1. Keep Your Barbecue or Picnic Green

    Posted on May 31, 2010 by The Modern Gal

    It’s Memorial Day, the unofficial start of summer, which means lots of people will be breaking out the picnic baskets and firing up the grills for the next few months. Eating outdoors seems like a more natural way to enjoy our food, but it also takes a few extra steps to stay eco-friendly. Here are some reminders of how to enjoy your summer barbecues and picnics without leaving a larger footprint.
    Read more…

  2. PawSafe Cleaners

    Posted on May 28, 2010 by Allie


    It’s no secret that I’m obsessed with the health and safety of my pets, but goodness they are messy!  While Argo and Stella do a fantastic job of making nose smudges on the windows, muddy footprints on the floors (and sometimes counters!) and leaving their gunky toys all over the place, they don’t do a good job of cleaning up.  And they lick EVERYTHING, so using harsh chemicals to clean up after them isn’t an option. Read more…

  3. April is the cruellest month.

    Posted on May 27, 2010 by A Free Man


    This winter, there was a meme amongst the talk radio/climate change denier community that the unusually high levels of snowfall in the eastern United States ‘proved’ that climate change was a hoax perpetrated on innocent capitalists by scientists and their Marxist agenda. Hopefully, most people realized that this was a bogus argument. But if there’s any doubt the United States’ National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration has come up with a couple of pretty pictures to illustrate just what’s happening to temperatures at a global level. Read more…

  4. Pre Game Texturizing Spray

    Posted on May 26, 2010 by Courtney

    This is me, and more importantly (for the purposes of this post, at least), this is what my hair looks like on most days.


    Long, straight, fine, flat, kinda boring. You can see why I’m often on the lookout for some products to add a little life to it.

    That’s why I was so happy to receive a sample of Pre Game Texturizing Spray, a natural, eco-friendly spray designed to add some beachy texture to your hair for that sexy tousled look. Pre Game is free of parabens, alcohol, petrochemicals and propellants, and it’s cruelty-free. Read more…

  5. What’s Going On

    Posted on May 25, 2010 by Allie


    Scientific American discusses a new proposal to allow whaling quotas, reportedly, in the interest of saving whales.

    The Good Human talks about Toxic America.

    Inhabitat has 7 eco-friendlier sandals for summer.

    Condo Blues makes a composter out of a storage tub.

    Ecorazzi reports that Jeremy Irons thinks we need to lower our standard of living.

    Tiny Choices tells us why Fair Trade chocolate is so important.

    Jacket Copy talks about Penguin (my publisher’s parent company) and Nature Conservancy’s celebration of 75 years of Penguin books and the campaign to plant a billion trees.

    Chiots Run is propagating plants from stem cuttings.

  6. TED Talk: Being a Weekday Vegetarian

    Posted on May 24, 2010 by Courtney

    Here at The Greenists, we don’t judge people for eating meat — but we can’t ignore the fact that a vegetarian diet is much less taxing on the planet than a carnivorous one. One of my friends recently saw this TED Talk video, and it inspired him to become a weekday vegetarian — someone who goes vegetarian during the week and saves the meat for the weekends. If you’re looking to reduce the amount of meat in your diet, this is a great way to do it without going cold turkey (no pun intended).

    Do you eat meat for every meal? Have you made an effort to cut down? How did you do it?

  7. Dr. Dandelion Lip Rescue

    Posted on May 21, 2010 by Allie


    Lady slipped a tube of Dr. Dandelion Lip Rescue in the birthday care package she sent me this year, and it is one of my all time favorites.  I’d never heard of Dr. Dandelion before, but Lady has a gift for picking the very best products, and I was excited to see the super simple ingredient list:

    Organic sunflower oil, beeswax, castor oil, peppermint essential oil.

