Green is Universal

Victoria & Abdul, September 22, 2017

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© Focus Features

The Focus Features film Victoria & Abdul tells the true story of the amazing and unlikely friendship between Queen Victoria (Academy Award® winner Judi Dench) and a young clerk, Abdul Karim (Ali Fazal), who becomes her teacher, her spiritual advisor, and her devoted friend in the later years of her life.  In 1887, Abdul travels from India to present a ceremonial medal as part of the Queen’s Golden Jubilee but surprisingly finds favor with the elderly Queen. The unlikely relationship causes a battle royale within the royal household, pitting the Queen against court and family. Victoria & Abdul explores questions of race, religion, power, and the farce of Empire through the prism of an unusual and moving friendship.

While filming primarily in the United Kingdom, the Victoria & Abdul team worked hard to reduce their environmental impact whenever possible. A large portion of the LED set lighting used on location was battery powered in an effort to reduce generator use. To limit plastic water bottles, reusable bottles were purchased for office and shooting crew to refill at the water coolers placed around set. Most paperwork was able to be distributed digitally, but for items printed they used a majority of 100% white recycled content paper.  Since Victoria & Abdul is a period piece, 90% of set dressing, props, and costumes were rented instead of purchased, which helped in their efforts to practice reuse. In many locations, the production utilized existing set dressing and had minimal need for the construction department to build from scratch.

The caterers on Victoria & Abdul sourced local produce to integrate into their menu. They also avoided using red meat on their menu several days of the week, reducing carbon emissions related to crew meals. The art department kept all leftover materials, fabrics and trimmings that were used to upholster furniture and sold them to another production. During wrap, many items were donated to the local RSPCA charity shop. All leftover color paper was donated to a children’s nursery.

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Sustainably Dancing the Night Away

Fall is not the only season beginning in the month of September. Ballet, along with many other dance companies are preparing for a new season of performances and concerts for fall 2017. To our surprise, some of these companies are taking the initiative to use their stage to inform others about sustainability and the importance of conserving the use of natural resources. One in particular has taken the initiative by storm –The Long Center in Austin, Texas. The Long Center is Austin’s only live performing arts center to embrace and emphasize local talent and art, with over 80% of performances coming from local artists. The Long Center has something for everyone—from ballet, symphony, and opera to Shakespeare, tap dance, musical theatre and outdoor concerts. Here are a few ways The Long Center takes center stage to make dance an environmentally aware, interactive and sustainable experience.

Recycling

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(Courtesy of the Long Center)

The Long Center is home to a wide range of performances and rehearsals including ballet, symphony, opera, musicals, and outdoor performances. During the time of its construction the performance center recycled an astounding 95% of the 44 million pounds of construction materials used from their former performance building, Palmer Auditorium.

One of the best examples of their commitment to recycling is the repurposed aluminum panels. These panels, which initially formed the Palmer roof, are currently used for internal and external finishes of the Long Center. The panels on the exterior of Dell Hall (part of the Long Center campus) along with the inside of elevators are also repurposed from that very rooftop.

The exterior of the performance center also embraces the importance of sustainability. Serving as a recreational area, the Butler Park hill and fountain are constructed and filled with excess dirt “excavated” for Dell Hall. In addition, the Palmer Auditorium’s former roof support structure currently serves as the “ring” that gives Long Center its very unique appearance.

Environment & Energy

(Courtesy of the Long Center)

(Courtesy of the Long Center)

The Long Center doesn’t stop with their central building—they also carefully implemented environmental and energy related initiatives at their property. The property lawns and plant beds are created by non-potable water from the local Lady Bird Lake.

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The performance center is the only live entertainment venue in the city of Austin with a LEED accredited advisor on staff to thoroughly analyze the continuation of the facility’s energy efficiency. For example all light bulbs have been replaced with LED bulbs saving approximately 226,000 kilowatt hours of energy.

Whether you are a veteran in the performing arts, a beginner, or simply someone who has an appreciation for performances, The Long Center creates a place for all to enjoy the arts in a sustainable way.

Sustainability at NBCUniversal

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Here at NBCUniversal, we definitely have an appreciation for the performing arts—especially when it comes to using our facilities that host performances in an eco-friendly way. Using great opportunities, we work, live and play every day to make our operations more sustainable.

