The Green Life:

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14 posts from April 2007

April 13, 2007

Save Some Green On Your Taxes

TaxeslargeIt's the final weekend to finish up your taxes, and if you bought a hybrid car or made energy-efficient improvements to your home in 2006, you may be eligible for a credit or deduction. Find out if the government owes you any green for your green decision.

Sad Mac

SadmacOuch. While I've been following my boyfriend around our apartment, turning off lights and recycling things he puts in the trash (he's getting a lot better about that), he may actually have been being the better environmentalist--at least when it comes to our respective choices of computers. As a devoted Apple partisan for more than two decades (ah, the memories), I was none too pleased to see the maker of my favorite machines come in dead last in Greenpeace's recent ranking of electronic manufacturers' policies on recycling and toxic contents. My better half's employer, Dell, was a respectable #4 on the list, and his boss got props for "challeng[ing] the entire industry to adopt a worldwide takeback policy."

Apple150iloveFortunately, I'm not the only one feeling a little pain. The Greenpeace folks admit to being Apple fans too, and have started up a "Green Apple" campaign to get the company to offer safer products and better recycling. I'm off to write my letter to Steve Jobs now...

April 12, 2007

Spring Greening

Mrsmeyers_3Ecover_3It doesn't seem like it was too long ago that the only known names in the natural-cleaning biz were Seventh Generation and Planet. Now a host of companies promise sparkle without the side effects. Whether you go for the experience of Ecover (making ecological cleaners in Belgium since 1980), the ultra-concentrated formulas of Biokleen, the sleek designs of Method, or the aromatherapeutic options from Mrs. Meyer's, your spring cleaning won't leave a mark on the Earth. Do-it-yourselfers can even get a helping hand from Eco-Me's mix-your-own-cleaning-product kits. The only danger? All the enticing options might keep you shopping instead of scrubbing.

April 11, 2007

The Wild Life

Planetearth_2I was laid up by the flu for almost a week, so the only adventuring I've been up for has been of the armchair variety. The "Ice Worlds" segment of the Discovery Channel's 11-part miniseries Planet Earth promised (and delivered) a cooling respite from my feverish state. It clearly took some extreme filmmaking to get these amazing views of life at the polar ends of the Earth: Hundreds of male penguins clustered wing-to-wing to protect their eggs through weeks of frigid storms, a polar bear swimming miles to find food and desperately stalking a walrus herd, and the first steps of baby musk ox, among other memorable, gorgeously shot scenes. The series airs Sundays through April 22 and is available on DVD.

Gowildlv_2Closer to home, Go Wild! Outside Las Vegas showed me what I was missing on my last trip to Sin City: spectacular rock climbing, scenic hikes, and restful soaks in flower-laden springs--just a stone's throw from the slot machines. Writer/director Doug Robinson, a longtime climber, is a congenial guide to these little-known desert treats.

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