Cradle to Cradle: Zem Joaquin Shares Mentorship Moments with William McDonough
Living Green
Meredith Medland Sasseen

Episode 9 - Cradle to Cradle: Zem Joaquin Shares Mentorship Moments with William McDonough

Green Editor for House and Garden Magazine, Zem Joaquin believes Style and Sustainability can co-exist. Using ecology as a spiritual path, she demonstrates that all things that come from the earth should go back to the earth while consulting with companies really to embrace the green movement. Learn what lights the way for Zem when she shares tips and trips from replacements of dioxin filled products to the creation of healthy environments for children.



Cradle to Cradle: Zem Joaquin Shares Mentorship Moments with William McDonough

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Meredith Medland: Welcome to Living Green, I am your host Meredith Medland and I am here with Zem Joaquin. Zem Joaquin is the founder and editor-in-chief of, this is an online resource dedicated to sharing her passion and expertise in green building and home furnishing and also she is going to tell us through this whole interview today that style and sustainability can co-exist.

A few things that you want to know about Zem, she is a contributing eco editor to Host and Guardian magazine. She is also a Green design consultant consulting with various individual and corporate clients including Pottery Barn, Poltroons, Margaret O’Liere clothing and also is collaborating with a very well known Green architect that we’re going to learn more about in just a minute.

Like most fabulous, ecofabulous people, Zem is doing a great job and she is on the board of directors for Global Green and we’re also going to learn more about our creating healthy environments for children today.

Zem Joaquin: …and Global Green is working on as we purchased a piece of property in New Orleans that is going to be designed in a totally environmentally friendly way but also sustainable. It’s built on steel so that if we do have another situation somewhere to between of that, we’ll be able to survive it.

There are opportunities out there for everyone with this movement. There are design opportunities, new companies that can start there, old companies that can be refreshed. So that’s really where I found him to be the most inspirational and give me the most direction.

You do put in on your clothes and you know, things that develop big holes in them because of material that you’re pouring on it. You might want to think about that.

So there are some of these things are just kind of obvious but you don’t think about them because your parents, your grandparents used it and we wouldn’t use a computer that our grandparents used. As a matter of fact, our grandparents didn’t use one.

Meredith Medland: Welcome to the show Zem.

Zem Joaquin: Thank you so much for having me Meredith.

Meredith Medland: so as I invite the buyer and told our listeners all about you, what’s the piece of your buyer that is it a thing that you’re most passionate about?

Zem Joaquin: Well, for a long time it’s actually been the non-profit work. I am very interested in sustainability as it effects people who can’t afford the luxuries of Green building and what we think of as the movement and I actually am very interested in sustainability and the sexiness of sustainability and that you can purchase thing now and write a lifter, the 9/11 stuff, with the government being really concerned about bio-terrorism, truly exciting, at the same time I think that needs to be made available to people in every income bracket and so I love the fact that Global Green makes those things available through their Green Resource Center which is provided, information that is completely unbiased and also is free of charge. So people who cannot afford a green consultant which is quite pricey, they have access to that same information and the same resources and we also work on Greening low income housing. So that’s really exciting to me. Some of these buildings in San Francisco in particular, are just stunning. There are these beautiful buildings you would be proud to live in, I would be proud to live in but yet, they’re designed for people who are kind of living on the edge.

Meredith Medland: Now, we are doing this interview at your home and you’ve just had it photographed and you have a very exquisite home but the difference I think between your home and some other homes I have been in, even if this whole Green movement is not really new for you?

Zem Joaquin: No, it’s not. It’s just materials that are available to me are new, which is really exciting. I mean I have always been interested in the Green movement and it’s been the last few years that I have really spent my entire life focused on it and but it’s only been in the last couple of years where there are actually enough products to meet my needs but they really do exist and there are new ones coming on line every single day which is just thrilling for people in my line of work.

Meredith Medland: Let’s talk a little bit about your mentor. How did you guys meet?