Rockefeller Center is known for holding a wide range of performances as well—from daily live-to-tape late night shows to seasonal outdoor performances for the Today Show Plaza experience. These performances take place on a property that embraces sustainable practices.

To reduce the impact of our workplaces on the environment, we work to lessen the footprint of our facilities by improving efficiency in energy and water consumption, reducing waste and implementing new design elements. 30 Rockefeller Plaza currently utilizes a single stream recycling plan which mixes metal, glass, plastic and paper to be sorted off site at a recycling facility.

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A number of our facilities also use the latest in lighting efficiencies, including advanced automated controls that have motion, occupancy, temperature and ambient daylight capabilities. Many of our offices are participating in rideshare programs. New York Tristate offices offer an intra-facility shuttle bus service between various New York and New Jersey facilities to reduce the number of individual cars on the road and eliminate the emissions created by commuting.

We are always learning of new ways of how to incorporate more sustainable habits in our everyday practices. This season, as you prepare to visit your favorite theatre or venue watch a performance, be sure to find out how they’re doing their part to make our planet a greener place. For more information on how NBCUniversal is taking the initiative be green, visit our Facilities page at www.GreenIsUniversal.com/earn/about-us/facilities/.

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It’s a Good Time to “Be Kind”

Treat others as you would like to be treated—a simple reminder that we are told at a young age. However, it does not always carry over into our day-to-day activities. Yesterday marked the start of the annual ‘Be Kind to Human Kind’ week, a week long initiative encouraging others to display acts of kindness to one another. Being kind is something we strive for on a daily basis, but what if we began to include the environment around us as a recipient of our compassion? Take a look at how you can kindly be green.

 

Sunday

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Sacrifice Our Wants For Other’s Needs Sunday is normally recognized as doing something for someone else in need. It’s about helping others find a little extra support. We can do the same for our environment and ecosystem. Flowers and plants, believe it or not, need our assistance. When they don’t receive the proper amount of sunlight and water to flourish and produce pollen and nectar, they become brittle and dry. If you’re passing by a plant at work or home and you realize it needs a little extra attention, make a small gesture and move it towards the  sunlight or pour a generous amount of water in its pot.

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Lending a helping hand to greenery does not need to be limited to flowers and small plants. When strolling through public spaces, you can easily spot improperly discarded cigarettes, plastic cups and wrappers around greenery. This is especially true for areas that do not have proper waste management resources. You can help, even if Sunday has already passed. If you see debris lying around, take the initiative to pick up a few items. If everyone does their part, our green spaces can be cleaner, greener and healthier.

 

Monday

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In 2015, 5,376 pedestrians and 818 bicyclists were killed in crashes with motor vehicles. For Motorist Consideration Monday, is named to show patience towards others while traveling. When living in a congested city, you can spot all sorts of travelers. Pedestrians, bicycles and cars, all are trying to get to a destination. Drivers can support cyclists and pedestrians by making plenty of room for them when they are crossing, and by being courteous and avoiding tailgating. While using a more sustainable way of traveling, cyclist and pedestrians can also contribute by obeying the rules of the road and only crossing when prompted. As simple as it seems, being kind and patient on the road serves as a good practice—decreasing stress and making the road a much more enjoyable experience for everyone.

 

Wednesday

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According to OneGreenPlanet.org, there aren’t any government agencies that are responsible for cleaning trash from rivers—it will usually only happen if a community gets involved. “As many as 2 million seabirds are killed every year due to debris ingestion and entanglement. Another 100,000 marine mammals are killed annually from the same cause.” Willing To Lend A Hand Wednesday is designed to offer your time, help or advice. The amount that you give does not have to be grand, even the smallest effort is recognized and helps.

So how can you offer your help or advice to our marine life? Simple; roll up your sleeves and start looking through hundreds of environmental volunteer opportunities across the country. These include, volunteering for a local marine conservation or spending quality time cleaning a local river. If you’re aware of information to improve the environment, try to relay your knowledge to your local community centers, it can make a tremendous impact.

