What Being Green Means

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These days, it seems, everyone is “going green.” But the truth is, few people actually know what being green means. To some, being green means spending a bunch of cash or having an all-hemp wardrobe. The panel at March’s CRAVE Chat on “Going Green and Giving Back,” want you to know that’s all bullsh*t.

CRAVE Chat, the national, all-female, monthly talks hosted in Chicago by the city’s uber-connecter, Saya Hillman, has built quite a following. I attended March’s chat excited to hear from the stellar lineup of “green” professionals.  Here’s what I gathered:

Think Inside the compost heap.

Panel speaker, Stephanie Davies a.k.a. “The Urban Woman Girl,” educates individuals and corporations on how to be green via composting. The Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) states on their website that, “Composting organic materials that have been diverted from landfills ultimately avoids the production of methane and leachate formulation in the landfills.”

Want to compost but live in a tiny apartment? Not a problem. Vermicomposting, or worm composting, requires minimal space and resources and is perfect for city living.

Upgrade your bulbs.

Chicago restaurant staple, Uncommon Ground, knows a thing or two about what being green means. The restaurant was dubbed the greenest restaurant in America by the Green Restaurant Association and is a part of the Green Chicago Restaurant Coalition. Panel speaker and Co-owner of Uncommon Ground, Helen Cameron, says some of the bulbs in her restaurant are over 10 years old.

The New York Times reports that at $10, long lasting LED light bulbs are no longer the financial drain they once were. Here’s a great list of LED brands to fit your preference.

Find your “green” passion.

So, worms aren’t your thing? Already changed your light bulbs? Continue your pursuit of what being green means. Panel speaker and architect, Katherine Darnstadt of Latent Design, is passionate about designing green spaces that create a social, economic, and environmental impact beyond the building.

Other great sustainable living resources include:

The Chicago Conservation Corps

Chicago Green Festival

Sustainable Living Center

Zealous Good promotes sustainable living by connecting excess items to local nonprofits in need. Donation is a great and simple way to start going green!

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