Researchers test seawater air conditioning as a renewable cooling alternative

October 20, 2020 by  
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A new study led by the International Institute of Applied System Analysis (IIASA) indicates that using seawater air conditioning is a greener alternative to conventional AC and could reduce cooling costs significantly. The study, which was published in the journal Energy Efficiency , was conducted to determine the pros and cons of seawater air conditioning (SWAC). The researchers behind the study say that there is a need to find renewable air conditioning alternatives to conventional options as global warming worsens . The study looks at the possibility of pumping deep seawater from 700-1,200 meters deep at the temperature of 3° to 5° Celsius to the coast, where it exchanges heat within a cooling system. The study now shows that just one cubic meter of seawater could provide cooling energy equivalent to that provided by 21 wind turbines. To better understand the pros and cons of SWAC systems, the researchers developed a computational model used to estimate the cost of cooling around the world. The model was also used in determining the possibility of using this approach in all parts of the world. Related: Cool ways to skip the air conditioning and still keep your home chill The results showed that while it is possible to use SWAC systems in many parts of the world, they would require heavy initial investments. But in comparison to conventional air conditioning, the research determined that SWAC would offer lower operational costs. Further, the study found that in some coastal cities and islands, the cooling costs would drop as much as 77% of the normal cooling costs via conventional AC. According to the study, the primary consumers of this technology would be airports, hotels and resorts among other establishments that consume high quantities of power. According to Julian Hunt, lead author of the study, SWAC systems have the potential of increasing efficiency over time. “We call this approach ‘High-Velocity Seawater Air-conditioning’,” Hunt explained. “This design configuration allows such projects to be built with an initial cooling load and expand the cooling load modularly through smaller additional capital costs.” While the study has established many positives of using seawater air conditioning, there are challenges that were identified. The systems would need to be handled and monitored carefully to preserve marine life and not disrupt the ecosystems. Hunt said, “While it does have its challenges, seawater air-conditioning is an innovative and sustainable technology that has great potential for expanding into a benchmark system for cooling in tropical locations close to the deep sea and will help fulfill our cooling needs in a warming world.” + IIASA Image via Dean Moriarty

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Researchers test seawater air conditioning as a renewable cooling alternative

International Young Eco-Heroes Inspire a Brighter Future

October 19, 2020 by  
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Young people around the world are powerful players in protecting … The post International Young Eco-Heroes Inspire a Brighter Future appeared first on Earth 911.

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International Young Eco-Heroes Inspire a Brighter Future

Earth911 Podcast: Rent-a-Romper Founder Lauren Gregor on Reducing Baby Clothing Waste

October 19, 2020 by  
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The fashion industry is a profligate source of pollution, even … The post Earth911 Podcast: Rent-a-Romper Founder Lauren Gregor on Reducing Baby Clothing Waste appeared first on Earth 911.

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Earth911 Podcast: Rent-a-Romper Founder Lauren Gregor on Reducing Baby Clothing Waste

Partnership is key for InterContinental Hotels Group’s circularity goals

September 18, 2020 by  
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Partnership is key for InterContinental Hotels Group’s circularity goals InterContinental Hotels Group, which has tens of thousands of properties currently in operation or development, has a large footprint. But did you know that many of its properties are run by third parties? That makes working toward sustainability goals challenging, according to Catherine Dolton, vice president of global corporate responsibility at the company. “It’s all about influencing those third parties to make changes,” she said. Still, it’s striving toward big goals. Earlier in 2020, the hotels group set science-based targets to address its water and waste impacts, as well as how it works with the communities in which is operates. And it’s started working in partnership with other companies to try to reach its circular economy goals. “We do have the power to make a difference,” Dolton said. “It’s not just about collaboration outside the industry. We also work with out peers through the International Tourism Partnership.” Shana Rappaport, vice president and executive director of VERGE at GreenBiz Group, interviewed Catherine Dolton, vice president of global corporate responsibility at InterContinental Hotels Group, during Circularity 20, which took place August 25-27, 2020. View archived videos from the conference here . Deonna Anderson Fri, 09/18/2020 – 16:34 Featured Off

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Partnership is key for InterContinental Hotels Group’s circularity goals

UPS is aiming to be better, not bigger

September 18, 2020 by  
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UPS is aiming to be better, not bigger When Carol Tomé joined UPS as the company’s CEO on June 1, 2020, she put a stake in the ground around social justice and equity. “We announced actions to address the racial and social justice challenges facing communities here in the U.S. and around the globe,” said Suzanne Lindsay Walker, chief sustainability officer at UPS, noting an internal equity task force and legislative advocacy. “It’s a huge focus area for us and one that I’m excited to continue and see where we go.” Related to the circular economy, Walker said UPS has an important role to play in enabling it through its own operations and its customers’ circular strategies.  John Davies, vice president and senior analyst at GreenBiz, interviewed Suzanne Lindsay Walker, chief sustainability officer at UPS, during Circularity 20, which took place August 25-27, 2020. View archived videos from the conference here . Deonna Anderson Fri, 09/18/2020 – 15:58 Featured Off

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UPS is aiming to be better, not bigger

