Day: April 11, 2018

Where Are the Solar Jobs? New Resource Can Tell You

Read the full post from the Union of Concerned Scientists.

A new tool from The Solar Foundation breaks down the latest solar jobs numbers by state, metropolitan area, county, and congressional district, and looks at who makes up the solar industry. Here’s a taste of what those numbers say, and why they matter.

The interactive map, available at, slices and displays the solar census data for 2017 in a range of ways.

How to Ensure a Seat at the Table: Three Tips from Dennis Hu

Read the full story at Environmental Leader.

Environmental managers – increasingly charged with not just implementing sustainability initiatives but with ensuring those initiatives boost the bottom line – are becoming more involved in shaping a company’s overall strategy. These executives play an important role in accomplishing their organizations’ business goals, Dennis Hu, director of EHS for Ball Aerospace, told Environmental Leader. “As a result, how they interact and collaborate with C-level executives is important and vital,” he said.

A new app listens to the problems of bees

Read the full story in The Economist.

You might expect to hear an angry buzzing when honeybees have been disturbed. But some apiarists reckon they can also deduce the condition of their bees from the sounds they make. A steady hum could be the sign of a contented hive; a change in tone might indicate that the bees are about to swarm. That intuition is about to be put to the test. Soon, beekeepers will be able to try to find out what is troubling a colony by listening to the buzz using a smartphone app.

This blockchain startup is hungry to address the grocery industry’s food waste dilemma

Read the full story in GreenBiz.

The fact that anywhere between 33 percent and 40 percent of all food grown is actually wasted presents both a huge sustainability challenge and a tremendous opportunity for new efficiencies throughout the distribution system.

During the recent GreenBiz 18, a panel consisting of manufacturers, retailers and NGOs agreed that the situation could be vastly improved with better information flow, coordination and tracking — things that technology can easily handle, if applied systemically.

INS Ecosystem, a startup created by the founders of Russian grocery delivery service Instamart, hopes to address that opening with software designed to help consumable goods sell directly to consumers more efficiently. The system, scheduled for a limited launch in late 2018, uses blockchain to manage transactions and to underpin a token system to fulfill orders, adjust prices and offer rewards.

New York State: Environmental Education Lesson Plans

The New York State Department of Environmental Conservation offers this extensive collection of lesson plans for K-12 science educators. These lesson plans were designed by DEC environmental educators for classroom teachers as well educators who work in other educational environments. In particular, these materials may appeal to those who work in nature centers, after-school programs, or nature camps. Visitors can browse this collection by grade level: grades pre-k – 3; grades 3 – 6; and grades 6 – 12. These lesson plans, worksheets, and activities address a range of topics including animals, soil erosion, recycling, aquatic science, wildlife conservation, and more. All materials are available for download in PDF format. [Copyright © 2017 Internet Scout Research Group –]

Research shows wood pallets are recycled at a very high rate

Read the full story at Pallet Central.

Over the past year and a half, NWPCA has been engaging with Virginia Tech and the USDA Forest Service on two cooperative research projects, with the aim of collecting survey data related to the wooden pallet industry (Industry Market Survey), as well as the prevalence and disposal of wood pallets at landfill sites (Landfill Avoidance Survey). Both projects have been performed in the past, providing an opportunity to analyze the results in a historical context.

Researchers from Virginia Tech presented the results of the two studies during the NWPCA 2018 Annual Leadership Conference in March. In this article, we’ll summarize the major findings of the studies. The results of these studies will be submitted to peer reviewed journals for publication, and NWPCA will be informing PalletCentral readers of their availability for reference.

Opinion: Automated vehicles can’t save cities

In her op-ed for the New York Times, Allison Arieff encourages us to rethink transportation so that we prefer modes that move the greatest number of people.


How journalist Dan Egan wrote the life (and death) story of the Great Lakes

Read the full story from PBS.

Our April pick for the PBS NewsHour-New York Times book club, “Now Read This” is Dan Egan’s “The Death and Life of the Great Lakes.” It’s an epic and wonderfully told story of history, science and reportage about the largest source of freshwater in the world, and the threat to America’s waterways. Become a member of the book club by joining our Facebook group, or by signing up to our newsletter. Learn more about the book club here.

Dan Egan likes to say that he may be the only journalist in America whose beat is the Great Lakes. A daily reporter for the Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, Egan reports on everything from invasive species to oil spills to algae blooms. Much of that work — reported for the paper over the course of a decade — made itself into “The Death and Life of the Great Lakes.”

Below, Dan Egan shares more about his inspiration for the book, including his daily writing routine, favorite childhood book and the best bit of writer’s advice he’s ever received. He also shares where he thinks the most interesting and overlooked stories can be found — in your local paper. Here are five questions with Egan, in his words:

Study: Flood control engineering on the Mississippi likely has worsened floods

Read the full story in the Southern Illinoisan.

Flood control work in the Mississippi River and its tributaries has likely made floods worse in Mississippi and Louisiana, researchers say.

Another Place Plastics Are Turning Up: Organic Fertilizer From Food Waste

Read the full story from NPR.

Tiny particles of plastic are showing up all over the world, floating in the ocean, buried in soil, in food and even in beer. Now there’s new research that’s found microplastics in fertilizer — organic fertilizer from food waste, in fact…

Writing in the journal Science Advances, the team reports finding plastic in fertilizer made from food waste from both households and commercial sources. These are small particles, fractions of an inch, that result from the composting or “biodigesting” processes that turn organic waste into fertilizer.

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