Cover of the April 2010 "green issue" of Common Ground magazine, featuring a glossy image of the earth and various environmental article titles.

April 2010

The Green Issue

It was a big deal, back in 1969, when San Francisco mayor Joseph Alioto officially proclaimed March 21 (vernal equinox) to be Earth Day in the city. Once again, San Francisco was ahead of the curve. The rest of the nation quickly followed by adopting April 22—a date perceived to coincide with better weather on college campuses. So here we are 40 years later, the weather’s getting warm, and we’ve a plethora of activities this month around the bay whereupon we can renew our vows to the earth. Like Thanksgiving, every Earth Day should be observed 24/7/365.

We had a lot of fun transitioning from the Sex issue to the Food issue. At the Natural Products West Expo in Anaheim, our March edition was getting passed around among the muckety mucks in the natural foods industry, helping fan a buzz of concern over GMOs in our food supply. It is my great hope that here in the Bay Area, readers will wake up to the reality that we’ve been collectively dosed (particularly through corn and soy) and begin to demand change.

For example I simply won’t eat the corn chips at my taqueria anymore. When I explain the GMO situation to the owners, they’re intrigued. If a few more like me come along, eventually change will come. A clearly labeled GMO-free chip will be served. A tipping point of consumer rejection of GMOs needs to start somewhere. Why not here? Why not now?

With this Green issue we transition to other environmental issues, notably perils of privatized water. Hopefully the articles by Michelle Walrath and Kym Trippsmith will spur interest. The documentary Tapped is recommended viewing in order to capture an overview about the politics around municipal water. In a separate article, Kym Kuzmic introduces us to the aquaponics solution.

Imagine the surprise to all involved when last week I had two Kyms (both with this rare spelling of their name) concurrently holding on the phone, each inquiring about the status of their water article in the April issue of Common Ground! A get-together is planned.

Katrina Vaillancourt takes a look at Proposition 16 in Marin County, where local elected officials are trying to represent their constituents’ right to break free of PG&E’s energy monopoly. Citizens want to be able to supply themselves with higher concentrations of clean energy but are up against a motivated and well-funded adversary.

And the light brown apple moth (LBAM) still flutters at the heart of a controversial dispute over its perceived danger to local agriculture. Hopefully, good sense will prevail in officialdom, and we won’t see a return of concerned moms on street corners waving “Stop the Spray” placards.

Along with the Earth Day activities, there are plenty of other Green happenings in April. We hope to see you at an Easter parade, the Body Mind Expo in Santa Clara, or at both the Green Festival and New Living Expo, each taking place at the Concourse Exhibition Center.

For May, the magazine’s theme will be Bay Pride—the amazing things that happen here and why we just love this place. The articles have yet to been assigned, but it will come together somehow. Your ideas are always welcome at [email protected].

Don’t forget to get a good look at all the great offerings our advertisers are proposing. Say you saw it in Common Ground.

Many blessings,


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