Ways to Prevent the Zika Virus

5 Ways to Protect Yourself from Zika Virus

At Applied Resource Management, we pay close attention to various topics and problems that concern the environment. While most of our services relate to energy, soil studies, and well drilling, our interests don’t begin and end there. We’re also concerned with things that threaten our world, and lately that includes the Zika virus.

For the last few months, people all over the world have been worried about Zika. Zika is a virus that is spread through the bite of an infected species of mosquito. Unlike the mosquitos we’re used to, this species bites in the daytime and is much more aggressive than others. While the Zika virus itself isn’t deadly—in most cases, it causes only mild symptoms, such as fever, rash, joint pain, and headache—it can have dire consequences for pregnant women, causing severe birth defects. Another problem with Zika is that in addition to catching it from a mosquito bite, it can also be sexually transmitted. This puts both men and women at risk.

While there have not yet been any cases of Zika contracted in North Carolina, there have been a number in Florida and South America. People who travel to these areas are also at risk of contracting it and bringing it home with them.

There are currently no vaccines or medicines for Zika, and the long term effects have yet to be studied. In the meantime, the best thing we can do is protect ourselves from contracting the virus. Below are a few tips that will help keep you and your loved ones safe.

  1. Get rid of standing water. Mosquitos reproduce in standing water, so don’t let water accumulate in your yard or on your property. Each week, empty or get rid of cans, buckets, plant saucers, wheel barrows, and anything else that might be holding water. If you have an unused well on your property, it’s a great idea to have it properly sealed by an environmental professional such as Applied Resource Management, as it will quickly become a breeding ground for insects.
  2. Cover exposed skin with long-sleeved shirts and pants. In the hot summer months, it’s natural to wear shorts and tank tops. While these outfits will keep you cool, they won’t protect you from mosquito bites. Whenever possible, keep your skin covered. The best defense is a good offense!
  3. Use EPA-registered insect repellent that contains DEET. When it comes to protecting our health, we sometimes have to make certain compromises. One of those is the use of DEET. While all-natural repellents have their place, a potential Zika outbreak isn’t one of them.
  4. Stay in places with AC and window screens to keep mosquitos out. This suggestion may seem obvious, but it’s worth stating. If you have an outdoor porch you love, the threat of mosquito bites is a great excuse to screen it in and protect yourself from unwelcome guests. 
  5.  If you are currently or plan to become pregnant, avoid traveling to areas experiencing a Zika outbreak. While anyone can contract Zika, women of child-bearing age are at the greatest risk, due to the high likelihood of birth defects caused by the virus. If you or someone you love falls into this category, the solution is drastic but clear: don’t travel to areas in the midst of an outbreak. While a vacation to Brazil or Florida sounds nice, it’s simply not worth the risk right now.

If you think you have Zika, see your healthcare provider or doctor immediately to make sure you protect yourself and others from this virus. If you want to protect yourself against Zika and mosquitos in general through clean water and a sealed well, contact Applied Resource Management today.

Tips for Living a More Environmentally Friendly Life

5 Easy Ways to Celebrate Earth Day

At Applied Resource Management, we pride ourselves on being environmental professionals. Our services help businesses succeed and individuals thrive, while still protecting the earth that we all share. That’s why we’re excited to spend Friday, April 22nd, celebrating Earth Day.

Founded in 1970, the mission of Earth Day is to celebrate the planet, encourage others to build a healthy, sustainable environment, and protect the Earth for future generations. Saving the planet is a big job, but no action is insignificant. Even small changes can have a big impact!

To help you have fun while saving the world, we’ve put together five fun and easy things you can do today to help spread the love this Earth Day. Remember, we only have one planet. Let’s treat it right.

1. Visit a State Park.
North Carolina, where Applied Resource Management is based, has a great state park system. It doesn’t matter if you prefer recreation areas, lakes, trails, the ocean, or the mountains—the Tar Heel State has it all! If you’re on the coast, check out the native carnivorous plants at Carolina Beach State Park, and if you feel like trekking to the mountains, reserve a spot at Mount Mitchell State Park. The hardest part will be choosing which park to visit first!

2. Be Safe with Electronic Waste.
As technology changes our lives, it also changes our landfills. More than 50 million tons of electronic waste (known as “e-waste”) is tossed each year, and only a quarter of that is recycled. The next time you upgrade your smartphone, buy the latest Kindle, or splurge on a skinnier laptop, make sure you dispose of your old electronics in a responsible manner by taking them to an e-waste recycling facility.

