A Loss on the Toss

skipthesliplogo_final no backgrndYou may know of the hazards of BPA coated receipts but I’m guessing most of you DON’T know that they cannot be recycled. That’s right. NO tossing them in your recycle bin. If that’s not motivation to nix receipts altogether I don’t know what is. Especially when you get those two foot long ones popular at pharmacies and big box stores. That thermal coating that harms your skin also means it has to go in the garbage. Talk about waste. What can we do? There are some calls to action. Green America has a petition going to get the CVC giant to expand its digital receipt options and start using plain paper for printed ones – more on that below. And this month, CA became the first state to propose a bill that requires all businesses to provide receipts electronically as the default starting in 2022. They got rid of plastic straws so I’m optimistic. On the home front: skip the slip whenever you are given the option. The IRS accepts digital receipts so don’t fear the audits. If a paper receipt is the only option, don’t stockpile them!  That tends to be one of the biggest causes of paper clutter. ONLY keep receipts for big ticket items like furniture and appliances and keep those in a labeled manila envelope. If there is a user’s manual for your purchase, tape the receipt to the inside of the front cover. In addition, take a photo of the receipt and keep in a digital folder. This is especially a good idea for jewelry, laptops and artwork.

TAKE ACTION: Producing CVS’ notoriously long receipts takes over 35,000 trees and enough energy to power 84,800 refrigerators every year. The pharmacy’s receipt production emits 44 million pounds of CO2 and produces the same amount of solid waste generated by half a million people every day. The phenol coating makes them unfit for recycling, adding even more waste. CVS receipts have been tested and found to have BPS in their coating, which poses health risks for workers and customers. CLICK here to sign the petition to Skip The Slip. 

Sustainability Fair

sustainability+website.jpgJoin me Friday the 12th for a FREE and fun event. This 8th Annual Sustainability & Repair Fair brings a great group of folks together at the Garden Home Library in SW Portland. Lots of earth friendly products and information. You can even get your toaster fixed while you visit with vendors. Note: You can bring up to 2 items for repairs but they ask for a heads up. Click here for the Repair Fair registry. This event is so popular they now have to hold it in the adjacent gymnasium to accommodate everyone. And that’s a good thing! 5 to 7:30 pm. Corner of Oleson & Garden Home Rd. See you then!

Clear the Barriers

Your TaskThis is a special day for me and I celebrate it with you by sharing what is closest to my heart. Clearing the way to what blocks us from love is a journey within that each of us must discover – but life offers teachers along the way. Here’s a toast to all of those teachers in their varied shapes and sizes. And here’s to breaking through barriers. See you on the flip side! Click here to read about my two very special teachers and learn about an organization that is cutting through barriers in urban territory.

The Clear Gift of Humor

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SPLASH, Eugene Levy, 1984, (c)Buena Vista Pictures

What a week I’m having! If 2017 has been as full of angst for you as it has been for most of us, you’ll enjoy the suggestions in my December Enews. This issue features a nod to laughter, seasonal donation opportunity, help from a fellow blogger, favorite product tip and a first time offer for 30% OFF A Clear Place Wisdom Cards. Here’s to lightening the load with humor … and a bright holiday for all! View the good stuff now.

Solution for Styrofoam Scourge

Styrofoam (1)The waste industry has made major strides in coming up with ways to recycle our refuse. Everything that is except those ginormous blocks of Styrofoam. You know the ones – hermetically sealing everything from flat screen TV’s to furniture and glassware. Even if you break them down into tiny pieces, the choice for disposal is still an ugly one: landfill. UPS takes peanuts but not blocks. The only recycling center in Portland that took Styrofoam stopped accepting it in March. Now what? Enter Agilyx – an energy alternative company located in Tigard, OR. Implementing new technology in renewable energy and chemical recycling with a focus on environmental impact; the company broke ground this year on a facility that will convert polystyrene foam (foam cups, packaging materials) into styrene monomer. Reducing to the monomer form allows for global reuse in tons of ways. Fuel, helmets, housing … sky’s the limit. Best part for Portlanders? Consumers can drop off their Styrofoam for free. YAY! I spoke with the folks at Agilyx to confirm the free part and they shared that there are bins available 24/7 at their facility. Make sure your foam has the “6” on it and that it is clean and dry.  If you are a business or have more than a truck load, contact Agilyx  at 503-217-3160 to schedule a drop off time. Click here for map and more info. Not in the PDX area? Visit Home for Foam to find recycling near you. Until manufacturers are mandated to use earth friendly packaging, let’s do our best to dispose of stuff mindfully. Here’s to creative solutions and making Earth a clearer home for everyone.

Photo courtesy of NRWS, Paradise, CA.

How to Recycle Mattresses – Earth911.com

mattressMy recent mattress purchase seemed a good time to send out a reminder on recycling options. Most donation centers don’t accept mattresses anymore and the ones that do have gotten tighter with their standards. My fav recycling resource, Earth911, just posted this nice guide including how to disassemble your mattress in order to save it from the landfill. http://earth911.com/recycling-guide/how-to-recycle-mattresses/

Clear News Feb 2016

IMG_20160207_150114Learn about the queen of spices and how you can support efforts by Heifer Intl to raise its farmers out of poverty; peek inside a $20k home designed by Rural Studio; get an online tool that helps you determine the dollar value of your stuff; listen to my top picks for music guaranteed to put a wiggle in your clearing out tasks … and more. View Clear Ways to A Better World – February 2016. Enjoy!