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Top 10 Green Bloggers of 2018

With almost any set task or goal in life, we often need that extra boost of inspiration to keep ourselves on track.  It’s no different when you’re consistently trying to maintain stellar eco-warrior status in your home or business.  In 2018, there are hundreds of suggestions and creative ideas online to help individuals become more ‘Green’ in their lifestyles – where to even begin?!

To keep the inspiration alive, I’ve pinpointed my top 10 favourite bloggers and websites to follow in 2018.  I hope they can bring you some motivation, too!

  • Eco Geek (www.ecogeek.org)
  • Greenne (www.greenne.com)
  • Sustainable Smart Business (sustainablesmartbusiness.com)
  • Environment Blog (www.theenvironmentalblog.org)
  • Andrew Winston (www.andrewwinston.com)
  • Terra Infirma (www.terrainfirma.co.uk/blog/)
  • Green Living Guy (www.greenlivingguy.com)
  • The Evnironmental Blog (www.theenvironmentalblog.org)
  • Moralfibres (www.moralfibres.co.uk)
  • Zero Waste Home (www.zerowastehome.com)

Until next time,

Keep Green!

Katie

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4 facts about climate change that Donald Trump cannot deny

In the run up to the election of the 45th president of the United States of America, climate change was at the top of the agenda. The subject was a part of nearly every debate that took place in the heated election race and many scientists started expressing concerns about the rhetoric coming from then presidential hopeful, Donald Trump.  The Republican presidential nominee has always been straightforward and blunt about his feelings on climate change.  In an infamous tweet in 2012 he stated:  “The concept of global warming was created by and for the Chinese in order to make U.S. manufacturing non-competitive”.  Trump continued to cause waves during the race for Oval Office when he vowed to dismantle the Paris Agreement by removing the U.S.A from its commitments.

In January, 2017 when the “never going to happen” actually “happened” and Donald Trump was officially inaugurated as the next President of the United States of America, he wasted little time in pushing his agenda.  One of his first orders of office was to remove the White House climate change website and purge any mention of climate change on the government website as a whole.

Unfortunately, for Donald Trump, the threat of global warming and global climate change is generally accepted and believed as fact by most nations, and it’s going to take more than the deleting of a website to back track on the progress made (or at least we hope).  Unfortunately, it would seem the nations relying on money made from fossil fuels are having a harder time convincing their entire government and people that climate change is a present, in-your-face, tremendous danger to the world as we know it, now.

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Facts don’t lie!

While President Trump might be doing his best to silence the debate around climate change, there are some facts that he simply cannot deny. Here are 4 facts that are simply undeniable:

  1. The Globe is heating up

Over the years scientists have been creating models to display how the world’s temperature is rising. The graphs showing global temperature change has become a standard image for climate change.

2016 was the third year in a row that temperatures showed a dramatic increase. Keep in mind that just a half a degree change in temperature can have a massive impact on life on the planet. In this century alone, we have seen 16 of the 17 warmest years ever recorded.

The data is there, the charts and sheets reflect the models, and no one can deny the rise in temperatures.

2. The weather is becoming increasingly unpredictable

Extreme weather patterns have become the norm as global temperatures rise. Erratic weather is a direct result from the increased temperatures of the oceans as they fuel weather phenomena’s such as hurricanes.  Warmer oceans also mean that the air holds more moisture than before, leading to heavy flooding in places where floods may have been uncommon.  Arguably one of the biggest causes of erratic weather patterns is the issue of the steady melting of the arctic ice caps with results anticipated to be felt as far as the Indian Ocean.

These extreme weather patterns are battering economies, leaving people homeless and eroding the land. In the state of Louisiana, 6.9 trillion gallons of rainfall caused a deluge in the state, resulting in $10 billion dollars in damage.   Scientists warn that this is not the last we’ve seen of this type of weather, they claim that it is 40 per cent more likely to happen again and again and it is a direct result of climate change.

3. We are responsible for climate change

Human life is responsible for the rapid increase in climate change.  The amount of greenhouse gas that has been emitted over the years has been the single biggest instigator of climate change.  The rise in greenhouse gas can be placed alongside the development of human industries.  As the human population becomes more and more industry driven, the climate continues to change.   In the past 60 years, the time period in which industries have boomed, climate change has increased alongside.

