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Sustainable wellbeing and green living

Let's find ways to Flourish!

Compostable Take-Out Containers

Ordering take-out is a nice treat every now and then. Whether you are craving sushi from your favourite restaurant, wanting to support local businesses, or simply don’t feel like cooking, ordering take-out can make your meal just a little more exciting. Additionally, ordering food to go is a great way to support your favourite restaurants while staying safe during the COVID-19 pandemic. Despite how much you enjoy the food you order; do you ever feel guilty about the plastic or Styrofoam containers your food comes in?

Environmental dangers of plastics and Styrofoam

Plastics, especially single-use plastics, have a significant impact on our environment. Many plastics cannot be reused or recycled, therefore ending up in landfills, waterways, and habitats. These plastics are unable to decompose and can only break down into microplastics through the process of weathering and sun exposure. These tiny pieces of plastic can be harmful to wildlife and humans, as they end up in their...

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Green and Just Recovery

There is no denying that the COVID-19 pandemic has had a significant impact on our lives. With the worrying rates of infection, mask requirements, social distancing measures, at-home offices, and the many more changes that we have had to make in our daily lives, it is not surprising to hear people wishing for things to get back to “normal.” After all, life during the COVID-19 pandemic has proven to be quite difficult - despite being able to wear pajama pants during your Zoom conference calls! However, the pandemic has brought to the forefront the serious issues of racial injustice that we have in our systems.

While many people may have this thought of wanting to return to some sense of normalcy, it is important to realize that returning to the ways things were is really not what we want, considering the environmental crisis and social inequalities that are a part of our “before”. Instead of only focusing solely on rebuilding the economy, we must strive for a...

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4-Day Work Week

It is not uncommon to feel like your job takes up a disproportionate amount of your time, energy, and thoughts. After all, many people work 40 hours a week - or more! In addition to the required amount of time you spend at your job, many workplaces have an expectation that you will work unpaid overtime hours in order to show your dedication to your job and be perceived as a go-getter.

This means that you may find yourself showing up to work early, leaving work late, or spending time outside of work answering emails or trying to get ahead on your workload. Although it is important to recognize that work is an important part of your life for practical or personal reasons, there is such a thing as too much work! You need time outside of work to spend on hobbies, family, friends, and your health for your personal wellbeing.

The 4-day work week

One solution to employee work-life imbalances is the 4-day work week! Although this may sound too good to be true, many employers and business...

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Wildlife Rehabilitation Centres

It is always exciting to see a wild animal in its natural habitat. Whether you are hiking in the forest, snorkeling in the ocean, or just walking down the street, there is a good chance you will be able to witness a wild animal interacting with their environment. Even something as common as a bird flying through the sky or a squirrel scampering up a tree can fill us with joy and remind us that there is a world beyond our own work and home stresses!

On the other hand, we know of many wild animals which we don’t get to witness, but are still thankful for their existence. You may have a great fondness for Siberian tigers but never have the chance to see one with your own eyes. This doesn’t decrease their value or importance. All wild animals are integral to the healthy functioning of our ecosystems, which makes them important to protect! 

Wildlife rehabilitation centres

Wildlife rehabilitation centres provide care to wild animals which are sick, injured, and orphaned....

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Restorative Spaces

Do you have a place in mind that is restorative to you? Perhaps it is spending time on the balcony on a warm day, or maybe it is a sunlit nook at your workplace. It turns out that spaces can make us feel restored and revitalized. A quiet space with a view of nature is often what feels restorative to us when we take the time to notice.

Although it may not always seem like it, our environments have the ability to impact our behaviours, thoughts, feelings, and emotions. For example, you may find that you tend to get tired and distracted from your work when you are working in your dimly lit and somewhat cramped home-office. On the other hand, your living room which is flooded with natural light and filled with comfortable furniture makes you feel uplifted and encourages you to sit and chat with family members or friends.

Whether you are at home, at work, running errands, or out at a restaurant or movie theatre, subtle characteristics of your surroundings will be able to influence your...

