Happy Earth Day, MNN readers! Needless to say, you should strive to give Mother Nature a big fist bump in one way or another every day, but today just happens to be the day to take it up a notch and celebrate. And by celebrate I mean putting yourself out there and taking action to improve your home, your community, your world. Or, take today to rest and reflect. How have you changed over the past year? What actions have you taken at home to tread more lightly on the environment? Will you be making any Earth Day resolutions?
In addition to catching up on the below green home news links this Earth Day/Easter weekend, be sure to check out my recent community-centric Earth Day coverage. Recent posts include a story on how concerned residents banded together to halt a major source of air pollution in my own Brooklyn neighborhood; a story on how residents on a street in Brighton, U.K., are keeping very public tabs on household energy consumption; and a story on how a remarkable NYC-based environmental nonprofit is encouraging citizen activists to get involved and green their own communities through a bit of old fashioned "reimagination."
I'll be back on Monday with a final Earth Day post about Big Green Theater, a unique environmental education/community theater program. As always, thanks for reading and don't forget to keep Dude the Chocolate Easter Bunny in your thoughts ...
The Miami Heralds resorts to potty talk (paging Rand Paul) in an article that addresses common problems with low-flow toilets and how to fix/avoid them. For one, don't throw cigarette butts, lotto tickets, or paper towels down them, folks. Also, it helps to not use harsh, chemical cleaning products.
Curbed Seattle (welcome!) indulges your "Sleepless in Seattle" fantasies with a look at houseboats currently for sale in the Emerald City. I'll take the two-bedroom vessel — complete with Subzero fridge, spiral staircase and resident baby ducks — moored at 2143 N. Northlake Way, please.
TreeHugger examines the environment impact of backyard chickens because, yes, even this advanced act of green living does come with consequences. Writes Sami Grover: "... I get a little nervous when folks start talking about backyard hens as a key element of 'self-sufficiency.' The way some greenies talk about them, it's almost as if these beautiful creatures offer a magical ticket to emission-free eating. Yet it's important to remember that pretty much nothing we do is without its environmental impact."
The New York Times rounds up a few choice picks from this year's Milan Furniture Fair — all lovely stuff.
The Los Angeles Times talks low-impact living with domestic doyenne and my Earth Day Buddy, Martha Stewart. Stewart herself has given up bottled water, composts, recycles paper, feeds food scraps to her chickens, and takes it easy with her thermostats.
The Daily Green announces the 2011 Heart of Green Award Winners. On the list are "Local Heroes" Allison and Jillian Samowitz of Golden Beach, Fla. Super motivated and only 14 years old, the twin sisters are behind Proseed2Green, an eco-organization with the mission "to develop environmental programs with community participation that will have a positive impact, locally and globally, and that are fiscally responsible." Congrats, ladies!
Re-Nest instructs on how to clear out household clutter and crap using two key tools: patience and an open mind.
The Chicago Tribune uncovers an unfortunate drawback to green buildings that boast abundant windows meant to bring in natural light and save energy: They act as avian death traps. According to the Tribune, the American Bird Conservancy and other groups are working with the USGBC to develop a pilot program that gives LEED-seeking architects points for migratory bird-friendly design.
Grist enlists none other than the flame-haired eco-advice giver herself, Umbra Fisk, to answer a burning question submitted from Deborah of New Bedford, Mass.: what's a good, green housewarming gift?
ReadyMade heads to the garden, iPhone in one hand, shovel in the other, to review "5 DIY Gardening Apps You Can Actually Use." On the list: Garden to Do, The Vegetable Gardening Guide, Botanical Interests, iGrowit, and, last but not least, Bugs and Insects.