For Auld Lang Syne

Green leaders share their 2008 New Year’s eco-lutions

By Tobin Hack

Only a little more than a month remains until that special time of the year when you make your annual New Year’s resolutions – lose 50 pounds in two days, organize entire life, write daily letters of love and appreciation to parents, exercise twice daily, read three books per week, give up chocolate – and then promptly break them. But these green leaders are tougher than your average resoluter: They go to the office everyday and stand up against climate change, Big Oil, environmental illiteracy in America, and the full force of our generally wasteful culture. So we’re confident that they’ll stick to their outside-the-box eco resolutions this New Year. Here’s what they vow to do in 2008:

Ashley Ahearn
Associate Producer, PRI’s Living on Earth

In the spirit of the ever-abandoned commitment to lose weight, I'm going to eat less so I can spend more money on organic/free-range/locally grown food.  I'm going to stop making fun of crunchy, Birkenstock-wearing hippies driving their holier-than-thou Priuses and figure out how to retro-fit my bro's 1984 VW vanagon for biofuel so I can drive cross country guilt-free.  I'm going to start carrying a travel mug for my thrice-daily caffeine injections.  And even though I may cringe in embarrassment purchasing condoms from my local CVS (beacon-hill biddies be damned!) I'm NOT going to let them give me a plastic bag because damn it, sea turtles are cool and that shit's never gonna biodegrade.  Although now that I think about it... condoms probably aren’t much better.  Do they make biodegradable condoms?  Would that even work?  HAPPY NEW YEAR!

Kathy Moser
Acting Executive Director, The Nature Conservancy, New York State Chapter

My eco-resolution for 2008 is to cut my air and car travel by 10%, tune up my bike and use it more for short trips, and cook my family one meal each month using all local (Hudson Valley) products.   I also want to make sure my kids and friends learn more about what they can do to reduce their carbon footprint. 

Lauren Sullivan
Co-founder, Reverb

Since Reverb works with so many touring artists to help run their buses and trucks on biodiesel, my husband, Adam Gardner, and I are going to finally do the same in our own lives. We plan to buy a diesel car in 2008, which we'll run on 100% biodiesel. We're excited to support a new business in our hometown, Portland, ME, called Maine Biofuels, which collects grease that restaurants throw out, and processes it into ASTM-Certified B100.  Biofuels that are made of local waste oil are one of the keys to a secure, sustainable energy future.

Crissy Trask
Author, It’s Easy Being Green

To conserve water, last year I removed my entire front lawn and replaced it with low-water plants and permeable paths. In 2008, I plan to remove a large portion of my back lawn and replace it with food-bearing plants and trees. When I’m finished, only about 15% of my city lot will be turf grass!

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