Going Green with Cleaning Supplies

Harming our family members that live in our house is not usually something we think about when we clean, yet some of the products that we use may do exactly that. Many cleaning products contain very harmful chemicals and agents that can cause health problems such as respiratory illnesses, skin conditions, and allergic reactions. Most cleaning products are toxic, especially if a toddler happens upon them and splash them in his or her eyes, or even worse, decides to taste the solution.

Consumers are beginning to demand that companys offer cleaning products that are safer to the environment and to their own health. Using green or organic cleaning products is one step in ridding the environment of chemicals and toxins. Items such as shampoos, laundry soap and cleaning supplies that dont include ingredients such as chlorine are in high demand and are becoming more and more popular by the day. Consumers are now reading the labels of cleaning supplies and scrutinizing them to see if they contain organic compounds, such as those that use vegetable bases instead of harsh chemicals. Consumers are also seeking products that contain little or no dyes. Purchasing these types of products not only helps keep our children safer, it also helps cut down on water pollution.

Other household products that are more environmentally friendly are also in high demand. These include items such as shower heads and faucets that conserve water, light bulbs that are more energy efficient and even kitchen appliances such as refrigerators and dish washers. Buying furniture that has been constructed from recycled materials is popular, along with using flooring that is made of bamboo. Being green in your house doesnt only help you be healthier, but it can make for a healthier environment also. Most eco-friendly cleaning products are less expensive then the types that are made from harsh chemicals, allowing even those on a tight budget to be able to afford to purchase them.

California Shoreline a Priority for the Green Party

The Californian seacoast is the second largest in the nation at 840 miles not including freshwater shoreline, and a tidal coastline of 3,427 miles. Its coastline and freshwater sources make water a primary concern of California’s Green Party and a major tenet of its platform.

California Green Party’s 2010 Addendum

In 2010, the California Green Party published an addendum to its 2008 party platform.  Under the heading “Ecology and Earth Stewardship” the party issued a new principle concerning green science but the only portion of the 2010 platform it revised in this section was that of its proposition for water management and policy and water conservation and pollution.

Integral to propelling the Green Party’s policies on water conservation is the Marine Life Protection Act (MLPA). Its 2010 addendum to its platform includes, among other propositions, that it supports those policies necessary to implement the MLPA and end activities that damage its coastal waters such as dumping of sewage and other pollutants into the ocean.

Marine Life Protection Act

The MLPA, passed in 1999 as part of the California Fish and Game Code, requires the state to review all marine protection areas (MPAs) previously created and possibly design new MPAs that function together statewide.

The MPLA discovered that those MPAs already created were not functioning in a coordinated system. With more than 50 MPAs created randomly along the coast over the previous 50 years, there were no coherent, scientific guidelines followed in their implementation. The delicate ecosystems and flora and fauna which thrive in them were being threatened by coastal development and water pollution. By improving the MPA system, the conservation of these habitats may not only protect against their loss but also improve research opportunities and even re-grow decimated fisheries.

The Green New Deal

The Green Party grew from a desire to improve the world’s environment and conservation efforts. It became a political party when active members realized that that desire to make change could be better aided by having members become active participants in the political decisions that govern these efforts.

The U.S. Green Party has developed key values that exemplify its position on these and other political issues. Following President Barack Obama’s State of the Union speech on January 25, 2011, Green Party activists vocalized their disagreement with the Democrat’s approach to environmental issues in our society.

The Green Party agrees with the Democrats on one thing: the focus on the issue of jobs.  And we are not talking about all jobs like small businesses like JR Dunn or your local designer clothing store. This is more of  an environmental issue to discuss when job creation is viewed in light of the energy industry.

In President Obama’s speech, he indicated that he supports the continued use of non-renewable energy sources such as fossil fuels. The government continues to subsidize fossil fuel industries such as oil, natural gas, coal, nuclear energy and its derivatives. In the Green Partys version of the New Deal, the government would deter fossil fuel corporations by repealing these subsidies. At the same time it would grow incentives for the research, development and manufacture of renewable energy sources, leading to the creation of jobs in these areas as well.

According to Cecile Lawrence, Ph.D., J.D., rapidly switching to renewable energy sources would lead to an equally fast increase in better paying jobs which would also improve not only the economy but also the physical well-being of the country’s population.

In the Green New Deal, public investment is the only way to create new jobs. By investing in alternative energy, expanding the use of public transportation and retrofitting the existing infrastructure to be more fuel efficient, millions of new jobs would be created.

The Green Party of the 22nd Century

If the Green Party existed in James Cameron’s fictional film Avatar, It would be comprised of the native inhabitants of Pandora. Not just the Na’vi, the human being like race but all of the dwellers – fauna and flora.

The Na’vi, like the Green Party, has very well-formed and progressive thoughts about environmentalism and conservationism. And, like the Na’vi, the Green Party takes a hard line on these issues, although not a violent one.

