Monday, December 31, 2012

What do I do with my Christmas Tree?

According to DC DPW residents should place  trees on the curb/alley along with their normal waste and recycling beginning December 31st. Trees picked up between December 31st and January 12th will be chipped and composted.

Green Resolutions for 2013

While there's nothing most of us can do to keep us from going off the Fiscal Cliff, you can make some green resolutions for 2013.  You're most likely already recycling everything you here are some ideas to take it to the next level.  

1) Sign up for Solar!  The DC City Council authorized $1.1Million for solar rebates for DC residents in 2013.  Check out DDOE's How To Guide for Solar Rebates and check out the DC Sun Website for updates on Solar Co-Ops and other solar energy promotions and events in the area. 
2) COMPOST!  Yes, you can!  I put my composter out in the alley years ago, and now many neighbors contribute to it.  OR, find a local community garden where you can drop your scraps off...or try out Compost Cab or FatWorm Compost.  Google it and dig a compost hole in your backyard.  Composting has cut my waste by more than 1/2. It's amazing to see how things decompose..especially when you integrate coffee grounds from your local coffee shop into the mix.  If you don't use the compost on your own yard, offer it up on Freecycle..and it will be gone in a heart beat!
3) Join the fight to stop coal burning at the Capitol Power Plant! Contact Jim Dougherty at at the DC Chapter of the Sierra Club to learn how to get involved.
4) Reduce your plastic footprint.  Plastics are not environmentally friendly and can negatively impact the health of humans and wildlife.  Reduce your plastic footprint in 2013. Check out Beth Terry's entertaining book, Plastic Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too.
5) Buy Used!  Instead of buying new goods, reuse and repurpose.  Amazon's Sell Your Stuff will market your used books, Kindle etc on their website.  Check out the "used" option when buying! is a great place to buy or sell Apple or Kindle products as well as many video games. is a great marketplace for women's clothing while ThredUp is a great place to buy and sell kid's clothing. 

Most of all, get those blackeyed peas cooking!  Here's to 2013!

Saturday, December 15, 2012

Green Gifts: Preserve Products

Support recycling...and reuse all those yogurt containers you've recycled through the years by giving Preserve Products to your favorite enviro geek. They make great stocking stuffers!  Preserve makes personal care (e.g. toothbrushes, razors, and blades), reusable tableware (plates, cups, cutlery) and kitchen goods (food storage, colanders, cutting boards) in a wide variety of cool colors. Locally, I find their products at Yes! Organic Market and Whole Foods.
  • Preserve products are made from 100% recycled plastics and 100% post-consumer paper.
  • Their plastic products are recyclable, either through our postage-paid labels and mailers (toothbrushes and razor handles) or at the curb in communities that recycle #5 plastic.
  •  Products are made in the USA, 
  • They don't test on animals. 
  • Products are made to last—and to look cool!

Saturday, December 8, 2012

Green Gifts: Bike Helmet Covers

Well, 'tis the season, so over the next weeks, I'll provide some green gift ideas.  Now that Mayor Gray has declared Uturns across bike lanes illegal (thank you!) and with the L St Cycle Track all coupled with really not so cold temps, it's a great time to outfit your cycle friends with some bike swag.  Helmet covers are a great idea as they help keep heads warm AND dry, and depending on the color, increase visibility. Sadly, I've not been able to find these covers at any local bike shops, so I bought mine on line.  I bought a "one-size-fits-all" model...and it worked on my helmet.  To boot, mine has reflector tape on the front..and a reflector tape loop on the back that I can attach an LED light to to further increase my visibility.  They come in a wide array of prices.  Mine cost some $12 and is made of durable and washable material.  Check 'em out!

