Kroger funds ideas from startups to reduce food waste

Read the full story at Progressive Grocer.

The Kroger Co. Zero Hunger | Zero Waste Foundation is doubling down on its  commitment to end hunger and food waste by launching an open call to its second innovation fund. Eligible innovators with ideas and solutions to prevent food waste can submit an application by April 1 for business support and funding totaling $2.5 million in collective grants.

Upcycled food is the next frontier in recovering and repurposing food that may otherwise go to landfills, encouraging the reintroduction and reuse of food items into the supply chain. Applicants can submit proposals that promote a business model that requires sourcing surplus food or food byproducts and manufacturing them into new consumer-facing products.  

After this open call, the foundation — in collaboration with Village Capital, which helps entrepreneurs bring big ideas from vision to scale, and the fund’s advisory committee — will review the applications and select 10 startups. Each startup selected for the fund’s second cohort will receive $100,000 in upfront seed-grant funding, totaling an initial $1 million investment. Then the grantees will participate in a virtual workshop focused on investment readiness, technical skill development and networking with a community of investors and mentors in and around the food system. The second cohort will have exclusive access to the foundation and Village Capital’s leaders and partners, as well as the option to apply for follow-on funding.

Biden Urged to Back ‘Bold, Reparative’ Water Justice Bill

Read the full story at Common Dreams.

President Joe Biden is being called on to back newly reintroduced legislation that seeks to remedy the nation’s drinking water injustices with boosts to infrastructure and the creation of a water trust fund.

Pay gap widens between female and male scientists in North America

Read the full story in Nature.

Permanent positions in US and Canadian industry and academia pay men higher wages than women.

The one that got away: Researchers retract fish genome paper after species mix-up

Read the full post at Retraction Watch.

A group of researchers in Canada has retracted their 2018 paper on the gene sequence of the Arctic charr — a particularly hearty member of the Salmonidaefamily that includes salmon and trout — after discovering that the sample they’d used for their analysis was from a different kind of fish.

There’s an invisible climate threat seeping from grocery store freezers. Biden wants to change that.

Read the full story from the Washington Post.

Some of the climate impacts of a grocery store trip are obvious, like the fuel it takes to get there and the electricity that keeps its lights glowing, conveyor belts moving and scanners beeping. But then there are the invisible gases seeping out into the atmosphere when you reach for your ice cream of choice.

In nearly every supermarket in America, a network of pipes transports compressed refrigerants that keep perishable goods cold. Most of these chemicals are hydrofluorocarbons — greenhouse gases thousands of times more powerful than carbon dioxide — which often escape through cracks or systems that were not properly installed. Once they leak, they are destined to pollute the atmosphere.

The Biden administration now sees eliminating these chemicals from the nation’s refrigerators as low-hanging fruit in its broader effort to rein in climate pollutants. The Environmental Protection Agency issued a public call last week for companies to report production and import data on HFCs…

new undercover investigation by an advocacy group suggests that some supermarkets are leaking climate-damaging refrigerants at an even higher rate than regulators have assumed. The industry estimates that every year supermarkets lose an average of 25 percent of their refrigerant charge — chemicals introduced in the 1990s to replace ones depleting the Earth’s ozone layer.

Michaud selected for U.S. Department of Energy grant to investigate utility-scale solar

Read the full story from Ohio University.

Gilbert Michaud, assistant professor of practice at Ohio University’s Voinovich School of Leadership and Public Affairs, has been selected as a co-principal investigator on a $1 million grant from the U.S. Department of Energy Solar Energy Technologies Office.

The project, “Mapping and Bridging Barriers in Knowledge Flows of How Solar Photovoltaics Affect Rural Community Economies,” will study information flows regarding utility-scale solar projects in rural communities in the Great Lakes region. The project will also investigate the adoption of zoning policies, as well as quantify the economic and workforce impacts of utility-scale solar in rural areas. 

Southern Illinois bird enthusiast’s interest turns into conservation activism

Read the full story in the Southern Illinoisan.

When I came to Southern Illinois in 2000, Vicki Lang-Mendenhall had already been here 20 years and was an established birdwatcher and conservation advocate. And although I had probably met her briefly before, at a local bird club meeting or something, the first time I really remember seeing her was in Washington, D.C.

I was at the capital in my capacity with The Nature Conservancy and Vicki was there advocating for the Crab Orchard National Wildlife Refuge’s Friends Group. We literally bumped into each other in the hallway between visits to local representatives.

Vicki is a great example of someone who, without a “professional background” or agency affiliation, is still making important contributions to science and conservation.

Russian academics decry law change that threatens scientific outreach

Read the full story in Nature.

Researchers say that a proposed amendment could impede collaboration with foreign speakers and scientific literacy.

Covid-19 Cut Gases That Warm the Globe But a Drop in Other Pollution Boosted Regional Temperatures

Read the full story at Inside Climate News.

A new study shows how tiny aerosol particles from industrial emissions have an outsized cooling effect.

New mix could double concrete’s carbon uptake

Read the full story from Purdue University.

Concrete is not glamorous. It is the workhorse of building materials: versatile, durable, and almost universally ubiquitous, with 30 billion tons of concrete produced every year. Cement, a component of concrete, produces 8% of the world’s carbon footprint.

Looking to lower that percentage, Purdue University engineers have discovered a way to make concrete more sustainable. Their new recipe for concrete has the potential to cut carbon emissions dramatically, creating building blocks for a better world.