The big chill: green fridges and freezers

My Hotpoint fridge-freezer

I’ve been fascinated by a feature on fridge and freezer efficiency in the latest issue of Ethical Consumer magazine. Apparently they’ve generally become much more efficient over the last 15 years, but this is pretty much negated by the fact that

A) we’re all now buying giant super-fridges which could chill enough fish for the feeding of the 5,000 and…..

B) we now keep our homes so overly warm inside that fridge-freezers have to work doubly hard… Continue reading

The Plight of The Honeybee

The alarming decline of honeybee populations has been in the news a lot recently. The Isle of Wight Festival chose to support a beeHoney feature project, Give Bees A Chance. as part of its Eco Action Partnership this year, and Jordan’s Cereals is running a Big Buzz campaign, giving away bee-friendly plants.

I first got interested in the global honeybee crisis when I was working on a feature for Australia and New Zealand magazine about honey in those two countries (click the thumbnail to… Continue reading

National Recycling Week

It’s National Recycling Week this week so I’m going to make a special effort. I do try to recycle wherever possible but some stuff does slip through the net.Recycling facilities outside my flat

These are the recycling facilities provided outside my block of flats – nice and handy.

As you can see, there’s a fair bit you can recycle here, but there’s also lots you can’t. Excluded are: yoghurt pots, cling film, margerine tubs, broken glass, food packaging, window glass, Pyrex, lightbulbs, Tetra Paks, and… Continue reading

Springhead Sustainable Living Centre

SpringheadI’ve been at a wedding in the countryside this weekend, at Springhead Sustainable Living Centre in Dorset. It’s a ‘rural centre for creative and sustainable living’ and its gardens are in the list of 1001 gardens you must see before you die, no less.

I’m not usually that into gardens (see other blog posts for attempts to cultivate a herb garden on my balcony) but this one was lovely. I surprised myself with how many plants and flowers I could name – I’ve… Continue reading

Otto The Juggling Octopus

As an aside to yesterday’s aquarium blog…I love this story I dug up about an octopus in a German aquarium which has been juggling with the hermit crabs in his tank. He also short-circuits the tank’s lights every night, and throws rocks at the glass.

I know that shows he’s bored and I don’t agree with him being in there, but if the hermit juggling footage was on YouTube,  I’d probably watch it… Continue reading

Big fish at Churaumi Aquarium

Something else of interest in Japan – Okinawa is home to Churaumi Aquarium, the second biggest aquarium in the worlIMG_2307d. I’m not keen on seeing animals in captivity but it was part of my press itinerary so I went along to check it out.

It really is gigantic – 77 different tanks, and the main one measures 8 by 20 metres, containing nearly two million gallons of water. The star attraction is four massive whale sharks, up to 8 metres long.

The sharks were beautiful (and seemed happy… Continue reading