Zem Joaquin: I saw him speak at Ted, which was completely for it, he is just so inspirational and talks about, he is the father of ‘Cradle to cradle’, the concept that all things that come from the earth should go back to the earth, either it’s a biological or technological nutrient and I was just flown away by that concept and then ended up reading the book ‘Cradle to cradle’ and realized that was my life’s calling that I wanted to inspire designers to rethink the way they think about design and when I say designers, I don’t mean just interior designers or industrial designers or clothing designers, I mean all of those and more anybody who is creating anything, needs to think about the direction they’re going and what is going to happen after the fact.

So after you design a pen that it’s not just going to be disposable in the sense that it’s going to end up in a landfill and also any of the ink that gets away is going to end up sowing the water rise, instead that you think about could that be planted? Could that become a nutrient or can it be sent to some other location where it’s turned into some other type of technical nutrient.

Meredith Medland: So when was your first meeting with William and what happened?

Zem Joaquin: Yes, sorry I got off that. I actually first met him at the following Ted but we had been emailing each other back and forth and for a good amount of time and then when we met, we just kind of instantly loved each other’s energy and I was, of course I have always been inspired by him but he just said, “I am going to take you on a [unintelligible] I don’t want to teach you what I know and I like the fact that I feel that you can inspire people to change the way they think”.

Meredith Medland: Now how did he first start to change the way that you thought?

Zem Joaquin: Well, I think it’s really the ‘Cradle to cradle’ concept and it’s just the idea that you are thinking through the design process, it’s not just about function. It’s about function aesthetics, you can’t sacrifice those but it’s also about the sustainability factor which I think that any designer should be required to take that into consideration and that things are not disposable, there is no way and Bill always talks about there is no way.

People used to throw things away or what it means, it means its going to a landfill and that will pile up in best case scenario for us as Americans is then sent to some island where it’s stored until it no longer can be stored and it seeps into waterways and it gets into our route systems.

Anyway, that really to me was exciting the fact and that there were, he talks about products that you didn’t have to sacrifice anything and yet they were responsible and that was when I got really excited and thought, “Okay, how do I get involved in this?”

Meredith Medland: And how long ago was that?

Zem Joaquin: That was about three and a half years ago.

Meredith Medland: Now, you meant to him on your blog and I just want to make sure that our listeners know exactly where to go to find him. So will you spell his last name for me?

Zem Joaquin: McDonough.

Meredith Medland: And so, you can go to the right hand rail of your blog, which is, and then there’s a links to blogs and you can link on his…or I don’t know it’s under…

Zem Joaquin: Yeah, actually he doesn’t have a blog, it’s actually his website and that basically will take you to his architecture and information, projects that he has done with, things like the Gap and Google and some very large companies where he has inspired them. He also is building or overseeing the construction of six cities in China and…

Meredith Medland: I am really thrilled to hear that. I think those are really patient people.

Zem Joaquin: …looking at transportation so that there are systems in place for young people to be transported by elders and really developing the community so they’re sustainable communities but he has designed the city so that there is zero impact on the environment which to me is just, that’s the most exciting thing I could possibly imagine and he is also doing this in New Orleans with, he is working with Brad Pitt on this incredible project, as is Global Green.

So Global Green is working actually on a separate project and now they’re going to end up being interconnected but the project that Global Green is working on as we purchased a piece of property in New Orleans that is going to be designed in a totally environmentally friendly way but also sustainable. It’s built on steel so that if we do have another situation somewhere to between of that, we’ll be able to survive it.

Meredith Medland: Most of my guests have a mentor or a someone who is leading them, guiding them, it’s almost like having a spiritual, if you think of ecology and spirituality, there’s a big overlay especially when I filter that through my travels to Bhutan and looking at other spiritual practice of things, can you talk about the transitions, the mental transitions you’ve experienced through working with him and give me kind of a ‘before’ and then ‘after’ and your beliefs, attitudes and values?

