Thursday, May 29, 2008

Cut Your Water Bill This Summer with Easy Lawn Tips

I've never understood the American obsession with the vast green lawn. It requires massive investment of resources -- time, water, fertilizer -- and in return you get a yard that looks like it would be great to do something on ... but you can't because the lawn is so delicate that anything but brief traffic could kill it.

But The Green Miles is a realist and knows he's not going to convince you to convert that lawn into a
Backyard Wildlife Habitat today. So instead, here are a couple of quick tips to keep that iconic green lawn while cutting your water bill and your environmental impact.
  • Use a soaker hose. The slow-drip is much more efficient than sprinklers, which can lose as much as 70 percent of their water to evaporation and runoff. One additional benefit - no spray means leaf diseases are kept in check. I don't know which brand is best, but here's a link to a soaker hose made from recycled rubber.
  • Water before 8am or after 6pm. Water at midday and you'll lose as much as 30 percent of your water to evaporation.
  • Water in short spells. Since you're just trying to saturate the top few inches, lawns absorb water better in a few ten-minute segments than in one half-hour stretch.
Grist has more tips for greening your lawn.

Wednesday, May 28, 2008

One Worker's Battle to Turn Borders Green

Got this comment in response to my complaints about Seattle's Best Coffee's reusable mug aversion and thought it deserved its own post:
I work in Rockford, IL at Borders. I was originally a cashier, and about eight months ago I transferred to the cafe. We serve Seattle's Best Coffee and constantly promote the use of our ceramic mugs. Common regulars always use them, but it is difficult persuading new customers. I've noticed that when we remind them mugs keep the coffee much warmer people are more willing to use them. There's also a trend factor involved. If several people are using mugs, several more will inquire about them.

Our entire store (cafe AND bookstore) only recycles cardboard. It's really a sad, sad thing. We have bins for paper, and when I asked about the recycling I was told "we just don't do that." Keep in mind that this is not a matter of personal choice, I'm sure our employees would be willing to jump on the green bandwagon.

We do offer a whole ten cent discount if you bring a travel mug in, and never advertise it. I worked for several months before I even heard of the offer. I know the discount is better than nothing at all, yet cannot shake the fact that the sales tax on a cup of coffee is slightly double that! A ten cent discount is hardly effective and therefore motivates no one.

I can speak on behalf of the cafe and the eight baristas. We are attempting to become a green cafe and have taken matters into our own hands, mine particularly. No one knows how to organize a recycling program, and we're also clueless as to how we can make this an easy task.

As of right now, we've attempted to do this for one week and even the baristas who opposed it are caving in and helping. The downfall of all this is that I, alone, am trying to coordinate a way to transport all this material. I've spent the last three hours (which is how I came about this site) trying to find ONE drop-off recycling center that is open during the week. I've found two possible options, but still must contact them.

I've become more frustrated with each minute - not so much at the fact that a city of 150,000 won't mandate recycling - or that a simple option of printing a receipt on our registers would save the majority of our paper waste - or that the websites I've come across are vague.

I should have a defeated attitude, but I'm stubbornly motivated to succeed. I feel as though I have one option and that is to make a fuss over this. I think that's the only way anything is going to come about and hopefully I won't lose my job in the process.
It's hard being the first to do anything. Even The Green Miles has found something as simple as switching to reusables to be often demoralizing.

But your reward is knowing that you've blazed a trail. In fact, a study just this week showed your role modeling of positive behavior can have a ripple effect through your social network and beyond.

Keep fighting the good fight!

Tuesday, May 27, 2008

One Holiday I'm Glad We're Not Celebrating

The Green Miles recently made headlines (OK, so it was page 48 of the Post Express) for suggesting that public opposition to the Clinton/McCain plan to temporarily eliminate the federal gas tax showed that maybe, just maybe, we'd reached a turning point on energy policy:
Americans are finally saying they don't want short-term cheap gas -- they want solutions that would take long-term pressure off energy prices, like more fuel efficient cars and American-made renewable energy.

