Amy Linn

Amy Linn is a freelance writer and editor based in Missoula, Mont.

A recent grad follows her passions and finds a green job she digs

All college students know the feeling — that squeaky little hamster wheel of doubt about life post-diploma. What if I can’t find a job? What if I can’t find a job I like? What if I can’t find a job that aligns with my values? Ditch that hamster wheel and climb on two wheels that can take you places, Maya Donelson would tell you. A 2006 graduate of New York’s Syracuse University, Donelson knew she wanted to do something green in her life. But it took a random adventure — a cross-country cycling-trip fundraiser for Greenpeace — to help show …

To engage other students, green activists put their best fête forward

  A pop quiz for the college crowd: Which of the following is no fun? A) Beer B) Doing it in the dark C) Global warming activism D) This is a trick question — they’re all related If you picked C, you’re forgiven, says Maura Cowley, campaign director for the Sierra Student Coalition. But, dude, you’re so wrong. The right answer, of course, is D. Today’s campus eco-actions involve all sorts of festive frolicking, from “Save the Ales” parties for the 21-and-older set to “Do It in the Dark” contests, green condoms, and risqué recycling campaigns. “We want to make …

Incoming Yale student plans to ramp up her activism for the big leagues

For some people, life starts after college. For Karoline Evin McMullen, it began in middle school. Karoline Evin McMullen Age: 18 School: Yale University By the time she was 14, McMullen of rural Geauga County, Ohio, had already: written a textbook for elementary school kids; started a project with two friends to protect endangered brook trout; won a Christopher Columbus Award and a trip to Walt Disney World; and won a President’s Environmental Youth Award and a trip to another fantastical kingdom, the White House, to meet President Bush and the head of the U.S. EPA. Those awards — and …

Student activist gets Phoenix buzzing with green biz expo

Chris Samila Age: 23 School: Arizona State University Sometimes people do things because they don’t realize they can’t. If this makes no sense to you, you haven’t met Chris Samila, a (permanent, as he jokingly puts it) senior at Arizona State University in Tempe, where he had some epiphanies, founded a business (Green Summit Inc.), and somehow managed to pull off a wildly successful green business expo on campus. With no experience. And no real cash. And about five volunteers. “We had no idea what we were doing,” Samila says. “There were so many nights where I was like, ‘Oh …

How to green your love life

Skyrockets in flight … but is it an eco-friendly delight? Photo: iStockphoto Ahhh, the bedroom: an oasis of pleasure, a place where terms like “emissions reduction” and “off-gassing” should never intrude. Not that environmentalism and sex don’t mix. It’s just that lying back and thinking about things like CO2 and carcinogens isn’t exactly … hot. So what’s a passionate greenie to do? The answer is easy as one, two, wheee. We’ve assembled a slew of ideas (and a whole lotta handy resources) that will allow you to relax and enjoy yourself — and they’re handily categorized in order of difficulty. …

Thoughts on surviving life after Brood Awakenings

The perfect ending is a gorgeous thing, all the loose ends neatly knotted, all the confusion gone. It’s a motionless bird on a wire — calm, brightly plumed, contented, with no need to fly off or find a worm or do anything but sit in the sun and enjoy the day. Illustration: Keri Rosebraugh If only parenthood were like that. That’s the kind of wistfulness I’ve been indulging in over the past few weeks as I’ve worked with Grist on its special series about green parenting. The project is jam-packed with tips and information about everything from safe bibs to …

The road to disodium inosinate is paved with good intentions

Mea culpa. That’s the only way I can honestly write anything about getting older kids to eat healthy foods. Because I’ve been a sucker for the look my 11-year-old gets on her face if I plop down a bowl of nuclear-orange SpongeBob mac-and-cheese in front of her. Sheer joy: that’s the only way to describe it. Ditto for the times she eats (can I admit this?) Cookie Crisp cereal, high-fructose corn syrup laced yogurt, and the occasional bag of Doritos — chips that look toxic enough to qualify as their own Superfund sites. Open mouth, insert junk food. Photo: iStockphoto …

A chat about Congress’ effort to restore environmental education funds

“Go outside and play!” It’s a simple enough command, but as a nation of teeth-gnashing parents and teachers will tell you, not enough kids want to unplug or log off long enough to heed it. Enter Congress. That’s right, Congress. The oyster is your classroom. Amid growing evidence that learning about nature and actually experiencing it can help children become healthier, happier, more engaged citizens, Sen. Jack Reed (D-R.I.) and Rep. John Sarbanes (D-Md.) introduced the No Child Left Inside Act in the Senate and House this summer. The goal of the legislation, treading the path forged by author Richard …

An interview with green pediatrician Alan Greene

If you were to give a check-up to Alan Greene, eco-pediatrician extraordinaire, you just might diagnose him with ASHD — Attention Surplus Hyperproductivity Disorder. It isn’t a real disorder, of course. But whatever Greene’s got — whatever blend of vim and vision allows him to stay at the cutting edge of environmentalism and e-medicine while also writing books, doctoring, and being a 100-percent-organic-food-eating father of four — well, it’s something that’s helped the world get better. Dr. Alan Greene. Consider: In 1995, Greene and his wife Cheryl sat down at their kitchen table in San Mateo, Calif., and launched the …