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Archive for the 'Sustainable Business' Category

IS BIG BUSINESS BUYING OUT THE ENVIRONMENTAL MOVEMENT?

Posted in Eco -Chic, Miscellaneous, News Brief, Sustainable Business on June 5th, 2007

HAVE ENVIROS BEEN DUPED INTO ENDORSING WHAT MAY BE LITTLE MORE THAN A NEW WAVE OF CORPORATE GREENWASHING?

enviroglobe.jpgIn the business world these days, it appears that just about everything is for sale. Multi-billion-dollar deals are commonplace, and even venerable institutions such as the Wall Street Journal find themselves put into play. Yet companies are not the only things being acquired. This may turn out to be the year that big business bought a substantial part of the environmental movement.

That’s one way of interpreting the remarkable level of cooperation that is emerging between some prominent environmental groups and some of the world’s largest corporations. What was once an arena of fierce antagonism has become a veritable love fest as companies profess to be going green and get lavishly honored for doing so. Earlier this year, for instance, the World Resources Institute gave one of its “Courage to Lead” awards to the chief executive of General Electric.

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SOURCE: Alternet

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ALL NYC TAXI CABS TO BE HYBRIDS BY 2012

Posted in Alternative Fuel Vehicles, Conscious Actions, Global Warming, Health Watch, Sustainable Business on May 23rd, 2007

CITY’S GOAL IS TO REDUCE GREENHOUSE GAS EMISSIONS BY 30 PERCENT BY 2030.

hytaxi.jpg Back in early 2005, San Francisco chose the Escape Hybrid as a replacement vehicle for some ailing older cabs. Shortly thereafter, New York did the same and purchased a small fleet of Escape Hybrids

At this point in time, New York has 288 Escape Hybrids on the taxi fleet and the results have been very impressive. The initial fleet consisted of 18 Escapes and the estimated fuel savings hover around $250,000. The extra 270 should create an impressively large mountain of savings.

Here are a few statistics concerning the Escape Hybrid as a Taxi:

Through 100,000 miles (160,000 km), an Escape Hybrid taxi will save roughly 1,666 gallons of gas or 32,000 lbs. of carbon emissions compared with a conventional cab.

To date, New York City’s Hybrid Cabs have accumulated over 175,000 miles with no major mechanical problems, proving that the Escape Hybrid is reliable and durable.

Escape Hybrid taxi drivers report they expect to save over $6,000 on gas per year.
-LIB

Source: auto123.com

The spacious but gas-guzzling Ford Crown Victoria, long the emblematic vehicle of the city’s yellow cab fleet, would be replaced by cleaner, more fuel-efficient hybrid vehicles under a five-year plan proposed by Mayor Michael R. Bloomberg yesterday.

The move, which requires approval by the city’s Taxi and Limousine Commission, is part of the mayor’s ambitious environmental agenda for the city, PlaNYC, which calls for reducing greenhouse gas emissions by 30 percent by 2030.

“There’s an awful lot of taxicabs on the streets of New York City obviously, so it makes a real big difference,” Mayor Bloomberg said on NBC’s “Today” show yesterday. “These cars just sit there in traffic sometimes, belching fumes. This does a lot less; it’s a lot better for all of us.”

Replacing the city’s 13,000 yellow cabs, more than 90 percent of which are Crown Victorias, with hybrid vehicles would have the same impact on air quality as removing 32,000 privately owned vehicles from the road, the mayor said. Hybrids, which run on a combination of gasoline and electricity, emit less exhaust and are far more fuel-efficient; a hybrid Ford Escape, for instance, is rated at 34 miles per gallon in city driving.

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SILICON VALLEY MOVES TO BECOME CLEAN AND GREEN

Posted in Alternative Energy, Clean Energy, Miscellaneous, Sustainable Business on May 19th, 2007

ENGINEERS AIM TO TRANSFORM SOLAR, FUEL-CELL, AND BIOFUEL PROJECTS INTO VIABLE INDUSTRIES

solarmodul.JPG Microchips? Been there. Software? Done that. Dotcoms? Soooo 20th century. Now, Silicon Valley is looking to become clean and green – and it could turn into the region’s next big high-tech push.

