Guide to greener living - Page 2

Some local resources to help you do your ecological part

Thimmakka's Resources for Environmental Education, a registered nonprofit, helps restaurants and bars get green certification — and also helps consumers find them through its comprehensive Web site.


World Changing's Web site presents itself as a forum for figuring out how technology can be used to preserve and improve our world rather than destroy it. Read about and comment on digital houses; the 200 shared bikes of Barcelona, Spain; and state-of-the-art hydroturbines.


Pablo Picasso once declared himself "king of the ragpickers." Some of his most amazing art was made from found objects — other people's trash. Since 1976, SCRAP (the Scroungers' Center for Reusable Art Parts) has been helping ragpickers get art materials. The center operates a store and offers workshops on basket weaving, lamp rewiring, and other useful recyclables skills.

834 Toland, SF. (415) 647-1746,


Don't just throw your old mattress on the street, leaving it to collect rainwater, dirt, fleas, and other unsavory grime. Bedbusters guarantees that your mattress will avoid the landfill, its steel springs and other materials will be recycled, and your conscience will be clear, for a reasonable fee.

(415) 516-5865,


Think you have to go to Yosemite or Point Reyes to commune with nature? Think again. This organization is all about teaching San Franciscans how to recognize and care for the indigenous plants and animals living in our urban landscape — or as some call it, the Franciscan bioregion (from San Bruno Mountain to the Golden Gate Bridge). Check out the Web site to learn more, join a stewardship effort, and find green events.

(415) 564-4107,


Realize whirled peas (and carrots and broccoli) with help from Garden for the Environment, a nationally acclaimed program that teaches organic gardening, urban composting, and sustainable food systems at community workshops, the Gardening and Composting Educator Training program, outreach programs for local schools, and a one-acre urban demonstration garden. Plus, most classes and workshops are free.

780 Frederick, SF. (415) 731-5627,


Everything you ever wanted to know about living car-free in the city. Part resource, part activist organization, Livable City hosts workshops on walking, biking, and using public transit, as well as advocates for parking reform, better street planning, and the creation of a landscaped greenway to connect parts of the city.

995 Market, SF. (415) 344-0489,


An extensive and well-designed green resource guide for the city, this government Web site has information on everything from where to recycle toner cartridges and mercury thermometers to how to dispose of asbestos and biohazardous waste. (Choose the item in the easy "ecofindeRRR" box or search through resources one by one.) This is also the place to join Green Connect volunteer events, learn about green-leaning celebrations and meetings, and find links to news stories about the environment.


PlantSF is a grassroots program that provides information on permeable landscaping and urban farming and works with the city on land-use conversions.