 

Thursday

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Thoughtful Thursday is the time to be mindful of those around you at home, work and in public who may have a concern you’re unaware of. A great way to boost someone’s overall mood is by offering a small green plant. According to GetNiwa.com, being around plants itself can help you be more energetic and productive. Natural environments induce a positive outlook on life, making people feel more alive and active. It also increases the feeling of vitality; boosting energy levels which results in an improved state of mind.

These were just a few ways you can share kindness with the environment; however there are plenty of new and creative ways you can offer a kind gesture to your community and ecosystem daily. Being kind can be infectious—so, invite a friend and spread the love.

 

How We Share Kindness

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Each year Comcast NBCUniversal holds Comcast Cares Day. Tens of thousands of our employees, their friends and families, along with our nonprofit partners join together to make change happen in our communities and celebrate our company culture of caring year round. This year marked our 16th year celebrating Comcast Cares Day. We hosted more than 100,000 volunteers, improving 1,000 project sites at community centers, schools, gardens, parks, beaches, and more, throughout the U.S. and in 20 other countries. Mark your calendars for next year’s Comcast Care’s Day on April 21st, 2018. For more information please visit ComcastInTheCommunity.com.

 

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Kicking for Green Goals this Premier League Season

This year marks the 26th season of the Premier League—the top English professional league association for soccer clubs. For some, it’s hard to believe that the premier league is the most-watched sports league in the world, reaching over 600 million homes. On a giant stage for sharing the love of the sport – teams, stadiums, and organizations around the world are also taking the initiative to promote a sustainable way of playing the beautiful game. Let’s see who’s kicking off this season on a green note.

Manchester United

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It goes without saying that Manchester United is one of the most recognized and respected Premier League Soccer clubs. Their environmental initiatives have proven to be just as impressive as their trophy collection. Old Trafford, the team’s stadium in Greater Manchester, England, uses recycled rainwater for pitch irrigation and maintenance of their facilities. The training center also features a lagoon that uses reed bed technology where dirty water is cleaned, recycled and distributed to maintain the fields. The club ensures that no waste products are sent to landfills, using an extensive recycling system that ensures the materials that cannot be recycled are sent directly to a waste-to-energy plant. Any wasted food from match days is also composted.

One of Manchester United’s environmental awareness initiatives, ‘Reds Go Green’ focuses on waste and recycling. With support from the Manchester United Museum, ‘Reds Go Green’ sends out glass, plastic, cans, green waste from the fields, and office stationary to be re-used or recycled. Even the print publications in the football club are made from sustainable sources, while old IT tools and printer cartridges are recycled, re-used or donated for charitable purposes.

Mineirão

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This Brazilian stadium might be recognized for being the venue for the 2016 Summer Olympics and the 2014 FIFA World Cup games but it has been taking home the gold medal long before, when it comes to sustainable operations. Positioned just outside Rio de Janeiro, the Mineirão is the first stadium to have 6,000 photovoltaic solar panels on the roof to generate energy in its area. Not only does the solar roof power the stadium but it sends energy to the local grid which provides for over 1,000 surrounding homes per year.

The famous stadium also has power-efficient lighting systems and uses smart faucets and toilets to save water. According to Brasil.gov.br, the architecture includes reused debris for construction work; reused rainwater (collected in a 6,000 cubic meter reservoir); selective garbage collection and solid waste storage systems; use of wood certified with the sustainable forest management seal; and high-efficiency lighting with low consumption and smart electrical system.

The Mineirão is only the second stadium in the world to be awarded a Leadership in Energy & Environmental Design (LEED®) Platinum certification. LEED is an international certification used in over 140 countries to certify green buildings, or those designed to reduce impact on the environment.

Dartford FC/ Princes Park

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Dartford Football Club is soaring as the fifth tier of English soccer and so are their sustainability efforts for their stadium. In 2005, the Princes Park Stadium was renovated with newly added sustainable features such as a “living roof.” Living roofs can also be called roof blankets. Theses roof tops reduce heating and add thermal resistance value to different structures while reducing storm water runoff. The Princes Park roof blanket also produces a natural air filtration system. To top it off, during construction of the park in 2005, the ground level was sunk down two meters to reduce noise and light pollution.

