11 May
2016

Energy Efficient Hot Water Boiler & Warmer

Posted by Norman F, May 11th, 2016

Zojirushi VE Hybrid Water Boiler Warmer

Zojirushi VE Hybrid Water Boiler & Warmer is an energy efficient device that we recently purchased.  We have found it consumes far less power than using a microwave to boil water for beverages, instant noodles, etc.  It is also far handier than boiling water on the stove.

We had a 6 year old model that needed replacement. This unit is Vacuum-insulated to keep water warm. It provides maximum energy efficiency with 195 degree water falling slowly to 150 degrees 8 hours later.

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Toyota prius hybrid Car

It costs a lot to live in the San Francisco Bay Area. A recent study released in early 2012 showed that the average household in San Francisco spends 39.5% of their income on housing and transportation. Those that lived in the suburbs spent even more, probably because they had to drive longer distances. People that lived in Marin County spent 56.3% on housing and transportation, while those lived in San Mateo County spent 53.3%. Finding ways to reduce our transportation costs is very important.

How to Save Money on Your Car

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4 Apr
2016

What does it mean to be a Natural? Eco Friendly Cleaning Products

Posted by Norman F, April 4th, 2016

Eco friendly, green household cleaner

The use of the term “Natural” to describe a household cleaning product or personal care item does not mean much, while the term “Organic” is closely regulated. Whole Foods Nature’s Power Laundry detergent includes the ingredient SLS (Sodium Laureth Sulfate) and has been called an eco friendly household cleaning product. This chemical is used in many cleaning products and can be made from coconut oil, palm oil, or petroleum. How natural is this? A plant based version is more green, but it is still the same chemical compound.

SLS is a major concern because the creation process generates trace amounts of 1,4-dioxane, a carcinogen.

There are no guidelines currently for using Natural in a product description, hence it is being overused all over the place as it does help Sell products. Most companies claim a product to be Natural if the ingredient came from nature. Not everything from nature is safe. How many poisons exist in nature? A ton. Read the rest of this entry »

15 Mar
2016

Costco Kirkland Signature Eco Friendly Cleaners

Posted by Norman F, March 15th, 2016

Last Updated: 3/15/2016

Kirkland Signature eco friendly cleaners- Kirkland laundry detergent

Costco’s Kirkland Signature Environmentally Friendly – Eco Friendly cleaner made from environmentally friendly ingredients that are biodegradable and biorenewable. Plant based formula, made from bio-renewable resources.  No Phosphates or dyes, cruelty free, natural fragrance.  Costco Connection has an article on this product in Costco Magazine page 55.

Kirkland Signature Environmentally Friendly fabric softener is also available. It uses biodegradable softening agents.

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24 Jan
2016

Bee Keeping to Save the Honeybee from Bee Colony Collapse Disorder

Posted by Norman F, January 24th, 2016

bee hive, honeybee

Many of us have read about the mysterious declining population of honey bees due to Colony Collapse Disorder. Since 2006 colonies of commercial bees have been slowly wiped out.

During the winter of 2006-2007, some beekeepers began to report unusually high losses of 30-90 percent of their hives. As many as 50 percent of all affected colonies demonstrated symptoms inconsistent with any known causes of honey bee death:

  • Sudden loss of a colony’s worker bee population with very few dead bees found near the colony.
  • The queen and brood (young) remained, and the colonies had relatively abundant honey and pollen reserves.

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2 Jan
2016

Non Green Costco Effect – Rewards Card Fallacy

Posted by Norman F, January 2nd, 2016

Kirkland Signature eco friendly cleaners- Kirkland laundry detergent

Did you know that shopping at Costco can cause you to buy a lot more than you initially wanted to? Don’t get my wrong, I love Costco, especially the $1.50 hot dogs! They also will cause you to buy larger quantities of items. You may want to re-evaluate whether you are saving money by shopping there.

How to Stop Impulse Shopping

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Ritz Carlton Half Moon Bay Brunch Buffet

The holidays are here!  The media has reported that the average person gains 7 to 10 pounds between Thanksgiving and Christmas. Ouch. Big dinners, more alcohol, more snacks, more finger foods, tempting desserts, and appetizers. How can we work to combat those pounds?

Small Packages of Food

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19 Nov
2015

How to have a Green Thanksgiving

Posted by Norman F, November 19th, 2015

Buffet at Bellagio Las Vegas Carving Station

Having an Eco Friendly Green Thanksgiving is more and more desirable these days. How can you green your  Thanksgiving?

  • Buy your pumpkins, squash, and other vegetables from a local farmers market or from local sources. Some even carry special Heritage turkeys
  • Buy organic when possible, except for product on the Clean 15 list
  • Buy a locally raised organic turkey with no antibiotics, no hormones, free range, raised on vegetarian feed, and no added flavor enhancers or salt
  • Utilize reusable bags to hold groceries
  • Don’t over cook or serve too much food
  • Rent or buy your decorations from used clothing stores like Goodwill. Reusing items that you already have is even better.
  • Donate extra food, money, clothing to those in need
  • Compost the leftovers, pumpkin, squash, etc.
  • Keep in mind that food expiration dates or “Best by” dates are just guidelines, they really only apply to baby formula
  • Give out green oriented treats like organic fruit, repurposed trinkets

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5 Nov
2015

High Fructose Corn Syrup Dangers – Soda and Health Issues

Posted by Norman F, November 5th, 2015

Pepsi and Coke empty plastic soda bottles

High Fructose Corn Syrup is getting replaced by sugar in many packaged foods and drinks. High Fructose Corn Syrup has recently gotten a bad reputation as an artificial sweetener. It is heavily processed and offers little nutritional value

Problems with Sugars

Changing to sugar is almost a marketing gimmick. Researchers have concluded that sugar and High Fructose Corn Syrup have the exact same effect on obesity, diabetes, and heart disease. Biochemically they are almost identical. One is not better than the other, but the body  processes them differently. Consumers should seek less sweet alternative products. The American Diabetic Association has stated that studies have found little evidence that high fructose corn syrup differs from sucrose. Some corn syrup comes from Genetically Modified corn, making you part of an experiment to ensure that this does not cause long term problems.

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14 Sep
2015

Installing Your First Home Electric Car Charger

Posted by Norman F, September 14th, 2015

Nissan-Leaf-Electric-Car-Charger

Introduction

Anyone interested in taking the plunge with an electric car or Plug-in Electric Vehicles (EV’s) needs to investigate their charging options. Adding a charger to your garage can become a several hundred dollar project or several thousand dollar home improvement project. Each vehicle needs a different type of charger system and each house has a different electrical system.

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