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Meyers Lemon Verbena Liquid Dish Soap

Product Description:

  • Aromatherapeutic household product
  • Biodegradable  (made without parabens, chlorine, formaldehyde, artificial colors, phthalates, MEA, DEA, glycol solvents)
  • Lemon Verbena Scent
  • Cuts grease
  • Cruelty-free

Pros: Scent is enjoyable and not strong, only a small amount is needed and it goes a long ways, very good suds and long lasting.

Cons:  medium to high cost for size of bottle however it is very concentrated so it does stretch further than expected.

Where to buy in Calgary: Sobeys, Canadian Tire, London Drugs, City Market Sage Hill

Buy online: Amazon

Overall rating: 4.0/5

Buttercream Clothing: Ethically Made in Canada

An originally Calgary based business, Buttercream Clothing uses local seamstresses to create their light and comfortable clothing. All the clothing can be ordered online and ships right to your door. Orders over $200.00 will be eligible for free shipping.

The clothes are for everyday wear in a variety of sizes (xs to 3x). Most of the clothing is for women, although there is a small selection of 3 men’s long sleeve and t-shirts collection.

Buttercream Clothing Website

Available clothing options include:

  • Accessories – hair scrunchies
  • Tops – long sleeve, t-shirts
  • Bottoms – tights, skirts
  • Dresses
  • Rompers
  • Outerwear
Buttercream Clothing Website

Shop local and support ethical wages for the women who create your clothes! According to the Buttercream Clothing website they employ over 25 women including seamstresses and virtual assistants.

Buttercream clothing: buttercreamclothing.com

How Do I Use a Lime Bike?

The Lime bikes in #yyc have taken off! I must say I’ve walked by the bikes and have wondered…how do I ride one? It’s embrassing to sit there by the bike and fiddle and try to figure it all out. Here is a quick guide on the how to’s in order to get you started…embarasement free.

Step 1: Download the Free App & Add Your Subscription

The Lime – Your Ride Anytime App is the electric bike and scooter phone app. You can download it on Google Play or Apple App Store.

To set up the app add your phone number, allow the app to access your camera (to scan the barcode on the bike) and enable location services (to find the bike). Once you have the app set up you will need to add payment via the Wallet tab. This is a subscription service and you can read the Lime terms of agreement here.

Lime has a information page set up to explain how to use the Lime bikes in Calgary. This includes rules and regulations for use and where you can park them after you are done.

Step 2: Find a Bike

Using the location function of the App you can find a nearby bike. I was actually quite surprised to see one in my neighborhood which is a 15 minute drive outside of the downtown area.

Step 3: Scan the Barcode

Once you scan the barcode which is on the back of the bike (on the battery) it will acivate the bike and allow you to use it. After the bike is “open” for you to use, be sure to perform the safety checks, adjust the seat for your comfort and put on your helmet.

Step 4: Follow Traffic Laws

Remember to follow traffic laws. In Calgary this means riding on designated bike trails, lanes or if driving in traffic using the correct hand signals (see below). The City of Calgary has a cycling on city streets and pathways guide I would encourage you to review.

Photo credit Bike Sense B.C

Step 5: Done your Ride? Park in the Right Spot

On the Lime Calgary website there is a detailed description of where and where not to park. The general overview is that parking is allowed on City of Calgary property. To get a detailed description review the guide here.

Have any Tips?

Are you an avid Lime Bike user? If you have more tips for fellow readers, message me your tips and I will add them on to the article.

#yyc #bikecalgary #ecotransport #lovetheplanet #yycrides #limebikes

This week in the News September 2 – September 9, 2019

You may have noticed I’ve been on a bit of a hiatus with this website for the past few months. I was spending time on my other business livitnutrion.com. Now this business is up and running (yey!) I have more time to dedicate to my passion, this site and connecting with other #yyc environmental activists. I’m happy to be back connecting with all of you!

Summary: Amazon fires bring world leaders together to address the current crisis, growing your own trees can help to reverse our climate crisis, if we reduce food waste we can have a major impact and solar panels have the potential to help crops thrive.

