Sostane Portland

Jessie Hand


I am a young, female web designer in Portland who is interested in sustainability issues and how they relate to my profession. I am also looking to start a small business and would like to learn from others who are running their businesses in ways that minimize their carbon footprint. I am particularly interested in Oregon-specific issues relating to clear cutting and the destruction of the Oregon Coast Range forests.

Green Steps Taken

I have taken many small steps to reduce my carbon footprint. I carpool regularly, have begun composting my food waste and organically growing most of the vegetables that my family eats. I also carry my own silverware and hand towels instead of using disposable products. I try to avoid plastics and non-recyclable / non-recycled products and regularly research the companies I purchase from in order to ensure they are meeting their responsibilities to the environment and to the people inhabiting this region before choosing to purchase their products. In the workplace, I have been working with my employer to help the organization become more sustainable, even managing to get approval for the design of a decreased-energy website for Earth Day.

Having Trouble With

The biggest hurdle for myself is the distance that I have to commute for work and the gas that is consumed by that. Even though I manage to carpool regularly, I would prefer to have a situation where my employer and home were more closely located, and I could spend less time driving and more time being a productive member of my community.

Giving Back

I have done a little bit of volunteering in the community (particularly with Portland’s pesticide-free parks) and I have done some advocacy. I am hoping, however, that this group will be a good opportunity for me to make more connections with people who are actively engaged in efforts related to sustainability in the local community.