Category Archives: Green

We drew awareness to World Water Day and the troubling statistic that 1 in 8 people do not have access to clean water. Clean water is good, but that doesn’t mean we need to infiltrate the environment with plastic water bottles. Unfortunately, the growth of plastic pollution continues to devastate our earth in alarming rates. Sadly, every square mile of ocean has about 46,000 pieces of plastic floating in it.

Here are a few sobering facts regarding just plastic bags. Yikes.

Fast Facts on Plastic Bags

  • Over 1 trillion plastic bags are used every year worldwide. Look at this link that counts the number of plastic bags consumed this year (as of this writing, almost 113 billion).
  • About 1 million plastic bags are used every minute. The U.S. goes through 100 billion single-use plastic bags. This costs retailers about $4 billion a year.
  • Plastic bags are the second-most common type of ocean refuse, after cigarette butts (2008).
  • Plastic bags remain toxic even after they break down and a single plastic bag can take up to 1,000 years to degrade.
  • An estimated 3,960,000 tons of plastic bags, sack and wraps were produced in 2008. Of those, 3,570,000 tons (90%) were discarded. This is almost triple the amount discarded the first year plastic bag numbers were tracked (1,230,000 tons in 1980). (EPA)

So what does this mean?

The extremely slow decomposition rate of plastic bags leaves them drifting on the ocean for countless years. According to Algalita Marine Research Foundation, these plastic bags then cause the death of many marine animals (fish, sea turtles, etc.), when animals mistake them for food.

Moreover, when plastics break down, they don’t biodegrade; they photodegrade. This means the materials break down to smaller fragments which readily soak up toxins. They then contaminate soil, waterways, and animals upon digestion.

In order to stop this growing environmental hazard, we need to limit our plastic bag use and encourage a cultural shift away from use-and-toss culture. We encourage starting using re-usable bags since each reusable bag can eliminate thousands of plastic bags.

Finally, encourage your home state, similar to California, Colorado, Connecticut, Hawaii, Maryland, New York, North Carolina, Oregon, Texas, and Washington, to enact plastic bag bans, or impose a tax for those who need to use a plastic bag.

We can all make a difference with just these little steps. Let’s ensure the ocean and our marine animals are safe! Continue reading

A Los Angeles City Council committee recommended last Wednesday that single-use plastic bags be banned from food store checkout lines across the city and that paper bags be phased out.

The council’s five-member Energy and Environment Committee unanimously passed a recommendation for a three-phase ban that would, if enacted, become “one of the most-far reaching measures in the nation,” according to Heal the Bay, a non-profit organization that advocates this ban.

The three phases of the ban are:

Phase 1:
For the first six months a ban would be enacted for plastic bags only. These six months would be used to educate the public about the ban.

Phase 2: For the following six months a 10 cent charge would be placed on paper bags.

Finally, Phase 3: After 12 months, there would be an outright ban in all of Los Angeles on both single-use plastic and paper bags.

The recommendation was favored by the committee and supported by environmental groups, although some believe such a ban would be more destructive than helpful, citing a loss of jobs.

According to Councilman Dennis Zine, “The City would provide time to work with retail businesses to help them adjust, and consumers would need to adapt. People will adjust. They’ll adapt … and learn to take [reusable bags] with them.”

A vote on the recommended ban is expected in the full City Council in the coming weeks. We hope this decision will embolden other cities, counties and states nationwide to take action. The time has come to eliminate plastic pollution at its source in order to protect our environment and economy.

Here are some great totes that can replace those plastic bags!

OBEY Full Speed Bag
Price: $20.00

BILLABONG Oshun Lover Bag
Price: $24.50

Sku No: A03018SND
Price: $32.50

ROXY Big Buddy 2 Bag
Sku No: 452N90NAT
Price: $42.00

Image Source: Continue reading

Clean water. We assume it’s a given every time we swim or surf. Unfortunately, due to the growth and development along our coasts (which hasn’t been sufficiently managed), we’re now encountering negative effects when pollution taints our beaches and coastal waters.

