Saturday, January 29, 2011

10 Ways to Cut Your Paper Waste

Today, 90% of paper pulp is made of wood. Paper production accounts for about 35% of felled trees,and represents 1.2% of the world's total economic output.Recycling one ton of newsprint saves about 1 ton of wood while recycling 1 ton of printing or copier paper saves slightly more than 2 tons of wood.

Well, here are my recommendations to cut your paper waste:

1. Migrate to electronic bills. Ask your bank, water and electricity supplier, etc., to send you an electronic copy of your balance/invoice. Yes, I know it will take you an effort and maybe some of your time, but it is worth it! I keep receiving tones of neat letters with my bills, which I never read because I check them online, much earlier. I usually send them straight to the bin without even bothering to open them. So what is the point of these neat letters?
2. Fight the leaflets. Just imagine this - millions, maybe even billions of leaflets are printed every day and distributed to houses, offices, malls, etc. According to the marketing people, about 2-3 % of the leaflets are actually read and some action is taken. This means that 97% of these millions leaflets (tons of paper) are.. well, wasted. Furthermore, leaflets are unwilling by the receiver, pushy and annoying. Obviously, we cannot stop this overnight. But I suggest the following: never pick up a leaflet from a street-giver and put a note on your mailbox at home and in the office with the following sign: SAVE A TREE. NO LEAFLETS IN THIS MAILBOX, PLEASE!
3. Say NO to newspapers. Ok, I wonder every single day: what is the point in reading the news with a day delay from a difficult to fold paper! And what is the point in buying a glossy magazine with articles taken from the internet, where you can actually read them for free? Some people say that it is a habit. Well, I hope twenty years from now no one will have this expensive habit, which costs us tones of paper every day!
4. Say NO to paper wish cards. Yes, it is great to let your loved ones know that you love them, but make it in an environmental and modern way - send them an electronic card, an electronic gift voucher, an MMS or just a smile. It will show much more awareness , believe me!
5. Add the green sign in your e-mail signature. As I mentioned, some people add it because it is trendy. But, hey, if it is a trend, it means it actually DOES some good by spreading the news! So go ahead and add it in your e-mail signature. You can read more about the campaign here and copy the .JPG file below to your e-mail now!

6. Use recycled paper in your office.
It is a little bit more expensive, it is not very smooth, it is more difficult to find, but hell - it is worth it. And when you start using it, you do feel like doing good. Also, remember to always use both sides of the sheet and collect the useless paper for recycling.
7. Do the recycling. Just remember that by sending any paper or package to the bin, you are cutting a tree. Make an effort and make a difference. Collect your paper waste and dispose it to the nearest blue bin or drop-off center.
8. When possible, fill in your forms electronically. Nowadays we are forced to fill in all kinds of forms and most of them are online. Although, there are still many paper forms in the offices for older people who do not use the internet, you can at least save time and some paper by filling the form online.
9. Avoid buying products in a cartoon package. Yes, I know it is difficult. Nowadays, only the coke is not yet in a cartoon box. Your favourite milk, your favourite juice, even the wine may come in a cartoon! But in order to stop this, all consumers should prefer glass package, or no package at all.
10. Plant a tree! Old people say that a human life is worth only if you have built a home, brought up a child and planted a tree. It's your turn!

Thursday, January 27, 2011

2011 - The Year of the Forests

The UN has announced 2011 to be the year of the forest. As you will see from the WWF video below, every year we loose about 3000 animal spices, because of the forest cutting. Every second, a football field of forest is cut. This has a tremendous effect not only on wildlife, but especially for the green gas effect and the global warming. As we all know, trees are keeping the nature in balance by absorbing the CO2.

The human greediness for timber, pulp and paper is non-stoppable. So, if we all join forces and reduce our paper consumption, as well as not buy wooden furniture, each of us can contribute for limiting the forest theft of our planet.
Furthermore, there is a saying in my country that if you have not planted at least one tree in your lifetime, your life was not worth it. So let's all do it at least during the year of the forest - 2011!