But if there's anyone who can keep a good pander alive in the face of increasing public awareness, it's your ratings-seeking media. Last week on WTOP radio, an anchor teased an upcoming gas prices story by saying, "Still ahead, waiting for that bubble to burst so we can fill our gas tanks in a pain-free manner." If anyone out there thinks we'll wake up one day to magically find gas back to $1.09 a gallon, I strongly discourage you from holding your breath.

The great irony is that previous attempts to change our national energy policy (like 2005's Climate Stewardship Act) were rejected because opponents said they might -- get ready for it -- drive up gas prices. So now we have the worst of both worlds -- high gas prices and we're still as addicted to oil as ever. As Joseph Romm writes at Grist, analysts are now revising their previous caps on just how high prices might go:

While $12-15 a gallon gas is probably a long way away -- and still preventable -- it looks increasingly like we dawdled too long on alternatives to avoid $6-7.

What's the reason for the delay in alternatives? I think we all know why.

Cross-posted from Raising Kaine

Monday, May 26, 2008

The Green Miles Conquers Old Rag Mountain

The Green Miles climbed his first mountain this weekend. Yeah, I know, how could an avowed treehugger like me have avoided it for 30 years? I didn't really get into trail hiking until relatively recently. And Northern Virginia has so many great parks and trails to explore, I've always had an excuse to stay local and avoid the two hour drive to the closest mountains.

But my roommate loves hiking Shenandoah National Park, so this weekend we headed down Route 211 to Old Rag Mountain. We took the less-challenging back route up, skipping the rock scrambles of the main trail, but it was still five miles to the 3,291-foot peak and back. As you can see below, the view was well worth it.

Get much more information about hiking Old Rag at Hiking Upward.

Friday, May 23, 2008

How Many Cops Does It Take To Monitor a Clean Energy Rally?

Here's a great video of a clean energy rally in Richmond that The Green Miles attended recently:

Digg users can vote this up here!

Thursday, May 22, 2008

Strange But True: UPS Saves $12 Million the Right Way

Small steps towards energy efficiency may not seem like they add up to much around your home. Changing an incandescent bulb to a compact fluorescent saves you $3 per bulb each year -- nice, but not enough for a beer at the ballpark.

But if you're Wal-Mart and use hundreds of thousands of bulbs, changing to CFLs can add up to millions in savings.

UPS recently made a similar discovery, finding that smarter route planning added up to enormous rewards:

Company leaders figured out that sitting in traffic, waiting to make a left, burns way too much fuel. So they zapped as many left turns as they could from 100,000 truck routes a day.

Instead, drivers are handed computer-generated delivery routes that have them going in efficiently calculated loops, calling for left turns only when necessary.

"You start on the right-hand side of the street and you stay on the right-hand side of the street almost all of the day," said Dan McMackin, a former UPS driver who is now a company spokesman. "The only left turn you make is to come home."

According to the company, this simple technique saves an eye-popping amount of gasoline. "In the last year alone," a UPS release stated, "this system has shaved nearly 30 million miles off UPS's delivery routes, saved 3 million gallons of gas, and reduced emissions by 32,000 metric tons of CO2 - the equivalent of removing 5,300 passenger cars off the road for an entire year."

At $4 a gallon, conserving 3 million gallons of gas translates to a savings of $12 million.

Wednesday, May 21, 2008

Hey, Remember the 90s? Patrick Michaels is Bringing Climate Denial Back!

A lot of conservatives have moved on from trying to say global warming isn't happening, or even that it's not due to man-made greenhouse gas emissions. Instead people like President Bush say that while global warming is happening, we mustn't require anyone to do anything about it because they think American business is unable to innovate and will never be able to adapt. OK, they don't say that last part, but it's certainly what they imply.

