Environmental Policy

Building Green
February 3, 2014 12:38 PM - ClickGreen Staff, ClickGreen

In a world which faces increasing pressure to reduce carbon emissions, the construction industry must confront demand to adopt modern methods of building which causes less damage to the environment. As a result, there are increasing numbers of alternative materials and methods available, a selection of which are included in this post. While these methods are by no means the only ones available within the industry, the selected materials and methods include: -Metallic paint -Chemical containment -Spray-on insulation -Concrete alternatives -Green roofs Each method boasts the more efficient properties in terms of reducing environmental damage, with the least change to standard methods.

EPA Releases Annual Climate Protection Partnerships Report
February 3, 2014 08:51 AM - Tina Casey, Triple Pundit

The Environmental Protection Agency has just released its annual Climate Protection Partnerships report, and it indicates that the U.S. is in a strong position to achieve economic growth – in other words, job growth – as it transitions to safer, healthier and more sustainable forms of energy. The report comes on top of great news for job growth in the solar industry, with as-yet untapped offshore wind energy and vast reserves of geothermal energy offering potential for even greater growth in the green jobs sector.

Why can't you walk to the big game?
February 1, 2014 10:31 AM - s.e. smith, Care2

Super Bowl XLVIII, featuring my archenemies the Seattle Seahawks against the Denver Broncos, is about to go down. Millions of fans will be gathering around TV screens across the country to watch, but of course the best experience of all is available to those who get to see the magic in person at MetLife Stadium. Better yet, organizers are touting this as the "greenest Super Bowl ever," with initiatives like composting, low water landscaping, Energy Star Certified equipment, donation of leftover food, a massive solar panel installation, and the use of recycled steel in construction. In other words, you'd think these guys are pretty serious not just about sports, but also the environment, with all this hard work to make the match as eco-friendly as possible. We're seeing the same kinds of initiatives in Sochi for the Winter Olympics, as well as Rio, indicating that in the sports world, green is in. Which is exciting news for those of us who like the Earth and think it should stick around in habitable form a little longer.

Solar Energy is cash and sunshine in your pocket
January 30, 2014 09:48 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Is there money to be made on your roof? With the never-ending availability of sunshine and the evolution of solar technology many are recognizing the benefits of solar. The decision making process though is not for the faint of heart. Recognizing the difficulty in breaking through the process a company called Generaytor out of Tel Aviv has developed a free web-based app to show how much money can be saved and made with rooftop solar panels.

Slowing down the floodwaters
January 29, 2014 10:41 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

Putting something called "Natural Engineering" to work in a five-year research project, Newcastle University in cooperation with the Environment Agency are discovering the benefits utilizing the land's natural defenses to slow river flow downstream and prevent flooding. Slowing down water in anticipation of flooding events is being tested all over the world. Strategies include the use of retention basins; wetlands development; levee systems and floodwalls but Newcastle University researchers directed by Dr. Mark Wilkinson are employing additional water retention strategies further up in the catchment system. The Belford Burn is a small catchment system located in Northumberland, a community just south of the Scottish border.

Flood insurance increases delayed in Senate
January 28, 2014 11:45 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

The floodgates have opened on the legislative debate surrounding flood insurance. On Monday, followed by remarks by Senator Robert Menendez, D-NJ, the Senate voted 86-13 to begin debate to delay the increases mandated by the 2012 law for four years. Proponents of the Homeowner Flood Insurance Affordability Act say that the price of coverage is too high for many policyholders making their homes unaffordable. Fifty five percent of Americans live within 50 mile of the coast. The National Flood Insurance Program insures more than 5.5 million properties across all 50 states. Rate increases affecting premiums all over the country. Proponents say that while The 2012 Biggert-Waters law was intended to make the flood insurance program fiscally solvent, it forces changes that are far too large and fast causing people to lose their homes. Menendez acknowledges, "The flood insurance program needs to be put on a more solvent trajectory, (but) we first need to understand the scope of these changes and be sure the mapping process used to set these rates is accurate. We need to understand the impact that these dramatic changes in Biggert-Waters will have on the housing market before it's too late.

Linking Alzheimer's to environmental contributors
January 28, 2014 09:16 AM - Robin Lally, Rutgers University

Scientists have known for more than 40 years that the synthetic pesticide DDT is harmful to bird habitats and a threat to the environment. Now researchers at Rutgers University say exposure to DDT, banned in the United States since 1972 but still used as a pesticide in other countries, may also increase the risk and severity of Alzheimer's disease in some people, particularly those over the age of 60.

UN - Business needs to play full part in tackling climate change
January 27, 2014 03:21 PM - UN News Center

Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon kept up the drumbeat for business to play its full part in tackling climate change and promoting sustainable development for a second day today, telling the World Economic Forum in Davos that investments now will generate major savings for tomorrow. "The finance community is a key player. We need trillions of dollars of investment to move from the brown to the green economy," the United Nations chief told a session on Climate, Growth and Development, citing four areas for action. "First, we need investors, banks and other financial service providers to increase finance flows into low-carbon energy and climate-resilient infrastructure, including through setting portfolio targets and increasing the deployment of climate bonds. Second, we need to decrease the flow of finance to carbon-intensive and obsolete technologies and business practices."

Control of the lion fish
January 24, 2014 09:32 AM - Robin Blackstone, ENN

A recent Oregon State University study shows that controlling the invasive lionfish in the western Atlantic Ocean is likely to allow for recovery of native fish. The lionfish is estimated to have wiped out 95% of native fish in some Atlantic locations. This Atlantic invasion is believed to have begun in the 1980s and now covers an area larger than the United States.

EV's only in city centers?
January 24, 2014 07:35 AM - Bob Sheth, Electric Forum

Should governments give serious consideration to electric car only city centres? Over the last 12 months the subject of electric car only city centres has been discussed on numerous occasions although so far no government has been brave enough to push through any formal regulations. The authorities continue to encourage the use of electric vehicles within city centres, assisting with creating a network of recharging stations, but perhaps they could be doing more? Only a few days ago we wrote about an expert in the field of electric vehicles who is suggesting that financial incentives should be focused towards commercial operations such as taxis and vehicle fleets. The idea is that taxis and vehicle fleets cover the most mileage per annum compared to your traditional motorist and therefore electric vehicles will be more visible under this particular strategy.

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