Its new focus: so-called “clean technology” – technology that uses natural resources more efficiently or not at all, thereby reducing the environmental impact of products and cutting costs.

Most of Silicon Valley’s current emphasis is on clean energy. Entrepreneurs here are aiming to transform solar, fuel-cell, and biofuel projects into viable industries with huge potential. Already, the market amounts to $55 billion – more than the entire Internet advertising market dominated by the high-tech region’s current darling, Google. In 10 years, the clean-energy market by one estimate could quadruple. In the past year, for the first time, more silicon in the US has gone toward making solar panels than computer chips. More important, venture capitalists are pouring money into clean technology, thanks to a confluence of events.

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FLORIDA TO BUILD GREEN TOWN: ERNEST CALLENBACH TAKE NOTE

Posted in Alternative Energy, Conscious Actions, Cool Products, Eco -Chic, Miscellaneous, Sustainable Business, Sustainable Living on May 19th, 2007

ZERO-CARBON FOOTPRINT AND FRESH PRODUCE AMONG FUTURISTIC TOWN’S MANY ATTRACTIONS

skyx.jpg THE FUTURE SITE OF SKY, Fla. (AP) — Homes here could be heated or cooled using the Earth’s natural underground temperature. Appliances would be runby solar-powered batteries. Houses would be oriented to avoid the summer sun.

And everyone could grow some of their own food in the garden each house will have or in community orchards. If all goes as planned, the 600 families in this proposed Florida Panhandle town will lessen the carbon they spew into the atmosphere by walking just about everywhere they go, except maybe work or school.

“You’ve got almost a zero-carbon footprint just by living here,” said Bruce White, one of the developers of the town, who envisions creating the climate steward’s dream community. “Just by being here you will be an environmentalist.”

Part of a growing $12 billion a year sustainable building industry, Sky is meant to be the green town of the future the way Americans will live when they realize they use too much energy, its developers say. They hope it will serve as an experiment into what can be done to accomplish that goal, and maybe be a model for other communities.

Right now, it’s mostly pine trees, grassy meadow, creeks and scattered gladiolus flowers which were grown commercially on the property by the previous owner.

It may be in one of the last places you’d expect to find a mecca of green building, along a backroad in remote and rural Calhoun County. It’s a half hour from the nearest interstate, an hour from the coast and an hour from the nearest good-sized city, Tallahassee.

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LESS IS NOW ENOUGH WHEN IT COMES TO PACKAGING

Posted in Conscious Actions, Global Warming, Sustainable Business on May 13th, 2007

COMPANIES STRIVE TO ADDRESS GROWING ENVIRONMENTAL CONCERNS. AND SAVE MONEY WHILE DOING SO

packaging.jpeg Marketers usually boast about what they have added to their products. Increasingly, though, they are bragging about what they are taking out – by cutting down on packaging and its impact on the environment.

Procter & Gamble, for example, has introduced rigid tubes for Crest toothpaste that can be shipped and displayed on shelves without boxes. Aveda, a beauty products company, is expected to soon roll out a men’s care line that is packaged in bottles made of 95 percent recycled materials.

And Coca-Cola plans to cut the plastics in its Dasani water bottles by 7 percent over the next five years, just by tweaking the shape of the bottle and the cap.

“Waste of any kind is inefficiency, and inefficiency equals cost,” said Scott Vitters, Coca-Cola’s director of sustainable packaging.

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THE HIGH ENVIRONMENTAL COSTS OF BOTTLED WATER

Posted in Consciousness, Sustainable Business on May 13th, 2007

BOTTLED WATER MAY BE SCRUTINIZED USING LOWER STANDARDS THAN PLAIN TAP WATER

200px-Stilles_Mineralwasser.jpg Bottled water, the world’s fastest growing beverage, carries a heavy environmental cost, adding plastic to landfills and putting pressure on natural springs, the author of a new report said Thursday.