But not Patrick J. Michaels. The disgraced wannabe Virginia state climatologist is a retro kind of guy. So now, in the tradition of Goat Boy, he's bringing us Hey! Remember the '90s, when global warming deniers ran wild.

Let's break it down

Global-warming myth
Washington Times
May 16, 2008

I love it. Don't be like that wishy-washy President Bush, trying to cover up your true beliefs and trying to at least sound rational and moderate.

Say what you mean. Go for the throat right in the headline. Global warming is made up!

By Patrick J. Michaels - On May Day, Noah Keenlyside of Germany's Leipzig Institute of Marine Science, published a paper in Nature forecasting no additional global warming "over the next decade."

Germany's Leipzing Institute of Marine Science - certainly much more of a known and trusted name than, say, NASA. Or the UN's IPCC.

And hey, why aren't you putting global warming in quotes like Drudge always does? Everyone knows if you put something in quotes it means it's made up.

Al Gore and his minions continue to chant that "the science is settled" on global warming, but the only thing settled is that there has not been any since 1998.

Not true. 2005 was the hottest year on record. 2007 tied with 1998 for the second-hottest year on record. But continue, Patrick J. Michaels. Let's not let a complete fabrication in your second sentence slow you down. And I like where you're going with the selective use of quotation marks.

Critics of this view (rightfully) argue that 1998 was the warmest year in modern record, due to a huge El Nino event in the Pacific Ocean, and that it is unfair to start any analysis at a high (or a low) point in a longer history.

I wouldn't argue that because 1998 wasn't the hottest year on record. You'd think a climatologist would be able to get that right. But generally speaking, I'd agree -- can't start a review of any data by cherry-picking an abberational year and starting from there. Like, saying the Red Sox are the best team ever because they have the most titles since 2004 (when they had none in the 86 years before that). That would be dishonest.

But starting in 2001 or 1998 yields the same result: no warming.

Wait, didn't you just say that would be dishonest? I mean, we knew he'd manipulate the data and facts to fit his argument, but isn't it a little weird to actually say, "You know what would be dishonest? What I'm about to do."

The Keenlyside team found that natural variability in the Earth's oceans will "temporarily offset" global warming from carbon dioxide. Seventy percent of the Earth's surface is oceanic; hence, what happens there greatly influences global temperature. It is now known that both Atlantic and Pacific temperatures can get "stuck," for a decade or longer, in relatively warm or cool patterns. The North Atlantic is now forecast to be in a cold stage for a decade, which will help put the damper on global warming. Another Pacific temperature pattern is forecast not to push warming, either.

Yes. Projections. Models. Forecasts. All valuable. Keep these words in mind, kids. There will be a quiz in couple of paragraphs.

Science no longer provides justification for any rush to pass drastic global warming legislation. The Climate Security Act, sponsored by Joe Lieberman and John Warner, would cut emissions of carbon dioxide — the main "global warming" gas — by 66 percent over the next 42 years. With expected population growth, this means about a 90 percent drop in emissions per capita, to 19th-century levels.

BAM! "Global warming" in quotes. Means it's not true. Global warming now exists only in Imaginationland.

But yes, the Climate Security Act would dramatically slash our greenhouse gas emissions. It's not the first time America has asked science and industry to lead a revolution. Apollo project. Building a military machine to stop the Nazis. Big problems, big solutions. We can do it.

Other regulatory dictates are similarly unjustified. The Justice Department has ruled that the Interior Department has until May 15 to decide whether or not to list the polar bear as an endangered species.

Pressure to pass impossible-to-achieve legislation, like Lieberman-Warner, or grandstanding political stunts, like calling polar bears an "endangered species" even when they are at near record-high population levels, are based upon projections of rapid and persistent global warming.

WHAMMY! Endangered species don't exist anymore, either. Relax, giant pandas! You're doing fine.

