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Friday, June 29, 2012

Thank you for the kind comments

We've been getting on the blog, TV and radio show.  We love the feedback and invite you to send us suggestions on content, guests and story ideas.  Also, feel free to submit blog material to us, and we'll give credit to you and your organization.

Here's the information on this weekend's TV show:

We will have an update on the radio side for next week, and we have some good stories to post this weekend.

Also, as a follow up to our tour in East Providence, RI, it looks as if the City has agreed to some of the terms and conditions with the developer, and the project should be ready to move ahead.  It is one of the bigger projects to get approved under the new legislation in RI.

We'd love to hear more about renewable energy projects in your state or country, and will be looking at similar deals around the world.

Thursday, June 28, 2012

Listen to Positive Energy Moving Forward WARL  - 1320 AM Providence, RI

 Catch us, too, on Blog Talk Radio, Renewable Now Network.  Lots of shows achieved there and available 24/7.  All new shows post permanently on Blog Talk, RN network, within 24 hrs of running live. 

Listen to Positive Energy Moving Forward WARL  - 1320 AM Providence, RI

Monday, June 25, 2012

A gift born in 1927/writer Max Ehrmann

"Go placidly amidst the noise and haste, and remember what peace there may be in silence. As far as possible without surrender be on good terms with all persons. Speak your truth quietly and clearly; and listen to others, even the dull and the ignorant; they too have their story.
Avoid loud and aggressive persons, they are vexatious to the spirit. If you compare yourself with others, you may become vain or bitter; for always there will be greater and lesser persons than yourself.
Enjoy your achievements as well as your plans. Keep interested in your own career, however humble; it is a real possession in the changing fortunes of time.
Exercise caution in your business affairs; for the world is full of trickery. But let this not blind you to what virtue there is; many persons strive for high ideals; and everywhere life is full of heroism.
Be yourself. Especially, do not feign affection. Neither be cynical about love; for in the face of all aridity and disenchantment it is as perennial as the grass."
Take kindly the counsel of the years, gracefully surrendering the things of youth. Nurture strength of spirit to shield you in sudden misfortune. But do not distress yourself with dark imaginings. Many fears are born of fatigue and loneliness.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars; you have a right to be here.
And whether or not it is clear to you, no doubt the universe is unfolding as it should. Therefore be at peace with God, whatever you conceive Him to be, and whatever your labours and aspirations, in the noisy confusion of life keep peace with your soul. With all its shams, drudgery, and broken dreams, it is still a beautiful world. Be cheerful.
Strive to be happy.


Together, we can make it a more beautiful, sustainable world.  Do your part.  Today, by even a very small amount, improve your ecological standing in the world.  Your contribution will play a part in the success, including financial, success of our planet.


The planet, too, strives to be happy.  Invest in clean.

Sunday, June 24, 2012

Thanks to Seth Handy

One of my radio co-host for sending an excellent new post:  Here's the link:  http://www.sustainablebusiness.com/index.cfm/go/news.display/id/23802


Some of the story:  

Renewable Energy Can Supply 80% of US Electricity

SustainableBusiness.com News
"Renewable energy can supply 80% of US electricity demand by 2050, concludes a report from the National Renewable Energy Laboratory (NREL), theRenewable Electricity Futures Study (RE Futures).
The technology needed is available today and is "more than adequate" combined with a more flexible electric system.
That increased electric system flexibility, necessary to balance supply with demand, can be met by a portfolio of flexible conventional generation, grid storage, new transmission, more responsive loads, and changes in power system operations.
The abundance and diversity of US renewable energy resources, such as geothermal, solar, wind and wave energy, can support multiple combinations of renewable technologies that result in deep reductions in electric sector greenhouse gas emissions and water use.
All regions of the US could contribute substantial renewable electricity supply in 2050, consistent with their local renewable resource base.
"While this analysis suggests such a high renewable generation future is possible, a transformation of the electricity system would need to occur to make this future a reality. This transformation, involving every element of the grid, from system planning through operation, would need to ensure adequate planning and operating reserves, increased flexibility of the electric system, and expanded multi-state transmission infrastructure, and would likely rely on the development and adoption of technology advances, new operating procedures, evolved business models, and new market rules," the report says."
Our experience has been very affirming of this conclusion--with deep reductions in energy use, through efficiency, and the improved capacity of renewable sources, particularly the amazing output increases coming out of the solar side, we can very quickly move off fossil fuel sources.  And, as we've pointed out, the economic benefits of stopping the flow of oil into this country, and the flow of dollars out of this country, dollars that stay and invest in jobs and companies at home, is the next great industrial revolution that historians will talk about as a huge game changer in a 100 years.
Tomorrow, we will post a link to last week's radio show that spanned from e-waste recycling to the amazing role honey bees play in our world's food source and economy.   Stay tuned.

Thursday, June 21, 2012

Two good stories from EcoGeek



"When we first heard that the Empire State Building was going to be retrofitted for energy efficiency, we were stoked. Such an iconic building could be a great proving ground for showing building owners big and small the huge benefits of making these types of upgrades and has it ever..."


