Checking in on Columbus, OH a year after Smart City Challenge

Read the full story at Construction Dive.

The Vulcan grant is focused on electrification of transportation and is centered on four areas: decarbonization, electric vehicle fleet adoption, consumer electric vehicle adoption and charging stations. The seven-county central Ohio region currently has 118 stations, with an additional 305 planned by the end of the grant.

Is development draining the FL aquifer system beyond repair?

Read the full story in Waste Dive.

Florida Gov. Rick Scott announced last month that the state had seen the number of private businesses increase by 16.5% since December 2010. While many of the net 75,449 businesses added since then are homegrown, the figure also includes those coming from out of state to set up shop. The growth in the number of businesses in the state is one contributor to its strong population growth currently.

That’s good news and bad news for the state. The good news is that all those new people will need places to live, shop, work, learn, relax and seek medical care, which means a boost for the state’s construction industry and its workers. Local and state agencies also get to collect more property, sales and other taxes as a result.

The bad news is that the strain on the state’s aquifer system — the subterranean limestone reservoirs that provide most of the water that Floridians use to drink, bathe and water their lawns — is starting to become evident.

Restaurants have a huge food waste problem; could an app help?

Read the full story in The Guardian.

Smart tech from startup Winnow has already helped Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall restaurant reduce waste by a third.

Panel supports six disinfection byproducts as potential carcinogens

Read the full story in Environmental Factor.

A panel of scientific experts, convened June 24 by the National Toxicology Program (NTP), recommended that six chemical compounds known as haloacetic acids (HAAs) be classified in the Report on Carcinogens as reasonably anticipated to be carcinogens. HAAs are byproducts created when chlorine, chloramine, or chlorine dioxide are used to disinfect drinking water.

Savings Through Efficient Products (STEP)

According to the U.S. Department of Energy, an average building wastes about a third of the energy it purchases. The Savings Through Efficient Products (STEP) self-install program allows public facilities to start saving money and energy right away without any upfront investment, while simultaneously learning about next steps in becoming more energy efficient.

Qualified Illinois public facilities receive both a free facility audit and free energy efficient products to start saving energy.

Airborne PCBs in urban and rural U.S. schools

Read the full story in Environmental Factor.

An NIEHS-funded study showed that polychlorinated biphenyls (PCBs) are present in older schools and that the likely source is outdated building materials, including window caulking and light ballasts. The multi-year study is one of the largest to examine airborne PCBs in schools.

Marek RF, Thorne PS1, Herkert NJ, Awad AM, Hornbuckle KC. 2017. Airborne PCBs and OH-PCBs inside and outside urban and rural U.S. schools. Environ Sci Technol 51(14):7853–7860.