While the natural evolution of the world is playing a role in the rise of the planets temperatures, it’s the greenhouse gases that are fast forwarding that increase in temperatures.  In fact, temperature is rising at such a rapid rate that if dramatic action is not taken, scientist claim that the world as we know it will self destruct in the next 100 years.

4. Action is needed

The last fact that President Trump cannot deny is that without swift action being taken by the world’s leaders and all global citizens, global warming is only going to get worse.  Should things continue as they are now:

  • There will be more extreme hot and cold temperatures in areas all over the world.
  • Heat waves will become more common and will last longer than normal.
  • Parts of the world will become drier.
  • Ocean life will be damaged beyond repair by rising acidity levels.
  • Livestock and fish will decline and food shortages will be experienced all across the globe.

Global warming and climate change are a reality, and denial is not going to solve the issues at hand. It is important to look at the facts that have been presented and to acknowledge that if we don’t start banding together, the chance to save the planet for future generations will soon be lost.

Green Leaf Alternative Solutions is a Johannesburg-based Green Energy Company committed to making a difference.  The company offers Green Technology such as: solar geysers, solar PV systems, grey water management systems, rain water harvesting and energy efficient air conditioning, contact Green Leaf Alternative Solutions to find out more about how you can Go Green and contribute to the fight against climate change.

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2017’s Interesting Energy Innovations

Just as 2016 was a landmark year for renewable energy, 2017 looks to be even more important for this growing industry. Innovation is going to be the renewable energy trend in 2017 and we are likely to see some very interesting developments that will have the power to change the way that we look at energy. Although change is happening slowly, the world is making a commitment to Going Green more than ever before. We are becoming more educated about the damage that has been inflicted on our planet and we are becoming more aware of the consequences of doing nothing.

One positive that we can take from Going Green is that we are being forced to be creative with our energy and this means that more exciting projects are being developed.

Today, there are plenty of great ideas floating around, waiting to be turned into real-life projects that have the ability to transform all of our lives. There are some ideas that are too risky to consider at the moment, too drastic to implement while there is still time to heal the earth.

But while some ideas are still just concepts and some that are many years away from being developed into a reality, other safer ideas are closer to being realised.

But 2017 is the year that revolutionary ideas that can be put into practice are likely to come to life.

Projects to look out for in 2017

Recycled water

Grey water systems are great for watering gardens and washing cars, but it is of course not safe to drink. Until now, the idea of generating purified water from sewerage sludge has not only been unfeasible but not wholly supported by communities and investors.

When Bill Gates drank the first glass of distilled water using the Omniprocessor, people were sceptical but when looking at the science behind the processor responsible for generating this water, the idea takes on a whole different shape.

Sewer sludge is boiled and the water vapour is removed from the solids. The solids are burned which turns to steam and in turn, helps to generate electricity. This electricity keeps the system functioning without taking power from the grid and any excess power created is sent back into the community. The water vapour is sent into a cleaning system which purifies it into the cleanest water your will ever drink!

This processor is ideal for developing countries that still lack access to clean running water and stable electricity. The small processor can also become an income generating project for developing nations!

Clean water for African communities is becoming a reality, especially with the advancements in 2017
Clean water for African communities is becoming a reality, especially with the advancements in 2017

Carbon capturing cement

The process of replacing the fossil fuels which are being used in infrastructure is a slow one and this is because fossil fuels have a devastatingly long lifespan.

Carbon capture is the process of removing carbon dioxide from the air and reducing the amount of carbon that is a big cause of global warming. This process is guaranteed to change the transitions that the planet is making towards reducing emissions.

While we have already found a way to remove carbon from the smoke release during manufacturing, as well as from the air, it is an expensive process and it needs to be done at a lower cost in order for it to be worthwhile. Then there is also the problem of where the carbon is sent once it has been extracted.

Right now, that place is within the ground. The carbon that is being placed underground is being done to stimulate oil production, which in a way defeats the purpose of removing the carbon in the first place.

