventing infectious diseases.

Deforestation puts humans at risk of malaria and other mosquito-borne diseases since there’s no web of opposing interactions.

Additionally, conservation work can boost your happiness since you’re doing good for the planet. 

 

8. Purchasing Green Products

You can find toxic chemicals in everything from cleaning products to building materials. Prolonged exposure to these toxicities can detriment your health. By purchasing environmentally-friendly products, you’re buying items free of toxic chemicals. 

Plus, buying Eco-friendly products doesn’t have to be expensive. Other affordable alternatives on the market are safe and healthy for you and the planet.

 

9. Buying Less Online

 

Consumers are obsessed with getting free, two-day shipping. This means companies are working hard to ship their products to keep the customer satisfied.

People buying more items online significantly impacts the environment with airfare and vehicle pollution. Plus, many consumers will return their items, which requires more packaging and shipping. 

While you may not be able to avoid online shopping entirely, you can still choose Eco-friendly ways to help the environment. For example, you can avoid asking for next-day shipping, purchase more than one item online and ask for Eco-friendly packaging.

And if you’re going to the store, consider walking or biking to get exercise and fresh air. More workouts help boost your mood and physical health.

 

10. Eating Less Red Meat

eat less meat for health and sustainability

Consuming less red meat and processed meat can profoundly affect your health and the environment. When you eat red meat, research has shown that it can increase your risk of heart disease, stroke and diabetes. 

Increasing your risk of these diseases also increases your risk of death. Therefore, what you don’t eat won’t harm you. And if you eat less red meat, you reduce the need for beef production – responsible for 14% of greenhouse gas emissions globally.

 

Choose an Eco-Friendly Lifestyle

Living a more sustainable lifestyle doesn’t have to be challenging. Start small, then gradually increase it to reach a greener life. By choosing to live this way, you reduce the negative impact on the environment and, more importantly, your health.

Start making smarter choices today to help save the future of younger generations and your planet.

8 Easy Ways to Conserve Natural Resources

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conserve natural resources

Much of the world’s population is concentrated in urban areas, which makes conserving natural resources more difficult, but even more important.

Here are some tips on how to conserve natural resources:

 

1. Turn off the water when you’re brushing your teeth

conserve water at home

Water is one of our most precious resources on this earth. It’s important to save water whenever we can, even when brushing our teeth.

Here are three reasons why it’s important to save water while brushing your teeth:

  1. It takes a lot of water to brush our teeth properly. We can save a lot of water by turning off the faucet while brushing.
  2. Millions of people around the world don’t have access to clean water. If we save water every time we can, it will help conserve this precious resource.
  3. Saving water helps protect our environment. When we save water, we’re using less energy to pump and treat that water, which reduces greenhouse gas emissions.

So please remember – turn off the faucet when brushing your teeth! It’s an easy way to save valuable water.

 

2. Take shorter showers

Shorter showers conserve water and ultimately help preserve our natural resources. When we take shorter showers, we are not using as much water as we would if we took a bath or long shower.

This means that there is less water needed to operate the facilities that produce and distribute our water, such as reservoirs, treatment plants, and pumping stations.

In addition, shorter showers save energy because the water does not need to be heated for as long. Ultimately, taking shorter showers is an easy way to conserve water and help protect our environment.

 

3. Reuse towels and sheets

There are a lot of reasons why it’s important to reuse towels and sheets. For one, it helps protect and preserve the environment’s natural resources. 

By reusing these items, we’re cutting down on the amount of laundry that needs to be done, which requires energy and water to operate. And this is especially important when it comes to towels since they can harbor bacteria if not washed properly after each use.

Reusing sheets can also help save you money on your energy bills. Sheets tend to be one of the most washed items in a household, so by reusing them you’re cutting down on the amount of energy needed to wash and dry them.

You can also consider using compostable packaging for your towels, sheets & other items.

Plus, if you have pets or kids, using a fresh sheet every night can get pretty expensive. Reusing sheets a couple of times a week can help offset that cost.

So next time you’re about to do a load of laundry, think about whether you could reuse any of the items in it. Towels, sheets, and even clothes can often be reused with no ill effects. And by doing so, you’re not only helping the environment, but you’re also saving yourself some money in the process.

