Be an ECO-LEADER!
Perform some quick E-activism, test your knowledge with the Eco-quiz, and get some tips on how to reduce your impact on the environment!
- Find out where to recycle almost anything, almost anywhere
- Stop Junk Mail
- Stop receiving phone books
- Measure your carbon footprint
Take the Eco-quiz!
>>> Most grocery stores provide a recycling bin for plastic shopping bags. Which of these items CAN NOT go in that bin?
A. Grocery, produce, food storage bags
B. Plastic retail shopping bags
C. Clear sacks that hold newspapers and your dry cleaning
D. Retail wrap (that stuff that protects your paper towels, sandwich bread, and many products)
E. Plastic shipping envelopes
F. Your rubber ducky
Answer: F. Leave the ducky in the tub, and recycle everything else! And join millions of Americans who reuse plastic bags at home and in the store. P.S.: the safest rubber duckies are made of phthalate- and PVC- free natural latex.
>>> Four of these statements are true, but one is false. CAN you sort out the truth?
A. Aluminum is recycled into cans, foil and cars.
B. A used aluminum can, can be recycled, remade, refilled and returned to your grocer’s shelf in as few as 60 days.
C. Wearing a dress made from aluminum cans will bring you fame, fortune and true love.
D. If every American recycled one more can per week, the U.S. recycling rate would go from 57% to 75%
E. Recycling one can saves enough energy to run your iPod for 5.5 hours
Answer: C. Wearing aluminum cans probably won’t improve your love life, but recycling aluminum saves 95 percent of the energy needed to make aluminum from raw materials, and up to 95 percent of related emissions, such as greenhouse gases, are avoided!
>>> What’s the best way to combine cardiovascular exercise with your commute?
A. Ride your stationary bike at home, then drive to work.
B. Drive to the gym, ride the stationary bike, then drive the rest of the way to work.
C. Hire a rickshaw driver to bring you to work.
D. Bike to work.
Answer: A. Ride your bike and leave the car at home. The latest commuter bikes feature storage racks, comfortable seats, chain guards, lights and puncture-resistant tires. Not to mention…they get amazing mileage and ramp up your fitness levels.
Visit this Environmental Protection Agency website to estimate your greenhouse gas emissions (including emissions from driving) using a personal emissions calculator.
>>> Which of these statements is FALSE? Airlines reduce their environmental impact by:
A. Recycling aluminum, plastic and paper used on board the planes.
B. Contracting with super-heroes to fly with planes on their backs.
C. Installing a little winglet on the end of the airplane wing.
D. Offering “carbon off-sets” to customers for the miles they fly.
E. Researching use of alternative fuels that are less harmful to the environment.
Answer: B. The super-heroes are too busy fighting bad guys! However, many airlines take all the other measures listed above, plus they are instituting more efficient flight planning; dispatch procedures; flight operations procedures; and air traffic control initiatives that can save 70 million gallons of fuel per year.
>>> How can you be sure that all your beverage containers are recycled?
A. Make sure to have recycling bins at home, work, school, church, and at other community gathering locations.
B. Keep a bag in your car for recycling-on-the-go, and empty it in your bin at home or at a recycling center.
C. Have the recycling symbol tattooed on your forehead to remind everyone you see to recycle!
Answer: A and B. Most beverages come in recyclable materials: glass, plastic or aluminum, and most of these containers are made from recycled materials. Also, try to purchase materials that contain post-consumer recycled content. Find out where to recycle in your community at: www.earth911.com.
>>> Three of these statements are true, but one is false. Can you find the junk message in this group of facts about junk mail?
A. Each year, 100 million trees are sacrificed to generate the junk mail that arrives in American mailboxes
B. People throw out almost half of what they receive–without even opening it.
C. Americans spend eight months of their lives sorting, reviewing, and tossing the junk mail that fills their mailboxes daily.
D. There’s no way to avoid getting junk mail.
Answer: Although the other statements are sadly true, D is false! You CAN cut out most of the junk mail you receive! Visit www.ecocycle.org/junkmail to learn how.
>>> Which are the three most common types of litter in our oceans?
A. Plastic bottles
B. Plastic bags
D. Pirates’ peg legs
Answer: A. B. and C…and they are all recyclable! Sea birds, sea turtles, fish, and marine mammals often ingest trash that they mistake for food. Sea turtles have been found to swallow plastic bags because the bags look like jellyfish (one of their favorite foods). This is often fatal. Who could mistake the beautiful sea for a trash bin?
Sources: Ocean Conservancy
>>> We all know that paper comes from trees…but can it be made from anything else?
A. Yes, it can be made from hemp.
B. Panda and elephant poop. Quick, call your local zoo!
C. Sheepskin, just like in the old days.
D. All of the above
Answer: D. All of the above. Although all of these materials can produce paper, hemp is the most humane (and least stinky) option. It requires less land acreage to grow than timber, has fewer chemical byproducts, and can be recycled more frequently than tree fiber.
Source: National Geographic
>>> You have finally replaced your old tape player with a new ipod. Can you recycle the old stereo? It is so obsolete.
A. No, just toss it into the trash. Nobody wants to rock that thing, and you certainly don’t need it cluttering up your space.
