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Google's first mashup goes green

Map-based Web site offers tips on earth-friendly places to visit in the U.S. during summer vacation. Images: Google's green mash-up

Google has launched its first mashup--a map-based Web site with information about earth-friendly locations in five of the U.S.'s top travel destinations.

The site, at maps.google.com/green, features information on and video tours of spots in San Francisco, Los Angeles, Las Vegas, New York and Orlando, Fla., as well as tips for "traveling green" during the summer using Google Maps.

Google goes green

"This is important to us," Luanne Calvert, creative director at Google, said Tuesday. "One of the big objectives for Google as a corporation is to promote environmental protection," she said.

Listings include the Las Vegas Natural History Museum and the Go Raw Cafe in Las Vegas, the Tree People park and EcoLimo in Los Angeles, the Skyscraper Museum and Central Park in New York, the Forever Florida nature preserve and Horse World Riding Stables in Orlando and, in San Francisco the Red Victorian Bed and Breakfast and the Exploratorium.

The Earth Day Network, which sponsors Earth Day every April, recommended the locations listed. The Web site has been live since last week and is being announced on Wednesday. Additional listings, cities and countries will be added in the future.

"The goal is to have everyone using Google Maps to get around this summer," Calvert said. "The motto is Green not Grim...green can be fun."

By "green" Google means "things that are earth friendly," Calvert said. That includes "restaurants that are about sustainable living" and "a car service in New York that only uses (gas-electric hybrid) Prius vehicles," she said.