This startup is helping universities and companies embrace circular asset management

January 9, 2020 by  
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It aims to scale the sharing of equipment and supplies across industries — and make the “multi-usiverse” happen.

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This startup is helping universities and companies embrace circular asset management

This startup is helping universities and companies embrace circular asset management

January 9, 2020 by  
Filed under Business, Green

It aims to scale the sharing of equipment and supplies across industries — and make the “multi-usiverse” happen.

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This startup is helping universities and companies embrace circular asset management

The innovative design of one of the world’s largest net-zero buildings

January 9, 2020 by  
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A peek inside the ‘Unisphere.’

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The innovative design of one of the world’s largest net-zero buildings

The innovative design of one of the world’s largest net-zero buildings

January 9, 2020 by  
Filed under Business, Green

A peek inside the ‘Unisphere.’

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The innovative design of one of the world’s largest net-zero buildings

Climate action infiltrates CES clamor, but electronics industry must do more

January 9, 2020 by  
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Lots of big tech companies talk about emissions reductions programs, but the truth is the industry as a whole still isn’t doing that much.

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Climate action infiltrates CES clamor, but electronics industry must do more

8 attainable sustainability resolutions for 2020

January 1, 2020 by  
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Setting goals is a ubiquitous part of ushering in each new year. With a renewed vigor for healthy living, embrace the opportunity to incorporate more eco-friendly habits into your routine. This task can be achieved in a variety of ways, from changing your diet to reducing waste . Wherever you are on your sustainable living journey, we’ve got some ideas for how to lower your carbon footprint and enhance your sense of commitment to the planet. Commit to less driving Reducing miles equals reducing carbon emissions . To minimize personal auto usage, use public transportation for your daily commute. If subways and buses don’t take you where you need to go, set up a carpool to eliminate multiple cars going to the same location. Over the course of a year, replacing your 10-mile drive to work or school at least one day each week will greatly reduce emissions. If possible, skip the car altogether by walking or using a bike. Alternately, look into electric cars if you’re in the market for a new vehicle. Even if you must rely on your car daily, you can still reduce miles by combining errands when you head to town, organizing a carpool for kid drop-offs and pickups, sending the kids to school on the bus, eating your lunch in the office instead of driving to a restaurant and walking or biking to places in your neighborhood instead of jumping in the car. Related: People for Bikes is making cycling safer with Ride Spot Start a garden There’s nothing better than having fresh, organic vegetables at your disposal and no better way to achieve that goal than by starting a garden. If you have the space, plan for the seasons with cool weather leafy veggies and carrots in the spring, a salsa garden in the summer and squash in the fall. In a small space, prepare a container garden on your patio with cherry tomatoes, herbs and peas. If you don’t have space for your own garden, bring together like-minded people and start a community garden. As the saying goes, “Many hands make light work,” so having help with planting, maintaining and harvesting plants benefits everyone. If outdoor space isn’t an option, consider setting up a hydroponics system to grow indoors instead. Join an environmentally focused group Finding ways to help the environment can feel somewhat overwhelming, but when you join a group of like-minded people sharing in a common goal, you can achieve great things. Whether your passion is cleaning up the oceans or planting trees , find a local group that supports your cause. If there isn’t one in your area, set a goal to start one. Budget for the environment We are surrounded by prompts to constantly buy more stuff. Every billboard, bus and storefront is filled with enticing marketing meant to convince you that you need whatever they offer. But each product contributes to emissions from sourcing materials, manufacturing, transporting, maintaining warehouse and retail space and disposing of post-consumer waste. Of course, it’s important to make conscientious decisions about avoiding plastic and plastic foam, buying in bulk when possible and investing in durable products that will last many years rather than disposables, but avoiding the purchase in the first place is the best thing you can do for the planet. Boil