Earth911 Reader: The Week’s Sustainability, Recycling, Business and Science News In A Nutshell

November 7, 2020 by  
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The Earth911 team combs news and research for interesting ideas … The post Earth911 Reader: The Week’s Sustainability, Recycling, Business and Science News In A Nutshell appeared first on Earth 911.

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Earth911 Reader: The Week’s Sustainability, Recycling, Business and Science News In A Nutshell

Earth911 Inspiration: The First Rule of Sustainability

November 6, 2020 by  
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Today’s inspiration is from environmentalist, entrepreneur, and author Paul Hawken: … The post Earth911 Inspiration: The First Rule of Sustainability appeared first on Earth 911.

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Earth911 Inspiration: The First Rule of Sustainability

Plan Ahead To Reduce Food Waste

November 6, 2020 by  
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Nearly 40% of food is wasted from farm to landfill … The post Plan Ahead To Reduce Food Waste appeared first on Earth 911.

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Top gardening trends of 2020 and what to watch for 2021

November 3, 2020 by  
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Gardening is a hobby, craft and lifestyle that dates back thousands of years. Over that time, the act has taken on different forms and garnered wavering interest. What was once a mandatory way of life to provide food for the family transitioned into an option as global transportation and supermarkets took center stage in providing meals. But there’s something primal about gardening that makes it rewarding, whether that takes shape as growing your own food or simply cultivating a patio of natural decor from a combination of potted and planted foliage.  The coronavirus pandemic of 2020 has changed the way many of us spend our days. Having more time at home, voluntary or not, has encouraged bread baking, language learning, and even instrument playing. Additionally, there’s been a significant uptick in interest around all things gardening related. Google data reports a 39% increase from last year to this year on the topic — a good indicator of what’s on people’s minds. With this information, the experts at Love the Garden analyzed over 100 different garden-related hashtags on Instagram to uncover those growing in popularity and representing likely trends for 2021. Related: Make the most of your late summer garden with these tips Ten trends topped the list, with #balconygardening, #wildgarden and #insideoutside coming in for the top three. Balcony gardening offers a compact way to liven up a space or even grow food , so it makes sense as a popular topic, especially during lockdown. People used this hashtag 96,817 times, showing an international interest. Meanwhile, #wildgarden garnered 91,777 posts, indicating another popular gardening technique in the desire to not tame the wild. Unsurprisingly, #insideoutside saw 83,731 posts. After all, when it comes to plant life, a major goal is surrounding ourselves in nature. Think greenhouse living rooms on your back patio to bring this idea into perspective. Organize the couches and tables in a space with fresh air and naturally growing greenery to bring the indoors outdoors. The next most-populated hashtag was #tinygarden, with an impressive 80,752 posts. This trend illustrates how even urban locations and  tiny home  lots can use a small space to add natural appeal. In the middle of the top 10 was #raisedbedgarden (78,910), outlining ways areas with less-than-desirable soil conditions can still grow food and other greenery. In addition to what’s grown inside the raised beds, designing and building the beds is another hobby to tap into during social distancing.  The 76,576 posts related to #permaculturegarden prove that the design theory is alive and well. Permaculture gardening is a practice that takes into account all the features of the gardening system. It creates a permanent garden that respects the natural forces of wind, sun and  water . Basically, this approach centers holistic gardening and appears to be an ongoing trend to watch.  The number seven spot goes to #whitegarden with 51,750 posts. There’s something  minimalist  about an all-white space; a cleansing palette for the eyes and calming spot to relax. Color coordinating the garden space is not new and going classic with all-white blooms is still an obvious favorite.  Even smaller than the patio or remote section of the yard, using what’s available takes gardening indoors with #windowsillgarden, mentioned 48,432 times. After all, if you live in an apartment with no balcony, a sunny windowsill may be the only garden space up for offer. Especially during quarantine, finding any way to bring  green design  into your home not only sparks joy but also provides the added benefit of natural air filtration for cleaner air that is higher in oxygen and lower in carbon dioxide. Going back to color-themed gardens, #greygardens comes in ninth place with 45,124 mentions. Grey has sat at the top of the interior design color palette for the past decade so it’s not surprising gardeners want to keep the trend alive in outdoor spaces too. While most  plants  don’t fall into the grey category, furniture, stone walkways, water features and decking set a slate foundation for the surrounding landscape.  Finally, rounding out the top 10 most popular gardening related hashtags for 2020 is #cottagegardens at 37,021 posts. Again, this doesn’t seem too outlandish considering the ongoing love for cabins and tiny houses, which fit the cottage vibe. Even Victorian architecture or farmhouse structures can easily take on a cottagecore  interior design  style, so bringing those elements into the garden makes sense.  Having a vision of what piqued interest in 2020 serves as a solid indicator for what trends will continue into 2021, but the team at Love the Garden further took the guesswork out of what to expect by seeking out other popular gardening trends. The hashtags they analyzed covered the topics of Zen, urban, and container gardening and also focused on sustainability . The top 15 hashtags include #growyourown, #urbangarden, #organicgardening, #urbangardening, #vegetablegarden, #succulentgarden, #indoorgarden, #japanesegarden, #containergardening, #gardentotable, #verticalgarden, #outdoorkitchen, #countrygarden, #citygarden and #zengarden, proving that whatever type of gardening you’re considering, there’s a plant for that. + Love the Garden Images via Love the Garden and Pexels