 

4. Wash clothes in cold water whenever possible

When it comes to washing clothes, using cold water is the best way to conserve energy and help preserve the environment.

When you use cold water to wash your clothes, you are using less energy than if you used hot water. This is because the majority of the energy that is used when washing clothes goes towards heating up the water.

By using cold water to wash your clothes, you can help save energy and reduce your carbon footprint. In addition, using cold water can also help your clothes last longer since hot water can cause fabrics to shrink and fade.

So next time you do a load of laundry, make sure to use cold water and help conserve our planet!

 

5. Ride your bike or walk instead of driving

riding bikes to conserve natural resources

If everyone biked or walked for just one mile per day, it would save over a billion gallons of gas! Not to mention, biking and walking are great exercises too.

Biking and walking are two of the simplest ways to reduce your carbon footprint. In fact, if every American who currently drives replaced just one car journey with a bike ride, it would save over 4.6 million gallons of gasoline!

That’s the equivalent of taking nearly 925,000 cars off the road. And since bikes don’t produce any emissions themselves, they’re perfect for reducing air pollution as well. So start biking today and help make a difference!

Walking is another great way to reduce your carbon footprint. If every American who currently drives replaced just one car journey with a walk, it would save over 2 million gallons of gasoline!

That’s the equivalent of taking nearly 400,000 cars off the road. Walking is also great exercise, so you can feel good about helping the environment

 

7. Plant trees to provide shade and help with air quality

In order to save natural resources, people need to take some action and one way is to plant trees. Trees provide shade which can help reduce the amount of energy needed to cool a building or home. Additionally, trees help with air quality by absorbing carbon dioxide and releasing oxygen into the atmosphere.

The average American household spends about $2,200 per year on energy bills. If 10% of households were to plant trees, it would save $220 million each year.

In addition to reducing energy consumption, planting trees can also help protect water supplies. Trees act as a natural filter for rainwater and help prevent soil erosion. A single tree can absorb up to 48 gallons of water during a storm event!

 

8. Compost kitchen scraps and yard waste

Composting is the natural process of breaking down organic matter into a rich soil amendment. Composting kitchen scraps and yard waste helps in conserving natural resources by reducing the amount of garbage that goes to landfills. It also helps in improving soil quality and preventing erosion.

By composting kitchen scraps and yard waste, you can keep these materials out of landfills, where they take up valuable space and release methane gas as they decompose. Methane gas is a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to global warming.

In addition to keeping materials out of landfills, composting also helps improve soil quality and prevent erosion.

The composted material acts as a natural fertilizer, adding nutrients back into the soil. It also helps retain moisture in the soil, which reduces the need for watering and irrigation. And finally, composted material helps build healthy soils that can support plant life year-round.

If everyone were to compost their kitchen scraps and yard waste, it would make a significant impact on our

 

Conclusion:

There are many ways to conserve natural resources, and it is important for everyone to do their part. By following some simple tips, we can all help protect our environment and conserve valuable resources.

5 Foods That Offer Natural Sun Protection

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Foods That Offer Natural Sun Protection

Lying out in the sun can be like getting a massage since sunlight has vitamin D, which boosts the release of serotonin. This happy hormone relieves pain and gives you sudden bursts of energy and feelings of pleasure. Yet, sadly, the sun can also damage your skin, and has the potential to cause skin cancer.

But only 10-15 minutes in the sun without sunscreen gives you your recommended vitamin D intake, however if you stay out too long you greatly increase your risk of a sunburn and long-term skin damage and negative health effects.

But did you know that there are foods you can eat that will help bestow some natural sun protection on your skin? While they’re not a substitute for sunscreen, these 5 foods may help protect you from the sun’s negative effects.

 

Best Sun Protection Food

1. Dark Chocolate

dark chocolate for skin health

 

Chocolate lovers rejoice! A new study has found that dark chocolate may help protect against sunburn and improve skin health. The study, which was conducted by the University of Washington, found that people who ate dark chocolate had significantly lower levels of inflammation after being exposed to ultraviolet light. 

The researchers believe that the antioxidants in chocolate help to reduce inflammation and protect skin cells from damage. In addition, the chocolate appeared to increase blood flow to the skin, which may help to improve skin health. 

While more research is needed to confirm these findings, the results suggest that dark chocolate may be a delicious way to protect your skin from the sun. So next time you’re stocking up on sunscreen, be sure to grab a bar of dark chocolate as well.

