Day: June 4, 2013

3 Steps to Smarten Up Your Green Marketing

Read the full post at Environmental Leader.

We’ve heard the rumors, read the blogs, and saw the headlines that said green marketing is dead. To me, that was good news. We certainly do not need another man-hugging-polar bear commercial cut loose on the airwaves. I guess marketers figured out no one buys an electric car to save melting ice caps. They buy it to save themselves from melting down at the gas pump.

So here’s the thing. What’s dead in green marketing are those first attempts that made big fat assumptions that people would choose the environment over their own needs. Like saving money. Like providing healthy food for their kids. Like growing stronger plants.

Nanomaterials and their scope for energy-efficient buildings of the future

Read the full story at Silicon Republic.

With the building sector responsible for 40pc of total energy consumption in the EU, what role can nanomaterials play in improving the energy performance of buildings? We speak to Acciona’s Jesus Isoird ahead of the nanotechnology conference, the EuroNanoForum, that’s taking place in Dublin in June.

EPA and NIH Announce the Winning Team in My Air, My Health Challenge

Today the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) and the National Institutes of Health (NIH) announced the winner of the My Air, My Health Challenge. The Challenge called upon innovators nationwide to design a small, low-cost sensor that integrates air quality measurements with related health data, such as heart rate and breathing. Such innovations will help EPA and NIH as they continue their work together to better understand, in real time, the impacts of harmful air pollution on people’s health.

Judges for the EPA and NIH challenge selected the team of David Kuller, Gabrielle Savage Dockterman, and Dot Kelly from among finalist teams. The award will be presented today at Health Datapalooza IV in Washington, D.C.

The winning team will receive a $100,000 award for developing Conscious Clothing, a wearable, real-time breathing analysis tool that calculates the amount of polluted air a person inhales. Estimates of pollution exposure result from how deeply the person breathes and how much pollution is in the air. This data is transmitted to any Bluetooth-enabled device, such as a cellphone.

“This integration of technologies represents a growing area of interest for environmental and health scientists,” said Glenn Paulson, Ph.D., EPA science advisor. “We’re at the edge of a technology wave where anyone can use these sensors – these innovations will help EPA better understand air pollution’s impacts on people’s health. The potential impact on personal health care and local environmental quality is tremendous.”

“With people wearing these new data-collecting devices, researchers will be able to see and understand the relationships between varying levels of chemical exposures and individual health responses—in real time,” said Linda Birnbaum, Ph.D., director of the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences, part of the NIH. “This is a big step forward toward treating, and more importantly, preventing disease and illness. This is an exciting time in research.”

These types of low-cost, portable, easy-to-use sensors have the potential to produce a more complete picture of air quality and individual health in communities across the country.

More information on the My Air, My Health Challenge:

DOE Publishes Notice of Public Meeting and Availability of the Framework Document for Refrigerated Beverage Vending Machine Standards

The Department of Energy has published a notice of public meeting and availability of the framework document regarding energy conservation standards for refrigerated beverage vending machines. 78 FR 33262 (June 4, 2013).

  • Find more information on the rulemaking, including milestones, statutory authority, rulemaking documents, and any other related rulemakings.
  • All notices, public comments, public meeting transcripts, and supporting documents associated with this rulemaking are included in Docket No. EERE-2013-BT-STD-0022.
  • Learn how to participate in the public meeting/webinar scheduled for June 20, 2013.
  • Find information about how to comment on the rulemaking. The public comment period closes July 19, 2013. When submitting comments, please only reference the Federal Register version of the notice.
  • Find product information about current standards and test procedures; recent product updates; waivers, exceptions, and exemptions; the statutory authority; historical information; and contact information.

EPA and USDA Join Together To Help Americans Reduce Wasted Food

Today EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe joined U.S. Department of Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack to announcethe launch of a challenge that asks farmers, processors, manufacturers, retailers, communities and government agencies to reduce wasted food. The U.S. Food Waste Challenge builds upon the success of EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge to help more Americans do their part to reduce food waste.

“Food waste is the single largest type of waste entering our landfills — Americans throw away up to 40 percent of their food. Addressing this issue helps to combat hunger and save money, while also combating climate change. Food waste in landfills decomposes to create potent greenhouse gases and by reducing this waste we can in turn reduce greenhouse gas emissions,” said EPA Acting Administrator Bob Perciasepe. “I’m proud that EPA is joining with USDA today to announce the U.S. Food Waste Challenge. With the help of partners across the country, we can ensure that our nation’s food goes to our families and those in need – not the landfill.”

“The United States enjoys the most productive and abundant food supply on earth, but too much of this food goes to waste,” said Agriculture Secretary Tom Vilsack. “Not only could this food be going to folks who need it – we also have an opportunity to reduce the amount of food that ends up in America’s landfills. By joining together with EPA and businesses from around the country, we have an opportunity to better educate folks about the problem of food waste and begin to address this problem across the nation.”

Americans send more food to landfills and incinerators than any other single municipal solid waste (MSW) – 35 million tons– even more than paper and plastic. When wasted food is sent to landfills, it decomposes and becomes a source of methane, a potent greenhouse gas that contributes to climate change. In addition, the production and transportation of food has a number of environmental impacts; by reducing wasted food our society helps conserve energy and reduces environmental impacts.

In 2010, EPA began challenging organizations along the food lifecycle to adopt more sustainable practices through its National Sustainable Materials Management (SMM) program’s Food Recovery Challenge (FRC). EPA’s Food Recovery Challenge provides direct technical assistance, a tracking system, and recognition to help support and motivate organizations to reduce their food waste. Through the simple act of measuring food that is wasted, organizations can immediately identify simple changes that lead to big reductions. More than 200 organizations are now participating in the Food Recovery Challenge.

How Playworld Systems makes outdoor play sustainable

Read the full story at GreenBiz.

Playworld Systems, a leading manufacturer of imaginative playground and fitness equipment, is committed to measurably reducing its impact on the environment. The company’s aggressive action to eliminate polyvinyl chloride (PVC) helped Playworld Systems become the first and only playground manufacturer to have its products Cradle to Cradle Certified Silver.

McDonough Braungart Design Chemistry (MBDC) interviewed Curtis Cleveland, director of environmental and materials engineering of Playworld Systems.


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