Escape Into Nature On Your Next Trip (or Close to Home)

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Time away from the daily grind helps to keep us sane and motivated, and nothing rejuvenates our inner batteries like the peaceful experience of being fully immersed in nature.

Unfortunately, for city dwellers in particular, that can be a difficult outlet to find. Granted, watching a squirrel bury nuts for the winter or a beetle making its way across the bark of a tree can be a calming experience, possible in a backyard or in the midst of a city park. But just as Thoreau removed himself completely to Walden Pond to truly surround himself within the natural world, there’s something to be said for getting away from civilization altogether….

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Design Student Creates Jewelry to Aid Gulf Wildlife

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Like nearly everyone who sees the damage its caused, Nadilyn Beáto is upset about the oil disaster in the Gulf of Mexico. But she isn’t just complaining, she’s doing something about it. A junior at Parsons – The New School for Design in Brooklyn, New York, Beáto has recently begun designing, making, and selling fashion jewelry to benefit the wildlife affected by the vast oil leak.

Beáto’s jewelry depicts some of the animals that she wants to save: sea turtles, orcas, dolphins, American oyster catchers, black skimmers, and more. She uses Super Sculpey to create her jewelry pieces, then paints them with nontoxic paints. Her creations include necklaces, charm bracelets, and earrings. Each individual piece of jewelry takes her about an hour and a half to make.

The turtles sell for $15 in Beáto’s Etsy store, with $10 donated to the Gulf Coast Response team at the Environmental Defense Fund. Her goal is to create and sell 150 pieces of jewelry, raising $1,500 for the rescue and rehabilitation of the wildlife in the Gulf.

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Brooklyn Free School Plans Service Learning Project in Tanzania

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Imagine you’re attending a public school where you can determine what you will study based on your interests. Imagine planning a trip that you will take with your classmates, teachers, and parent volunteers half a world away. Now imagine that you are only six years old.

Students at the Brooklyn Free School in Clinton Hill (Brooklyn), New York, are experiencing a very different kind of education — one that teaches independence and responsibility, as well as academics, art, and all other subjects. In a few weeks, 11 students, ages 6 to 17, and 13 adults will be traveling to Tanzania on a remarkable service learning field trip — one that the students helped to plan and fund….

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Farm to Table’s 100-Mile Menu Coming Soon to NYC

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Orchestrated by Great Performances, Farm To Table conducts the 100-Mile Menu, bringing fresh, seasonal, local foods from New York State farms within reach of New York City slickers — coming soon…

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Good Beer at BAM Fundraiser Is Something to Savor

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The Good Beer at BAM fundraiser presented by Edible Brooklyn magazine on July 29 combined a great crowd, amazing beer, and exciting food. Over the course of the evening, I sampled more than 20 varieties of artisan ale by brewers from all over Brooklyn and New York State. Brewmasters presented everything from clean, crisp, and simple pale ales to richly complex varieties. And, of course, the chefs on hand pushed the envelope of American culinary creativity with pairings that defied convention and expectation…

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The New Deal Supper Club – A Moveable Feast

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The New Deal Supper Club on July 15th was sweeter than a song.

This time, the ladies of Rabbit Mafia and Sweet Potato took their awesomely sophisticated show on the road to Brooklyn’s hinterlands (I mean, Williamsburg). The trip to BRIDGET Tasting Room felt like an updated Mission Impossible scene. Only this time, the instrumentals were the introductory bars to the infamous 1987 hit, Smooth Criminal…

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The New Deal – A Progressive Supper Club

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Unlike Franklin Roosevelt’s New Deal, the only thing complex about this supper club are the flavors of Rabbit Mafia and Sweet Potato’s dishes.

The New Deal Supper Club, hosted by Chef Sarah Pace of Rabbit Mafia, featured features meals by the talented Suzanne Barr, chef and creator of Sweet Potato Bakery. The chefs have teamed up with marketer Kizzy Kae to provide the New York area with an exquisite dining experience that moves from one exciting venue to another…

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GE Requests Stimulus Funds for Advanced Batteries – and Green Collar Jobs

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General Electric’s proposed $100 million battery manufacturing facility was probably just the kind of project President Obama had in mind when the American Recovery and Reinvestment Act of 2009 (Recovery Act) passed in February.

If funded, GE’s sodium-battery producing facility will create 350 new green-collar jobs. The facility is to be built at a still-to-be-determined location in upstate New York. These batteries will power hybrid locomotives, mining trucks, and tugboats. They will also provide back-up power for stationary applications like telecom, which needs an uninterrupted power supply…

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Beverage Container Laws Expanding in Several States

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When bottled water first appeared on product shelves, I initially thought it was a waste of money. I held off for a long time. Eventually, like many of you, I saw the relatively small investment as a fair exchange for the convenience of portability. It was an attractive lure. I bit. And I bought. And bought. And bought.

Now that I’m deeply steeped in environmental issues, I have come to understand the disaster of bottled water. Aside from questions about the quality of the water and the safety of the plastic bottles themselves — significant issues, for sure — there’s the problem of waste. Millions of plastic water bottles get tossed in our waterways, lie smashed on our roads, litter our green spaces, or end up in our landfills. In the best-case scenario, they get recycled into other products.

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Praise the Lord and Green the Roof

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Perhaps you won’t be surprised to hear about a religious order of nuns that grows its own vegetables and cares for the environment. But nuns sharing a Zip car? Nuns wearing organic cotton habits? And nuns living under a green roof in New York City? Joseph Huff Hannon sent us this fascinating post about a group of green-living nuns who are serving their fellow humans and the planet by living Earth Wise, Money Smart.

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Landmark National Children’s Study Launches in US

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The National Children’s Study is the largest study of children’s health that’s ever been undertaken in this country. It’s what we call a prospective epidemiologic study, which means it’s going to enroll moms very early in pregnancy and follow the children out to at least age 21.

The goal of the study is to identify factors in the environment that cause disease in children, like autism and childhood cancer, attention deficit disorder, asthma, diabetes, birth defects, prematurity, and low birth weight.

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My 5: Dr. Philip Landrigan, Mount Sinai Medical Center

January 14, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog, Front Page, My 5, New York, Scientists

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Blue Planet Green Living asked Dr. Philip Landrigan, one of the key proponents of the National Children’s Study and a professor at Mount Sinai Medical School, “What are the five most important things that we can do to save the planet?”

DR. LANDRIGAN:
* I would say it really comes down to taking deliberate, conscious steps to protect children from toxic environmental exposures in early life. For example, never sand down old paint during pregnancy because of the risk of lead….

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My 5: Ron Gonen, Recycle Bank

January 1, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog, Front Page, My 5, New York

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Blue Planet Green Living asked Ron Gonan, CEO of RecycleBank, “What are the five most important things we can do to save the planet?”

RON GONEN:

These are in no order:

* Recycle.

* Use public transportation.

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Rewards for Recycling

December 16, 2008 by  
Filed under Blog, Ecopreneurs, Front Page, Landfill, New York, Recycling

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I know your kind. You recycle. You care about the planet. You might even be a tree hugger. You don’t want to dump things in the landfill if there’s a way to extend their lives for another go. But not everyone can be bothered. If the environmental mess we’re in isn’t enough to motivate them, what will? That’s one of the questions Ron Gonen had to figure out while developing the business model for his innovative, young company, RecycleBank.

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