SolarTimes E-Mail Newsletter: Earth Day Around the Globe ( : LUSENET : Sustainable Business & Living iForum : One Thread

Just love the products and stores and their Solar Demonstration Center in Hopland, California. They recently started offering an e-mail newsletter.

Im always interested in the ways companies can politely market their eco-services while providing value added news or services as well. Real Goods does a good job.



Subject: Real Goods Solar Times Newsletter (Issue #3)
Date: Thu, 4 May 2000 06:20:16 -0700


Thursday, May 4th, 2000

7 Media Blackout for Earth Day?
7 EarthDay 2000 WorldWide Highlights
7 Environmental News
7 Quote of the week
7 Eco-Factoid
7 Simple Things to Do


EarthDay 2000 Media Blackout?

Earthday 2000 by all measures was a tremendous success. However, from the media's "blackout" of the event, the average citizen probably thought it never happened. Northern California newspapers were devoid of any Earthday coverage at all. I've heard numerous claims that the government and/or the media scheduled the Elian Gonzales seizure to suppress information on the environment and Earthday. Personally, that notion seems a bit paranoid to me, but stranger things have happened with the strangle hold the corporate controlled media has on information dissemination. In Washington DC, on the mall, where anywhere from 50,000 to 450,000 (I've heard wild estimates!) showed up for the largest Earthday rally in the country - some to hear Al Gore and Leo DiCaprio and some to see Carol King, James Taylor, David Crosby, and Clint Black. Everyone saw the media high tail out to Andrews Airforce Base as soon as the Elian story broke.

Locally, Real Goods participated in several Earthday events; all of which had great turnouts, including the Concord Pavilion event that took place a week later on April 30th. Our biggest educational contribution to Earthday will occur on May 4th at the Real Goods Solar Living Center in Hopland, California, when we'll be visited by 300+ 4th and 5th graders whom we plan to teach about the finer points of renewable energy, global warming, and the tools for a sustainable future.

For all of our RG Solar Times readers who couldn't get stories about Earthday locally, we've compiled a synopsis of news from Earthday 2000 events around the world

Please enjoy the stories, keep Earthday going everyday in your lives, reaffirm your commitment to clean energy, and come visit the Solar Living Center soon and often!

For the Earth,
John Schaeffer
Founder and CEO


Millions of people in 183 countries around the world celebrated Earth Day 2000 with rallies, fairs, and other events, many of them on the Clean Energy Now! theme. Earth Day 2000 worldwide highlights include the first-ever event in China organized by NGOs, a march calling for clean energy and environmental justice in South Africa, and a huge clean energy fair in Mexico City.

Here are a few event highlights by region:


Over 1,300 events occurred nationwide in all 50 states and consisted of 1,056 affiliated organizations and 609 campus affiliates.

US Events with about 10,000 or more included:

Washington DC; 429,000 people showed up on a cloudy, drizzly Earth Day 2000 on The Washington, D.C. Mall. Six tents with 40 booths each were set up between the U.S. Capitol and the Washington Monument. A giant stage with large screens was assembled at the base of the Capitol where speakers and performers played from Noon through 6 PM. The stage was powered by a hybrid natural gas, soy diesel, and photovoltaics. The solar tent was powered by solar as was the children's tent. Vice President Gore, EPA Administrator Carol Browner and Energy Secretary Bill Richardson made pro-clean energy speeches as did environmental leaders.

Bay Area (40,000) split between four principal areas including Sacramento, Berkeley, Marin, and San Francisco. Sacramento's natural gas "earth bus" (inaugurated for Earth Week) is still running after the event. San Jose and Contra Costa (the single largest event) happened the weekend of 4/29 and 4/30.

Cleveland (10,500); Health and Human Services Secretary Donna Shalala spoke at this event.

Los Angeles (20,000) at Expo Park

Chicago - 30,000 went to the event and thousands more participated in off-site clean up projects through the parks department); a million Earth Day "passports" went out in the Tribune; Saved by a "Sun Catcher" solar van that was powered for the concert the night before which ended up powering the main stage.

The Episcopal Church in California was able to get 42 out of 70 churches to switch to green power by Earth Day 2000. Next they'll power the first all green energy conference in the country at their national convention in Denver this July -- and challenge the Democratic and Republican conventions to do the same! Faith events and stewardship sermons kicked off at least 50 Earth Day events nationwide.

