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A City-Wide Sustainability Celebration

sustainable philly
In a society that often chooses convenience and efficiency over quality and thoroughness, there are many Philadelphians looking to reset this mindset. One of them is photographer Brad Maule, who kayaked 112 miles on the Schuylkill to document litter. Brad points out that we need to change the mentality of “we need to have more cleanups” and promote the message of “we need to stop littering in the first place.” As an effort to bring awareness to unsung heroes, like Brad, and progressive movements in Philadelphia,
SustainPHL is the first sustainability event of its kind. On Thursday, August 18th from 6 -10 PM, this celebration of positive impact will take place at WHYY on 150 6th Street in Old City. VIP and general tickets are available here.

SustainPHL’s mission is to commemorate local visionaries who are making a difference in their communities. Guests will hear inspirational stories from Philly changemakers and attend the live award ceremony, where winners will receive recycled awards created by RAIR. Presenters include sustainability entrepreneur Judy Wicks and Philadelphia Office of Sustainability Director, Christine Knapp.

With an open bar and sampling from restaurants, guests can enjoy drinks and fare starring locally-sourced ingredients, such as Valley Milkhouse Cheese, Philly Food Works, Cabot Cheese, Pure Fare, Crust Vegan Bakery and more to be announced soon. Engaging interactive “Munch & Learn” events will feature educational how-to’s with Home Brewed Events, the Resource Exchange, Amanda Feifer from Phickle Ferments, DIY composting expert Tyler Weaver, and more.

Buy your tickets today before they sell out! And in the meantime, here are some easy, green tips that can help make your everyday life more sustainable.  The most important thing to remember is – little by little, all these efforts can add up to a lot if we’re all dedicated to meaningful change.


  1. It takes 1.39L to make 1L of bottled water, so if you haven’t already… drop that Poland Spring. Instead, grab a BPA-free Brita-filter water bottle so you can refill anywhere without worrying about drinking unfiltered water.
  2. While you’ve made a commendable effort to purchase a reusable tote at the check-out counter, chances are you always forget them at home or in your car. Try these Envirosax roll-up nylon bags that are worth the recyclable impact they can have over their many years of use. They’re lightweight and easy to carry in a purse or even a pocket.
  3. Conventional meat products often involve horrifying animal cruelty, massive environmental effects, and health hazards everywhere you turn. Use resources like Eat Wild’s regional map to find a local source near you. If you must go to the grocery store, look for Animal Welfare Approved or Certified Humane labels.
  4. Limit your meat dilemmas and join a local CSA to start trying Meatless Mondays. Be careful though, if you think you’re saving the environment by buying organic, make sure it’s local and not flown in from, say, Chile… That’s a long haul journey for your grapes to go, which only replaces an environmental benefit with a harmful setback.  
  5. Unplug electric appliances that are not in use, such as your electronics chargers, coffee maker, toaster, and many more around the house. Even in off mode, they use electricity. Read more energy-saving tips from PECO.
  6. Lighten your carbon footprint when you travel. When you cannot walk the distance, use technology and abundant transit resources that the Greater Philadelphia area is so lucky to have. Cruise throughout the city with Indego bike share program. Join forces with friendly neighbors using uberPOOL or lyft. Ride all throughout Southeastern PA on SEPTA’s subways, buses, trolleys and regional rails. Cross state lines with PATCO, which goes to South Jersey, or NJ Transit, which goes as far as Atlantic City and New York City. Even more cities are accessible with Amtrak, MegaBus and Boltbus at 30th Street Station.


What are your favorite sustainability tips? Please share with us in the comments or on social media!