February 4, 2009

The Green Year: 365 Small Things You Can do to Make a Big Difference

thegreenyear.jpg The Green Year: 365 Small Things You Can Do to Make a Big Difference uses the calendar year to organize simple activities anyone can do to help stop climate change. The bite size tips are assigned to each day of the year, so one is never at a loss as to what one can do that day for the earth. The book also features:
•The "why" behind each activity--what makes it good for the environment and the reader? •A quick "how-to" for any activity that requires it •Room for readers to write in their own creative Alternatives •Helpful illustrations
Ideas range from in May visiting a garden center to research drought-tolerant plants to in August switching to eco-friendly dental floss. With Valentine's Day approaching, The Green Year: 365 Small Things You Can Do to Make a Big Difference offers the following advice:
Surprise your Valentine with a candlelight dinner. Turning out the lights isn't just romantic, it saves energy. To make the evening more eco-friendly, opt for soy candles over candles made from paraffin. Soy candles are made from natural ingredients, last longer than paraffin candles, and reduce the amount of soot released into the air by 90 percent.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

August 4, 2008

Sierra Club Cycling Book Review: Into Thick Air

IntoThickAircover.gif Playing on the title of Jon Krakauer's personal account of the disaster on Mt. Everest titled Into Thin Air, Jim Malusa has written Into Thick Air about cycling alone to the lowest points of six continents. Over six years, Malusa went on a series of "anti-expeditions" to the "anti-summits" with his bike and beer kept cold by swaddling it in his sleeping bag.

Malusa's writing style is easy to read and enjoyable, and he takes us to parts of the world we may never travel to. His botany background enables him to describe the landscape from Lake Eyre in Australia to Death Valley.  In Africa, Malusa learns there are only 12 lawyers in all of Djibouti, where disputes are brought to elders rather than lawyers. One of my favorite writers Barbara Kingsolver said about Malusa, "I've followed all of Jim's amazing and hilarious journeys, and I am happy to claim him as one of my favorite writers." With an endorsement like that, you are sure to enjoy Into Thick Air.

Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

July 14, 2008

Swamp Thing - Really Natural Comic Characters

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Really natural comic book characters are hard to find, but then again there's always been The Swamp Thing. Yep - he's an eco-friendly fictional character created by Len Wein and Berni Wrightson for DC Comics and featured in a long-running horror-fantasy comic book series of the same name. The character is a humanoid mass of vegetable matter who fights to protect his swamp home, the environment in general, and humanity from various supernatural or terrorist threats.

Why are we featuring a eco-friendly comic book character? For one - we love The Swamp Thing, and next week it's Comic Con. We think the timing is perfect for a big Swamp Thing come back. We hear he's one of Del Toro's favorite characters , and maybe he'll make a Swamp Thing movie next instead of Hellboy III.

We hope to find some more really natural comic book characters as well this week at Comic Con. Do you know of more? Sound off in the comments and let us know

More at Swamp Thing - Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia

Blogpire Productions at Permalink social bookmarking

July 9, 2008

Eco Books for Kids: The Green Eaters: A Dream Comes True

The Green Eaters The Green Eaters: A Dream Comes True is simple, rhyming book for children about organic farming by the founder of Chapter One Organics, Jennifer Murphy. This sweet book begins with unhappy farm animals on a conventional farm who soon move to an organic one. Once they move onto the healthier farm, the animals are better cared for, allowed to graze instead of eat bagged grain, and allowed to roam free.
Becoming The Green Eaters is their dream come true, Never again will they be made to feel blue! The Green Eaters live the organic, fresh and natural way, They feel good, they look good, and YES they want to stay!
The Green Eaters: A Dream Comes True is printed using solar and wind power, and it is made from a minimum of 30% recycled paper!
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 28, 2008

Use Your Spending Power to Save the Earth

big green purse.jpg Big Green Purse, written by Diane MacEarchern, is a great resource for women wishing to shop greener. By changing our spending habits, Diane believes we can create a "cleaner, greener world", and I agree.
It's simple, but potentially revolutionary. When we buy green products, we encourage manufacturers to reduce pollution, save energy and water, use less packaging, and protect natural areas like rain forests.  With this book, women everywhere can learn how to shop smart and change the world.
The book begins by recapping environmental problems and discusses principles for green shopping and avoiding greenwashing. The majority of the book then discusses specific ways you can shift your spending on common commodities to positively impact the environment.
  • Go Green-simple suggestions of immediate, green lifestyle changes
  • Make the shift-eco-friendly product recommendations
  • Ecocheap-ways to save money and shop green
  • Shop talk-suggestions for encouraging local merchants to carry more green goods
  • Green at work-how to make your work place more eco-friendly
  • Thumbs up-a rating for products, services, and practices that really live up to their green claims
  • Thumbs down-greenwashing
  • In my house-a green reality check for your home
The power of the purse or wallet cannot be denied, as companies respond to what people spend money on. This is already evident by the increase of organically grown products available in today's market. Consumer spending power is a powerful force in a capitalist society.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

