Wal-Mart expands school plastic bag recycling program

Via Waste News:

Wal-Mart Stores Inc. is expanding its partnership with elementary schools to recycle plastic shopping bags.

The Bentonville, Ark.-based retailer will begin offering its Kids Recycling Challenge program in September in 12 states: Arizona, Arkansas, California, Colorado, Idaho, Montana, Nevada, New Mexico, Oregon, Utah, Washington and Wyoming.

Schools that join the program receive a 60-gallon collection bag from Wal-Mart, which encourages students to bring in plastic retail and grocery bags for recycling. The program will run from Sept. 1 through March 30.

Wal-Mart will donate $5 to each school for each bag they fill. The retailer will group the schools into 26 geographic locations and award the top three schools in each region $3,000, $2,000 and $1,000, respectively.

Schools finishing in fourth through 10th place in each region will earn a $250 bonus.

Dawn of the next dot-com?

Read the full story in the Sustainable Industries Journal.

Veteran corporate execs and venture capitalists are psyched about “cleantech.”

From World Cup to World Bank, climate actions rise

Read the full story in the Washington Post.

The World Cup, a movie by former U.S. Vice President Al Gore and the World Bank are all doing their bit to fight global warming by using the burgeoning but barely regulated business of “carbon neutrality.”

Nuclear Economics: A Renaissance of Important Questions

An excellent tip sheet on the economics of nuclear power from the Society of Environmental Journalists.

Wall Street Sees the Green in Going Green

Read the full story at RenewableEnergyAccess.com (via Hugg).

Wall Street gathers this week at the largest U.S. finance forum dedicated to reviewing investment in the growing renewable energy sector. Last year, investors put more than $48 billion worldwide into clean energy companies and projects such as wind farms and ethanol plants. This year, that figure is expected to rise to approximately $60 billion, according to research firm New Energy Finance.

Ethanol's water demands cause for scrutiny, not alarm

Read the full story at PlanetSave.com (via Hugg).

While many are excited about producing ethanol some in the Midwest are worried about the strain on the water supply. It takes about 300 million gallons of water for processing the product and cooling equipment to make 100 million gallons of ethanol each year.

Note that the focus of the article is Champaign-Urbana and the Mahomet Aquifer.

Think Inside the Box: How a business can pick the best packaging

Read the full story at Grist Magazine (via Hugg).

If you’ve been trying to get your company’s shipping department to switch from virgin plastic to recycled cardboard, green-biz guru Joel Makower has one word for you: stop. Well, at least stop long enough to consider the other big environmental factors in play when it comes to packaging — things like weight and fuel usage and energy impact. Making the best green choice involves more than thinking about those three little arrows on the bottom of the box.

U.S. Lawmakers Push Sugar As Fuel Source

Read the full story at CBSNews.com (via Hugg).

“With the market for corn-based ethanol booming, lawmakers from sugar-producing U.S. states are hoping that beet and cane growers can soon jump onto the renewable fuel bandwagon. They cite the model of Brazil, which produces ethanol made from sugar cane. But critics, pointing out that sugar is much cheaper in Brazil than in the United States, question whether the economics of sugar-based ethanol would work in America. The U.S. Department of Agriculture is expected to issue a long-awaited study around July 1 on the viability of converting sugar into ethanol.”

New bicycle design eliminates chain, derailleur and sprocket

Read the full story in GizMag (via Hugg).

“US-based Dynacraft has introduced the Dekra-D Drive bike which has an internal drive shaft which offers less maintenance, greater safety and a cleaner solution than a conventional chain-driven bike.” Via Digg.

Nanosponges go commercial

Read the full story in Environmental Science and Technology.

Tiny particles soak up pollutants.