Friday, November 23, 2012

Cleaning Green Part 3: Moisturizer/Lotion

It's winter, it's dry, and my skin starts to resemble something between fish scales and chicken skin. It's not pretty, and I have to use a moisturizer daily. For the last few years, I've been searching for an enivironmentally friendly moisturizer. I tried shea butter, but I just don't like the smell.  Then, a couple of months ago, I was at the DC Green Festival and I came across the Dr. Bronner's booth....and I think I've now found the solution. (ok, roll your eyes because I'm going to promote yet another Dr. Bronner's product to solve a problem).

Dr. Bronner now makes fair trade organic virgin coconut oil!  It's great as a cooking oil, but it's also a great moisturizer.  The oil absorbs into your skin quickly, so while it smells great as you apply it, you don't go around smelling like a coconut all day.  You really don't!  I bought a jar for about $11 at my local "Yes!". I think you can buy it at Wholefoods as well. To boot, it's sold in glass jars that helps me lower my plastic footprint.....and I'm not slathering a bunch of chemicals on my body everyday...just some natural and good smelling oil!  I really love this stuff...and it leaves my skin feeling very soft.  As it's hard to get my fingers into the jar, I just scooped out a few spoonfuls and packed it into plastic tub with a lid that I had.  I've also got a jar in the kitchen for cooking. Give it a try!....and stay tuned over the next weeks for my eco-friendly present ideas!

Saturday, November 17, 2012

Cleaning Green Part 2: No Poo!

OK, I've done it! I'm a recent convert to the No Poo Shampoo Movement!  I read Beth Terry's book Plastic-Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can Too over the summer.  It was a quick and fun read, but it also made me consider how I could further reduce my plastic and chemical footprint. I'd heard of using baking soda and water as a shampoo, but I color my hair a couple of times a year and I was afraid to try it. Then, in the spirit of "nothing ventured, nothing gained, but more because my shampoo bottle was empty, I decided to give the No Poo method a try.  

My Hair Regimen: Baking Soda and Vinegar
You'll find all sorts of No Poo recipes on the web. I decided to keep it simple. I put a tablespoon of baking soda into an empty shampoo bottle, filled it up with water..and voilà. ! I squirt a 2 or so tablespoons of the mix on my hair and massage it into my scalp. The mixture doesn't foam up..which takes some getting used to..and honestly, as other folks will tell you, there is a transition phase of 2-3 weeks while your hair remembers how to make its own (natural) oils (since its forgotten how to do this since you've been putting chemical shampoos on it for all these years!)  My hair became very dry.  Once I started using a vinegar and water rinse, things improved quickly (I mix a 3 tablespoons of vinegar to 2 cups of water, but you don't have to be exact and the vinegar smell doesn't stay in your hair). If you miss that "after shampoo" smell, add a couple of drops of jasmine or lavender essence to the vinegar rinse. (No Poo leaves your hair clean, but with no smell).

Now, my hair feels great and looks like it did when I used regular shampoo...but I'm not putting  all those chemicals on my scalp or down the drain. I'm also reducing my plastic footprint by not buying more plastic bottles of shampoo and conditioner. I travel for work, so I pack a small amount of baking soda in my my luggage so I can make a No Poo mix at my destination (and have downsized the liquids I travel with in the process). I'm a fan!

Friday, November 9, 2012

Cleaning Green Part 1: Soap!

At the DC GreenFest a couple of weeks ago, I came across the Dr. Bronner's booth. A long time favorite, that is both FairTrade and USDA Certified Organic, Dr. Bronner's is still out there. I buy their soap in a gallon size jug that I store under my sink. The soap is uber-duber concentrated, so I've long diluted it to wash my dishes and for my hand washing needs on the road or at home.  The soaps come in a variety of flavors. Dr. Bronner's soaps are:
  • Completely biodegradable and vegetable-based; 
  • Made with Certified Fair Trade and Organic Oils; 
  • Multi-Purpose: 18-in-1 Uses
  • Use no synthetic foaming agents, thickeners or preservatives; and
  • arepackaged in 100% Post-Consume Recycled Bottles and Paper Labels
What's not to love!