Zem Joaquin: That’s a big one. Yeah, so before meeting him, I don’t think I thought about everything I did consciously. I think there were times when I took action without thinking first. Even in my design practice in furnishings, when I was remodeling my last house, there were times where I didn’t look at. I always looked at the paint and things like that but maybe the materials that the couch was filled with or the materials that the couch is wrapped in, now I could never even contemplate just purchasing something because it was beautiful. It absolutely has to meet these criteria that Bill has helped me define and they’re very important to me, things must function, things must be beautiful and make you happy but they also must not have a negative impact on the environment.

Meredith Medland: Are those criteria that you just mentioned, when you say there’s really important criteria, were those the criteria?

Zem Joaquin: Well, there’s all the criteria that he necessarily laid out. He just has inspired me to look at that way and he always spends a lot of time talking about them and how important it is to think about everything that you do and I don’t just mean in design, I mean every action I take in my life, I have to think about them first and I have to say I am not perfect, you know I am reminded.

Meredith Medland: You know?

Zem Joaquin: I know, it’s shocking, and he will always apologize to me. It’s really funny, I mean I see people doing this with Bill too but they will come up to me and say, “Oh I drove here today in an SUV. You’re not going to want to have lunch with me? The shoes I am wearing I know they’re leather. Do you hate leather”, or they’ll apologize for what they’re eating and there’s no judgment, it’s about thinking about your choices consciously and Bill did in actually.

We didn’t sit down and went through what the choices are and create a criteria, it was just, he inspired my criteria and if you’re ever around Bill, he is such a wonderful, inspirational figure and approaches things in such a loving way and such a positive way, I think that’s really what, you know when you say spiritual path, he has inspired me to approach everything without feeling that draw bad, my god this is so huge and it’s not that weedy feeling any longer, I mean in the environmental movement often is overwhelming. There are so many things we need to address but that’s now how he approaches and he approaches it with love, enthusiasm and excitement.

All the opportunities, there are opportunities out there for everyone with this movement. There are design opportunities, new companies that can start there, old companies that can be refreshed. So that’s really where I found him to be the most inspirational and give me the most direction.

Meredith Medland: What’s the biggest opportunity you’re contemplating right now?

Zem Joaquin: Well, I actually am not contemplating but I have this opportunity in Italy that I just got back from a trip there and I am working on this huge project with Onagai, who is a yogini and she is doing this yoga retreat in Kiante that I am actually co-designing with her and I am the eco consultant on it and we’re making sure that is a completely eco-friendly, beautiful, inspirational place to go and so that’s why, and I love her. She is just such an incredibly beautiful and vibrant person who is really committed to yoga and spiritual exploration but also to the environment and how it effects about world in, almost everything.

Meredith Medland: One of the things I love about your path is that you’re interacting with lots of people, individuals as well as corporations. When we come back from the break we’re going to learn more about the relationship that you have with Pottery Barn and some of the consulting that you’ve done with them. So stay tuned listeners, we’re going to take a break here to thank our sponsors and will be back right after this.

[commercial break]

Meredith Medland: Welcome back to Living Green. I am your host Meredith Medland and we’re here with Zem Joaquin and we’re talking about the Pottery Barn in your consulting. Tell us what you’ve done with them and how you’ve changed their attitudes and beliefs around the green movement.

Zem Joaquin: Well, the great thing about Pottery Barn is they’re really ready to embrace the green movement and I think they felt a lot of pressure to stay ahead of the curve and they have someone at home who really does care about sustainability. So that’s exciting and she has kind of led this but it really was in many ways, it was more kind of bottom up and you had a lot of people or lot of their designers who were really ready to start designing things in much more ecologically sustainable way and were inspired to look at new materials and new techniques.

So I think they brought me and it just really helped to kick start that and inspire people and let them know that it’s not as daunting as it can seem and also I have worked with them on more the simply areas of their life to approach like things, like bringing their own mug store work and not using the disposable cups there and also things like getting a bit of chlorine bleach in their houses and the interesting thing is people would come back and say, “Zem, I was at your presentation and I no longer use chlorine bleach. Thank you for letting me know about dioxins. I was totally unaware of that and thanks for letting me know about chromium dyed leather”, and that’s one of the things I am working with them on.