And again with the impossible-to-achieve-ness. Great things are hard to do. If they were easy, they wouldn't be great. I just picture Patrick J. Michaels watching the opening scenes of Saving Private Ryan with his arms folded and shaking his head saying, "This is going to be a short movie. They'll never make it."

Proponents of wild legislation like to point to the 2007 science compendium from the U.N. Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change, deemed so authoritative it was awarded half of last year's Nobel Peace Prize. (The other half went to Al Gore.) In it there are dozens of computer-driven projections for 21st-century warming. Not one of them projects that the earth's natural climate variability will shut down global warming from carbon dioxide for two decades. Yet, that is just what has happened.

Yes, we wouldn't want to rely on computer projections and models, would we? Wait, what's that? Patrick J. Michaels was talking about a computer models and forecasts just five paragraphs ago? Well, you see, that's a model he agrees with. That's fine. The thousands of models he disagrees with are all bullshit.

The next half-dozen paragraphs are more "this one guy is right and the entire rest of the scientific community is wrong." Let's skip to the end.

One final prediction: The teeming polar bear population will be listed as "endangered," and in the next year or two, Congress will pass a bill mandating large and impossible cuts in carbon dioxide.

Um, that's not one prediction. That's two. No wonder this guy can't figure out which year was the hottest on record.

What is "settled" is the politics, not the science.

The science isn't settled! Teach to the controversy! Evolution is a theory! Wait, what were we talking about?

Patrick J. Michaels is senior fellow in environmental studies at the Cato Institute.

We even get a revealing tidbit in the tagline. Patrick J. Michaels works for the Cato Institute, which is funded in part by the American Petroleum Institute, ExxonMobil and General Motors. Gee, do you think that might color his perspective? Just a little bit?

Tuesday, May 20, 2008

Morning Exercise for Arlingtonians

The Green Miles came to the embarrassing realization the other day that he'd forgotten to enter enviroCAB in his cell for easy reference. So he has a morning exercise for you.

What's that now? Don't think this is actually exercise? Well, if Nintendo can call this exercise, anything's fair game.
  1. Get out your cell phone.
  2. Create a new contact called "enviroCAB."
  3. Enter this number: (703) 920-3333.
See, I bet you burned, like, 5 calories. And had fun at the same time! Maybe now you're ready to lose 2,000 pounds in one day.

Monday, May 19, 2008

Friday, May 16, 2008

Earth-Shaking Clean Energy Deal: Investor Bets $2 Billion on Wind

Huge news in the renewable energy sector today:
Oil investor T. Boone Pickens' Mesa Power LLP said on Thursday it ordered 667 wind turbines from General Electric Co as part of the $2 billion first phase of a planned Texas wind farm.

It said the turbine order was the world's largest for a single-site wind power development.

The 667 turbines are capable of generating 1,000 megawatts of electricity, enough to power more than 300,000 average U.S. homes, Mesa said in a release.

The four-phase Pampa Wind Project would be the world's largest wind energy generator, with more than 4,000 megawatts of electricity, enough for 1.3 million homes, when completed in 2014, Mesa said.
OK, so let's compare the planned energy investments for Virginia and Texas:

Virginia: $1.8 billion for a 585 megawatt coal-fired facility in Wise County. Short-term jobs during construction: 800. Long-term jobs during operation: 75. Estimated increase in operation costs if carbon capture and storage becomes viable: 30-60%. Without CCS, estimated annual cost of carbon permits in 2030 for 5.4 million tons of C02: $108 million.

Texas: $2 billion for a 1,000 megawatt wind power facility. For full 4,000 megawatt facility, short-term jobs during construction: 1,500 jobs. Long-term jobs during operation: 720. Added cost of operation under climate legislation limiting carbon emissions: $0.

It's not too late to make the smart investment. Tell Gov. Kaine to make thoughtful appointments to the Virginia State Air Pollution Control Board as it reviews permits for polluting facilities such as the proposed Wise County plant and the Mirant plant in Alexandria.

