Labor Market Dynamics: Recession Impacts Men More Than Women

Many of the industries that have been hardest hit by the economic crisis are male dominated.  Construction and manufacturing are two prime examples. The U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics reported that 247,000 jobs were lost in the US during July, including 76,000 construction and 52,000 manufacturing jobs. The male unemployment rate is now 9.8%, while … Continued

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Coke and Pepsi on Damage Control – Cleaning up Their Water Image in China

Coca-Cola and Pepsi recently vowed to clean up their water use practices in China. Thing is, the vows weren’t exactly voluntary. Only after a Beijing economic council released a scathing report on the firms’ water practices did the soft drink firms swear to change. Moving forward, Beijing will monitor the firms, and 25 other companies, … Continued

Australia Breaks its Own Record in Renewable Energy Goals

Australia’s Parliament passed a law Thursday that set the country’s renewable energy goals for the next 11 years: the country must draw 20 percent of its electricity from renewable sources (for example, sun and wind) by 2020. Reaching the 20 percent goal would allow Australia to provide enough clean energy to power all 21 million … Continued

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American Petroleum Institute’s “Energy Citizens” Website Is Not a Pretty Picture

When it comes to combating climate change legislation, the American Petroleum Institute (API) plays dirty (pun intended). In its efforts to prevent the climate bill from passing, the API recently launched a website – “Energy Citizens” – which allows site visitors to e-petition legislators and speak out against the bill. (API’s launching of the site … Continued

Congress Seems to Prefer Close-to-Home Energy Research Centers

Apparently, home really is where the heart is – even when it comes to Congress’ distribution of energy research funds. When Energy Secretary Steven Chu proposed a plan for creating eight “innovation hubs” (i.e. clean technology research centers), Congressmen overwhelmingly favored earmarking funds for research schools in their home regions. The earmarking has many critics … Continued

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Seattle To Vote On Plastic Bag Tax

Seattle residents will vote on a 20 cent plastic bag tax on August 18. The tax would affect grocery, drug, and convenience stores. Small businesses, those with revenue under $1 million, would keep the entire 20 cent fee. Bigger businesses would keep five cents, with 15 cents going to Seattle Public Utilities to pay for … Continued

Chinese and North Carolinian Energy Companies to Pick Each Others’ Brains

North Carolina is on the move, from a renewable energy perspective. In the past several days, it has worked toward signing a technology-exchange agreement with China (and toward limiting the construction of industrial-sized windmills – a renewable energy quagmire, it seems). The Duke-China pact has gained significant international attention, as it is the first such … Continued

Slow Food USA Organizes Eat-Ins For Nutritious School Lunches

You have heard of a sit-in. On Labor Day, September 7, there will be 100 Eat-Ins in communities across the U.S. Organized by Slow Food USA’s Time For Lunch program, the Eat-Ins are designed to bring together people in a community who want more nutritious food in schools. The Child Nutrition Act, first enacted in … Continued

Senators Introduce ‘Efficient Vehicle Leadership Act of 2009′

Senators Jeff Bingaman (D-NM) and Olympia Snowe (R-ME) introduced a new bill Wednesday as a follow-up to the short-lived-by-design Cash for Clunker program. The bill, called The Efficient Vehicle Leadership Act of 2009 (S. 1620), would, the Senators claim, spur auto sales for the long haul by rationalizing incentives to buy fuel efficient vehicles. The … Continued

“Clean Coal” Advertising? Dirty Energy Lobbyists Resort to the Bizarre

Believe it or not, there are groups attempting to promote “clean coal” – an attempt worth parodying. The American Coalition for Clean Coal Electricity recently joined the ranks of such groups; it is preparing a series of ads designed to convince the Senate to vote against passing the climate energy bill. Does it really think … Continued

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Europe’s Impending Biodiesel Trade War?

Europe’s “Renewable Energy Directive,” which the European Commission adopted in June, appears to be creating waves. The Directive is intended to encourage increased production of renewable energy, including biodiesel fuels, by the European Union, thereby improving Europe’s economy while protecting the environment. However, while these goals are not mutually exclusive in theory, analysts believe the … Continued

Fewer Children Better for the Environment?

Are there too many obvious environmental impact reports being written? The question arises after reading a study out of Oregon State University, which points out that — get ready — having children increases your carbon footprint. The study, led by Paul Murtaugh, an OSU professor of statistics, shows that an additional child has an environmental … Continued