Archive for the Environment Category
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New Wave in Oil Cleanup Technology Spurred by Competition
When the Deepwater Horizon rig exploded in 2010, we all watched in horror as oil gushed unchecked into the Gulf of Mexico. Cleanup crews flocked to the scene, but their ability to respond to the spill was limited: they were stuck using the same technology deployed during the Exxon Valdez disaster, 21 years earlier. Those outdated, inefficient booms and skimmers managed to pick up just 3 percent of the nearly 5 billion barrels of oil spilled in the Gulf. Philanthropist Wendy Schmidt, head of the Schmidt Family Foundation and an NRDC board member, knew America could do better. In June 2010 she sponsored the Wendy Schmidt Oil Cleanup X Challenge, promising $1.4 million in prize money for teams that could efficiently recover more than 2,500 gallons of oil per minute in a field test – doubling the industry standard. This relatively modest prod apparently inspired the oil industry to do... Continue Reading
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The Story of Broke: Nov 8, 2011
The United States isn’t broke; we’re the richest country on the planet and a country in which the richest among us are doing exceptionally well. But the truth is, our economy is broken, producing more pollution, greenhouse gasses and garbage than any other country. In these and so many other ways, it just isn’t working. But rather than invest in something better, we continue to keep this ‘dinosaur economy’ on life support with hundreds of billions of dollars of our tax money. The Story of Broke calls for a shift in government spending toward investments in clean, green solutions—renewable energy,... Continue Reading
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Youth Sustainability Conference Makes IMPACT!
The Co-operators is fuelling the push to a more sustainable future by engaging the passion of a collective group of Canadian youth through its program, IMPACT! The Co-operators Youth Program for Sustainability Leadership. In partnership with the Natural Step Canada, the David Suzuki Foundation, and several other organizations and Canadian universities and colleges, The Co-operators hosted its second gathering of the some of the country’s brightest young minds Sept. 15-18 in Guelph. The IMPACT! Youth Conference for Sustainability Leadership is billed as an opportunity for students to gather with sustainability experts from business, non-government organizations and academia and discuss some... Continue Reading
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The Hidden Eco-Benefits of Working from Home
Some time ago I posted on how we built a home office in an storage old barn using reclaimed materials. And I have to say that working from home is one of my favorite thing about my current job(s). Every now and then, of course, we hear of studies that claim that telecommuting is more polluting than working from an office—studies that Lloyd usually debunks in pretty short order. But nevertheless these get me thinking—telecommuting has way more eco-benefits than just saving on gas from your commute. Here are a few of my favorites. (Yes, some of them involve peeing.)... Continue Reading
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‘Poop’ Power
Maryland is seeking proposals for the purchase of electricity generated from animal waste like poultry litter and livestock manure, the governor’s office announced on Thursday. Eligible energy suppliers must have a capacity of up to 10 megawatts, connect directly to the grid and be able to begin providing power to the state by Dec. 31, 2015. While the idea of poo-derived power may sound unconventional, Maryland isn’t the only state that’s giving it a second look. Through a pilot case study conducted by its Cow Power program, the state of Vermont produced 12 million kilowatt hours of electricity per year by... Continue Reading
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CooKit solar panel cooker
Panel solar cookers are the first solar cookers that are truly affordable to the world’s neediest. In 1994, a volunteer group of engineers and solar cooks associated with Solar Cookers International developed and produced the CooKit, based on a design by French scientist Roger Bernard. Elegant and deceptively simple looking, it is an affordable, effective and convenient solar cooker. With a few hours of sunshine, the CooKitmakes tasty meals for 5-6 people at gentle temperatures, cooking food and preserving nutrients without burning or drying out. Larger families use two or more cookers. The CooKit is made of cardboard and foil... Continue Reading
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Margaret Atwood’s New Book is Made of Straw Paper
Margaret Atwood, writer and Canada’s National Treasure, is issuing a limited edition of her latest book on straw paper. The paper is made solely of straw leftover after the grain harvest. Her new book, In Other Worlds: SF and the Human Imagination, will be the first in North America to be printed on this energy saving paper. The book, In Other Worlds: SF and the Human Imagination, is the story of her relationship with science fiction and brings together three unpublished lectures on this theme. It will be printed on “Second Harvest” paper. This is paper made from the leftover... Continue Reading
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Good News Reuse – Reusable Pizza Box
Good News Reuse™ has created the first ever reusable pizza box made from sustainable materials. We call it the Pi Pan. Our goal is to replace the 3 billion cardboard pizza boxes used each year with the Pi Pan. It’s a lofty goal so we need to get started now. FAQs: What is the Pi Pan made of? The Pi Pan is made of thin commercial food grade stainless steel, as thin as a reusable water bottle. It is BPA-free and does not contain other unhealthy chemicals. How long does a Pi Pan last? Stainless steel lasts forever but we... Continue Reading
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Do Lectures 2011 – The People’s Take Over
Yesterday for our third post in the Do Lectures 2011 series we encouraged you to Start Where You Live. You never know quite how far you will travel. In the case of Welsh organic salt company Halen Môn their unique local product ended up at the White House in Obama’s favourite chocolates. Now that we’ve made a start and we’ve got some momentum let’s look at where change can take us with The People’s Take Over. Power to the People We heard yesterday that Michael Kelly’s dissatisfaction with his supermarket stocking Chinese garlic lead to him starting the Grow It... Continue Reading
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