 

2. Tomatoes and Watermelon

Tomatoes and watermelon are not only delicious, but they also offer a number of benefits for the skin. Both fruits are rich in lycopene, an antioxidant that helps to protect the skin from UV damage. 

Lycopene is thought to improve skin collagen production, which can help to reduce the appearance of fine lines and wrinkles. Lycopene is also believed to have anti-inflammatory properties, which can help to soothe irritated skin. 

Furthermore, watermelons are a good source of vitamin C, another nutrient that is essential for healthy skin. Vitamin C promotes collagen production and protects the skin from free radical damage. 

It has anti-inflammatory properties that can help to reduce redness and swelling. When applied topically, vitamin C can also help to brighten the skin and reduce the appearance of dark spots. Thus, both tomatoes and watermelons can help to improve skin health in a variety of ways.

Cooked tomatoes or tomato paste contain more lycopene. If you have 16 mg of it each day, which is the same you will get from 3 oz. of tomato sauce, you’ll increase your sun protection by about 30%.

 

3. Fish

Fish is a good source of protein and essential fatty acids, both of which are important for healthy skin. Fatty acids help to keep the skin moisturized and supple, while protein provides the building blocks for new skin cells. 

In addition, fish contains certain antioxidants that can help to protect the skin from damage caused by the sun’s ultraviolet rays. One study found that people who ate fish regularly had a lower risk of developing melanoma, the most dangerous type of skin cancer. 

The researchers believe that the nutrients in fish may help to repair damage caused by ultraviolet light and improve the skin’s ability to protect itself from further damage. While more research is needed to confirm these findings, there is no doubt that eating fish has many benefits for the skin.

Fish such as mackerel, trout, salmon, herring and sardines are rich in omega 3 fatty acids that will reduce your risk of melanoma, the deadliest type of skin cancer. If you eat two servings of fish per week you’ll generally get the protection you need. Fish oil supplements are also handy for reducing sunburn.

 

4. Green leafy vegetables

leafy greens for natural sun protection

It’s no secret that eating plenty of fruits and vegetables is good for your overall health. But did you know that certain produce can also help protect your skin against the harmful effects of the sun? 

Research has shown that green leafy vegetables, in particular, offer a range of benefits for healthy skin. These nutrients-rich plants contain carotenoids, which are powerful antioxidants that can help to neutralize damage from ultraviolet (UV) radiation. 

In addition, carotenoids can also help to boost the skin’s natural production of vitamin A, which is essential for healthy cell growth. What’s more, green leafy vegetables are also a good source of vitamin C, another important nutrient for healthy skin. 

Vitamin C helps to promote collagen production and provides protection against free radical damage. 

Spinach, kale, and chard may reduce your risk of squamous cell cancer by 50%, according to the International Journal of Cancer. Broccoli is also beneficial, and you only need to eat one half cup each day to get the positive effects from it.

So if you’re looking for ways to boost your skin health and protect yourself from the sun’s harmful rays, be sure to eat plenty of green leafy vegetables.

 

5. Orange Veggies

Carrots, pumpkin and sweet potatoes have been connected to reducing sunburns as well. They all contain beta-carotene, which is an excellent form of sun protection. Apparently, the more colorful the plant, the more it will guard you against UV rays’ harmful effects and help reduce your signs of aging and skin cancer.

Of course, after getting your vitamin D, slather on the sunscreen, and for some extra protection, just eat a few servings of these natural, waterproof sunscreens.


Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for freshness and consistency.

What Does the $1 Trillion Infrastructure Bill Mean for Fighting Climate Change?

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trillion dollar infrastructure bill

The Biden administration passed a $1-trillion Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal in November 2021 with three main goals: to create clean energy jobs, make the U.S. more resilient to climate change and advance environmental justice. The climate crisis has been a major talking point for this administration since its election, and this bill is the latest and greatest action taken thus far.

What does the bill mean for fighting climate change? Can it aid the United States in creating a more sustainable future? Here’s a quick breakdown of the bill’s contents and how they might play out.