Tuesday, October 30, 2012

Who Ya Gunna Vote For? - Voting Green in DC's 2012 Election

If you're like me, you can't wait until the election is over.  The ads are enough to drive anyone nuts, and in the District, we're not even a swing state. 

But, do you know where to vote?
Do you know all of the offices that are up for election in your Ward?
Have you thought about who you are going to vote for?
To find your polling place, go to

The DC Board of Elections prints a handy-dandy and easy to read Voter's Guide.  You should have received a copy in the mail...and this year they were sent out well before the election! (I've received my guide the day or two after the election too many times).  This guide is a great resource and includes information on early voting places and times, absentee voting, accessibility for disabled residents, as well as a list of candidates up for election by position and Ward.

What Offices are Up for Election?
In addition to President and DC Representative, as a DC resident you'll also be able to vote for DC City Council Chair, two At-Large City Council positions, two US "Shadow" Senators and an At-Large Member of the State Board of Education.  In addition, residents of Wards 2, 4, 7 and 8 will be voting for DC Council candidates and State Board of Education candidates.  There are also a host of Area Neighborhood Commission (ANC) elections. Knowing your ANC candidate is the best way to ensure that your voice is heard in DC government!

Who Are the Environmental Candidates?
I've long looked to the Sierra Club for their endorsements for environmentally-minded candidates.  For this election, they've endorsed Phil Mendelson for DC City Council Chair and David Grosso and Ann Wilcox for the At-Large positions.  They've also endorsed some Ward Council candidates.  For a full list, check out

The Sierra Club also published a Nation-wide Voter's Guide, though (sadly) DC is not included.  Still this may be a good resource for some of your friends, so spread the word!

Most importantly VOTE..and tell your friends to vote, too!

Monday, October 8, 2012

The DC SEU - Helping DC Go Green

Yoohooo out there….you may have stopped by the DC Sustainable Energy Utility (the DC SEU) at the DC GreenFest.  They just received a $17M budget for FY13 to help households, businesses, and institutions save energy and money through energy efficiency and renewable energy programs! Shouldn’t you get a piece of this green action?  Their website is a bit clunky, but it’s worth taking a good look as it can save you money as you go greener!  Here are just a couple of their programs:

The DC Home Performance Program offers a $500 to households that successfully complete a qualifying home energy upgrade (think new molding around doors/windows, caulking or maybe new windows) of at least $1500.  Meanwhile, lower income households can qualify for a 5 year forgivable loan through the DC SEU’s Federal Home Loan Bank Program.  If you live in a condo, let the Condo Association know that the DC SEU, provides rebates for lighting upgrades and water-saving devices at no cost for installation to owners, property managers, or residents.

Wanna buy an energy saving CFL for the same price as a regular light bulb? The DC SEU has partnered with local businesses such as Home Depot, Safeway and Frager’s Hardware on Capitol Hill to do just this! For a list of all District retailers participating in this program, check out.

The DC SEU also has several programs for businesses. They’re helping DC building owners comply with a mandate to benchmark their energy efficiency by 2014.. and determine effective improvements that can save money – and energy. They offer several other programs for businesses including reduced up-front costs to businesses that upgrade to new energy-efficient technologies/ equipment. And, did you know that fluorescent tube lighting was banned for manufacturing by federal mandate on July 14, 2012? Ben’s Chili Bowl was a recent recipient of the DC SEU program that replaces fluorescent tube lighting with more efficient High-Performance T8 (HPT8) lighting at no cost.

 Created by the DC City Council as part of the Clean and Affordable Energy Act of 2008, the DC SEU is overseen by the District Department of the Environment (DDOE).  For more information on the DC SEU’s Programs, contact them at or 202-479-2222. They’re great folks!

