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Agriculture

Boxed Wine: Not Just for the Cheap Anymore

I am an avid red wine drinker.  Lately I've been thinking about taking my wine drinking to a greener level, but it's a bit overwhelming as there are a lot of factors to consider.

To start with, what's the difference between USDA certified organic and plain old organic on the labels?  To be USDA certified organic, a vineyard must grow its grapes without using any chemicals or artificial fertilizers.  Also USDA certified organic wine cannot have any sulfites added.  (Don't misinterpret this, though.  These wines will still contain some sulfites, as they naturally occur in wine.)  A wine labelled simply organic means that at least 70% of its contents are organic.

However, being a greener wine consumer is not necessarily synonomous with being an organic wine drinker.  Sustainability is another factor to consider.  What is the vineyard doing to make a less significant impact on the earth?  Are they taking measures to reduce erosion?  How about water consumption?  Do they only run sprinklers when absolutely necessary or is their system automatic?  What methods do they use of reducing pests?

Another way to green your wine consumption is to take a look at where your wine originates.  DrVino.com identifies and explains a "green line" that runs down the center of Ohio.  The Green Line

 

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Use The Right Grass!

The beginning of any lawn project is simple, the grass.  What seems like a small choice really is monumental when it comes to conservation of waters, reduction of fertilizers and preventing the encroachment of non-native species.  For these reason, you must....


USE THE RIGHT GRASS!

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Greentown Conference: Sustainable Agriculture

This is a great talk from Michael Hamm, C.S. Mott Professor of Sustainable Food Systems at Michigan State University.  The talks takes place at Micigan's Grand Rapids Community College and is one in a series called The Michigan Economic Development: Opportunities Through Local, Sustainable Agriculture.  A great video for any of those interested in green agriculture.

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Eating Local Foods Saves the Environment

I've been a food snob for about the past 10 years.

I still vividly remember the Wednesday (I think?) mornings I'd go to the outdoor farmer's market with my grandmother and mother in the days before I started preschool.  It was those memories that drove me, nearly 17 years later, back to Soulard Market.  I was immediately taken with the chaotic, dim, random atmosphere; it was only after I got back home and started cooking that I was taken with the absolute taste difference between the fresh spinach I'd gotten there and the "fresh" spinach I'd been buying at the local grocery store.  Since that day, I've never looked back.... read more

Some People Trading Lawns for Veggie Gardens

A great piece of video journalism by the Associated Press dealing with the rise edible gardens.  Even though the piece is a year old, it highlights the great reasons why people should get involved.

"An increasing, albeit small, number of people are trying edible landscaping: growing fruits and vegetables mixed in with traditional, ornamental flowers, to save money on food, eat healthier and ensure their fresh food is safe."

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Sustainable Garden Intiative Taking Root in Menlo Park, CA

Last night I attended a meetup group in Menlo Park, CA.  The meeting, held in the public library, focused on the creation of a group that will motivate and aid people in converting their yards into sustainable landscapes.  The group is seeking to do this by using earth friendly gardening techniques, establishing edible gardens and re-introducing native, drought tolerant plants.

Edible Gardens, Menlo Park Green, Menlo Park Sustainable Gardens... read more

The Lowdown on Algae as a BioFuel

Earth2Tech recently wrote a piece on the benefits and problems of Algae as a potential bio-fuel.  The article was fascinating in that it went over most of the major issues relating to the new technology.

Algae Bio-Fuel... read more

Vegan Eco Gal Tours Laguna Green - A Home & Bath Ecological Store

Whitney Lauritsen (aka Eco-Vegan Gal) gets a guided tour of the Laguna Green, a green home and bath store in Laguna Beach, California.  The tour is pretty amazing.  The amount of green based technology on display is impressive and the owner, Pam Sterling, seems incredibly knowledgeable.  She must be a great sales person.

The only problem I have with the video is the shirtless guys plastered everywhere in the beginning.  Kind of weird, but I suppose it is a motif that Ms. Pam Sterling must really like.

Check out the eco-vegan gal blog here and her youtube channel here.... read more

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Paper made of...poop?

Yes, you read my headline right!   This was just way too cool not to share.

Sheep Poo Paper makes paper out of fresh sheep poop in Wales.  Don't worry, they sterilize it!  (at 120 degrees centigrade)

Sheep Poo Paper... read more

Walmart Mandates Green Labels

The world's largest retailer is leading the way in helping consumers know the impacts of the products they buy.  Announced on Wednesday, Walmart is planning to mandate eco-ratings on all products sold in their stores.  These ratings, similar to those provided by the GoodGuide, will grade a product on environmental and societal factors.

Walmart Green Label

This step to create an electronic index of ratings is a bold step by the largest retailer, who is continually spearheading new green initiatives.  The guide will be created by mandating that all 100,000 of Walmart's suppliers answer fifteen questions such as, “Have you set publicly available greenhouse gas reduction targets? If yes, what are those targets?”  These answers will be entered into a matrix created by scholars and experts to produce a simple score that the consumer can read on the package.... read more

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