Forest Green Rovers F.C.

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Forest Green Rovers Football Club may not be in the premier league but they certainly keep their stadium in shape like a top flight team. Based in Gloucestershire, England, Forest Green Rovers have dreams of becoming Great Britain’s most sustainable football club.

Not only is their stadium eco-friendly but their match day menu is completely vegan. You wouldn’t be able to find any red meat in the stadium concessions on a game day. The players are served a strict vegan diet and the fans are served vegan pies. If that was not impressive enough, the all organic stadium field is maintained by a solar-powered robotic lawn mower. With 100 solar panels on the Forest Green Rover property, the stadium has made a huge impact by using solar power to generate its energy.

Major League Soccer/ MLS WORKS: Greener Goals

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We can’t talk sustainability and Soccer without the Major League Soccer (MLS) organization. MLS teams and employees have partnered with charitable organizations to volunteer their time and give back through eco-friendly initiatives—one of those initiatives being MLS WORKS.

MLS WORKS is a member of the Green Sports Alliance, a non-profit organization that encourages the influence of sports to promote health and sustainability in communities. The Alliance inspires their partners and millions of fans to adopt energy, healthy nutrition choices, recycling, water efficiency, species preservation, safer chemicals and other environmentally safe practices. In the past MLS WORKS has had over 1,500 MLS players, employees and supporters get involved and has donated more 6,500 volunteer hours.

All of the noted teams, stadiums and organizations have made a tremendous contribution to the environment with their green initiatives and plans. Whether you’re a super fan of the game or simply watch to enjoy the company of friends and family, let’s continue to support the efforts made to include sustainability in sports.

To watch the latest premier league match tune into NBC Sports Soccer

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How Our City Is Affecting Our Environment

When entering an urban city there is no doubt you’ll find rapid bustle going to and from businesses. Cars honking, street vendors prepping and selling, and people rushing through the streets to get to their destinations. One crucial aspect of urban cities that is often overlooked is the lack of sustainable resources and the resulting negative impact on the environment.

According to Owl Caution, “Urban areas have a high environmental impact that can be felt globally, as well as within its own borders.” Cities, in many ways have, become centers for consumption of energy and water. As time progresses, there are fewer places to find that aren’t devastatingly impacted by congested cities.

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Over Population

As the urban developments and the general population grows, there is more pressure placed on the environment. According to the Population Reference Bureau, the lifestyle, consumption patterns, and the regions where people inhabit these mannerisms have an effect on the environment.

When there is a high demand for resources, it generates more waste—and the people who are making these demands come from all walks of life. In WorldVision’s study, they found that those who are homeless move to urban areas in search of better opportunities for employment or survival. Even though developed countries tend to have better infrastructure and are able to provide more for people’s basic needs, there are many contributions of urban cities that can make both the homeless and the environment suffer; including over-population.

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Overcrowded zones also tend to increase the risk of disease. More than 300,000 children have been diagnosed with asthma in New York City alone due to heating oils used in buildings.  Oil no.4 and oil no.6 are popular types of heating oils used to create harmful emissions that contribute to global climate change. A large volume of uncollected waste is another contributor to multiple health hazards, which is not treated properly due to the lack of city resources.  The process becomes increasingly cyclical where no solution is reached due to lack of action.

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Unhealthy Living Conditions

Half of today’s global population already lives in urban cities and without fully being aware, our health is paying the price of the impact of urban environments. Water pollution alone results in poorer quality of living within a community because of basic needs such as consumption and sanitation. Water contamination also decreases soil’s ability to produce nourishing elements, kills off fish, unsafe for the eco-system and is extremely harmful to human health.

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Additionally, as environmental damage increases so does the likelihood of floods and other natural disasters. The people who are affected first and foremost are the homeless and those without shelter. In result they turn to whichever urban structure they can find to create shelter. VoicesOfYouth.org says, “consequences of environmental deterioration, whether they be economical, social, or related to metal or physical wellbeing, are experienced” are expected results.

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Our Part

We as a community are not always properly educated on how to take care of ourselves or the environment around us. Disposing waste on the streets, and lacking sanitation practices that result in poor hygiene is done without much regard for the impact it has environmentally. However, there are ways in which, we as community can become a resource for help.

