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Lyft’s autonomous electric vehicles will run on 100% renewable energy

One of the leading on-demand ridesharing companies has committed to charging its forthcoming autonomous electric vehicle fleet with electricity from renewable sources. […]

6 essential etiquette rules for great coworking spaces

Coworking spaces are a step up from working out of the local coffee shop, but there are some common-sense rules for good behavior to help keep everyone’s experience pleasant. […]

Can you be zero-waste without a bulk store nearby?

When you live in the country, not everything can be purchased in a Mason jar. […]

Trump Budget Would Wipe Out Land Protection

The budget which President Trump proposed today shows a complete and reckless disregard for our environment and the public lands used for recreation by millions of American families. If enacted by Congress, these cuts and program eliminations would wreak havoc on our outdoor economy and the millions of jobs it supports in our local communities, and will undermine cities and towns working right now to create a clean and healthy future.There is absolutely no economic justification for proposals that pull the rug out from ongoing collaborative local, state and federal efforts aimed at supporting parks, trails and other outdoor recreation needs and addressing the local impacts of climate change.For example, his proposal to virtually wipe out the funding that protects our national parks and public lands is completely out of step with America’s values and ignores the broad bipartisan support in Congress for the Land and Water Conservation Fund (LWCF). This is a slap in the face to millions of American families who use the outdoors for recreation, and rely on it for their livelihood. Since the LWCF began in 1965, it has been one of America’s most effective conservation programs.The conservation of our national parks and outdoor heritage has always been an area where all Americans agree, whether they vote Democratic, Republican, or independent. Our public lands have always been central to who we are, dating back to the protection of Yellowstone in 1872 as the world’s first national park. The lands we all own together are used by virtually all American families, whether they are hiking, fishing, hunting, camping, riding bikes, or enjoying the outdoors. […]

On Mother’s Day And Beyond, Moms Can Lead The Way In Getting Kids Outdoors

As moms, we can’t wait for this Sunday’s holiday, filled with adorable homemade craft projects, meals with family, and lots of hugs. For our families, spending time outdoors is another way of sharing some love – love of our families and of our natural world. It turns out we’re not alone. According to a new report, moms play a pivotal role in inspiring a passion for the outdoors in the next generation. We love taking our kids (Mary Anne’s daughter Hazel is 7 and Jackie’s son Dylan is almost 2) into the woods and to our local waterways. We all love camping, hiking, gardening, and biking together, and it’s truly magical to see the outdoors through a child’s eyes. […]

Chicago just posted all the climate data deleted by Trump’s EPA.

It’s not often you meet someone who doubles as a mathematician and a professional chef. But Hari Pulapaka, a tenured professor and four-time James Beard Award semifinalist, says his careers are a natural pair; they both demand problem-solving and a lot of creativity. Now, he’s tapping those skills to tackle a big issue in the food industry: waste.

Pulapaka was raised in a family of five kids, in working class Bombay, India. They ate modestly and didn’t throw much away — just banana peels and the occasional potato skin. But in American culinary school, almost half the food was tossed out, he says. “It blew my mind.”

Now at the helm of Cress restaurant in DeLand, Florida, Pulapaka is setting a better example. In the last four years, he and his wife have cut down a huge amount of food waste: about 16,000 pounds, he says. They’ve done it by engaging their community. Every week, a local farmer swings by to pick up Cress’s food scraps for pig and chicken feed, as well as compost. That same farmer then sells vegetables at the local farmer’s market, grown in — yup, you guessed it — Pulapaka’s compost. Pulapaka also recycles his cooking oil and uses every part of his vegetables and fish. Stuff that other restaurants throw out, like veggie tops, pop up in Cress’s pestos, chutneys, salsa verdes, sauces, and soups, he says.

Pulapaka sets an inspiring (and exhausting) example. “I can’t work at this pace forever,” he says. So what’s next? Maybe opening his own cooking school. You can bet his students won’t be throwing much away.


Meet all the fixers on this year’s Grist 50.

[…]

You can expect Neil Gorsuch to be bad news for the environment.

Catherine Flowers has been an environmental justice fighter for as long as she can remember. “I grew up an Alabama country girl,” she says, “so I was part of the environmental movement before I even knew what it was. The natural world was my world.”

In 2001, raw sewage leaked into the yards of poor residents in Lowndes County, Alabama, because they had no access to municipal sewer systems. Local government added insult to injury by threatening 37 families with eviction or arrest because they couldn’t afford septic systems. Flowers, who is from Lowndes County, fought back: She negotiated with state government, including then-Alabama Senator Jeff Sessions, to end unfair enforcement policies, and she enlisted the Environmental Protection Agency’s help to fund septic systems. The effort earned her the nickname “The Erin Brockovich of Sewage.”

Flowers was continuing the long tradition of residents fighting for justice in Lowndes County, an epicenter for the civil rights movement. “My own parents had a rich legacy of fighting for civil rights, which to this day informs my work,” she says. “Even today, people share stories about my parents’ acts of kindness or help, and I feel it’s my duty to carry on their work.”

Years later, untreated and leaking sewage remains a persistent problem in much of Alabama. Flowers advocates for sanitation and environmental rights through the organization she founded, the Alabama Center for Rural Enterprise Community Development Corporation (ACRE, for short). She’s working with the EPA and other federal agencies to design affordable septic systems that will one day eliminate the developing-world conditions that Flowers calls Alabama’s “dirty secret.”

Former Vice President Al Gore counts himself as a big fan of Flowers’ work, calling her “a firm advocate for the poor, who recognizes that the climate crisis disproportionately affects the least wealthy and powerful among us.” Flowers says a soon-to-be-published study, based on evidence she helped collect, suggests that tropical parasites are emerging in Alabama due to poverty, poor sanitation, and climate change. “Our residents can have a bigger voice,” she said, “if the media began reporting how climate change is affecting people living in poor rural communities in 2017.” Assignment editors, pay attention.


Meet all the fixers on this year’s Grist 50.

[…]