  1. Amazon leaders sign rainforest preservation pact amid wildfire crisis source DW – we are in some really troubled times for our planet right now. With the Amazon fires raging and clearing acres and acres of valuable trees the toted “lungs of the earth” are rapidly being destroyed. This is devastating.
  2. Grow your own forest: how to plant trees to help save the planetsource the Guardian. It’s not all lost and doom. There is action you can take personally to help the state of the planet. “Tree planting ‘has mind-blowing potential’ to tackle climate crisis.” That’s how the Guardian reported findings from the Crowther Lab in Switzerland two months ago. Billions more trees, scientists claimed, could remove two-thirds of all the carbon dioxide created by human activity.”
  3. Not all meat is created equal: How diet changes can sustain world’s food production – source Science Daily “Calculations show that reducing the amount of food we waste is about 80 times more effective at conserving phosphorus than recycling that same waste. “
  4. Exciting New Study Says That Crops Thrive Underneath of Solar Panels—and the Panels Produce More Energy – source Good News Network

This week in the news March 4-11th, 2019

This week in summary: dairy co-operative making big changes but is it enough, earthquake felt in AB near RMH why, why, why?, pathogens could be transported across the earth via plastic trash, track your town/cities light pollution on a new interactive map.

BBC Climate change: Pledge to cut emissions from dairy farms
“This will require “radical changes” over the coming decades, including developing new technologies, the dairy co-operative, Arla Foods, said. It admitted the target was “ambitious”, but said it was achievable. However, the Vegan Society said there was no way to make dairy a climate-friendly product.”

Global News Calgary 4.3 magnitude earthquake shakes central Alberta near Rocky Mountain House “Information posted by Natural Resources Canada states the earthquake happened around 4 a.m. 32 kilometres northwest of Rocky Mountain House, at a depth of 10 kilometres. “It was a shallow event. It was felt by local residents,” said Dr. Honn Kao, a research scientist at the Geological Survey of Canada. “According to our recordings, we do not expect any particular damage.

The Guardian Pathogens hitchhiking on plastics ‘could carry cholera from India to US’ ” Dangerous sewage pathogens have been found “hitch-hiking” on plastic litter washed up on some of Scotland’s finest bathing beaches, raising concerns from scientists the phenomenon could have far-reaching implications for human health worldwide.”

MACH New interactive map shows how light pollution affects your hometown. The Radiance Light Trends website, which went live last week, presents a world map that shows where night skies are still relatively dark and where there are hot spots — areas where the blues and black indicating darkness are replaced by greens, yellows and reds indicating the glow of artificial light at night.

Are plant- based proteins actually more sustainable?

Canada’s new Food Guide and guidelines were released on January 22nd, 2019 and there were some pretty big shifts in recommendations compared to the 2007 guide. The revisions of the food guide have been underway for quite some time so there was a lot of excitement from industry, health professionals and the public to see the revised version including this #yyc blogger!

One of the main changes is that the new food guide promotes plant based proteins. The food guide now has a “recommended proteins” category instead of Meat and Alternatives. There is also no longer a “milk products” category and milk as well as milk alternatives (like soy) have been included in the protein food group. In the guide the protein foods listed include “lentils, legumes, lean meats, fish, nuts, nut butters, eggs, unsweetened milk, yogurt, cheese, tofu and fortified soy beverages.” It’s also interesting to note this does not include other beverages like almond, rice or coconut beverage. These drinks are quite low in protein in comparison to soy or cow’s milk.

Can Plant Based Eating Make an Eco Impact?

You may have read that plant based eating (vegan, vegetarian, flexitarian) can “save the planet” but is this really true? Is a plant based diet actually more sustainable and does it have less of an environmental impact? In 2010 the Food and Agricultural Organizations (FAO) stated that “sustainable diets are protective and respectful of biodiversity and ecosystems, culturally acceptable, accessible, economically fair and affordable; nutritionally adequate, safe and healthy; while optimizing natural and human resources.” (1)  Let’s assess if a plant based diet meets this criteria!

Energy consumption of Vegetarian vs. Non-Vegetarian Diets

In the research study “Sustainability of plant-based diets: back to the future” by J Sabate and S Soret published in The American journal of Clinical Nutrition in 2014, the researchers compared the energy outputs of both plant based and animal protein production. They found that “agricultural inputs required for producing the non-vegetarian diet were 2.9 times more water, 2.5 times more primary energy, 13 times more fertilizer, and 1.4 times more pesticides than for the vegetarian diet.” (2) The research does support that eating a vegetarian (plant-based) diet will reduce our global energy consumption.

Beyond the energy use, meat production also has a much higher environmental impact in relation to freshwater use, amount of land required, and waste products generated. “The evidence suggests wide-scale adoption of a plant-based diet would reduce human impact on the environment and improve some of our most serious environmental problems such as climate change and fresh water scarcity.” (4) The meat that has the most environmental impact includes lamb and beef. The lowest on the list is chicken and turkey.