“Bottled water is really expensive, in terms of environmental costs and economically,” said Ling Li, who wrote the report for the Washington-based Worldwatch Institute.

While many in developed countries thirst for safety, cleanliness, taste and social cachet when they buy bottled water, more than 1 billion of the world’s poorest lack access to clean drinking water, bottled or not.

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DAVID V. GOLIATHAS ORGANIC FARMER SUES FARMSERVICES COMPANY OVER PESTICIDE USE

Posted in Health Watch, Sustainable Business on May 11th, 2007

CHEMICALS SPREAD TO ORGANIC FARM DESTROYING CROP

240px-Barley.jpg In a case that could reverberate through the county, a judge has ordered a farming service company to temporarily stop spraying pesticides that an organic farmer says are moving with the fog onto his field and destroying his crop.

Organic Jacobs Farms is suing Western Farm Services, a Fresno company that provides and applies pesticides for conventional farmers. The suit, filed by Larry Jacobs, seeks to stop the spraying of pesticides that could travel to his field and an unspecified amount of money to cover the crops he says he lost. The farmer who owns the conventional field is not named in the suit.

The pesticides apparently were applied correctly and did not blow onto the organic field, which would be illegal. Instead, all involved think they were picked up by fog, which can turn pesticides into liquid and carry them off days after they were sprayed.

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ECO-FASHION STEPS UP

Posted in Conscious Actions, Cool Products, Eco -Chic, Sustainable Business, Sustainable Fashion on May 4th, 2007

MAJOR FASHION LABELS PRODUCING CLOTHES USING FABRICS MADE FROM SUSTAINABLE PLANTS LIKE BAMBOO AND CORN

ecofashion.jpg It used to be that eco-conscious clothing meant hemp t-shirts and organic cotton yoga pants – fashion hadn’t yet entered the equation.

Now, not only are there smaller niche designers to choose from like Linda Loudermilk and Elisa Jimenez, who have long used eco-friendly fabrics and production methods, but major fashion labels like Stella McCartney, Versace and Diesel are also producing clothes with Mother Earth in mind, using fabrics made from sustainable plants like bamboo and corn.

“It doesn’t have to be an aesthetic sacrifice just because it’s eco-friendly,” said Jimenez at an Ingeo NatureWorks “Earth Month” event in New York on April 24. Ingeo is a synthetic fabric whose selling point is that it is made from a 100 percent renewable resource, corn, which Jimenez has been using in her collections for the past three years.

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RICH BITCH TURBINES RUIN VIEW

Posted in Clean Energy, Eco -Chic, News Brief, Renewable Energy, Sustainable Business on March 30th, 2007

windturbin.jpg The rich may be moaning about wind turbines ruining their coastal views on Cape Cod, but in Delaware, citizens are ardently battling politicians — and the coal industry — to build the nation’s largest offshore wind park.

Peter Mandelstam says he can power 130,000 Delaware homes without adding to the greenhouse gas emissions dangerously heating our planet. His proposed 600-megawatt offshore wind park — the biggest such project yet unveiled in the United States — could supply that power over 20 years cheaper than coal or gas, he vows.

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COMMENTARY: ADVERTISERS WITH A CONSCIENCE

Posted in Conscious Media, Miscellaneous, Sustainable Business on May 30th, 2006

rolling_stone_front.jpg Congratulations to BMW of North America for their new Let’s Make Room For Mother Nature ad campaign as featured in the recent Rolling Stone Magazine 1000th issue anniversary edition.

What makes this ad campaign for the popular Mini unique is that the sales pitch, simple and elegant, occupies less that one third of the full page purchased.

The balance of the space BMW of North America donated to the Nature Conservancy and for their slogan, saving the last great places on earth.

Hopefully, more advertisers will jump on to this bandwagon and allow earth friendly causes to share their high priced advertising space.

LIB

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