Bryan Cranston Builds Green Dream

Actor's 3 Palms beach house illustrates his commitment to the environment

Side Palms Brian Cranston

Once, on a JetBlue flight between Los Angeles and Boston, passengers dutifully handed over their in-flight trash to flight attendants holding large plastic bags stuffed with waste.

When Bryan Cranston was offered the chance to dump his trash like his fellow passengers, however, he paused, asking, “Where’s your recycling?”

“Oh, we don’t do that,” the flight attendant replied.

The thesp describes himself as being “stunned” in that moment. “How is that possible?” he asks.

The incident spurred the “Breaking Bad” star to pen a letter to JetBlue’s CEO, imploring the chief to execute a companywide policy change about recycling the endless plastic and paper waste created during flights.

Though a small incident, Cranston’s reaction to JetBlue’s recycling exemplifies the thesp’s proactive, eco-friendly paradigm. He says his green tendencies derive greatly from his parents, who grew up during the Depression.

“The idea of recycling was a part of their everyday life, and conserving and stretching and not wasting anything was the norm,” Cranston explains. “That’s how I was raised. I don’t know a time when I wasn’t recycling.”

The ultimate example of Cranston’s environmentally conscious lifestyle was literally built from the ground up: his Californian home, dubbed the 3 Palms Project.

Nestled next to the beach in Ventura, the home is a net-zero house, meaning it produces as much energy as it uses. Cranston and his wife, Robin Dearden, unveiled their green abode last year.

“I designed the home, and brought in architectural designer John Turturro,” Cranston says of the 3 Palms Project. “He and I have challenged each other to turn the house into what it has become. We have photovoltaic solar panels, water heating panels, radiant heat in the floors, and we use old-fashioned fans. We combine modern technology with some old, tried and true methods for retaining heat and cooling down.”

3 Palms, which recently landed a spread in Dwell magazine, includes recycled wood for cabinets, a low-energy refrigerator and sustainable building materials used during construction.
Cranston hopes his home inspires others to adopt a more eco-friendly, responsible way of living.

“I think there’s a misconception among the general public that, to live eco-friendly, you have to sacrifice — you have outdoor plumbing, you’re living on burlap, nothing is comfortable,” he says. “But that’s not the truth. We show how you can combine comfort, elegance and living responsibly without sacrifice.”