3. Plant a Garden. 
Growing your own groceries is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint (your food doesn’t have to travel across the country to get to your table) and it will also encourage you to eat healthier (let’s just say it’s not easy to grow Oreos and Twinkies). If you get really into gardening, consider installing an irrigation well to keep your water bill down. If you don’t have space for a garden, you can also make an effort to shop at markets and support local farmers in your own community.

4. Just Say No to Junk Mail.
Did you know over 100 million trees are cut down each year to produce junk mail? That’s a terrible toll on the earth, and all for a bunch of credit card offers, catalogs, and advertisements you didn’t even want in the first place! The official Earth Day website has some great tools for cutting junk mail out of your life. Pledge to receive less junk mail today, and create a greener lifestyle for your family and home.

5. Install a Geothermal System.
We may be biased, but at Applied Resource Management we think one of the best things you can do for your home and for the environment is to install a geothermal energy system in your home. This is an energy-conscious way to provide heating and cooling in your home, and will also save you money in the long run! If you’re interested in this option, contact us to learn more.

We hope these tips inspire you to live a green life, on Earth Day and every day! For more environmentally friendly tips, like us on Facebook. Happy Earth Day!

Green Tips for the Holidays

How to Green Your Holiday Celebrations

The holidays are a time of family, friends, and fun. There are gifts to buy, parties to attend, and traditions to uphold. At Applied Resource Management, one of the ways we like to celebrate is by finding creative ways to “green” the holidays. By thinking outside the box and changing up some of our old habits, we can enjoy the season while at the same time keeping our planet healthy. Now that’s a reason to celebrate!

Below are a few easy ways to go green this holiday season. By adopting even one small change, you’ll make the holidays happier for everyone—including the earth.

1.  Get LED holiday lights.

LED lights are 90% more efficient than traditional holiday lights, and they last twice as long. This is because they’re made from light-emitting diodes. LED lights are also safer, more durable, and more environmentally friendly that incandescent lights, and come in a variety of colors and styles. This is one holiday tradition you’ll want to adopt immediately!

2. Upcycle your wrapping paper.

Instead of buying rolls and rolls of wrapping paper, plastic peanuts, and bubble wrap, consider wrapping your gifts with alternative materials. Paper grocery bags are great (especially if you let the kids decorate them first), and the Sunday comics are always a festive choice. You can also use newspaper as an earth-friendly packing material. If you’re feeling really ambitious, sew a few cloth sacks with a simple drawstring tie, which can be used year after year.

3. Recycle your tree.

When it comes to Christmas trees, the real vs. fake debate is heated. Both sides have some great points, but we’re not here to take sides. Instead, we suggest that if you do choose to buy a real tree, make sure to recycle it after the holidays are over. Many cities will recycle your tree for you—just check your local city’s website for drop-off locations. You can also recycle it yourself by making your own mulch, placing it in your pond for a natural fish habitat, or using it in a variety of craft projects, such as pine scented satchels and seasonal wreaths.

4. Batteries not included.

If you’re a parent, the words “batteries not included” are some of the most annoying ones you’ll hear—especially if you’ve forgotten to stock up! To save yourself a headache and to save the planet from unnecessary waste, buy rechargeable batteries and plug them on before you go to sleep on Christmas Eve. Once gifts are unwrapped the next day, your power will be ready to go and you can reuse them once they’ve run their course by recharging them. You’ll never run out of batteries, your kid’s toys will continue to work, and you’ll cut down on waste—everybody wins!

5. Keep it local!

It’s hard to resist the siren song of Amazon, but we encourage you to try! By shopping locally, you cut down on the carbon footprint of gift giving, as local gifts and handmade gifts don’t need to be shipped across the country, and don’t arrive in oversized boxes filled with packing material. Another bonus: you’ll be keeping you money where you live, supporting the business run by your friends and neighbors, and making your community stronger. Now that’s a gift!

 

We hope this list inspires you go green for the holidays! If you want to keep up your momentum by making more positive changes in 2016, contact Applied Resource Management today. From Geothermal Energy to Well Drilling to Environmental Services, our talented team can help make 2016 your greenest year yet. Happy holidays, and have a great New Year!

