EarthTalk

Hemera Collection

EarthTalk®

E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: Ever since the red dye #2 scare in the 1970s I’ve been wary of using food colorings or buying food that appears to contain them. Are there natural and healthy food colorings?

 -- Nancy McFarlane, Methuen, MA

Comstock

EarthTalk®

E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: How is it that global warming could negatively impact water supplies in the U.S.?

-- Penny Wilcox, Austin, TX

 

iStock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: What’s the story with Echinacea? Many herb teas contain it, and many people swear by it as a cold remedy. But I’ve also seen headlines saying that the herb has no medicinal value whatsoever. Can you set the record straight?  -- Arlene Hixson, Portland, ME

 

USDA

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: There are a number of companies out there now doing “energy audits” for the home, after which they try to sell you attic insulation and other products and services. Is this just a scam or would it be wise for me to look into this?                            -- Bill Richards., New York, NY

 

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: What do I need to know about the new U.S. energy efficiency standards for light bulbs that take effect in January 2012? Will certain bulbs be unavailable? And am I supposed to switch out my older inefficient bulbs with newer efficient ones?   -- Melissa McCarthy, Aptos, CA

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: I always hear about hair products and sprays that claim to be natural and organic based. What are some hair products that can be purchased that are legit and cause no harm to the environment? -- Penny Siegel, Milwaukee, WI

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: Recycling can be a somewhat time-consuming task; so can you please provide some benefits of taking the time to separate my trash?                             -- Joseph Jiminez, Houston, TX

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that asthma rates in the U.S. have doubled in the last three decades? What's behind this troubling trend and what can we do to reverse it?                 -- Patrick, via e-mail

 

iStock/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®

E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I know that large fish contain a lot of mercury, but where does it come from? And what are we doing to prevent this contamination? -- Alison Bronner, Atlanta, GA

iStock/Thinkstock

 

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Is it true that gas furnaces cost less to run and burn cleaner than their oil counterparts? If I make the switch, how long should I expect it to take for me to pay back my initial investment? And are there any greener options I should consider?  -- Veronica Austin, Boston, MA

 

Tammy Green, courtesy Flickr

 

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I've heard of the slow food movement, but what is “slow money” all about?
                                                                                                                    -- Phil Nimkoff, New York, NY

Digital Vision/Thinkstock

 

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I heard that the less meat one eats, the better it is for the environment. How so?

                                                                                                                          -- Jason K., Sarasota, FL

 

iStock Collection/Thinkstock

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Thorium is a naturally occurring element that is supposedly more available, more efficient and safer to use than uranium for generating nuclear energy. Is this true and, if so, why haven’t we made the switch?                                                                    -- Jane Westermann, Austin, TX

Niall Napier via Flickr

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

 

Dear EarthTalk: I’ve heard of green roofs, but what are “green walls?” --P. Spencer, Alcoa, TN

 

The Nasty Business of Shark Finning

Nov 6, 2011
Nicholas Wang/Flickr

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: What is shark finning and why have several U.S. states outlawed it?

                                                                                                            -- Betsy Englund, Tampa, FL

 

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: I drink diet soda but I’m told it’s bad for me and linked to health problems. Is this true and if so can you suggest any healthier alternatives?    -- Mitchell James, Ronkonkoma, NY

 

Mr. T. in DC/Flickr

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Why don’t more states mandate deposits on beverage bottles as incentives for people to return them? Most bottles I’ve seen only list a few states on them.          -- Alan Wu, Cary, NC

EarthTalk®
E - The Environmental Magazine

Dear EarthTalk: Most gold mining operations use cyanide to extract gold from surrounding rock. What are the environmental implications of this, and are there alternatives? --J. Pelton, via e-mail

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