It’s finding replacements for some of the materials that are just more readily available and they’re very open to it, which is the exciting thing.

Meredith Medland: You do a lot of inspiration in your consulting, sort of a green inspire of sorts. I would like to go back to the bleach and the leather examples that you gave, we might as well just unhook that right now and what our listeners know about that and I really would love to get even deeper into some of the things that you communicate in an example like the Pottery Barn so that our listeners really get a chance to experience a behavior change here, if they’re willing.

Zem Joaquin: Oh I can start with bleach and why I am so offensive though I grew up with it and it always felt wrong to me because every time, I touch it, my hands would get, they would start getting chased and occasionally bleeding and I think most people don’t actually touch it but you do put in on your clothes and you know, things that develop big holes in them because of material that you’re pouring on it. You might want to think about that.

So there is some of these things are just kind of obvious but you don’t think about them because your parents, your grandparents used it and we wouldn’t use a computer that our grandparents used. As a matter of fact, our grandparents didn’t use one.

So I think we need to be aware when we find out about things that maybe are a little bit challenging but the lucky thing is that there are so many alternative products that are fantastic like Shackley is using chlorine bleach at all, which actually yellows your clothes.

Meredith Medland: Now, can you get Shackleys in whole foods or…

Zem Joaquin: So Shackley, you can’t, it is though I have heard from a number of people. It’s the only one I haven’t tried but I’ve heard that, actually Trader Joe’s works very well. So there are things like oxy-clean which you can get it safe way which is definitely much better but Shackley is definitely the best of best and you do have to buy them direct so it’s more direct marketing but you can get one of their clean start kits online and their stuff is just actually across the board, very very good, but for other things you can get Method in Target and Method is made locally and it’s a fantastic company where the people are committed.

Shackley also is a local company. They’re on the east bay and there happen to be a lot in the bay area so we’re very lucky but going back to bleach, the one thing people need to be aware of is the most prevalent chemical in our waterways and I just want to give people a very visual example of dioxins so you know, we know Yel’Chenko who was the President of Yugoslavia who was poisoned by Russia, maybe but let’s just say he was poisoned and he was poisoned by a very small amount of dioxins. Those dioxins, you saw this gorgeous man going from being beautiful and also very much having all his capacities to being completely deformed.

So this is just, for me I mean I have to thank him for being able to give us that visual example and I know it’s unfortunate that that happened to him but I feel like there’s never been a better way to really encapsulate that.

Meredith Medland: Yeah, now let’s talk about leather. In Episode 1, we actually talked to Rowan Gabrielle who is the founder of and she talked about chemicals and tanneries and the impacts that we have on the innermost that we used in our clothing but you’re mentioning something just slightly different and that what do you, for you to share about your feelings and your knowledge around leather.

Zem Joaquin: Well, you know the funny thing is that I say this, people apologize to me, it seems every time I see them they will come and say, “Oh, I am wearing leather. Is it that bad? Do you hate leather?”

Honestly I don’t hate leather. I do eat meat. The caveat is I eat meat that is grown in a sustainable ecological manner that is sensitive to the animals. So by anime and ranch ethics, like that, but at the same time I eat meat so then I feel like let’s approach it with the native American approach that if you eat meat, you can use every single part of the animal, nothing is wasted. So I don’t have problem with people wearing or making furniture out of leather, it’s just that you need to be conscious of the process.

So in Italy, you aren’t even allowed to take a leather working job that works with chromium until you’re in ages and there is a variation in different companies and some have better processes and it varies but for me, why would I want that when you can get that vibrant, beautiful colors from leather that is tanned with vegetable dyes and they have some beautiful dyes.

Meredith Medland: So all you need to do is you contact the eco designer, you go to a store that is setup for people greening their homes and they can tell you more about that. Is that right?

