5 Things You’d Never Believe Could Be Recycled

Bicycles

Bikes are considered one of the most environmentally friendly ways of transportation we have but even with that they cause a problem in our landfills. Annually more than 15 million bikes are thrown away in the US alone. So what’s the proper way of disposing of your bike? Donate it! Maybe your bike isn’t suitable for you anymore but it sure can help out someone else. You can donate it to Bikes to the World, which collects, refurbishes and donates bikes to lower-income people and institution in developing countries.

bicycle

Crayons

More than 12 million crayons are made in the US, every day! That’s about 60 tons of crayons made with petroleum based waxed that will eventually end up in our landfills. We all have that small box filled with broken and unused crayons in our homes, not really sure what to do with them but can’t throw them away. Well the National Crayon Recycle Program will gladly take all your broken and rejected crayons off your hands! They have now collected over 93,000 pounds of unwanted crayons and made them into beautiful works of art for kids to enjoy!

crayons-1

Bras

That’s right, Bras. The Bosom Buddy Program collects old bras and gives them to women in shelters or other programs.  So if you have a bra that doesn’t fit or a bra that you just won’t wear any more than wash it out, fill the donation form, package it up and either drop it off at a location near you or mail them directly to The Bra Recyclers.

bra

Wine Bottles and Corks

Have wine bottles or corks taking up space in your kitchen? If you didn’t know, the wine bottle itself is glass recyclable but what about the cork? ReCork American collects those tiny corks and turns them into flooring tiles, automotive gaskets, craft materials, soils conditioner, and sports equipment. They have collected over 47 million corks!

wine

Styrofoam 

According the EPA, each year Americans throw away 25,000,000,000 Styrofoam cups. Even 500 years from now, the foam coffee cup you used this morning will still be sitting in a landfill somewhere. Why? Because the materials used to make up styrofoam or polystyrene foam take a really long time to decompose. If you want to start recycling your styrofoam then go to Earth911 to locate a styrofoam recycling facility in your area or you can also check your local UPS store or mailing company for styrofoam recycling. Many of these companies accept styrofoam packing peanuts to reuse.

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Love the Planet on the Day of Love

Flowers for V-Day can be great — if you know they’re green. Photo: Flickr/Ralph Daily

Flowers for V-Day can be great — if you know they’re green. Photo: Flickr/Ralph Daily

Sure, all the hearts and cupid’s arrows are meant for people, but you can make sure the planet gets some love, too, with these tips for an eco-friendly Valentine’s Day:

1. Think local. Flowers are a sweet way to tell someone you care about them. However, buying cut flowers from the supermarket may not be as environmentally friendly as you think — big flower companies don’t always grow their flowers sustainably and may use a ton of pesticides. A great green option is buying local, organically grown flowers from your neighborhood farmers market or locally sourced flower shop.

The same goes for planning a nice dinner at home. Grab ingredients from local providers and skip the hustle and bustle of a night on the town with a meal of fresh food. If cooking’s not your cup of tea, find sustainable restaurants nearby with the help of Eat Well Guide.

The Love Birds Seed Paper Keepsake Card is available at Dolphin Blue.

The Love Birds Seed Paper Keepsake Card is available at Dolphin Blue.

2. Give a card that represents your blossoming love. Long after the day is over, the Love Birds Seed Paper Keepsake Card will serve as a reminder of your devotion. Each card is made of plantable seed paper and includes a removable, 100 percent recycled printed insert so the recipient can keep your special message while enjoying the wildflowers that bloom.

3. Make a handmade gift from the heart. Instead of buying an impersonal box of chocolates or stuffed animal, strive to make all of your gifts yourself this year using materials you already have on hand. Handmade V-Day gifts are also a great activity for kids.

4. Spend the day in nature. A date in the great outdoors is always one you can appreciate — just think about how a hike to a beautiful vista, complete with a romantic picnic, will enchant your athletic sweetie. Spend your evening watching the sunset, sipping on a local fine wine, and gazing at the stars together. Mother Earth would be proud.

Proximity Hotel in Greensboro, S.C., features 100 solar panels. Photo: Proximity Hotel

Proximity Hotel in Greensboro, S.C., features 100 solar panels. Photo: Proximity Hotel

5. Take a sustainable getaway. If you want to escape for the weekend, do your homework to find an eco-friendly resort or hotel to stay at. You might even be lucky enough to live near one of these 30 gorgeous eco-hotels.

Happy Valentine’s Day!

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Fact Friday: Trees!

 

Tree3Here are some cool facts about trees!