Very simply, investing in efficiency has a great ROI.  Here's very big and perfect example.


Now, here's a surprising story and data:  




"Digital delivery of content for e-readers is a rapidly expanding market. Many assume that, because trees aren't being cut down and used to maufacture paper for books, e-readers (including the Kindle, Nook, iPad, and the like) are a greener way to read books and magazines. But a broader look at the use of these devices that includes the life-cycle of the e-readers themselves paints a much bleaker picture about how green they really are..."


We will focus a show on this soon.

Wednesday, June 20, 2012

Radio Broadcast of Renewable Now

Hope you listened live today on either WARL 1320 or Blog Talk Radio, Renewable Now network.

We will post the show tomorrow on Blog Talk so it is on-demand 24/7.  We'll get you the link to the show tomorrow.

Tuesday, June 19, 2012

Finishing up with Worldwatch Institute

We started profiling some of their articles and blogs that focus on food supply and its lifeline into any society.  Today, we look at one of their recent books that strikes to the "business side of green":  Latest in flagship series offers strategies for lasting well-being.
ISBN: 978-1-61091-037-8
To purchase State of the World 2012 in e-book format, please go to the Island Press book page
In 1992, governments at the Rio Earth Summit made a historic commitment to sustainable development—an economic system that promotes the health of both people and ecosystems. Twenty years and several summits later, human civilization has never been closer to ecological collapse, a third of humanity lives in poverty, and another 2 billion people are projected to join the human race over the next 40 years. How will we move toward sustainable prosperity equitably shared among all even as our cities strain to provide decent jobs, housing, transportation, and social services, and as our ecological systems decline?
To promote discussion around this vital topic at the Rio+20 U.N. Conference and beyond, State of the World 2012: Moving Toward Sustainable Prosperity showcases creative policies and fresh approaches that are advancing sustainable development in the twenty-first century. Chapters written by international experts present a comprehensive look at current trends in global economics and sustainability, a policy toolbox of clear solutions to some of our most pressing environmental and human challenges, and a path for reforming economic institutions to promote both ecological health and prosperity.
Moving Toward Sustainable Prosperity is the latest publication in the Worldwatch Institute’s flagship State of the World series, which remains the most recognized and authoritative resource for research and policy solutions on critical global issues. State of the World 2012 builds on three decades of experience to offer a clear, pragmatic look at the current state of global ecological systems and the economic forces that are reshaping them—and how we can craft more-sustainable and equitable economies in the future. 
We look forward to sharing more of their material with you.
Tomorrow, we preview our live radio show and introduce you to two very interesting organizations.

Monday, June 18, 2012

World Wide Institute: Vision for a sustainable world

Very nice site, great information.  We read a terrific piece they did on sustainable agriculture locally and abroad and how to fix the food system, which is key, of course, to economic and human survival.

Here's the first segment, and we'll finish it up tomorrow on an article we found on their site that dovetails very nicely with our beliefs...that being, proper use and disposition of natural resources is the absolute key to our future well being--environmentally and economically.  We can, and must, get our hands around transforming to clean energy, composting of food scraps, proper construction and de-construction of buildings, a focus on cleaning rivers and oceans, and a long-term solution to balanced growth through out the world.

We will carry more briefs from the World Wide Institute, and look forward to having them on our TV and radio shows:  "The Need:


Each year, roughly one-third of the food produced globally for human consumption is wasted, according to the United Nations Food and Agriculture Organization. Across industrialized countries, this amounts to 222 million tons of edible food wasted annually, nearly equivalent to the 230 million tons of food produced per year in sub-Saharan Africa. The United States alone wastes nearly 40 million tons of food annually, enough to adequately feed the approximately 925 million undernourished people in the world.


Uneaten food doesn’t just mean wasted opportunities to feed millions of hungry people, and wasted resources used to produce that food. It also contributes to climate change. Rotting food produces methane, a greenhouse gas that is more than 20 times as potent as carbon dioxide. Food in landfills accounts for 34 percent of the total methane produced in the United States alone. Ultimately, this quantity of food waste is unacceptable if we wish to feed and sustain a global population of more than 7 billion people.


Our Response:


The Worldwatch Institute aims to help address the global hunger challenge by compiling a comprehensive e-publication on food waste and its broader implications. Our extensive research on food waste has been featured prominently in print media including the Arizona Republic, Baltimore Sun, Calgary Herald, Chicago Tribune, Cleveland Plain Dealer, Des Moines Register, Die Zeit (Germany), Global Post, Houston Chronicle, Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, TIME Magazine, and USA Today. Danielle Nierenberg, director of Worldwatch’s Nourishing the Planet program, has been interviewed frequently on the topic by National Public Radio..."