PovertyUSA encourages teachers, community members, church and service group leaders to initiate meaningful discussions about poverty, the environment, and how we can come to reach a solution. These discussions should be designed to help others “understand the size and scope of the problem but also start thinking about the ways in which they can take action to help create awareness…”in their communities.

There are so many ways we can get involved to improve the environment in our overcrowded cities—from activating greener spaces for recreation and outdoor activities to developing affordable mixed-use neighborhoods, the possibilities are endless. It simply starts with us taking initiative.

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Making Green Cool this Back to School

Summer is starting to wind down, which means back to school season is soon approaching. This is an exciting time for students shuffling back to the classroom—but even more so, it’s a critical time for the environment and our planet. Impact created by back to school shopping is rapidly on the rise.

Each year an estimated two billion pencils are used in the U.S.; which represents about 82,000 trees cut for pencils alone. With school supplies in full demand, many of us are prepping to get ready for the new term. The challenge—can we do it in a sustainable manner? Here are a few ways to start the academic year off on a greener note.

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Shop smart, shop efficient

Each year teachers send out lists of school supplies needed to use in the classroom. Today, there are countless environmentally friendly options to replace the items that are normally recognized in the average back to school sale. They range from lunch boxes, eco-friendly water bottles, bag packs, non-toxic ice packs, glue, recycled notebooks, and recycled writing utensils. Even reprocessed pencils can be made of recycled newspaper. When in doubt, make the greener choice.  Renting or buying used textbooks is also becoming a popular option that helps students save and helps the environment by having fewer books produced.

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Healthy and organic food

Packing lunch during the back to school season can be challenging. School mornings can be hectic and fast paced, encouraging us all to reach for prepackaged snacks with high salt and sugar content. According to EcoLunchBoxes.com, “if your family is using single-use, disposable items like brown paper bags, plastic baggies and pre-packaged drinks to pack lunch, you’re probably wasting about $450 a year.”  Opt-in for eco-friendly snacks and packaging for your student’s school day. Instead of using carton juice boxes, try using reusable water bottles and food containers to pack no-waste lunches instead.

 

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Reuse, Recycle, Impress!

Everyone wants to look their best on the first day of class. You can achieve that goal without purchasing brand new clothes and being environmentally aware. An estimated $76 billion was spent on new school supplies last year, including apparel. According to SmallFootPrintFamly.com, “a great way to get new school clothes for free is to organize a clothing swap with family, friends or neighbors.” If you can’t find a community clothing swap in your local area—flea markets, consignment shops and thrift stores also embody the sustainable principle of “reuse.” If you choose to buy one or two pieces of clothing for the new school year, consider purchasing clothing that has been made with organic cotton. Organic crops used to make fabric aren’t treated with pesticides, which are normally toxic and harmful for farmers and workers. Organic fabrics like cotton also use less water during the wash cycle, making it easier to consume less energy on laundry days.

 

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Responsible technology usage

Today, the use of personal computers in school is a necessity and more schools have incorporated the use of technology in the classroom. However, it is our responsibility to make sure our students are creating smart habits with their electronics. Children between the ages of 8 and 18 spend an average of seven hours a day with digital media. When not in use for academic activities, help your student learn the importance of conserving energy by turning the laptops and tablets off to help reduce energy consumption.

This year support those who are returning back to school live sustainably by sending them back to the class room with these eco-friendly tips!


 

Comcast NBCUniversal is the national sponsor of Boys and Girls Clubs of America’s Back2School campaign. In partnership with retailers across the country, BGCA will be holding school supply drives through September to benefit the children served at their Clubs.

During the month of July, NBC and Telemundo owned and operated stations across the country called on viewers to donate supplies or funds in support of students and teachers. The stations have partnered with Communities in Schools and national nonprofits working at the local level including United Way and Boys & Girls Clubs, among others. Many stations are also working directly with DonorsChoose.org, a not-for-profit organization that makes it possible for individuals to donate directly to public school classroom projects and make it simple for local viewers to participate in “Supporting Our Schools.”

