Business & Technology

She's redefining green

Brenda Palms-Barber

Art: Nat Damm Brenda Palms-Barber Chief Executive Director, North Lawndale Employment Network Chicago, Ill. Brenda Palms-Barber never meant to start a green project. She just wanted to create jobs for the residents of Chicago’s North Lawndale neighborhood, 57 percent of whom have been incarcerated or had some involvement with the criminal justice system. As chief executive director of the North Lawndale Employment Network, she hatched the idea for Sweet Beginnings, an urban honey farming business that trains and employs locals who would otherwise have a hard time finding a job. In addition to selling honey, Sweet Beginnings produces the beeline brand of all-natural personal-care …

he's redefining green

Steve Price

Art: Nat Damm Steve Price Digital Designer, Urban Advantage El Cerrito, Calif. Digital artist Steve Price, 59, wants to show you the future of green urbanism—literally show you. He creates photo simulations of what blighted urban landscapes would look like if they were transformed into healthier, safer, more sustainable places—and pretty sweet spots to live. Price’s Berkeley firm, Urban Advantage, builds “photo-realistic visualizations” for developers, design firms, and local governments that want to show how walkable urban development could revitalize an area. “Everybody kind of nods and agrees and knits their brows as they listen to statistics and information about …

Double take

Fast food salads worse for you than KFC’s meaty Double Down

So you’re boycotting KFC because you think its extra-meaty Double Down sandwich (two chicken breasts, hold the buns) is nasty. But you’re running late and need food now. You opt for a healthy option at Burger King — a salad (the Tendercrisp Garden Salad, to be exact). Not so fast, McFoodie. The Consumerist has a list of 10 fast food items that are worse for you than the Double Down, and three of them happen to be faux-healthy salads.   The Double Down’s nutrition line is surprisingly low: 540 calories, 32 grams of fat, and 1,380 milligrams of sodium. Not surprisingly, …

he's redefining green

Gerod Rody

Art: Nat Damm Gerod Rody Founder, Out for Sustainability Seattle, Wash. Gerod Rody, 29, felt a disconnect between his life as a gay man and his work in the sustainability field, so he founded Out for Sustainability to bring the two together and encourage the LGBTQ community to embrace the green cause. The group is celebrating the 40th anniversary of Earth Day with Earth Gay events where volunteers can help on projects like urban gardening and habitat restoration—followed, of course, by a lively afterparty, complete with limited-edition “Nature Is So Gay” T-shirts. Rody is also the marketing and communications associate at the sustainability-focused Bainbridge Graduate Institute, where …

he's redefining green

Alan Salzman

Art: Nat Damm Alan Salzman Chief Executive, VantagePoint Venture Partners Atherton, Calif. Alan Salzman, 56, one of Silicon Valley’s leading green venture capitalists, and his firm, VantagePoint Venture Partners, have invested in a slew of startups that may emerge as the linchpins of a sustainable economy—companies like solar power plant builder BrightSource Energy, electric carmaker Tesla Motors, and electric-car infrastructure developer Better Place, as well as home-energy management companies AlertMe and Tendril. Salzman also spends time in Washington, D.C., and Europe, advocating for greentech-friendly government policy. Read a Grist article about Salzman. Follow VantagePoint Venture Partners on Twitter.

She's redefining green

Janine Yorio

Art: Nat Damm Janine Yorio Founder and Managing Director, NewSeed Advisors New York City, N.Y. Janine Yorio, 33, formerly a Wall Street investor, has turned her finance savvy to the food world. Her firm, NewSeed Advisors, founded in 2009, invests in and advises promising companies working to make agriculture more sustainable. NewSeed has hosted two Agriculture 2.0 investor conferences, in New York and Palo Alto, Calif., connecting venture capitalists with ag entrepreneurs — two groups that don’t usually mix and mingle. Read a Grist article about the 2010 Agriculture conference. Follow Yorio on Twitter.

Amonix has real solar news instead of Earth Day idiocy

I’m waving the green flag of surrender, crushed by the organic cotton-gloved fist of the enviro-public relations-industrial complex. I will write an Earth Day column, my resistance broken by the ceaseless pitches from corporate PR people to include “in your Earth Day coverage” everything from how to “go green between the sheets [and] make your love life sustainable,” to a certain multinational beverage company’s LEED-certified bottling plant, to a defense contactor’s environmental initiatives. It just won’t be a column about any of those things. As I fruitlessly explained to those who wouldn’t take their deleted pitches and unanswered phone calls …

he's redefining green

Berlin Reed

Art: Nat DammBerlin Reed The Ethical Butcher Portland, Ore. Berlin Reed, 27, took an unlikely path through vegetarianism and even “militant” veganism before embracing his new profession whole hog — literally. He now styles himself The Ethical Butcher. He gets all of his meat from small, local farms and visits every one to meet the farmers and see first-hand how their animals are raised. He’s converting people to the cause of sustainable meat through what he calls The Bacon Gospel, curing bacon with flavors like watermelon-basil and horseradish-lemon-turmeric, as well as through the Heritage Breed Supper Club, where people not only …

One Giant Leap for Greenkind

40 people who are redefining green

Four decades after the first Earth Day, the circle of people working toward a cleaner, greener world has expanded way beyond treehugging hippies, red-paint-throwing protesters, posturing politicos, and card-carrying members of enviro groups. To mark this milestone, we’ve found 40 unexpected people who are altering the green landscape. Nat Damm Erika Allen Projects Manager, Growing Power Chicago, Ill. Erika Allen grew up on a farm in Rockville, Md., working in the fields with her father. “We didn’t have a TV and we relied on a wood stove, but we were known as the ‘food family’ because we had so much …

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