Book Review: Green Greener Greenest

9 07 2008

Green Greener Greenest by Lori Bongiorno.

First of all, I LOVE lists…all kinds of lists. Anyone who works on green buildings is familiar with lists.

Having written my fair share of green checklists, I was a bit wary of this book, particularly because it was published in the unchanging form of an actual bound book… in green ink no less! However, I was duly impressed by the breadth and depth of information included in this book.

Ms. Bongiorno presents much of the information in a refreshing non-definitive way. It’s not argumentative or holier-than-thou either. I’d much rather have an informed discussion about the vagaries, pros and cons of the issue at hand than read a know-it-all paragraph that is merely someone’s opinion. She had me on page 158 when she states that “It’s a matter of trade-offs and what issues are most important to you.

Ms. Bongiorno, a Brooklynite, clearly spent a good deal of time on research. There are 12 chapters ranging from food and beverages to home building and maintenance, personal care products and items related to babies and children. Each chapter and subchapter lay out environmental problems and steps that can be taken to mitigate them. Part of the fun is seeing how green you are according to her levels. (Apparently I’m greenest in food, beverages and home-related activities, not so green when it comes to clothing and pest control – who knew?)

And I’m always up for learning when it comes to sustainability. Here are a list of sites I never heard of before (in no particular order) that are very interesting. I would highly recommend this book – there are at least 20 dog-eared pages in my copy.

Power Scorecard: Rates the environmental impact of different types of electrical generation in states where consumers can make choices.

National Fenestration Rating Council: Ratings for energy efficient doors, windows and skylights.

Swaporama: Community wide clothing swap.

Kaight: An ethical eco-friendly store in NYC.

Gomi: Eco clothing boutique in NYC.

Under the Canopy: Affordable sustainable sheets

Arm & Hammer: All things baking soda

H2ouse: Sustainable garden irrigation

Children’s Gardening info at the Brooklyn Botanical Garden

Composting 101

Find our local air quality levels at airnow.gov

Book Crossing: Interesting book trading group who leaves books for members in public places.

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