As a conservationist, I believe in conserving our natural resources, and as an environmentalist, I believe in caring for and protecting the environment.

In addition, as a nature and wildlife photographer, I'm aware of our precious natural resources each time I look through my camera's viewfinder, and I never take for granted the unparalleled beauty of the great outdoors.Camera and film companies, realizing that there are lots of photographers like me "out there," and understanding the benefits of recycling and reducing waste, are becoming more and more environmentally aware.

For example, Kodak recently introduced two new one-use Fun Saver Pocket 35mm cameras that are environmentally friendly. By weight, 77 percent of the flash model and 91 percent of the daylight model can either be recycled or reused. Here's what happens when the new cameras are dropped off at participating photofinishers and sent back to Kodak:

- The front and rear covers are ground up and recycled into covers for new cameras.

- The camera body, including the electronic flash system, is tested, inspected and reused.

- The viewfinder is re-ground and recycled into new parts.

- The battery, if returned to Kodak, is donated to charity. Alternatively, it can be reused by the photofinisher.

The new Fun Saver Pocket one-use cameras don't look like traditional one-use cameras, in their cardboard-covered, rectangular boxes. Rather, they have rounded corners and look more like a point-and-shoot camera. In addition, they are among the smallest one-use cameras available. The flash model sells for under $15, and the daylight model sells for under $10.

Canon, too, recently introduced an environmentally friendly camera, called the Canon Del Sol (the sun), which is the world's first 35mm fully automatic (including focusing) solar-powered camera.

By utilizing solar power (via a unique solar panel), Canon has eliminated the need to replace the battery.

The new Del Sol has a 32mm lens, a built-in automatic flash, with a red-eye reduction mode and a real-image viewfinder (so what you see is what you get, as far as composition goes).