But there is now a better idea on the way. CarbonCure is a company that is injecting carbon into cement where it will be isolated and become less harmful to the environment. The cement industry is responsible for around 5% of the global carbon dioxide emissions. While this does reduce the amount of carbon dioxide as a result of production, it does not completely eliminate all of it.

This process is currently being experimented with in an effort to make it profitable and more effective.

Imitation beef

What does meat free beef have to do with renewable energy you ask? Did you know that the beef industry is to blame for huge amounts of carbon emissions? While it might not be everyone’s favourite thing to eat, meat-free beef is a fantastic vegetarian replacement that is supposed to mimic the taste and texture of real meat. While the initial tests have proven this meat is popular in certain circles, it has not yet been introduced to the masses and so there is no proof that it will be competitive in the market.

Taste and price will ultimately be the deciding factor when it comes to whether or not this renewable food option stays relevant in the long run.

Pay as you go solar power

Pay as you go solar power is the next leap in solar energy and it is going to have a wonderfully positive effect on energy for communities without access to national electrical resources.
Pay as you go solar power is the next leap in solar energy and it is going to have a wonderfully positive effect on energy for communities without access to national electrical resources.

Again, 2017 will be the year in which solar power will take the centre stage in the ongoing struggle to ensure that renewable energy is effective. The people will always come first when it comes to renewable energy and it is more important that people and the environment benefit before there is a profit.

Azuri Technologies is a company that has worked out how to affordably provide solar power to homes that are off the grid in Africa, and they have come up with a way that is beneficial. Charging a small amount, a family can have a basic solar power unit that will be enough to power two lights and to charge a mobile device. To keep the unit functioning, the family will need to purchase credits although the price that they will pay will be far lower than they would normally spend on kerosene for lighting. The family will save on energy costs and 18 months after paying for their units, they will own their system.

And, this system has already been proven to work in 11 sub-Saharan Africa and has also won awards. This pay as you go system is bridging the gap between the grid and those who have no access to it, which means that people no longer have to wait for power to come to them. These households are skipping ahead, avoiding the conventional use of electricity and immediately benefitting from having solar energy.

Are you planning on Going Green in 2017? You can with Green Leaf Alternative Solutions. We have the systems that can transform the way that you both consider energy and use it. With solar systems, energy efficient air conditioners, grey water systems and solar geysers, you can be a part of the group revolutionising an industry reliant on fossil fuels.

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Google will be 100% Green in 2017

2017 looks to be a big year for Going Green. Recently the internet’s biggest search engine announced that it had plans to go 100% Green in 2017. Using only Green energy, such as solar power provided through various solar solutions and wind power through the use of wind farms, Google is setting an example that others can follow.

Google already has a fantastic reputation for being one of the few tech giants committed to being a fully Green company. They are ahead of all of the other tech companies when it comes to relying on Green energy.

“Every year people search on Google trillions of times; every minute people upload more than 400 hours of YouTube videos. All of that takes an incredible amount of processing power — which means energy. Our engineers have spent years perfecting Google’s data centres, making them 50 percent more energy efficient than the industry average. But we still need a lot of energy to power the products and services that our users depend on. We began purchasing renewable energy to reduce our carbon footprint and address climate change — but it also makes business sense.” – Urs Hölzle Senior Vice President Technical Infrastructure

Google has become the biggest company to sign contracts with some of the world’s best known renewable energy companies, which will allow them to buy their renewable energy directly.  For years, Google has been relying on renewable energy to provide power to their operations; in fact, they are already the biggest corporation buying renewable energy.  In 2010, they signed a contract with a wind farming company in Iowa to buy all of the renewable energy produced. This was just the beginning of their Green goals.

Reaching new goals

The latest renewable energy goal set by Google is the final push towards Going Green in terms of their electricity. And Google, in turn, is supporting the companies that supply the energy by signing long-term contracts.

One of the motivators for Going Green has to do with the fact that in the past few years, the prices of renewable energy has dropped by up to 80% depending on the type of energy being bought.  Since Google uses immense amounts of electricity to keep their services going, finding a cheaper source is the best way to go. But Google also has an obligation to the environment; with so much energy used they know the importance of only using clean energy.

One of the slogans Google is known for is “Do no evil”, and they are truly living up to their motto.

