April 17, 2013 |
SACRAMENTO - A key state Senate committee has blessed a compromise among bedding manufacturers, environmentalists and local governments about how best to keep about 2 million used mattresses a year from being dumped on California streets or into landfills. Still to be determined is exactly what kind of consumer fee or tax would be levied on mattress and box spring purchases, which manufacturers have estimated might be around $25. The money would create a first-in-the-nation "recovery and recycling" program that would be run by the mattress industry and overseen by California regulators.
November 18, 2012 |
Upcycled fashion is no longer just for hard-core environmentalists. The idea of wearing items made from cast-off skateboards, inner tubes, plastic trash bags, car seat belts - even wartime bombs and bullets - is no longer considered bizarre but beautiful, as consumers pick up today's conservationist zeitgeist. "Upcycling" means taking something disposable and creating something of higher value with it - making a purse from a tire, for instance. (Recycling, on the other hand, decomposes items into materials that can then be used to create something else, such as turning wood chips into paper.)
September 13, 2012
Woe to the thirsty of Concord, Mass. Under a bylaw born of convoluted reasoning, a person who heads into a store in that town for some hydration will be able to buy a plastic bottle of soda, but not a similar bottle of what dietitians say should be the drink of choice: water. That's because Concord has become the first city in the United States to ban the sale of serving-size bottled water. It's enough to make New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg, whose proposed ban on the sale of large servings of soda is up for a key vote this week, weep.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
August 21, 2012 |
West Hollywood has become the latest in a string of California cities - including Santa Monica, Long Beach and Pasadena - to ban single-use plastic bags at store checkout lines. The City Council adopted an ordinance Monday night prohibiting hundreds of pharmacies and grocery and retail stores - including clothing stores and newsstands - in the 1.9-square-mile city from distributing the bags. The ordinance was approved as part of the council's consent calendar, along with routine items.
August 17, 2012 |
BEIRUT - At least 60 charred bodies were found Thursday in a suburb of the Syrian capital of Damascus in what activists described as another massacre committed by government forces. The bodies, all with their hands tied behind their backs, were found in a landfill in Qatna. Online video showed twisted corpses, some of them still burning. Hours after the discovery, opposition activists were still trying to find out who the victims were and what happened. Those slain in Qatna were among an estimated 200 people killed across Syria on Thursday as the daily death toll in the ongoing conflict between opposition fighters and President Bashar Assad's forces continues to rise.
May 11, 2012
Los Angeles County voters face two tax measures on the June 5 ballot, and they are unusual for several reasons: They ratify taxes that are already in place and have been for more than two decades; the taxes apply only in unincorporated areas of the county; and all residents benefit from the taxes although few ever will have occasion to actually pay them. Measure H keeps the hotel tax in place at its current level. Measure L keeps a tax on landfill operators in place. H for hotels, L for landfills.