The largest source of beach pollution is storm water runoff. Instead of soaking into the ground, rain typically flows off of paved and city, residential and agricultural landscapes, picking up contaminants as it flows downstream through the watershed and into the ocean. Leaking and overflowing sewer pipes, septic systems and discharges from factories and waste water treatment plants also pollute coastal waters.

Thankfully, Surfrider’s Clean Water Program is helping to solve water pollution problems and to educate communities about the many benefits of responsible land and water management.

The Clean Water Program has 3 elements: The Blue Water Task Force (BWTF) is Surfrider’s volunteer water testing formula. This program is used to determine the condition of beach water and to raise community awareness of local water pollution problems. Ocean Friendly Gardens educates and assists people in taking action in commercial or public spaces, or their own yards to prevent pollution. The goal is to capture rainwater on-site before it can leave the property and carry pollutants to the ocean. Finally, Surfrider’s newest program, Know Your H2O (KYH2O) educates communities on how we mismanage and waste our precious water resources, and presents solutions for integrated land and water management.

For further details on the programs, go to Surfrider’s Clean Water Program page. But, if you want to do something right now, anyone that donates at least $10 until March 14th will receive a bundle of 5 stickers and a Surfrider koozie. Donate here on their Facebook Causes Page

It will get you in the spirit for World Water Day, which is March 22nd. Continue reading

The House of Marley, a collection of premium quality, eco-friendly personal audio products, and available through yours truly, Becker, is getting some attention lately. They were recently named the Official Headphone Sponsor of two of the biggest concerts of the year, Z100′s Jingle Ball New York and KIIS-FM’s Jingle Ball Los Angeles, which were held on Dec. 3 at the Nokia Theatre L.A. Live and Dec. 9 at Madison Square Garden in NYC. They were also at the Ski Dazzle, the ski show and snowboard expo at the Los Angeles Convention Center, with a MARLEY Satisfy Your Soul Tour.

Working together for a better world, The House of Marley was created from the belief in the late Bob Marley’s vision of “One Love,” offering a range of eco-friendly, innovative audio electronics that adhere to the Marley family core values: equality, unity, authenticity, sustainability and charity. The House of Marley donates five percent (5%) of its annual profits to The epicenter of a global movement, is dedicated to spreading Bob Marley’s message of unity and peace by lifting up a new generation to strike the hammer for charities, causes and ideas that can change the world.

Model prices of The House of Marley products range from $29.99 to $499.99 for the “young gongs” who don’t want to sacrifice style, sound or their commitment to a natural life. Uniquely crafted with eco-friendly material and recycled plastics, these provide the perfect balance of lifestyle expression and high-quality sound. Built for bass, your ears will experience every satisfying note.

Snap up one of the 10 available earphone and headphone styles available, or even a House of Marley tee, and get ready for the docking stations and speakers that will be out from early next year onwards.

Check it out here: Continue reading

It’s time to celebrate Raptoberfest throughout the entire month of October.

What is Raptoberfest?

Raptoberfest is a reminder that there are numerous things we can do to reduce our plastic footprint. As many of us already know, plastics do not biodegrade. Instead, they gradually break down into smaller pieces, and eventually harm the environment upon infiltration, killing millions of birds and animals annually.

Sponsored by The Surfrider Foundation and Rusty, this fest shares plastic-related facts plus tips on how to minimize plastic use. The goal is to raise awareness of the dangers of plastic pollution and find solutions. Participants are invited to share their own tips on reducing individual plastic footprints via Surfrider’s Twitter and Facebook pages.

Three interesting plastic-related facts include:

1) In certain places of the ocean, the amount of suspended plastic particles actually outnumbers ambient plankton

2) Approximately one million seabirds and one hundred thousand marine mammals die from ingestion or entanglement in plastics each year

3) With the exception of a small amount that has been incinerated, virtually every piece of plastic that has ever been created still exists in some shape or form

Unfortunately, plastic has a devastating impact on the environment and marine life. Although plastics have helped manufacturing, shipping and packaging of goods for less money, unfortunately, the rise of plastics poses a significant threat to the planet.

A list of “10 Ways to Reduce Your Plastic Footprint” is also posted on the site and offers practical ways to cut back on plastic waste.

For more information, go to Continue reading