Fully committed to the environment

Renewable energy is a global focus, and Google is leading the way forward by setting a great example for other companies to follow.
Renewable energy is a global focus, and Google is leading the way forward by setting a great example for other companies to follow.

While it is great news that Google is aiming for 100% Green Energy, Google is also running 20 renewable energy-focused projects all around the world. By purchasing energy from these renewable projects, they are helping renewable energy companies around the world to grow and to bring new innovations to life.

Google is all about new ideas, so it makes plenty of sense for them to also support companies that are similarly minded when it comes to being innovative.

Climate change is a very real threat to our planet.  Companies that can afford to set the example, and that can afford to support Green Energy initiatives are helping to reduce the prices associated with renewable energy.  Green Energy was once expensive, but thanks to more and more companies Going Green with their energy, the prices are dropping.

The efforts by Google will go a long way towards helping the progress of the Green revolution. South Africans can also choose to use renewable energy when they install solar solutions, energy efficient air conditioning and water management systems in their homes or businesses.

Are you inspired to Go Green? At Green Leaf Alternative Energy we can assist you to transform the way that you harness power while helping to reduce the effects that burning fossil fuels is having on the planet. Even the smallest efforts can go a long way in the fight against Global Warming. With energy efficient systems such as solar geysers, solar batteries, solar panels and other solar systems available, talk to us about the best way that you can use renewable energy.

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The Arctic is changing faster than we think

The Arctic Circle encompasses the northern most part of the world. It is surrounded by ocean and shared between 8 countries, with Russia and Norway having 2 of the biggest communities living within the area. Although it is only around 17 662 KM, this part of the world plays an exceptionally important role, not only as an ecological environment home to unique animals species and but also for the social role that it plays in the livelihood of those who live there.

The Arctic is the climate regulator that the planet depends on.

The Arctic Ocean is arguably the most important ocean on the planet, with its icy waters and colossal glaciers acting as climate regulators. However, over time, the Arctic has warmed causing a detrimental effect on the planet.  Some of the effects of disappearing Arctic ice include the fact that the amount of the sun energy deflected back into space has been reduced, causing more fresh water to be released into the salty surrounding oceans.  This, in turn, has contributed to a rise in sea levels.  As the ice thaws, more greenhouse gases are released.  There is also the problem with the rise in ocean temperatures due to the currents not been cooled off by the Arctic ice, a problem that will affect weather patterns.

According to the latest reports, the polar ice is melting a lot faster than anticipated.  The environmental change that the region is currently undergoing is not only affecting the impact of climate change but will directly affect over 4 million lives in the arctic area.

The Arctic Resilience Report

It's not just human life that is under threat. The Arctic is home to numerous animal species facing extinction.
It’s not just human life that is under threat. The Arctic is home to numerous animal species facing extinction.

Scientists have been warning people for many years about the impending climate change and the impact that a melted Arctic will have on the world.  In the Arctic Resilience Report, the research showed that the change within the Arctic was happening far faster than anticipated and that this acceleration in the changes would result in a rapid change in the eco-system with a direct impact on the lives of those who live in the region.

“This ground-breaking report, based on direct evidence from case studies across the circumpolar Arctic, is an unprecedented effort to gain insight from what is happening on the ground in the region’s social-ecological systems,” Joel Clement, the Director of the Office of Policy Analysis at the U.S. Department of the Interior and co-chair of the Arctic Resilience Report Project Steering Committee said in a statement.

The impact of humans

The reason for the melting ice is without a doubt global warming.  While the Earth has always experienced climate change to a degree, the onslaught this current climate change is unlike anything the Earth has experienced before, especially since the change is mostly man made.  The acceleration of the climate change has caused the effects to be devastating and noticeable with the impact already being felt in our lifetime.

One of the biggest changes brought on by climate change, which will be felt sooner than all of the other changes, is going to be on the way of life for those in the Arctic region.  People who live in the Arctic are known for their adaptability and their resilience when it comes to living in one of the toughest areas in the world, but it is questionable as to whether or not their way of life will be able to survive this level of climate change.

Reversing and slowing the effects of climate change will start with trying to undo or slow the damage that is happening in the Arctic circle.

