UN Shipping Group Moves on Vessel Emission Reductions

An International Maritime Organization panel adopted what it calls mandatory design and operational measures to reduce greenhouse gases from international shipping. According to the IMO’s Marine Environment Protection Committee, which has met 62 times on this issue, this month’s action is the “first ever mandatory greenhouse gas reduction regime for an international industry sector.” It … Continued


Solar Crowdsourcing: ‘One Nation Off the Grid’

In partnership with 175 solar power systems installers, One Block Off the Grid has launched its nationwide”One Nation Off the Grid” project, which includes offering group buying solar power systems deals at the county level across 34 US states, as well as a public US Solar Map detailing state renewable energy policies and potential job creation should stronger policies be enacted.


EPA, SEC Take the Lead on U.S. Environmental Progress

Businesses beg for definitive rulings on issues such as carbon pricing and environmental social governance (ESG) reporting requirements, meanwhile the legislature clamors (successfully) “drill baby drill” and accuses environmentalists of favoring spotted owls over jobs. Our leaders’ attitude seems to be climate change has to wait until the economy has turned around.


New Australian Carbon Tax Offers Comprehensive Model for All

Last Sunday the Australian Prime Minister, Julia Gillard, announced a new a plan to tax carbon emissions from the country’s 500 worst polluters. Starting next year, these companies will pay for each ton of carbon dioxide emitted, first through a fixed carbon tax and from 2015 via a carbon trading scheme. This plan came to … Continued


Southern California Edison’s Journey Towards the Smart Grid

The smart grid is getting more and more attention these days.  With all this talk, a few questions lingers in the mind.  What exactly is the smart grid?  When will we actually get the smart grid in place?  How smart can the grid really be? Recently, Southern California Edison (SCE) held a smart grid roundtable … Continued


Fare Trade: Lifetime Bus Pass for Your Car

For some a lifetime trolley-bus pass might sound like the third-place prize in a contest where $1 million goes to the first-place winner. Or maybe the wrong choice of doors in a Let’s Make a Deal episode. For urban dwellers it might be the economic incentive that gets unnecessary and polluting cars off of crowded … Continued

The Insurance Industry Can’t Afford to Have Their Heads in the Sand on Climate Change

…they only need to look as far as their own checkbooks to see that something very disruptive and damaging is happening. In 2005, in the aftermath of hurricanes Katrina, Rita and Wilma, damages reached 173 billion worldwide. Here in the US, damages from catastrophic losses cost the insurance industry $62 billion that year, up by 50% from the 1990’s. Back in the 50’s that number was only $4 billion. The number of reported natural disasters has been climbing steadily from around 70 in 1975, climbing into the two hundred range in the 80’s, to an average of around 400 over the past decade. The awakening of insurance executives to the fact that “something is happening here…” seems to be beginning with the re-insurance firms, those that insure the insurance companies that insure us.


British PM Announces That All Ministers Have to Fly Coach

One of the perks of working as a high level civil servant is getting to fly first class and stay in fancy hotels. However British Prime Minister, David Cameron has different ideas. It is a well known fact that flying first class comes with a steeper carbon footprint. Last year the British Foreign Office had … Continued


Is the “Light Bulb Ban” a Communist Plot?

If you’ve been paying attention to right wing media lately, then you’re well aware that a sinister communist plot is close to unravelling in Washington today. A supposed “ban” on incandescent light bulbs in the US is up for repeal – led by representative Joe Barton (R-TX). Voting may take place as soon as tonight. … Continued

corporations join federal Clean Fleets/Clean Cities initiative to reduce diesel pollution

Corporate Giants Add One Million Vehicles to National Clean Fleets Partnership

In a clear case of high bar-setting, earlier this year the U.S. Department of Energy kicked off its National Clean Fleets Partnership with a select group of official partners: AT&T, FedEx, PepsiCo, UPS and Verizon. The program aims to reduce diesel and gasoline pollution from fleet vehicles, and with these global A-listers on board others … Continued


Tea Party Opposes ICLEI and Sustainable Development in Cities

Today, ICLEI has more than 1200 local government members from 70 countries representing nearly 600 million people around the globe.  Members of ICLEI are committed to sustainable local development.

With such a mission, it’s not a huge surprise that the organization has come under fire from the Tea Party.


Introduction of the Safe Cosmetics Act Means that the Beauty Industry Must Shape Up

The policies for ingredient use in cosmetics have not been updated since 1938. Now with the Safe Cosmetics Act of 2011 the House of Representatives  may give the FDA authority to keep personal-care products free of chemicals linked to cancer, birth defects, neurological disorders, and other ailments. Cosmetic companies are required to fully disclose the ingredients used in their formulations according … Continued


Building Bicycle Infrastructure Creates Jobs, Studies Find

While the economy remains in the doldrums and job growth continues to stutter, the bicycle industry, at least, seems to have recovered from the woes of the recession. The National Bicycle Dealers Association details that in 2010, bicycle sales were up 15% over the previous year, bolstering the industry to $6 billion in annual sales. … Continued