Wednesday, January 26, 2011


I should start to rotate good and bad green news. Now, I will finally share with you a good initiative, which I find amazing - the only eco friendly outdoor advertising company. Here is some info about it:

GreenGraffiti® is an environmentally friendly form of outdoor advertising with a clear message; clean is green. GreenGraffiti® is completely carbon neutral, is one of the first companies in the world to compensate for our water footprint and contributes in a unique way to a healthier environment. That is why we can say with a clear conscience: the more GreenGraffiti® the better.

How does it work?

With the help of a template and a high pressure water sprayer an advertising message is cleaned out of the dirt.The result is a high impact message and a cleaner street.

For more info,hit their website.

Tuesday, January 25, 2011

Bureaucracy vs Trees in the European Union

The projects funded by the European Union are a major topic in countries like Bulgaria, Romania, Lithuania, Czech Republic, Poland and other newly accepted members in the European Union. All of them rely heavily on the funding for their development, and all of them compete with each other how much money they have acquired.

I have recently been involved in the development of several projects in Bulgaria for a medium sized enterprise. Fairly small projects. I will lead you into some details in the preparation process: the project itself was 45 pages long. There were about 25 additional pages in different kinds of declarations and about 70 pages in required documents with financials and translated company offers from suppliers. Total of more than 140 pages a single small project! And this project had to be accompanied by two identical copies. Total of 420 sheets of paper! The three fat folders were squeezed into a cartoon box, which weighted about 25 kilos! 25 kilos of white A4 paper and one cartoon – this is more than a tree! To my horror, when I delivered the project, in the waiting room there were thousands of even bigger projects than mine. Piles of wasted paper! Bigger projects (from towns and for the roads) weight from 250 kilos to 500 kilos! Just imagine the impact bureaucracy does on nature!

My project was rejected in the first stage for missing one stamp. So were 62% of the projects and more than 20% more will be rejected on the second stage. What will be done with the thousands of paper and energy spent in this nonsense? What will be done with all these papers which are rejected for stupid reasons?

I cannot believe that in the 21st century, thousands of kilograms of paper is sent to the rubbish, instead of just investing in a software product that will accept projects electronically! I intend to write a letter of complaint to the European Commission, and whoever is in, please give me a shout!

The Garbage Patch

What you will see in the video below is striking! Over 7 million tons of plastic spanning an area twice the size of Texas. The so called "Garbage patch" in the North Pacific tropical gyre is an entire island of plastic garbage. In the waters in the area there are six time more plastic than plankton. Birds and fish are often deluded that plastic is food and poison themselves eating it. It is even more striking to think that all the plastic ever produced worldwide stays in the planet forever, because it takes thousands of years to decade and the recycling of plastic is negligible. Michael Moore, an ex-sailor, is researching this topic and there are many movies about it on YouTube. Alternatively, you can check his website, for more information.

As a conclusion, I just want to shout: REDUCE YOUR PLASTIC WASTE! Look what we've done to our planet!

Sunday, January 23, 2011


Among all the environmental videos on the net, MEAT THE TRUTH stands out, because it is about a topic, which has been neglected for too long - the life-stock farming and their impact on the global warming. The striking figures are that this kind of farming is responsible for 18% of the green-house gases, while the transportation is the mere 13%! How is this possible? Find out in this amazing video and I hope that more people join the vegetarians club!

Saturday, January 22, 2011

The Perfect Gift

Although Christmas holidays are over, there are new ones coming and finding the best gift for the loved ones is always tricky - is he/she going to like it?, is he/she going to just throw it in the bin?, etcetera, etcetera. In order to save you this trouble I will recommend you the perfect, original, unique and most of all - REALLY WORTH IT present for your loved ones - a gift voucher for donation for a cause supported by the World Wildlife Fund. This is a present with true value that will never be thrown in the bin. It is a present for the future!

