Eco CornerBy Jake Reiner
Eco Funds and Green Investing
Native Americans believed every decision should be made with the welfare of the 7th generation in mind. Live not only for yourself, but also for your children’s, children’s, children. Wouldn’t it be nice if the corporate kings, not to mention some of the industrial polluters, of the world thought the same? Well, some of them do. Investment fund managers around the globe are increasingly profiting, using socially responsible investing (SRI). The SRI funds support companies that meet high ethical and environmental standards, and the investment is paying off big.
“Investment portfolios involved in SRI grew by more than 240 percent from 1995 to 2003, compared with the 174 percent growth of assets under professional management over the same period.“ (Source: Social Investment Forum 2003 Trends Report). One good bet is Pax World Funds, established in 1971, currently with more than 70,000 shareholders and minimum investments as low as US$250. Make money and build a better future.
Green Hotels - Eco minded resorts around the world.
Eco tourism is booming, and that’s a good thing right? Across the globe local people are participating in global prosperity while becoming aware of the worth of protecting their natural resources. But, as travelers, how much impact on the environment are we having visiting en masse, and how about all the hotels we visit back home that aren’t eco anything? Now you can do a little more. Check out greenhotels.com, hotels actively greening the lodging industry with water-saving and recycling programs. Look for their cards in rooms from the Hilton to the Super 8, asking guests to conserve water and linens. Be one of the 70 percent of guests who participate. Please.
Tired of all the preservatives and secret additives you imbibe on your nightly convenience store pilgrimage? Wishing there was such thing as healthy junk food? Go nuts! From macadamias to cashews to chestnuts, nuts are non-processed, high protein, anti-oxidant, energy boosters and already on shelves near you. And recently organic peanuts have begun popping up in combinis and super markets all over Japan. Look for the green pack with JAS leaf symbol and OMIC certification. Buy two. They are cheap and every pack you buy sends a message to Mr. 7-Eleven—stock more organics!
Ever wonder if sustainable living and eco lifestyle is really possible? Is there anywhere in the world where people really have it figured out? Yes, there is—or was—in 16th Century Japan. Traditional homes were built with only locally harvested materials, no chemicals, and designed to let nature into the home while providing warm, dry shelter. Living in a home built in harmony with nature soothes the soul and can carry over into other aspects of your life. Now you can have your own traditional Japanese home thanks to Haiku Houses, a US-based construction company producing refined modern homes with a classic layout and comfort.
Organic Clothes Gets Dirty!!
A small clan in the hills of Alabama has developed a product capable of liberating the lives of millions of people around the world. From poor village women in India beating their laundry on river rocks to Maytag repairmen in Indiana, washing dirty T-shirts will be a thing of the past, because Earth Creations’ extensive line of fashionable tops comes with the dirt built in! Using natural materials, they have revived an ancient dyeing process that combines clays of different colors with natural fibers such as hemp, linen, cotton and organic cotton. Check out their line of beautiful earth tone tops, grown and sewn in the USA. You can find Earth Creations at A&F stores throughout Japan. See Green Pages for details.
A&F (03)3209-7575 www.aandf.co.jp