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The Problem With Plastic

The problem is that when plastic is not disposed of properly, or disposed of at all, it will ensure harmful environmental consequences. A plastic bag can take anywhere from 100 to 500 years to disintegrate! Plastic is a huge environmental threat, killing animals and clogging up rivers worldwide. The average usage time of a plastic bag is around 25 minutes, which is funny because they can be used for multiple things (i.e. picking up your dog’s waste, trash bags.) When a plastic bag is not disposed of it can harm the life of animals and of the entire ecosystem, making them a serious environmental threat. There are ways to use plastic bags without harming nature in the process.

First of all, a plastic bag does NOT have to be recycled, and in fact, it is preferred in some places to not be thrown in the recycling bin because they screw up the machinery that produces recycled goods. If you are going to use a plastic bag at least have the decency to throw it away in the trash can if you are not going to reuse it! The worst thing that you can do with a plastic bag is to throw it to the wind. Please try and make an effort to dispose of your trash – and I’m not just talking plastic – in proper bins, if not for the environment’s sake, then for the sake of sightliness, because there is nothing worse than going to the beach and stumbling upon the remains of picnics past.

The largest ‘landfill’ in the world is in the middle of the Pacific Ocean. There is such thing as the ‘Great Pacific Garbage Patch‘, a place with high concentrations of chemical sludge and other broken down remnants of waste. The patch is reported to be ‘twice the size of the continental United States,” and if that doesn’t gross you out then I don’t know what could. This implies that our waste production is too high, and if that is true, what is to happen when this ‘Garbage Patch’ grows? We are already swimming in our own litter half of the time, will this make it a natural thing? Will we be forced to swim in a sea of broken down, toxic particles and various other kinds of waste?


There are efforts going on globally to reduce the incline of plastic waste, one of them being a program run by Trex, which is collecting plastic from local schools in order to create their faux wood panels, the winning school gets a handy prize. In Norfolk, Virginia Beach, and Chesapeake, among other districts, there are numerous schools competing in this competition to eliminate plastic waste. The Organic Comfort Zone is doing its part in helping the schools out by donating the plastic waste that we receive everyday to Willoughby Elementary, a local public school that is currently ranked first in this intercity contest. We are proud to be a part of instilling the benefits of  ‘Green’ living into the minds of the youngsters of our nation.

The Trex Plastic Film Recycling Program is helping students throughout Virginia learn of the harm that litter can bring and also of what they might be able to do about it all, which is, to begin with, throwing it away properly! People can get involved by donating to local stores, such as a grocery store, that takes in plastic bags specifically and can send them to places where they can be recycled. If you do not have the time for that, or can not find anywhere around you that is affiliated with recycling, than the easiest step you can take is to throw them out! Another alternative to plastic bags is tote shopping bags that can be reused over and over again, paper bags are not ideal, seeing that they kill trees and are more expensive.

Not only schools, but associations all over the country are giving way to a plastic bag disposal. Wisconsin’s Department of Natural Resources had partnered with multiple other business’ to form the Wrap Recycling Action Project, or W.R.A.P., which aims to increase the recycling of plastic film in “nearly every business and household.” Much of these bags with the Resin Identification code of #2 and #4 can be disposed of in retail store bins.

The best motto is Reduce, Reuse, Recycle, because it truly is the best thing that you can do with everything that you find in your possession. You can reduce the use of plastic film by stuffing more things into one bag, because the capacity of the bag is usually more than one might expect. Or, instead of doubling your bags for one liter of soda, ask the cashier to only use one bag. Reuse your bags for as long as you can and then when everything is said and done, find a place to recycle them, or throw them away. Save yourself, save some money, save the planet, and enjoy every day as it comes. Enjoy the world without the clutter of plastic bags and filthy waste lying about and do your part in protecting the environment that you live in so that the grass can grow greener everyday and everywhere.



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Feed People, Not Landfills

An estimated 50 million Americans do not have access to enough food. If 50 million Americans alone do not have access to enough food, imagine how large the number of people around the world who do not have access to enough food is. That would be nearly one billion people! That means that one in every six people is not getting enough food to eat. However, landfills receive plenty of nutritious and delicious foods, and some foods that are not so nutritious or delicious. With all of this food going to landfills, it makes you wonder why it is so hard to feed everybody in the world.

Not only is the lack of food causing a social epidemic worldwide, but it is also an environmental hazard. When food is sent to landfills it releases a gas called methane, which has 21 times the potential to speed up global warming than Carbon Dioxide. This gas is produced when the food rots and is not disposed of properly. It is almost funny to think about how easy it could be to simply use the food as compost and help feed the soil nutrients as opposed to wasting it and producing harmful toxins.

