Monthly Archives: April 2012

Huffman Award goes to Carol Misseldine

On April 20, 2012, Green Sangha Advisory Council member Carol Misseldine received the North Bay Environmental Hero award from Assemblyman Jared Huffman.  Here is an excerpt of the announcement from Huffman’s office:

‘The award recognizes an exceptional individual for leadership and innovation in addressing environmental stewardship.  The Environmental Hero of the North Bay award celebrates peer recognition for environmental stewardship, where people in the field recognize a colleague for exceptional service on behalf of the environment,’ said Huffman. ‘Carol Misseldine has an impressive track record of getting things done by advancing several sustainability initiatives that have made an impact in local governments across the North Bay.’

Huffman presented Misseldine with the award at his 5th annual Environmental Breakfast, held this year at the David Yearsley River Heritage Center in Petaluma.

To read the nomination of Carol Misseldine by Stuart Moody, click here.

Carol Misseldine – Environmental Hero

Carol Misseldine has been an environmental luminary for years.  Trained in the comprehensive framework of the Natural Step, she has been a strong and clear voice for constructing our lives and our society with understanding and respect for both the abundance and the limits of nature.

Carol began her career of environmental leadership with the Michigan Environmental Council.  When she took the post of Executive Director there, the annual budget was about $70,000.  When she left four years later, the budget had grown to nearly $1 million, with a commensurate increase in the agency’s effectiveness.

As Sustainability Director in the office of Oakland mayor Jerry Brown, Carol initiated one of the state’s first municipal single-use bag ordinances as well as a foam food-ware ban.  Later, as Sustainability Coordinator for Mill Valley, she catalyzed the City’s adoption of a similar foam ban and the elimination of plastic water bottles from City offices, parks, and functions.

When the State budget crisis cut short the plan of the Ocean Protection Council to fund a Master Environmental Assessment (MEA) on single-use bags, Carol personally raised over $100,000 to fund the completion of this pivotal report.  The MEA has influenced dozens of California municipalities as they have contemplated and, in many cases, passed plastic bag bans.

Carol combines her passion for the health of the planet with careful study and the ability to see broad patterns side by side with the particulars.  Her combination of deep caring with deep mastery of ecological principles has made her a much loved and sought-after speaker in the Bay Area and beyond.  Leaders in the field, from elected officials to city planners to nonprofit advocates, listen to Carol and seek her opinion on issues of sustainable practice.

Ever searching for new ways to restore the environment, she leads the community in ever-new initiatives.  The first recipient of the Humane Society University’s Animal Policy and Advocacy Graduate Certification, Carol has embarked on her latest campaign – Less Carbon, More Compassion – promoting an end to Confined Animal Feeding Operations and inspiring citizens to adopt a plant-based diet.  These two steps together represent one of the most important ways we can save the climate, improve our health, and affirm our fellowship with other creatures.

We are fortunate to have Carol Misseldine as a leader in the community, reminding us to look deep in our hearts and to imagine a truly healthy and compassionate world.

Three Things You Can Do for Yourself & the Earth

Sat Apr 21, 9:30 am – noon.  GARDEN WORK PARTY!  Beautify the Green Schoolyard and plant summer crops at Davidson Middle School in San Rafael.  Fresh air, fellowship, and fun.  More info here.

Fri Apr 27-Sun Apr 29.  WEEKEND RETREAT.  Immerse yourself in the peace of the redwoods with yoga, meditation, Dances of Universal Peace, and reflection.  Includes a tour of award-winning Monterey Regional Waste Management facility and the Land of Medicine Buddha.  Cost $350 for two nights and all eight delicious vegetarian meals.  Details here.

Three Thursdays:  May 3, 17, 31, 7-9 pm.  RETHINKING PLASTICS TRAINING.  Learn practical tools for inspiring plastics reduction and a healthy economy, led by Stuart Moody, MA, campaign director.  Click here for more information.

And a fourth!
.  Fulfill your wish to support awakened action through your technical skills:  manage, upgrade, and periodically polish our website, using WordPress.  Tutorial support available.  If this is not for you, let us know if you can recommend someone for this 1-3 hrs/wk volunteer opportunity.  Contact Elizabeth:

SAVE THE DATE!  Monday, May 14, 7:30-9:00 pm
LESS CARBON, MORE COMPASSION is our latest campaign, and the title of Carol Misseldine’s fact-filled, heart-touching presentation on how we can reduce our carbon footprint while improving our compassion footprint.  In the San Rafael City Council chambers, 1400 Fifth Street.  More info.

Earth Day party!

