Greenerbuildings.com has a great new case study on papermaking firm Stora Enso. Spurred by a Wisconsin state initiative, the company has reduced energy consumption (electricity and gas) enough to save the company a whopping $3.5 Million annually, with additional savings expected in the future. An additional PDF press release is available from Focus on Energy.
BRICs – An acronym for “Brazil, Russia, India and China” refers to the emerging combination of economic power weilded by those four nations. An outstanding analysis on Z+Partners weblog sheds some light on the growing influence of this bloc of nations, the rise of potential conlicts with the G7 group, and various environmental scenerios. A key quote:
Perhaps the prospect of a massively destabilizing and massively expensive competition for oil with the BRICs will be the tipping point the finally pushes the U.S. toward a true green energy revolution.
The San Deigo Union Tribune reports that San Diego is considering a mandatory deposit be charged on construction and demolition projects. The money would be returned to contractors if waste materials are properly documented and dealth with. The idea is to create financial incentive to recycle, but opposition exists:
Contractors call it premature. Government watchdogs want an audit of the city’s recycling fund before backing a new fee. Business leaders said it is a stealth tax that will scare residents away from applying for building permits.
Greenbiz reports today that “Walmart has committed $35 million over the next ten years to conserve at least one acre of priority wildlife habitat for every acre developed for company use.” I’m not sure if that includes parking lots, and it certainly dosn’t include the impact of Walmart’s suppliers, but with an estimated 138,000 acres of wild land scheduled to be conserved by the program, it’s very significant. More information on the “Acres for America program” can be found on the NFWF website.
Natual Logic’s Sustainable Business Declaration of Leadership has been updated, and even has it’s own domain: declarationofleadership.com. Gil Friend tells 3p: “PDF downloads are free; 100% recycled hard copy posters suitable for framing, hanging in your office, or giving to your boss, are now available for purchase”. A discussion space for people putting the declaration into practice is in the works. (more info on the website)
SC Johnson Company has published a new “greenlist” (link here) which will hold the company to a higher standard of toxin reduction in products and production. It’s a perfect example of a company going beyond what is required by government regulation to position itself in a leadership position.
Some might cry greenwash at this type of publication, especially coming from a privately held company that deals mostly in chemicals, but SC Johnson has a longstanding forward-thinking reputation in areas across the board.
Thousands of megawatts of new renewable energy potential in Africa, Asia, South and Central America have been documented through the multi-million dollar project, the Solar and Wind Energy Resource Assessment (SWERA). SWERA is an assessment that includes data on wind and solar energy potential, plus detailed country energy analyses in 13 partner countries.
According to United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP) Executive Director Klaus Toepfer, SWERA is good example of international cooperation that can produce positive environmental and social outcomes, saying “as energy planners seek cleaner energy solutions using renewable energy technologies, the availability of reliable, accurate and accessible solar and wind energy information is critical and can significantly accelerate the deployment of these technologies.” Check out the article from the Environmental News Services
The Rose Foundation for Communities and the Environment has released a new report geared toward helping companies find ways to make their products and production less toxic. Part of the incentive is to respond to growing regulatory preasure,
But there are good business reasons for substituting safer chemicals in products. Such shifts present a remarkable opportunity for competitive advantage, reduced operating costs, increased profits, and enhanced shareholder value.
A condensed PDF is downloadble here.
The Alameda County lock-up in Dublin, CA boasts one of the nation’s largest solar electric sustems, a 1.2 MW array on the sprawling rooftops of the jail complex. The system connects to the local grid, relieving the community, most notably, of peak hour costs in the middle of sunny days. From Renewable Energy Access: “By avoiding purchases of expensive peak electricity, it is anticipated that the combined solar generation and energy efficiency measures will generate $15 million in net savings for Alameda County over the next 25 years.” (via Sustainablog)
By now, you may have noticed that crosswalk signals have gotten a lot brighter, and a lot whiter. At the same time, traffic lights have have become pixelated and more clear. It’s all part of the LED revolution that’s sweeping cities and companies alike, saving energy and huge amounts of money in the process.
By replacing old traffic signals with LED powered signals, the NYC borough of Queens alone is saving over $600,000 a year, and other cities (and their taxpayers) are enjoying similar cost savings. Companies too, can enjoy the benefits by replacing traditional bulbs in places like hallway lighting, hotel reading lamps, and aircraft cabins. Enviropundit points us to more. There is also a discussion going on at Treehugger.
According to World Business Council for Sustainable Development, two thirds of the world’s population will be living in water-stressed countries by the year 2020, and all sectors must work together if businesses expect to have continued access to the water they need to operate. Their most recent report, Collaborative Actions for Sustainable Water Management, outlines steps businesses can take—along with other stakeholders—to address the issue of sustainable water management. Learn more at the report website or download the 24 page report here.
GreenBiz and the EPA’s ENERGY STAR program have collaborated to produce the first report showing the irrefutable link between a company’s energy management strategy and higher shareholder value. In addition, the report looks at how financial analysts and institutional investors have come to understand this energy-value connection, and how energy management is becoming a stronger measure by which to assess a company’s overall investment value. Download the official report here
Sustainable Business Leaders Network is a new resource for people interested in sustainable leadership roles. That’s probably you, if you’re a Triple Pundit reader. The site features articles, discussions, and job listings, plust a couple great PDF reports on Hewlett Packard and Xerox. Check ‘em out.
There is a growing concern by land owners in rural areas regarding Wind Farms being too large and taking up too much space.
David Suzuki, writer for New Science Magazine says it is time for some perspective, “With the growing urgency of climate change, we cannot have it both ways. We cannot shout from the rooftops about the dangers of global warming and then turn around and shout even louder about the “dangers” of windmills.” Read entire article
In slightly better taste than the Vice Fund, the Free Enterprise Action Fund purports “to seek long-term capital appreciation through investment and advocacy that promote the American system of free enterprise”. Their premise is that CSR is an anti-business threat tainted with “leftist” agendas. Are they on to something, or is this a reactionary blip against a much stronger tide of conscientious business? Anita Green of PAX makes the counterpoint that CSR’s roots are in the church, “not exactly a bastion of liberalism”… (more on Morningstar)
This is definitely a topic worthy of further discussion – click the “discuss” link under this post to join in.