  • Trees are the longest living organism on earth.
  • Trees provide shade and shelter.
  • Trees lower air temperature by evaporating water in their leaves.
  • The average tree in an urban/city area has a life expectancy of only 8 years.
  • Tree roots stabilize soil and prevent erosion.
  • About one third of the United States of America is covered by forests.
  • A single tree can absorb one ton of carbon dioxide.
  • One acre of trees removes up to 2.6 tons of carbon dioxide each year.
  • The death of one 70 year old tree would return over 3 tons of carbon to the atmosphere.
  • Tree rings provide information about environmental events.
  • Trees grow from the top.
  •  A branch’s location on a tree will only move up the trunk a few inches in 1000 years.
  • Trees receive an estimated 90% of their nutrition from the atmosphere and only 10% from the soil.
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How to say ‘I Heart U’ and the USA too this Valentines

valentinesValentine’s Day is approaching fast! This year rather than going to your local neighborhood store and buying the generic card and gift why not consider purchasing a gift that shows how much you love your partner and your country. Put your money to good use by buying from small businesses and purchasing made in America products. Buy them a gift that has great quality instead of purchasing it for its sweet deal. If you still have no idea what to buy, we here at Dolphin Blue have you covered! Don’t limit yourself to only buying these products, there are tons and tons of other made in America products out there just for this special occasion!

Here are some great American-made gift ideas to help you keep your Valentine’s Day Made in the USA:

  •  Valentine’s Day cards! Dolphin Blue has the Love Birds Seed Paper Keepsake Card. This card is made from seed paper, so after the recipient removes the insert with your message they can plant the card and enjoy flowers for months to come!

card

  • Bissinger’s Chocolates: Delicious chocolates and marshmallows made by hand and use high-quality cocoa beans, made in St. Louis, MO.

chocolates

  • OM Cocktails is a USDA certified cocktail and is the first of its kind! It’s made with certified organic ingredients and contains no artificial flavors or preservatives!If you’re more of a wine person, buy from your local wineries. You can go to All American Wineries and search for all the wineries that are near your area.

cocktail

  • Who doesn’t love cute and cuddly bears for valentines? Give your loved one a snugly Vermont Teddy Bear for Valentine’s Day!

Vermont Bear

  • For the risky buyers, Hanky Panky has been proudly making lingerie in the USA since 1977. They’re top of the line when it comes to lingerie and lets not forget their unique bouquet of thong roses! 

flowers

 

  • If you want to be completely out of the box then dedicate a tree to someone! Our Tree Planting Gift is a special and unique gift you can give to your partner, family member or a friend.

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Make this the most memorable year for both you and your sweetheart and have fun shopping for products made in the USA for Valentine’s Day! 

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Fact Friday: Aluminum Cans

Aluminum can

  • Aluminum is the third most abundant element in the Earth’s crust.
  • It is known as a sustainable metal: with two-thirds of aluminum ever produced still in use to this day.
  • Aluminum takes around 200-500 years to fully degrade in a landfill.
  • One ton of recycled aluminum saves 10 cubic yards of landfill space.
  • The aluminum can you recycled today will be back on the shelf as a new can at the grocery store in 60 days.
  • Aluminum beverage cans are 100% recyclable.
  • Every minute 105,800 aluminum cans are recycled in America.
  • The average aluminum can contains more than 50% post-consumer recycled aluminum.
  • We throw away enough aluminum cans every 3 months to rebuild our entire commercial air fleet.
  • It’s estimated that over the past 20 years, we have trashed more than 11 million tons of aluminum beverage cans. That’s worth over $12 billion in today’s market!
  • Recycling aluminum takes 95% less energy than creating aluminum from raw materials.

 

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What is Sustainable Living?

Sustainable Sustainable living has become a hot trend nowadays with a lot of people worldwide changing their lifestyles in order to improve themselves, their community and their environment. You’ve probably heard about sustainable living at some point in your life but never really bothered into searching or figuring out what it actually is. Well in case you didn’t know, sustainable living is having a lifestyle that uses as few of our earth’s resources as possible, causing the least amount of environmental damage for the future generations to come.

Living a greener lifestyle doesn’t mean you have to drastically change your life or spend a lot of money but by changing small things around your house you will help reduce your carbon footprint. Here are some ways on having a more sustainable life.

Get rid of the paper towels and use washable cloths, not only will you save money but washable cloths are a more efficient way of cleaning and better for the environment. Remember; let’s keep unnecessary waste out of our landfills!

Replace your old light bulbs with energy efficient LED or CFLs. While the CFLs light bulb can take a few seconds to a minute to fully kick start they use 75% less energy than incandescent bulbs. LED light bulbs save you energy and money; they can last up to 10 years!

Visit your local farmers market and buy locally! Believe it not we are wasting and burning fossil fuels transporting food from a farm to a grocery store. Buying locally is not only healthier but you are supporting your local farmers and community.