Zem Joaquin: Absolutely, and in the bay area we have a multitude of companies. You’ve got Green Fusion and you’ve got, there’s a new design center in San Francisco that just opened up that has access to all of those and there’s companies like Two Collection, so if you’re working with a designer and you’re doing something high end then there are psychic collection and these organic leather.

So really the important thing is that you are asking for these materials and the demand, once the demand increases then everybody is going to be forced in that direction and that’s a good thing.

Meredith Medland: That is a good thing. All right, we’re getting ready to take a break to thank our sponsors and when we come back from the break, we’re going to hear about Zem’s eco challenge request that we’d like our listeners to take on through earth day, each one of our guest is giving you a challenge and we’re also going to talk about what it means to Zem to be living green and then we’re going to have a little fun and hear what’s coming up in her life and what really turned her on about the green movement. So stay tuned and we’ll be back right after this.

[commercial break]

Meredith Medland: Welcome back. My name is Meredith Medland. You’re listening to Living Green and I am talking to Zem Joaquin. Well Zem, let’s talk about creating healthy environments for children. You’re on a non-profit, on the board of a non-profit and I’d like to hear more about it and how that relates to your kind of green savvyness and sustainability.

Zem: Okay, so a ‘healthy child, healthy world’ which was just changed from Czech what was the, I won’t even say it’s too long but that’s why we changed it to ‘a healthy child, healthy world’ and they focus on education for parents around healthy environments for families.

So they’re working with [unintelligible] right now for this insert, for the coupon buck that they have quite explains about choices in making healthy choices for your children and for your family. So it explains some of the impacts of toxins in your environment and also gives you alternatives.

So things like cleaning products and why they’re so important and that if you’re spraying your counter top to get rid of bacteria but you’re leaving residue of really toxic chemicals but that’s not actually the good thing and that there are alternatives to that.

Meredith Medland: Let’s talk about some of the other ways so that the people who are parents can create a healthy environment for their children. Give me a few tips and tricks here.

Zem Joaquin: Okay, I would say the really important things are bedding, so organic bedding, organic beds, beds that are not treated with toxic chemicals like some of the traditional fire retardants which are really nasty and actually I have been linked to things like I said and definitely asthma, I mean we’re finding really high rates of asthma and my children both had asthma until I got rid of all of the clean sprays I was using and I changed their beds, I changed their bedding.

Also clothing, my son actually choose on his shirts which is annoying in itself but also I don’t want him exposed to these chemicals so what we buy only organic, especially shirts for him and some of the pants, I occasionally fudge but just to be aware that there is the store Spring in San Francisco that has beds and so this green fusion in marine that have these organic kind of beds or the natural top rubber beds that you get a wonderful sleep and also for yourselves because the kids go in your beds but that’s a thing and then also to get rid of traditional carpets. They are just dust collectors and it’s so difficult to get things out of your carpet.

So I really encourage people to go with cork and [unintelligible] that’s what I have which you’ve seen. They’re really beautiful and you can get them in vibrant colors and they’re actually made out of the memnets from the wine cork industry. So it’s once again coming for full circle and using everything that’s out there.

Meredith Medland: This is awesome. Now what’s the most exciting kind of sexy turned on cool thing about being involved in this movement right now? I mean you get to wear beautiful dresses and go to stunning events and hang out with celebrities and give me a story, give me something really exciting back to me.

Zem Joaquin: I don’t know, everyday seems to be exciting. I mean I love going to Iceland with Bill McDonough. I get to go to Iceland with Bill every year and that’s very exciting. We have amazing people who come with us like Cameron Diaz and what Darrel Hannah and things like that but to me, that’s really, that’s not the most exciting thing, I have to say.

I think really the most exciting thing is are there really cool products that are available now? Like let’s say the Tussler automotive, this vehicle which is just so sexy. It is based on a lotus chassis. It is unbelievably gorgeous, goes 0 to 60 in 3.4 seconds and you can go hundreds of miles on a single charge, sounds like superman but it’s high and I get to drive in this car. So I get rides on those, I don’t personally have one but that’s really exciting, just to see that people are changing the way they think about design and that that’s desirable.