 

Where the $1 Trillion Is Going

bipartisan infrastructure bill effect on energy

Out of the $1 trillion attached to the infrastructure bill, the following amounts are going toward notable climate-related causes and projects:

  • $50 billion for climate resilience and weatherization in response to the record-breaking natural disaster damage caused in 2021
  • $66 billion to expand public rail transit and integrate zero-emissions vehicles into public transportation
  • $65 billion for clean energy grid investments
  • $55 billion to expand access to clean drinking water
  • $25 billion and $17 billion to airport and seaport infrastructure, respectively
  • $21 billion to clean superfund and brownfield sites and cap abandoned oil and gas wells
  • $7.5 billion to build a national EV charging station network

The remainder of the $1 trillion will go toward efforts to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and increase funding for environmental groups, including the Federal Emergency Management Agency, Army Corps of Engineers and National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

These organizations help U.S. citizens forecast, prepare and recover from natural disasters.

Natural disasters have become more frequent and severe in recent years, so the additional funding for these organizations will be vital for protecting vulnerable communities. The bill also works in conjunction with many federal climate adaptation plans in addressing the greatest climate threats in various locations throughout the U.S.

Another notable act that will see significant improvements from the infrastructure bill is the Clean Water Act, which restricts waste disposal into navigable waters to ensure a clean supply. The bill seeks to eliminate lead pipes and remove dangerous chemicals from waterways, which includes heightened disposal restrictions.

The bill’s emphasis on emergency preparedness, clean water and improved transportation is a welcome sight. However, the efforts to reduce emissions fall short of expectations. There’s too much emphasis on resiliency and not enough focus on proactive measures. Here are the main reasons why the bill isn’t sufficient enough to help Americans fight climate change.

 

Infrastructure Bill Won’t Cut Enough Emissions

infrastructure bill vs emissions

The Infrastructure bill places a heavy emphasis on reducing emissions from transportation, as it seeks to accelerate the transition towards EVs with a nationwide public transit system. Old trains and buses will be replaced with new sustainable transit vehicles. Roads and bridges will also get overhauled, making cities cleaner and safer for everyone.

Another method to reduce emissions outlined in the bill is to clean, reclaim or cap “legacy pollution” in abandoned mines and fuel wells throughout the country. Millions of Americans live within just a few miles of abandoned sites, so a widespread cleanup is necessary to advance environmental justice.

However, revamping the public transit system and neutralizing abandoned energy sites isn’t enough to meet the Biden administration’s goals. Just a week before passing the bill, Biden attended the COP26 UN Climate Conference and pledged to reduce domestic emissions by 50% below 2005’s average by 2030. 

The administration no doubt had Biden’s pledge in mind when signing the infrastructure bill. Even so, independent studies show it won’t impact U.S. greenhouse gas emissions much.

One such study from the REPEAT Project estimates that the bill will only reduce 58 million metric tons of emissions, which makes up a small fraction of the required emissions to reach the 50% reduction goal.

Other projections from the Center for American Progress and the office of Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer reveal a similar outcome: just 6% of the Biden administration’s emissions will come from the infrastructure bill. So, where will the other 94% come from?

The real star of the show is the Build Back Better Act, which the house successfully passed in November 2021. The $1 trillion infrastructure bill must work with the BBBA to meet the Biden administration’s emissions commitment.

 

Infrastructure Bill Needs BBBA

solar power for low income neighborhoods

The same projections from Schumer’s office and the CAP show that the BBBA will reduce 14 times the amount of the infrastructure bill’s estimated emissions. The BBBA devotes $555 billion directly toward slicing the nation’s emissions in half, primarily through clean energy tax credits for homeowners and builders. Here are some notable incentives to boost green construction:

  • 10% bonus for taxpayers who meet the domestic content requirement
  • 10% bonus property located in an energy community (communities near former coal mines and power plants)
  • 10% bonus for solar or wind property in low-income communities
  • 20% bonus for solar or wind projects in low-income buildings

The BBBA also provided a plethora of tax credits for Eco-friendly actions like using alternative fuel, investing in facilities that generate clean electricity and using zero-emission nuclear power.

Other features of the BBBA include a Greenhouse Gas Reduction Fund for low-cost sustainable construction projects and the Civilian Climate Corps to give millions of citizens the chance to solve issues in their communities. It’s the largest climate crisis investment in U.S. history and could be a vital part of the nation’s future.

