Do Your Part – Participate in Earth Hour 2012! March 31st, 8:30PM

Earth Hour
Saturday, March 31st
8:30 p.m. – 9:30 p.m.
Around the World

Hundreds of millions of people, businesses and governments around the world unite each year to support the largest environmental event in history – Earth Hour.

More than 5,200 cities and towns (including Chicago) in 135 countries worldwide switched off their lights for Earth Hour 2011 alone, sending a powerful message for action on climate change. It also ushered in a new era with members going Beyond the Hour to commit to lasting action for the planet. Check out the website for additional information, local events, photos, educator resources, and how to go beyond Earth Hour to make a year-round commitment to reduce energy use.  It can be as simple as flipping a switch.

Dirty Hands at Working Bikes Cooperative

Content Creator, including photographs: C3 Blogger Tom from

Working Bikes Cooperative is a non-profit organization in Chicago devoted to the motto: Reduce Reuse Recycle. They collect neglected bikes and tune them up to reuse & sell. The revenue is used to ship the remaining bikes to different corners of planet earth so that a poor person in Tanzania, Guatemala, or Peru can get to work and make money to feed his family.

Stored in a warehouse, they appear as a sea of bikes. There are old bikes, and older bikes. Rusty bikes, and dirty bikes. Bikes without wheels, and bikes with banana seats. Some bikes are blue, others have a white basket. Everywhere you look…bikes, bikes, bikes.

On Tuesday January 31, two trainees with the Chicago Conservation Corps (myself & Ben) attended Volunteer Night, which happens every Tuesday night. We immediately noticed the benefits of volunteering at Working Bikes, including:

Chicago Conservation1. Free food

2. Learning the skills to fix my own bike

3. Finding inspiration from the numerous posters (left)

Ben and I removed axels from tires for 2 hours while other volunteers fixed chains, polished metal, and attached pedals. All of these bikes are on their way to helping a good cause. Unfortunately, the demand for bikes is much higher than the rate at which they can be repaired, so volunteers are in high demand. Volunteering is simple. Go to the store or call during business hours and notify a staff member that you wish to lend a helping hand.

We want to warn you though, being kind can sometimes be dirty. Bike repair is accompanied by oil & grease, so wear appropriate clothing and prepare for dirty hands. Thank you for reading, and don’t forget, Reduce Reuse Recycle.

Conservation is simple

How To Make Air-friendly Cleaning Products

air-friendly cleaning products

We are in the heart of winter, and most likely, your windows are closed and fresh air is at a premium. So don’t pollute the air in your home with cleaning products that contain hazardous chemicals and volatile organic compounds. We will make it easy for you to find another option. Here is a recipe for making your own air-friendly cleaning products. A friendly mixture of science, conservation, and cooking skills.

Basic All-Purpose Cleaner Formula

1/2 teaspoon baking soda or 2 teaspoons borax

1/2 teaspoon liquid soap detergent

2 cups hot water

spray bottle

Combine everything into the spray bottle and shake to blend.

Content Creator: C3 Trainee Tom from

C3 Leader, Amy Talbot leads a Winter Wonderland Energy Savings Workshop, February 25th, 1PM

Explore Energy Savings

C3 Leader, Amy Talbot leads a Winter Wonderland Energy Savings Workshop

Saturday, February 25th

1 p.m. – 3 p.m.

Instituto Health Sciences Career Academy (IHSCA), Community Room

2520 S. Western Ave.

Contact to register.

Join Amy and her C3 team to hear about actions you can take to not only help the environment but also save money. Workshop topics include properly caring for outdoors plants in the winter; improving your snow salting techniques with the right products and methods; installing high efficiency showerheads to save on water and energy costs; replacing old light bulbs with energy efficient compact fluorescent light bulbs; and changing furnace filters to improve air quality and save money on energy costs. The first 40 families to arrive will receive energy saving kits and additional items will be raffled off at the close of the workshop. Lunch will be provided and Spanish language translation will be available.

C3 Leader, Stephanie Douglass leads Adventures in Green Cleaning, February 22nd, 5PM

Explore Green Cleaning

C3 Leader, Stephanie Douglass leads Adventures in Green Cleaning

Wednesday, February 22nd

5 p.m. – 6 p.m.

Uncommon Ground

1401 W. Devon Ave

For more information, contact 260-ALL-GROW.

Indoor air can be two to five times more polluted than outdoor air.  Come learn the best ways to prepare non-toxic cleaning solutions for your home at America’s Greenest Restaurant. Lessons on air issues affecting our health and green cleaning supplies are provided.  There will also be raffles, dinner discounts, and lots of recipe resources.

Working Bikes Cooperative Volunteer Night, Jan 31st, 5PM

Explore Bike Maintenance

Tuesday, January 31st

5 p.m. – 9 p.m.

Working Bikes, 2434 S. Western Ave

No registration necessary.  For more information, contact

Come out and learn about bike maintenance at Working Bikes, a local non-profit that diverts bicycles from the waste stream by repairing them for sale and charity.  Have a fun-filled night and learn how to keep any bike running smoothly.