Fall 2011

Member Profile: Living the Green Life | Catalyst Fall 2011


Living the Green Life

UCS members George and Kristine Karnezis are proponents of sustainable agriculture who have been working to bring fresh, nutritious food to their Portland, OR, community for years. By helping out on their son and daughter-in-law’s organic farm, they supply produce to Portland’s restaurants and grocers, which in turn supports the local economy.

George, a retired college professor, and Kristine, an attorney, do all they can to live a green life and minimize their carbon footprint: they plant trees around town along with other volunteers, participate in their electric utility’s “green” power program (which supports renewable energy development), and take advantage of the city’s bike paths and public transportation whenever possible. This helps avoid vehicular emissions and keep Kristine’s asthma under control.

Before moving to Portland, she experienced too many places where, upon arriving, “you see a haze of pollution around you.” That was not an option for a family that enjoys the outdoors as much as Kristine’s. “I can breathe here,” she says. (See our cover story to read about the impact global warming is already having on air quality and public health in the United States.)

George and Kristine can’t remember how they first learned about UCS, but they know why they have remained devoted members since joining in 1979: they love how easy it is to keep apprised of our work and to donate through the Partners for the Earth monthly giving program, which provides predictable income to an organization they trust deeply. “We’re not professional scientists,” Kristine explains, “but we feel strongly that sound science is essential to solving environmental problems.”