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Tree Valuation

In many locations, trees seem to be a standard part of our physical environment. Whether you are walking down the street in your neighbourhood, visiting downtown, or out in your yard, there is a good chance you will be surrounded by trees. Despite how common trees are, many people are unaware of their many benefits. While it is widely known that trees have the ability to remove carbon dioxide from the air and produce oxygen, other environmental benefits include their ability to reduce airborne particulates and smog, produce a cooling effect through evaporation, filter rainwater, and provide habitats for animals. Important social benefits of trees include the provision of shade, the reduction of stress and blood pressure, and their ability to inspire more outdoor physical activity.

How much is your tree worth?

Believe it or not, the trees in your yard have economic value! Along with all the environmental and social benefits, having trees on your property can significantly increase...

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How to save the planet one flush at a time - Dual Flush Toilets

Ok, so it may not be the complete answer to our environmental issues, but dual flush toilets do go a long way in helping reduce the pressure on fresh water consumption. And, they work so well, you will never turn back. Many years ago, my husband, being the romantic that he is, surprised me with a present - yes, it was a dual flush toilet! He installed it while I was out and surprised me with it when I returned. I was teaching a course on Green Building and Planning and had wanted one for our home, knowing that we could improve on the standard 6L flush toilet that we had.

Reasons to make the change

It may not be the first thought you have when it comes to making eco-friendly choices in the home, but it is an important one. When we consider the growing regions of the world that are water-stressed, and this is expected to increase with climate change, flushing away waste should not be one of our largest uses of freshwater. Also consider that the more water we send to the sewage...

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LifeStraw

Photo credit: LifeStraw

Turning on the tap and being able to access safe and drinkable water is a privilege that some of us may not realize we have. Despite the fact that having access to sufficient, safe, acceptable, accessible, and affordable water for personal and domestic use has been declared a human right by the United Nations, many people are living without this essential need being met. LifeStraw is a brand that works to make clean water accessible for all through their water filtration and purification devices. LifeStraw water filters are designed by Vestergaard Fransen, a Swiss company that manufactures public health tools in developing countries. The filters were originally developed in 1994 when LifeStraw partnered with the Carter Center to design a mesh filter that would remove Guinea worm larvae from drinking water. Guinea worm disease is a parasitic infection that is transmitted through water and causes the host excruciating pain. At the time of the partnership...

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Home Energy Audits

Have you ever been surprised by the amount of money you spend on your energy bills? Despite changing some of your habits, such as remembering to turn off the lights and unplug appliances, you may find that your energy bills only decrease slightly, if at all! Sometimes energy usage has less to do with your behaviour and more to do with the energy efficiency of your home. If this is the case, it is highly beneficial to conduct a home energy audit.

What are home energy audits?

A home energy audit, also known as a home energy assessment, is a way of determining how your home performs in terms of its energy efficiency. Home energy audits are typically conducted by an auditor from a company that specializes in energy audits. The auditor will assess various factors of your home in order to determine the level of energy efficiency as well as identify any opportunities for upgrades you may wish to make. Some of the things an auditor may look at include what kind of insulation you have in...

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Nap Rooms in the Workplace

Have you ever found yourself nodding off at your desk or falling asleep on the job? While this can be embarrassing if caught, some workplaces are actually encouraging their employees to take naps during the day! Napping at work might sound unproductive, but in reality, the negative effects you may be experiencing due to lack of sleep might be causing your performance to decrease.

Some symptoms of not getting enough sleep include lack of concentration, headaches, irritability, and reduced ability to remember and keep track of things. In the long term, sleep deprivation can cause serious health issues such as hypertension, heart attacks, and a weakened immune system. While making sleep a priority and getting a full 7- 8 hours is one way to reduce these negative effects, taking a nap during the day is another option!

Companies with nap rooms/pods

People’s lives are often fast-paced, resulting in seemingly not enough hours in the day. With so many errands to run and tasks to...

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