Book Picks for Green Communities II

Amanda Luker Arise! Bookstore and Resource Center Animal, Vegetable, Miracle: A Year of Food Life, Barbara Kingsolver, Camille Kingsolver, Steven L. Hopp, HarperCollins, 2007. With characteristic poetry and pluck, Barbara Kingsolver and her family sweep readers along on their journey away from the industrial-food pipeline to a rural life in …

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Christianity and Sustainability

Daniel LaMere Steiger House During the Eighties it was not uncommon for the fashionable sit-com characters to declare with liberated confidence, “these are the Eighties, after all,” announcing to everyone that we had arrived. We were a liberated people. It was an exciting time. Perhaps, though, we were too excited …

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Citizens Can Prevent Detrimental Development: Environmental Assessment & Citizen Petition Process In Minnesota

Jessie Houlihan Do It Green! Minnesota Each year development continues to encroach upon open spaces in Minnesota. Regardless of where you live, you can probably think of a development nearby that was constructed on land that was degraded by the construction, such as wetlands or special animal habitat. In order …

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Eco & Activist Book Recommendations

Amanda Luker Arise! Bookstore Our Way or the Highway: Inside the Minnehaha Free State by Mary Losure. This year marks the tenth anniversary of the Minnehaha Free State, the longest urban occupation in US history. On the coldest night of the year in 1998, over 600 police brutalized and arrested …

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How Green is Minnesota’s Government?

Sarah Ruth Lorenz How “green” is Minnesota’s government? Answering this question could involve examining various bills and polices. One needs to be cognizant of bills that have gained the legislature’s approval or what policies that are being enforced by state agencies, such as the Department of Natural Resources (DNR), the …

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How to Get Your Representatives to Listen

Paul Gardner Minnesota House of Representative (District 53A) With electronic communications readily available at the State Capitol, it is easier than ever to share your views with your legislator. Constituents—not lobbyists, not legislative leadership, not the parties—are the highest priority to a legislator. But what’s the best way to get them …

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Local Environmental Agencies

Mark Snyder & Shea Peeples MN OEA & Minneapolis Public Library This article describes some of the government agencies that can help those of us seeking to improve our environment and what they have to offer. At the local level, each Minnesota county has an office that oversees solid waste …

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Make a Difference and Make It Fun!

Ami Voeltz Do It Green! Minnesota “Never doubt that a small group of thoughtful, committed citizens can change the world. Indeed, it’s the only thing that ever has.” —Margaret Mead There is a new type of environmental activism in the air-along with protests, lobbying, letter writing, and campaigns, there are …

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Make a Difference by Writing Elected Officials

Diane Loeffler Minnesota State Representative Letters and emails do make a difference! As a first term state legislator, I take time to read each one that comes in — an overwhelming volume of input that keeps me in touch with the concerns of those I represent. They are also often …

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Minneapolis Residents Tackle Climate Change

Beth Bennett Center for Energy and Environment In 2007, the city of Minneapolis became the first city in the country to fund small grants for its residents to prevent climate change. The grants garnered tremendous success; Minneapolis residents pledged to prevent over 8.2 million pounds of carbon dioxide emissions annually …

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Non-Violence as a Way of Life

Lenief Heimstead Friends for a Non-Violent World Advocates of non-violence think of it in two ways: as a way of life for individuals and communities and as a strategy in political conflict situations. In either case, it stands in contrast to its opposite, violence, and it typically rests on a …

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Public Financing of Political Candidates & Parties

Eric Makela Green Party of Minnesota Public financing is a system where a government provides candidates or political parties with money to help fund their campaigns or operations. It’s designed to help eliminate the negative impact that comes along with private contributions and special interests. It also levels the playing …

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The Power of Thinking Small — How Individual Actions Contribute to the Passing of State Legislation

Cesia Kearns Conservation Organizer, Sierra Club North Star Chapter “If you believe that one person cannot make a difference, try sleeping with a mosquito in the room.” —South African Proverb Good environmental policy results from cooperative effort between many parties, but the actions of individuals are no less crucial. Without …

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Top 10 Environmental News & Tips Sources

Do It Green! Minnesota LOCAL 1. Do It Green! Magazine, Web Database & E-Newsletter www.doitgreen.org 2. Minnesota Sustainable Communities Network (MnSCN) E-Newsletter www.nextstep.state.mn.us/update.cfm 3. Organic Consumers Association E-Newsletter (Organic Bytes) www.organicconsumers.org/organicbytes.htm 4. Canadian E-newsletter www.eartheasy.com 5. Local newspapers NATIONAL 6. Grist E-Magazine www.grist.org 7. E/The Environmental Magazine www.emagazine.com 8. Union …

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What’s the Green Scoop on Political Parties

Keith Pille For better or worse, the American political system is rooted very strongly in the tradition of a two-party system. Many “green” advocates are left to wonder whether their best course of action is to work within one of the two major parties, the Republicans and Democrats, which are …

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You Be the Judge: Set Up Your Own Congressional Scorecard

Sara Grochowski Do It Green! Minnesota The U.S. Public Interest Research Group (“PIRG”) is on a mission. Among their work in twenty-six states including Minnesota, they uncover threats to public health and well-being and fight to end them. They also create what they call a congressional scorecard. This scorecard reviews …

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