The BBBA gives the American people more power to influence the reduction of emissions, while the infrastructure bill directs most of its funding toward federal programs and agencies.

The complementary nature of the BBBA and the infrastructure bill is obvious when you realize their fundamental differences. The bill focuses on resiliency and recovery efforts more than proactive ways to reduce emissions. On the other hand, the BBBA has comprehensive decarbonization strategies that get federal programs and the average citizen involved.

 

The U.S. Needs Both Bills

Although the Bipartisan Infrastructure Deal will play an important role in improving disaster preparedness and creating more sustainable transportation options, it needs the Build Back Better Act to meet the Biden administration’s emissions goals. Both these initiatives pave the way for a healthier environment in the future.

The Shifting Trends of Global Energy Usage [Infographic]

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Shifting Trends of Global Energy Usage

The global demand for energy is growing exponentially year on year as countries develop and their population’s increase.

From industrialization of Western economies to the expansion of global and local transport, fuelled by coal and oil, the unprecedented rise in Western living standards and the rapid industrialization in China, energy demands are continuously growing, and the supply and where it is sourced from must change to fit demand.

Despite the need for more energy, driven by growing economies in developing nations, the way we’re sourcing it has changed dramatically due to the emergence of more efficient fuels and technologies.

The use of coal and oil is reducing whilst Solar PV is quickly increasing and is expected to grow 11.7% by 2050. Following Solar PV is wind at 6.4% and hydro at 1.4% showing that more eco-centric methods go hand in hand with the levelling trends occurring in fossil fuels, with demand for these expecting to drop off after 2030.

By looking at the peaks in global fossil fuel demand and the reduction in energy use intensity, there are issues to address and how countries perform against the Energy Architecture Performance Index.

Take a look at the emerging energy trends and find which countries are using them most effectively in the infographic below.

shifting-trends-global-energy-usage-infographic 1

Vertical Gardens: What You Need To Know To Grow Your Own

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vertical gardens

Vertical gardening is perhaps the best example of necessity spurring innovation. It seeks to answer the question: How can the ordinary (or not so ordinary) person without much space grow their own food (or keep a few plants for fun and beauty?)

It’s incredible what we can do with the technologies available to us right now. Theoretically, it’s possible to feed everyone with free, fresh, healthy, locally-sourced food.

So today, let us explore this method of growing food and keeping plants that you can use today in a tiny space.

 

Introducing Vertical Gardens – What’s the Appeal?

vertical gardening

Vertical gardening allows you to grow plants up instead of out. You can do this in many ways, such as using trellises, stakes, or fences. You can use this type of gardening to grow various plants, including fruits, vegetables, herbs, and flowers.

Vertical gardens are often used in small spaces, such as yards or balconies, where traditional gardening might not be possible.

Additionally, vertical gardening can create privacy screens or add shade to an outdoor space. You can create these gardens from various materials, including wood, metal, or plastic. They can also be created using recycled materials, such as old tires or pallets.

Depending on the materials used, vertical gardens can be very simple or quite elaborate. Overall, vertical gardening is an easy way to garden in small spaces and can add interest and beauty to any outdoor area.

 

The Pros and Cons

pros and cons of vertical gardening

One of the major benefits of vertical gardening is the efficient use of space compared to traditional farming methods. This is because vertical gardens use vertical space that would otherwise be unused, such as the walls of a building or a tall fence.

Indeed, vertical gardens can also be stacked on top of each other, meaning that you can use small spaces to grow many plants.

Another advantage of vertical gardening is that You can use it to grow plants in areas where traditional farming methods would not be possible. For example, vertical gardens are often used to grow plants in urban areas with little or no available land.

You can also use them to grow plants where the soil quality is poor or the climate is unsuitable for traditional agriculture.

Vertical gardens are an excellent way to decorate your home or outdoor living space and provide fresh, healthy produce.

However, vertical gardening also comes with challenges, such as ensuring your plants get enough light and water.

One of the main issues is that these gardens tend to be more challenging to maintain than traditional gardens. It isn’t easy to reach all of the plants in a vertical garden, and some plants may not receive enough light or water.

Additionally, vertical gardens can be more expensive to set up than traditional gardens, as they often require specialized equipment and materials.

 

Step by Step Guide to Create a Vertical Garden

step by step guide to creating a vertical garden

If you are considering starting a vertical garden, there are a few things that you need to keep in mind to ensure the best results.