The State of Washington passed 65 proclamations and resolutions in support of Earth Day 2000 and the Clean Energy Agenda, thanks to a "challenge" issued to communities by Gov. Gary Locke.

The city of Santa Cruz has just approved their RFP to switch to green power and are currently accepting bids to "go green" in much the same way Santa Monica has. Their press release makes repeated reference to this as part of their commitment to Earth Day 2000.

Cape Canaveral is promoting its use of electric vehicles and expanding its fleet in conjunction with Earth Day 2000.

Sacramento is opening a brand new recycling center and putting the finishing touches on the world's largest photovoltaic parking facility.

Huntsville, Alabama is using Earth Day to kick-off and promote its participation as a test market for "green power" through the Tennessee Valley Authority. They will be using a mix of solar and wind.

Finally, the city of Berkeley is installing new LED's into all their stoplights to increase efficiency and reduce greenhouse gas emissions as their Earth Day commitment -- and Oakland has started a community energy team to educate businesses about how to become more energy efficient and retrofit their businesses for Earth Day.


Clean energy events were held in many countries across Africa, including South Africa, Uganda, Namibia, Guinea, Cote d'Ivoire, Niger, Burkina Faso, Egypt, Ethiopia, Mauritius, Tunisia, Kenya, Ghana, and Nigeria. In South Durban, South Africa, groundWork brought together students, church members, and other residents in a march protesting pollution from oil refineries and calling for environmental justice in the region. In Cape Town, Earthlife Africa staged a mock nuclear evacuation from the Koeberg Nuclear Power Station. On a bus loaded with reporters, local government leaders and activists, Earthlife organizers discussed how a nuclear accident would affect Cape Town and discussed sustainable energy options.

In Gabon, Brainforest broadcast messages from villages deep in the Mingouli forest via local talking drums (Nkouls) to protest massive industrial deforestation. When they reached Libreville, the drum messages were shared with the world via the Internet.

In Ghana, an open-air Earth Day Clean Energy Now! fair in Accra that showcased clean energy technology drew thousands of people.

And in Uganda, the National Environmental Management Authority involved more than 2.5 million people in Earth Day 2000 events, including a massive city-wide clean-up in Kampala. On 13 April, the Minister of Water, Lands and Environment gave an Earth Day radio address to the nation.


Millions of people participated in events held across Asia's capitols. In Hong Kong, more than 27,000 people planted trees and learned about the environment at two Earth Day carnivals. In Quezon City, Philippines, 30,000 people filled Quezon Memorial Circle for an Earth Day Fair. Hundreds of other events were held in the Philippines, ranging from riverboat parades to costumed bicycle tours. At least 40,000 people participated in a bike rally and carless day event in Seoul, South Korea.

In Beijing and across China, hundreds of thousands of people pledged to change their habits in the Earth Day 2000 Green Lifestyle Campaign.

In New Delhi, 400 children presented Indian Prime Minister A.B. Vajpayee with a "Children's Clean Air Manifesto" calling for stricter fuel standards and clean transportation options. A seminar on solar cookers and biogas was held in Kabul, Afghanistan. In Dhaka and four other cities in Bangladesh, Earth Day rallies involved 20,000 people. And in Kathmandu, Nepal, a rally on clean transportation drew attention to the city's new fleet of electric vehicles.

Real Goods spectacular Earth Day sales continues! Hundreds of products, including all of our books, are on sale now at Here's a handful of the great savings you can find:

Hemp Horizons. Regular price: $18.95. Sale price: $5.95. One of the hot topics at many of the Earth Day events we attended was industrial hemp. Hemp Horizons by John Roulac is an excellent source of information about industrial hemp.

Frilled Lizard. Regular price $34.95. Sale price: $19.95. You know how hard it is to find toys that are environmentally & socially responsible. You know how hard it is to find eco-toys that young children will love. The Frilled Lizard meets all of our standards!

Petroglyph Sweater. Regular price: $139.00. Sale price: $69.95. Sage green wool sweater with colorful embroidered accents. Hand knit in a women's cooperative in India, unisex sizes.



