is the concept of conducting life in a resource conservative and
efficient manner such that actions do not compromise the ability of
future generations to meet their own needs.
The essential elements of this manner of living are the promotion and
maintenance of industrial, commercial, and residential development strategies
that lead to a better environment in the future; one sustained by stable,
healthful communities within a clean, safe environment.
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Impacts Americans are making on the planet:
recycle or compost about 30% of their trash. Of the
remaining 70%, fifteen percent is incinerated and 55%
landfilled. Environmental Protection Agency
takes more than one million years to decompose in our
landfills. California Department of Conservation
American throws away an average of 100 polystyrene cups
each year, and the expected lifetime of each cup is
over 500 years. Green Seal's Choose Green Report,
If every household in the U.S. replaced just one roll
of 1,000 sheet virgin fiber bathroom tissues with 100%
recycled ones, we could save: 373,000 trees, 1.48 million
cubic feet of landfill space, and 155 million gallons
of water. Seventh Generation Co.
three years, Americans will be throwing away 130 million
mobile phones per year, amounting to 65,000 tons of
waste. This waste contains toxic chemicals such as arsenic,
beryllium, copper, lead, cadmium, nickel, and zinc.
These chemicals have been linked to cancer and neurological
disorders. University of Colorado Recycling, 2003
average U.S. household uses over 22,000 gallons of water
per year just for showers and baths. Center for a
New American Dream, 2003
faucet that drips once each second can waste over 8
gallons of water per day and over 3150 gallons per year.
American Water Works Association, 2003
indoor per capita water use in the typical single-family
home with no water-conserving fixtures is 74 gallons.
American Water Works Association, 2003
throw away enough aluminum to rebuild our entire commercial
fleet of airplanes every 3 months. Environmental
About 80% of what Americans throw away is recyclable,
yet our recycling rate is just 30%. Environmental
The energy saved from recycling one aluminum can will
operate a TV set for three hours. Tree People
The U.S. is 5% of the world's population but uses 25%
of its natural resources. Environmental Protection
Recycling creates 6 times as many jobs as landfilling.
Recycling glass instead of making it from silica sand
reduces mining waste by 70%, water use by 50%, and air
pollution by 20%. Environmental Defense Fund
Recycling just one aluminum can saves enough energy
to operate a TV for 3 hours. Eco-Cycle
we recycled all of the newspapers printed in the U.S.
on a typical Sunday, we would save 550,000 trees--or
about 26 million trees per year. California Department
The energy saved each year by steel recycling is equal
to the electrical power used by 18 million homes each
year - or enough energy to last Los Angeles residents
for eight years. Steel Recycling Institute
are 4-8 pounds of lead in every CRT computer monitor,
and there is lead in most of the solder points in electronic
product circuit boards. Between 1997 and 2004, 315 million
computers became obsolete, along with millions of other
electronic products. Silicon Valley Toxics Coalition,
150 watt personal computer system, (CPU, monitor, and
printer) uses 1314kwh per year if left on continuously.
To generate that much electricity, it takes the energy
equivalent of more than 1000 pounds of coal or 100 gallons
of oil. Planning for Higher Education Journal, 2003
average American home contain more synthetic chemicals
today than the average chemical plant 100 years ago.
synthetic chemicals are in production today. Many are
suspected to cause cause or other health effects, but
only 600 have been adequately tested. City of Boulder
Office of Environmental Affairs, 2003
me more tidbits & facts you find about our impact
and I'll include them here!
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to find out ways you can start to become more sustainable.
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