Comonsense meets water scarcity – let’s recycle!

CA Drought, Sierra Nevada reservoir, photo by BitHead, flickr

A reservoir in the Sierra Nevada’s shows the effects of drought. Photo by BitHead, from flickr

I’ve often thought that we consumers waste inordinate amounts of water everyday. Now that California has finally declared a drought, it’s time to wake up and smell the coffee so to speak.

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Guardedly optimistic progress in obesity in children

Childhood obesity for babies 2As a journalist, I’m skeptical when I read about the latest report showing remarkable progress or “breakthrough results”. All too often the test group is much too small to really demonstrate large sweeping results.

So it’s with a somewhat jaded view that I read the news that there’s been a large drop in childhood obesity.

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Rock salt in short supply – time for more eco-friendly alternatives?

Snowstorm in the NortheastWith the Northeast being slammed this winter with some seriously severe snow and ice storms, the availability of rock salt is in short supply. After three winter storms in one week, states like Connecticut, Pennsylvania, New York and New Jersey find themselves faced with critical supplies like rock salt running low.

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The Challenge of Finding GMO-free Pet Food

Editor’s Note:  I write for a variety of online venues. Although the references in this article are for a website based in northern California,  I think you’ll agree that the issue are bigger than geography.

Photo by Margarita Perisco, courtesy of flickr

Photo by Margarita Perisco, courtesy of flickr

As someone committed to living a green lifestyle, it’s natural for me to want my dog to be on the green journey with me. I’ve ditched containers with BPA and chemical-filled pet products and I use top quality “green” laundry detergent. But when it comes to finding pet food or dog treats that are GMO-free, that’s a bigger challenge.

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A new organic oasis at SFO

Open only two weeks, Dogpatch Caffe is a surprising discovery at San Francisco’s newest terminal.

On a recent trip,, I had the good fortune to fly into SFO’s new terminal. Spacious and well lit, at late evening, many of the retail stores and dining establishments were already closed. But like a bright beacon, I suddenly spied organic fresh food ahead.

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Judge strikes down law allowing Keystone XL in Nebraska

Keystone XL pipeline

photo by Michael S. Williamson, courtesy of the Washington Post

A Nebraska judge ruled Wednesday that the state violated its constitution when it allowed the governor to approve the route of the controversial Keystone XL pipeline, a decision that could significantly delay the $5.3 billion project.

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Sustainable Foods Summit – a call for greater collaboration

Sustainable Foods Summit updated banner

The recent 2014 Sustainable Foods Summit that this writer attended in San Francisco was a remarkable and engaging two days. Over 160 senior executives debated key sustainability issues affecting the North American food industry. Ethical sourcing & biodiversity impacts, the role of sustainability metrics, and food ingredients for sustainability were some of the major themes covered.

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Blackfish – a distressing indictment of SeaWorld’s inhumane treatment of whales

Blackfish film logoJust finished viewing Blackfish, the sobering documentary revealing the inhumane treatment of killer whales by the powers that be of SeaWorld and similar venues.

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Plant-based water bottle helps fight deforestation and plastic pollution

Treeson Water Bottle PrototypeThere are a lot of water bottling companies out there, and a lot of so-called “green” water and water bottles. I have to admit I’m a bit skeptical when I hear about yet another one. But I did a bit of checking and there’s one that’s caught my eye and imagination.

There’s a new Kickstarter campaign for Treeson water that’s piqued my interest.

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Too many green labels equal confusion for consumers

There are hundreds of "green" labels out there, providing plenty of confusion for consumers

There are hundreds of “green” labels out there, providing plenty of confusion for consumers

While participating in the recent Sustainable Foods Summit in San Francisco, I browsed the trade show outside the event. One of the first booths I encountered was for Control Union Certification, which is an independent inspection and certification body. In my conversation with their representative, I came across a startling fact.

There are literally hundreds of certification programs out there. It’s a veritable morass of information that is impossible for consumers – and even somewhat educated journalists – to keep up with, much less to understand!

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