    It stays solid, but melts easily on lips, making it a fantastic choice for really chapped lips, when dragging a more solid lip balm across your mouth might encourage cracking.  And unlike some of the natural lip balms I’ve tried (and declined to write about) there’s no grit to it.  It feels completely smooth on my lips.  The peppermint oil leaves a nice tingly feeling.   Read more…

  8. To Air Is Human

    Posted on May 20, 2010 by Mickey

    fan 032

    While walking through our apartment complex this morning coming back from a meeting, I made a point of counting all the open windows I saw. It was easy: zero. And no, I wasn’t casing the joint, making notes about which units contained flat-screen TVs and would be easiest to break into (for which reason I’ll exclude all the bottom-floor dwellers from the following discussion.) My interest instead was a result of the perfect open-window weather, 70 and sunny. This is the time of year in this part of the country to air things out, after the pollen has fallen and before the melting heat of summer sets in. Nighttime temperatures have been in the 60s, with daytime highs in the low 80s, and there’s no better time to save some money on your utility bill, which is why it irks me a bit to hear the air conditioners rattling away as I type this. Read more…

  9. Should We Be Boycotting BP?

    Posted on May 19, 2010 by Courtney

    Energy in the sky

    I’ve seen a few petitions and Facebook groups and the like encouraging me to boycott BP gas stations until the oil leak in the Gulf is plugged. I understand the thinking behind this — I’m pretty outraged about the spill too, and I’m certainly not happy with the BP executives and the fact that the company was not prepared to handle this kind of emergency.

    But if you drive a car, you have to get gas from somewhere. While no oil company has a perfect record when it comes to caring for the environment, there are some companies that are better than others. It pains me to say it right now, but according to several sources, you could do a lot worse than BP at the gas pump.

    The Sierra Club, Greenopia, and Better World Handbook each have compiled “pick your poison” lists that compare several chains of gas stations and their pros and cons from an environmental perspective. All three list BP as one of the least offending oil companies, citing its support of the Kyoto Protocol to cap greenhouse gas emissions, its pledge to invest $8 billion over 10 years to develop alternative energy sources, and its successful reduction of its own CO2 emissions. The only other company that received higher marks was Sunoco.

    No one’s denying that this oil spill puts a huge black mark on BP’s report card. Of course it does. But when I go to fill up my car, I still feel better about giving my money to BP or Sunoco than, say, ExxonMobil, which has the worst scores on every list.

    And of course, the best way to be green is to conserve gas as much as possible. Keep your windows closed when you’re driving on the highway, and bundle your errands whenever possible instead of making multiple trips. If you’re in the market for a new car, consider a hybrid. Voting with your dollars is often the best course of action.

  10. Stone Wall Workshop

    Posted on May 18, 2010 by Allie

    moon gate back

    I am always amazed by what can be created with patience, talent, skill, and the simplest of materials. Chuck Eblacker creates dry stone wall structures using what already exists in nature: stone, and nothing more. No mortar is used in the creation of a dry stone wall.

    From an article by Building Green:
    “Cement production is one of the most energy intensive of all industrial manufacturing processes. Including direct fuel use for mining and transporting raw materials, cement production takes about six million Btus for every ton of cement. The industry’s heavy reliance on coal leads to especially high emission levels of CO 2, nitrous oxide, and sulphur, among other pollutants. A sizeable portion of the electricity used is also generated from coal.”

    And, according to the article the chemical process that occurs in Portland cement is “responsible for roughly 1/2 ton of CO 2 per ton of cement.”

    So, creating stone walls without cement is a markedly greener practice. It’s also an art form. Dry stone walling is said to be the world’s oldest craft. There are only a handful of people in the United States certified to build dry stone walls.  If properly built, the way in which the stones are laid creates gravity and friction enough to create a wall that can stand for 100 years or more. Read more…

Tip of the Day

If It Doesn’t Smell, Don’t Wash It


According to Real Simple, if every American made an effort to launder less — cutting out just one load of laundry a week per household — we’d save enough water to fill seven million swimming pools each year.

So if it looks clean, and it smells clean, call it clean and wear it again. Consider hanging worn clothes out on your clothesline to freshen them up between wearings.

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