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    ... NEWS ABOUT THE PROTECTION OF ANIMALS AND THE ENVIRONMENT ... Is Your Fridge Running (Efficiently)? February 2007 Read this issue of Greentips online
    Message 1 of 1 , Mar 3, 2007
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      Is Your Fridge Running (Efficiently)?
      February 2007
      Read this issue of Greentips online

      Appliances account for about 20 percent of a household's annual electricity use. Since most of our nation's electricity is generated from fossil fuels (such as coal and natural gas), which contribute to global warming and air and water pollution, replacing older appliances with more efficient Energy Star-rated models can go a long way toward reducing your environmental impact. However, these appliances are only as efficient as the person using them.

      No matter what model appliance you own, there are easy ways to make sure it is using as little electricity as possible:


      a.. Keep your refrigerator away from heat sources (including dishwashers, ovens, heating vents, and direct sunlight), which cause it to work harder to keep its contents cold.

      b.. Leave a few inches of space behind the refrigerator to ensure proper air circulation around the condenser coils, and vacuum the coils at least once a year.

      c.. Open the door as little as possible to minimize the amount of cold air that escapes.

      d.. Don't keep your refrigerator or freezer too cold, which can waste energy. Recommended temperatures are between 37 and 40 degrees Fahrenheit (ºF) for refrigerators and 5 ºF for freezers.

      e.. Keep the refrigerator and freezer full to better retain the cold. If your refrigerator is fairly empty, store water-filled containers inside.


      a.. Run the dishwasher only when it is full (but don't overfill it).

      b.. Choose the air-dry option instead of heat-dry. If your machine does not have an air-dry option, simply open the door when the final rinse cycle is complete.

      c.. Check to see if your dishwasher has an internal heater (which heats incoming water to 140 ºF or higher). If it does, you can lower your home's water heater temperature to 120 ºF.
      Washing Machine

      a.. Use cold water for washing and rinsing clothes to reduce electricity use by up to 90 percent. If you must use hot water for a wash, use cold water for the rinse cycle.

      b.. Wash full loads of laundry as much as possible. Wash smaller loads only if you can select a lower water level.

      c.. Use your washer's high-speed spin cycle to extract the most moisture possible from your clothing, which will reduce drying time.

      a.. Dry heavier and lighter items separately to reduce overall drying time.

      b.. Whenever possible, dry multiple loads of laundry in a row-each subsequent load will use the residual heat from the previous load. Use the cool-down cycle for the last load to allow the clothes to finish drying with residual heat.
      Related Links

      Energy Star

      U.S. Department of Energy

      California Energy Commission-Consumer Energy Center

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      This is your single best chance to make a life-saving difference to thousands of polar bears across the Arctic who are already suffering the effects of global warming.

      For a brief period of time, the Bush Administration is accepting public comments on its proposal to protect polar bears under the Endangered Species Act.

      Please vote for polar bear protection right now by submitting your Official Citizen Comment at NRDC's new PolarBearSOS website.

      With your help, we are going to generate a blizzard of Citizen Comments until the Bush Administration agrees to protect the polar bear and address the mortal threat posed by global warming.

      As you well know, polar bears are completely dependent on Arctic sea ice to survive, but 80 percent of that ice could be gone in 20 years and all of it by 2040.

      Polar bears are already feeling the effects: birth rates are falling, fewer cubs are surviving, and more bears are drowning.

      Following our legal action last year, the Bush Administration took a big step forward by proposing to list the polar bear as "threatened" under the Endangered Species Act.

      But its proposal fails to designate "critical habitat" for the bear, even though melting habitat from global warming is the whole problem!

      And the proposal refuses to identify the cause of global warming, as if the polar bear could be saved without reducing our nation's global warming pollution!

      Your Official Comment -- when added to hundreds of thousands of others -- will put the Bush Administration on notice that we expect it to move ahead with polar bear protection that designates critical habitat and addresses global warming.

      Click here to submit your Official Citizen Comment to the U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service right now!


      Frances Beinecke
      Natural Resources Defense Council

      P.S. After submitting your Citizen Comment, please spend a few minutes touring our new PolarBearSOS.org website. It's got a lot of great information about how to save polar bears and stop global warming.


      If you can't see the images in this email, please click here to view it as a Web page.
      International Fund for Animal Welfare February 13, 2007

      Top three seal hunt myths

      As the 2007 seal hunt grows closer, it's important to separate the facts from the fiction.

      Here are the top three myths told by Canada's Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO) about the upcoming commercial seal hunt:

      Myth #1: The seal hunt is humane.

      All available evidence, including veterinary reports and independent observations, indicates that each year tens of thousands of seal pups die in an unacceptably cruel manner inconsistent with contemporary animal welfare standards.