To learn more about the work that NBCUniversal has done in supporting our communities and schools, visit our Pro-Social Initiatives page.

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How to Green Your Summer Vacation: Part Two

We can all take a few green practices with us as we enjoy our trips. In this second half of our two part series you are going to learn additional ways to make this year’s summer vacation a little greener.

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Plan to visit eco-friendly destinations:

There are many tourist destinations around the world that are making serious efforts toward preserving the environment while making it fun for all of its visitors as well. Costa Rica is an example of one of many destinations that has received a lot of attention for its sustainable development as an international community. It is home to beautiful rainforests, national parks, and nature reserves. According to EagleCreek.com, amenities such as “organic, farm-to-table dining, naturally-heated rock pools for bathing, and tours that are guided by experts in sustainable tourism,” are just a just a few of the features that one can enjoy in Costa Rica. The sustainable tourism experts educate you on how your vacation affects the local environment as well.

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Offset carbon emissions:

When deciding to have an ecofriendly vacation locally or overseas, it’s important to consider the method of travel—including the trip to the destination, the trip back home, and traveling in general on site. Traveling by rail contributes less greenhouse gas emissions than cars and airplanes. According to the U.S. Department of Energy, traveling by train is 30 percent more efficient than traveling by car. If you’re flying to your destination, try carbon offsetting. According to Carbonfootprint.com, carbon offsetting compensates your emissions by funding an equivalent of carbon dioxide savings somewhere else. There are also online carbon calculators that allow travelers to estimate the amount they would be paying to a company to invest in a project in another location to offset your flight’s air pollution.

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Pack your own snack:

Eating green may be one of the most impactful acts you can take part in during your summer vacation. Whether you take a train, plane, or go on a hike to camp this summer, packing your own snacks can contribute to a more sustainable vacation. Buy seasonal and local foods to cut back on foods that are impacted by climate change and long commutes of trucks to your super market. According to TreeHugger.com, “Local food also generally uses less packaging, is fresher and tastier, and comes in more varieties. It also supports small local growers.” Also, consider organic fruits, vegetables, grains, and dairy products that are produced in natural soil with far less chemicals.

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How to Green Your Summer Vacation: Part One

Going on a summer vacation is something most people look forward to experiencing. Whether the trip involves staying close to home or going to explore a new place overseas, we can all take a few green practices with us as we enjoy our trips. In this two part series, you are going to learn about a couple ideas to make this year’s summer vacation a little greener.

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Go camping:

If you are planning to stay close to home, camping is a great summer activity. It can take place in the woods, near the beach or even in your back yard. Camping brings you and your friends or family closer together while enjoying nature’s beauty. While on your camping trip remember to be responsible for the environment by keeping a couple of tips in mind. Keep the woods and the campsite clean and free of debris and litter—exactly the way you found it. There is no specific way or rule to go camping. Simply being entertained and relaxed by being outdoors while enjoying nature’s playground is all it takes.

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Lodge responsibly:

If you are planning to leave your hometown for a week or two to travel to an exciting destination, you will need a comfortable place to rest. With traveling comes lodging—choosing environmentally friendly accommodations can be accomplished with a little time and research. Green Hotels Association offers information about eco-friendly hotels in each state along with the efforts each hotel makes to be green.

According to wwf.Panda.org, there are plenty of hotels that offer “effective waste treatment systems that recycle, and are energy efficient.” These eco-friendly hotels also use environmentally safe energy sources such as solar energy and hydroelectric power. Hotels have also given their guests the option to skip washing their towels and sheets every day in order to save water and energy. According to the American Hotel and Lodging Association, “the request reduces water, sewer, energy, and labor costs by 17 percent.”

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Pack simple items:

Traveling lightly encourages you to keep green habits while you are away from home. If at all possible, travel as lightly as you can. You can do so by wearing one pair of jeans instead of packing several pairs; packing quick dry fabrics that can be hand washed and hung out to dry overnight; and dressing in layers rather than wearing bulkier items. When dressing in layers you can also make more outfits for your trips by reusing those articles of clothing.

