by Kelly Caiazzo May 22, 2019 cancer carcinogens and toxic chemicals cleaners cosmetics everyday products family health Household it matters labels lawn care safety Stink! sunscreen values vote
Thank you to all who attended the Sustainable Wellesley and Wellesley Natural Resources Commission documentary screening of Stink!.
We packed the Wakelin Room with approximately 70 attendees in honor of Rachel Carson Day on May 27th. That’s a lot more people who are now aware of the fragrance loophole and lack of regulation of known carcinogens and toxic chemicals in our everyday products!
Vote your values! As helpful as it is to know how to buy safer products personally, sweeping change happens when busy consumers don’t need to do their homework because of protective legislation. If the film resonated with you, consider making chemical regulations and transparency part of your voting agenda.
Below are some resources to help simplify the process of making safer consumer choices. Because kids should be worried about what’s on their pancakes, not what’s in their pajamas!
Apps for the phone:
Silent Springs Institute App, Detox Me: https://silentspring.org/
Environmental Working Group App, Healthy Living: https://www.ewg.org/
Oeko-Tex certification: https://www.
oeko-tex.com/en/consumer/ consumers_home/consumers_home. xhtml
Avoid flame retardants, look for pajamas that say “wear snug fitting, doesn’t contain flame retardant”
Tip: Google “oeko-tex certified _____” to find products, you’ll often discover brands and companies that way for everything from sheets to shirts
The Environmental Working Group’s Skin Deep Database: https://www.ewg.org/
The Campaign for Safe Cosmetics: http://www.
The Environmental Working Group Guide to Healthy Cleaners: https://www.ewg.org/
12 Homemade Cleaning Products that work from HuffPost (careful with vinegar on porous surfaces like marble): https://www.huffpost.com/
entry/12-homemade-cleaning- products-that-really-really- work_n_ 57853926e4b0e05f0523a9db
Books like Zero Waste Home by Bea Johnson have recipes for making homemade cleaners, and the Wellesley Free Library has titles like Green Housekeeping by Christina Strutt and Natural Solutions for Cleaning & Wellness by Hallie Cottis.
Someone asked specifically about dishwasher pacs – I use this powder in my dishwasher, but there are dishwasher pods & pouches listed in the EWG guide as well.
Look for sunscreens labeled “reef safe” and avoid oxybenzone and octinoxate in particular
EWG Sunscreen Guide: https://www.ewg.org/sunscreen/
Video about Healthy Yards in Wellesley: https://www.
Organic Landscapers that Service Wellesley: http://www.
sustainablewellesley.com/ organic-landscapers-servicing- wellesley/
Letter from the Wellesley Board of Health and NRC about toxic lawn chemicals: https://
wellesleyma.gov/ DocumentCenter/View/14672/ Joint-Letter-from-the-Board- of-Health-and-NRC-about- Pesticides-in-Wellesley- 2019pdf
EWG guide to label decoding: https://www.ewg.org/
Stink! documentary resources page: https://stinkmovie.com/
Silent Spring Institute: https://
Sustainable Wellesley: www.sustainablewellesley.com
Wellesley Natural Resources Commission: https://
Consider googling soap nuts (soap berries) for laundry – some attendees have had great success, one person recommended ones originating from Nepal
When speaking to people to encourage environmental change, using language like “Would you consider…” is less likely to put them on the defensive. A great tip for initiating respectful conversations!
Additional questions: Please don’t hesitate to e-mail me if you’re having difficulty finding a product replacement or have questions. I’m not an expert, but I am an enthusiast who has found a lot of resources who are experts. I am happy to point you in the right direction or dive into the problem solving with you to find a solution that works. firstname.lastname@example.org
There’s also a local Facebook group where people swap resources and problem solve together to find more environmental solutions for living: Sustainable Living Wellesley Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.
Thank you so much to everyone who attended!
Jon Whelan, the film’s narrator and director, responded personally to our request for a non-profit screening license to show the film. I was able to send him the photo below from the event thanking him for the license and let him know how many attendees we had. Given how personal the film was for him after losing his wife to cancer, it was meaningful to me to share with him how many of you showed up to hear his message.
Special Thanks to Raina McManus of the NRC for presenting, Dr. Michael McManus (Ph.D. in synthetic organic chemistry) for fielding the Q&A, and Sustainable Wellesley volunteers Ellie Perkins and Janie Penn.
by Kelly Caiazzo April 11, 2019 Before the Flood carbon tax Electric Vehicle enivronment film food fun healthy lawn mobility No Waste plant based food Stink! vote water
We’re grateful to everyone who joined us for Sustainable Wellesley and the NRC’s screening of Before the Flood.
I’m all about what’s possible. We saw that it was possible to fill a room with people who wanted to watch a documentary about the environment while serving a plant-based meal with no single-use plastics and entirely compostable or reusable serving ware.
Facing the reality of climate change and thinking about the way it impacts human and animal life on the planet is a heavy topic, but there are ways we can shift our behavior so that we contribute less to the problem. And when others see us making changes and prioritizing the environment when we vote, eat, consume, drive or entertain, public awareness increases and our efforts can compound.
Here are some resources:
Join the “Power to Choose” Program in Wellesley to get your electricity from renewable sources: https://wellesleyma.
Eat some meatless meals. See our guide with links to recipe blogs, a list of great vegetarian meals at local restaurants and other resources for adding some plant-based meals into your week: http://www.
Get a Home Energy Assessment: Mass Save has free home energy assessments that can lower your home heating costs and make your home more environmentally friendly by increasing its efficiency. https://www.
Consider an electric / hybrid / carpool / alternate transit option:
Sustainable Wellesley Mobility rEVolution slides.
Great list of available Plug-in Electric Vehicles PlugInCars.com
Anyone interested in further discussion or a test ride in a Tesla Model 3 should contact Scott Bender at Scott@MyBlueDot.net
Anyone interested in further discussion or a test ride in a Tesla Model S or Tesla Model X can contact Kelly Caiazzo at email@example.com
“Drive Green” initiative by Green Energy Consumer’s Alliance has a great feature that allows you to easily compare various EVs, and has pre-arranged discounts on EVs with car dealers.
View the resources from the film: Includes information on supporting carbon taxes, maps of coastal flooding projections, and links to specific environmental initiatives. https://www.
Visit the Wellesley Natural Resources Commission page: Find information about the Gas Leaks initiatives , the Healthy Yard campaign, and other ways the NRC encourages Sustainability in Wellesley and protects our green spaces and natural resources.
Take a quiz on your “footprint” for personalized reduction strategies: Several sites offer this.
The Global Footprint Network: https://www.
Watercalculator.org (water footprint oriented): https://www.
Vote with the environment in mind.
Share what you’re doing: We need a shift in public opinion and awareness on climate change. Sharing what you’re doing and why, whether it’s telling someone about your home energy assessment or suggesting you carpool to an event together.
Have other ideas we missed? Want to continue the discussion? Have personal experience with solar panels or carbon offsets you want to share? You can:
Come to the next Sustainable Wellesley meeting on April 28th from 12:00 – 1:30 at 161 Oakland St. in Wellesley – the studio above the garage
Join a local Facebook group that discusses sustainable living strategies: https://www.
E-mail us at info@sustainablewellesley
Thanks so much for joining us last night, and we hope to see you again in the future! Our next film is Stink! on May 21st and we’re serving burritos. RSVP here
Thank you for being part of the solution!
by Kelly Caiazzo March 18, 2019 Before the Flood chemicals Climate change DInner documentary movie Stink!