Non-Vegetarian Lower Impact Options

I get it, you might be thinking, but I just CAN’T give up meat. It’s worth exploring if there is any difference in environmental impact if you choose to eat grass fed beef vs. grain fed beef. There is some good news! Grass fed animals have less environmental impact than grain fed. Grass fed beef is available in Calgary grocery stores or available to order direct from the local farms in the surrounding area. One barrier to consumption is that grass fed beef does come with a larger price tag than grain fed meats but if you budget well and shop sales you can likely make the switch to grass fed beef.

What about the Alberta Beef Industry?

The one barrier or argument that I’ve heard from people as to why they couldn’t switch to more plant-based protein is that Alberta beef is part of our history, our pride and it’s been a way of life for many people in our Province. Which is absolutely a valid point because we do have a huge industry in Alberta where many people make their living from raising livestock. A more realistic approach for some Albertans may be to use a flexitarian approach replacing some meat proteins with plant based options but not fully converting to a vegetarian diet or using more grass fed beef in replace of grain fed beef.

Pulse Industry in Canada

It’s also important to look at Canada’s agricultural industry as a whole.
According to the 2011 Census of Agriculture, pulses represented approximately 6% of field crop area in Canada in 2011 and Alberta accounted for close to 19% of this total production. Pulse production in Canada accounted for $1.5 billion in national farm cash receipts.(6) Most of the pulses were exported and in 2011 Canada was a worldwide leader in production of lentils and dry peas. (6)


What are other Calgarians saying about plant based eating:

Q. Are you going to make the switch to more plant based proteins?

” Not at all. I will continue my meal practice as usual. Whole food in moderation is the key for me. I choose to buy my meat protein from environmentally sustainable and humane source. Yes, the price is much higher, but I know I support local farm and sustainable farming. They let their animal roam and their animal are grass-fed, no use of antibiotic when not warranted, and treat animal with respect and care.

Sue P – local Calgary resident

“I think it is a good idea for health reasons. I haven’t really thought about the environmental impact. I do plan to and I already have. I have a lentil based meal usually once a week. I Google different ways to use lentils and so far the results have been delicious. I like buying and using lentils too because it supports Canadian industry (51% of global lentil production happens in Canada!!)”

Mary R – local Calgary resident


Will you make the change? Leave a comment below let me know!


If you are looking to make a switch to eating more plant based proteins check out a great blog post: “How to Cook Beans 4 of 4 part cooking series.”

References:

  1. Food and Agricultural Organizations: http://www.fao.org/nutrition/education/food-dietary-guidelines/background/sustainable-dietary-guidelines/en/
  2. Sustainability of plant-based diets: back to the future, J Sabate, S Soret – The American journal of clinical nutrition, 2014
  3. Public views of the benefits and barriers to the consumption of a plant-based diet EJ Lea, D Crawford, A Worsley – European journal of clinical nutrition, 2006.
  4. Reducing the environmental impact of dietary choice: perspectives from a behavioural and social change approach A Joyce, S Dixon, J Comfort, J Hallett environmental and public health, 2012
  5. Public health benefits of strategies to reduce greenhouse-gas emissions: food and agriculture S Friel, AD Dangour, T Garnett, K Lock, Z Chalabi
  6. Pulses in Canada Statistics Canada https://www150.statcan.gc.ca/n1/pub/96-325-x/2014001/article/14041-eng.htm

This week in the News Feb 18 – 25th, 2019

This week in review: Antibiotics are swimming in our oceans & the concentration is getting higher and higher each year, dying bumblebees in Poland & dwindling biodiversity, the best climate friendly foods,

Science News: Pharmaceutical residues in fresh water pose a growing environmental risk. Radboud University Nijmegen . Antibiotics are increasing in concentration in our water supply & killing good bacteria.

The Guardian: We’ve had an apocalyptic warning: now will we care about biodiversity? Martha Gill The report finds that 20% of the Earth’s vegetated surface has become less productive, and what is growing on it is one notch away from being wiped out.

BBC News: Apples or raspberries? The best climate-friendly foods.
Food production is responsible for a quarter of all greenhouse gas emissions, contributing to global warming, according to a University of Oxford study.

CBC: Feds to conduct environmental assessment of Boat Harbour cleanup. Ottawa decides possible adverse environmental effects must be reviewed.