B. Yes. There are lots of convenient drop-off locations for your old electronics. Some even pay you for it!
Answer: B. People across the U.S. are recycling their old stereos, TVs, cell phones, and other broken or obsolete electronic equipment. Visit Earth911.com to find out how and where to recycle your old electronics. Or ask your favorite manufactures to make more durable and updateable products.
>>> How can you go green at work?
A. Stock the workplace with recycled, non-toxic office supplies.
B. Organize a carpool or take public transportation.
C. Adhere to green building standards when building new structures.
D. Recycle glass, plastic, aluminum, and paper within the workplace.
E. Pack your own waste-free lunch, or ask restaurants to pack your takeout lunch in your own reusable containers.
F. Paint everything in the office lime green!
Answer: All of the above, except F. Whether you work for a mom-and-pop shop or a huge corporation, Americans are greening their workplaces by taking the meaningful steps above.
“Do not wait for extraordinary circumstances to do good action; try to use ordinary situations.” — Jean Paul Richter
Source: Environmental Protection Agency
>>> Can you opt-out of receiving unwanted phone directories?
A. No way! They’re free and have so many uses. Hoard them in your garage–you never know when you’ll need one for a karate chopping prop or toddler booster.
B. YES! Nowadays, you can use the internet to look up numbers. Phone books used to come in handy, but at this point, they kill trees and fill landfills.
Answer: B. To dodge phone directory delivery, visit: www.yellowpagesoptout.com. To find out where to recycle them, visit www.Earth911.com.
>>> Which three statements are true? Buildings in the United States:
A. Consume 72% of electricity
B. Consume lots of Girl Scout cookies
C. Consume 14% of water
D. Create 39% of all CO2 emissions
Answer: Unfortunately, A., C. and D. But you can join others in changing this by “greening” your buildings at home and work. Hammer home the power of green building by choosing Energy Star appliances, low flush toilets, and compact fluorescent light bulbs; recycling your waste; and making green choices when planning new construction. Today’s green-built buildings actually give power back to the grid, instead of draining it.
Source: US Green Building Council
>>> What’s the most powerful way to help the earth, in addition to recycling, reusing, voting, or ride-sharing?
A. Support local organic farmers by purchasing your produce at the farmer’s market.
B. Compost your kitchen scraps (or save them for someone you know who does compost)
C. Vote with your dollars–buy products from companies with meaningful green practices.
D. Tell Kermit the Frog: “It IS easy being green!”
E. Teach our children how to live “green”.
Answer: A., B., C. and E. All of the above actions (and thousands more) are powerful and important habits to teach our children. Help the young people in your life appreciate and care for this precious planet that sustains us.
Source: Kids can learn more about how to be an eco-leader at this Environmental Protection Agency site.
>>> Which of these statements is FALSE:
A. Glass containers go from recycling bin to store shelf in as little
as 30 days.
B. Glass bottles and jars are 100% recyclable and can be recycled
endlessly without any loss in purity or quality.
C. Over a ton of natural resources are conserved for every ton of
D. Cinderella recycled her glass slippers; they’re now living on as royal chandeliers.
Answer: D. Cinderella is a fairy tale, but glass can be endlessly recycled which is an eco-dream come true. Visit www.earth911.com to find out where you can recycle glass and many other items.
Source: Glass Packaging Institute
>>> Cars, trucks and airplanes create what percentage of the greenhouse gas causing carbon dioxide produced in the United States?
Answer: C. 30%. Our personal transportation choices impact the environment powerfully. Drive the point home with your choices and join the millions of people who walk, bike, carpool, jump on the bus or train, and drive fuel-efficient vehicles.
>>> Plastic can be recycled into…
A. Carpet, clothing, and containers
B. Pipe, picnic tables and porch swings
C. Diaper bags, playground equipment, and yarn
D. Colorful vintage swimwear
E. All of the above
Answer: E. All of the above, however this bathing suit might not be good for your next triathlon. Recycling plastic is more energy-efficient than producing it from scratch and it generates less greenhouse gases and solid waste. Also, join millions of people who reduce their use of plastic by reusing containers and bags.
Source: Environmental Protection Agency
>>> True or False: Recycling is patriotic.
True: When you join other Americans in recycling, you defend your country against reliance on other nations for resources. Keep America independent from other countries’ oil reserves. The U.S. recycling rate of 33% saves the equivalent of more than five billion gallons of gasoline, reducing dependence on foreign oil by 114 million barrels. Let’s double that to wean the USA from energy codependence.
“I think the environment should be put in the category of our national security. Defense of our resources is just as important as defense abroad. Otherwise what is there to defend?” ~Robert Redford
>>> True or False: There are lots of ways to help the environment, but voting isn’t one of them.
Answer: False. When you vote for candidates who support environmental laws and regulations, you exercise your personal power to engage in democracy and be a part of saving the earth for yourself and future generations.
“The ultimate test of man’s conscience may be his willingness to sacrifice something today for future generations whose words of thanks will not be heard.”
— Gaylord Nelson
Thank you for taking this quiz!! Now use your new knowledge, engage your creativity and become an ECO-LEADER!
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