We actually drive our Prius, which to me is a really exciting concept that people are actually making cars that are now considered quo, the Prius used to be just an unbelievably uncool thing to drive and now thanks to a lot of the celebrities driving them to the Oscars, which Global Green helps with every year and many other things, that’s really exciting but there are so many things like beautiful products, it’s beautiful clothing. You’ve got Linda Larimore, Eden and DelForte, Hutch Jeans, Levis just created an eco line of jeans which are beautiful and organic and I do want to emphasize how important it is to buy organic cotton clothing or alternatives, there are bamboo clothes, but 25% of the pesticides that are used and are actually used in the production of cotton.

Meredith Medland: Yeah, so that actually is something that I have just learned about maybe in the last few months and I’ve changed a lot of my wardrobe in episode 5 of Living Green. Our listeners got a chance to talk to Tierra DelForte and listened to what she has to say, yeah who you love and her jeans are awesome and now she has vase these, are you wearing them? Yeah, you are, I noticed that. Yeah, they’re great.

So check out episode 5 and listen to Tierra and she talks about Helen Merion and entire banks and how they’re really supporting organic cotton and clothing and it is one of the things that’s made the biggest difference in my life both in the way that it feels on my skin and the actions I take when I am wearing organic fabrics and clothing and I love it and my position on it is don’t go throw out your clothes and go, spend a lot of money to get organic, that’s ridiculous but just slowly try on and check out new fabrics.

Zem Joaquin: I am actually glad you brought up that plan because that’s my whole mission really in life is to actually give people some stuffs that they can take in addressing sustainability. So whether it’s your clothing or it’s furniture, I always say, first start with what you have, see what you can keep.

The second option is see if there’s something that already exist, that appeals to you. So go, look at vintage clothing. There’s some really amazing places available to us, like in the city there’s a store called Chris and helpers of the retarded actually has amazing clothes. They got Vanessa get these old clothes and they get Summer Tomkin’s old clothes and their stuff is gorgeous and they can’t wear them that many times because they’re photographed so much. So that’s available to you but if you really want something new, there are also some interesting, the next effort should be either get something that’s made out of old material, so there are a number of companies that are making things out of the waste product from Cashmere.

So old Cashmere sweaters are being turned into new Cashmere dresses and then lastly, if you don’t find something there, find something that is new but that is created in a sustainable manner and by people who care about these issues.

Meredith Medland: Exactly, and one of the things that I love to send out for the listeners who aren’t just spending tons of money right now in that for high on the finances, is one of my favorite eco things which is something I’ve been doing for years is giving an invitation out to all my girl friends and saying, “Bring the clothes you don’t want. We’re all going to have a clothing swap together”, and I mean that is the pinnacle of eco. You’re not buying anything new and you’re getting to feel sexy and stylish all over again.

Zem Joaquin: Absolutely, I think that’s a phenomenal idea and I’ve been actually meaning to go on for a long time and there never seem to be at a time I can get there but I wanted to just say that’s the same way that I approach furniture, as I was saying that is try to find things that are made out of the clean woods or find antiques and when I say antiques, that can be something you find at a branded sale.

I go to the Alameda flea market which I make, that’s I kind of have this pilgrimage and I go with my girlfriends and we find some unbelievable things and hopefully we find things we don’t need to refinish and if we do then we will finish them in an eco-friendly manner with non-toxicated reserves and water-based lacquers and then we’ll use organic cotton to wrap them and there are just so many clothings and that’s the thing that is actually really fun, that’s what I was wanting to remind people is, don’t approach in a way that it’s heavy or it’s not…it’s just such a pressure, instead think about all the co-opportunities there are.

Meredith Medland: And really the most important thing for all of us whether it’s the ecology movement or spirituality, is the interconnectedness and the connectedness of getting friends and family and people together because ultimately when I am making a purchase, that’s not what’s important to me, it’s the connection between the people who are close to me and making that intimacy deeper and if I can use ecology to get there even quicker then that sounds pretty good to me.

