Earth Day 2015 will be celebrated world-wide on April 22nd. The Environmental Media Association (EMA) held a kickoff for Earth Day at The Grove in West Hollywood on Sunday, April 12th. The EMA believes that through television, film and music, the entertainment community has the power to influence the environmental awareness of millions of people. This initial concept set the stage in 1989 when the non-profit was first launched and it remains the core EMA doctrine today.
Amy Smart, a Senior Board Member for the past fifteen years with EMA, describes the event as “just a sprinkle of consciousness.” I look around; there are about fifteen separate booths in a small section of space between the main thorough fare at The Grove and Gilmore Lane. The booths are swarmed with attendees enjoying vegetarian cuisine, drinking state of the art organic energy drinks, and learning about the benefits of using organic top soil and mulch. “The EMA is a very family-oriented non-profit,” Ms. Smart tells me.
The EMA and The Nature Conservancy have teamed up to further enrich children’s lives through nature with the Conservancy’s signature program, Nature Works Everywhere. Nature Works Everywhere’s Gardens in partnership with EMA allows children across the country to benefit from shared urban school garden experiences from Los Angeles to Atlanta. Amy continues, “We directly support over 16 school gardens through funding and celebrity mentoring via EMA’s Young Hollywood Board and Parent Board.” Amy and I bid one another adieu.
Next, I talk with Kathryn Kellogg Johnson, who, along with her brother Hap Kellogg, co-own Kellogg Garden Products, a family business. Kathryn talks about her business: “My father started the business back in 1925, selling only organic products for small scale gardening.” She introduces me to Bob Lawson, Director of Marketing at Kellogg: “I have been with Kellogg for fifteen years. I worked in the hardware business beforehand, and that was tough. Now I can wake up each morning knowing that I am doing what I really love to do.” Bob then tells me about GroMulch Organic Plus: “When using Gromulch in your garden you are adding 5% nutrient rich organic material to the soil that increases water retention by 20%. If you use a 3 inch layer of organic mulch, you will be reducing water usage by 30%. Now that we are experiencing the worst drought in the history of California, you can understand while Gromulch is an essential product for home gardeners.”
I am introduced to and joined by Steve Hazzard, Production Manager with Organic Control Inc. (Orcon). Orcon uses beneficial insects: Delphastus for white flies, Cryptolameus for mealy bugs and Predatory Mites for mites. Steve shows the Green Lacewings that are encased in a thirteen inch glass vile. The wings on the insect are translucent with a neon green stripe running down the middle of each of its wings. They are beautiful insects. “We ship the Green Lacewings as eggs that will soon hatch into larvae. The larvae are known as Aphid Lions because of their insatiable appetites. These insects can devour as many as 1.000 aphids per day,” Steve says. To see other essential products made by Orcon, go to their website at www.organiccontrol.com
Gillian Sheldon is Senior Vice President with Participant Media. She speaks with me about TakePart. “We are a double bottom line company, which means that while we are focused on revenue, we are also focused on social action and change, hence the double bottom line. TakePart is a division of Participant Media, the company behind the important documentary An Inconvenient Truth. We were founded by philanthropist and social entrepreneur Jeff Skoll in 2004. Participant Media was created with the belief that a story well told can change the world.” To learn more about TakePart, go to their website at www.takepart.com.
It is getting late, most of the tents for the booths are folding up. I speak with Brooke Goodwin-Fullerton, who is the Director of Public Relations with Garnier, a brand owned by L’Oreal USA. Brooke explains that many people recycle in the kitchen, but recycling in the bathroom isn’t as common and Garnier wants to bring awareness to all of the beauty waste that ends up in landfills as a result. Brooke then introduces me to Darshan Alatar, who is a professional Design Junkie with his company TerraCycle based out of New Jersey. Garnier and TerraCycle partnered together several years ago and began the Personal Care & Beauty Brigade whereby people are encouraged to send in empty bottles and packaging from their beauty products, which TerraCycle then recycles or upcycles into something else. For more information about Garnier and Terracycle, go to www.garnierusa.com/garnier-green and www.terracycle.com.
The Toyotoa Mira is on display. The Mira is a fuel cell vehicle that provides next generation mobility with an advanced technology fuel cell power train, and has a range of 300 miles. The refuel time is 5 minutes and the automobile is a zero carbon emissions vehicle.
Also, I strongly recommend that you take time to look at the website www.ecos.com where you will find Earth Friendly Products. They offer over 150 household and commercial cleaners that have been created with plant-derived cleaning agents making their products fresh, sustainable & effective.
Finally, look at http://www.ziavalentina.com where you will discover the history of Zia Valentina, a family-owned business with ancient recipes that will take you back to the foothills of Sicily and into Aunt Valentina’s kitchen where all of the grains, flowers, fruits and vegetables used in the products are organically grown in her backyard.