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Top gardening trends of 2020 and what to watch for 2021

U.S. contributes 5 times more ocean plastic than previous estimates

November 3, 2020 by  
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The U.S. is contributing up to five times more plastic pollution to the oceans than previously thought, according to a follow-up study published in Science Advances . The study was a sequel to 2015 research, which had given a rough estimate of the waste contribution by the U.S. The new study has now revealed that Americans contributed between 1.1 and 2.2 million metric tons of plastic to the oceans in 2016. This figure is almost double the higher end of the estimates from 2015 and five times more than the lowest estimates in the earlier predictions. The study has revealed that Americans are using more plastic than ever before. The data included American waste exports that were not accounted for in their previous studies. About 88% of the country’s waste exports goes to countries with poor recycling infrastructure. Recent developments have shown that much of the plastic waste that is exported does not go through recycling systems and ends up in the oceans. Related: Flow of plastic waste in the ocean could triple by 2040 “When you consider how much of our plastic waste isn’t actually recyclable because it is low-value, contaminated, or difficult to process, it’s not surprising that a lot of it ends up polluting the environment,” said Kara Lavender Law, lead author and research professor of oceanography at the Sea Education Association. Data analysis is an important aspect that must be employed in the management of plastic waste . According to Tony Walker, an associate professor at the Dalhousie University School for Resource and Environmental Studies, there is a lack of data standards across municipalities. The researchers are now emphasizing the need to get accurate information when it comes to plastic pollution. As reported by The New York Times , only 9% of the country’s total waste goes into the recycling system. Unfortunately, there is no guarantee that such waste will actually be made into new items. Plastic recycling has proven to be quite expensive, making it unrealistic for plastic manufactures to use recycled plastic. + Science Advances Via The New York Times Image via Brian Yurasits

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U.S. contributes 5 times more ocean plastic than previous estimates

10 Green Apps To Help You Live More Sustainably

November 3, 2020 by  
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Most of us strive to use less energy, consume fewer … The post 10 Green Apps To Help You Live More Sustainably appeared first on Earth 911.