Friday, August 24, 2012

I Heart My Tiffin

On a recent foray to Whole Foods, I spied a stainless steel tiffin.  Tiffins, also known as dabbas or bentos, are stackable lunch kits. At less than $20, I bought it on a whim - and - after a week of road testing, I'm glad I did! Why?
  • It gets me even farther away from plastic (I've been taking my lunch to work in glass Pyrex containers with plastic lids (that tend to leak in my backpack- eeewww!);
  • though it's ended up upside down in my backpack with food that included liquid, it did not leak (yay!);
  • the buckle mechanism is cool and makes a nice "clunk" noise when engaged;
  • it's a great conversation piece at work;
  • it encourages me to bring my own lunch;
  • it will be a practical way to carry food to potlucks with out risking spilling food on my the floorboard of my car (which has happened too many times); and
  • it can double as a drum in a pinch.
While I can't use it in a microwave, I usually put my food on a plate before microwaving to get a better distribution of heat anyway. 

Tiffins originate from India and Japan - but many other cultures likely figured this concept as well. There's a whole history of the evolution of tiffins here!  While mine is two tiered, it functions just fine using only one of the tiers.  There are MANY options out there...check on line...but also check in your local kitchen store! 

Sunday, August 19, 2012

More Summer Reading: How Bad Are Bananas? The Carbon Footprint of Everything

I liked this book as it put CO2 emissions in terms that translate to my life...and makes me think about things from a new perspective.  Sure, I know that biking is better than driving my car..but the author (Mike Benner-Lee) points out that if I'm powering by bike ride by eating air freighted produce, my carbon footprint for my bike ride increases. Darn! Another argument for buying local!  The average American has a 28 ton annual carbon footprint.  This book advocates ..but doesn't preach for a 10 ton diet..and provides ideas for how to get there.  It's a fun and easy read that will give you lots...I mean tons of fact fodder for your next fete.  Enjoy!

Sunday, August 5, 2012

Summer Reading for the Recycler: "Plastic Free: How I Kicked the Plastic Habit and How You Can, Too"

One of the blogs I followed it Beth Terry's "Plastic Free Life". It's a great blog, that is informative, humorous, and practical.  Beth explains in lay terms (well, as "lay" as you can get when you start talking about plastic chemical compounds) about why and how we should get plastic out of our lives - for health as well as environmental reasons.  She's now written a book - "Plastic Free" which puts all this logic into a pleasantly readable and compelling format that's fun and informative to read.  You can even order it in plastic-free packaging, or download it onto your e-reader.  Beth realizes that while it's impossible to rid your life of plastic, you can makes some changes that will reduce your consumption, and your carbon foot print.  I found I already do many of the things she suggests (clean with baking soda and vinegar and make my own yogurt and hummus), but she's given me some sources for some products that I currently buy in plastic ..and some ideas for some products that I can easily make myself. Rumor has it that she'll be coming to DC for some speaking events this fall.  Stay tuned!

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Pictures from Saturday's AntiFracking Rally !

Beat the Heat: Cover the Skylight

I love the solar tubes that I have in my house....but as I've tried to keep my electricity bill under control this summer, I have noticed how much heat they bring into my house. To reduce the heat, I'm covering them with some paper or cloth.  This will allow some light to still come in.  You can buy shades designed to cover skylights.  OR..why not cover it with a favor piece of material or work of art...or even wrapping paper. It will give your ceiling a new look...and give your electricity bill some welcome relief!

Sunday, July 22, 2012

Beating the Heat: lower the temp on your hot water heater!