Cross-posted from Raising Kaine

Thursday, May 15, 2008

Hillary Was For Easing Our Oil Addiction Before She Was Against It

Barack Obama recently appeared on NBC's Meet the Press and Tim Russert grilled him not on global warming, but on what he could do to artificially lower the price of gas to ensure America stays addicted to oil.

That same morning, Hillary Clinton appeared on ABC's
This Week. Did George Stephanopoulos ask her about global warming or green jobs? Nope.

But leave it to a stupid voter to bring it up. I'm sure George was furious. "This is what happens when you let the amateurs ask the questions!"

VOTER QUESTION: I have -- Sen. Clinton, I actually make less than $25,000 a year, so talking about gas prices is not academic for me. I really do feel pain at the pump.

However, I do feel pandered to when you talk about suspending the gas tax. I don't think that it's really a reasonable plan, and call me crazy, but I actually listen to economists, because I think that they know what they studied.

You say that you have both a short- and a long-term plan for our energy consumption. However, since the suspension of the gas tax would encourage continued overconsumption, which could possibly cancel out any price savings and also undermine our efforts to curb global warming, and your long-term plan includes trying to, say, curb global warming, don't you feel that these two plans are in conflict?

CLINTON: No. And let me stand up, because I can see you better from this angle.

You know, actually, I'm glad you asked this question, because I want to make it very clear that we're talking about short-term relief and a long-term plan. And I have a very comprehensive, long-term plan to reduce our dependence on foreign oil, increase the mileage of our automobiles, and to do it in a way that will push us forward as a leader in the world again, which we have not been, on the issue of global warming. And I invite everyone to go to my Web site,, and read about it.

But if you are driving on average in America this summer, you'll save -- according to Department of Energy figures -- about $70. If you are a long-distance commuter, and a lot of people in Indiana and North Carolina are, if you are a truck driver who depends upon your truck for your living, you're going to save a lot more. In fact, truckers will save about $2 billion in fuel costs.

You see, I really believe we've got to start right now demonstrating a willingness to take on these oil companies. I voted against the big oil giveaway in the 2005 energy bill. My opponent voted for it. I'm on record as taking on the oil companies. And I think having a good debate, like we're having right now in this campaign, helps to lay the groundwork for what we're going to need to do.

See, in the short term, Hillary Clinton will sell out the environment hoping to score a few votes by pandering on the gas tax, willing to recklessly encourage higher consumption (which is what's driven prices to where they are now).

But in the
long term, she'll do the right thing. No selling out the environment or pandering then. Really. Trust her.

If you don't know why cutting the gas tax is a horrible idea on every level, read this Tom Friedman column, it explains it much more clearly and wryly than I could.

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

Russert to Obama: Why Do You Hate Cheap Gas?

From the tone of Tim Russert's question on Meet the Press last week, you'd think Barack Obama was denying food to starving children:
MR. RUSSERT: Why are you against giving taxpayers in Indiana, North Carolina, a relief from federal gasoline tax this summer?
The nerve of that Obama! You know what other jerks are against giving taxpayers in Indiana and North Carolina "relief" (a term once limited to hardcore libertarian propaganda, now a common in the media)? Taxpayers in Indiana and North Carolina.

It may have marked a turning point in America's energy policies. While Hillary Clinton and John McCain have tried to pander to voters by offering them cheap gas, it's backfired. Americans are finally saying they don't want short-term cheap gas -- they want solutions that would take long-term pressure off energy prices, like more fuel efficient cars and American-made renewable energy.

Now that the Indiana and North Carolina primaries are behind us, the media has finally recognized this, crediting Barack Obama's willingness to stand up to Hillary Clinton with his resurgence.

How out of touch was the media on this issue? For sports fans, this is roughly equivalent to, while the winners are celebrating on the pitcher's mound, standing up and confidently predicting the World Series champs.