You can make a difference by committing to a Green lifestyle.  By installing solar panels (PV System), solar geysers and efficient water management systems you can decrease the size of your carbon footprint juristically.  Contact Green Leaf Alternative Solutions today and change the way you use your precious resources!

 

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3 clever ideas every country can implement to combat climate change

This year has been a record one in terms of climate change. Many of the records broken have been a terrible example of how the climate is changing.  However, there have been many positive developments in the fight against climate change. In 2016, we have seen some of the highest investments made towards using clean energy.

Climate change is a very real and scary reality, and more and more people are being affected by it as the temperature changes across the globe.

We cannot escape climate change but we can change the way that we handle it and perhaps even reverse some of the damage already done and slow the process.

The shift to using clean, renewable energy has been phenomenal, even if it doesn’t make the headlines as often as it should.  In this year alone, over half a million solar panels have been installed every day, while China, one of the world’s biggest polluters, has focused on building wind farms as an alternative way to generate power.  Around the world, more countries have been building solar farms and wind farms to provide people with clean renewable energy.

Although the change has been slow, with previous years not showing as much progress as seen in 2016, the change is happening.  The world can and will truly benefit, by following the example of those who have come before them.  The effort has been put into creating a Greener, cleaner environment for every person.

We are not just changing the methods that we have depended on for the longest time to create and use electricity, we are attempting to change the very air itself.  Around the world, there have been a number of interesting initiatives to bring renewable energy to the people, at affordable prices. These are just a few of the ideas that have the ability to be replicated and used to benefit numerous communities.

Leading by example, these are the ideas that can be replicated

  1. Ban all fossil fuels

It might seem like an almost impossible task, but many European countries have been considering an outright ban on the use of fossil fuels. This is a harsh decision to make, seeing that there are numerous communities in countries throughout the world that rely heavily on the mining of fossil fuels as a source of income.

Coal was once an important and unavoidable necessity in the production of electricity and petrol. Coal was the force behind the industrial revolution. Today, however, there are numerous alternatives and these alternatives are designed to assist in correcting the damaged caused by climate change. Other countries have taken to reducing fossil fuels by changing the way that fuel is made. While this might be considered to be a small step towards banning all fossil fuels, it is a step that every country can make.

A complete ban of fossil fuels is one of the more drastic steps a country can make.
A complete ban of fossil fuels is one of the more drastic steps a country can make.

Germany, Denmark, the Netherlands and Norway have all voted to ban the use of fossil fuels in petrol within the next ten years.

The UK, the Netherlands, Canada and places in the USA have taken the ban on fossil fuels much further by creating plans that will see the coal industry take a drastic knock.

  1. More focus on efficiency

Often we rely on fossil fuels instead of making sure that we have created and built efficient buildings.  Insulation is a big factor in the colder nations around the world.  When the harsh and icy winter months arrive, more energy is used to keep places warm.  However, with better insulation and more efficient technology to keep spaces warm, energy can be saved.  Reinforcing and retrofitting buildings and homes can make a dramatic impact on the amount of energy used.  In 2014, the EU introduced measures to reinforce insulation and managed to save enough power, equivalent to keeping the whole of Finland powered.

  1. Introducing a carbon tax

Carbon tax is one of the ways that climate change can be tackled, and every country can use this method.  Carbon tax is a tax that is levied on the amount of carbon found in fuels.  Many countries are looking to introduce this tax as a way to combat climate change while many have already introduced such taxes.

Carbon is found in every type of fuel including petrol and coal, and once burned it pollutes the environment and contributes to the ongoing climate change.

Carbon tax has social as well as economic benefits and works well when a government is trying to enforce a climate policy.  In South Africa, we already pay an additional tax whenever we buy a new car.

Each of these three ideas is easy to do in countries around the world and each has already shown to have a remarkable impact on the amount of carbon let into the atmosphere.

Green Leaf Alternative Solutions is a Green energy company providing solar panels, solar geysers and other alternative energy options to those who are determined to Go Green. Based in Johannesburg, our solar systems, energy efficient air conditioning and water management systems can help in the struggle against climate change.

