Monday, June 1, 2009

Bicycle & environment celebrations

-- Canadian Environment Week & Bicycle Month !!! --

June is officially Bicycle Month, a great time to take the family bicycles in to your local repair shop for tuning and repairs to make the outdoor experience more enjoyable. Alternatively look for a youth group, high school or college that has bicycle repair classes - these alternatives may provide a more budget friendly alternative for today's economic climate.

All week long here in Canada, from June 1st through to June 7th, we celebrate Canadian Environment Week. In honor of this I wanted to share some inspiring community actions that have happened in the last year here locally.

Several times over the last year Dave and I have witnessed groups of youth walking around the streets in the downtown area armed with bags and cleaning up as they went. We could all learn from this selfless act. Did you know that wind and traffic-caused breezes carry waste from inland to waterways (creeks, rivers, oceans, bogs, etc)? Astoundingly, up to 80% of the waste found in waterways originates inland. When looked at in this way, such small selfless acts take on a whole new meaning.

Numerous school and community tree planting projects have taken place as well as community clean up events around protected wildlife areas, water ways and polluted areas. Just recently we saw an article in the local newspaper that reported on a group of adult volunteers who have created mulched pathways in a park. Just last year we read of a group of adults who volunteered to create green spaces and playgrounds for an elementary school. There really are amazing actions taking place virtually every day even in our small city of about 6,000-10,000 (estimated).

There are all kinds of things we can do today, starting right now that make an immediate difference besides actively cleaning up our streets and alleys. We can choose to walk or bicycle to our destinations. We can bring home a tree or other environmentally beneficial plant that produces food for the family, protection for wildlife, or shades your home from hot summer sun. Plants can be selected for their ability to clean air, water and soil or preventing erosion.

Look around your home and office. Are you managing waste and energy as efficiently as you can? How about stand-by power use? This is the power continually consumed by flashing lights and power lights (on appliances, stereos, computer equipment and so on) when equipment is not in use. Unplug these power drains when they are not in use. A very simple way to manage this is to use power bars. In this way, you can turn off every machine in the entertainment center, for instance, with a flick of one switch. Power bars also protect against damage caused by power surges. Judicious use of caulking, insulation and weather stripping around the inside and outside of your home (or business building) is a very frugal way to improve the efficiency.

When looking at larger priced items for energy efficiency around the home consider the exterior doors, washer and dryer, refrigerator and freezer, cooking stove, dishwasher, microwave and hot water tank. Replacing these items will have an exceptional rate of return on your financial investment - at the same time it will have an immediate impact on the health of the environment.

* For great ideas that will help you save money and time, learn how to green the planet, create a sustainable world and teach young people that they can be the hero they are seeking in society... check out our book Trash Talk.

-- Authors Read Radio --

Today's featured guest on Authors Read radio show was Lucina Kathman who shared a chapter from one of the books in her Spanish/English children’s series: Payshapes and the Bear. To access this archived episode simply click on the hyperlink here or look to the right for a link to the Authors Read radio show.

-- Announcement --

Aricia LaFrance of Dynamic Family Coaching approached Dave & Lillian in May for article contributions, check out the "Raising Green Kids" and "Clean Vacationing" articles on the site:

Find Dave & Lillian Brummet, excerpts from their books, information about their radio shows & free resources & articles at

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