Living

How to build a better playground

This story was written by Shanti Menon. In her new book Asphalt to Ecosystems: Design Ideas for Schoolyard Transformation, Berkeley-based environmental planner Sharon Danks explores the ways in which landscape design, architecture, child development, and …

How commuting can ruin your marriage

At least in Sweden, people who have a long-distance commute are 40 percent more likely to separate or divorce. That’s the finding of Erika Sandow, a Swedish social geographer who studied more than two million …

Mushrooms make short work of dirty diapers

As a sustainability solution, cloth diapers were never fun. Even the most eco-minded have been known to quail in front of a pail of soiled nappies. But a team of researchers has come up with …

Turn your car into a car-share

So you’ve successfully reduced your car usage, and now you have this hunk of metal sitting around outside your house, like a garden gnome that needs annual emissions inspections. Why not share it, and maybe …

Pollution

Worried about radiation in breast milk? Still best to keep breast-feeding

How can we best protect the wee ones?For survivors of Japan’s devastating earthquake and tsunami, there have been so many concerns: access to clean water and food, the need for shelter, the threat of disease. …

Scary Food

Breaking: California to vote on BPA ban today

If I find out there’s BPA in this bottle, I’m going to throw a tantrum like you’ve never seen before.The California State Assembly today will vote soon on a bill to protect our most vulnerable …

Green Living Tips

Cup o’ woe: Ask Umbra on single-serve coffee alternatives

Send your question to Umbra! Q. Dear Umbra, I work in an office of serious coffee drinkers. We have a Keurig single-cup coffee brewer that everyone loves because it allows them to choose their own …

Living

Betty White is greener than you (and a GINK role model too)

Betty White, honorary forest ranger and ardent environmentalist.Photo: USDAWhite is the new green! Did you know that the octogenarian actress is a longtime environmentalist? She’s starring in a new campaign for The Wilderness Society: “Keep …

Why environmentalists will survive Armageddon

Hate to break it to you, but if it's really the end of the world tomorrow (or tonight), as Harold Camping and his followers attest, you're almost certainly screwed. So what will ease your suffering …