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Evidence from NASA tells us that climate change is not only real, but imminent

Climate change is one of the biggest debates of our time, and as with all important debates, the opinions are split into two camps. One camp believes that climate change is a fallacy, something made up to induce fear, while the other camp is looking at the science behind the opinion and seeing the reality. Climate change is very real, and the evidence is undeniable. Renewable energy, used on a grand scale, is the only way to go, but we are not at the point just yet to move away from fossil fuels. And the longer we wait, the more damage we do.

What is climate change?

Climate change is the change in climate patterns on a regional or global scale and it is largely due to the increased levels of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.

While the climate has been undergoing constant change throughout the existence of the planet, it is in the 20th century that the change has become more noticeable and more devastating than ever before. And because of the ongoing increase in the amount of fossil fuels being burned, the onslaught of climate change has attributed to the unceasing increase in global temperatures.

Global climate change has always been a part of the world’s global cycle, but why is it so dramatic now?

Unlike the other eras in which global climate change has occurred, this is the first time in human existence that climate change has been manmade. And so the rate at which the change is taking place is unlike anything we have seen before. This time, climate change is making a damaging impact. While we previously thought that the change would not happen in our lifetime, we are likely to be alive when the serious changes start becoming noticeable all around the world.

But scaremongering is not useful, education is. Scientists are telling us that there are already major signs of climate change and NASA has uncovered simple yet vital signs to prove that the change in climate is already having some scary effects.

The evidence of climate change that we cannot ignore

  • The rise in sea levels

A century is more than a lifetime for the majority of us, so the impact brought on by the rise in sea levels might not hit as hard, but in the last century alone the sea levels around the world have risen by more than 17 centimeters. This rise happened before the world started experiencing the sudden rise in carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, not to mention that 17 centimeters are double the height that the sea rose in the previous century.

What does this mean for us? Consider how many countries have a coastline or are surrounded by the ocean. A rise in sea levels has already become noticeable in the USA where cities along the Florida coastline have had unexpected flooding whenever the tide comes in. These cities have had to install pump systems and lift roads to keep people safe. The Major of Miami, a city that has had this issue for a while, has had to raise the tax revenue in the city to implement a system which he says will only keep the water at bay for around 50 years.

 

It is the island nations that are forgotten and in the majority of cases, the island nations are those that have contributed the least to global warming.

  • A rise in global temperatures

As the name says, global warming is an increase in the temperatures around the world. Since 1880, although some politicians would argue otherwise, the earth has warmed. The warming began in the 1970’s, while the warmest years were in the 1980’s. But it is the last 12 years that we have seen the biggest impact in terms of global warming.

Surface temperatures continue to rise as more carbon dioxide is released into the air and more deforestation takes place.

Climate change is going to make an impact on all of our lives and we will feel the effects. The evidence is there, and it is up to us to make sure that we do what we can to avoid catastrophe.
Climate change is going to make an impact on all of our lives and we will feel the effects. The evidence is there, and it is up to us to make sure that we do what we can to avoid catastrophy.
  • The oceans are heating up

A lot of the heat that has impacted the globe has been absorbed by the oceans. As the oceans are responsible in many ways for the weather we have as well as being responsible for control of temperature. A rise in sea temperatures has an effect on the surface temperature. At least the top 700 meters of the oceans have already heat up, and this is just the beginning if we continue down this path.

  • The oceans have also become more acidic

A massive part of the human population relies on fish as a means to survive. But with the acidity of the oceans rising not only are the fish populations diminishing but so are the reefs that were once home to massive fish populations. The fish populations can’t recover fast enough and since one billion people depend on fish for their meals, what will happen when there is no longer enough? The oceans absorb a third of the carbon dioxide that is in the atmosphere, and this is killing the reefs and the fish, while other forms of pollution are also to blame. The oceans can no longer absorb enough of the carbon dioxide to keep things in balance.

Recently, The Great Barrier Reef became another victim of global warming as it was reported that huge swathes of the reef had died. With the oceans around the world absorbing 2 billion tons of carbon each year, can you imagine the habitat in the coming years? Will there even be a habitat for ocean life?

