MAYDAY, MAYDAY – Democracy Calling

 

Last month, my friend Carla Young and I were blown away by the amazing Larry Lessig at the Kellogg Innovation Network’s (KIN) Change @ Scale forum. Another friend Stephanie Wolcott, who’s involved with KIN, had earlier told me his talk was a must-see. She was right. He’s a Harvard professor passionately committed to saving our democracy through Campaign Finance Reform. Clearly, money … Read more

Divestment at Catholic Universities a Climate Gamechanger?

 

Last week, the University of Dayton (UD) announced they will divest fossil fuels from their $670 million endowment – the first Catholic university in the nation to do so. Carbon Tracker 200 and “Filthy 15″ corporations will be phased out, and investments in sustainable and clean energy firms will increase.

 

Naysayers claim divestment won’t work. But I’m hopeful, along … Read more

Green Women Get Social

 

Forty sustainable sisters from across the North Shore socialized, “burgerfied” and discovered Make It Better’s green roots.

 

Let me back up a bit. After a successful North Shore women’s environmental event in November 2012, I came together with a group of women from Evanston to Highland Park to create North Shore Green Women(NSGW). As a result, we’ve organized several … Read more

12 Ways Chicagoland is Greener & Cleaner Than You Think

 

(reprinted from 6 Ways Chicagoland is Cleaner & Greener Than You Think Part I and 6 More Ways Part II featured on Amanda Hanley’s Huffington Post blog)

 

 

While the new Showtime series Years of Living Dangerously and recent International Panel on Climate Change report spotlight the troubling impacts of climate change –  there is hope!

 

Right here, … Read more

Green School Models NextGen Education

 

During my first visit to the Academy for Global Citizenship (AGC), Daisy, a black hen, laid an egg at my feet as the students eagerly acquainted me with their vegetable beds.  Just one of many astonishing firsts I’ve experienced at this innovative green public school on the Chicago’s underserved southwest side.

 

AGC’s mission is to empower children to be mindful … Read more

Girl Takes On Plastic Bag Lobby (& Wins!)

Watch out for determined 13-year old eco-activists!  Last year the Illinois legislature passed a dubious industry-backed bill that required plastic bag manufacturers to set up recycling programs, but prohibited towns from enacting their own recycling mandates, “PlasTax” fees or outright bans on plastic bags. Intent on stopping the law, Grayslake eigth-grader Abby Goldberg started the Don’t … Read more

Waste Not

 

Longing for more recycling – especially at local businesses, multi-family buildings and construction/demolition sites?  food waste collection for composting?  plastic bag bans?  permanent household hazardous waste collection sites?  generally less waste heading to the landfill? and also live in Northern Cook County?

 

If so, please review the Solid Waste Agency of Northern … Read more

Consider This

 

When it comes to a complicated, controversial $41+ million municipal project, let’s dig a little deeper for good information.  Lately my inbox has been bombarded with ironic “THE TRUTH ABOUT…” e-mails from a pro-tunnel group. While they have been long on folksy, fact-ish viewpoints, I’ve noticed they are short on expertise, source links, authorship and accountability.   One that … Read more

Winnetka’s Tunnel Vision

 

In response to severe storms and significant flooding in Winnetka, the Village has proposed a new, controversial plan to manage stormwater.  Based on researching reports, attending meetings and talking with several experts, I will summarize my concerns about the Willow Tunnel (click links for back-up sources).

 

Let me start off by stating, I’m a 17-year resident of Winnetka. … Read more

North Shore Green Infrastructure Tour

Lately there’s been lots of buzz about green infrastructure.  Yet, I’ve found most people have no idea what it really is.  I admit it wasn’t on our radar when we built our new home in 2008. Then we flooded badly in 2011, and again in 2013. Since then we’ve sought out a variety of options to better manage stormwater on our property.  Last fall we installed Winnetka’s first permeable concrete … Read more