When traveling by flight, lighter baggage from passengers also helps reduce fuel emissions released into the environment by the airplane. An alternative to using travel size bottles and containers, found normally at pharmacies or drugstores, is using recycled items around the house such as an empty old spice container for liquids, lotions, and shampoos. Another great reason to pack lightly is because it helps dispose of less waste in the environment.

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Girls Trip

Girls Trip, July 21, 2017

Girls Trip (2017)

© Universal Pictures

Producer Will Packer (Ride Along and Think Like a Man franchises, Almost Christmas) presents Girls Trip, a new comedy from director/producer Malcolm D. Lee (The Best Man franchise, Barbershop: The Next Cut).

When four lifelong friends—Regina Hall, Tiffany Haddish, Jada Pinkett Smith and Queen Latifah—travel to New Orleans for the annual Essence Festival, sisterhoods are rekindled, wild sides are rediscovered, and there’s enough dancing, drinking, brawling and romancing to make the Big Easy blush.

Filmed in New Orleans, Girls Trip made a dedicated effort to reduce their carbon footprint where possible.  The film’s production offices were located at Second Line Stages, a certified LEED GOLD building that included motion detector lighting, low flow water fixtures, composting in the kitchens, and recycling throughout the offices and stages.

The office enforced a strict “Print Only by Request” policy which resulted in a 60% drop in paper usage compared to a production of a similar size.  Production passed on remaining paper and office supplies to another New Orleans film.  On set, crew practiced energy efficiency by using hybrid vehicles, energy efficientEcoLuxe trailers, and LED set lighting.

Girls Trip gave back to the community both during and after filming.  Production donated approximately 600 lbs of excess catering food (equaling 500 meals) to the New Orleans Mission, and also donated lumber to The Green Project, a local non-profit reuse center.  These practices and more led to Girls Trip earning a 2016 EMA Green Seal, recognizing progress in sustainable production practices.

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The Hidden Impact of Cars on Our Planet

It’s no secret that an overwhelming majority of cars built today depend highly on fossil fuels—which is not good for our planet.  According to Sciencing.com, cars, trucks and other forms of transportation is the single largest contributor to air pollution in the United States. Cars release pollutants that cause a wide range of issues for the environment and human health in general.

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Soil & Water

Even after a car has exhausted its time on the road, it still has the ability to do damage to the environment when they’re in junk yards. Auto parts, such as batteries or engines with oil or gasoline, can often times be disassembled in junk yards and the process alone can lead to leakage into soil and any bodies of water nearby. Cars can also contribute to pollution through sulfur dioxide—sulfur dioxide is created when fuel containing sulfur is burned and when gasoline is extracted from oil.  When sulfur dioxide mixes with rain water it creates acid rain which damages crops, vegetation, and forests.

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Our Health

Diesel fuel, normally used to power buses and trucks, emits airborne particles such as metal and soot. These airborne particles can cause skin irritations and allergies. The smallest particles can nestle into our lungs and can cause respiratory issues as well. Surprisingly, the noise from cars is also harmful to our health. The effects of noise on hearing may vary among people, but any sound that is too loud can cause damage to hearing. According to CultureChange.org, “researchers have found vehicle noise pollution to be a major cause of stress.” Vehicle noise pollution can also be traced to stress related illnesses—one being high blood pressure. When people are exposed intrusive sounds, it puts them in a state of agitation with an increased level in blood pressure.

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Climate Change

Car pollution is one of the major causes of climate change. All of the gases that cars emit, including greenhouse gases, contribute a great deal to climate change as well. As stated by Sciencing.com, greenhouse gases trap heat in the atmosphere, which causes temperatures to rise worldwide. Warmer temperatures around the world affect farming, wildlife, sea levels and natural landscapes.

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How you can help

There are many ways to help lower the amount of car pollutants in the environment. Whenever the time comes to purchase a new car, be sure to check the fuel economy and environment label. This label tells you about the ratings and pollution level the vehicle will produce. A high rating means lower pollution levels. Additionally, keeping your car well maintained by getting regular checkups at your local mechanic is also a great way to make sure your vehicle is not contributing too many air pollutants to the environment.  If your car is used sparingly, you could also re-evaluate if you really need your own car. There are alternate ways of travel such as taking public transit, riding a bike, walking, or using a car-sharing app or service.

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