The Austin Environmental Directory is meant as a user friendly guide to readers for learning about environmental issues, for identifying and purchasing environmental products, and for becoming involved in environmental organizations. The print version is distributed free to the Austin area.
The Directory is edited by Paul Robbins, a longtime environmental activist residing in Austin. He wrote about 60% of the issue, with government agencies and non-profit organizations producing sections relevant to their programs. These agencies and organizations received this space at greatly reduced cost.
Businesses in subjects that the book discusses and local environmental groups are given free listings. However, the book is supported through advertising and contributions from individuals and environmental groups.
This Year’s Topics
This is the seventh issue of the Directory since 1995. The author has continued his theme from the 2006 Directory of what people will do when they run out of oil. The wrecking ball that was 2008 left lasting damage on the environment and economy. Long-term scarcities of energy, food, and materials, coupled with increased demand from a growing world population, threatens to hinder or prevent recovery.
This theme includes three stories. The first is “Synfuels and Redemption.” As high oil prices continue to threaten the transportation sector, industry and government are seriously planning alternatives fuels made from tar sands, coal, natural gas, oil shale, and biofuels. The world is facing two alarming and conflicting crises, Peak Oil and global warming. Peak Oil might demand that carbon-based synfuels be developed at a rapid pace to support the existing transportation infrastructure, while global warming would demand that even current fossil fuel use be abandoned.
A second story will discuss alternative vehicles and strategies that can be accessed by individuals now or in the near future to lower oil use and its environmental effects.
The third story is “The Zero Energy Suburb.” While this sounds like an oxymoron, technology does exist to convert the American Dream from running on fossil fuels to clean energy, with a cost that is not much higher.
Most of the information in these articles has never been reported by any other Austin publication. The new edition also includes an introduction to Austin’s climate protection program, and updated or rewritten sections on recycling, green building, clean energy, regional parks, environmental groups, locally grown food, and water conservation.
About the Editor
Paul Robbins has been an environmental activist and consumer advocate since 1977. In the early 1980s, he helped start the City of Austin’s nationally renowned clean energy programs. He has written extensively on green business and technologies, as well as articles on clean energy and energy policy, food and the environment, recycling, and green building.
Robbins’ work on clean energy and the environment has been publicly acknowledged. He has won awards for individual achievement from the City of Austin and Keep Austin Beautiful. In 2007, the Austin City Council named a downtown district chilling station in his honor. In 2010, he was voted Best Environmentalist by the Austin Chronicle reader’s poll.
Edited and Produced by Paul Robbins
Energy and Environmental Group Sections by Paul Robbins. He also contributed to the articles on Solid Waste & Recycling, Clean Energy, Green Building, and Parks.
Locally-Grown Food Section by Paul Robbins, with contributions from Brandi Clark, Christa French, and Tony Switzer
Solid Waste & Recycling Section by Texas Campaign for the Environment Fund: Mary Grace Hebert, Robin Schneider, Zac Trahan and Ethan Wool.
Green Building Section by Liana Kallivoka, with contributions from Shelly Comer, Patricia House, Katie Jensen, Anne Johnson, Mary McLeod, Richard Morgan, Lisa Nutt, and Sarah Talkington
Clean Energy Section by Donylle Green, Jerrel Gustafson, Elaine Hermann, Tim Kisner, Lyn Von Roeder, and Fred Yebra
Climate Protection Pages by Sascha Petersen
Parks & Preserves Section by Mike Crevier, Clark Hancock, Allison Hardy, and Charles Williams
Air Quality Page by Deanna Altenhoff
Water Conservation Section by Kevin Anderson, Gail McGlamery, and Mark Wieland
Cover Art: Margaret Campbell Bamberger (picture) and Susan Lippman (coloring)
Artists and Photographers: Kevin Anderson, Merrick Ales, Carlos Cordova, John Dolley, Maggie Duval, Paul Everitt, Thomas McConnell, Paul Robbins, and Eugene Savage
Computer Assistance by Bill Christensen and Jeanine Sih
Proofreaders and Advisors: Nan Blake, Rebecca Brenneman, Toye Goodson, Kathy Guido, Chris Herbert, Matt Johnson, Hasan Rammaha, Bob Russell, Tony Switzer, Gail Vittori, and Lyn Von Roeder
Though great effort has been made to ensure the accuracy of the information in the Austin Environmental Directory, the publication assumes no responsibility and disclaims any injury, damage, or economic loss resulting from the use or effect of any product or information specified within the publication. Information in the Austin Environmental Directory does not necessarily reflect the endorsement of the advertising sponsors. While this publication is meant as a guide for environmental products and services, it cannot be a substitute for product quality assurance by the manufacturers and providers of these products and services; it cannot be a replacement for preferences of individual consumers; and it cannot be an alternative to common sense employed by consumers who use the products and services discussed herein. It is recommended that consumers follow instructions in product and service manuals and on labels to ensure safe use.
© Paul Robbins 2010 – All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced in any form or by any means, either electronic or mechanical, including recording, photocopying, or by any information retrieval and storage system, without written permission of the copyright holder. Artwork and pictures were produced specifically for the Directory, reprinted with permission, or believed to be in the public domain.