Heroes

You might be tempted to hate the guy in the sunglasses — until you realize who he is.

Let's start off with a spoiler: The jerk in the sunglasses is the SAME GUY who's explaining all the science-y stuff. (Whoa! Inception!) Because sometimes the only person you really need to convince is yourself. And all the doubters. Never forget the doubters.

You might be tempted to hate the guy in the sunglasses — until you realize who he is.
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Planet Victory Climate Change

FACT-CHECK TIME!

A lot of misconceptions (13, to be exact) were confronted here with some solid facts. How solid? Here's what our fact-checkers found:


  1. CLAIM: Global warming wasn't happening so they changed the name to "climate change." FACT: "Global warming" is technically correct; however, "climate change" indicates the wide range of problems (stronger storms, rising sea levels, ocean acidification, etc.) our planet is facing.
  2. CLAIM: The globe isn't warming. FACT: 13 of the 14 hottest years occurred this century. And the trend is even more clear when satellite data is included.
  3. CLAIM: In the past, scientists said the earth was cooling. FACT: Some scientists in the 1970s predicted cooling, but six times as many papers during the same period said it was warming.
  4. CLAIM: The earth is cooling. FACT: It's not just temperature that shows the warming. Sea levels are rising 3 mm a year, which indicates oceans are warming and, therefore, expanding. Also, Arctic sea ice is melting at unprecedented rates.
  5. CLAIM: Arctic sea ice is increasing. FACT: Look at the bigger data set, not just the latest little uptick, and you'll see the overall trend is downward.
  6. CLAIM: The sun is responsible for warming. FACT: The sun was getting brighter in the 1930s, but since the 1950s, the sun has been getting dimmer — and yet, temperatures continue to rise.
  7. CLAIM: Humans emit only a tiny fraction of CO2. FACT: That's true — 30 gigatons from human activity vs. 780 gigatons from natural processes. But the earth isn't in balance like it used to be, and current CO2 emissions are outpacing the balance. We know the increase is man-made because the isotope carbon 13, which is less common in fossil fuels, is dissipating in the atmosphere. In other words, we're seeing more CO2 in the atmosphere, and it's got the molecular signature of fossil fuels.
  8. CLAIM: Volcanoes emit way more CO2 than humans. FACT: Volcanoes emit about 0.25 gigaton, less than 1% of what humans emit.
  9. CLAIM: Water is by far the most potent greenhouse gas. FACT: Yes! But water in the atmosphere is increasing because the air is warmer. It's still a CO2 problem that creates a positive feedback loop. More CO2, more warming, more water, still more warming, and on and on...
  10. CLAIM: Predictions have failed. FACT: Most predictions actually agree with observations. A model from 1988 did disagree, but that's when we thought climate sensitivity was higher. If you rerun the model with 3 degrees of warming for every doubling of CO2, the predictions are right on.
  11. CLAIM: The earth has warmed and cooled in the past. FACT: Past changes were due to tilt, precession of tilt, and orbit of the earth — the Milankovitch cycles.
  12. CLAIM: CO2 lags behind the temp rise. FACT: 90% of temperature increases start after CO2 rises.
  13. CLAIM: Global warming isn't that bad. FACT: It means more intense weather, acidic oceans, and rising sea levels, along with a bunch of other terrible stuff. We'd be much better off just reducing carbon now, rather than paying the price later.
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Amazon

Shopping sustainably is increasingly important given the severity of the climate crisis, but sometimes it's hard to know where to turn. Thankfully, Amazon is making it a little easier to browse thousands of products that have one or more of 19 sustainability certifications that help preserve the natural world.

The online retailer recently announced Climate Pledge Friendly, a program to make it easier for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products. To determine the sustainability of a product, the program partnered with third-party certifications, including governmental agencies, nonprofits, and independent labs.

With a selection of items spanning grocery, household, fashion, beauty, and personal electronics, you'll be able to shop more sustainably not just for the holiday season, but throughout the year for your essentials, as well.

You can browse all of the Climate Pledge Friendly products here, labeled with an icon and which certification(s) they meet. To get you on your way to shopping more sustainably, we've rounded up eight of our favorite Climate Pledge Friendly-products that will make great gifts all year long.

Amazon

Jack Wolfskin Women's North York Coat

Give the gift of warmth and style with this coat, available in a variety of colors. Sustainability is built into all Jack Wolfskin products and each item comes with a code that lets you trace back to its origins and understand how it was made.

Bluesign: Bluesign products are responsibly manufactured by using safer chemicals and fewer resources, including less energy, in production.


Amazon

Amazon All-new Echo Dot (4th Gen)

For the tech-obsessed. This Alexa smart speaker, which comes in a sleek, compact design, lets you voice control your entertainment and your smart home as well as connect with others.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.


Amazon

Burt's Bees Family Jammies Matching Holiday Organic Cotton Pajamas

Get into the holiday spirit with these fun matching PJs for the whole family. Perfect for pictures that even Fido can get in on.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

Naturistick 5-Pack Lip Balm Gift Set

With 100% natural ingredients that are gentle on ultra-sensitive lips, this gift is a great gift for the whole family.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.