      Year after year, observers report abuses such as the hooking and dragging of live seals across the ice, seals clubbed or shot and left to suffer on the ice, and seals skinned while conscious. And while all recent veterinary reports recommend reducing the suffering of seals, their recommendations have not been fully implemented. There is no doubt that Canada's commercial seal hunt continues to result in considerable and unacceptable suffering.

      Myth #2: The seal hunt is closely monitored and well managed.

      The seal hunt involves thousands of sealers competing for a limited number of seals during a relatively short period of time. Sealers are concerned with killing as many animals as quickly as possible instead of checking to see if a seal is dead before moving on to club the next one.

      Year after year, IFAW hunt observers encounter seals that have been clubbed and left to suffer on the ice, bleeding profusely, crying, breathing and attempting to crawl. These are not "reflexes" as the DFO claims, which are easily recognized and familiar to those observing the seal hunt.

      During 2006, the DFO claimed to have had 12 monitors for the Gulf hunt, the largest enforcement effort ever. Yet sealers in one region were allowed to take three times their quota without any consequences. In fact the Total Allowable Catch has been exceeded in four of the past five years.

      Myth #3: The seal hunt is sustainable.

      An unsuspecting young seal relaxes on the ice.

      A recent study by IFAW scientists found that the current management approach risks depleting the harp seal herd by as much as 70% in the next 15 years. Seal catch quotas set by the Canadian government are much higher than government scientists' estimates of what is sustainable, and these quotas are then allowed to be exceeded.

      The DFO often states that the harp seal population has tripled since the 1970s. However, this ignores the fact that between 1950 and 1970 the harp seal population was reduced by as much as two-thirds from seal hunting. Since 1995, harp seals are being killed at levels similar to those that caused a dangerous decline in the past, and the DFO now admits that the population has declined.

      Climate change is also presenting a new threat to the harp seal population by negatively impacting their breeding habitat. Increasingly, poor ice conditions off the east coast of Canada are causing higher than normal seal pup mortality. Government scientists estimate that in 2002, 75% of the pups in the Gulf of St. Lawrence died due to a lack of ice before the hunt even began. Yet the government continues to increase the total allowable catches for harp seals, putting the population at increased risk.

      Visit stopthesealhunt.com to learn more

      Many more myths about Canada's commercial seal hunt will be heard over the next few months in an attempt to justify the seal hunt. But no matter how the truth is distorted, it cannot change the fact that the seal hunt is terribly cruel.

      Keep an eye on your inbox for ways you can help put an end to this unjustifiable cruelty once and for all as our campaign to end the seal hunt builds momentum.


      Fred O'Regan
      President and CEO

      P.S. To learn more about the seal hunt, visit IFAW's campaign site at www.stopthesealhunt.com

      IFAW © 2007
      All gifts to IFAW represent a contribution to IFAW's entire mission. Donations will be used where they are most needed to help animals.

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      Help protect the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands, home to endangered Hawaiian monk seals.

      Send an email.
      We need your help to protect one of the world's most magnificent wild places - the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands (NWHI), home to diverse and threatened wildlife like Hawaiian monk seals.

      Last year, the White House created the NWHI National Monument, forming the largest marine wildlife reserve in the world.

      However, the substantially underfunded U.S. Fish and Wildlife Service (USFWS) is currently considering a controversial "Visitor Services Plan" to open up Midway Atoll to increased tourism and vessel traffic. Lack of funds may mean insufficient monitoring.

      Send an email today to ensure this fragile ecosystem is protected.

      There is no time to waste. Deadline for public comments is midnight, Tuesday, February 6! So, get your comments in today!

      Publicity associated with the NWHI Monument is attracting hundreds of new visitors into the fragile foraging grounds of the highly endangered Hawaiian monk seals.

      What's worse, controversial plans are being implemented to increase the level of vessel traffic throughout the NWHI even more over the next five years.

      It's critical that we weigh in on these developments.

      Send an email today. Tell USFWS to:

      Act now to protect the Northwestern Hawaiian Islands as a wilderness area;

      Ensure that visitor activities are confined to Midway Atoll and that they are monitored with sufficiently funded enforcement personnel;

      Initiate a lottery system for access to Midway and a daily cap on visitors;

      Given deep concerns about cruise ships, provide more details on how the introduction of invasive species, including from diving operations and visitors, will be prevented;

      Require a transparent public process and a full Environmental Impact Assessment for the development of the upcoming Monument Management Plan.

      Help send a powerful message in support of keeping the NWHI a "pu`uhonua forever" - a place of refuge and safety.

      Take action today.

      Thanks for all you do!


      The Environmental Defense Action Network Team


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