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If You Have Your Nails Done Read This!

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While I never have, I know many who make it a weekly ritual to visit a nail salon to get painted.

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Yesterday’s News

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Author: the Inkslinger

And now as public service of the Inspired Protagonist, we bring you yesterday’s news today. Because, well… I’m so completely behind the curve that from where I sit the curve appears on the very distant horizon only as the faintest suggestion of something not flat. And really, from here, even that could be an atmospheric trick. The reason for my lateness, as everyone who knows me knows, is a recent relocation to a new abode that has reduced my home office to rubble and triggered a week’s worth of connectivity problems that have left me wandering alone in the terrifying e-darkness. Still, better late than never with these tidbits I’ve been meaning to share…

US News and World Report had a good article earlier this month about avoiding bisphenol-A, the toxin currently number one with a bullet at the top of the toxicological charts. Good advice about keeping this bad boy out of your bloodstream.

A new study says that emerging “carbon markets” are unwittingly encouraging the clearcutting of virgin forests, an act which would release one official massive ton ‘o carbon into our beleagured atmosphere. Oops. Maybe we better rethink this one. (I still don’t get the whole let’s-trade-carbon-pollution credits thing. How about we just all agree not to make anymore rather than just treat what is a rather pressing situation like it was a couple of packs of baseball cards in a schoolyard?)

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Just Say Bisphe-No…

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Author: the Inkslinger

I’m staying on the anti-bisphenol-A bandwagon for at least one more post here. There are a lot of people jumping on, and it’s nice to finally have some company. Tons of stuff coming over the wires about this chemical. Last Thursday, a group of several dozen scientists issued a statement saying bisphenol-A was causing serious health problems in people.

And this week, a federally annointed panel of experts is supposed to be releasing their own verdict on the chemical (given all the political manipulation of science in the White House these days, however, I’d take this report with a big grain of salt. Or aspirin…).

The flurry of activity is focusing a surprising amount of media attention on this fairly obscure but-maybe-hopefully-not-for-much-longer toxin. If I haven’t thrown up enough links here for you, our pals at Grist have been all over this one lately and have even more.

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Bisphenol-Freakin’ A

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Author: the Inkslinger

ScienceMan sent me a great article this morning on bisphenol-A. As he said in his e-mail, “It confirms our worst fears about the chemical, the chemical industry, and our regulatory system.”

Now right away I know what everyone’s thinking… “Bisphenol what? Oh good lord… Spare me. I can’t even pronounce it let alone summon the necessary gumption to read an entire article about all this crap. Please just shoot me first.”

I dig the sentiment. It’s quite legit. Diving into this stuff will harsh your mellow, kill your buzz, rain on your parade, and wilt your will to live like it was a plucked flower in a pizza oven.

But here’s the thing: Everybody’s gotta start keying into this whole chemical contamination thing. Because it’s really right up there with the climate crisis in terms of the things we gotta fix yesterday if not sooner. People have to understand that what you can’t see can hurt you and it’s everywhere these days. In our food. In our water. In our soil. In ourselves. And it’s literally killing us softly with its discordant song.

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What in the World is Going On?

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Author: the Inkslinger


Visual by www.PDImages.com

I’ve been rolling elsewhere lately, but the world’s been rolling on, and it’s high time to play a little catch up and see what’s been happening as it has. Though the “save page as” command and a bulging virtual folder on my hard drive have pretty much replaced my old-fashioned scissors and the mound of newspaper and magazine cuttings they used to create, I still call them “clippings,” and here’s my latest batch:

Glycol ethers are in the news. Say what? I know… There was a time when I hadn’t heard of ‘em either. But they’re pretty nasty and a new survey of ingredients in cleaning products has found them in a ton of popular brands, which, to use a technical term, sucks dust bunnies.

Speaking of conventional “cleaners,” (and man, there’s a misnomer if ever there was one) a new study on those you spray says they’re linked to asthma. The study in the American Journal of Respiratory and Critical Care Medicine arrives in fairly incomprehensible science-speak so I’ll bottom line it: The more you use them the harder you’ll find it to breathe.

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Rules to Design By: Green Chemistry Principles

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Author: the Inkslinger

While researching an article on Green Chemistry for the upcoming Non-Toxic Times (which, keep your fingers crossed, will come out next week), I stumbled across an entry on the same subject in the ever amazing Wikipedia that contained something I didn’t know existed: a set of principles to guide chemists in greening their labs and the things those labs create.

Principles, of course, are always a good thing because they set certain benchmarks and establish concrete guidelines for whatever it is we’re trying to do. Whenever a decision comes up as we proceed, we can compare all our possible choices to the principles at hand. When we do, we often find that there’s no decision to be made at all. The principles make it for us. They may even suggest that we drop the current operation entirely and try something else.