Community events and coordinated campaigns were both part of Earth Day 2000 in Europe. Across Russia and the NIS, more than 1 million people participated in clean-ups and educational events in the Earth Day March for Parks program. In Moscow, recent Goldman Prize winner Vera Mischenko's Ecojuris Institute took journalists, lawyers, and government officials on a tour to pollution hotspots in and around Moscow. At each site, local residents expressed their concerns about the environment.

In Helsinki, Finland, 5000 people rallied to oppose the development of what would be the country's fifth nuclear reactor. Earth Day anti-nuclear rallies were also held in Germany, Ukraine, Belarus, and France, where 1500 protesters in Bordeaux were gassed by police. In Voronezh, Russia, 100 people, some dressed as mutant monsters, gathered at the city square to protest the importation of nuclear waste into the country.

The Millennium Dome in Greenwich was the site of the UK's first big Earth Day celebration. The Dome's Eco-festival attracted 40,000 people and featured colorful exhibits on renewable energy, as well as giant inflatable animals and a band playing on instruments made with recycled materials.

On April 8-9, more than 500 Italian cities participated in an Earth Day "Cities Without Cars" event. In Rome, the car-free streets were the site of an open-air festival.

In Romania, several thousand participants gathered for Earth Day festivities in Bucharest's oldest park. Amid the music and theatre, signatures were gathered for an appeal to Romania's government to consider environmental issues in its decision-making processes. The appeal was delivered to officials on 24 April.

And in Bulgaria, thousands gathered in South Park in Sofia for an event that featured popular musical groups and a speech by the Minister of Environment, Mrs.Evdokiya Maneva. At 5pm, when EarthFair 2000 was starting in DC, all Earth Day participants in South Park in Sofia linked hands in a circle to symbolize their connection to the global environmental movement.


Earth Day events were held across Latin America. Mexico City's flagship event was held on 15-16 April in Parque Chapultepec. Teach-ins on clean energy and sustainability were held throughout the park both days. Sunday the 16th was a day of music that brought huge crowds to the Park. A radio station in Mexico City broadcast live from the Park during the event.

In Colombia, the U'wa tribe, who have been fighting oil drilling on their land, held a traditional ceremony on Earth Day. The ceremony, which involved 5,000 people, called on the U'wa god, Sira, to help the U'wa preserve their land and culture.

In Lima, Peru, 5,000 schoolchildren planted 1,000 trees in 1 minute around the city on Earth Day morning. A petition to the government was drafted by the children, asking the government to pass what would be the country's first environmental law. Meanwhile, 300 activists in four of Peru's largest cities passed out "environmental tickets" to motorists, citing them for polluting the country's air.


Earth Day events were organized by governments and NGOs across the Middle East.

In Jordan, Queen Mother Noor presided over a festival with 500 children from nature clubs around the country. More than 15,000 people turned out in Tel Aviv, Israel for an environmental fair and concert involving stiltwalkers, pop musicians, and environmental activists. Friends of the Earth - Middle East set up tents on both sides of the Eilat border crossing between Israel and Jordan and educated thousands of people about water conservation.

Earth Day was celebrated throughout Turkey by both government agencies and grassroots groups. In the capitol of Ankara, the Minister of Energy held a seminar for children that focused on clean energy. In Istanbul, CEKUL organized a parade in Taksim Square.


In Sydney, the Save Manly Dam Catchment Committee organized Australia's first-ever golf tournament for an environmental cause on Earth Day 2000. The event helped raise funds for the public buy-back of the Manly Catchment area and the stunning bush land (listed as a National Heritage site) at the headwaters of Manly Dam. Peter Garrett, environmental activist and singer for Midnight Oil, caddied at the golf tournament and voiced his support for this effort to save one of the last remaining wilderness areas in the greater Sydney region.

In the island nation of Palau, the President issued an Earth Day proclamation and participated in an event encouraging the public to use public transportation and bicycles instead of driving.


ALL books on the Real Goods website are on sale until May 17th! Save 20% or more on every title. Save money on the best titles in sustainable living!

Other Interesting Environmental News

Wind & Biomass More Cost Effective

Increased demand for natural gas as a fuel to generate electricity in the U.S. will inflate prices so high that wind and biomass will become two popular energy sources, according to a report from EPRI. The use of coal as a fuel could drop from 50 percent now to 10 percent by 2020, while natural gas jumps from 15 to 60 percent. By 2025, the U.S. would need to invest $160 billion to meet the demand for natural gas, but higher prices will cause the fuel to be "abandoned significantly" in favor of a shift to wind energy, biomass and other sources that cost less and produce lower GHG emissions, including nuclear and clean coal.