This Week in the News: Feb 4 – 11, 2019

Weekly Summary: World leaders are trying again, a how to guide to buying sustainable clothing, Chinook salmon are in trouble, Hawaii is leading the world in zero waste policy creation, Alberta is making some big renewable energy moves.

The Economic Times: Challenges due to climate change to be discussed at World Government Summit in Dubai. Aiming to identify solutions the summit participants will be international organizations, senior government officials and media personalities from around the world.

INDEPENDENT Your Ultimate Guide to Buying Ethical and Sustainable Fashion. In a cultural climate where no one would be seen dead without a reusable water bottle and veganism is the mot du jour, it’s becoming increasingly uncomfortable for many of us to buy into brands that fall so short of our values – and fast fashion is one of the worst offenders.

The Guardian We’re sounding the alarm’: half of Canada’s Chinook salmon endangered. Half of Canada’s chinook salmon are endangered, with nearly all other populations in precarious decline, according to a new report, confirming fears that prospects for the species remain dire.

CNN Hawaii has passed some bold progressive legislation over the past few years. Some sunscreens banned, raised the smoking age, committed to PARIS climate deal goals, wants 100% renewable energy by 2045.

Global News Alberta Contributes $3.3M for huge solar farm in remote Fort Chipewyan. Alberta will work with Indigenous groups in the province’s remote northeast corner on what the government says will be Canada’s largest off-the-grid solar power project.

Reusable Produce & Bulk Bags – Credobags

Produce Bags

Product description: These bags are 100% regular cotton or certified organic cotton mesh, washable and very durable. You can reuse these bags at the grocery store or farmers’ market to replace plastic single use bags. Reduce your carbon footprint by choosing an option that is sustainable- reusable and recyclable.

Pros: 100% Regular Cotton or Certified Organic Cotton Mesh (Natural),, Washable, mesh design allow cashiers to easily identify contents of bag, convenient drawstring closure.

Rating: 5/5

Bulk Bags

Product description: These bags are a practical storage solution for bulk purchases such as rice, dried beans, nuts, coffee, pasta and grains. There are smaller size for herbs or loose teas. The larger size for lettuces, potatoes celery etc. and keep them in the refrigerator or dry storage to prolong freshness.

Pros: Reusable option when shopping for bulk items, washable, 3 sizes (small-medium-large), convenient drawstring, Hemp/Organic Cotton blend or 100% Organic Cotton

Rating: 5/5

Local stores in Calgary to purchase: Apothecary Inglewood

This week in the News Jan 29-Feb 2, 2019

Weekly Summary: tacking food waste, technology to pull water out of the air, is the extreme temps due to climate change, US government shutdown reminds us of the importance of park staff.

The Guardian The Real Junk Food Project turns supermarket waste into tasty meals. London cafes bring people together while tackling the UK’s food waste problem.

CNN Business Drinkable water is scarce. These companies are pulling it out of the air. In the mountains outside Scottsdale, Arizona, the four people and two dogs living at Cody Friesen’s house get all the water they need for drinking and cooking from two big panels mounted on the roof.

The Times of India US shivers as extreme cold invades, but is this climate change? Experts say it could be, but whether global warming plays a role in this particular extreme weather phenomenon is apparently still up for debate.

Phys.Org Parks rush to clean up toppled trees, trash after shutdown. The US government shutdown was a good reminder at how critical staff are in the role of maintaining, preserving, sustaining and protecting national parks and delicate ecosystems.

This week in the news Jan 22 – 28, 2019

Weekly summary: 1.5 degrees warmer and chaos on the Earth, Earth’s atmosphere and oceans are changing the way heat moves, CO2 may rise more than expected, carbon tax is explained by a rebuttal to a ludicrous statement

New Scientist Earth in 2050: This is what a world warmed by 1.5°C looks like. From wild weather to huge ecosystem shifts, dramatic effects from global warming are already baked in – but by acting now we can prevent the worst

Science Daily Climate change reshaping how heat moves around globe.
The Earth’s atmosphere and oceans play important roles in moving heat from one part of the world to another, and new research is illuminating how those patterns are changing in the face of climate change .

The Times of India Faster CO2 rise expected this year: study. The forecast by researchers is based on a combination of factors including rising anthropocentric emissions and a relative reduction in the uptake of CO2 by ecosystems.

Global News Calgary Brooks-Medicine Hat UCP candidate who claimed church facing $50K in carbon tax issues correction. The initial press release stated that the church was facing a large bill, then logic prevailed & corrections were released to this ludicrous statement.