About LaurenMarie567

Hey! My name is Lauren Smith. I am currently a junior at DeKalb School of the Arts. My major is drama and my minor is media. I enjoy making music and writing raps to positively influence people. I like helping to save the environment!

Paper or Plastic…or Neither

Earlier this summer I took a trip to New York and while I was there I took at visit to CVS. As usual we went in, gathered up out items then made our way to the checkout counter. After we checked out, the cashier just gave us our items…without a BAG! At first we were very confused then asked “do we get a bag?” and the cashier responded by saying “we aren’t able to give bags for items here.”  So we gathered up our items in our arms (thankfully we didn’t get a lot of stuff ☺). As we walked home I was talking to my sister about why we didn’t get a bag and she said “its because of the environment – plastic has a hard time breaking down in the environment”. I’m happy that CVS is actually doing this because many people don’t properly discard of their trash and grocery bags. By not giving customers bags, it’s lowering the amount of harmful materials that will ultimately end up on the side of street, in the sewers, and in oceans. And if the bags get into the ocean, they are dangerous to the animals that inhabit the water.

Many people think that it’s automatically better to use paper bags but there are a lot of studies that contradict that claim. Paper production emits air pollution, specifically 70 percent more pollution than the production of plastic bags but both are still bad for the environment. Many people have a tendency to litter their plastic bags resulting in bags everywhere such as on the sides of the roads. Wildlife tends to mistake plastic bags, for food resulting is serious consequences to their health. So really there is no choice that’s better than the next, both have various downsides. You’re best bet is to get a reusable bag and save the environment some hurt.

Great visit to the Atlanta Botanical Gardens

Over the weekend I visited the Atlanta Botanical Gardens and was amazed by the beautiful plants I saw. These plants were not your average small looking plants; they were extra ordinary, eye-catching pieces of artwork. As I was walking through different exhibits of the garden I was amazed by what could be made out of these regular plants. The Atlanta Botanical Gardens is comprised of a number of smaller themed gardens. Each contains different landscapes to display a variety of plants. While admiring each plant at the garden I realized how beautiful nature is and how we really need to preserve nature because it is so peaceful and brings joy to the people observing them.

The Atlanta Botanical Gardens implemented a plan called “The Green Expansion plan”. It was a large-scale expansion project that was completed in the spring of 2010 that doubled the size of the gardens while modernizing them at the same time. The plan was built around five key areas of human and environmental health: sustainable site development, water savings, energy efficiency, materials selection and indoor environmental quality. By incorporating a variety of energy-saving strategies with environmental sustainability considered throughout the project and recycling any trees removed as a result of construction, efforts were made to make this expansion eco-friendly.

Also on my visit, I noticed a group of people were gathered in a room filled with beautiful roses to play a game.  So I joined them! We all had a cup and when a time keeper said “go” and we filled our cups with as many roses as possible. This was done in order to reuse roses that were otherwise going to be discarded in the trashcan.  I got some very pretty roses. It was a great experience and you guys should definitely go!

Think Twice Before You Exfoliate

Every day starts out the same. You wake up, get out of bed, and then head to the bathroom to get ready for the day. You brush your teeth and then wash your face with your regular face wash, but, wait–did you ever realize that you could be harming the environment?

Yes, I am serious! It’s not even 7am yet and the destruction has begun. It may be in your morning face wash: microbeads. They can be found in products such as Neutrogena, Clean and Clear, Biore, Clearasil, and more. You may think they’re just nothing or don’t affect anything but—they do. These small microbeads are harming the environment more than we know it.

According to The Sydney Morning Herald, “These are minute bits of plastic that have been inserted into everyday products from facial creams to toothpaste, proclaimed in advertising as a healthy advance but which are turbo-charging an already dire problem – the global pollution of oceans, lakes and rivers by cast-off plastic.” After you wash your face or brush your teeth, these microbeads are going down the drain. They are getting released into the environment, all ready broken down, and not filtered by the sewage systems. Microbeads are getting into the ocean, then fish and other sea life are consuming them. Now guess what happens? We eat those fish who are consuming the microbeads! Scientists still don’t know the potential dangers of consuming fish and other species with microbeads in their guts.

The surprising part is that facial scrubs that exfoliate aren’t even that beneficial to you because it breaks down your outer layer of skin that is important. According to Professor Greg Goodman, “Most science dermatologists don’t like exfoliation because the barrier functions of the skin get exfoliated and that’s a negative thing for your skin.” Bottom line is that we need to think twice before we exfoliate with facial washes containing these tiny plastic balls of harm. I don’t think any of you want to consume plastic!

Changing the World Through Music

 

Hey everyone! Over the weekend I participated in a “Youth Action Lab” for the Alliance for Climate Education (ACE). Myself along with six others went to Doppler Recording Studio and recorded a song to bring awareness to environmental problems. We are known as the “Planet Savers,” and we help the environment and world through music relating to today’s youth.

Bright and early on Saturday morning, we got up and went to the studio to lay down the tracks. If you didn’t know, I enjoy rapping and do it whenever I get the opportunity to. The song is comprised of a chorus and 3 verses, so we (the 3 rappers) wrote one verse each and then hopped into the booth to record it. My verse was mainly about how we should recycle, stop pollution, and help the animals because I am an animal lover. The whole experience of being able to have fun making such a great song and make a difference through it is really amazing. The overall message of the song is positive and gives you good steps to partake in to become a planet saver yourself!

I want you guys to be inspired to make a difference by doing things that you love to do. Just like how I said in the song we recorded on Saturday, “helping the world, its not a chore”. This is very true because I feel like helping is sometimes made out to be more difficult than it actually is! You can help others through many areas in the arts or sports or by whatever way interests you. Its up to you and have fun while doing it!

People in the picture from left to right: Me, AeShalon, Ms. Amber, Nakia, and Danielle. Go Planet Savers! Special thanks to Ms. Amber for organizing this awesome experience!

Plastic Water Bottles

Listen up, OnAir community–there’s a new student blogger in town. Everyone say hello to Lauren, and click here if you’d like to join our blogger team too!

STOP! STOP! Put that plastic water bottle down and read this!

Hey everyone! This is my very first blog post on this website and I am going to be talking about water bottles. Plastic water bottles have a very harmful effect on the environment. According to the Huffington Post, there are about 50 billion water bottles consumed every year. That’s crazy!

Here’s another fun fact, we use 17 million barrels of oil a year to manufacture them. You all just take a minute to think about that–and it’s just for those regular sized bottles of water that you might think take almost nothing to make.

Here’s what’s even more surprising: plastic water bottles are not biodegradable, making them decompose over a slower, longer period of time. That means they just sit in landfills for many years, polluting the environment and harming everyone. Sure, you might not see the effect that it’s having on you right now, but future generations will be affected by our decisions now. In some parts of the world they are already dealing with the consequences brought on by polluting the air.

Ten percent of the plastic bottles manufactured worldwide end up in the ocean, the majority of that settling on the ocean floor where it will never degrade. Who wants to harm all of those cute little sea animals? Right, nobody does!

That’s why we should all make the right switch to reusable bottles. They are amazing! Reusable bottles are so much more fun because you can personalize your bottle to make it well, YOURS! If you like purple zebra print you can put purple zebra print on it and anything else that appeals to you.

Go on and make the switch.

 

Source:  http://www.huffingtonpost.com/norm-schriever/post_5218_b_3613577.html

Photo credit:  http://www.nerjanow.com/why-not-to-buy-bottled-water/