April 9, 2008

Michael Recycle to the Rescue

513pqaSvrpL._SL500_AA240_.jpg Sure, "Michael, recycle!" could be a command, but in the children's book Michael Recycle, he is a super-green hero. Written by Ellie Bethel and illustrated by Alexander Colombo, this book takes readers on a rhyming adventure to save a town where garbage piled up and people were "lazy". Despite his zany colander cap, Michael tells the people they must recycle, and they listen to his advice.
They recycled their paper,
Their plastic and cans,
And even old junk
 Like used pots and pans!
They also began The "Be Greener Campaign."
 They grew their own kumquats
And saved up the rain.
The book ends with several simple "Michael Recycle's Go Green Tips" for children to implement. Michael Recycle does not address the complexities of climate change, like The Down-to-Earth Guide to Global Warming; however, children will enjoy the rhyming text and illustrations.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

March 10, 2008

The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook

51NEX8AMSFL._SS500_.jpg The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook is the quintessential cookbook for vegans and vegetarians, similar to Betty Crocker for those just learning to cook. This cookbook is loaded with basic recipes from sloppy joes to cinnamon rolls.  You can learn to make your own seitan and soymilk in this cookbook filled with basic recipes, from the quick to the more complicated.   My copy of The New Farm Vegetarian Cookbook is so torn and tattered that is held together with a rubber band now. The Farm is an intentional community in Tennessee, famous for their midwives.
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

February 18, 2008

Book Review: Whole World

world 1.jpg Whole World by Christopher Corr and Fred Penner is a new children's book based upon the gospel spiritual originally sung by African American pianist and composer Margaret Bonds (1913-1972). You probably sang this song in childhood, chanting aloud, "She's got the sun and the moon in her hands...She's got the whole world in her hands!" Carr and Penner's version of this classic song, that embraces the world as a whole, ends with an environmental message. Readers are given brief descriptions of the geography of the different areas featured in the verses of the song, followed by some "Ways to Reduce Global Warming":
Eat less meat. Forests of trees that reduce carbon dioxide in the air are cut down to make way for cows that will be used for food.
The artwork is delightful in Whole World, and it comes with an audio cd. One track on the cd includes vocals of "Whole World", and another is a dub version for your sing along enjoyment. Personally, I have heard better versions of the song than on the cd; however, I do enjoy children's books based on songs, especially if there is a green message! Oh yea, Whole World is printed on "ancient-forest friendly" paper, and 10 percent of net sales go to conservation organizations!
Jennifer Lance at Permalink social bookmarking

November 7, 2007

7 Tips to Reduce Carbon Footprint: Grist Founder on Today

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And speaking of Grist, founder Chip Giller (a former classmate of mine!) was interviewed on Today earlier this week and offered viewers seven tips to reduce their carbon emissions by 10% in one week. Among the tips:

- Wash your clothes in cold water
- Eat no meat one day a week
- Lower the heat in your house by two degrees
- Unplug appliances when they're not in use.

The tips come from Grist's new book Wake Up and Smell the Planet: The Non-Pompous, Non-Preachy Grist Guide to Greening Your Day.

Chip took some flack on the Grist message boards for focusing on baby steps instead of recommending radical changes to our culture of consumption. Personally, though, I think he'll catch more flies with honey, and that the impact created by these small changes would be pretty significant if they were implemented by a big enough audience.

Check out the full Chip Giller interview on Today. Buy Wake Up and Smell the Planet.

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

November 6, 2007

Grist Interview with Michael Pollan

Pollan-In-Defense.jpgMichael Pollan, author of The Omnivore's Dilemma, has a new book coming out in January. According to Pollan, In Defense of Food: An Eater's Manifesto grew out of frequent questions he got from readers of Omnivore's Dilemma:

Now that you've looked into the heart of the food system and been into the belly of the beast, how should I eat, and what should I buy, and if I'm concerned about health, what should I be eating? I decided I would see what kind of very practical answers I could give people.
ArrowContinue reading: "Grist Interview with Michael Pollan"

Jess Brooks at Permalink social bookmarking

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