In the case of green chemistry, the 12 principles were created to steer chemists away from toxic substances and processes, and encourage healthier alternatives. I can’t for a moment pretend to know what some of these are about. (“Stoichiometric reagents, for example, is a pretty scary term. I think I had a beaker or two of that at a really ugly frat party once…), but than again why should I? They’re not for me. They’re for the people who are actually out there mixing up the molecules. The people who need to stop messing with nature and start working with it instead. They’re only for you and I in the sense that as they ripple through the chemical community, they’ll eventually trickle down to us in the form of safer, healthier, non-toxic alternatives to today’s hazardous products and processes. You’ll never use them yourself, but you will someday end up using the stuff they lead to, and we’ll all be a lot healthier for it.

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Things Worth Knowing

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Author: the Inkslinger

They say we live in the age of information. Wireless internet, satellite TV, digital radio, ThisTube, ThatTube, a zillion channels and everything’s on. Information is everywhere. People traffic in it. Profit from it. Spread it. Share it. Find it. Know it. We cram our tired heads with trivia and ephemera and worse, but to what end?

Because the fact is, information is only as useful as the things we can do with it. If we can’t do anything personally constructive or publicly useful with a specific piece of information, that’s the tip-off that we should ignore it and move on. There’s nothing to see here.

Slap that kind of filter over your private inputs and watch the static and the noise drop like a stone. Listen to how quiet it gets. See how very little useful necessary vital information there actually is swirling around out there in the i-storm we call the modern world. 99.99% of it just goes poof. Still, there is always information we can use in some way. There are always some things worth knowing. Here’s a few that are…

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Happy Earth Day! (Here’s To the Only Planet We’ve Got…)

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Author: the Inkslinger

It’s Earth Day. That annual rite of spring where everyone becomes an environmentalist for at least a moment or two. For those of us who prefer to wear the label year-round (and increasingly that’s most of us), it’s a fitting occasion to pause for a moment, get out the imaginary camera, and take a virtual snapshot of sorts of today’s moment in time.

Such photos can tell us more than might be thought. For the big picture itself can often be found hiding in the details that the smaller image captures. So as we open the shutter and capture the light, what does our Earth Day photo say? That people are talking. People are thinking. People are acting. Awareness is reaching critical mass. That, above all else, is the reason to celebrate. Change is arriving. Here are the latest clues:

Let’s begin with a simple question: Why Earth Day? Here are a million wonderful, beautiful, magnificent, miraculous reasons you won’t find anywhere else. And that’s literally only about the half of it.

Weird weather? Melting mountains? Perspiring permafrost? Soaring sea levels? Color me officially concerned. Which is why it’s heartening to find our fellow Americans at last waking up and smelling the climatological coffee.

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This Week Around the Blogosphere

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Author: Kendra Sibilia

Here I am again with more comments on what people are enjoying or learning while using Seventh Generation products.

On the Ecotality blog, Steve Caratzas writes an article titled, “When You Gotta Go, Go Green.” He describes his admiration for Seventh Generation and appreciates the efforts and knowledge expressed by Seventh Generation. It is great to hear that someone is using the information on the website to educate people on how to make their homes clean for themselves and the environment.

On another blog, Three Million Moments, there is a post titled “A Green Home is a Good Home.” The author explains how her and her husband decided to “really” clean their bathroom. They decided to use the last of the “happy bubble scrub” even though it is hazardous. The smell of the remembered freshly clean bathroom as a child was anticipated. To their surprise, the couple felt guilty for using this product and had to air out the house before they felt it was safe for the family to breathe inside again. It is nice to hear that the consumer will return to equally effective natural cleaning product brands like Seventh Generation. Welcome back!

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Around the Blogosphere...

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Author: Kendra Sibilia

While looking at other bloggers who use our product, encourage others to live non-toxic lives, and generally promote everything we work for here at Seventh Generation, I became inspired. Reading about others’ passions and missions to save the Earth is incredibly rewarding. On the blog Something Good, O My Goodness writes about the irony of having to hide away the toxic cleaning products you spray all over your home. She rarely has children at her home, however when the occasion does occur, she realized safety is an important issue. She advises placing the toxins out of reach of children and away from food, but especially using non-toxic products to begin with.

Another blog that caught my eye was The Good Human. David from California writes about the bizarre advertisements promoting pouring bleach where children play, eat and pee. David notes that bleach is an extremely toxic chemical with harsh side affects if contact is made. Again, solutions are proposed and replacing this harsh chemical with safe products that cause no side effects is feasible. It is truly exciting to read in their own words how people are enjoying the positive results of using Seventh Generation.

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