Change the World Wednesday – 5th Nov

guavabuds

Buds on Clorinha’s guava tree

I’m not really ready to do this post, it’s 10 o’clock and already I am sweating.

I need more coffee, but it’s too hot to use the stove.

In Rio de Janeiro we are approaching 110 days without meaningfull rain. Really that is a drought, when we should be having the daily spring rains

The plants in the praça are wilting badly. I have just taken a bucket of water over to the patch of bushes in front of my house and poured a jug of water at the base of some.

I water Clorinha’s guava tree daily, and it is thriving, it even has the buds of four blossoms developing.

If the small bushes respond to my water, I’ll do it again tomorrow.

The heat of the past weeks has become oppressive, broaching 40ºC (106ºF) daily, with the thermal index even higher.

São Paulo had a lot of rain over two days, but not enough to fill the reservoirs, just enough to stop them from getting any lower.

The bushes are wilting sadly

The bushes are wilting sadly

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Time to move on with this week’s CTWW on laundry detergent.

This week, please do an honest review of the laundry detergent that you are currently using. Do a little research on the list of ingredients to find out which are safe and which are not. Talk about how the product performs, especially in cold water. What kind of packaging does it come in. How does the price rank compared to other brands. If you’d like to mention the brand, please do so. The idea this week is to share information on laundry detergents so that we all benefit.

I am currently using Ypê. Although I sometimes use Ariel, the deciding factor is the price.

And, I admit that I haven’t given a thought about what’s in it.

soapboxSo, let’s have a look. Wow, the printing is so small I can’t read it even with my glasses. I had to take a photo to see it clearly on screen.

Okay, so the content is listed in Portuguese, English and Spanish.

OMG! I just had a FireFox crash… luckily it restored my post.

  • Anionic surfactant – biodegradable surface acting agent that lowers surface tension
  • Suspending agent – helps to active pharmaceutical ingredients stay suspended in the washing water.
  • Chelant is basically a natural water softener like citric acid
  • Alkaline agent – is actually delicate laundry detergent; specially formulated with Polymer-A (an anti-redeposit agent)
  • Inorganic salt
  • Optical brightener – synthetic chemicals added to liquid and powder laundry detergents to make clothing appear whiter and brighter, and thus cleaner. May be potentially toxic to humans and “Aminotriazine- or stilbene-based whiteners…may cause developmental and reproductive effects.”
  • Active Ingredient: Linear alkylbenzene sulphonate – rapidly biodegrades, but initially toxic to fish. (See note anionic surfactant above)

NB: the Portuguese list does not equate with the English translation.

Many Brazilians use cloro (chlorine) to soak clothes before hand washing. I have found that this practice rots the material and reduces the life of garments.

My big beef, is that they use generic terms for the ingredients, and not specific terms that can be identified.

Brazilians basiclly don’t give a shit about this information, besides, if they did, generally they don’t have the education to remotely understand it. Which, of course, suits the manufacturers fine.

From my point of view, I am really none the wiser. I have understood that some of the ingredients are basically not so good for the environment, but because of the generic names I can’t pursue the matter and be more specific.

But it has prompted me to buy Ariel next time and compare the ingredients.

Both are usable in cold water and come in a cardboard box with some kind of glossy lining.

That’s my lot for the day.

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6 responses to this post.

  1. Posted by marie on November 5, 2014 at 1:29 pm

    I’m sorry to hear you are going through this drought and heat. We are heading into winter and hoping it won’t be a repeat of last year.

    For the soap powder. I make my own, the fragrances became unbearable for me.
    I use bar soap(homemade) Borax and Washing Soda.It’s cheap to make, grating the bar soap can be a bit of work and scraped fingers 🙂

    I buy the largest boxes I can find and transfer them to a plastic bucket.

    The one drawback is I find it does best in warm water.

    We have been using our on for about 5 years and we’re quite happy with it.

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    • >Marie, we don’t do our laundry in hot water, at least the lower echelons of society don’t; there are some with hot water washing machines, but they are very expensive and not available to most unless you want to end up in debt.

      AV

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  2. I hope you get some much needed rain a a break in the temperatures. I wish we could split some of the difference in temperatures because we’re moving into winter here and I prefer the warm over the cold.

    Your detergent, while not considered an eco option at least doesn’t have half the ingredients that many of ours do.

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    • >Lois, we got a little last night, hopefully the forecast is right and there will be more today.

      I tried to check out some other brands here in the supermarket yesterday, but I didn’t have my glasses… futlie exercise.

      AV

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  3. I’m glad you didn’t lose another post!

    And wow about the temperature and the drought. Global warming.

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