Why take the car when you can walk or ride a bicycle? Reduce your own carbon footprint by taking a stroll or riding your bike to your destination instead of driving your car. Now you can find bike rentals throughout many cities! Also many cities are building more bike and walking trails for everyone to enjoy!

Conserve your resources! Save electricity by turning off the lights whenever you leave a room and turn off the TV if you’re not paying attention to it! Also unplug all items not in use, even if you aren’t using them they’re still taking up energy! Make sure your faucet isn’t leaking and save water when you’re washing the dishes or brushing your teeth!

Don’t forget the three most important Rs: Reduce, Reuse, and Recycle! You can also search up more ways on reducing your carbon footprint online!

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Facts On Why Super Bowl XLVIII Will Be The ‘Greenest Super Bowl Ever’

METLIFE

  • In 2009, MetLife Stadium signed a Memorandum of Understanding pledging to become an environmental steward by implementing green initiatives that would reduce its carbon footprint to help improve our planet’s environment.
  • Has reduced the use of energy, water and solid waste production by aggressive recycling programs, low flow faucets, toilets and waterless urinals in restrooms, food composting, and mass transit alternatives.
  • In 2012, MetLife Stadium reduced its carbon footprint by 250,650 Metric Ton Carbon Dioxide Equivalent.
  • Became the first Certified Green Restaurant stadium.
  • The stadium staff and the NFL have pledged to recycle plastics, glass, aluminum and paper during and after the sporting event.
  • All waste oil from the food production will be converted into biodiesel and all food scraps will be composted.
  • Styrofoam containers will not be used.
  • They will also be donating all leftover food.
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You don’t have to be a Seahawks fan to enjoy these GREEN Super Bowl XL VIII Party Ideas

footballThis graphic was from 2013 Super Bowl game in New Orleans.

Invitations

Go paperless this year and send your invitations through email or create an event on Facebook, its free! You can also go on evite or punchbowl, they have free online invitations you can browse and if you want to splurge a bit they also have more creative invites your pay for. All you have to do is just create an invitation, add your guests and send it, it’s that easy!

Pizza

Let’s talk about pizza. It’s delicious and glorious and a football game party without pizza is not a party. We all know we can recycle cardboard but did you know that because of the grease of the pizza it’s hard to recycle pizza cardboard boxes? You can tear off the top clean part of the cardboard box and recycle that but the bottom greased up part is a big no. This year try out your awesome cooking skills and make a pizza! You can find various recipes online and even make a football shaped pizza for your guests!

Buy eco-friendly plates and cups this year! Don’t forget to recycle your beer bottles! Even with the lime you can still recycle them!

Recycle

Label your trash and recycling bins individually to make it easier for your guests to know where to throw their waste. Have designated areas around your home for the bins whether it be inside and outside our just solely inside.

Repurpose

Paint tin cans and use them to hold your cutlery and if your making popcorn, give your guest decorated glass jars so they can fill them up with delicious popcorn! Look around you, you can probably find some interesting things to reuse to decorate for the party. Go to online sites like Pinterest for nifty ideas on how to repurpose your old stuff!

Check out Dolphin Blue’s Eco-friendly Preserve Products!

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Are You Going To Recycle That Water Bottle?

FactFriday 1Here are some surprising facts about water bottles you probably didn’t know about.

  • Plastic water bottles take around 450 years to 1000 years to decompose.
  • We have about 2 million tons of water bottles in our landfills.
  • The making of the bottles to meet our demands uses more than 17 million barrels of oil annually.
  • Americans used about 50 billion plastic water bottles last year, yet the U.S. recycling rate is only 23%.
  • Nearly half of all bottled water is reprocessed tap water.
  • Some bottles might be contaminated and cause health problems.

Go green and ditch plastic water bottles.

  • Water pitcher filters are as efficient as 300 standard 16.9 ounce bottles. They filter about 240 gallons of water a year for about .19 cents a day.
  • Tap water goes through more regulation than bottled waters since tap water is regulated by the EPA and water bottles are regulated by the FDA. It’s cleaner and cheaper.
  • Buy BPA free bottles for when you’re on the go, they’re reusable and can last you for years.

If you just can’t part ways with your water bottles then recycle. Don’t forget, when you recycle plastic, you’re helping save energy, oil and landfill space.

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Infographic Monday: What is post-consumer recycled?

Friday 10, JanuaryPost-consumer recycled is when a material or product has served its intended use and has avoided or has been recovered from a landfill. It helps avoid using natural resources such as forests and strengthens the market for recycled products.

Dolphin Blue sells products with up to 100% post-consumer recycled content. Remember the more PCR content a product has, the better it is for the environment!

 

 

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