  • Location: Choose the right place for your garden. While You can build vertical gardens indoors or outdoors, the area must receive enough light and enough space to accommodate plant growth. Additionally, ensure the area has proper drainage and is protected from strong winds as they can damage delicate plants.
  • Plants: Choose the right plants for your garden and climate. Some plants do not grow well vertically. Your plants should also be compatible with your area’s climate and soil types. (A good potting mix might help.) The type of plants you want to grow will dictate the kind of vertical garden you create. For example, growing vegetables requires a different setup than if you were growing flowers.
  • Materials: There are many different materials you can use to create your vertical garden, including wood, metal, plastic, and fabric. Choose the material that best supports the plants you want to grow. Or go for what’s readily available locally.
  • Watering: Watering a vertical garden may prove challenging. Have a plan in place before you start planting. Some vertical plants may require watering more often than if you were growing them on the ground. So, consider a drip irrigation system.

With some planning and preparation, vertical gardening can be a great way to grow a wide variety of plants in a small space. Fun hobby too!

 

Best Plants for Vertical Gardens

With so many plants to choose from, it’s tough knowing where to start. Here are some of the best plants and vegetables to grow in a vertical garden:

  • Pothos: Pothos is a fast-growing vine perfect for adding a bit of greenery to any space. It is a super-easy plant to care for and can tolerate low light levels, making it ideal for growing indoors.
  • Eggplants: Eggplants are another vining plant that does well in a vertical garden. They have shallow roots and require moderate amounts of water.
  • Spider Plant: Spider plants are another great option for vertical gardens. They are easy to care for and propagate and provide a nice green splash.
  • Ferns: Ferns are a classic choice for vertical gardens. They prefer moist conditions and need little maintenance, making them ideal for busy gardeners.

growing ferns vertically

  • Peppers: Peppers are another vining plant that does well in a vertical garden. They have shallow roots and require moderate amounts of water.
  • Succulents: Succulents are perfect for those who want a bit of color in their vertical garden. They come in a wide range of colors and sizes and are relatively easy to care for.
  • Tomatoes: Tomatoes are vining plants that you can train to grow up a trellis or support. They have shallow roots and require moderate amounts of water.
  • Cucumbers: Cucumbers are another vining plant that does well in a vertical garden. They have shallow roots and require moderate amounts of water.

But don’t let this list discourage you.

You can grow various plants and vegetables in a vertical garden. You’re only truly limited by your imagination about what you can do with the space. So, think broader and experiment.

 

Caring for Your Garden

caring for a vertical garden

A vertical garden adds a splash of greenery to your home without taking up too much space. Here are some tips for keeping your vertical garden healthy and happy:

  1. Again, start with the right plants. Not all plants are suitable for vertical gardens. Look for plants that are drought-tolerant and have a robust root system. Succulents and air plants are good choices.
  2. Provide adequate drainage. Vertical gardens can quickly become waterlogged if they don’t have good drainage. Drill holes in the bottom of each container and line them with gravel to help improve drainage.
  3. Water regularly. Vertical gardens need to be watered more often than traditional gardens because their roots are exposed to the air. Water them early in the day, so the leaves have time to dry before nightfall.
  4. Fertilize monthly. Vertically-grown plants will need more fertilizer than plants grown in traditional gardens because they cannot access nutrients from the ground. Use an organic liquid fertilizer and apply it once a month according to the package directions.

 

Beauty & Joy in a Vertical Garden

the beauty in vertical gardens

Vertical gardens bring both beauty and joy to your home or office. Use them to create a beautiful focal point in your garden or yard or add some privacy to your outdoor space.

Creating a living wall of plants adds color, texture, and interest to any space. In addition to their aesthetic appeal, vertical gardens also have many health benefits.

Plants help purify the air, improve humidity levels, and reduce noise pollution. They can also boost your mood and energy levels, making them the perfect addition to any home or workplace.

Is Environmentally Friendly Mining Possible Today?

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mining

Mining has been around for years and consistently received a negative score for the environment. The industry has also been notorious for creating toxic working environments while destroying local communities and ecosystems. It’s a long list of evils.

While conditions have improved significantly over the years, the mining industry never seemed to lose its bad reputation. This has necessitated more rules and regulations to ensure the mining process is safe and abides by existing laws.

