Midwest Climate Summit starts tomorrow

The Midwest Climate Summit is a series of virtual keynotes and workshops aimed at building partnerships, expanding engagement, and focusing efforts to accelerate climate action in the Midwest.

This Friday, October 9, University of Minnesota Institute on the Environment Director Jessica Hellmann and Heidi Roop, a new assistant professor of climate science and Extension specialist at the University of Minnesota, will speak on the future of extreme climate events in the Midwest. 

Register today

Ameren rejects Illinois regulators’ request, ends retail net metering for new residential solar customers

Read the full story at Utility Dive.

Ameren told the Illinois Commerce Commission (ICC) on Friday it is ending retail net metering for new residential solar customers, rejecting an Oct. 1 request from regulators to preserve the status quo as the process for determining if the utility can move to a different tariff works itself out.

The focal point of the struggle is whether distributed solar generation has now reached 5% of Ameren’s total system capacity, enabling the company, by law, to replace full retail net metering credits to owners of solar installations with a much lower distributed generation rebate. Ameren insists it has.

Solar installers say Ameren’s calculations are incorrect and that the sudden switch to lower payments for newrooftop solar owners will cripple the industry. In response to their plea for an emergency order, the ICC last week ruled Ameren could not lower payments to solar owners until the ICC staff audited the utility’s calculations.

DNR launches updated Georgia Birding & Wildlife Trails website

Read the full story from Savannah Business Journal.

Seeing wildlife while exploring historic sites along Georgia’s coast is easier and more engaging thanks to a new website and app features recently announced by the Georgia Department of Natural Resources.

The launch of georgiabirdingtrails.com and the addition of a trail function to the Go Outdoors Georgia app are part of DNR Wildlife Resources Division efforts to expand its Georgia Birding and Wildlife Trails program. The upgrades offer improved accessibility to wildlife viewing resources and support Georgia’s strong interest in birding and other wildlife watching, activities that pack a $2 billion annual economic impact statewide.

What ‘net-zero carbon’ really means for cities

Read the full story from the BBC.

A city historically known for its lethal 20th-Century smogs has committed to reaching net zero carbon emissions by 2050 – how will London get there?

Allbirds wants people to understand their sneakers’ carbon footprint like they do calories in food

Read the full story at CNBC.

Allbirds is labeling its shoes with their carbon footprint in the hope that other companies will follow suit and lead to a reduction in greenhouse gas emissions.

Climate change and carbon emissions are difficult topics for consumers to understand, compared to plastic pollution, which appears more tangible according to Allbirds’ sustainability lead Hana Kajimura.

The fashion industry contributed 4% of global greenhouse gas emissions in 2018, per a McKinsey estimate.

These carbon-negative, ocean-degradable straws and forks are made from greenhouse gases

Read the full story at Fast Company.

Newlight has developed a material—made by microbes—that uses methane to make everything from utensils to purses to glasses.

New publicly available water quality database contains information on 12,000 global lakes

Read the full story at Oceanographic.

York University (Toronto, Canada) researchers have created a free and publicly available water quality database containing information on close to 12,000 freshwater lakes globally – almost half of the world’s freshwater supply. The hope is that the database will help scientists monitor and manage the health of these lakes.

Associated journal article: Filazzola, A., Mahdiyan, O., Shuvo, A. et al. “A database of chlorophyll and water chemistry in freshwater lakes.” Scientific Data 7, 310 (2020). https://doi.org/10.1038/s41597-020-00648-2

How Kroger Battles Waste During the Pandemic

Read the full story at Progressive Grocer.

The battle against food waste continues during the pandemic, and fresh data from The Kroger Co. shows that many consumers have a high awareness of that issue.

A recent national survey of Kroger shoppers conducted by 84.51˚, the grocer’s data analytics subsidiary, revealed that food waste prevention is top of mind for many families as they continue to enjoy more meals together at home.

Smart meters giving Missouri customers incentive to save energy during peaks

Read the full story from Energy News Network.

Evergy and Ameren Missouri are both rolling out optional time-of-use rates to customers as they install smart meters.

Ikea, Unilever and BT spearhead net-zero supply chain initiative

Read the full story from edie.

Ikea, Unilever, BT, Ericsson and Telia are among the founding corporate members of a new initiative designed to help multinational supply chains align with the Paris Agreement’s 1.5C trajectory.