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Earth Day '98, April 22

Learning to Live With Less

April 21, 1998|CONNIE KOENENN

Earth Day tip: Get informed.

Since Earth Day 1990, which kicked off this decade's interest in the environment, the resources for learning about sustainable living (not taking more from the Earth than we are putting back) have multiplied. "Both the Rio Earth summit and the Kyoto [Japan] global warming conference have increased awareness of how our consumption patterns affect the whole globe," says Sean Sheehan, program associate for the Maryland-based Center for a New American Dream.

The year-old center, organized to help people live more fulfilling lives while using fewer material resources, is a hub for organizations and resources related to balanced living. Among their suggestions:

* At the center: "Yearning for Balance" action kit provides tips, references and case studies for family activities and community involvement, and includes a 40-page personal eco-audit. $10. Information: (888) 289-2317.

* In bookstores: "Simplify Your Life With Kids," Elaine St. James (Andrews McMeel Publishing, 1997).

"Marketing Madness: A Survival Guide for a Consumer Society," Michael Jacobson and Laurie Ann Mazur (Westview Press, 1995).

"The Green Commuter," Joel Makower (National Press Books, 1992).

"Beyond the Limits," Donella Meadows, Dennis Meadows and Jorgen Randers (Chelsea Green, 1992).

"Your Money or Your Life," Joe Dominguez and Vicki Robin, (Penguin Book, 1992).

* World Wide Web sites: The center's site is http://www.newdream.org.

Tips for a healthier home and office: http://www.coopamerica.org.

For a list of thousands of socially and environmentally responsible products and services: http://www.greenpages.org.

A site that teaches kids about energy conservation, solar power and efficient transportation is http://www.eren.doe.gov, and click on "Kids' Stuff."

To order a stop-junk-mail kit: http://www.stopjunk.com.

A comprehensive resource for citizens working to create vital sustainable communities: http://www.sustainable.org.

* The countdown to Earth Day in Life & Style:

Wednesday: What you can do. A personal action list not just for recycling, but to prevent waste in the first place.

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