Mining companies are increasingly switching to more sustainable methods to protect the environment because it makes more economic sense.

There are several reasons why mining is becoming more sustainable.

First, mining executives and consumers are increasingly aware of the need to protect the environment. As such, there is more pressure on mining companies today to slash their carbon emissions and minimize damage to local ecosystems.

Second, emerging technologies make it feasible to have more sustainable mines and mining operations.

Mining companies have realized that Eco-friendly mining is good at reducing their environmental impact and improving their public image.

So, what’s all the beef with mining, and how can we make it more environmentally friendly?

 

Environmentally friendly mining

environmentally friendly mining

Environmentally friendly mining is the practice of extracting minerals and other materials in a way that minimizes the negative environmental impact of the entire operation.

In many cases, this means using cleaner technologies to reduce the release of pollutants, minimizing the use of water and energy, and maximizing the reuse and recycling of materials.

Sometimes, it may also mean locating mines in areas with lower environmental impact.

However, environmentally friendly mining is not just about reducing pollution but also about ensuring that the local communities and ecosystems can continue to thrive even after the mine has closed.

This requires careful planning and monitoring to ensure that any negative impacts are minimized and the positive effects maximized. When done correctly, environmentally friendly mining can be a critical tool for sustainable development.

 

The issues with mining

open pit mine

Mining is a process of extracting valuable minerals or other geological materials from the earth, usually from an ore body, lode, vein, seam, reef, or placer deposit. These deposits form a mineralized package of economic interest to the miner.

Ores recovered by mining include metals, coal and oil shale, gemstones, limestone, chalk, dimension stone, rock salt, potash, gravel, and clay.

We require mining to extract any materials that cannot be grown through agricultural processes or created artificially in a laboratory or factory. Mining in the broader sense includes extracting non-renewable resources such as petroleum, natural gas, or even water.

Mining is the only major sector of the economy that is not sustainable. It uses up finite resources and, in turn, pollutes and destroys ecosystems.

The adverse effects of mining are far-reaching and often irreversible. The process usually involves clearing large areas of land, which can damage natural habitats, cause deforestation, and lead to soil erosion.

There is also evidence that mining causes global warming through excessive CO2 emissions, biodiversity loss, and accelerated erosion. It also poisons the land and water table with toxic chemicals and heavy metals, which leak into our drinking water supply.

These pollutants can cause respiratory problems, skin irritation, and even death. As a result, it is critical to carefully consider the environmental impact of any proposed mining project.

 

Strides in sustainable mining

future of mining

One promising green mining technology is the use of bacteria to extract metals from ore.

This “bioleaching” approach takes advantage of the fact that some bacteria can chemically break down minerals and release metals into solution. This technology is already being used on a small scale to extract copper, gold, and uranium, and we can potentially use it for a wider range of metals in the future.

Another area of active research is the development of “green” extraction methods that do not use toxic chemicals or generate hazardous waste.

One example is the use of enzymes to selectively dissolve metals from ore. This approach has the potential to be far less energy-intensive and environmentally damaging than traditional mining methods.

There’s also interest in reusing and recycling metals mined from the earth. In many cases, it is possible to recycle metals multiple times before they need to be extracted from the ore.

For example, steel can be recycled indefinitely without losing any of its properties. By increasing the recycling rate of metals, we can reduce our reliance on mining and lower our environmental impact.

Deep sea mining also looks like a promising alternative, albeit with some obvious drawbacks.

This relatively new technology involves pumps that draw water from depths of up to 4,000 meters, yielding small amounts of minerals such as copper and manganese.

The advantages of deep-sea mining include a lower carbon footprint than other mining operations and reduced environmental impact because there is no need to remove topsoil or drill into rock formations.

However, without safeguards, there’s the potential to destroy or destabilize marine ecosystems.

While there is still some way to go, the trend is definitely towards more environmentally friendly mining practices.

 

What can you do?

  • Reduce, reuse, recycle.
  • Choose products that have been certified as mined using sustainable practices.
  • Pressure your elected representatives to support policies that encourage sustainable mining practices.
  • Support companies and organizations working towards more sustainable mining practices.

Do you have any other ideas? Let us know in the comments!

