The UK Government has just launched their Green Deal earlier this month. It’s the UK’s largest attempt to retro fit homes with insulation and Green technologies. The Governments aim is to cut carbon output by 80% of 1990 levels by 2050, it’s a big ask and can’t be achieved by policy alone. The Governments aim is to get 14 million homes upgraded through the initiative.
How are they going to achieve this? Well there is one big incentive to kick things off: no upfront costs to the home or business owner. This will hopefully get people motivated, because apathy is rampant when it comes to Green Technologies. If I said to you that you could save £80/$100 per year by insulating your loft properly you’d probably say yes—but that means clearing out my loft, and that’s a pain!
With constant changes in lifestyle and behavior, there needs to be a motivation or incentive to drive the project forward. Luckily we have created international Gas and Oil markets that keep driving the cost of domestic gas and oil higher and higher; swaying the nay saiers is therefore becoming easier. Everyone understands the simple concept of saving money and finding cheaper alternatives. ... read more
Are business leaders finally discovering that climate change hurts everyone’s bottom line? In the wake of Hurricane Sandy, NYC mayor Michael Bloomberg endorsed Obama over Romney because Obama took concrete steps against carbon pollution, and at the same time he slapped Romney for denying climate change.(1) This was a major departure for any one-percenter, as Bloomberg clearly is, since that group is allergic to talking about climate change. As climate scientists offer more detailed predictions about our overheated future, one fact has become clear: climate change is going to cost everyone a lot of money. The worse it gets the more it will cost. This has been known for a decade, and new businesses are thriving in the areas of alternative energy, conservation, etc., but corporate leaders have remained eerily silent on the reality of climate change, apart from spin and greenwashing.... read more
A little background: On August 2, 2012, Representative Bob Filner and 10 cosponsors introduced the Clean Energy Victory Bonds Act of 2012, H.R. 6275 in the House of Representatives. The bill is officially entitled “To promote the domestic development and deployment of clean energy technologies required for the 21st century” and will allow Americans to invest in Treasury Bonds for as low as $25 each. The bonds will fund clean energy programs that support wind, solar, energy efficiency, and electric vehicles in the US.... read more
Between the glitz and the glamour, the awards shows and parties, there's no denying that Hollywood is a land of excess and material. Stars are constantly touted for their ever-changing wardrobes and trend-setting ways, but has anyone ever stopped to think about the environmental impact all of that has on our planet?
Thankfully, since 1989, the Environmental Media Association—a non-profit organization devoted to using the power and profile of the entertainment industry to spread ecological, sustainable awareness throughout the world—has and therefore established the EMA Green Seal Award. A program that honors and recognizes notable environmental efforts in the world of production, the award seeks to highlight those making significant changes throughout the industry while simultaneously inspiring others to do the same.... read more
All this apocalyptic weather and talk of climate doom (1) gets me antsy to do something political, so last week I went to the annual Citizens Climate Lobby (CCL)2 conference. Along with 150 other climate activists from across the country I sat through two days of briefings and seminars and powerpoints in a nondescript conference center outside Washington DC, followed by a day of lobbying on The Hill. There was the usual conference-y mingling, banter, and goofing off, and I had a blast. Each of us was scheduled for six meetings with legislators about climate change and the “Save Our Climate Act” (H.R. 3242)3, four of us in each meeting. Early Tuesday morning we all mobbed onto the Metro which whisked us over to Capitol Hill.
Being from Massachusetts, I met mostly with blue-state pols. The meetings were convivial and the same message repeatedly emerged: climate legislation has no chance of passing if Republicans maintain a House majority after the 2012 elections. You know the story; right-wing Republicans use their majority to block any progressive legislation (especially climate bills) and if nothing gets accomplished, that’s okay with them. Just to be clear: I’m distinguishing the Right from Conservatives, who sometimes cooperate with others to solve the country’s problems.... read more
Join Keen For Green and environmental-minded people around the globe today, June 18th 2012. Let our world leaders know that Fossil Fuel subsidies must end now. Tweet and Facebook #endfossilfuelsubsidies.... read more
Contributed by John Lehnert, Presidio Graduate School MBA graduate, 2011.
Every year, students from Presidio Graduate School's International Club venture abroad to put their sustainability training into action. Some students will pursue careers in international development. One group recently went to Thailand, with help from a Presidio student who is Thai himself. Their journey -- installing solar panels, learning about renewable energy, and teaching others about design thinking -- is described below.
January 2012: On a sunny day in western Thailand, our Presidio Graduate School group joined dozens of schoolchildren on a bare field for a game of soccer. We shared high fives after each goal—a fun conclusion to a day during which we installed a solar panel at a school near the Burmese border.
After 20 hours of flying, our group of 14 (mostly students, with a few alumni and significant others) met in Bangkok and headed north in two vans. Crossing the flat central expanse of rice fields, we reached our first stop, Chiang Mai. We led a workshop for university students and faculty on design thinking: a collaborative process in which teams define a problem, brainstorm solutions, select the best ones and then have fun making prototypes.... read more
Have you read the American Lung Association's State of the Air 2012 report? If not, I urge you to check it out immediately. Visit the website and see what the grade is for where you live. You may be surprised.
The good news? Things are getting better. Air quality is improving.
As I plumped myself down to watch Greenfire Productions’ new documentary, Ocean Frontiers, I was ready for a fight. Not to actually be in a fight, mind you, I just wanted to watch one from the comfort of the plush seats at the New England Aquarium’s IMAX theater. Ocean Frontiers starts with a familiar setup; ecosystems stretched to breaking, rickety regulations that are hardly adequate, and everyone wanting a bigger piece of the pie, or at least to keep what they have. I anticipated such well-worn narratives as right vs wrong, perceptive vs blind, spiritual vs benighted -- the usual. But that’s not what I got. Ocean Frontiers shows four coastal communities who sidestepped the gridlock of their eco-struggles and found solutions that worked for everyone, and for the ocean. (Conflict of interest alert: I’m on Greenfire’s board.) ... read more
Trudee Lunden is a writer, marketer, and songwriter with a passion for the environment. Not only does Trudee live a green lifestyle, but she integrates her love for the planet in her songwriting. Trudee has co-written 2 songs about electric cars: Wired and Electricity.... read more