Light Weight = Heavy Impact


Guest blog post and graphic by Allison Stewart of our Better Paper Project.  I was at a Sustainability in Packaging conference earlier this spring, and it hit home for me that we need better product and packaging development. If we develop products that have no further opportunity for re-use, then we are intentionally making unsustainable products and packages. If we […]

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Victory: “Original” Cheerios to Go GMO-Free


Great news for our work together for a sustainable food system! Just a few days into the new year, we have our first victory of 2014 to celebrate. After a year of pressure from you and other Green Americans, General Mills announced on its corporate Web site that its “original” Cheerios are now produced without genetically modified ingredients.  General Mills announced that the […]

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Sweatshop Conditions in the US: The Problem of Wage Theft

Photo credit: torbakhopper on Flickr

The Fair Labor Standards Act (FLSA) provides “standards for the basic minimum wage and overtime pay, affects most private and public employment. It requires employers to pay covered employees who are not otherwise exempt at least the federal minimum wage and overtime pay of one-and-one-half-times the regular rate of pay,” according to the United States Department of Labor. Laws such […]

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Your Rights as an American Worker

Despite the promise of certain legal rights to safe, healthy, and fair work conditions, sweatshops and slavery still exist here in the United States. As exposed in last month’s issue of The Green American, “Fair Labor at Home,” in fleeing from terrible working conditions in their native countries, many immigrants are flung from the frying pan into the fire. Seeing their precarious financial or legal situation, certain unscrupulous employers will sometimes lure desperate immigrants into their employment with promises of a better life, only to subject them to the very conditions many were trying to escape in the first place. While in very sad cases employers use economic coercion, threats of deportation, or physical force to exploit their workers, part of the battle is knowing your rights as a worker. After all, how can you know when your rights are being violated and thus be incited to action, if you weren’t aware you had rights in the first place? So whether you’re just touching down on American soil for the first time or have never left it, it’s important to get acquainted with your legal rights. That’s why we here at Green America have compiled a short list of some of your most fundamental rights as a worker.   A quick caveat: The information provided in this post does not constitute legal advice. It is merely a list of certain legal rights and certain resources that can describe your rights […]

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Production Tax Credit Survives Fiscal Cliff

One piece of good news from this week’s fiscal cliff deal:  wind-energy production tax credits — imperiled since last summer — have been extended through 2013 as part of the year-end budget deal.  Thank you to the thousands of Green Americans who sent a message to their representatives in Congress demanding that this necessary incentive for cleaner energy remain intact. From Slate: The deal, passed by the House on Tuesday, extends the research-and-development tax credit through 2013, helping to preserve the jobs of high-skill researchers working on tomorrow’s technologies and scientific advances. As Obama said in his remarks Tuesday night, “We can’t keep cutting things like basic research and new technology and still expect to succeed in a 21st century economy.”

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More Evidence for Strike #8 Against Nuclear Power

We at Green America support renewable energy and energy efficiency as the most effective tools to combat the climate crisis.  Our article “Ten Strikes Against Nuclear Power” explains why we don’t consider nuclear energy to be a useful or pragmatic part of that mix.  Last week, Reason magazine published “No to Nukes,” a new article supporting our eighth strike, the cost factor: The nuclear energy industry in the United States is powered by corporate welfare on plutonium. What is in theory a wonderful technology is in practice an economic white elephant. The data accumulated during the last 30 years suggest strongly that nuclear plants will never be able to cover their operating costs, let alone recoup the billions it costs to build them. Read the whole article here.

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9 GMO Ingredients to Watch Out For


Because of the prevalence of soy and corn in processed foods, about 30,000 genetically modified food products sit on US grocery store shelves. Here are the top 9 GM ingredients to watch for: 1. SOY GM since: 1996 How widespread: 94 percent of the US soybean crop was genetically modified in 2011, according to the USDA. What to watch for: […]

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6 Grocery Tips for Avoiding GMOs

Though dozens of countries around the world require genetically modified food to be labeled, the US is not one of them. In the absence of lables, here are our best tips for avoiding GMOs when you shop: 1. Look for the Non-GMO Project label: The Non-GMO Project label provides consumers with independent, third-party assurance that a product contains no GMOs. The Project tests high-risk ingredients in the products that bear its label, to ensure that they contain less than 0.9 percent GMOs (allowing for low levels of unintentional contamination). 2. Be wary of unverified non-GMO claims: A company may legally label its products as being GMO-free without having to perform testing or otherwise prove to a third-party that is the case.

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