The Green Miles has been way behind on criticism of media coverage of environmental issues this campaign season. So this week, you get a double dose. Tomorrow, I'll take a look at Hillary Clinton's appearance on ABC's This Week.

Sunday, May 11, 2008

Skunks Flunk Arlington

An odd question makes the front page of today's Washington Post. Are there any skunks left in Arlington?
"We're 40 percent paved over, so there's not much nature left," he said, shrugging. With a growing population of 200,000, the 26-square-mile county might be reaching a "critical mass" of dense urban landscape, [Arlington County naturalist Greg Zell] said, where even the hardiest wild survivors, such as skunks, can no longer make it.

[Earl] Hodnett, a wildlife biologist in Fairfax County, which has a healthy skunk population, says he has a hard time believing the animals have disappeared from Arlington. "It would really raise questions about our own quality of life," he said. "If a skunk can't make it here, how are we doing?" [...]

Zell has mapped all the green spaces in the county, the largest of which is Arlington National Cemetery. What shows up looks like the disjointed pieces of a jigsaw puzzle. "Nothing is connected," he said. "The natural open space that's left is all isolated. Like little islands." Maybe that's why there might be no more skunks, he said. The islands are small. And it's dangerous to move between them.
To connect the pieces of the puzzle, the National Wildlife Federation has created the Backyard Wildlife Habitat program, helping people make their properties friendlier to birds and animals. Thanks to the efforts of Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment, Arlington was one of the first places in the country to be certified as a Community Wildlife Habitat.

But while Arlington is home to deer, raccoons, foxes, snakes, hawks and other critters, apparently skunks haven't been able to put down roots here.

How concerned should Arlingtonians be? It's never a good thing when our community is no longer hospitable to a native resident. But is there something Arlington should be doing differently? We already protect open spaces and have a terrific parks system. Issues like lowering our carbon footprint, protecting streams and improving public transportation are still the big environmental priorities.

Thursday, May 8, 2008

CCAN Delivers Mile-Long Petition for Clean Energy. Will Dominion Listen?

The Green Miles was in Richmond this afternoon for the Chesapeake Climate Action Network's rally at Kanawha Park! About 200 climate activists gathered in the shadow of Dominion Virginia Power's headquarters to deliver CCAN's Mile-Long Petition for Clean Energy.

It was a great mix of people, from college students to business people to community activists from Wise County, site of Dominion's proposed $1.8 billion coal-fired power plant. As Richmond City Councilman Marty Jewell told the crowd, we can't possibly hope to confront global warming if we're investing billions of our money in a power plant that would spew 5.4 million tons of greenhouse gases into our atmosphere every single year.

Strangely, there was a strong police presence, about a dozen officers including four mounted patrols. Were they worried we were going to go all Seattle WTO on them?

Not a strong presence - local media. One TV photojournalist came straggling in after the petitions had already been delivered and started videotaping the band. Better late than never, I guess?

Check out more photos from the event!

Delivering CCAN's Mile-Long Petition for Clean Energy

The Green Miles is heading to Richmond today as the Chesapeake Climate Action Network delivers its Mile-Long Petition for Clean Energy to Dominion Virginia Power. I'll be wearing my Dominion: Global Warming Starts Here t-shirt. Hope to see you there!

Wednesday, May 7, 2008

2008 Rankings: King of Beers Tops the High Life

New rankings are out from, which rates the brands you buy based on their efforts to reduce their environmental impact.

It's a quick-and-easy way to become a good climate consumer. As The Green Miles pointed out last year, as long as it's cold, who cares which light beer you're drinking? Get the one that does the best job on climate action.

