Meet Brian Blum, a busy dad with a full time corporate job, who still makes time to create a sustainable paradise in San Diego. He has a small house on a small lot but manages to do a lot with it. He grows healthy, organic food for his family and has planted close to 20 fruit trees, which are part of his permaculture food forest.
Welcome to Punta Mona, the land of freedom. It’s a tropical paradise off-the-grid in the Caribbean Jungle of Costa Rica.There are no roads here. You arrive by boat or hike 2 hours through primary rainforest. Stephen Brooks, who left suburban Miami to create a new way of life, founded the community in 1995.
This urban foraging program is giving fresh fruits and veggies to thousands of people in need, and it’s all food that would have otherwise gone to waste. Millions of Americans have little to no access to fresh fruits and vegetables. Concrete Jungle is changing that by giving out freshly picked produce for free!
Meet the Composters on Bikes!
Let Us Compost is a curbside composting service for homes, businesses, and events. They started in 2012 with one truck and this year they began picking up by bike. They currently pick up from over 170 homes and businesses. Customers are given a bucket, kitchen pail, and biodegradable bags when they sign up.
There are many limiting ideas floating around out there about growing your own food. Many think you need a lot of money to do it. Some think it’s too time consuming. Some think they don’t have enough space. Others feel that they just don’t have a green enough thumb. All of these ideas are totally understandable but the reality is that if we really truly want to, we can all grow some food. Sure, we can’t all have a fruitful acre of farm land but we can all have at least one little windowsill herb garden, one balcony tomato plant, some planters on our porch, a plot in a community garden, a small garden on someone else’s unused land, or something of that sort. With some initiative we can all grow some food!
My first month of buying nothing new for a year was a success! I had a few challenging moments but made it out of the month having bought nothing new. This is largely a personal challenge for myself to see if I can make it a year without having to buy (or be given) anything new but it is also a means to inspire others to be more resourceful and find ways to meet their needs that do not involve going out and buying anything new. This is beneficial in many ways but my two personal favorites are the reduction of environmental impact and the reduction of money needed to live. It’s easy to just run out to the store or go online and buy anything we need because we live in a society that has made shopping very convenient, seemingly mentally rewarding, and almost seemingly necessary to just be a “normal” member of society. But the problem is that all of this stuff causes real environmental destruction and is the source to many of the most pressing and depressing environmental and social issues of our time. Simply not buying new stuff is one way to live a drastically more environmentally and socially conscious and responsible life. The Story of Stuff does an incredible job of showing how the cost of our cheap stuff is externalized to the natural environment and other people.
There’s no arguing that having a child is not the most environmentally sustainable thing to do. When I became a mother, it was important to me to maintain the integrity of my low-impact lifestyle and find ways to offset the carbon footprint of adding another human to the planet. My son is now six. Parenting him, like for so many, makes life personally sustainable and there is no underestimating the value in that choice. It’s also a daily opportunity to choose to live in harmony with the Earth with the compounded influence of teaching another person this value. Parenting is activism insofar as activism is making the world better.
Below are some suggestions that I use to raise my environmentalist. I would love to hear yours in the comments below!
As a mom of three I am admittedly always seeking the easy route. Just surviving the day to day can be an uphill battle. I care about our earth, and I want my children to grow up caring about it as well – but I’m TIRED. We’re far from perfect, but I’ve put together 10 ways to “go-green” that are realistic for growing families and actually save me time and energy – two things that as a parent are a rare commodity.