Day: January 18, 2013

Minnesota folk rocker/scholar studies environmental music, plays it too

Read the full story at Great Lakes Echo.

Folk rocker and scholar Mark Pedelty plays music to better understand how it influences environmental attitudes. The front man for the Minneapolis-based Hypoxic Punks, Pedelty explains the potential music has to inspire and motivate.

Vending Reinvented: Imagine a supermarket where packaged goods are made to order

Read the full story in The Hub Magazine.

It’s amazing how technology has changed our lives over the last few decades with the advent of personal computers, smart phones, and the internet. However, with the exception of improvements at self check-out, the retail store remains essentially unchanged, especially the store shelves. As marketers seek to satisfy the desires and preferences of an ever growing populous with pre-packaged flavors, scents and sizes, the proliferation of product offerings clogs our shelves, confuses our shoppers and stresses our planet.

We need to rethink product packaging, as it is the single largest category of landfill waste and the biggest component of ocean litter that harms marine life. The average American produces about 4.4 pounds of garbage a day and 1,600 pounds a year. The Environmental Protection Agency reports that the energy to produce, use and dispose of products and packaging, accounts for 44 percent of total US greenhouse gas emissions. While we have embraced the convenience of disposability, the reality is that a disposable society is no longer a sustainable one.

The world simply cannot continue to satisfy the variety of consumer desires with pre-packaged goods. I envision something radically different. By incorporating the sophisticated technologies of modern culture, we can create game-changing packaging solutions for a more sustainable future.

Every Day Capacity Building Grants

Deadlines: April 30 and October 30, 2013
The National Environmental Education Foundation’s Every Day Grants will assist the stewardship of public lands by strengthening Friends Groups through funding for organizational capacity building. Twenty-five Every Day Grants of up to $5,000 each will be awarded to those groups who make the best case for how the funds will build their capacity to better serve the lands they love.

Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes

Deadline: April 30, 2013
The Gloria Barron Prize for Young Heroes celebrates inspiring, public-spirited, highly diverse young people from all across America. Each year, the Barron Prize honors 25 outstanding young leaders, ages 8 to 18, who have made a significant positive difference to people and our planet. The top 10 winners each receive a $2,500 cash award to support their service work or higher education. The primary goal of the Prize is to shine the spotlight on these amazing young people so that their stories will inspire others.

World’s Greenest Building, Bullitt Center, Opens on Earth Day in Seattle

Read the full story at Triple Pundit.

Nestled between downtown Seattle and the Capitol Hill district, the Bullitt Center will open on Earth Day, April 22. Builders of the six-story, 50,000 square-foot building claim it will be the “greenest” office building on the planet. Ground broke in August 2011, and since then few green building details have been left unturned, from water efficiency, renewable energy and choice of construction materials. If anything close to a zero-impact office building exists, the Bullitt Center is it.

Inside, tenants will benefit from abundant natural light, plenty of fresh air and overall a healthier environment than can be found in most commercial buildings. The builders bypassed the U.S. Green Building Council’s LEED certification in favor of the strenuous Living Building Challenge standards.

Texas researcher looks into biodiesel production from lignin

Read the full story in Biomass Magazine.

A two-year research project aims to crack the lignin question by engineering a microbe to break down the byproduct into a lipid, or fat, and then into biodiesel. The research has the potential to make cellulosic ethanol refineries more profitable.

Japanese research team produces Euglena-based bioplastic

Read the full story in Biomass Magazine.

Japanese researchers have developed a bioplastic material derived from the microorganism Euglena and compounds obtained from cashew nut shells. According to information released by Japan-based Advanced Low Carbon Technology Research and Development Program (ALCA), the resulting plastic contains 70 percent plant-derived components. The study was conducted as part of the development of low carbon technologies under the Japan Science and Technology Agency.

“Beyond Energy Efficiency: Behavior Change Tactics for the Pollution Prevention Community” webinar archive and slides

In case you missed yesterday’s GLRPPR webinar “Beyond Energy Efficiency: Behavior Change Tactics for the Pollution Prevention Community”, the archive is available at and the presentation slides are available at

If you did attend yesterday’s webinar (or if you watch the archive in the next week or so), please take a moment to fill out the evaluation at

This webinar is part of the Behavior Change and Social Media webinar series sponsored by the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange. Register for other webinars in the series at