Special Issues » The Green Life

The Green Life

A guide to evironmentally friendly living


As it turns out, Kermit was wrong. Being green gets easier by the day. From the neighborhood grocery store up to the big, bad mega-lo-mart, there’s no escaping the mandate to “go green” in America today. Although it’s occasionally over-the-top and oftentimes questionably genuine, it’s still a good thing. If we’re going to save the world, respecting the environment is going to have to become the norm. At the City Paper, we’re far from perfect, but we’re learning more every day and taking steps to green ourselves — in the office and at home. Recycling should make us feel good, and throwing stuff away should feel a bit guilty. If you agree, let your favorite businesses and restaurants know. Because green is contagious, and we want you (and ourselves) to catch it.

The Green Office
Americans now spend an estimated 90 percent of the day indoors. Now considering that a third of our daily lives is likely spent in an office, it's important that those hours are healthy ones — that is once you get past whatever stress-related effects come from dealing with clueless bosses, ever-present deadlines, and that nose-picking chatterbox who sits next to you in the office writing HTML code. Make no mistake: Healthy workers are more productive workers.
By Stratton Lawrence | April 9, 2008

Tee Time
Throwing away an old T-shirt is like throwing away a part of yourself (albeit a pretty lame part of yourself that you probably want to destroy anyway). Regardless, it's tough.
By Meaghan Strickland | April 9, 2008

More than fish wrap
After you are finished reading/memorizing/worshiping your weekly City Paper, don't just recycle it — reuse it! Old City Papers are very effective insulators; they can be rolled and stuffed under doors and windows to keep the bad weather out and the good weather in.
By Meaghan Strickland | April 9, 2008

A second life for cds
News flash! There are these new contraptions called iPods that store thousands of songs within a tiny little space, and they are making CDs way less popular.
By Meaghan Strickland | April 9, 2008

Shades of gray
When it comes to green-friendly businesses in the Lowcountry, Half-Moon Outfitters just might be at the head of the pack. In December 2006, Half-Moon opened a new building in North Charleston. The facility, which serves as both the company headquarters and a warehouse, became the very first building in South Carolina and only the 25th project in the nation to receive the U.S. Green Building Council's LEED (Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design) Platinum award.
By Julie Hallman | April 9, 2008

Gettin' pretty green
Being pretty, or even presentable, can take a lot of work. Most women's daily arsenal includes some combination of shampoo, conditioner, hair product, face wash, shower gel, shaving cream, moisturizer, deodorant, and various kinds of makeup. But while a health- and beauty-conscious gal will religiously inspect the labels of whatever she puts into her body (how many calories is that again?), she may not extend the same attention to what she puts on it.
By Erica Jackson | April 9, 2008

Maid to be green
Dorsey Fairbairn and her sister-in-law Heather Fairbairn were shocked when they discovered how many toxic chemicals are in today's cleaning products. So shocked, in fact, that they started MaidPure, Charleston's only all-organic cleaning service. According to Dorsey, MaidPure began not as a corporation, but "as a way to change the status quo. And this passion for progress has not been at all reduced in the 12 months since the Fairbairns began organically cleaning Charleston homes.
By Meaghan Strickland | April 9, 2008

Spinning Wheels
On a dark morning in November 2006, my wife Ros was cycling from our home in West Ashley to work at MUSC. As she passed West Harrison Road, her front tire caught on something, and she was sent flying to the ground. In a daze, she picked up her bike and kept cycling, but when she got to work, she looked so shitty that she was sent to the ER. Paralysis set in; she was unable to speak or move.
By Nick Smith | April 9, 2008

Blow Me Down
Scheduled for completion this month, Charleston's latest mixed-use development, One Cool Blow, is setting new standards for green residential design. Less than a mile from the downtown shopping district, Cool Blow was designed with the lifestyle of its younger, more progressive residents in mind.
By Josh Eboch | April 9, 2008

Money Doesn't Grow On Trees
While it seems like every business these days is encouraging its customers to go green, South Carolina Federal Credit Union has come up with a novel method of persuasion. The credit union will reward customers with points, which can be redeemed for travel specials, shopping sprees, and merchant gift cards for using paperless banking methods like eChecking.
By Kinsey Labberton | April 9, 2008

