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Brais Seara / Moment / Getty Images

By Amanda Abrams

By now, the word is out: Fashion, particularly "fast fashion," is killing our planet. Low-cost, cheaply made clothes that are designed to be worn briefly until styles change are terrible for the environment.

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"Youth for climate" activists who are blocking the access doors to the Quatre Temps mall at La Defense business district, west of Paris on Nov. 29, are pushed by customers who are attempting to enter the mall as activists demonstrate against Black Friday. PHILIPPE LOPEZ / AFP / Getty Images

Despite its association with the U.S. holiday Thanksgiving, Black Friday has spread to shoppers and stores around the world. Now, some French lawmakers are trying to stop that.

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EcoWatch Daily Newsletter

Woman buying eco-friendly products in a supermarket. Martin Leigh / Oxford Scientific / Getty Images

By Jacinta Bowler

With climate change an ever-looming anxiety, whole industries have sprung up dedicated to help alleviate the stress. Tote bags. Metal straws. Existing companies are trying their best too: clothing retailer Zara has announced that 100 percent of the fabrics it uses will be sustainable by 2025 while Apple has said it has plans to eventually stop mining.

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Motivating slogan "Make Friday Green Again" urges consumers to ignore Black Friday sales. anyaivanova / iStock / Getty Images

Black Friday is one of the busiest shopping days of the year, and the consumption it encourages can take a toll on human and planetary health.

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By Joe Vukovich

Under the guise of responding to consumer complaints that today's energy- and water-efficient dishwashers take too long, the Department of Energy has proposed creating a new class of dishwashers that wouldn't be subject to any water or energy efficiency standards at all. The move would not only undermine three decades of progress for consumers and the environment, it is based on serious distortions of fact regarding today's dishwashers.

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A Boeing 737-800 BCF (Boeing Converted Freighter) is marked "Prime Air" as part of Amazon Prime's freight aircraft during the 53rd International Paris Air Show at Le Bourget Airport near Paris, France on June 22. Mustafa Yalcin / Anadolu Agency / Getty Images

It's Prime Day! The day when thousands of increasingly absurd items are discounted so deeply that you suddenly need items you never knew existed. Yes, I do need a hotdog shaped toaster next to me while I watch this Fast & Furious seven movie box set! And I need it in my house today!

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By Cullen Schwarz

Ethical shopping is a somewhat new phenomenon. We're far more familiar with the "tried and tested" methods of doing good, like donating our money or time.

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Environmental activists and campaigners from several organizations gathered in Parliament Square to protest against the governments lack of action on the climate change and destruction of the environment on May 1 in London. Wiktor Szymanowicz / Barcroft Media / Getty Images
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Enrique Díaz / 7cero / Getty Images

By Jazmine Velasquez

My family's defining motto is "Siempre usa como lo que tienes." ("Always use what you have.") Mom and grandma have used the expression so many times, I hear their voices every time I want to get a $15 poke bowl after class but have leftovers in the fridge at home. I hear them when I have the urge to buy new clothes that I don't need or get a nice notebook when I already have too many. This impulse becomes even stronger when I cook, because for my family, food is love and not to be wasted.

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Taz / Flickr / CC BY 2.0

By Mathy Stanislaus

If you need motivation to skip the straw at lunch today, consider this: Scientists found that even Arctic sea ice—far removed from most major metropolitan areas—is no longer plastic-free. According to Dr. Jeremy Wilkinson of the British Antarctic Survey, "this suggests that microplastics are now ubiquitous within the surface waters of the world's ocean. Nowhere is immune."

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How much stuff will you give and receive this holiday season? Add it to the growing pile—the 30-trillion-ton pile. That's how much technology and goods humans have produced, according to a study by an international team led by England's University of Leicester. It adds up to more than all living matter on the planet, estimated at around four trillion tons.

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