  • The Arctic ice is disappearing

By 2040, you will be able to sail across the Arctic Circle in the summer months. The Arctic is an important global temperature regulator, and because the ice itself is bright, and is responsible for reflecting up to 80% of the sunlight that hits it.

The ice caps are already melting, disrupting the temperature and accelerating climate change.
The ice caps are already melting, disrupting the temperature and accelerating climate change.

The Arctic is also responsible for influencing the ocean currents, and that is the all-important influence which will be felt worldwide. This influence helps in the creation of fresh water (when ocean water enters the arctic it freezes and the salt is expelled) and it is also responsible for cooling down warmer water, which in turn affects the temperature. This temperature regulation also plays a big role in reducing the severe weather systems that the world is experiencing. Have you seen the news in recent years, about super storms and such? Now imagine the world without the Artic, without a significant buffer against extreme weather?

  • Extreme Weather patterns

Global warming ties in closely with the recent spate of extreme weather that has hit the planet. Severe droughts, overwhelming flooding, super hurricanes, and other extreme weather events have not only recently devastated the USA, but have been experienced in just about every nation on the planet.

At the end of it, climate change is something that has and will continue to affect us all until our governments and politicians take the change seriously enough to take action. To cut back on the use of fossil fuels and taking the renewable energy route will be tough, but it is not impossible.

Science and technology can help us to save our planet before we reach the very real point of no return. And it is important that countries like the USA, China, and India, nations with big populations, and big energy needs, take the lead. The change will happen slowly, but only when we all start taking climate change seriously.

There is no reason why we shouldn’t be able to make great strides. We still have people among us who do not believe that climate change is real but they science is undeniable. And it is the ignorance and the misinformation that we can fight, that is one of the ways that you can help with climate change. Another way that you can help is by Going Green.

We only have one planet, and it is up to us to make sure that we leave behind a healthy planet that our children can explore and enjoy. A planet filled with interesting animals and astonishingly beautiful landscapes. But right now, that is a world that we will have to fight for.

Are you ready to Go Green? Contact Green Leaf Alternative Solutions. We have the solutions that you can use to contribute towards a healthier planet.

 

 

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These energy efficient communities are changing the world!

From the world’s biggest cities to the smallest villages, a wave of Green thinking is taking place. Not only is climate change real but it is also changing the way that we approach energy. By accessing your electricity through solar panels or by undertaking water harvesting, you will not only be helping the planet and your community, but you will also be helping yourself.

We often think that climate change is someone else’s battle, but the reality is that not one of us can escape climate change. It makes sense to be involved; to be a part of the efforts to turn around the effects of climate change while also ensuring that you are dependent on nothing other than your Green investments.

Small towns can set up their renewable energy systems far more efficiently than bigger cities, as there are fewer people to cater for. And smaller towns are taking advantage of their sizes to implement working energy strategies.

These are the ways that small towns have turned to renewable energy as the main way to generate energy.

  • The town that rebuilt itself (Greensburg, Kansas, United States)

The USA is known for some devastating weather patterns.  In central America, tornados are always a danger during the late summer months. In 2007, a tornado tore through Greensburg and leveled the buildings forcing residents to either give up their demolished homes and move to a new town or rebuild. True to the American spirit the town’s residents chose to rebuild their town.

And they did so by using 100% renewable electricity.

They became the second American town to go 100% Green with their electricity and they have been able to successfully start over. They have included LED street lights and wind technology as a means to keep energy costs low and renewable.

  • The solar powered oasis town in Egypt

Solar panels have a bad reputation in Egypt, not because there is any doubt about the efficiency of the technology, but rather because many people consider the solar panels to be a bit of an eyesore. That being said, an oasis on the outskirts of Cairo, where agriculture is prominent, has gone solar to power their seasonal farming.

Towns built around oasis', such as this one in Peru, rely on solar power which is abundant in Egypt.
Towns built around oasis’, such as this one in Peru, rely on solar power which is abundant in Egypt.

The buildings here have been constructed with solar panels and solar systems, so those living in the Tayebat Workers Village are Egypt’s first community relying fully on green energy.

Egypt is one of the ideal places to harvest sun energy, with an abundance of sun shining on the desert landscape each day.

