The Great White Way went green last week. Wicked’s witch and NYC’s Mayor Michael Bloomberg took the stage together to announce a dramatic partnership between the energy-sucking theater district and the city’s Office of Long-Term Planning and Sustainability. However, the Broadway League was already working with NRDC’s Allen Hershkowitz to lower its carbon footprint. Initiatives include energy-efficient CFL and LED bulbs, costumes cleaned in eco-suds and cold water, and aches soothed with bags of frozen peas instead of chemical ice packs. At the St. James theatre alone, 600 marquee lights went from 25 watts each to five watts per light. Bravo!

The White House aims to be more eco-efficient, too, once President-elect Barack Obama moves in. He told Barbara Walters in an interview last week that he plans to turn off the lights and unplug electronics at 1600 Pennsylvania Avenue, just like his family does in their Chicago digs. Too bad Reagan removed Jimmy Carter’s solar panels. Meanwhile, Pope Benedict had 2,400 solar panels installed at the Vatican last week.

On the cover of the next issue of Architectural Digest, the luxe home mag takes a turn for the green with Brad Pitt on the cover and a feature on his Make It Right eco-housing development in New Orleans.

Among other bits of green news, Transformers Josh Duhamel joined a scientific excursion with Polar Bears International to bear witness to the ravages of global warming in Canada’s tundra. He’ll record a PSA for the org.

Watch for Anderson Cooper’s award-winning Planet in Peril series next week on CNN. Meanwhile, NBC/Universal cancelled the Weather Channel’s Forecast Earth series, ironically during the network’s Green Week.

Due to the siege in Mumbai last week, the Live Earth India concert planned for December 7 with Bon Jovi, Roger Waters, will.i.am and Bollywood’s best performers was cancelled in honor of the victims of the attack and the grieving country.  

Story by Roberta Cruger. This article originally appeared in Plenty in December 2008.

Copyright Environ Press 2008