It's baaaaack!  Yes, after a wonderful weekend reprieve from the high temps, the DC forecast says the high will be 100 degrees on Monday!  So, in a continuing effort to keep the house cool without breaking the bank.....lower the temperature on your hot water heater! I bet you won't even notice the difference...but your house will. Most hot water heaters are set at 140 degrees..when 120...or even less the summertime is just fine!  (I adjusted mine with a screwdriver in less than 2 minutes and can't tell the difference). Plus, lowering your water heater temperature by 10 degrees will save between 3-5% of your energy costs. Check out this website for more info:

Monday, July 16, 2012

Dealing with the Heat: forgo the clothes dryer

Minimize the use of your clothes dryer and other large machines that generate heat to a minimum. In addition to generating heat, every dryer contributes about a ton of carbon to the atmosphere every year. In this heat, let the sun take care of drying your clothes. They'll dry in a pinch whether they're hung inside or out, and they'll last longer as clothes dryers are hard on clothes. There are a wide variety of drying racks and clothes lines available. If you dont have outdoor access, hang clothes around the house on the backs of chairs and on door knobs or in a window or just string a piece of twine between two walls. Even towels will dry in a pinch in this heat...and you'll keep your house cooler by not heating it up with all that dryer heat!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Dealing with the Heat: Shade it!

Studies show that 10-30% of cooling and heating bills is due to leakages around windows and doors.  Window shades and blinds can reduce the amount of heat that enters your house and keep the cooling bills down. I found some great honeycombed pull-down shades online at JCPenny.  They were a cinch to install, stylish, and reasonably priced. Even opaque shades will cut down on some of the heat so you don't have to opt for the full blackout effect.  And if you're on a budget, hanging a sheet or blanket over your windows will work in a pinch!

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Keeping cool...and green during Summer's Heat: Fans are Fab!

It looks like DC's headed for another heatwave with temps this next week headed towards 100 degrees. Over the next few days, I'll be posting ways to keep your house cool and green without spending an arm and a leg.

Keep air moving with fans.  Even if you have A/C, ceiling fans and box fans can keep air moving through your house, and let you keep your A/C at a higher setting.     If you don't have AC, set a box fan (securely) in an window and let it catch some additional breeze.  If you're really hot, let the air of a standing fan blow across a bowl of ice. With ceiling fans, since hot air rises, the fan should rotate counter-clockwise in the summer to help keep the hot air higher.  Look for fans that have an Energy Star rating.


Thursday, July 5, 2012

Where to Buy Local Fruits and Vegetables

How many tomatoes do you see here?
Our household is on "tomato watch" - anxiously awaiting the reddening of this season's first tomato (the little ones don't count).  Until my bounty comes in, I'm trying to buy as local as I can.  The Washington Post read my mind and published this handy-dandy map of Farmer's Markets complete with location, hours and length of season, and a contact person.  That said, when shopping at a Farmer's Market, here are a few rules:
  • If you're trying to buy local, ASK where the goods came from.  Foods with stickers on them were most likely bought at a nearby grocery store before they came to your farmer's market...and the price of the goods was likely hiked up along the way.
  • If you're trying to buy local, think about what you're buying. Avocados (unfortunately) don't grow here.  Neither do oranges.  But some of that fresh corn from southern Maryland will go down like sweet butter this time of year..and tomatoes are just around the corner!
  • "Natural" doesn't mean "organic" ...but not all farmers can afford to go through the organic labeling process.  Again, if you're concerned about pesticide use on your fruits and vegetables, ask your farmer.  S/he should know...and if they don't...or they hedge on an answer, it's not a great sign.
  • Even supermarkets are picking up on the "locavore" trend!  Trader Joe's was advertising local produce the other day (though they still wrapped the tomatoes in plastic.  Stop that, please!)
Most of all, enjoy the delicious fresh goods of this summer.  It's a great time of year to eat right!

Sunday, May 6, 2012

Two Rivers Run Through It: The Potomac and Anacostia Rivers of Washington, DC

The Alice Ferguson Foundation has posted some results of the Potomac Watershed Cleanup held on Saturday, April 14th.  Thanks to your good efforts, with 392 sites reporting , some 124 TONS of trash were collected including 1252 tires, 138,650 recyclable beverage containers, more than 25,000 plastic bags and more than 28,000 cigarette butts. Among the interesting items pulled from the watershed were a deer Skull, dishwasher, a bucket of tar, a car radio, a couch, car parts, 3 bicycles, a stroller, a good football, a basketball and soccer ball, an American Flag and lots of foam packing material.  The good news is that as this trash was pulled from the watershed, it won’t be making its way to the Chesapeake Bay!

