National Beach Clean Up Month: Save Our Beaches & Coasts

National Beach Cleanup MonthOver 14 billion pounds of cardboard boxes, tires, bottles, cans, plastic cups and other trash are dumped into the world’s oceans every year. Some of this eventually sinks, and some is eaten by marine life. However, most of this trash floats and is carried by ocean waves and currents to our beaches. This not only distorts the beautiful view we have come to expect at beaches, but also pollutes the environment, causing problems for people and marine life. As this problem worsens, recycling has become more important. We often hear the three R’s of recycling: Reduce, Reuse and Recycle, but how much do we really know about it?

Reduce. Reducing waste not only means reducing the amount of waste that goes into landfills but also means changes in our daily lifestyles. Reducing consumption, buying less and consuming less electricity are all ways we can reduce in our own lives.

Reuse. This involves extending the usage of most items in our house by either reusing or donating these items. It is important to use reusable products to cut down on the amount of waste we create in the environment. Reusable water bottles, such as Kor and Vapur water bottles, provide a safer and more economic alternative than bottled water, which accounts for 1.5 million tons of plastic waste per year.

Recycle. Throwing your can or bottle into the recycling bin instead of the garbage bin goes a long way. Many filters, such as Brita and ZeroWater, offer recycling programs for their filters, which is a great way to cut waste. Read this article from for more information on recycling water filters.

This is National Beach Clean Up Month, so do not let this month pass without making a conscientious effort to step up and do our part in cleaning up the world’s beaches and our environment.

Prahlad Jani – the Human Filter

Prahlad Jani brings a whole new meaning to the phrase, “reduce, reuse, recycle.” This 83-year-old holy man’s body is his recycling bin, according to a recent news article. Claiming to have lived the past seven decades without food or water, Jani was taken in for observation by Indian doctors on April 22, and since then has had no food or water and has not passed urine or stool.  His body has remained in perfect health since then, showing no signs of dehydration, hunger or fatigue.  He is still active enough to climb stairs and several tests on his brain reveal that it resembles that of a 25-year-old.

Jani claims to be a “breatharian,” a person who can live on “spiritual life force,” since receiving a blessing from a goddess at the age of eight.  He says that drops of water, or for him, drops of a magic elixir from the goddess, filter through a hole in his palate, sustaining him.  In addition, he is able to produce urine in his bladder as well as reabsorb it back into his body, at will.  Ordinarily, a person cannot survive without urinating, but it appears that Jani is able to filter and re-circulate the water that makes up 90 percent of his body at any time.

Here we have waste reduction and recycling in its simplest form.  Or maybe it isn’t so simple.  Scientists, of course, are baffled by this mystery, and as of yet, have no scientific explanation for it.  The “spiritual life force” that sustains him didn’t stop at the blessing of the goddess.  At age 83, Jani continues to receive energy through spiritual meditation, adding a fourth “r” – “rethink” – to the famous phrase, “reduce, reuse, recycle.”

Jani is undergoing a series of medical tests over a period of fifteen days as scientists are hoping to find solutions for people in emergency situations who must go without food or water for long periods.  Last week we gave suggestions for how to survive the apocalypse with six of our best emergency filters.  Can we add Jani, the human filter, to our list?  Only time will tell, so stay tuned for an update.  In the meantime, while you wait for a miracle blessing from a goddess, those six filters still come highly recommended.  For Jani and his fellow “breatharians,” we recommend the 3M N95 Respirator Mask in case of emergencies; since meditation involves breathing, they’ll want to make sure they aren’t inhaling air pollutants.

RecycleMania: Ways to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle all Year

It’s easy being green!

I just wanted to share this article recently posted on our website.

We contacted nearly 200 schools who have participated in the Waste Minimization division of the RecycleMania competition, this year, and in years past, and asked for their creative ideas on how to keep sustainability moving all year-round once the competition ends.  We then incorporated many of their responses into an article titled, “Year-Round RecycleMania: Creative Ways to Reduce, Reuse and Recycle All Year.”

We got so much response that we were not able to directly quote everyone who participated.  However, we would now like to open up this blog space for additional comments and discussion from everyone who was involved in RecycleMania.

Students, faculty and staff, please feel free to share your thoughts on any of the ideas mentioned in the article, as well as any others not mentioned.  If your school did not participate in the Waste Minimization division, but participated in the other divisions, we’d love to hear from you as well!  Or, if you’re not a college student, but you know of great ways to “go green” outside of college campuses, we’d also love to hear from you. This platform is open to anyone who reads our blog.

In an attempt to  make sustainability a convenient and habitual part of our everyday lives, we would like to continue to spread the word about events like RecycleMania, so check back often for other articles and blog posts related to sustainable efforts.

Thanks again to all who participated!