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OakTown Gardens


OakTown Gardens: Reducing waste to ‘green’ Lincoln Elementary

This year, Lincoln Elementary did something few schools would have dreamt of 10 years ago: It formalized a green connection with Waste Management to exchange food scraps for compost., 

OakTown Gardens: Growing It All

Max Osterhaus visits his father’s Wisconsin ranch in the winter, 

OakTown Gardens: Blending naturalness, absence of pretense in 

Marcia Kai-Kee and Ed Oshika’s street-facing 

OakTown Gardens: Adams Point oasis inspires owner, area 

Adams Point oasis inspires owner, area residents.

OakTown Gardens: Renovating through experimentation | Oakland 

Digital artist, poet and storyteller George Aguilar has spent the last 

OakTown Gardens: Using a garden as business inspiration 

 “We don’t watch TV. We spend time in the garden.”  

OakTown gardens: Cultivating through hurdles | Oakland Local

Research shows that gentle gardening reduces stress levels and blood pressure. But, that doesn’t make it any easier to stick your hands in dirt

OakTown Gardens: Professional landscaper shares own garden at

Robin Dunlavy, co-owner of Garden Girls, keeps the roughly 10×20-foot area in her own home’s front yard brimming with plants

OakTown Gardens: Growing indoors | Oakland Local

 Dalmar Smith didn’t let apartment living get in the way of having a garden. When the financial services research assistant found

OakTown Gardens: Turning a small space into a ‘calming’ oasis

Jul 24, 2012 – OakTown Gardens: Turning a small space into a ‘calming’ oasis. Over the last 16 years, Mr. Jay has turned his East Oakland

Hey Oakland: Show us your gardens! | Oakland Local

Hey Oakland: Show us your gardens!


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Biking on screen

Ride The Divide covers the world’s toughest mountain bike race, 2700 miles along the Continental Divide in the Rocky Mountains. Using the natural environments, the racers and the videographers as characters, this movie pushes the boundaries of creating film.

Ride The Divide Movie Trailer from Ride The Divide on Vimeo.

Now I want to see Bicycle Dreams, “…a riveting portrait of extreme courage in the face of inhuman obstacles…the power of desire and the strength of the human will.” – The Love of Movies

More movies about bikes.


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Farmers and activists gather in Cancun for climate change and social justice

UNORCA farmer listens to speakers in Oaxaca. Photo by Irene Florez

An estimated 40,000 UN delegates, journalists, farmers, and climate activists were in Cancun for the COP 16 UN summit on climate and the three alternative climate and social justice summits.

On the ground, growers and unions like Unorca, which represents indigenous farmers, and the SME, which represents electric workers, are against REDD and against carbon trading. Many stressed that we should begin fighting climate change by supporting local non GMO agriculture and that heavy emitters like the US should reduce their carbon footprint.

With little resolution to the problems presented by changing weather conditions, the global south and climate activists are demanding change. This segment covers a two week period of interviews with climate justice activists, making their way to Cancun, who are experiencing environmental challenges first hand.  Denise Perry of Florida’s PowerUCenter, Luther Allen of Direct Action for Rights and Equality, Mickey McCoy of Kentuckians for the Commonwealth (KFTC), and Sunyoung Yang of the Labor/Community Strategy Center share their thoughts.

SME, electric worker's union, members stand outside of their union hall in Tepuxtepec. Photo by Irene Florez


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Recycling workers feel the strain

Recycling Bins at a recycling station. Photo by ThreadedThoughts, flickr, Creative Commons license

What is it like to work the recycling assembly line? At Waste Management’s Davis Street Recycling Center located near the Oakland Airport, roughly 80 workers sort through 3,000 tons of  waste per day. This includes smelly food scraps, aluminum, paper, and glass, which provide Oakland with valuable export commodities.

Isabel, an Oakland recycling center employee talks about her job and union contract with Waste Management, the nation’s largest waste services provider.  She and fellow co-workers are beginning to feel the pressure and strain as their contract expires later this month. She asks that Bay Area residents support center employees in organizing for better wages. To lend support, contact Oakland city council members and express support for recycling workers: OAKLANDNET.COM/GOVERNMENT/COUNCIL/CITY-OFFICIALS

Street level recycling bins. Photo by Tim-Tak, Flickr, Creative Commons license


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Population contemplation

Crowds at the Eat Real Festival 2010 photo by 5112 http://www.flickr.com/photos/johnjoh/

According to the 2007 American Community Survey in 2007 there were 6.958 million people living in the Bay Area. That’s nearly 7 million people watching movies, walking to the bus stop, smoking, eating, sleeping and carrying out the myriad, disparate activities that people do in cities. Following are excerpts from two very different interviews carried out at this year’s US Social Forum.

Inspired by the Bay Area Population at large this piece touches on
settling our minds by catching a short glimpse into the various
viewpoints that surround us.