Amazon

Arus Women's GOTS Certified Organic Cotton Hooded Full Length Turkish Bathrobe

For those who love to lounge around, this full-length organic cotton bathrobe is the way to go. Available in five different colors, it has comfortable cuffed sleeves, a hood, pockets, and adjustable belt.

Global Organic Textile Standard: This certifies each step of the organic textile supply chain against strict ecological and social standards. Each product with this certification contains 95%-100% organic content.

Amazon

L'Occitane Extra-Gentle Vegetable Based Soap

This luxe soap, made with moisturizing shea butter and scented with verbena, is perfect for the self-care obsessed.

Compact by Design (Certified by Amazon): Products with this certification are packaged without excess air and water, which reduces the carbon footprint of shipping and packaging.

Amazon

Goodthreads Men's Sweater-Knit Fleece Long-Sleeve Bomber

For the fashionable men in your life, this fashion-forward knit bomber is an excellent choice. The sweater material keeps it cozy and warm, while the bomber jacket-cut, zip front, and rib-trim neck make it look elevated.

Recycled Claim Standard 100: Products with this certification use materials made from at least 95% recycled content.

Amazon

All-new Fire TV Stick with Alexa Voice Remote

Make it even easier to access your favorite movies and shows this holiday season. The new Fire TV Stick lets you use your voice to search across apps. Plus it controls the power and volume on your TV, so you'll never need to leave the couch! Except for snacks.

Reducing CO2: Products with this certification reduce their carbon footprint year after year. Certified by the Carbon Trust.

Photo by Naomi Hébert on Unsplash
gray steel 3-door refrigerator near modular kitchen

There's more to keeping a green kitchen than recycling your yogurt containers or opting to store your leftovers in glass Tupperware. Little things, like your trash bags, can add up, which is why it's important to try to reduce your footprint as much as possible. Fortunately, these sustainable kitchen products make it easy keep a green home!

Reusable Silicone Baking Cups



Reusable silicone cupcake liners save you money on having to buy disposable paper cupcake wrappers every time you bake. These sustainable cupcake liners are just as festive as anything you would throw away. Because the liners are made with a sturdier silicone, they can be used for other purposes, like arts and crafts projects.

Amazon Basics, $7.99 for a pack of 12; Amazon

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Photo by Anna Shvets from Pexels
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Increasingly customers are looking for more conscious shopping options. According to a Nielsen survey in 2018, nearly half (48%) of U.S. consumers say they would definitely or probably change their consumption habits to reduce their impact on the environment.

But while many consumers are interested in spending their money on products that are more sustainable, few actually follow through. An article in the 2019 issue of Harvard Business Review revealed that 65% of consumers said they want to buy purpose-driven brands that advocate sustainability, but only about 26% actually do so. It's unclear where this intention gap comes from, but thankfully it's getting more convenient to shop sustainably from many of the retailers you already support.

Amazon recently introduced Climate Pledge Friendly, "a new program to help make it easy for customers to discover and shop for more sustainable products." When you're browsing Amazon, a Climate Pledge Friendly label will appear on more than 45,000 products to signify they have one or more different sustainability certifications which "help preserve the natural world, reducing the carbon footprint of shipments to customers," according to the online retailer.

Amazon

In order to distinguish more sustainable products, the program partnered with a wide range of external certifications, including governmental agencies, non-profits, and independent laboratories, all of which have a focus on preserving the natural world.

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ZACHOR Foundation

"What's 'the Holocaust'?" my 11-year-old son asks me. I take a deep breath as I gauge how much to tell him. He's old enough to understand that prejudice can lead to hatred, but I can't help but feel he's too young to hear about the full spectrum of human horror that hatred can lead to.

I wrestle with that thought, considering the conversation I recently had with Ben Lesser, a 91-year-old Holocaust survivor who was just a little younger than my son when he witnessed his first Nazi atrocity.

It was September of 1939 and the Blitzkrieg occupation of Poland had just begun. Ben, his parents, and his siblings were awakened in their Krakow apartment by Nazi soldiers who pistol-whipped them out of bed and ransacked their home. As the men with the shiny black boots filled burlap sacks with the Jewish family's valuables, a scream came from the apartment across the hall. Ben and his sister ran toward the cry.

They found a Nazi swinging their neighbors' baby upside down by its legs, demanding that the baby's mother make it stop crying. As the parents screamed, "My baby! My baby!" the Nazi smirked—then swung the baby's head full force into the door frame, killing it instantly.

This story and others like it feel too terrible to tell my young son, too out of context from his life of relative safety and security. And yet Ben Lesser lived it at my son's age. And it was too terrible—for anyone, much less a 10-year-old. And it was also completely out of context from the life of relative safety and security Ben and his family had known before the Nazi tanks rolled in.

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via WFTV

Server Flavaine Carvalho was waiting on her last table of the night at Mrs. Potatohead's, a family restaurant in Orlando, Florida when she noticed something peculiar.

The parents of an 11-year-old boy were ordering food but told her that the child would be having his dinner later that night at home. She glanced at the boy who was wearing a hoodie, glasses, and a face mask and noticed a scratch between his eyes.

A closer look revealed a bruise on his temple.

So Carvalho walked away from the table and wrote a note that said, "Do you need help?" and showed it to the boy from an angle where his parents couldn't see.

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