September 30, 2010

Cutting down on air pollution in your city

Filed under: Air Pollution — www.urbanreturns.com @ 11:15 am

While it’s always nice to get away and back to nature, at some point you have to come home. With air pollution the way it is these days, that can be a frightening proposition. Lately, almost everybody is looking over their shoulder to see the size of their carbon footprint. In big cities, it’s even more important. With that many people in one place, it can seem difficult to make a difference when it comes to lowering air pollution. And while there’s certainly a large task ahead of us, there are some simple steps you can take to making your home a safer place to breathe.

  1. Use energy conservation techniques to limit your energy spending. Turn off lights and devices when not in use.
  2. If possible, plant trees near your home to help shade your house during the summer.
  3. Purchase Energy Star-rated products to use energy more effectively.
  4. Limit your time in the car by combining trips, and follow the speed limit.
  5. Don’t idle in long drive-through lines. Go inside instead.
  6. Use devices with rechargeable batteries.
  7. Recycle applicable products and buy products made from recycled material. It’s a cycle. Get it?.
  8. Limit your time in the shower and use low-flow shower heads.
  9. Support legislation in your local government that focuses on healthier air.
  10. Make sure those letters you send are on double-sided paper. Save paper with a clean side for taking notes or making lists.
September 27, 2010

America’s most spacious zoos

Filed under: Zoos — www.urbanreturns.com @ 8:55 pm

There’s nothing like a trip to the zoo. If you’ve ever visited one as a child, it’s tough to pick which memory is most vivid. Was it the monkeys swinging expertly through the trees? The lumbering elephants slowly crossing their pens? Perhaps the taste of fresh cotton candy in your mouth while watching the wolves bathe nonchalantly in the sun?Whatever it was, a zoo trip is a great gift to share with your family. Every local zoo deserves support, and you hopefully won’t have to go far to find one near you. If you’re interested in planning a more invested trip, though, you might be interested to know where you can find the largest zoos in America. (more…)