Nature's Wonders: Earth Doctor Reese Halter

Trees and their ancestors have been on planet for over 350 million years.
 
Trees are awesome CO2 warehouses: 
 
For every 1 metric ton of wood grown, trees sucked 1.5 metric tons of CO2 out of the atmosphere and released 1 metric ton of oxygen for all life to prosper on Earth.
 
Today there are over 80,000 different kinds of trees.
 
Conifers were the first type of tree and they grow cones with naked seeds. There are approximately 570 species of conifers on Earth
 
About 250 million years ago ginkgos where the first to resemble a typical tree.
 
Angiosperms make over 79,400 different species of trees. They grow fruits that are fleshy and cover the seeds. An apple is an excellent example of an angiosperm fruit.
 
Conifers rely upon the wind to spread their pollen. Angiosperms depend on birds and insects including bees, wasps, hornets, moths, flies and other insects to cross-pollenate flowers.
 
There are over 8,000 acres of natural areas with over 2.5 million trees in New York City.
 
There are almost 700 species of Eucalyptus.
 
Trees provide watersheds to supply drinking water for billions of people, protect cities from storm water runoff, and reduce heating and cooling costs to our homes and buildings by 40 percent. Trees and forests are massive carbon dioxide warehouses, and in return they provide oxygen enabling life on Earth. Trees also yeild some of the most potent cancer, coronary, and other disease-fighting medicines known to humankind.
 

TIPS ON HOW TO SAVE ENERGY

 
If you dont have to drive your car dont do it! Walk or ride a bicycle.
 
When it comes time to buy a car, consider a hybrid. You wont need to buy as much gasoline at the pump nor spend as much money.
 
If you can, take public transit. Use the down time to read, listen to your ipod or just relax.
 
Save energy and save money by changing your incandescent light bulbs to ultra-efficient compact flourescent or LED light bulbs.
 
Plug all electronic devices with stanby modes such as tvs, dvds, tabletop cable boxes and Xboxes into a power-bar and switch the power bar off when equipment is not in use. You will save at least 20% off your electric bill each month.
 
Unplug all cell phone, ipod, mp3 players, toothbrush cradles when not in use - when plugged in they continuously suck energy irrespective of whether devices are charging or not - they wastefully inflate your power bill.
 
Run your dishwasher, washing machine and dryer only when you have full loads. Run your washing machine using cold water not warm or hot. Dry your clothes on a clothes-line.
 
By lowering your thermostat in the winter to 68F or raising it in the summer to 80F (only 2 degrees Fahrenheit) each household can save 350 pounds of CO2 emissions a year.
 
Set your hot water heater no higher than 120 degrees Fahrenheit.
 
Make sure that your home has at least double-pane but preferably triple-pane glass windows and youll save on energy costs in the wintertime.
 
Make sure that the furnace, air conditioners and heat-pump filters are kept clean and replace filters regularly.
 
When you upgrade your appliances, TVs, telephones or sound equipment make sure that they are efficient. Check the Energy Star Label.
 
Always use the energy-savings settings on refrigerators, dishwashers, washing machines, clothes dryers and all other appliances.
 
Consider drying your clothes outside. The sun's uv will kill all bacteria and fungus as well you will save 15% from your electric bill by not running your dryer.
 
Take shorter showers. Try 3 minutes instead of 6 minutes. You will save a lot of water and energy .
 
Install low-flow shower heads and if your state hasnt legislated ultra-low-flow-toilets install them anyway. They save WATER.
 
Use a push lawn mower and a broom instead a gasoline mower or blower. You will get a work-out, reduce noise pollution and cut-down on your carbon foot-print.
 
Plant trees! Not only do they absorb CO2 but they provide much needed shade in the summer to protect your home by keeping it cooler, and trees provide habitat for urban critters.
 
Investigate putting solar panels on your roof. In many states you can sell excess power back into the local grid. Database of State Incentive for Renewable Energy.
 
Check your tire pressure monthly and change your air filter at least every 4 months.
 
Carpool to work or events.
 
Plan your errands so that you dont use your car for several single-purpose trips.
 
Check and see if your town or city belongs to Mayors Climate Protection Agreement.
 
Calculate your carbon footprint.
 
The purchase carbon offset to make up for your emissions. Most of us in North America use between 10 and 24 tons of CO2 a year. Buy your credits from The Conservation Fund, Solar Electric Light Fund, TerraPass, Native Energy or Sustainable Travel International.
REDUCE, REUSE and lastly REPURPOSE
Remember the 3 Rs of the 21st century: Reduce your fossil fuel footprint, reuse materials like glass and refuse plastics and plastic bags because there are over 51 trillion pieces of petroleum-based, subsidized plastics in the oceans. Everything is becoming contaminated because ocean plastics, which act like a perfect sponge for all toxins including flame retardants, PCBs, DDT, methylmercury, biphenols, phalates, pesticides and other toxins are then eaten by small fish. In turn, smaller fish are consumed by bigger predators. As thoses poisons move up the food chain they biomagnify -- increasing in strength by 100,000 times or more, so apex predators like eagles, sharks, orcas and humans are at great risk. Reuse materials like glass jars again and again. Lastly, repurpose materials so that we follow Nature and produce NO waste.

Support your local beekeepers; buy their honey, Google them -- make it a family day and visit them.

Dr Reese Halter -- The Steve Irwin.jpg