Wednesday, September 30, 2009
The bill would require a 20-percent emission reduction by 2020 from 2005 levels of CO2 emissions. The House bill requires a 17-percent reduction. Both bills target an 83-percent reduction by 2050.
The bill sets up a cap-and-trade system, which would allow industry members to buy and sell emissions within a total emissions cap. The House bill has a similar cap-and-trade system included.
The introduction of the bill is expected to ignite a climate change debate in the Senate within several committees before a debate on the Senate floor later this year. For more info on the bill, check out this story from The Boston Globe.
Tuesday, September 29, 2009
As the pivotal conference approaches, scientific reports are coming out that are raising the stakes. The U.N. released a report this week that states that the world is on course for a 6.3 degree temperature increases even if all the proposed actions are implemented by every government worldwide. Part of the report is particularly scary as it states that the worst-case scenarios for global climate disasters are actually worse—and not as far in the future—as previously thought.
For a good summary of all the recent news in the global warming debate, check out this story from The Daily Green that contains links to six items that are making news.
Monday, September 28, 2009
The automaker announced a new vision that will attempt to produce cars that produce no harmful exhaust emissions or environmentally-impacting carbon dioxide. Yes, they said no emissions. And, the company is putting its money where its mouth is by investing $2 billion in the project through 2014.
Volvo and other automakers are working towards the 35.5 mpg federal standard that will be in place as of 2015. The standard was part of the federal legislation passed by Washington last year that legislators, unions, and automakers all agreed on as part of a compromise.
For more information on how automakers are going green, check out this story from The Daily Green.
Friday, September 25, 2009
So, what is one to do with these annoying little things? You can reuse and recycle them to save money and keep the environment cleaner. The Daily Green has put together a list of 11 ways to do so. Check it out here.
Thursday, September 24, 2009
The East Cambridge Planning Team, which is comprised of concerned citizens of the Cambridge and Somerville area, is hosting a presentation and public discussion on the subject of the Lechmere relocation on Wednesday, Oct. 14, from 7:00-9:00 p.m. at the East End House on 105 Spring Street in Cambridge. The purpose of the meeting will be to discuss how to ensure that the new Lechmere Station does the best job possible of serving as a hub into the neighborhood. Specific topics will include pedestrian crossings of O'Brien Highway, preservation of current buildings, improving the new station's entrances and lobbies, and intregrating the station into the future North Point Street Grid.
Wednesday, September 23, 2009
Boston to Worcester and New Bedford to Fall River. Once the Commonwealth owns the lines, it will become possible for the MBTA to offer increased service. Currently, freight trains have priority over passenger trains, which limits the times that the passenger trains can run.
Lieutenant Governor Timothy Murray, who announced the agreement today, did not say how much the Commonwealth is paying for the lines or give any indication of a timetable for service changes along the lines.
“The Patrick administration is dedicated to improving freight and passenger rail system for the long-term health of our economy and our environment,” Murray told The Herald. “A vibrant rail network that serves both passengers and freight needs is an important part of our transportation system.”
For more info, check out the full story here.
Tuesday, September 22, 2009
From buying local products to purchasing organic goods in a smart manner, these tips are sure to help you on your way to living a greener lifestyle. Check out the full list when you get a chance.
Monday, September 21, 2009
Here are some interesting facts from the report, courtesy of The Daily Green:
More than 95% of population growth is occurring in developing countries, especially in Africa and Asia, regions that account for more than three-quarters of the current population. U.N. demographers estimate that by mid-century, Africa will be adding 21 million people a year to world population and Asia 5 million.
Although the populations of Japan, Germany, Russia, and some Eastern European countries are already declining, U.N. demographers do not indicate a population peak among industrial countries as a group until 2036.
Global spending on contraceptive supplies and services totaled $338 million in 2007, considerably less than half the amount in 1995 — despite a 20% increase in the number of people of reproductive age in developing countries.
Friday, September 18, 2009
Environmentalists say the voluntary carbon market has doubled since the beginning of 2008. Using My Emissions Exchange, consumers can sell their credits to participating companies. The credits are currently trading between $10 and $25 on the site.
For more info on the voluntary carbon market and My Emissions Exchange, check out this story from The Daily Green.
Thursday, September 17, 2009
The good news is that the expansion of the hole has stopped, and scientists still believe that the hole will gradually get smaller as time goes by. As part of the protocol, the release of almost all ozone-depleting chemicals is not only regulated but flat-out banned by the end of next year.
There's a lesson to be learned here. While it's easy for man to cause environmental problems by releasing excess chemicals and carbon into the air, it takes decades, if not centuries, for us to reverse or stop these effects. For more info on the ozone hole, check out this story from The Daily Green.
