Some Things to Feel Good About- Clean Energy, LA's Gardens, and Recycling Cigarette Butts

by - Wednesday, April 13, 2016

I try to keep on top of the news around the environment, but I often cannot stand to read so much depressing news stories in a row. I am suspicious that this constant onslaught of bad news stomps out our motivation to try, because the problem just feels too big. On this blog, I am trying to propose an environmentalism that is personally sustainable- a bunch of little changes we can all keep up with, and I want to focus on the positive, not because I won't readily admit the problems we face are huge and important, but because good things are happening. It's worth focusing on and feeling empowered, because the changes we make CAN make a difference.

1. Clean Energy is Growing Faster than Ever Before- Fossil Fuels and energy companies are fighting back hard (I get that they are angry their demand is being depleted and they want their money, but maybe it's time to join the clean energy movement, not fight it?), but despite the efforts against green energy, it picked up massive steam (or winds or sunlight) in 2015. Clean energy isn't such a rarity anymore, and I am hoping my children will grow up in a world where it is even considered normal. It's an area where we know we can do better, so it's good to see lots of people are taking that leap, even if we have a long way to go (do you know Americans could get 40% of our energy from rooftop solar panels? that's awesome).

2. Parkway Gardens are approved by LA City Council- You may have heard in the news this week that some Canadian cities are fighting against front yard gardens. Well, they aren't alone, and lots of American cities have push back against front yard or "parkway" gardens. Thankfully, just this week, LA switched directions on this issue, and a city that certainly could be growing more of it's own food now can. Very big deal if you are part of the growing your own food movement (which this blog is all about this month! Let's hear it for growing even a tiny percentage of your own food!). Go curbside veggies!

3.Recycling Cigarette Butts- Dear loved ones who smoke, it is so gross. Also, I live in fear of you getting sick from those little sticks and having to have a hole in your throat. I hate it. I also hate it because it creates a shit ton of litter that gets in our water and is truly horrible for animals. Yuck. I love you. Quit smoking. On National Geographic, they talked about some new options for recycling cigarette butts. This is a nice solution to a TOTALLY UNNECESSARY environmental problem (quit smoking), but it is cool they are thinking about it.

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