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Friday, November 30, 2012

Grace Potter at House of Blues this Weekend

There are many reasons to love Grace Potter in the Nocturnals besides their incredible and original music. For one, Grace's stage style is simply iconic (see below). Secondly, the band started at my alma mater! And thirdly, they are devoted to promoting local consumption and small businesses. The Vermont band has partnered with Cabot Creamery and other local businesses as a way to bolster the local food movement. She has even been known to throw locally produced goodies into the audience! 

Below is a video that explains the band's commitment to going local. If you don't have time to watch the whole thing (its about 10 minutes), just start about 7 minutes in, and you'll get the best segment. 


I am super-excited to be seeing Grace Potter and the Nocturnals tomorrow night at Boston's House of Blues! Going green, rocker style.




Thursday, November 29, 2012

Review: Clear Scalp & Hair Therapy Shampoo

image courtesy of amazon.com

Pros                                                                    Cons            
-widely available                                                  -rated 4 on skindeep  (moderate hazard)
-good price (under $5)                                         -contains artificial fragrance
-contains natural oils (coconut, almond, etc.)         -contains formaldehyde
-cleans & conditions effectively                            -no info on policies re envit/social responsibility

Conclusion: Though this shampoo does a great job cleaning hair, it is certainly not an eco-friendly product. It contains a few potentially hazardous ingredients and the company doesn't seem to have a regard for environmental packaging or other product line concerns. The price is tempting, but I will probably pay the extra few bucks to get a safer and more responsible product next time. 

Wednesday, November 28, 2012

World Climate Summit 2012: The Basics


This week leaders from around the world are gathering in Doha, Qatar for the World Climate Summit 2012. The summit is not merely a gathering of political leaders, but also business leaders, NGOs, financiers, and students. The goal is to develop global strategies that improve quality of life, create opportunities for prosperity, and to achieve both in a way that addresses threats posed by climate change. These strategies are designed through three avenues during the summit:


  • Plenary Sessions – World class sessions featuring high-level private and public thought-leader from global business, finance, government and institutions will address substantial climate business issues and major climate solutions that possess the biggest potential for profitability.
  • Networking – delegates and speakers will have plenty of time to interact, exchange ideas, learn from each other and collaborate with one another during purpose-built networking sessions at breakfasts, lunches and breaks.
  • Media – Journalists from globally leading media outlets will attend and participate in the Summit through an established ‘media centre’ and during plenary sessions.

Tuesday, November 27, 2012

Celebrate the Holidays by Giving Green with The Nature Conservancy

This just in from our friends at the Nature Conservancy:

BOSTON, MA — Tired of giving gifts you know people will never use?  This year, skip the shopping and give gifts that do more than decorate a shelf or hang in a closet.  Join The Nature Conservancy and give green!

Not only are green gifts meaningful and responsible, but you’ll avoid the worst part of the holidays: Long lines at the shopping mall, endless circles around the parking lot for a spot, and running out of wrapping paper on Christmas Eve.  Green gifts will not only delight and excite, but they help conserve the lands and waters we love!

Consider breaking the cycle this year.  Below are some ideas for green gifts:

·         Give education - Sponsor a LEAF intern!  Last summer, The Nature Conservancy partnered with the Boston Green Academy to provide conservation internships to local students.  Six students were selected for paid summer internships through the national Leaders in Environmental Action for the Future (LEAF) program and placed in the Berkshires and Martha’s VineyardRead about their experiences.  Through the LEAF program, urban youth gain direct hands-on environmental stewardship experience, work with mentors and scientists, and a summer immersed in nature.  Your gift of $60 could pay a LEAF intern’s stipend for a day.

·         Give Experience – Experience gifts are great for that person who has everything, and they’re a fantastic way to support local businesses.  Experiences like a language class or a gift certificate to your local yoga studio are gifts that will continue to give long after the holidays have passed!  Have a fellow nature lover on your list this year? Check out our upcoming events to find hikes and lectures throughout Massachusetts that you can attend together!

·         Give a Gift Membership – You can give a green gift they will love! Delight friends and family and share your interest for environmental conservation with this perfect gift. Your gift recipient will receive a year's worth of our quarterly, award-winning Nature Conservancy magazine and will be able to enjoy your gift all-year longLearn more about what you get with a membership.

·         Give a Handmade Gift – Chances are, the gifts your family members have saved and cherished over the years are the ones you made yourself as a child.  Surprise them by doing it again!  Chose a simple craft, like cloth napkins or handmade cards, and make one for everyone on your list.  Turning your annual shopping day to your annual crafting day is not only more personal, it’s also lighter on the packaging waste that goes along with most gifts.  Already into DIY?  Share your ideas with us!

·         Give Conservation – There are many ways to give conservation through The Nature Conservancy’s Green Gift GuideProtect what you care about most.  With the Conservancy’s Adopt an Acre program, you can conserve lands and waters in East Africa, Brazil, Australia, Costa Rica, the United States and even coral reefs!


