Dear Dot ™

Dear Dot is here to answer all your sustainable living questions from her perch on the porch. Got a question for Dot? Send her a note for a chance to be featured in an upcoming post.

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Dear Dot: What’s the Best Way to Store Leftovers? 

Dear Dot, How long does leftover food last in a refrigerator? Is it important to cover or seal it, and why?  –David Dear David, “Food” is a pretty broad category. Some “leftover food,” of course, lasts months, like peanut...

Dear Dot: What Is a Smart Plug?

Dear Dot, What is a smart plug? –Julia D. The Short Answer: A smart plug is a device (available on Amazon) that plugs into an outlet and into which you can plug appliances and other devices. You can...

Dear Dot: Is There an Eco-Friendly Way to Whiten My Whites?

Dear Dot, To enhance whiteness, are you suggesting to add lemon juice, white vinegar, and baking soda with the laundry strips? How much? Thank you. –Kathy Dear Kathy, While Dot is happy to let pet fur and dirt congregate in...

Dear Dot: Is Organic Food Really Better?

Dear Dot, I’m a Harvard alum and a recent article in the Gazette indicated that organic food is no better than conventionally grown. What say you, Dot?  –David The Short Answer: There are many factors that determine if organic...

Dear Dot: Is it Okay if I Plant Seed Paper? 

Dear Dot, I recently received a card that’s printed on “seed” paper — that paper that has wildflower seeds embedded in it that we, presumably, should plant. But with all the talk about planting native species,...

Dear Dot: Should I Burn Paper or Send it to Landfill?

Dear Dot, I am charged with supplying toilet paper in public toilets. This consists of replacing eighty to 100 rolls per week, leaving me with 80 – 100 tubes and wrappers. Which is worse for the...

Dear Dot: Is Pollution the Reason for a Beautiful Sunset?

Dear Dot, I saw the most amazing sunset last night. Someone told me the beautiful red color is because of pollution? Is there any truth to that? —Whitney The Short Answer: Those vibrant colors we see at...

Dear Dot: Where Should I Buy a House?

I’m a realtor curious about how climate change is going to impact where people will want to live. What are some climate change concerns people should be considering before committing to a next home/next location? –Karen Dear...

Dear Dot: How Can I Invest in Earth-Friendly Funds?

Dear Dot, Does Dot know anything about responsible investing for 401(k) plans? I was looking at mine last night and realized I have an aggressive portfolio and know nothing about the companies. —Ali Dear Ali, While Dot tends to...

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A Conversation With Dr. Craig Stanford

In his work as an evolutionary biologist, Dr. Craig Stanford has traveled around the world studying the ecology and social behavior of chimpanzees, mountain...

The Ecology Center is Making Regenerative Organic Farms Mainstream

Evan Marks grew up as your typical Orange County surfer, catching waves on the beautiful Southern California beaches.  He quickly realized that rainstorms often made...

Celebrating Vegan Eateries in Los Angeles

Global events and media organization The Vegan Women Summit (VWS) hosts events to “empower women to build a kinder and more sustainable world,” and...