Pandora’s ecological system is similar to a human brain. It is comprised of a neural network which covers the planet that not only connects the plants of the planet but to which all the native creatures can connect. The Green Party’s platform on ecology has a similar (although much more realistic) take on nature.

Green Party’s View of Ecology

One of the Green Party’s basic tenets is that society must behave in such a way that recognizes the integral part it plays in nature, not just locally but on a global level. Society must take socially-responsible, self-sustainable actions now so that the planet’s natural resources will be able to replenish themselves.

How Pandora Achieves the Green Party’s Platform

Throughout Avatar the Na’vi are ineffectual in their battle against humans. The movie culminates in a battle between the humans mining unobtanium on the planet and the Na’vi fighting to protect the integrity of their planet. However, the Na’vi are unable to win until all of the planet’s dwellers join together.

Thus far, the US Green Party has been unable to fully garner the support of the other major US political parties in its fight to improve the environment. Although the US has taken baby steps towards improving the environment, it will take all of the nation’s dwellers to win this battle.

The Ecological Wisdom of the Green Party

Like all political parties, the Green Party came from strongly held beliefs. However, the platform based on its approach to environmentalism and conservationism, didn’t foment into a US party represented by elected officials until 1985. As global concern for the planet and its resources has grown, so has the strength of this political party still in its (relative) infancy.

Although the party has seen limited success in garnering elected positions in the US, its central tenet has pushed the other political parties to at least compromise on many of these important issues.

The Green Party’s Take on Ecology

According to the Green Party’s platform, members believe that society must act with the knowledge that it is an integral part of nature. It is incumbent upon society that it functions within the limits of its ecological resources on a local and global level. The Green Party doesn’t see the planet as meeting our needs in just the here and now but believes society needs to be sustainable. That is, future generations will benefit from our actions now rather than suffer its consequences. Therefore, society must respect the integrity of the planet’s natural resources and consume its resources in a way that will move us toward an economy that is energy efficient and agriculture that replenishes the soil.

The US Green Party and the Kyoto Protocol

The US Green Party has had little effect on the US when it comes to supporting the Kyoto Protocol, the portion of the United Nations Framework Convention on Climate Change geared toward combating global warming. Whereas the Green Party supports rapid reduction of greenhouse gases worldwide, higher energy efficiency standards and the conversion to renewable energy sources, both the Republican and Democratic parties oppose the treaty.

Simple Ways to Save Energy

Many of us try our best to think of ways to conserve energy because it is a way to help the environment and the entire planet. Cutting down on the amount of energy you use in your home is a great way to start. Conserving energy can be achieved in a number of ways.One way to save energy is to walk to as many destinations as possible. Although this isnt always a feasible option, especially if you live in a very cold winter climate, even a few trips by foot can help. Another great way to get around that doesnt use gas or oil is to use a bicycle. Not only is bicycling a very healthy way to exercise, but its clean and green. It is a cheap form of transportation, since you dont have to make frequent stops at the gas station to refill your tank. If walking or bicycling isnt an option, you can always participate in car pooling or using a local bus system.

Saving energy inside your home can be done even on a fixed income or small budget. Although you may not be able to afford the latest energy saving appliances, you can do small things to the house such as caulking leaky windows and making sure the doors have weather stripping to prevent air from entering from the outside, or air from the inside going out. Extra insulation is always a big help when trying to conserve energy also. If you are a do-it-yourself type, you can install the insulation yourself and its not overly expensive. Using heavy drapes in the winter can cut down on energy use, as they will help block out cold drafts. Using cold water to do your laundry is a great way to save energy, and it is proven that cold water works as well on almost all fabrics as using hot water.

Dangers to Our Environment and How to Help Clean it Up

Going green can be described on a personal basis as simply doing whatever is in your power to help the environment. Most of us think that we can’t even begin to scratch the surface when it comes to cleaning up the air, water pollution or environment, but we can, by simply taking a few extra steps and learning how to help.

One of the biggest environmental pollution problems lies in our drinking water. Everyone can help cut down on pollutants entering the water. For instance, the next time you fertilize your garden, check the weather forecast first. If rain is called for, wait a day to fertilize so that the excess doesn’t wash into the waterways. Another small step is to pick up trash that you see, even if its just a small bit of paper or plastic, as these items can hurt waterfowl. Being careful to properly dispose of used oil, paint or any other chemicals can help clean up the soil, so that when it does rain, the chemicals won’t wash into lakes, ponds, rivers, and streams. Most water pollution comes from large factories and businesses, but if everyone does their part, we may be able to improve some of the bad water conditions.

Secondly is air pollution. This too is normally caused by large businesses that are more focused on making money then they are the environment. The smoke that often bellows from these large plants can be carried for miles, causing the air to become dirty and very unhealthy. Conditions have gotten so bad in some areas, those state leaders have placed burning bans on land that is even privately owned.

Although it is a major problem, regular citizens can do their part in controlling environmental pollution. There are online courses through accredited online colleges which teach how to use caution when disposing of chemicals, plant a tree, pick up a stray piece of trash and use organic products if at all possible.