Day: October 16, 2013

Illinois Next Generation Science Standards

The Next Generation Science Standards (NGSS) are available for public review and comment in Illinois. Comments will be accepted until November 18, 2013. Visit the Web page at for instructions. Information about the adoption of the NGSS in Illinois is listed in the section titled, “Proposed Amendments to Part 1 (Public Schools Evaluation, Recognition and Supervision).”

What will sustainable supply chains look like in the future?

Read the full story in Supply Management.

What might supply chains look like in 10, 20 or 50 years’ time? What will the sustainability risks and opportunities be? How will supply chains need to evolve?

Mapping the future is always a challenge, but as we look ahead it’s clear sustainability mega-trends are coming our way. Rising demand for food, energy, living space and water; and the challenge of dealing with climate change will continue to have a profound impact on the global economy and the vast network of supply chains that are part of it. Business will need to look at these issues, understand the impact that they will have on their operations, and then focus on what they will do to mitigate these impacts.

Worm turns from zero to climate change hero

Read the full story in New Scientist.

Is the earthworm turning into a global warming saviour? Earlier this year, the animals were cast as key contributors to climate change, but they may have been falsely accused.

A fifth of carbon dioxide emissions come from soils, and earthworms play a central role. They churn up soil, encouraging breakdown of organic matter to produce CO2. They also drive subterranean processes that both lock up and release carbon.

A recent review of more than 200 published studies by Ingrid Lubbers of Wageningen University in the Netherlands and colleagues concluded that worms increase CO2 emissions from soils by a third on average.

Weixin Zhang of the South China Botanical Garden in Guangzhou says things are more complex. His team’s work shows that microbes in the guts of earthworms convert organic carbon into a form that can be stored in soils.

New Grist Fellowship Program

Question? Contact
Want to grow as a journalist while absorbing a universe of green knowledge? Apply to be a fellow at Grist. We are an independent nonprofit media organization that shapes the country’s environmental conversations, making green second nature for our monthly audience of 1,500,000 and growing. We reach the next generation by cutting through the noise to connect big issues like climate change to daily life, and by spotlighting the people and ideas leading us to a more sustainable future.
What is the Grist Fellowship Program?
The Grist Fellowship Program is an opportunity for early-career writers, editors, and others with diverse backgrounds to hone their journalistic skills at a national news outlet and deepen their knowledge of environmental issues. The fellowship offers exposure to the leading sustainability thinkers and theories of our time, real-world experience at a fast-paced news site, and access to the yummiest snacks this side of Saskatchewan.
What is expected of the fellows?
The fellows will make daily contributions to Grist’s editorial operations, including (but not limited to) research, reporting, story ideas, writing, and multimedia projects. We will encourage full participation in staff discussions and meetings, seek input on issues large and small, and support special projects.
What are the details?
Fellows work full-time out of Grist’s Seattle office. Fellows must make a six-month commitment. After six months, the fellowship will be renewable once by mutual agreement between the fellow and Grist. The fellowship pays $2,250 per month.
Who should apply?
Curious, self-motivated, hard-working individuals who want to raise the bar for environmental journalism and who have a profound interest in growing as a storyteller. We are looking for writers, reporters, and editors, as well as content creators in new media areas such as video, social media, data visualization, animation, and multimedia programming. Candidates are most likely college graduates or j-school grads with some experience in the field. You don’t need a ton of experience, but you do need solid skills and a sense of humor. Help us put the ‘ha’ in climate change! (Even better: Help us come up with a better kicker.)
Where do I apply?
For fellowships that begin in February 2014, please submit applications by November 15, 2013.
No phone calls, please and thank you.
Grist is an equal-opportunity employer.

San Francisco posts open data on energy use in city buildings

Read the full story in Sustainable Industries.

The San Francisco Public Utilities Commission (SFPUC) this week released its second annual Energy Benchmarking Report, which details energy usage information for nearly 450 municipal buildings – including, for the first time, over 130 school district facilities – and tracks data that city departments are successfully utilizing to monitor and reduce energy consumption.

The report details the 2012 energy use of 446 public facilities including schools, libraries, medical clinics, police stations and more. Altogether, the buildings in the report comprise more than 46 million square feet of floor space, an increase of more than 9 million square feet over the buildings included in the 2011 Energy Benchmarking Report. City departments can – and very well should – use the data to track the efficacy of energy efficiency efforts as well as unexpected spikes in energy use at the city facilities they manage.

Climate After Growth

Download the document.

In this provocative paper, PCI Executive Director Asher Miller and Transition Movement Founder (and PCI Fellow) Rob Hopkins make a convincing case for why the environmental community must embrace post-growth economics and community resilience in their efforts to address the climate crisis.