Corn-based Plastic Invented

Collaboration between Dow Chemical and grain processor Cargill has produced a plastic derived from corn and wheat. Their product, called polylactide (PLA) and branded NatureWorks, may potentially be used to make carpet fibers, packaging, clothing and other products. The partners have created a company called Cargill Dow Polymers and are building a manufacturing facility in Blair, Nebraska, which is projected to produce 300 million pounds of the material annually. Making plastic from a natural source frees its production from the volatility of the crude oil market. Moreover, Cargill Dow claims that PLA, unlike petroleum-based plastics, is made entirely from renewable resources and is biodegradable.

Wireless PV's

A U.S. company is patenting a device that can transmit power from PV panels without the use of electrical wires, to eliminate the network of wires used by PV panels to transfer electricity to battery storage. The curtainwall system integrates PV panels into the various materials and the wireless aspect will enhance integration by reducing the cost of maintaining and trouble shooting potential PV problems or replacing damaged curtainwall panels because no wire is directly connected to the PV panel.

Interesting WebSite!

If you want to know what's really going on in the world, you'll want to see that world through the eyes of Michael Moore. America's muckraking hero extraordinaire, star of Roger & Me and the Bravo Network's The Awful Truth, has a serious knack for rooting out corporate injustice and governmental tomfoolery, and a well-deserved reputation for causing endlessly amusing mayhem wherever wrongs need righting. Keep up on Mike's subversions of the dominant paradigm, the second season of his TV show, and other progressive items of importance at You'll find weekly messages from Mike, articles of interest, the scoop on the upcoming national elections, and more. Whenever the turkeys get you down, there's nothing like a healthy take-no-prisoners dose of Mike to restore the spirit and keep you going.

Be Environmental - Shop on The Web

According to a recent study, each minute shopping on the net uses 20 times less energy than a minute of driving to the mall and shipping a 10 lbs. box overnight uses 40% less fuel than the average mall round trip. By 2007, e-commerce may reduce future construction by 1 billion-sq. ft. of warehouse space, 1.5 billion sq. ft of retail space, and 2 billion sq. ft of office space. Not building these things will in turn prevent the release of 40 million metric tons of greenhouse gases and save the energy output of 20 power plants. The Internet could also save 2.7 million tons of paper as newspapers, catalogs and direct mail pieces go digital. We prefer this more optimistic vision, but time will tell.

Credits: Thanks to Michael Martin of for his generous contribution of EarthDay coverage and to Jeffrey Hollender of Seventh Generation for his information.

'Tis the Season?

One of the cardinal rules of all bargain hunters is to buy something when it's out of season. Real Goods is proud to offer sweaters from Indigenous Designs, a company as committed to fair trade, environmental preservation, & quality traditional craftsmanship. Check out the great prices on these favorites:

Hemp/Wool Henley Sweater. Regular price: $99.00. Sale price: $69.95. Wool for warmth. Hemp for durability. Unisex sizing in three colors; sage, blue & barks.

Natural Wood Shirt/Jacket. Regular price: $99.00. Sale price: $79.95. This warm jacket is woven in Equador. The beautiful patterns are created using three colors of natural wool. Take a look, you'll love it.

V-Neck Strip Pullover. Regular price: $99.00. Sale price: $69.95. Wool sweater, hand knit in an Ecuadorian cooperative. Unisex sizes.

Quote of the Week:

"The junk mail Americans receive in one day could produce enough energy to heat 250,000 homes"


Americans receive almost 2 million tons of junk mail every year

Simple Things to Do:

Recycle the junk mail you get:

- If it's printed on newsprint, toss it in the newspaper
- If it's quality paper, make a separate pile for it - many recycling centers accept both white and colored paper now
- Envelopes are recyclable, too, as long as they don't have plastic windows in them.


-- Anonymous, May 09, 2000


See also thread...

RealGoods.coms Solar Demonstration Center, iProducts Catalog and The Institute for Solar Living 002ZJi

-- Anonymous, May 09, 2000

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