Movie: “This Changes Everything”

Posted on March 15, 2016 by - Community Events

Mark your Calendars! EDMC is showing the documentary “This Changes Everything”, based on the book by Naomi Klein, at the MCC conference center on Wednesday, March 23 at 7pm. Doors open at 6:30.

“What if confronting the climate crisis is the best chance we’ll ever get to build a better world?

Filmed over 211 shoot days in nine countries and five continents over four years, This Changes Everything is an epic attempt to re-imagine the vast challenge of climate change.

Directed by Avi Lewis, and inspired by Naomi Klein’s international non-fiction bestseller This Changes Everything, the film presents seven powerful portraits of communities on the front lines, from Montana’s Powder River Basin to the Alberta Tar Sands, from the coast of South India to Beijing and beyond.

Interwoven with these stories of struggle is Klein’s narration, connecting the carbon in the air with the economic system that put it there. Throughout the film, Klein builds to her most controversial and exciting idea: that we can seize the existential crisis of climate change to transform our failed economic system into something radically better.”

Read about the movie HERE.

A Green Tip for Election Time

Posted on March 10, 2016 by - Environmental Tips

As our population and industrial activities increase, more pressure is placed on the environment that sustains us. We must elect leaders who will ensure that development does not come at the expense of nature.  Translate your opinion into action and cast your vote for a candidate that has a healthy environment as a goal and priority in their campaign.

If a healthy environment is important to you, show it in your vote, talk about it, and make the environment a priority with your action.  Finally, support organizations that fight for policy that protect our natural world locally, regionally, nationally, worldly.

EDMC Offers Scholarships

Posted on March 9, 2016 by - Community Events, In the News

The Environmental Defenders of McHenry County is offering two Entering College scholarships of $1,000 each to two outstanding high school seniors planning to pursue careers directly related to environmental studies.

To be eligible, the applicants must reside in and attend high school in McHenry County, have a respectable GPA, two letters of recommendation, plan to attend an accredited college or university, and complete an application, which is available online here: http://mcdef.org/what-we-do/environmental-scholarship and at the EDMC office: 110 S Johnson St, Ste. 106, Woodstock.

The application and accompanying documents are due in the EDMC office no later than April 15, 2016.

Recycling Drive – March 12, 2016, McHenry

Posted on March 9, 2016 by - Community Events, In the News

On Saturday, March 12th, the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County (EDMC) will conduct a recycling collection for fluorescent tubes, Styrofoam™, electronics, and batteries from 9am until noon at the Metra Station parking lot, 4005 Main Street, in McHenry. They continue to collect certain items which are not usually accepted by curbside programs, and which would be harmful to the environment if put in a landfill.

The group will accept clean polystyrene foam such as Styrofoam, VHS and cassette tapes, CDs and DVDs, packing peanuts and reusable, un-popped bubble wrap and electronics (most anything that plugs in or runs on batteries).

Specific donation amounts are requested for household alkaline and rechargeable batteries (50¢ per pound), car batteries, fluorescent tubes (50¢ to $1 each), TVs and computer monitors (50¢ per pound up to $30 is asked for each TV or monitor). Donations offset the costs of transportation and proper recycling for those particular items.

EDMC will also accept any kind of cloth items, including clothing, linens and rags, clean and bagged as well as shoes, tied together by their laces and placed in the bag.

Aluminum cans are accepted as a donation.

Environmental Defenders’ recycling drives are held on the second Saturday of each month, at various locations in the county. April’s drive will be in Woodstock.

For information about the recycling schedule and types of materials accepted, visit the group’s website at mcdef.org/recycling or find it on Facebook at facebook.com/EnvironmentalDefenders.

Become a new member of EDMC at the recycling drive, at the Basic or higher level, and get two coupons to recycle a television or monitor for FREE!

An alternate site for electronics, Styrofoam, & batteries is Chicago Logistic in Elgin 847-429-1926.

To Idle or not to Idle

Posted on March 2, 2016 by - Environmental Tips

We’ve heard that in winter your car needs to warm up.  But in fact, idling in winter has no benefit to newer model cars. Auto experts say no more than 30 seconds of idling is needed before you start driving.  The engine will warm up faster being driven.