Among the changes in this year's report:
- Nike passed last year’s high scorer, Canon, to become the top scored company

- Google, Anheuser-Busch and Levi Strauss had the largest score improvement

- Five companies scored one or zero points:
  • Jones Apparel Group (Anne Klein, Dockers, Nine West)
  • Burger King
  • Darden Restaurants (Red Lobster and Olive Garden)
  • Yum! Brands (Taco Bell, Pizza Hut and KFC)
  • Wendy’s
Fast food companies generally scored horribly. Starbucks did well and McDonald's did OK. Not that you treehuggers eat much fast food anyway, but it's good to keep in mind next time you're stopping for a bite to eat on your next road trip.

Anheuser-Busch's improvement was enough to put it past SAB Miller as the
top major brewery. Sorry, Miller Lite -- The Green Miles will be drinking Bud Light at Nats Park this year (and recycling the bottles).

Tuesday, May 6, 2008

Snakes in a Drain

Did a stream cleanup on Saturday with Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment and Arlington CRM at Four Mile Run through Barcroft Park: Plastic and styrofoam containers are usually among the most common items found. They're thrown on the street or are blown out of trash cans and wash down into the stream: What kills me is that virtually all of the water and soda bottles we found had caps on them. Like the person who bought them said, "I don't care enough to make sure this bottle gets in the trash and stays there. But I'm not careless - I'm keeping the cap on!"

This is the really gross part, though. Get up close to the bank of virtually any Arlington stream and this is what you'll see:
Cigarette butts and tiny bits of styrofoam. After years of doing these cleanups, I've pretty much given up on collecting cigarette butts and styrofoam peanuts. You could spend all day going through it with a fine-toothed comb and never get it all. Gotta focus on the big stuff, and there's plenty of that to keep you busy.

At the end of the cleanup, I went to cross Four Mile Run at a raised concrete ridge, the remnants of the Army Corps of Engineers' efforts to solve Four Mile Run's flooding problems by turning it into a giant storm drain. As I was about to turn onto the ridge, I noticed a snake about a yard away from my ankle, sunning itself in a piece of rebar: I'm not sure who got out of the way faster, me or the snake. But as you can see, it wasn't exactly cowering in terror, just waiting for me to move on:

I turned around and there was another snake in the water, this one much smaller: Any snake experts out there able to identify what kind these may be? The coloration and size seem to match up well with the glossy crayfish snake, but Arlington seems out of their range.

UPDATE: Commenter suggests a plainbelly water snake, what do you think?

Monday, May 5, 2008

Cool Idea: Carrotmob Rewards Going Green

Best line: "CFLs and bourbon, together at last ... somebody had to do it."

Close second: Cage-free toothbrushes.

Carrotmob Makes It Rain from carrotmob on Vimeo.

Found on the CCAN blog.

Friday, May 2, 2008


From Bill Maher's Earth Day entry at
[S]upermarket clerks must stop putting the big bottle of detergent with a handle on it in a plastic bag. I don't mean to tell you how to do your job, but you see that handle you just lifted the detergent with? I can use that same handle to carry the detergent to my car. And stop putting my liquor in a smaller paper sack before you put it in the big paper sack with my other stuff. What, are you afraid my groceries will think less of me if they see I've been drinking? Trust me, the broccoli doesn't care, and the condoms already know.
And it's with that completely inappropriate introduction that I give you the brand new Arlingtonians for a Clean Environment reusable bag!

To celebrate, ACE is having a kickoff party:

BYOBag Kickoff Ceremony
Sunday, May 18, 1 to 4 p.m.
Market Commons, 2800 Clarendon Blvd., Arlington
  • Join us we kickoff our campaign to promote the use of reusable bags and the many problems with plastics in our environment. This (rescheduled) event will be part of the Market Commons Spring Fling. The student winners of our BYOBag poster contest will also be recognized.
  • We'll have free ACE Living Green BYOBags for the first 50 visitors. The spring fling will also include music and kids' activities.
  • We need volunteers for our table. Contact us at or 703-228-6427.
To learn more about why reusable bags are so much better for the environment than either paper or plastic bags, check out this post from The Green Miles archive.