Top notch documentaries:
Dirt! Positive and inspiring activists focus on permaculture as a regenerative solution to the destructive practices of industrial agriculture. Full length. Good for older kids and adults.
Symphony of the Soil An amazing journey from mineral formation, through the high tech green revolution, to the interwoven threads of agroecology as told by inspired scientists and farmers across the globe. Learn the science, history, and future of our soil and soak up some hope for the future of human societies. Full length. Good for older kids and adults.
The Story of Bottled Water Annie Leonard, now with Greenpeace, tells the story of how "big water" manufactures demand and convinces Americans to buy more than half a billion bottles of water every week -- usually drawn for free from municipal or groundwater sources -- for thousands of times the price. Leonard encourages us to "take back the tap" and quit buying bottled water. About 5 mins. Good for all ages especially kids.
Flow: For the Love of Water Stories and interviews focus on water issues around the globe with an emphasis on the impacts of dams and the privatization of water by multinationals. Rainwater capture efforts in India, Lesotho, and Austin receive brief treatment. Full length. Good for older kids and adults.
Transportation is the number one contributor to carbon emissions in our region. Electric and hybird vehicles are more affordable, reliable, and far ranging than ever. They are also a blast to drive! Check out the Chevy Volt, Nissan Leaf, Toyota Prius, and, for fat wallets, Tesla.
Electrical vehicle charging stations are popping up all over the state as well as locally in downtown parking lots, shopping areas, and on campus:
UCD map of campus charging stations
E Street Plaza bet. E and F and 2nd and 3rd
4th & G Parking Garage 4th street entrance
Davis Amtrak Station 2nd and G
Hanlees Toyota 4202 Chiles Rd
University Honda 4343 Chiles Rd
Mace Park and Ride Mace at HW 80
Wildhorse Golf Club 2323 Rockwell Dr
University Covenant Church 315 Mace Blvd
PlugShare is a map-based website/app that shows public, high power, and shared chargers (5 residences in Davis) and more.
Caulk: Smart Brand, White Paintable Latex Window and Door Caulk, available at Hibbert's Lumber
PVC Glue: Gorilla Brand PVC glue is low VOC and super easy to use.
Rebates for Householders
Save Our Water
State of California
The State of California is offering some very generous rebates for turf conversion and toilet upgrades. Check out all the resources at www.saveourwaterrebates.com.
EcoAssistant business cards are produced with soy and vegetable-based zero-VOC inks (volatile organic compounds) as well as chemical and chlorine free plate processing. They sport a non-toxic aqueous coating and are made with Forest Stewardship Council and Green-e certified, 100% recycled (post consumer) paper products.
According to a 2014 report and scorecard generated by Ceres, a non-profit organization that advocates for leadership in sustainability, The Hartford is the only US-headquartered property and casualty insurance company to earn a "Leading" rating. The authors were "especially pleased" with The Hartford's "leadership practices [used] in assessing and protecting themselves and their clients from climate change risks."
Personal Care and Hygiene
Check out the Environmental Working Group website and their Skin Deep database for detailed information about safe personal care products.
Our Davis co-op carries Acure and Everyday Shea shampoo and other products (scoring 1 for low hazard although "limited" for data in Skin Deep database). These are low in sodium as well.
Bar shampoos at the co-op made by hand with whole ingredients include J. R. Liggett's, made in New Hampshire, and Camamu made in Portland, Oregon, with a Rosemary Nettle shampoo bar that claims to relieve dandruff. (Informal test in progress.)
Dr. Bronner's products can be used as a shampoo, hand soap, dish soap, and a body wash. (All score 1 for low hazard.)
Safest shampoos and shampoo bar brands listed on Skin Deep database: enkido, Ethiks, Soap for Goodness Sake, and Radiantly You (all scoring 1 for low hazard and fair for data).
Aloe vera restores skin and relieves irritations (aloe barbadensis leaf extract). Grow your own or buy 99%.
Colloidal oatmeal, or finely ground oats suspended in liquid, is commonly used for a variety of skin irritations. Simple make-your-own instructions.
Avoid all those chemicals by cleaning your home the non-toxic way! Baking soda is a fantastic overall cleanser (check the label for its myriad uses), vinegar works quite well as a sanitizer, hydrogen peroxide is super for stains, and rubbing alcohol is a tried and true disinfectant.
Landscape Friendly Products for Greywater
Laundry Systems: Oasis is the original greywater safe laundry soap brand. Art Ludwig could create nothing less! Now there are many more claiming to be greywater safe as listed on the Greywater Action website: Oasis, ECOS, Vaska, Trader Joe's, Puretergent, and BioPac.
Avoid products with high sodium content and do not use boron/borax. Always use liquid laundry soaps with greywater systems.
Shower/Tub Systems: The shampoos and bars listed under personal hygiene are either very low or absent of sodium. Look for neutral pH as well as most bar soaps are too alkaline for soil health.
Non-toxic cleaning products mentioned above can be safely used with greywater systems as well.
Art Ludwig: Greywater Pioneer
Art Ludwig is the original inventor of the laundry to landscape greywater concept. His book, Create an Oasis with Greywater, is considered the Bible of greywater. His website oasisdesign.net contains a plethora of useful information and diagrams. Art is also the creator of Oasis laundry detergent.