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10 Green Apps To Help You Live More Sustainably

Corporate sustainability leadership during a pandemic

November 2, 2020 by  
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Corporate sustainability leadership during a pandemic Tove Malmqvist Mon, 11/02/2020 – 01:00 As we continue to grapple with the COVID-19 pandemic and its devastating social and economic effects, companies are continuing their efforts to become more sustainable — and some are being recognized for their efforts. The 2020 Sustainability Leaders , a GlobeScan- SustainAbility survey of experts worldwide, reveals which companies are perceived to be leaders on sustainability during this challenging time by sustainability professionals representing business, government, NGOs and academia. Over 700 experts were surveyed online across 71 countries in May. Results show that Unilever continues to dominate as a recognized leader among the sustainability community, securing the leading position for the 10th year in a row, with Patagonia and IKEA following in the second and third spots, respectively. Data from the survey indicate that corporate sustainability leaders need to navigate an increasing sense of urgency for almost all sustainability challenges. At the same time, about half of experts fear that the impact of the current pandemic will deprioritize the sustainability agenda over the next decade. While environmental issues such as climate change, biodiversity loss, water scarcity and water pollution dominate the list of issues that experts say are the most urgent — these are all considered more urgent than they were in 2019 — the perceived urgency of social issues is also on the rise. Experts express significant increases in concern about poverty, economic inequality and discrimination, and growing attention is also given to accessibility of needs such as education, food and energy. Although the issues we are facing are becoming more urgent, most experts believe that the pandemic will have a negative impact on the sustainable development agenda over the next 10 years, potentially making the transformation to sustainable business much more challenging. The pandemic and its economic aftermath are expected to further exacerbate inequalities and poverty, emphasizing the importance of the social aspects of the sustainability agenda. However, almost a third of experts also believe that the pandemic will lead to a renewed focus on environmental issues, and some point to shifting supply chains and changes in consumer behaviors and travel as potentially positive outcomes. In this challenging context, experts in North America as well as globally continue to recognize the efforts made by Unilever to advance the sustainability agenda. Unilever has dominated perceptions of sustainability leadership among sustainability professionals for a decade, but there are some signs that the leadership landscape may be beginning to shift. At the global level, four new companies enter the list this year: Microsoft; Ørsted; L’Oréal; and Tata. North American experts’ views on which companies are leaders largely line up with the global average, although recognition of both Unilever and Patagonia is even stronger among this group. Experts based in North America also recognize additional North American-based companies as top-tier sustainability leaders, including Mars, Nike, Walmart and Maple Leaf Foods. While having sustainability as part of the core business model continues to be a major factor of recognized sustainability leadership, setting ambitious targets and committing to the United Nations Sustainable Development Goals are the top issues in the eyes of experts. As we confront a global pandemic and the economic hardship it is producing, efforts around communications and advocacy alongside health, social engagement and human rights have become increasingly important criteria as well. In order to increase resilience and their ability to withstand future systemic shocks, businesses are first and foremost expected to double down on their ESG commitments. Beyond ensuring business continuity and risk preparedness, the private sector is encouraged by experts to take far-reaching action by rethinking business models, transforming supply chains and focusing on lowering GHG emissions. Collaboration and partnerships with governments are also pointed to as urgent actions that companies should take to build resilience. The findings of this 2020 survey make it clear what the private sector must do to increase resilience and the ability to withstand future shocks in the wake of COVID-19: embed environmental sustainability and ESG in strategy, develop new and sustainable business models, improve risk management and business continuity planning and transform supply chains. The time to act is now. Topics Consumer Trends Public Opinion Featured in featured block (1 article with image touted on the front page or elsewhere) Off Duration 0 Sponsored Article Off Shutterstock

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Corporate sustainability leadership during a pandemic

Earth911 Podcast: Thinking Through Post-Growth Living With Philosopher Kate Soper

November 1, 2020 by  
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Arguments against embracing sustainable choices often suggest life will be … The post Earth911 Podcast: Thinking Through Post-Growth Living With Philosopher Kate Soper appeared first on Earth 911.

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Earth911 Podcast: Thinking Through Post-Growth Living With Philosopher Kate Soper

Earth911 Reader: Your Quick Dose Of This Week’s Sustainability, Business and Science News

October 31, 2020 by  
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Earth911 Reader: Your Quick Dose Of This Week’s Sustainability, Business and Science News

Earth911 Reader: This Week’s Sustainability, Recycling, Business and Science News Summarized

October 24, 2020 by  
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Earth911 Reader: This Week’s Sustainability, Recycling, Business and Science News Summarized

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