Cleaning synthetic clothes dirties the environment with microfibers according to a study by UC Santa Barbara’s Bren School of Environmental Science & Management.
The microfibers shed during washing and drying then flow in the wastewater to the treatment plant. About 5% of the microfibers accumulate in the sludge which is ultimately used to make compost fertilizer. Smaller percentages are released with treated water back into waterways or landfilled.
Amazingly, that 5% has become,”5.6 million metric tonnes (Mt) of synthetic microfibers emitted from apparel washing between 1950 and 2016, with 2.9 Mt finding their way into waterbodies and a combined 2.5 Mt emitted onto terrestrial environments (1.9 Mt) and landfilled (0.6 Mt),” says the Science Daily article.
According to the researchers, simple cheap solutions can prevent microfiber release at the source. Microfiber filters in dryers, selecting a gentler wash methods, washing clothes less often, and foregoing synthetic fabrics among the list.
Trees serve as vital parts of our community’s green infrastructure, helping protect our homes from weather elements and extreme temperatures.
Help trees as we go into Fall by applying a 3-4 inches of mulch in a 3-6 foot ring around trees and shrubs. Keep the mulch from touching the tree’s trunk.
Check that trees adequate soil moisture, deep watering as necessary until the ground freezes. Soil should be moist to a depth of about 12-18 inches. Water the entire area underneath the tree’s drip-line if possible.
Don’t fertilize trees now and avoid pruming as trees and shrubs need to harden off before going into winter. If pruning must be done, wait until the plant is dormant.
Good Fall care will help trees flourish and continue to their vital work as part of our community’s green infrastructure.
Just a friendly reminder to wash re-usable supplies to keep them safe and healthy.
– Water bottles should be washed daily inside and out with hot water and dish soap. Remember to wash the jar lip and lid too. Dry thoroughly or air dry to prevent bacteria growth.
– Lunch containers should also be washed daily. Remember to wash the lunch box or sack weekly as they can become easily contaminated with food and liquid. And yes, most foam/softsided lunch sacks can be machine washed and line dried.
– Launder Reusable Grocery Sacks especially after toting meats or other packages which may leak or condensate. Simply machine wash and dry.
– Handbags, Backpacks and Totes get set on a variety of surfaces including floors. Launder regularly to wash out the grime.
Native plants root deeply and retain water more easily, making them less likely to burn. Its another reason to consider adding more native plant species to your home landsape.
In the 30-feet surrounding your home – the Lean,Clean, and Green Zone of defensible fire space – consider adding native plants and shrubs like coneflower, stonecrop, blue fescue, sumac, cotoneaster. lants located within this 30-foot area should be green and irrigated during fire season.