On this website you can choose from a range of donations - from helping a panda finds its home, to sending turtles to rehab and giving a polar bear a tattoo. Your present recipient will receive a gift voucher on their e-mail with an explanation what the cause is about and a picture with a cute, happy animal-friend smiling to say "Thank You".

Make a difference by choosing the best present!

Friday, January 21, 2011

Organic yellow cheese

Today I picked up from the supermarket organic yellow cheese (on the pic). I never tried it before, because the price is twice as the normal cheese and I've heard rumours that it is tasteless. Well, here I have to confirm that fact. The cheese is just like rubber! No taste at all! Looking at the label, I see nothing different from a normal cheese, except that it has been made from bio cow milk. What does this mean is not explained further.

Observing these disadvantages of the organic yellow cheese - tasteless and expensive, I cannot help but wonder how these people are fighting the competition with the other cheeses and who on earth buys their product? Do they only count on this tiny percent of people, who try to eat only organic and who can really understand that IT IS organic (well, there are some signs and numbers on the packing which might mean something!?). Do organic products have any future?

Wednesday, January 19, 2011

Eco batteries?

Last year in Bulgaria emerged a new law for batteries' storage, which obliged all shops who sell them to have the so called "eco bins" where the customer is supposed to dispose their old batteries (picture on left). Well, I happen to know a shop where batteries are sold. The sales people there carefully collect all batteries by customers and politely explain to them what this bin is for. Everybody seems to welcome the idea and customers even bring old batteries from home and put them in the bin. BUT! There is always a BUT in Bulgaria. The eco bin is supplied by the batteries supplier, who sometimes refuses to take the full box, because for them their disposal is very expensive and they are cutting costs by simply not collecting the batteries! I am wondering who is controlling the application of the new law, and is it actually just on paper?

Monday, January 17, 2011

European Citizens' Initiative Handbook

Hi all,

Tonight, I would like to share with you a very important link, where you can download the latest version of the "European Citizens' Initiative Handbook" by the Green European Foundation in English. There is also a translation in several other languages, Bulgarian included.

The handbook is a step-by-step guide of how to make a difference as a citizen of the European Union, by using the new European Citizens' Initiative (Article.11.4 of the Lisbon Treaty of the EU), which gives the opportunity to interfere with agenda settings of the EU legislation to 1 million people in different Member States.

For all those young and motivated people, the time has come!

Sunday, January 16, 2011

The Earth Song - RIP Michael!

This song was released in 1996 when in most countries environmental protection was still unknown as a term. Somehow, Jacko always succeeded in catching the trend and has written the most real song related to environmental protection ever!

"What about sunrise
What about rain
What about all the things
That you said we were to gain...
What about killing fields
Is there a time
What about all the things
That you said was yours and mine...
Did you ever stop to notice
All the blood we've shed before
Did you ever stop to notice
The crying Earth the weeping shores?"

"Let the nature remains in Bulgaria"

My first post will be about a community in my native country called "Let the nature remains in Bulgaria". These people are doing extraordinary things in order to save the beautiful and extremely rich nature in Bulgaria from ruthless money-makers and bribed politicians.

They make petitions, protests in front of the parliament, writing lett
ers to the ruling people and what not, with only one thought in mind - to save as much nature as possible. The main problems of Bulgarian green people are the illegal forest cuttings, building hotels and ski runs on protected areas and killing biodiversity.

Believe it or not, they have succeeded on several projects so far: almost closing the "Natura 2000" ecological network, which will protect 34% of the country's area, stopping of the building of the illegal ski run Panichishte, and the salvation of national parl Strandzha. If you want to become a memeber or sign their petitions, check out their website:

Hello World!

This is my place on the www, where I will share my views, emotions and opinions related to everything green - ecology, environmental protection, green living, etc. I would like to contribute, if little, to the world cause of saving our planet's resources, beauty, natural landscapes and healthy food. I am not an activist, rather a believer, that if all of us make a little change in our lifestyle and a little effort, we can still save our planet!

I hope you will enjoy my little, green world here!