Green Chemistry Webinar Series for High School Teachers

May 30; June 6; June 13, 2013, 1-2 PM CDT
Register for all three webinars at

The Green Chemistry Webinar Series for High School Teachers is brought to you by the State of Washington Department of Ecology and Beyond Benign. Join us for one, two or all three webinars dedicated to providing useful tools and resources for integrating green chemistry into the high school classroom and laboratory. Find out why and how green chemistry can be used to teach core chemistry concepts while at the same time inspiring students to create the next generation of sustainable products and processes.

Building Energy Labeling Program Expanded

Read the full story at CleanLink.

A building energy labeling program that allows the industry to zero in on opportunities to lower building operating cost and make informed decisions to increase value has been expanded to include an As Designed label.

The program is now two labels in one: an As Designed label that rates the building’s potential energy use under standardized conditions—independent of the building’s occupancy and usage—and an In Operation label that rates the building’s actual measured energy use as influenced by the building’s occupancy and usage.

A building’s utility costs are some of the largest, yet most controllable, operating expenses; therefore, managing a building’s energy efficiency is an integral part of the building’s operational and financial performance.

As the marketplace, the built environment industry and the government look at reducing energy use and saving money, the Building Energy Quotient (bEQ) is an easily understood, yet technically sound, tool for understanding a building’s energy use and identifying opportunities to reduce that use is needed. ASHRAE, a building technology society with more than 50,000 members worldwide, is the developer of bEQ.

Steps Towards Enhancing the Sustainability of Packaging

Read the full story in Environmental Leader.

Sustainable packaging encompasses multiple initiatives, including producing effective solutions with minimum resources, protecting the product, transport efficiency and effective end of life management.  What’s encouraging is that each of the aforementioned can be accomplished one step at a time.

Implementing incremental changes towards sustainable packaging can often achieve a more robust outcome towards comprehensive sustainability than holding off on a product’s release until a complete redesign can be made. It all depends on brand owners’ objectives, including their knowledge of consumer preferences, impact from supplier scorecards, and their own internal sustainability goals.

One caveat, no matter what the company decides to include in its sustainability mix, there will be no greater backlash than the waste of fully-costed products.   These are products that have been manufactured and transported to a retailer only to never be purchased due to a variety of reasons, such as a packaging defect or damage – which can endanger the integrity of the product inside. To balance performance and sustainability, product manufacturers should consider the following points:


Samsung Galaxy S4 Scores First Smartphone Sustainability Certification

Read the full story at Triple Pundit.

Last week, TCO Development granted Samsung’s Galaxy S4 the organization’s first ever sustainability certification for smartphones.

The certification is important for Samsung and the overall smartphone market for several reasons. First, as smartphones proliferate and accomplish everything from reducing usage of laptops to helping alleviate poverty in emerging markets, the world’s resources necessary to manufacture them, from rare earth metals to petroleum, will become more constrained and difficult to procure. Furthermore, consumers are becoming aware of the social cost resulting from their assembly, as last year’s Apple-Foxconn saga clearly demonstrated.

3 must-watch policy fights in sustainable business

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Voluntary corporate sustainability initiatives and environmental policy are essential, but not complete solutions by themselves.

We also need laws, oversight and guidelines to set the entire competitive floor at a level that protects the environment and ensures a quality and quantity of jobs consistent with human dignity. Such a platform will unleash even more innovation, but in directions that are sustainable.

Responsible and sustainably-focused business owners can make a big difference in policy fights by countering what policymakers hear from some in the traditional business community.

Here are three pro-sustainable business policy items the American Sustainable Business Council is working on in conjunction with many other organizations.

Simon Property ups sustainability tech to lure tenants, shoppers

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

As e-commerce siphons an ever-larger portion of retail sales, what keeps businesses and consumers congregating at shopping malls?

For Simon Property Group, the largest real estate company in the world with approximately 326 retail properties in North America and Asia, at least part of the answer is tied its innovative sustainability agenda.

By testing groundbreaking new energy-efficiency and waste-management processes, for example, the mall operator hopes to encourage successful retailers to take up residence because their operating costs might be lower in a Simon Property than elsewhere.