Compost is organic matter that has been recycled in order to be used as a soil amendment. It is easy to make and it is free. It can be made from fruit and vegetable scraps (e.g. apple cores, orange peels, banana peels, etc.) and from a variety of other materials such as egg shells,  coffee grounds, tea leaves, and newspaper. Remember that this will be good for your home garden or backyard, including the stimulation of flower growth and other earthly buds.


When you waste food you waste the time and effort that was needed to grow the product. This is a waste of not only food, but your money and the money of the people that produced it. Not only is it a waste of food and money, but it is also a waste of the animal or plant that died in order for you to eat it! When you look at all of the bad aspects of food waste, it makes you wonder why anyone would do it in the first place. Worldwide, about 1/3 of food produced is put to waste, which is over 1.3 billion tons.

Many programs all over the world are committed to feeding the hungry, including the Egyptian, Bulgarian, and Argentinian food banks. Places and people all over the world are beginning to realize what a hazard food waste can be. Joining organizations such as a local food bank can help save people worldwide, and not just people, but it can also help save the environment in the process. Schools also have information needed in order to donate food, if you have a student attending school, or are one yourself, most likely you will hear of a food drive. Don’t miss your chance to donate and get educated on the matter.



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Green is Good

I guess I’ve been on a health kick lately, but here is another food post. Eating organically will help boost the body’s immune system and other natural defenses, as well as keeping your complexion clear and your body trim. There are many ways to eat organically in this day and age and you should always be mindful of where your food is from, how fresh it is, whether or not pesticides and steroids were used in its production, and its nutrition level. Like many food posts I have compiled another list of things that can be bought with peace of mind whether or not they are from the farmers market or not:

-Avocado                                                 -Cauliflower                                             -Watermelon

-Asparagus                                              -Kiwi                                                           -Garlic

-Blackberries                                          -Onions                                                     -Tomatoes

– Broccoli                                                 -Mangoes

-Cabbage                                                  -Pineapples


Now we can move on to a list of foods that are OK to buy non-organic, but still would be made better if bought fresh daily 🙂


-Green Onions




OK. Now it is time to reveal the food that is safest to buy ORGANIC

-Almonds                                                 -Papaya                                                  -Celery                                                  -Cherries

-Apples                                                     -Carrots                                                  -Cucumbers                                        -Kale

-Bell Peppers                                          -Blueberries                                          -Potatoes                                             -Strawberries

-Peaches                                                   -Spinach                                                 -Raspberries

-Lettuce                                                    -Green Beans                                        -Zucchini

-Pears                                                        -Plums                                                     -Corn


All our lives we will face tough choices about what we should be eating and why. We will be consumed with temptation when looking through the windows at Dairy Queen or maybe the bakery at your local supermarket. We can not let ourselves down, though. There are always healthier and safer options for everyone to enjoy no matter what your preference is. Just the other night I had a fresh, delicious, savory, spicy catfish sandwich from our local farmers market. The sandwich was rich with spices and subtle flavors and I enjoyed every bite of it. The dinner was healthy and it was also affordable.

twilight apple

Why should we stop where we eat though? We want to practice healthy choices in every aspect of our life, don’t we? We want to live to the fullest of our potential and we can only do that when we are thinking straight and clearly, but how can one think clearly after stuffing there body with greasy McDonald’s and wondering how long it might take for our body to digest the unnatural preservatives in our food. It is simple chemistry, the more organic the product, the easier it will be for your body to accept and also to make use of.

This is same for all the world around us, the more natural that the product is the safer it will be for the overall environment. So many landfills are just piles upon piles and stacks on stacks of waste that is not biodegradable. This is not safe for the ecosystem as these unnatural products release toxins and become and eyesore. Why not choose to be organic? In the end it won’t hurt a soul, but it can make millions of lives safer and thousands of places cleaner.

I remember taking a trip down to Puerto Rico over the summer and being struck in awe by the natural beauty that the country provided and then feeling like I had been slapped in the face when the juxtaposition of the filthy piles of waste that lined the shore appeared in my line of vision, and it was not only in one place, it was all over the place. If we all took simple, easy steps toward creating a healthier world we might not face the environmental issues that we are struggling with today.

Why not do your best to take part in cleaning up this world whenever possible. By buying Eco-friendly, organic products you are saving a whole crop from being poisoned by threatening chemicals. Even more, when you move from simply buying green foods to other green products than your role just became a whole lot more important. When buying organic bedding you are saving a landfill from having another filthy mattress being placed in it ten years down the road because natural bedding is just that good. Give it a try with your delicious new grocery list and then try to incorporate ‘green’ into other aspects of your life.






eric-SAT-picEric is currently a student and part-time team member for Norfolk, VA based business Organic Comfort Zone, manufacturers of CozyPure organic bedding and mattress. For more information visit or or call 757.480.8500.