 Celebrate Earth Day by getting your hands in the earth!
Saturday, April 21, 2012, 9:30 a.m. to noon
Davidson Middle School Garden, 280 Woodland Avenue, San Rafael

Spruce up the vegetable beds, plant summer crops, and tend the urban forest and wetlands.  Projects vary from light to vigorous, as you wish.  Projects include:  planting seeds, removing weeds, turning compost, upgrading fences around fruit trees, and other acts of care.

Remember to bring a hat and other sun protection, and to wear close-tied shoes and layers for changeable weather.  Bring your gardening gloves and a favorite tool (clippers, trowel, handpick) if you have.  A water fountain is nearby.  No single-use plastic water bottles, please!

CONTACT:  Stuart Moody, Green Schoolyard Coordinator (; phone 459-0176)

Address:  280 Woodland Avenue, San Rafael.  The Garden is in the back of the campus, right next to a wooden bridge over the Riparian Zone.

Weather:  A light drizzle would be no impediment, but sunny skies are forecast.
Gardening gloves if you can
* Dandelion digger and/or hand pick, if you have
* Water bottle if you like (no throw-away plastic!)

FOR MORE INFORMATION about the Garden project, click here to see our listing with the Center for Volunteer and Nonprofit Leadership, or call CVNL and ask for Ashley Kelly (415) 479-5710.

Rethinking Plastics training


Thursday evening workshops, May 3, 17, & 31

Are you tired of seeing plastic junk leaving stores and going straight to the garbage can or, worse still, to the gutter?  Have you been imagining how much cleaner and healthier our world would be if producers were required to take back products that have reached the end of our useful lives?

Green Sangha’s Rethinking Plastics campaign has been inspiring shoppers, business owners, heads of school, and civic policy makers for six years to reduce their plastic footprint.  Our initiatives have included the Fairfax plastic bag ban, waste reduction at the Marin County Fair, elimination of plastic produce bags from Bay Area markets, and the BYOBag campaign in Marin.  Join us in the next phase of our campaign as we take on Extended Producer Responsibility, Getting Off the Bottle, and ending take-out foam foodware.

Since 2006, Green Sangha has made nearly 300 presentations to over 8000 students, community leaders, and eco-activists on the costs of plastic addiction and the path to sustainability.

You can take part in this campaign, whether as a volunteer at tables, a speaker at social clubs and city council meetings, or a member of our strategy team.  To support your informed engagement, this spring we are offering Rethinking Plastics Training, beginning with a presentation by Heidi Sanborn, co-founder and Executive Director of the California Product Stewardship Council, on Thursday, April 19, 7-9 pm, at the Kreps Center, Redwood High School, 395 Doherty Drive, Larkspur.

In 1905, Heidi says, 7% of New York City’s waste consisted of manufactured items.  In 1960, these items grew to 62% of US trash.  By 2009, they reached 71%.  Consider just one small piece of that waste stream:  over 340,000 cell phones thrown away every day in the US.  This is a recipe for disaster.

The recipe for sustainability?  Education, awareness, and action.  To increase your awareness and develop your capabilities for decisive action, Rethinking Plastics Training will follow Heidi’s talk with three Thursday evening workshops, May 3, 17, & 31, also 7-9 pm, in San Rafael.

Cost of the training is $100 ($80 for Green Sangha members; $40 for prior Rethinking Plastics attendees).  Following these sessions, participants may make short presentations on plastics to an in-house group.  All successful presenters will be invited to speak on behalf of Green Sangha, with a small stipend for each talk given in the community.

To register or for more information, contact our Program Director Elizabeth Little, or (510) 532-6574.


Monterey County retreat, Apr 27-29

Imagine a world where worn-out resources are reused and recycled instead of dumped, where legacy methane is harvested from old landfills, and waste management agencies promote zero waste.

Imagine a world where activists recharge their inner batteries with yoga in the redwoods, contemplative walks in the afternoon, and singing under the stars.

Imagine a world where the inner practices of awakening are integrated with the outer work of gardening, community-building, and environmental activism.

This is the vision of Green Sangha, and it’s coming true already.  For a full glimpse and a rich taste of this new world, join us for our Monterey County retreat on April 27-29.

Highlights of the weekend include:

1)  A guided tour of the Monterey Regional Waste Management facility with environmental educator Jeff Lindenthal

2)  Yoga classes with certified yoga instructor and Green Sangha President Stuart Moody

3)  Incredible, amazing, and delicious organic food, much of it grown on site

4)  Dances of Universal Peace with Marcia Rayene

All in a peaceful, hospitable, and comfortable mountain retreat at Venture Valley.

For more information and to register, click here.