The Waste Of Getting Wasted
In a giant warehouse facility on Romney Street, eight men and women stand along a conveyor belt and sort out the used receptacles that pass in front of them. One woman's job is to pull out plastics; the next removes glass. A giant magnet over the belt plucks away the cans. The walls are lined with cubes of smashed aluminum, milk jugs, and paperboard 20 feet high, ready to be sold and turned back into new products.
By Stratton Lawrence | April 9, 2008

Balancing Act
When Dave Muirhead started a courier service in Charleston in January, he wanted his company to be a local pioneer for environmentally friendly business practices. He decided to take two courses of action: he bought a hybrid car and began purchasing carbon offsets.
By Eric Blair | April 9, 2008

Up On The Rooftop
Covered by soil and vegetation and serving a number of environmentally friendly functions, a green roof merges architecture and the natural world.
By Julie Hallman | April 9, 2008

Up On The Rooftop
Covered by soil and vegetation and serving a number of environmentally friendly functions, a green roof merges architecture and the natural world.
By Julie Hallman | April 9, 2008

Fido Goes Green
Dogs today have pretty extravagant lives. They spend time in hotels, frequent gourmet bakeries, and even wear doggie couture. Just like us, they need to hop on the "reduce, reuse, recycle" bandwagon.
By Meaghan Strickland | April 9, 2008

Pop Quiz
Questions 1.
By Nick Smith | April 9, 2008

The Right Mix
Vince Graham and the I'On group have established themselves as the "good guy" developers in Charleston. With their latest project, Mixson, they're ambitiously hoping that all of the homes in this Park Circle subdivision will be certified by the Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design's LEED for Homes program as models of energy efficiency and environmental responsibility.
By Stratton Lawrence | April 9, 2008

Practice What They Preach
True to their vision of environmentally friendly design and "holistic planning," the new headquarters of WPC, Inc., in Noisette's Navy Yard redevelopment in North Charleston is a green facility. The geotechnical engineering firm specializes in environmental and construction services.
By Josh Eboch | April 9, 2008

God's house
The Circular Congregational Church, recently featured in an article in AIArchitect titled "Greening God's House," is an example of the wide-ranging appeal of sustainable design technology. Michael Crosbie, the article's author, believes that the concept of green structures appeals to religious congregations because "stewardship is a key part of their mission." Circular Congregational utilizes proven technologies like a green roof, geothermal heating and cooling systems, a rainwater collection cistern for landscaping use, and recycled building materials.
By Josh Eboch | April 9, 2008

Blackbaud gets clean and green
Across the Lowcountry, several large-sized recreational facilities are updating their practices and philosophies, electing plants that require less water, maintaining efficient irrigation, adjusting watering schedules, and switching to organic products, among other steps.
By T. Ballard Lesemann | April 16, 2008

Front Lawn Farming
Fritz Haeg wants you to eat your yard. Not your grass, but the fresh, delicious produce you could be growing in that wasted space. Established in Salina, Kan., his “edible estate” movement is gaining national momentum as more Americans look for ways to reduce their negative impact on the environment and make up for the rising cost of food by consuming locally grown fruits and vegetables. The basic premise calls for homeowners to remove all of their grass, then plant fruit and vegetable crops on the land instead. Haeg’s book, Edible Estates: Attack on the Front Lawn, documents four yards in four different cities from Lakewood, Calif., to London, which his group has converted since 2005 from “banal lifeless space” into a “chaotic abundance of biodiversity.
By Josh Eboch | April 16, 2008

Solar panels still out of reach for most
Although the ridiculously hot weather is one of the most notable things about Charleston — it seems like every summer day is sunny and humid — unfortunately, environmental consciousness is not. And that may be one reason why, when driving around town, you do not see many homes or businesses with solar panels on their roofs.
By Julie Hallman | April 16, 2008

Comments (2)

Showing 1-2 of 2

Add a comment

Add a comment