Living Green

Monthly news and tips focused on helping you create a greener, healthier life for the world around you.


The single most important action you can take to protect Oregon’s climate, future

We need to elect pro-climate officials at every level to protect our environment and ensure a stable climate for future generations In a matter of days, tens of thousands of Oregonians were put under evacuation orders, thousands of families lost their homes, and nine people lost their lives. More than a million acres of precious Oregon lands--including critical carbon stores--were destroyed. Dense smoke led to air quality so beyond hazardous that public officials issued a statewide advisory instructing Oregonians to stay indoors. And here’s the kicker: if we do not ...

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Eco-healthy living-how to prepare your garden for fall

With the rainy season and school year in Oregon underway, Autumn is a great time to clean up garden beds, manage soil and compost, prepare sod and minimize problems in the new growing season. Fall garden clean up and winter preparation is essential to the long-term health of your yard and garden. Fall is a time to welcome change, preparation, and maturity. Here are some fun eco-friendly yard projects that you can do with school age children, in addition to new eco-healthy gardening tips and tutorials from our partners at Oregon Metro.  Overseeding Your Lawn So...

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Advancing Equity in Transportation Systems

We know that our transportation system is not equitable. A system centered on moving vehicles, not people and goods, is not equitable. Most of us don’t think about “transportation” as an issue. We think about our commute, our errands, our trip to drop the kids off at school. Transportation is so completely woven into our lives that we don’t think about it separately. We also don’t question whether the way we get around could be different, or should be different. It just is the way it is, right? Because of this, we often can’t see how the way it is ...

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Nearly 1/2 of the food packaging tested from popular chains contain “forever chemicals”

There is no shortage of toxics entering our bodies these days, between wildfire smoke, chemicals from consumer products, and now toxics in our food packaging. A new study published last month, Packaged in Pollution: Are food chains using PFAS in packaging?, by OEC’s partners Toxic Free Future and the Safer Chemicals Healthy Families coalition concluded that nearly half of the food packaging used from popular chains contain toxic PFAS (per- and polyfluoroalkyl substances) (“forever chemicals”)—despite increasing consumer demand and legislative action to phase ...

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Climate Change, Economic Justice and Wildfires Collide

The West Continues to Burn Amidst a Pandemic and Heatwave The current wildfire situation is changing so fast in Oregon, that I have updated this blog no less than four times. Wildfires continue to wreak havoc and destruction across the West. As I type, the sky is filled with smoke, and the sun is an eerie shade of fiery orange-red. Gov. Brown has declared a state of emergency and State Fire Marshal leadership has advised that Oregonians from areas across the state be prepared to evacuate at a moment’s notice. This is not a movie set during the apocalypse: this is our ...

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Tell Oregon Department of Transportation How You Want Funds Allocated

We need to see ODOT prioritize climate and equity in its investments. The year 2027 may seem far off now, but the Oregon Department of Transportation is making policy decisions now about how it will spend its money then. We can influence whether those decisions prioritize climate impacts or just go further down an already unsustainable path. ODOT is beginning work now to develop the next Statewide Transportation Improvement Program (STIP), which is the list of projects that ODOT will work on in 2024 through 2027. These projects include building new infrastructure like ...

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Toxic Free Kids Act in its final implementation stages!

Due to TFKA’s reporting requirements, we have discovered toxic chemicals in thousands of children’s toys and personal care products. Requiring reporting and phaseouts of these chemicals will lead manufacturers to develop better, safer products. 

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Is It Time To Rethink Public Transportation in Our Post-Pandemic World?

As we look to the future, we need to make sure that transit (along biking and walking and the like) is a big part of our transportation system.

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Save money on groceries and reduce your carbon footprint at the same time

Reducing food waste can save consumers money and help Oregon meet its climate goals-- now that’s what we call a double win!

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Let’s wipe out a costly foible in the bathroom

Disposable wipes can seriously jam up your sewage system, and not only is the repair costly, but what greets as the plumbers pull out the mess, is just yuck.

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