Obama’s science diaspora prepares for a fight

Read the full story in the Washington Post.

Science, more than many fields, feeds on a collaborative spirit. Former staffers from President Barack Obama’s science office have taken this to heart: They are fanning out, finding jobs in academia, at nonprofits and elsewhere, but they continue to work together, largely behind the scenes. This science diaspora, as one former staffer called it, is ready to both push forward on the ambitious science-related agendas of the previous administration, and to defend against the attacks on science emanating from the new White House.

To create meaningful change, apparel brands need to pursue sustainability at the industry level

Read the full story at Ensia.

Investment in industry-level research and development can give consumers a meaningful metric of sustainability.

How new technologies are shrinking wastewater’s hefty carbon footprint

Read the full story at Ensia.

Communities looking to reduce fossil fuel use find opportunity in energy-hogging treatment plants.

Climate change is more than a tech problem, so we need more than a tech solution

Read the full story in Ensia.

Climate change is just one of many related sustainability problems that the world faces. In addition to rising atmospheric CO2, we are approaching or have already exceeded multiple other planetary boundaries — such as fresh water, nitrogen, phosphorus and biodiversity loss — that CO2-mitigating technologies cannot solve. Solving climate change on its own would require immense investments but leave too many other problems unaddressed. That is not to say that these technological innovations are irrelevant; Pacala and Socolow’s desire to break down the challenge into manageable pieces is both valid and appreciable. What’s missing from their assessment is the fact that the world is a complex system, and systemic problems require systemic solutions.

Eliminating HFCs faster will cut climate harm

Read the full story at EnvironmentalResearchWeb.

Eliminating chlorofluorocarbons (CFCs) and hydrochlorofluorocarbons (HCFCs) from our refrigerators and air-conditioning units, thereby helping the ozone hole to heal, has been a global success story. But the hydrofluorocarbons (HFCs) used to replace CFCs and HCFCs are potent greenhouse gases. Now a study shows that early action to reduce HFCs could bring huge benefits, with more than 90% of the atmospheric impacts of HFCs avoided if they are phased out by 2030.

Look who’s helping your clothes make the transition to a warmer world

Read the full story at Ensia.

The cotton industry is turning to innovation to help it weather challenging growing conditions ahead.

States Scramble to Salvage Climate Fight Trump Abandoned

Read the full story in Governing.

Donald Trump’s plan to bring an abrupt halt to America’s crusade against climate change will test California and other states like never before as they seek to wrest control of the nation’s energy future from a hostile White House.

EPA to Review the Clean Power Plan Under President Trump’s Executive Order

On Tuesday, at the Environmental Protection Agency surrounded by American energy workers, public employees and members of Congress, President Donald Trump signed the Energy Independence Executive Order to protect thousands of jobs and strengthen energy security, while also ensuring that our policies provide clean air and clean water for all of our citizens.

The Energy Independence Executive Order directs agencies responsible for regulating domestic energy production to submit plans to the White House, which will identify, and propose measures to revise or rescind, regulatory barriers that impede progress towards energy independence.  Moreover, the Order rescinds several Obama executive orders and policies related to climate change.  It also directs the Administrator of the Environmental Protection Agency and the Secretary of the Interior to review, and if necessary, revise or rescind, several regulations that may place unnecessary, costly burdens on coal-fired electric utilities, coal miners, and oil and gas producers.

“The American people deserve an EPA that works to protect both the environment and enables a growing economy,” said Administrator Pruitt. “Our EPA puts America first. President Trump has a clear vision to create jobs and his vision is completely compatible with a clean and healthy environment. By taking these actions today, the EPA is returning the Agency to its core mission of protecting public health while also being pro-energy independence.”

You can see the Executive Order here: https://www.whitehouse.gov/the-press-office/2017/03/28/presidential-executive-order-promoting-energy-independence-and-economi-1

Administrator Scott Pruitt’s Remarks

Thank you, thank you very much. Welcome to the EPA.

Perhaps this is your first visit to the EPA for some of you; it’s good to see some coal miners here at the EPA. So, welcome to you, here.

We are gathered in the map room here at the EPA.  Maps are intended to help you navigate; maps are intended to help you work toward a destination, journey toward a destination, and as we gather here today, the President is setting a new journey, a new pathway forward on how we are going to do business in this country, with respect to energy and the environment.

Number one, the president, by his signature today is rejecting the narrative that this country cannot be both pro-energy and pro-environment.  We have done that throughout our history. We can actually achieve good jobs, good growth and pro-energy policies at the same time as protecting our environment.  The president is sending that message today, by his signature today on this executive order.

But, number two, he’s also setting a pathway forward, a journey to say that we are no longer going to have regulatory assault on any given sector of our economy.  That is going to end by the signing of this executive order. We are not going to allow regulations here at the EPA to pick winners and losers.  And that is going to be very important as we chart the pathway forward.

But, the third thing is that we are going to play within the rules. The EPA should pass rules that are within the framework that Congress has established. That sounds pretty novel, but that is exactly what should occur. We shouldn’t reimagine our authority to pick winners and losers. We are going to provide regulatory certainty. So, the president is setting a new pathway forward that is going to literally make sure that we transform our economy, grow jobs and also protect our environment. And it’s an exciting day and I appreciate his leadership.

I now have the opportunity to introduce a good friend, a patriot, a partner in this process to make sure we are achieving the president’s objectives – the Vice President of the United States, Michael Pence.

The World’s First Mall for Recycled Goods

Read the full post at Make Wealth History.

Last week I wrote about the Edinburgh Remakery, and how they are trying to foster a culture of repair. It’s one of the most shared posts I’ve ever written, and there’s clearly a real interest in this whole idea. Lots of you have been in touch to share similar projects, including this one from Sweden.

ReTuna Återbruksgalleria is a mall dedicated entirely to repaired and upcycled goods. It combines a traditional municipal recycling centre with a shopping centre, so that people can drop off goods that they no longer need, and then browse for something new – perhaps stopping off at the cafe in between. It’s the first mall of its kind in Sweden, and as far as they know, the first in the world.

The Dark Legacy of China’s Drive for Global Resources

Read the full story at Environment360.

As China pursues a startling array of energy, mining, logging, agricultural, and infrastructure projects on virtually every continent, it is having an unprecedented environmental impact on the planet.