purchases down to the essentials. Give experiences rather than physical gifts. Only buy in quantities you’re likely to use. Focus on multipurpose items that can suit alternate needs. Really evaluate whether you will use an item long-term. Set a goal to reduce unnecessary purchases, and do your budget a favor at the same time. Hint: Sharing or renting equipment, tools and supplies is another easy way to save money and reduce environmental impact. Take a class There are endless ways to lower your carbon footprint , so target a topic of interest and learn more about it. Some examples include beekeeping, preserving food, woodworking, sewing, gardening or learning how to build solar and wind technology. Become more self-sufficient by obtaining skills in homesteading, identifying edible plants or using plants in alternative ways. Reduce waste Becoming conscious of your waste is a huge step toward reducing it. Take a look at your typical waste. Do you fill a 64-gallon street container each week? If so, see if you can reduce that to a 32-gallon instead. If you don’t already, start recycling . Capabilities of local recycling centers vary widely across the nation, so educate yourself on the regional process. Most facilities accept glass, tin cans, large plastic containers and paper — at a minimum. Also, always return your bottles and aluminum cans for recycling or redemption. Related: Recycling Identifying Device takes the guesswork out of figuring out what is recyclable To repeat an earlier sentiment, the best way to reduce garbage is to keep it from entering the house in the first place. Look at the packaging when you make a purchase, and support companies that ship in recyclable or biodegradable containers. Set a tangible goal for yourself to reduce your waste production by half. Maybe next year, you can halve it again. Write a letter Believe it or not, companies want to know how you feel about their products. When you notice something you like, such as a commitment to carbon offsetting or sustainable material sourcing, let them know with your buying power and your word. Conversely, let businesses know when they miss the mark. Write a letter to the CEO or owner, and let them know you would be a loyal customer if they worked toward corporate responsibility. Near and far, make companies aware of changes they can make to be more sustainable. Offer suggestions to local restaurants to replace plastic straws or single-use plastic tablecloths. Ask if to-go containers are cardboard, and refuse them if an establishment only provides plastic foam. At a city, state or federal level, get your representative involved. Drop them a note each month of the year to let them know what is important to you. Educate them about issues they may not be aware of. Ask for representation around topics like reducing petroleum reliance, protecting nature and supporting organic farming. Make your voice heard by speaking out for what you believe. Clean your plate Feeding the planet’s population puts a burden on our limited resources, but there are many things you can do to lessen your individual impact. Start by buying as local as possible. Source food from the farmer’s market seasonally, and purchase directly from farms in your town. Buying organic produce supports farmers who make the extra effort to keep pesticides and other chemicals out of our waterways. You don’t want to eat chemical-laden food, anyway. Cut back on animal products, because animal farming is a major producer of methane. Skip meat a few days a week or altogether. Cut out dairy products where you can, too. Don’t buy more food than you need , and use up leftovers rather than throwing them out. Do most of your cooking at home. A commitment to home-cooked meals is better for your health, your budget and the planet. Setting resolutions for the new year is a healthy way to guide yourself toward your sustainability goals, which is a win for you and for Earth. Happy New Year! Images via Shutterstock

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8 attainable sustainability resolutions for 2020

Robin Chase, transportation entrepreneur, on opportunities fighting climate change through mobility

November 6, 2018 by  
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Robin Chase believes that “transportation is the center of our universe.”Founder and former CEO of ZipCar, one of the pioneering companies of the sharing economy, as well as tech startup Veniam (and VERGE Vanguard winner), Chase knows that there are major opportunities to cut carbon and enact systems changes through the transportation sector.”It’s a moment — can we capture the momentum and anxiety and deliver cities that are sustainable and livable?” she asked.

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Robin Chase, transportation entrepreneur, on opportunities fighting climate change through mobility

5 Ways To Reduce Waste at Your Child’s Next Birthday Party

September 20, 2018 by  
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If, like me, you have the exquisite joy of sharing … The post 5 Ways To Reduce Waste at Your Child’s Next Birthday Party appeared first on Earth911.com.