The Nature Conservancy is the leading conservation organization working around the world to conserve the lands and waters on which all life depends. The Conservancy and its more than 1 million members have protected nearly 120 million acres worldwide. Visit The Nature Conservancy on the Web at www.nature.org/mass

Monday, November 26, 2012

Cyber Monday Discount Codes & Tips


Finish all your shopping from home by participating in Cyber Monday (TODAY!).
Shopping online is a great way to reduce your carbon footprint, and find exactly what you want without the added stress of the crowds.

Where to find the best deals:
-Boston.com's list of 40+ checkout codes and sales
-Rue La La Cyberthon
-Gilt Free Fall
MY FAV: Kate Spade Surprise Cyber Sale

Where to find the most eco deals:
-Ethical Ocean
-Ecolissa
-Fashioning Change
-Nau (get 25% an order of 2 or more items with code: 2FOR25

Tuesday, November 20, 2012

Why Cyber Monday is Greener than Black Friday

Cyber Monday is the Monday after Thanksgiving during which online retailers have huge sales. The online sales are a great alternative to the crowded chaos that is Black Friday. Plus, Cyber Monday is more eco-friendly. Here's why:

-In store purchases account for 15x the amount of GHG emissions caused by online purchases. (data from 2010).

-When shopping online it is easier to compare company values and purchase from a socially and environmentally ethical company.

-No paper coupons needed.

-Easy to use promo codes from twitter and other social media sites. 

Monday, November 19, 2012

Review: Bio-Oil Scar Treatment

Pros                                                           Cons                                    
-Easy to use bottle                                      -Rated a 7 on the SkinDeep database (high hazard!)
-Contains lavender oil                                  -Contains artificial fragrance and retinyl acetate
-No parabens or palm oil                             -Marketing targets pregnant women
-Recyclable packaging                                 -No information regarding animal testing or green policies

Conclusion: This is a prime example of tricky product names. Just because the word "bio" is in the title does not mean that the product is green, healthy, or natural in any way. While Bio-Oil is paraben free and somewhat effective, its ingredient list contains some concerning substances. Small doses of artificial fragrance or retinyl acetate (which are both considered a high health hazard by the Environmental Working Group) may not do much harm, but the fact that this product is marketed towards pregnant women is worrisome. 

Thursday, November 15, 2012

The Skin Deep Database is Back!

Good news makeup lovers, the Environmental Working Group's Skin Deep Database, which lists health, environmental, and labor concerns of thousands of products, is back in action. The new site looks great, and is more complete than the old one - so I look forward to reading more updated information.

Get ready for lots of beauty reviews over the next few weeks!

Wednesday, November 14, 2012

Twenty-Six

Its my birthday! In lieu of cards or well-wishes, just act extra green today!

Tuesday, November 13, 2012

Natural Gas, Old & New in Pennsylvania

Fracking is a hot topic in the energy field. Both presidential candidates supported fracking as it will create jobs and potentially lower energy costs. However, this comes with some great environmental risks.

I highly recommend reading/listening to this great article from NPR on how abandoned gas wells from the 1800s are creating danger as fracking ramps up in the state.

Shell burned off gas from June through August at the Morse well pad in Bradford County, Pa., to prevent natural gas from leaking to the surface after one of its drilling sites intersected an abandoned gas well.
image courtesy of NPR.org

Thursday, November 8, 2012

America Recycles Day is a Week Away!


Since 1997, people across the United States have celebrated America Recycles Day to motivate and educate communities about recycling and reducing waste. This year, America Recycles Day takes place November 15! Throughout the country, communities will participate in events and activities to inspire recycling and keep waste out of landfills.

Many companies and townships are hosting special events to promote recycling next week:

Evergreen Packaging has some interesting tips on how to recycle or reuse paper cartons: www.recyclecartons.com and more craft and recycling tips, check out: www.choosecartons.com

Boston Public Works is hosting a hazardous waste collection in West Roxbury from 9am - 2pm: http://www.cityofboston.gov/recycle 

And Salem is hosting a textiles drive on November 17th. http://salem.com/recycling

To learn about recycling events near where you live, visit: http://americarecyclesday.org

Wednesday, November 7, 2012

Green Reading

While visiting my alma mater for homecoming last weekend, I was thrilled to find a green reading section in the book store! I was definitely flipping pages and making notes of titles for quite a while. I hope this is a trend at many schools. See anything you recognize or have any green book suggestions?


Tuesday, November 6, 2012

Monday, November 5, 2012

Green Find: The Skinny Pancake

I try to eat green and local even when I'm traveling. This weekend, a few friends and I took a roadtrip, and stopped in a very eco-conscious restaurant in Burlington, VT called The Skinny Pancake. It was delish! I had the local butternut squash and chevre spinach crepe - I highly recommend it!