Don’t be square: How to tell a successful, circular story that sticks

September 15, 2020 by  
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Don’t be square: How to tell a successful, circular story that sticks How can companies effectively communicate circular initiatives without confusing or alienating customers and stakeholders? The circular economy is becoming a centerpiece of many corporate sustainability strategies. Yet companies often struggle to translate this into stories that inform and engage employees, customers, investors and other stakeholders. This poses a problem because if we hope to unlock the circular economy’s full potential, we’ll need to make sure that it’s understood and embraced by all — and not just sustainability wonks. In this session, panelists explore how companies are learning to leverage the power of narrative to educate and inspire stakeholders on their circular ambitions, products and service offerings. Speakers: Mike Hower, Managing Director, Sustainability & Social Impact, thinkPARALLAX Devin Giles, Sustainability Project Leader, International Paper Tamay Kiper, Project Director, McDonough Innovation  Holly Secon Tue, 09/15/2020 – 10:36 Featured Off

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Don’t be square: How to tell a successful, circular story that sticks

International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

September 15, 2020 by  
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People think of the ozone layer as a past-tense environmental … The post International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer appeared first on Earth 911.

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International Day for the Preservation of the Ozone Layer

International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies

September 7, 2020 by  
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The biggest problem with fossil fuels is their contribution to … The post International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies appeared first on Earth 911.

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International Day of Clean Air for Blue Skies

International Day Against Nuclear Tests

August 25, 2020 by  
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Most people are opposed to the use of nuclear weapons, … The post International Day Against Nuclear Tests appeared first on Earth 911.

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International Day Against Nuclear Tests

This is why investors want financial regulators to tackle climate risk

August 24, 2020 by  
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This is why investors want financial regulators to tackle climate risk Ravi Varghese Mon, 08/24/2020 – 01:15 To understand economic crises of the recent past, present and future, there may be no finer teacher than Michael Lewis. Many readers will be familiar with Lewis’s book “The Big Short,” which documented how excesses in global credit markets spawned a worldwide financial crisis. But a later book of his — “The Fifth Risk” — best explains why we were unprepared for the current pandemic and why we need a different approach to deal with threats such as climate change.  Lewis’s thesis is simple, but profound: Dealing with catastrophic risks is the purview of government. In particular, the U.S. government bears the unenviable burden of “the biggest portfolio of such risks ever managed by a single institution in the history of the world.” Some of these risks spring readily to mind — financial crises, hurricanes and terrorist threats, just to name a few. Others, such as a global pandemic, previously might have seemed too far-fetched to be worthy of serious consideration. Lewis warns that these risks are “like bombs with very long fuses that … might or might not explode” in the distant future. Climate change falls squarely in this category. It is far easier to mobilize resources and public support to combat a spreading virus than to make investments and formulate policy which might only reap rewards decades from now. It is even more challenging when multiple government agencies are involved, requiring the hard, thankless work of endless coordination. This was one lesson of the financial crisis: it wasn’t always easy to know which government entity had regulatory oversight of a complex cast of financial actors and a dizzying array of exotic instruments. Similarly, a threat such as climate change permeates so many elements of society and the economy that it’s hard to know who should do what. Thankfully, a timely new report from Ceres, a Boston-based sustainability organization, has eliminated some of that hard work. ” Addressing Climate as a Systemic Risk ,” produced by the Ceres Accelerator for Sustainable Capital Markets, exhorts U.S. financial regulators to take proactive steps to understand climate change. Appropriate oversight by financial regulators involves the collection of data, which can assist federal, state and municipal authorities in planning for a changing climate. The report offers 50 specific recommendations to seven federal financial regulatory agencies, as well as state and federal insurance regulators. Broadly speaking, Ceres calls for regulators to assess climate impact on financial market stability, increase oversight where climate change creates risk, and foster greater disclosure from companies and financial intermediaries.  Investors should cheer these ambitions. That’s why we joined more than 70 other signatories , including investment firms with more than $1 trillion of assets under management, in supporting a Ceres-led letter backing this initiative. As a signatory, we believe the logic is unshakable: Prudent regulation, enacted with a long-term perspective, can ensure that capital is funneled to sectors aligned with a future where global temperature rise is limited to 2 degrees Celsius. Investors are already concerned about stranded asset risk in large swathes of the economy, such as energy, utilities, transportation and infrastructure. To reduce this risk, regulators in the U.S. can benefit from joining their international peers in forward-thinking organizations such as the Network for Greening of the Financial System (NGFS).  Furthermore, appropriate oversight by financial regulators involves the collection of data, which can assist federal, state and municipal authorities in planning for a changing climate. Questions abound over the efficacy of stimulus spending in the ongoing pandemic. Long-term planning helps ensure that spending is implemented in a thoughtful manner, with maximum return wrung out of every dollar. The fiscal implications of climate change, meanwhile, are already appearing. As Ceres points out, recent research suggests private mortgage lenders are already shifting riskier mortgages to government-sponsored entities. Most investors surely will balk at the notion of privatized gains and socialized losses.  In “The Fifth Risk,” Lewis is unstintingly effusive about the dedication and caliber of government employees he encountered. But even if regulators were to adopt all of the Ceres recommendations, they would not make headlines for their actions. That, perhaps, makes their work all the more important. As Lewis reminds us, “it’s the places in our government where the cameras never roll that you have to worry about most.” Armed with this new report from Ceres, financial regulators can help investors worry a little bit less.  Pull Quote Appropriate oversight by financial regulators involves the collection of data, which can assist federal, state and municipal authorities in planning for a changing climate. Topics Finance & Investing GreenFin ESG Featured in featured block (1 article with image touted on the front page or elsewhere) Off Duration 0 Sponsored Article Off

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