Green Light: Charge it

Nissan to bring EV network to Seattle

Like many other urban places, Seattle will welcome an electric vehicle network to the Emerald City. In a nonexclusive partnership with Nissan North America, the city of Seattle will promote the development of electric-charging infrastructure. “The city is committed to creating an environment that is kind to EVs,” said Seattle Mayor Greg Nickels (D). However, the agreement between the manufacturer and the municipality does not go so far as to commit to any specifics. Instead, Nissan will take the lead in establishing local working groups to evaluate sites for possible charging stations. The city will in turn “consider” adopting those …

Draft punk

Seattle, utility to help pay for home energy audits

Photo: Office of the MayorSometimes, fighting climate change is a numbers game. Numbers like 20 — the percentage of Seattle’s carbon footprint caused by energy use in homes and buildings. Also 600 — the cost (in $) of a home energy audit to find out just how drafty those old windows are. But thanks to two more numbers (big ones, both preceded by dollar signs), some 5,000 homeowners will be looking at a new number: 95 — as in a much-discounted rate for said energy audit. It’s part of Mayor Greg Nickels’ (D) Green Building Capital Initiative, an effort to …


Russell Simmons on harnessing the power of hip-hop to change the world

Courtesy Global GrindHip-hop mogul Russell Simmons is the co-founder of Def Jam Records, a sometime reality star, and an entrepreneur who’s launched a number of successful ventures including clothing lines Phat Farm and Baby Phat. He’s also a yoga-practicing vegan who’s hoping to use his resources to make change in the world of hip-hop — and the world at large. Describing himself as “hip-hop to the bone,” Simmons is quick to hail the power of that community in influencing politics, pointing to a recent change in drug policy in New York State. “That was because Jay-Z and Puffy and Rev …

Gettin' fresh

Seattle’s Ferry Farm Stand brings fresh produce to hungry commuters

Photo: tobiaseigen via Flickr.It’s a mid-week summer evening, and you’re making the commute back home to Bainbridge Island wondering what’s for dinner. You’re craving fresh, local produce, but you’re on a boat (you’re on a boat, everybody look at you!). Lucky for you, this is a dinner dilemma no longer: Starting June 25, the Ferry Farm Stand will set up shop at the Bainbridge Island ferry terminal Wednesday evenings to serve commuters headed home on the busy 4:40 and 5:30 p.m. sailings. They’ll be offering convenient $5 bags of fruits and veggies picked from Bainbridge Island and North Kitsap farms. …

The Prince and the Poper

Charles and Benedict chat about climate

Earlier today, Prince Charles and Pope Benedict XVI met to discuss their shared environmental concerns, with Camilla looking on. With press reports so far scant on details, we are left to imagine the proceedings. We couldn’t find a free photo of the prince shaking hands with His Holiness, so we’re settling for a Flickr shot of St. Peter’s Square. Got a better photo?Argenberg via FlickrHis Royal Highness the Prince of Wales: Good morning, Your Holiness. His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI: Good morning, Your Royal Highness. May I call you … Chuck? HRHPW: Absolutely. May I call you Benny? HHPBXVI: Not …

I've Had the Time of My Light

Ask Umbra on light timers

Q. Dear Umbra, So I’ve gotten a lot better at turning out the lights when I’m not in the room. I’ve still got some work to do in terms of turning off power strips when I’m not using appliances though. I was thinking about this last night and I remembered this contraption at my grandparents’ house that is preset to turn lights on and off at particular hours during the day. I haven’t had much luck figuring out what these devices are called to determine where to get them, or if they are worth it. Could you look into this …

Not milk?

Navigating the non-dairy ‘milk’ aisle

In Checkout Line, Lou Bendrick cooks up answers to reader questions about how to green their food choices and other diet-related quandaries. Lettuce know what food worries keep you up at night. Dear Lou,I went to pick up some milk at our local mom-and-pop shop and noticed they had soy milk.  Since it seems a lot of our friends have switched to soy milk, I thought I would try some. Oh, the choices!  Not only were there three different organic soy milks, there were three rice milks and two hemp milks! Totally confused, I stuck with the organic milk from …

The Grist List

From JT to Jedi

Photo: edwardk662 via Flickr.Crying himself a riverJT’s concerns about the clean water crisis are justified. He knows that what goes around / comes around, so he’s gathered a boy band of hikers to bring sexyback to Mount Kilimanjaro. Who knew he was so ‘n sync with environmental issues?   (Click below to see the next item in this week’s Grist List — or view them all on a single page.)            

Go Green? Make Me

The psychology of eco-choices

Pay a lot, get a little?Hawaiian AirlinesYesterday I was on New Hampshire Public Radio’s Word of Mouth, and another segment near mine caught my eye. (Ear?) It was about the psychology of green decision-making, pivoting off a Richard Conniff piece on behavioral economics. (Which dropped at the same time as the related New York Times Magazine piece on decision science, but doesn’t seem to be directly connected.) Without getting all wonk-tastic, the idea is that we don’t do green stuff because it’s good for the planet. We do green stuff when we get rewarded, or when we think our peers …

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