Month: July 2011

E-Cube: A DIY solar home from Belgium

Read the full story at SmartPlanet.

One of the most highly anticipated and closely watched entries for the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Decathlon 2011 is a self-assembled kit for sustainable living from Team Belgium.  The E-Cube is an energy and cost efficient solar powered home designed by a team of students from Ghent University.

That’s Not Trash, That’s Dinner

Read the full story in the New York Times.

Peels, stalks, rinds, stems — if home cooks reconsidered what should go into the pot, and what into the trash, what would they find?

Video: Urbana’s Straw Bale House

Watch the video.

The Urbana straw bale house was built by co-owner of New Prairie Construction Julie Birdwell, who is also a University of Illinois graduate. Julie and her business partner, Jill Mulder, built the house with sustainability in mind using straw bales from local farms.

Green Living in Summer

Read the full post at This Green Life.

Summer, in a temperate climate, lends itself to a more natural, less energy-intensive way of living, as I explain in my July column for NRDC, Summertime and Green Living is Easy. (In hotter regions, make that “spring and fall.”) The key is working with the weather, not fighting it.

Climate Corps 2011: Social Networking’s Role in the Energy Revolution

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Creating an energy intelligence vision for Facebook, a company that quickly and completely changed the world’s vision for communications, is no small task.

Facebook continues to transform the ways we receive and use information every day. And we, Facebook’s three EDF Climate Corps fellows, are spending this summer developing new ways for the company to receive and use its energy information going forward.

A Fresh(water) Look at Wind Power

Read the full post at Think Progress.

With the latest dismal jobs report still fresh in the nation’s mind, it becomes increasingly clear that our current job creation efforts just aren’t cutting it. It is time to take action on facilitating new, emerging sectors that have been proven to create employment opportunities.

A new study from the Brookings Institution found that from 2003 to 2010, the clean economy grew by 8.3 percent—almost double what the overall economy grew during those years. Further, the clean economy currently employs 2.7 million workers across a diverse group of industries—more than the biosciences and fossil fuel sectors.

Offshore wind energy is one sector of the clean economy that has been able to realize its job-creating potential in other parts of the world. While America has yet to install our first offshore turbine, other countries are moving quickly to capitalize on this vast resource. France waded into the fray most recently with the announcement of a plan for five offshore wind projects with a combined capacity of three GW—an endeavor they project will support more than 10,000 jobs in the first round of bidding.

A Triple Dose of EDF Climate Corps from Inside Adidas, Kettle Cuisine and SunGard

Read the full post at Triple Pundit.

This summer, Triple Pundit will follow three environmental change agents participating in the Environmental Defense Fund’s Climate Corps program. EDF Climate Corps recruits and trains top-tier MBA students and places them in leading corporations to identify and develop practical, actionable energy efficiency solutions.

Can You Be Sure Your Packaging Isn’t Toxic?

Read the full post at GreenBiz.

After a fresh produce company was informed that the ink on its plastic bags contained lead well above the limit set by state laws, it turned away 15 container loads of packaging being sent from overseas and sought out a new supplier.

The testing was done by the Toxics in Packaging Clearinghouse (TPCH), and while the produce company was able to confirm the group’s findings, which were reported in 2009, other companies with packaging that violated state laws replied with certificates from testing laboratories that showed they were in compliance.

This kind of finding means that even if you’re doing your due diligence, you could still end up on the wrong side of regulations. But the TPCH is working to bring more assurance to the process and educate testers and the companies using them about what they can do to guarantee their results are as accurate as possible.

Re:char: A 2011 Social Venture Network Innovation Award Winner

Read the full story at Care2.

Last year I wrote about re:char, a company based out of Austin, TX that works with subsistence farmers in Kenya to empower  them and improve their livelihoods through an unlikely — until you think about it –  resource called biochar.

Big Green Bus rolls on french-fry fumes to teach sustainability

Read the full story in the Dallas Morning News.

French fries are a staple for many college students, but for the crew of the Big Green Bus, they’re what keeps them going.

Thirteen students from Dartmouth College rolled into Dallas on Monday in their environmental classroom on wheels: a converted Greyhound bus that runs on biodiesel and vegetable oil.

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