Well-Vu

Introducing: Well-Vu

At Applied Resource Management, we know the importance of ensuring that both our experts and our equipment are up-to-date and adhere to the latest technological advancements. To that end, our staff is made up of highly trained geologists, environmental professionals, and licensed soil scientists, and our equipment includes drill rigs, support trucks, backhoes, mini excavators, cranes, and bushogging machines. Now, we have a new piece of equipment to add to our list. Introducing: Well-Vu.

What is Well-Vu?

Well-Vu is an underwater viewing system. Portable and easy to use, it is essentially an underwater, down hole camera and console. The viewing system comes with a fisheye camera that has a 180-degree lens, which shows twice as much detail as a standard lens. This allows us to view both the sidewalls and down the well at the same time, and clearly shows color variations caused by different contaminants and mineral deposits. This also eliminates the need for an “old-fashioned” two-camera system, and will allow us to get the information we need faster and more effectively. Thanks to the advancements provided by this powerful tool, we are better equipped to diagnose and repair any existing problems with your well.

How can Well-Vu help you?

We are excited to offer this new tool to our clients, and eager to share the ways that it can be used. For example, if you just bought a new property that has a well, Well-Vu can help us learn the condition of your well water. If you know something is clogging your well but can’t figure out what it is, Well-Vu can identify the problem. If you prefer to fix an existing well or drill a new one, Well-Vu can provide information and data to guide the process. Knowledge is power, and Well-Vu makes Applied Resource Management more powerful than ever before.

Ready to give Well-Vu a whirl?

If you have a well project that could benefit from the information and expertise gained from Well-Vu and our experienced and knowledgeable staff, contact Applied Resource Management today. In the meantime, like us on Facebook for the latest in environmental news and company updates.

Cold Weather Home Care

5 Ways to Lower Your Heating Bill This Winter

The temperatures are falling, the nights are getting longer, and the holidays are fast approaching. This can only mean one thing: winter is coming. While winter in southeastern North Carolina can be cold! These long winter months can be hard to handle, emotionally and financially. While turning up the heat and lighting up the house can make you feel better about those cold, dark nights, it can also do a number on your energy bill. Luckily, we have rounded up five ways to keep costs down without leaving you out in the cold.

1. Turn your thermostat down a notch.

For optimal efficiency (that is, the most comfortable temperature at the most reasonable price) 68° F is the sweet spot. You can turn it down even lower at night, when you’re asleep in your warm bed, and during the day when no one is home. While these temperatures might feel cool to some, think of it as an excuse to buy a plush robe, throw an extra quilt on the bed, and cuddle with a loved one.

2. Plug up your chimney.

While a blazing fire in your fireplace is a cozy sight, a cold chimney won’t keep anyone warm! If you do not use your fireplace regularly, then warm air may be escaping your home via your chimney, even if the flue is closed. To keep this from happening, block the airflow with an inflatable chimney balloon. They can help save up to $100 per year, making them worth the upfront cost. Plus, chimney balloons are built so that if you forget to take it out before making a fire, it will automatically deflate. Whew!

3. Insulate your attic.

Many attics in southeastern North Carolina do not have the best insulation. Because our winters are mild, this step is often skimped or even skipped. This winter, bring your insulation up to code, and enjoy 20 to 30% off your monthly bill. A properly insulated attic will also be a boon in the summer by keeping your icy-cold air conditioning inside, where it belongs!

4. Reverse your ceiling fan.

Ceiling fans usually come to mind when thinking up ways to stay cool, but they are also useful tools in the quest to heat things up. Simply set your ceiling fan to a low speed and let it spin clockwise. By reversing the direction of your fan, it will push warm air, which rises, down from the ceiling and toward the floor, where you and your family can actually enjoy it.

5. Install a geothermal system.

Geothermal energy is a great way to cut down on energy costs. By switching from a traditional HVAC system to a geothermal heating and cooling system, you can save anywhere from 30 to 70% on your home heating and cooling bill each year. You might even receive a 30% tax credit from the federal government, thanks to this environmentally friendly choice. While you may have read some myths about geothermal energy, we can assure you it is an excellent choice for any home! If you are interested in exploring your geothermal options, contact Applied Resource Management today. We provide a full range of geothermal well drilling and loop system installation services.

We hope these tips have given you a few ideas to lower your energy bill this winter while still staying warm and cozy. For more tips and creative ideas for your home, your business, and your environment, follow Applied Resource Management on Facebook. In the meantime, tell us: what is your favorite way to stay warm when the days begin to cool?