Zem Joaquin: Absolutely, I mean I think it’s such a hot topic and it’s so much fun to talk about and it’s also, I don’t want to talk about offsets because it’s kind of this mouthy as billy, bizarre, big concept to so many people and I just want to say that it’s not that complicated. It’s actually pretty simple and people will often accuse, people buy offsets like Al Gore or other people like that and using it as an excuse or as a mode of not having to take responsibility and I don’t look at it that way. So what I always say is, use it as a last resort.

So for me, I tried to do everything I can to mitigate my impact on the environment but when there’s something like travel that I absolutely cannot give up for my work and let’s fact it, I also love vacations and I do feel guilty about them so it’s not to beat my guilt, it’s just to say okay, I am going to take responsibility for the fact that I am traveling. So I will buy offsets, so that we can find alternative ways to get to other places.

So because I still want to fly to Europe and so when I fly to Europe, I am hoping that there will be alternative fuels and that a lot of it will be powered by solar power and wind power and so I want to make sure that I am helping create those new mode of technology.

Meredith Medland: That’s awesome. We’re just getting ready to wrap up in before we ask you the last question here, I just want to acknowledge you and thank you for everything that you’re dong and I am really clear that you’re contributing in a non-profit kind of way whether it’s with the children or Global Green and really working with mainstream companies to help them with style and sustainability and I think that that’s something really important. So thank you.

Zem Joaquin: Thank you.

Meredith Medland: All right, last question, so here we go. The eco request, challenge request for our listeners. So listeners if you can take this on through next year on Earth Day, we’re going to have a very very exciting contest coming out. Each of our guest is offering a challenge and here is Zem’s.

Zem Joaquin: So I would like to challenge everyone to get a commuter mug and you probably already have one because there’s swag at so many different events. So whether it’s your children’s school or something else, but take that eco mug and remember to bring it. Actually have a couple of them and remember to keep them in your car empty or use them in the morning and every time you go to star bucks or Pete’s, get them to fill your cup and actually you get ten cents off at both of them every time you bring it.

I know that’s not motivation in itself but you would be saving so many trees and you be keeping so much out of landfills that I think that’s a really wonderful, simple challenge and if you do it, you’ll get used to it and you’ll be inspired to do other things as well.

Meredith Medland: That’s true and your car will be cleaner too. We were just talking to Leslie Maggie, Leslie Maggie, a Green TV reporter, she says get a stainless steel bottle, stop using a plastic bottle. Zem, you’re going with the commuter mug and that means clean car, less garbage and more awareness. It sounds like a great thing.

Zem Joaquin: Yeah, and it’s actually much cleaner for you.

Meredith Medland: Exactly, and it benefits you. All right, so here’s a couple of things you got to know, you can email me at [email protected] and I am happy to answer your emails. You can also learn more about the guest on my show and things that I think are hot and ahead particularly in the music festival industry and what I think about celebrities going green on my blog, you can check that out at and please keep listening and bring your comments to the web. So Zem, thank you so much. You got any last parting words of wisdom for us today?

Zem Joaquin: Keep it green. Another thing is I just want to say, though this is not an eco challenge, I would like everyone to bring their own bags to the supermarkets. I think that is the most important thing you can do because you’ll be changing the entire industry and in Europe, everybody does bring their own bags to the grocery store. So this is more than a challenge, it’s just a shift of consciousness that you need to keep them, put them in your husband’s cars or your wife’s cars or your friend’s cars and encourage people to always bring their own bags and make it hip. Bring sexy bags to the supermarket and when you see your friends bringing cool bags, “love your bag, where did you get it”, and I think then we can really, we can all change the world together.

Meredith Medland: That’s right. All right, we’re changing the world together. Keep living green. My name is Meredith Medland, I am your host and I am so grateful that you’re listening to this podcast. So tune in more and have a great day. Stay green.


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