LEAVE NO TRACE BY CAMPING GREEN!!
The concept “Leave No Trace” originated with the U.S.D.A. Forest Service in the 1960’s. In the 1970′s and 1980′s, the Forest Service, the Bureau of Land Management, and the National Park Service started to teach their visitors how to have a minimal impact on the land. Also in the 1970′s, groups such as the Sierra Club were advocating minimum impact camping techniques.
Eventually the nonprofit organization Leave No Trace Center for Outdoor Ethics was created in 1994. It is a national and international program designed to assist outdoor enthusiasts with their decisions about how to reduce their impacts when they hike, camp, picnic, snowshoe, run, bike, hunt, paddle, ride horses, fish, ski or climb. The program offers seven principles that can offset our impact and make responsible recreation a part of our outdoor experience:
1) Plan Ahead and Prepare; 2) Travel and Camp on Durable Surfaces; 3) Dispose of Waste Properly; 4) Leave What You Find; 5) Minimize Campfire Impacts; 6) Respect Wildlife; and 7) Be Considerate of Other Visitors.
Today we can follow these same principles when camping green plus bring our favorite Norwex products because they are environmentally friendly and contain no toxic chemicals!
Nothing tastes better than fruits or vegetables or picked fresh from your own garden!! A strawberry or pea pod you pick right from the garden will taste sweeter partly because you know you grew it yourself. In addition, when you grow your own food you have control over what, if any, pesticides or fertilizers are used. Babies and toddlers are especially vulnerable to the possible effects of pesticides as they are less able to detoxify toxic chemical due to their smaller size.
Another reason to grow your own fruits and vegetables is that they will be much fresher, and fresher produce will generally contain more nutrients. According to Lisa Ramirez, Times Herald-Record, “Much of the produce sold at large supermarket chains is grown hundreds of miles away….places such as California, Florida and Mexico. That means days — perhaps even more than a week — have passed since it was picked, packaged and trucked to the store, where it can sit on the shelves even longer. Often, too, produce is picked before it’s ready, preventing it from ever reaching its nutritional potential.”
“Access to safe water is a fundamental human need and, therefore, a basic human right. Contaminated water jeopardizes both the physical and social health of all people. It is an affront to human dignity.”
Kofi Annan, United Nations Secretary-General
Over 70% of our earth’s surface is covered by water. Although water seems to be abundant, 97.5% of all water on earth is salt water. Less than 3% is fresh water!
Nearly 70% of that fresh water is frozen in the icecaps of Antarctica and Greenland. Less than 1% of the world’s fresh water is accessible for direct human use! This is the water found in lakes, rivers, reservoirs and those underground sources that are shallow enough to be tapped at an affordable cost. It is this amount only that is renewed by rain and snowfall and is available on a sustainable basis.
Have you ever considered the environmental issues involved with using salt to eliminate ice on your sidewalk or driveway? Have you wondered about eco-friendly alternatives? I was thinking about this recently as I was driving along the freeway. There was not much snow on the ground, but there were snowplows everywhere putting down salt. Everyone who has owned a vehicle in an icy state like Minnesota has seen the damage that this road salt can do to our cars…causing rust and decay; my husband refers to it as ‘cancer’ because of how fast it can spread on a car. It left me wondering what could be done that was more environmentally friendly.
The salt will end up in your soil and accumulate the same way that fertilizers do and make the soil more toxic and harder to grow plants in because:
- Salt makes it more difficult for plants to absorb and uptake water and nutrients from the soil
- Salts causes metals and other harmful chemicals to become soluble making them run off into water supplies
- Salt contributes to drinking water pollution
- Salt causes algae blooms in lakes which depletes the lake of oxygen and can kill off fish and wildlife
- Salt is not good for pets to walk on as it can burn their paws
- It corrodes your driveway and side walk
- Shovel your driveway as fast as you can when the snow falls. This will prevent ice from forming on your driveway and sidewalk eliminating the need for salt
- Use an electric snow blower because gas powered ones contribute to air and noise pollution
- Use sand and or birdseed as an alternative to salt. It won’t harm the environment and will provide just as good traction plus it will attract winter birds like cardinals
- Wear boots, the best way to prevent yourself from slipping on the ice is investing in a good pair of boots that will give you traction on the snow and ice.
So … what will you choose … to salt, or not to salt? I’d love to hear your eco-friendly ideas here!
I got this fun testimonial from a really fun hostess!
“My miniature little miracle” aka the Travel Enviro Cloth set
Do you want to clean off that table before you eat out in a restaurant, wipe off a telephone before you use it, wash something greasy on your vehicle window, clean off your steering wheel or wipe off your pets feet when they come in from outside? Those are just a few things I use this amazing cloth for!
We have designated the “b=blue for b=bathroom” color for the bathroom. The three boys in my house clean up after themselves by using this to wipe up their little “drips” and “splashes” on the toilet.
We even did a no-no that Suzanne told us not to with it… we used one of them in our painting kit for around the house. It works absolute wonders to clean off your floor and window moldings after sanding, mudding/taping and painting (of course let the paint dry first). After were done, we washed it just the same as the others and it came out clean as a whistle! This little rag has a million uses… my childcare children loved to clean the tables, counters, toys, walls and everything they could get their hands on. It is an easy, affordable “toy” that will keep them busy for hours!!!!