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No Styrofoam here in Great Barrington

I just wrote this embarrassing message to my neighborhood email list. I have lived in Great Barrington since 1992 and can't believe I've never heard anyone mention a ban on Styrofoam, but I can't remember seeing any Styrofoam around either. There was a storm of protest when cigarettes were banned in restaurants and I remember that clearly enough - and I remember all the packets of cigarettes I saw, with people's hands resting lightly on top, when I went into a place frequented by old-timers. Here's what I wrote to [...]

November 15th, 2012|Categories: Home Ecology|Tags: , , |

Simmons soaps

I've never been big on product recommendations, not because I don't like some products a lot but because I know I'm no expert on organic baby food or toilet paper. I tend more towards broad principles, because they're easier to remember. Choose small things. Choose light things (concentrated products without much water, for example). But when I find myself going back to the same small northern California company to stock up on soap, for what must be 10 years now, it does seem time to recommend them. Especially since they [...]

March 27th, 2008|Categories: Uncategorized|Tags: |

Hop Stop

Just as there are reasons we grab a fast-food meal instead of making lentil soup or a vegetable stir-fry, there are reasons we jump into the car instead of using public transport. Every life choice requires us to balance a variety of demands, desires, and practical limitations. That's why those of us promoting change need to lower the barriers to entry. We shouldn't talk as if we require total conversion to the cause, but make it clear that we welcome and appreciate everything that's done to reduce carbon emissions, for [...]

April 4th, 2006|Categories: Oddments|Tags: , |

Urban skywatching!

I was at my niece's wedding last month, in a museum courtyard in Florida under a beautiful evening sky. A fine crescent moon rose behind the palm trees, with a bright star near it. Venus, I thought, vaguely remembering the the first star in the sky is a planet. I wondered, though, and asked around. No one knew more than I did--and that was all too little. Here is a great site for anyone who wants to be more attuned to the natural world: Urban Skywatching by Bob Parvin

December 13th, 2005|Categories: Uncategorized|Tags: |

Cradle to Cradle Design

I'm in the process of gathering lots of new content for this blog and website, because I can see that in light of recent events we'll all be thinking much more about both energy conservation and our relationship with the natural world (though at this stage the hard-hit people in Lousiana and Mississippi aren't thinking like that, and my heart gos out to them). In the meantime, I want to recommend some of the most intriguing thinking around, when it comes to designing products and processes to put us in [...]

September 7th, 2005|Categories: Oddments|Tags: |