Meanwhile, the Anacostia Watershed Society has released their 2011 State of the Anacostia Report. Unfortunately, the report gives failing grades to the state of the river's water quality from its mouth at the Potomac River up to its crossing into Maryland. Trash brought in by stormwater runoff is the most evident issue, but toxins and the stormwater itself are serious issues that affect plants, animals and fish. On the bright side, D.C. gets a "thumbs up" for its river improvement plan. DC’s 5-cent plastic bag tax is reducing the amount of bags found in the water. Still, if we are to have a clean and swimmable Anacostia, Maryland and the Federal Government are going to have to pass and enforce legislation that will limit runoff from farms and industries. Find a full copy of the report, at

Monday, April 9, 2012

UpDated April 17: Earth Day 2012 Events in Washington, DC

Earth Day events for Sunday, April 22nd on the National Mall are now available.  There will be performances by Cheap Trick, Dave Mason, Kicking Daisies and Explorers Club!
Meanwhile, don't forget to signup to give the Anacostia some much needed TLC by participating in a clean up on Saturday, April 21.See details below
With Earth Day 2012 nearing, I've done some research on planned events for DC.  Cleaning up our Anacostia and Potomac rivers is (very) much needed and (really) fun activity. There are cleanups scheduled for Saturdays - April 14, 21 and 28.

Anacostia Watershed Society Cleanups: Most Anacostia River cleanups are scheduled for Saturday, April 21 though some are scheduled for Saturday  28.  There are 10 or so sites located in DC. Here’s a link that provides registration information, clean up details and a map with the location, date, and contact information for Anacostia related cleanups.

United States Botanic Garden: Friday, April 20, 2012, 10 a.m.-2 p.m. Get gardening advice from representatives of environmental organizations throughout the region and enjoy cooking demonstrations featuring local foods and fresh ingredients. Learn what you can do to make the planet a healthier place and how to become a more active steward of the earth.

Anacostia Watershed Society Earth Day Celebration: Saturday, April 21, 2012. The Rally will begin at 12noon in RFK parking lot #6 (right near the bridge that takes you to Kingman and Heritage Islands).  Metro Orange and Blue lines will take you there.

Trash from Saturday's Potomac Cleanup!
Earth Day on theNational Mall: Sunday, April 22, 2012. The Earth Day event includes a massive rally, top musicians, civic leaders, and celebrity speakers. The EPA will also host hands-on activities in their National Sustainable Design Expo where EPA, businesses, non-profits and college students will showcase their efforts to protect the planet. 2012 participants will be announced soon.

Earth Day at the National Zoo: April 22, 2012, 11 a.m.-3 p.m. Free and open to the public. No ticket required. Meet the Smithsonian National Zoo’s Green Team experts, participate in “green”-themed crafts, and learn simple daily actions that help you enjoy a more environmentally friendly lifestyle.

Earth Day Cruise on the Odyssey: Sunday, April 22, 2012. Board the Oydssey for an Earth Day Brunch Cruise to learn about green energy and environmental initiatives. Boarding at 10:45 a.m., the cruise will sail from 11:30 a.m. – 1:30 p.m. Prices: $64.90 per adult, $35.95 per child age 3-12.

Sunday, March 25, 2012

Cleaning your Closet and Doing Some Good!

As we gear up for Earth Day, Live Green and Repax have teamed up to help you clean out your closets AND benefit Goodwill of Greater Washington.  From now until April 20ieth, just drop off your usable but unwanted clothes at one of the locations listed below.