Wednesday, September 16, 2009
Andy Palmer, head of the company's green vehicle program, said that even in countries such as the U.S. and China, where the majority of electricity is generated from fossil fuels, an electric car is responsible for 24 to 54 percent less emissions than a conventional car.
Nissan is currently working on its Leaf electric vehicle, which is slated to be released late in 2010. For more info, check out this story from Business Green.
Tuesday, September 15, 2009
In addition, the study suggested that a global switch to renewable energy would prevent 10 billion tons of carbon emissions by 2030. If this switch were to happen, employment in the renewable energy industry would increase from about 1.9 million to about 6.9 million, according to the study. The study went on to discuss how job creation in the renewable energy field could be used to combat rising unemployment rates because of the current economic recession.
For more info, check out this story from Business Green.
Monday, September 14, 2009
Emissions from livestock make up between 5 and 18 percent of man-made greenhouse gas emissions, depending on who you ask. Methane warms the Earth at about a 20 times faster rate than CO2.
As the Earth's population continues to grow, more livestock will need to be raised to feed the growing population. Previously, the only option seemed to be to give up meat altogether, a stance that environmentalists have long championed. But, experts say that dietary additives could not only reduce methane emissions from livestock but also provide better nutrition for the animals and higher yields to farmers.
For more information on the potential of reducing methane emissions from cattle, check out this story from cnn.com.
Friday, September 11, 2009
For those of you that are interested in cutting your energy bill, this means that the televisions will cost you 40 percent less money to operate. Once you decide it's time to buy a television, you can search for Energy Star-rated televisions on the Energy Star website here. There are currently 19 plasma TVs and 199 LCD models that qualify for the rating.
For more information on this as well as how to recycle your old TV, click here.
Thursday, September 10, 2009
Also in the link above, you will find clips and descriptions from three films debuting soon, including No Impact Man, The Age of Stupid, and Crude. These films depict various environmental injustices going on in the world.
Wednesday, September 9, 2009
Northern Arizona University researchers used samples of lake soil as well as data from weather stations in the Arctic to create a decade-by-decade history for the average temperatures of the region. From the year 1 AD until 1900, the researchers estimated that the region cooled by .2 degrees Celsius per 100 years. However, by 1950, the temperatures in the region were .7 degrees warmer than would be expected at the rate of change demonstrated during the previous 1,900 years had continued.
It is important to note that this data supports the data of other studies which has suggested that temperature patterns in the Arctic regions of the Earth have changed during recent years. For more information on the study, check out this story from Business Green.
Tuesday, September 8, 2009
The state Department of Veteran Affairs has hired a Haverhill-based company called Veterans Northeast Outreach Center to assist with the job training and placement services necessary for the project.
“We are proud and privileged to have been selected,’’ said John Ratka, executive director of Veterans Northeast. “This provides an outstanding opportunity for veterans and their families to improve their quality of life."
The project is being funded by a $500,000 grant from the U.S. Department of Labor and can be renewed for up to two more years. The grant is one of 17 that the department gave out to help veterans find jobs.
For more info on this project, check out this story from The Globe.
Thursday, September 3, 2009
This would alleviate one of the major drawbacks of electric cars—something often referred to as "range anxiety." Currently, electric cars only have a range of about 100 miles before they need to be charged. This can cause a feeling of anxiety in drivers who are used to going 300 miles or more in between trips to the fuel station.
For more info on this as well as the latest on automated driving technology (Who wouldn't love a car that drives itself?), check out this story from The Daily Green.
Wednesday, September 2, 2009
Company officials said the store uses fuel-cell technology and solar power to generate power. The use of green energy reduces the release of about 750 metric tons of CO2 into the atmosphere, which is the equivalent of removing about 90 cars from the road.
“We are always looking for innovative ways to improve our green operations and to explore the newest renewable energy technologies and recycling initiatives,’’ said Lee Kane, a spokesman for Whole Foods Market’s North Atlantic region.
In addition to using green, self-produced energy, the store also recycles or reuses 80 percent of its waste.
Tuesday, September 1, 2009
An EPA cooperative alliance with the supermarket industry, the GreenChill Partnership works with supermarkets to reduce their emissions of ozone-depleting and greenhouse gas refrigerants.
Whole Foods, a nationwide chain of supermarkets and a GreenChill Founding Partner, received the award for Most Improved Emissions Rate. Another food retailer with many outlets in New England and nationwide, Supervalu, was recognized for achieving its emissions target in 2008/09. Supervalu’s stores in New England are Shaw’s Supermarkets and Star Market.
To read the rest of this story, click here.