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Tree-planting tour travels state


Goleta Family School got a visit Tuesday from Common Vision's Fruit Tree Tour, a group that travels around the state spreading a message of environmentalism by planting trees. The event also gave students a chance to try their hand at African drumming. The group's Leo Buc, below, leads the students in a song from Africa.


Eco-minded school now has orchard


by Rob Kuznia

With the help of a traveling nonprofit organization that promotes sustainable living, students at Monte Vista School on Thursday turned a large lawn area into an orchard with 20-plus trees.

Because of its reputation for garden-based projects, the elementary school in the Hope School District was among 45 schools selected by Common Vision to receive several trees and a visit from about 20 volunteers with the nonprofit group.

The students and volunteers planted a "fruit forest" including banana trees, orange trees, lemon trees and more. The lesson is meant to teach students about sustainable living.

The group, which showed up in a multicolored van that runs on vegetable oil, has also hit schools in Los Angeles, Oakland and San Jose.


Biodiesel becomes fuel for thought


by Sarah Anchors

Abraham Powell says the exhaust from his car smells like Mongolian barbecue, and some of his friends claim to scent the air with the smell of french fries as they drive by.

They can accurately claim that their vehicles smell as sweet because they run their diesel engines on recycled vegetable oil, taken from doughnut shops, greasy spoons, Chinese restaurants and the like

"It smells a lot better," he said.

But the smell is only secondary. Biodiesel, as it's called, is much better for the environment than fossil fuels, according the the U.S. Department of Energy. Its emissions are less harmful, and it's made from recycled oil that would otherwise be thrown away.

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© 2003-2020 Common Vision