Sunday, March 4, 2012

Up, Up, and Away

I was thinking about balloons the other day and wondering about their environmental impact. There are two types of balloons out there: latex balloons that are filled with human air or helium and the mylar (foil-like) varieties.  Environmentally speaking, latex balloons are BY FAT the way to go. You can even compost them. WHO KNEW? Latex is organic, made from the sap of rubber trees through a process similar to that used for collecting sap for maple syrup. Latex balloons – whether you blow them up yourself or fill them with helium - will break down in about six-months – about the same amount of time as an oak leaf.  If released, latex balloons filled with helium, will explode into tiny pieces once they reach an altitude of six miles – and these fragments should be small enough that they won’t pose any danger to wildlife.  Note though that strings, ribbons and other attachments on balloons don’t explode and don’t breakdown quickly and they can pose a very real danger to wildlife. Mylar balloons are another story.  While they are reusable, they hardly ever are reused.  They are a foil product and don’t break down easily. 

So what’s the verdict?  If you’re going to buy balloons, buy latex balloons and fill them with helium or regular air.  Compost them as you can. If you’re going to do a balloon release, you can use helium filled latex balloons, but you shouldn’t tie anything to these as the strings will take time to break down and can pose pose a threat to wildlife when it does. Avoid using mylar balloons unless you’re going to reuse it…again, and again, and again.

Monday, February 20, 2012

Start Your Own Recycling Circle!

While DC curbside recycling accepts a lot of goods, most households generate a lot of goods that are re- or up-cyclable, but not in enough quantities to really make the effort worthwhile. The answer to this dilemma? - create your own recycling circle with friends. It’s easy! 

1) Gather a couple of friends/neighbors who are dedicated recyclers in on this idea. 
2) Decide what you (as a group) generate that you want to re- or upcycle. These good can include corks, energy bar wrappers, Brita filters, sneakers, denim, batteries, etc. 
3) Decide who in the group will commit to recycling what…and designate that person the point person for re- or upcyling that particular product. 

In my neighborhood, folks know that I upcycle corks and recycle batteries. Our local liquor store collects corks for me, and once a month I pick them up, add in the other corks I get from work, friends and my own stash and drop them off at a Whole Foods. Another friend collects energy bar wrappers and sends them off to Terracycle – which will even pay for the shipping! Proceeds go towards a local elementary school. Check out the right side of this blog to find places to re- or up-cycle your goods. If you don’t see what you want to recycle there, check out Terracycle to see if they have an ongoing brigade for your goods. While you’re at it, check out the wide list of environmentally friendly Terracycle products (gifts, toys, school supplies, cleaning products, patio furniture, etc) that are made from these recycled goods.

Sunday, February 12, 2012

Don't Underestimate the Power of the People

It's easy enough to fall into the trap of thinking that you as an individual have no power to change the world for the better. But, in fact, in the last six months, we've seen some clear examples that prove just the contrary. Bank of America reneged on its banking fees. The Susan B. Komen Foundation learned that people felt strongly that they should support Planned Parenthood and JC Penny decided to continue to keep Ellen DeGeneres as a spokesperson – despite her sexuality. Now, it’s your turn. Do you know where your toilet paper comes from? Buy toilet paper that is made from recycled and/or sustainably sourced content. Below is a video showing which brands (like Paseo) to avoid as well as a list of major US companies that have stopped sourcing Paseo – and other companies have done nothing. Call these supermarkets and let them know that you’re watching what they do. One person can make a difference!

Friday, February 3, 2012

Cork It!

CORKWATCH is an app from ReCork that lets you know which wines use REAL corks (good!) versus those ugly plastic corks(bad!).  It also allows YOU to add new wines to the list. The site is compatible with all mobile devices and super intuitive.CORKWATCH also has a searchable database and map that allows you to find a drop off location for corks in your area.  Most Whole Foods will also accept real will Firefly restaurant in DC (and you can just drop them off don't have to stay for a meal - though you should as the food is sustainably sourced and fab!)  For more information as to why you should opt for wines with cork stoppers, check out the WWF Report, "Cork Screwed?"