  • Ashton Hayes, Great Britain

Solar power and the UK might not have the strongest relationship, but there are some towns in the United Kingdom that are actually light years ahead when it comes to going Green. Ashton Hayes is the perfect example of how people can change their whole lifestyle, becoming Greener even when they are not relying fully on solar power.

This community undertook the task of reducing the amount of carbon they release into the atmosphere. So they improved the insulation in their homes so that they relied less on heating, they took fewer flights and they reduced the amount of energy they used in their homes. Through a combination of their efforts, they managed to reduce their carbon footprint by up to 40%.

Their efforts have inspired up to 200 other towns around the world to replicate the simple ways in which they have managed to reduce their carbon.

  • The Island of Tristan da Cunha

Only 8 times a year can you undertake the week long sea crossing from Cape Town to get to this tiny, eco-efficient island. The island imports almost nothing, its residents depend on themselves to get things done and they are quickly working towards relying fully on the environment to provide them with the energy needed to live comfortably. Their goal is to have 30% – 40% of their energy supplied by nature within the next 5 years.

They plan to become more sustainable by relying on community farming projects, wind farming, and initiatives to turn waste into energy.

As more towns see the benefits of sustainable energy, we are sure to see more towns and cities becoming fully reliant on nature. Who knows what developments the future holds?

Looking to Go Green in your home or business? Contact Green Leaf Alternative Solutions.  Here at Green Leaf, advice is always free.  Don’t hesitate to call us with any questions you may have about your journey to sustainability!

 

Climate Change

Climate change is an enormous environmental crisis. Global warming has caused a rise of the average temperature that has resulted in the melting of polar ice, an increase of the mean sea level, more extreme weather conditions and natural disasters such as droughts, floods, and hurricanes.  We have been witnessing Global Warming first hand here in Southern Africa with the recent drought due to lack of rainfall.  This is a real problem that needs real solutions.  Economists are predicting a further decrease in the South African Rand’s value, an increase in food pricing and other daunting economic issues to hit South Africa hard in 2016.

Economists and Scientists have also pointed out the correlation between Global Warming and the current moral and political challenges across the globe.  Environmental activists and leaders involved in the fight against climate change such as Prince Charles, Bill Gates and John Kerry have voiced their concerns on this issue and are doing everything in their power to bring the attention to these issues that it deserves.

What can we all do in our personal capacity to slow and even halt the process of global warming?  You can start by reducing your carbon foot print!

Energy saving products can not only decrease your monthly bills but can also assist in rescuing the earth from it’s present fate.  Browse our website for a full product list of exciting technologies that can assist you in getting your carbon footprint as small as possible.

Here are 5 ways to reduce your carbon footprint RIGHT NOW!

  1. Choose renewable energy. Pick a Green energy supplier that generates power from wind, solar energy and other clean resources. Have a look at your electricity bill to see if you are able to support renewable energy and lower your electricity bill.
  2. Drive less. Rather choose alternatives like biking, walking and public transit. By doing this it means less driving time, which is less money spent on gas and less pollution in the air. Consider car pooling or invest in fuel efficient vehicles (like a Prius or smart car!).
  3. Weatherize your home. Cooling and heating consumes up to 40% of your energy in the home. Use alternatives to become more energy efficient. Make sure your home is well sealed and insulated.  You can do this by investing in double glazing, quality insulation and energy efficient air conditioners.
  4. Fly less. Consider other options such as trains, busses etc.  Or make use of Skype and stay in touch with people via video conferencing.
  5. Eat wisely. Avoid processed items. Buy organic foods. Start your own garden and grow your own vegetables!  Try to cut down your meat intake.

Remember actions speak louder than words!  Let’s all pitch in and tackle this Global Warming issue together.

As time goes by we have witnessed the world become more globalized and united.  This is thanks to social media, the internet and easier access to global transit.  A more integrated world community means that the environmental issues affecting one corner of the globe will ultimately affect us all.  Let’s work together to solve this crisis!

Thanks again to our feature writer, Cora Van Niekerk for her content and visual contribution to this month’s newsletter.  We would like to wish Cora all the best in her final year of Honors in Marketing with the University of the Free State.

Cora

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