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5 Ways To Reduce Waste at Your Child’s Next Birthday Party

Paris opens first section of a 28-mile bicycle superhighway

July 6, 2016 by  
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Paris just inaugurated its very first all-bike superhighway . So far, the thoroughfare consists of a half-mile stretch of pavement that runs along the Bassin de l’Arsenal, but by 2020 it will be just one small part of a 28-mile bicycle highway network, called the Réseau express vélo (“REVe”) , planned across the city. Rather than simply placing bike lanes on already-busy streets, the city has opted to build dedicated bike paths free of motorized vehicles — a move that’s certainly sure to encourage those too timid to travel in urban traffic. As more people bike to work each day, the hope is that the city’s notorious air pollution will be lessened. In 2015, Paris officials voted to set aside €150 million ($164.5 million) to expand and improve the city’s biking infrastructure , including REVe. The city created new traffic regulations that are more friendly to cyclists, such as allowing them to turn at some intersections without waiting for green lights. The city also plans to build new bike stands, two-way bike lanes on one-way streets, and smart traffic lights that give priority to cyclists. When you look at the numbers, it’s not surprising that city officials sought to make biking more attractive to residents. A 2014 study showed that bikes made up only 5% of the city’s daily traffic, accounting for 225,000 trips. While that may seem like a high number, it barely registers compared to the 15.5 million daily car trips made within the city. These numbers are positively dismal when compared to other European cities like Copenhagen (where cyclists account for 55% of traffic) or Amsterdam (a close second at 43%). Related: France is Paying Commuters to Bike to Work! There is one factor that helps account for the disparity here: cyclists in Paris claim they simply don’t feel safe competing with motorized vehicles on the road. While most roads in the city have bike lanes, cyclists report being pushed out of them by other vehicles using them as lanes. The new bike highways solve this problem by eliminating shared bike lanes altogether — and the city hopes that cyclists will creep up to 15% of daily traffic by 2020. Via CityLab Images via Wikimedia Commons and The Mayor of Paris

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Paris opens first section of a 28-mile bicycle superhighway

NASA’s giant helium research balloon set new world record after 46 days in flight

July 6, 2016 by  
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Helium balloons are much more than notorious party accessories, as evidenced by this piece of news:  NASA is celebrating a new flight record for its Super Pressure Balloon (SPB) after the helium-filled research balloon touched down safely at the end of a 46-day test flight. The balloon, which had been on one previous test flight, had been launched on May 16 from New Zealand and spent a total of 46 days, 20 hours, and 19 minutes aloft before landing on Saturday, July 2 in Peru. The achievement secured the new world record for a mid-latitude flight of a large scientific research balloon. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=iKGaDCA9yyc NASA’s Balloon Program Office —yes, you read that correctly—is thrilled with the success of the SPB’s second test flight. Unlike most helium balloons at birthday parties, the SPB didn’t simply drift back down to Earth on its own, though. NASA’s Columbia Scientific Balloon Facility in Palestine, Texas sent flight termination commands at 3:14 p.m. EDT, July 2, ordering the 18.8-million-cubic-foot balloon to separate from its payload and deflate rapidly. The payload then floated safely to the ground in a mountainous area about 20 miles north of Camana, Peru. Official in Peru agreed to help prior to the landing, and coordinated the recovery of the payload and balloon, which are now in progress. Related: Bloon: Zero2Infinity Proposes Eco Friendly Near-Space Travel With a Helium Filled Balloon The SPB test flight marked a series of “first ever” events in addition to its flight duration record. This flight was the first time SPD carried a science payload—the Compton Spectrometer and Imager (COSI)—during a mid-latitude flight. The balloon is also the first to complete a mid-latitude circumnavigation, doing so in just 14 days, 13 hours, and 42 minutes. “We’re extremely pleased with the flight time we achieved with this mission, far and away the longest mid-latitude flight of a NASA heavy-lift balloon to date,” said Debbie Fairbrother, NASA’s Balloon Program Office chief. “We’ll continue to strive for even longer duration flight, 100 days or more, and what we learn from this year’s mission will help take us there.” Via NASA Images via NASA  

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NASA’s giant helium research balloon set new world record after 46 days in flight

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