A Chat with Actress Amy Smart

“If the future is regenerative and not just sustainable, then we do have a way to face climate change and save our planet. One of the most important steps we can take is to rebuild our soils.”
--Amy Smart

Actress and activist Amy Smart was recently featured in The Compost Story, a short film that launched last week in time to kick off International Compost Awareness Week. The Compost Story, directed by Finian Makepeace, also starred Hollywood heavyweights Adrian Grenier, Rosario Dawson, Amy Smart, Kendrick Sampson and Paul Blackthorne.

The Compost Story is a wakeup call, and a call to action. In the US, 60 billion pounds of food materials go to landfill every year, which expels methane gas, and can lead to global warming. And, even though over 51 percent of the food scraps that go to landfill are compostable, only five percent get composted.

The simple act of composting can enrich our soil, lead to tastier and more nutritious food and help reverse climate change. So what are we waiting for? Here are some thoughts from Smart, in case you need further convincing! thecompoststory.com

Rona Berg: Why is composting so important?

Amy Smart: Composting is the way that nature has evolved so that anything that was once living can actually become the source of more life. That means it's a regenerative substance! When we compost, we are not only reducing organic waste that creates methane in our landfill, we are creating a substance that will help plants pull even more carbon out of the atmosphere allowing for us to build carbon-filled healthy soil and helping balancing our climate.

RB: What do you say to people who think it is impossible to reverse climate change and clean up the planet?

AS: Humans generally assume that our relationship with the rest of the natural world is degenerative, meaning we expect that we will deplete and use up natural resources. This is our experience because it's what we have seen happen.

However, there are more and more farmers and land stewards everyday who are teaching us that we can regenerate and restore our land, while we are producing more food to feed our growing population. If the future is regenerative and not just sustainable, then we do have a way to face climate change and save our planet. One of the most important steps we can take is to rebuild our soils.

RB: Every time we use a beauty product it goes down the drain--but where does it go? Into our rivers, oceans, waterways! Everything goes somewhere. What do you think about when you consider what skincare to use? What to avoid?

AS: Our skin is the largest organ we have and it absorbs everything we put on it, so it’s important to look at the ingredient list and learn about what is good and what to avoid so our body doesn’t drink up those toxins in the products. Same goes for cleaning products and everything we put down the drain...

If it’s full of harsh chemicals it will end up in our oceans, rivers and streams. Even if it goes to a sewage treatment plant they don’t have strong enough chemicals and filters to clean it out so it slips thru and ends up polluting our waters.

RB: Eating organic for one week has shown a six percent decrease in pesticides in our bodies. What are three top actions we can take to help advance organic farming?

AS: First would be buying organic so there is greater demand and then more organic produce will be produced. Second, I would say, is supporting our local farmers at farmer’s markets. Third, would be changing laws to make them stricter about what you can put on the land for farming and starting the bans on harsh pesticides etc., and banning GMOs. At the least making a law that forces companies to disclose GMOs in products, labeling them.


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Rona Berg

Rona Berg

Editor-In-Chief at Organic Spa Magazine
Editor-in-chief of Organic Spa Media, longtime journalist and best-selling author of Beauty: The New Basics and Fast Beauty: 1000 Quick Fixes (Workman Publishing), Rona Berg is the former Editorial Director of ELLE and Deputy Style Editor for the New York Times Magazine. She has been cited as an industry expert by Huffington Post, Fox News and New York Magazine and contributed to and been quoted in dozens of publications. Berg co-chairs the Personal Care Committee of the non-profit Green Spa Network, is a Charter Advisory Board Member of the Nutritional Aesthetics Alliance, and is a frequent speaker at conferences around the globe.
Rona Berg

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