This is because most modern cars do not have carburetors, which needed to warm up to work well.  New cars use electronic fuel injection.  This makes the problem of warming up the car before driving irrelevant.

Even short periods of idling are significantly damaging. Indeed, it is better to turn your engine off and start it again.  If every car in the U.S. idles for 6 minutes per day, 3 billion gallons of fuel is wasted annually and costs drivers $10 billion.  That’s lots of vehicle exhaust containing pollutants that are harmful to your family’s health and the environment that are unnecessarily being released into the atmosphere also contributing to climate change.

Information from the Washington Post – Dec. 29, 2014

Renewable Energy

Posted on February 3, 2016 by - Environmental Tips

Speak your mind if you want to see renewables change the face of energy.  And do your research to choose and elect candidates that support clean energy at the local, state and national level.   Here’s why.  The will of the people concerned about the environment created a demand for solar energy, and what happened?  The solar sector beat out the oil and gas extraction industry in 2014 creating almost 50% more jobs in the U.S. than those industries did.  These are jobs open to different backgrounds including manufacturing, installation, sales and administration.  Be an active participant with information.  It matters.

Source: The Solar Foundation:  National Solar Jobs Census 2014

To Heat or Not To Heat

Posted on January 27, 2016 by - Environmental Tips

Maintain a constant indoor temperature and you’re heating not just your home but also the great outdoors. Heat is constantly lost, especially through doors and windows; the warmer it remains inside, the more heat escapes. It’s a law of thermodynamics, the same principle that makes tank water heaters less efficient than on-demand models.

This is why it takes less energy to reheat a house in a short time than to keep it warm all the time, and why energy-conservation organizations like the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy estimate a 2% savings on heating bills for each degree you lower the thermostat for eight hours at a time.

Washing Dishes – By Hand vs the Machine

Posted on January 14, 2016 by - Environmental Tips

Assuming that you use appropriate cycles and only run the machine when it’s full, the dishwasher wins. This is true even if you include the energy used in the production of the dishwasher in the first place.

To maximize the benefits, choose a model that will last and then look after it. Try to run it fully loaded, use the economy setting when possible and – for maximum green points – use the timer setting to run the dishwasher in the middle of the night. This way you’ll be using the grid at a time of low demand which means the least efficient and dirtiest power stations won’t be running, and as a result, each unit of power will have a slightly lower carbon footprint.

If you have to hand wash, please don’t let the water run.

From the Prairie to the Tundra – Take a vicarious journey!

Posted on January 13, 2016 by - Community Events, Member Events

Join fellow Defenders’ members on a cold February afternoon for a road trip from Illinois to the tundra! Defenders’ member, Neill Sachs, will be taking us vicariously on a journey that he and his wife, Margaret, took from Illinois to Alaska. Along the way they passed through several ecological zones – from prairies to mountains to boreal forests to tundra. Through wonderful photos Neill will take us along on this trip while discussing highlights of various environmental issues in each region.

The Membership Committee will be hosting this free event at the Soil and Water Conservation District Building on the corner of Dean St. and Hwy. 14 from 2 – 3:30 p.m. on February 21st. Cookies and warm drinks will be provided. RSVP’s at envirodefmc@gmail.com are not required, but would be welcomed to help us plan for refreshments. Hope you can join us for the trip!

 

ACTION ALERT!

Posted on January 7, 2016 by - Community Events

ACTION ALERT!

With the rising costs of electronic recycling and a limited labor force, the Environmental Defenders of McHenry County (EDMC) may no longer be able to accept electronics at the monthly recycling drives.

Do you want a convenient, electronic recycling drop-off site in your city or township? Call your local government official!

A proposal to establish electronic recycling drop-off sites has been hand-delivered to your local representative. It needs your support! An electronic recycling drop-off site is an unrestricted place for residents of a municipality or township to responsibly dispose of all electronics (including TV’s).

These collection sites can be set up any way a municipality or township sees fit with costs possibly as low as $1 per household per month.

We need your support! Contact your local municipality or township official and ask them to provide a solution for electronic recycling:

Municipal representativehttp://bit.ly/CityVillageContact or

Township representative: http://bit.ly/TownshipContact