Day: April 27, 2018

Scott Pruitt Before the E.P.A.: Fancy Homes, a Shell Company and Friends With Money

Read the full story in the New York Times.

At the E.P.A., Mr. Pruitt is under investigation for allegations of unchecked spending, ethics lapses and other issues, including his interactions with lobbyists. An examination of Mr. Pruitt’s political career in Oklahoma reveals that many of the pitfalls he has encountered in Washington have echoes in his past.

Call for Applications for EPA Safer Choice Program 2018 Partner of the Year Awards

EPA’s Office of Chemical Safety and Pollution Prevention is seeking applications for the 2018 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards. These awards recognize the leadership contributions of Safer Choice partners and stakeholders who have shown outstanding achievement in the design, manufacture, promotion, and use of Safer Choice-certified products over the past year.

Applications for the 2018 awards are due to the Agency by June 27, 2018.

Awards will be presented in these categories:

  • Formulators/Product Manufacturers of both Consumer and Institutional/Industrial products;
  • Purchasers and Distributors;
  • Retailers;
  • Supporters (e.g., non-governmental organizations); and
  • Innovators (e.g., chemical manufacturers).

Award winners will be recognized at a ceremony in late fall of 2018.

Learn more about the 2018 Safer Choice Partner of the Year Awards and how to apply: https://www.epa.gov/saferchoice/safer-choice-partner-year-awards

Used Cars Full Of Used Electronics Set Sail For Nigeria

Read the full story from NPR.

Lower-income countries get a lot of old stuff from the U.S. and Europe. Used cars and buses and trucks, for instance, roll onto ships to be resold at their destination.

But you’d be surprised at what might be inside these vehicles. Two photocopiers plus two TVs can typically fit in a car. A bus might carry six to nine refrigerators, two to four washing machines, 20 TVs and maybe a few DVD players. A truck might hold up to 50 refrigerators and 50 TVs.

Inspectors are often oblivious. They routinely check containers full of used electronic equipment but usually do not check the inside of used cars. And that’s a potential problem. Because it is against the law to ship used nonfunctional electronic equipment to countries that don’t have safe facilities to dispose of any toxic waste from these products.

These Maps Show How Climate Change Will Mess Up The Weather Where You Live

Read the full story from Fast Company.

If you like the weather where you live, but are worried it’s not going to be the same as climate change wreaks havoc on meteorological systems, there’s now a way to know where you should be planning to move. The Climate Ex map shows the climatic similarities between different places, as well as the projected climate changes for those places over time. If you’re happy with the San Diego weather, you can see where will have the same characteristics 50 years from now.

Organic solar cells reach record efficiency, benchmark for commercialization

Read the full story at Science Daily.

In an advance that makes a more flexible, inexpensive type of solar cell commercially viable, University of Michigan researchers have demonstrated organic solar cells that can achieve 15 percent efficiency.

Pay-as-you-throw architect on how to ‘overcome the fear of change’

Read the full story in Waste Dive.

Right now in New York City, residents can set out as many trash bags for collection as they want each week. Ditto for recycling (though recycling should go in a marked bin or a clear bag, while trash should be in an opaque bag or in a cart).

It’s a service that residents don’t pay any extra for. And it’s a service that could change.

These Food Waste Innovations Show The Big Impact Of Small Changes

Read the full story in Fast Company.

The winners of a series of microgrants offered by the New York Department of Sanitation are helping to facilitate a more circular economy for the city’s food businesses.

Scientists create innovative new ‘green’ concrete using graphene

Read the full story in Science Daily.

A new greener, stronger and more durable concrete that is made using the wonder-material graphene could revolutionize the construction industry.

Why failing to recycle electronics leaves gold mines untapped

Read the full story at The Verge.

There’s 80 times as much gold in one ton of cellphones as there is in a gold mine, says Federico Magalini, an expert on electronic waste. That means there’s enormous potential for recycling — and yet, most of us keep our old electronics at home.

Lately, there’s been a lot of interest in old electronics. Last week, Apple debuted Daisy, a robot that disassembles old iPhones to recycle the materials inside. Reuters covered a South Korean factory that specializes in retrieving precious metals from car batteries. And in a recent paper published in the journal Environmental Science & Technology, researchers argued that recovering materials from discarded electronics — often called “urban mining” — makes more financial sense than mining for new materials from the earth. (Though sometimes, e-waste doesn’t end up where it’s intended.)

But what exactly is e-waste? Is it just phones and batteries? Where does our laptop go when we do recycle it? How much can we gain from recycling, and how is “urban mining” changing? To answer these questions, The Verge spoke to Magalini, an e-waste researcher who is also managing director at United Kingdom sustainability firm Sofies.

Walmart’s improved social responsibility efforts begin with supply chain

Read the full story in Supply Chain Dive.

Walmart notes several supply chain-focused efforts to improve it economic, social and environmental impact in its recently released 2018 Global Responsibility Report, revealing its commitment to meeting consumer expectations and eliminating abuses in the supply chain.

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