5 Tips for Teaching Green Living Early

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Teaching Green Living Early

Why you are never too young to go green

When did you start to feel the pull of nature? Was it when you first watched the lightning show outside the window or the rainbow afterward, which seemed to touch the edge of the world?

Was it when you explored the shady underparts of the thickest part of the yard, where spiders live or went looking for the weirdest bugs you could find? Do memories come flooding back with the intoxicating smell of the rain (called petrichor, by the way)?

Young hearts are captivated by nature’s canvas, especially during the childhood years. Everything is new, exciting and wonderful. Everything is seen with new eyes and seems like a magic trick.

Children have a special perspective on green spaces and quirky creatures that adults should admire, and encourage.

Here are five tips for instilling a passion for green living in your kids:

 

1. Monkey See, Monkey Do

teach green living to kids

It might sound obvious, but children will always be much better imitators than they are students. Adults do it. Children see it. They learn to do it that way, too. The principle applies as much to table manners as to care for the environment and fostering green habits.

When children live in a home which appreciates and identifies the flowers and the birds in the garden, by name, they become birders and gardeners. When the household recycles and composts, it becomes second-nature to all its occupants.

When adults make an effort to replace single-use plastics and take fabric shopping bags to the store, children learn this is how life is done.

Kids see you. Everything you do. So, kids do it, too.

 

2. Give them Responsibility

It is surprising how keen children are to take on responsibility. It may be their innocence, not knowing how carefree they are in their formative years. It is also part of the natural development process, preparing for a life of responsible “adult-ing”.

Give them responsibility suitable to their level. A five-year-old may not successfully administer tick medicine to a dog, but they will be enthusiastic poop-scooping assistants amidst giggles and funny faces.

A three-year-old might drown your patio pot plants with love if left to it. But they will adore feeding the chickens, or folding and tearing down the cardboard boxes for recycling.

Responsibility builds confidence and encourages participation. It develops commitment and demonstrates the trust parents are placing in them to do the right thing. There will be days where you need to step up and do it for them, but walking beside them with affirmation and praise is likely to produce better results in the long run.

Be proud of their efforts (even failures), and make room for them to grow with their responsibilities.

 

3. Tour the Facilities

People like knowledge, but sometimes this means learning as you go along. A lecture about composting will be torture when there are places to explore outside. Seeing, experiencing and participating in the composting process step-by-step, however, over days and weeks and months, will foster excitement about the results and leave a lasting impression.

Throw away the off-cuts together. Show them how to wet and turn the heap regularly. Point out the work of the worms and how ‘worm wee’ has made the vegetables grow quicker this week. Spread compost on new flower beds together, or pot some herbs in it.

Urge them to smell it, noticing how the completely broken down matter doesn’t have a disgusting odor like the decomposing bits. Real education is fun.

 

4. Experiment! Have fun!

teaching kids principles of sustainability

Learning is more fun when one’s own progress is obvious. Keep a diary together of ‘scientific observations’ around the home and garden. Measure growth and time and input, for example. Get excited about recording watering, writing down a kid-friendly diary of observations (with their perspectives, drawings, notes and discoveries).

Watch things silently and talk about it afterward. Celebrate small victories (like the first peach blossom or a successful trip to the recycling plant).

Engage each of the five senses wherever possible – let them feel, taste, see, smell and listen. Above all, keep it light and laugh about small things.

Play is learning at its peak. So, play inside while you see who flattens the greatest number of boxes or who can sort tins, plastic and glass into the correct piles the fastest. Play outside, while you plant new vegetables, and when you mock charge each other with spades full of nutrient-filled chicken manure.

 

5. Fascinating and Fascinated

Lastly, fascination is catchy. A parent fascinated with books will grow readers. The same applies to nature-lovers. Be animated in the way you talk about green issues, even the small things like upcycling, fertilization and water conservation.

Make nature a fascinating topic of daily conversation and share your own wonder at its intricacies. It is not difficult, as you start to realize how much nature has to offer.

The world is beautiful. We just need to take the time to notice and share the magic with our children.

Did nature’s attraction start to wane for you at some point? Did you find other distractions? The young at heart are people who have relapses of awe and amazement at the beautiful intricacies of the natural world. It is never too late to start again.

May you never lose your sense of wonder.


Editor’s Note: This post has been updated for freshness and consistency.

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