Wednesday, June 13, 2012

Good news on Saab

This from Bloomberg:  

Saab Gets New Life As Electric Vehicle Manufacturer

SustainableBusiness.com News


"In an interesting development, bankrupt automaker Saab is being sold to a group that will convert the brand into an electric car manufacturer, reports Bloomberg.

The new manufacturer, National Electric Vehicle Sweden, plans to offer the first vehicle for sale in China in 2013-2014, although manufacturing will be in Sweden at Saab's plant.

"We're striving to be a world-leading company for electric cars," says Mattias Bergman of National Electric Vehicle Sweden. "It's not only about China being a big market for electric cars, it's also about China having the ability to make the investments required and build the needed infrastructure."
Who bought Saab? Hong Kong-based National Modern Energy Holdings Ltd., which builds high efficiency biomass plants in China, and Sun Investment, a Japanese investment firm that focuses on high tech projects with environmental solutions. About six other firms made offers.
National Modern Energy owns 28 biomass power plants and develops technology for wind power, efficient energy storage and biofuel boilers. The company employs 7000 people.
Sun Investment, which is owned by private investors, banks and businesses, finances outstanding Japanese technology for high performance sustainable solutions, they say. It supports development of green technologies, such as renewable energy, energy storage and recycling. It wants to bring electric vehicle technology to the world market.
They plan to build on Saab's "long and proud history of sophisticated design and innovation and use it a a foundation for electric vehicles."
Bergman says they want to unite Swedish manufacturing and design skills with Japanese advanced technology and China's progressive initiatives in sustainable transportation solutions.

The electric car will be a new design based on Japan's cutting edge technology.
They see electric vehicles as crucial because China's oil demand would exceed world production if the country reached US vehicle penetration levels.
Saab hasn't been profitable for almost 20 years. GM bought the company in 2000 and sold it in 2010 to a Dutch carmaker. It filed for bankruptcy last December. "

We applaud more investment in EV's, and love seeing the once proud Saab name grace a new generation of innovative cars.  We wish them the very best success.

Woonsocket Banks on Recycling

Great follow up to our Woonsocket shows, and a nice profile on Recyclebank:
By DAVE FISHER/ecoRI News staff
WOONSOCKET —" What if you could earn credits at local and national retailers by doing something that you are already doing? And if you’re not doing it, it’s easy enough to start. All of the necessary components are right there in your yard. A simple online registration, and you’re putting credit in your Recyclebank.
Recyclebank, founded in 2004, is a social enterprise venture that, stated simply, rewards people for doing the right thing. Three million Recyclebank users in the United States and United Kingdom earn points through simple actions like recycling that can be redeemed for discounts and other offers from local and national stores and e-commerce sites such as Home Depot, Dunkin' Donuts and e-Bay. If your community is participating in the 2012 Recyclebank 50 State Challenge, simply putting your recycling on the curb can earn points.
Normally, it would cost the city $40,000 a year to participate in Recyclebank, but through a grant from Waste Management, Woonsocket’s contracted waste hauler and partner in Recyclebank, the city has received a free two-year membership and, beginning July 2, local residents will have the chance to compete with 49 other cities and towns across America in the challenge. The contest will run through Dec. 31 and the winning community will receive $100,000 from Recyclebank..."
We will work to get them on a future show.
Also, listen in today to WARL 1320 AM, and their stream site, along with Blog Talk Radio/Renewable Now as we go live from 12-1p with Grow Smart's John Flaherty and talk about "smart streets".  
Then, listen on-demand, 24/7, on Blog Talk Radio for this and other segments.


Tuesday, June 12, 2012

Welcome to the Clean Economy, Inc.

Arpin Group, and Renewable Now, to help launch, and introduce, a brand new clean energy fund that we expect, within 3 years, to be seeding up to 25m of renewable energy projects per year.

This Fund will quickly grow past the RI and New England borders into many states.  It is being headed up by the former manager of the RIEDC Fund here, Julian Dash,  that underwrote 80 successful deals, and will continue to seed many more.

Here's Julian's introduction.  Please contact us if you have interest in working with the Fund as a customer--investing in efficiency and renewables for your company or organization, small and large, or as an investor in the Fund:

Clean Economy, Inc.




As many of you already know, Friday June 1st was my last day at the RIEDC as the Director of the State's Renewable Energy Fund.

I decided to leave the RIEDC in order to pursue a new clean energy fund, which will focus on the finance, development and management of both renewable energy and energy efficiency projects.  This new venture will fill a void in the clean energy marketplace, particularly as it relates to providing solutions to challenging yet high-impact projects - particularly small business, non-profit and public entities seeking to reduce their energy use/costs in the state.

I truly enjoyed my tenure at RIEDC, where I was afforded the opportunity to invest in great projects, companies and initiatives, while also shaping the state's overall energy policy.  I was part of a team of talented and committed professionals at the RIEDC, whom I expect will continue to deliver high-quality results for the state.

For years I've had one of the best jobs one could have in this field.  I have been involved just about every renewable energy transaction in the state and have overseen the growth of our program and the policies that support it.  However, it has been in this role that I've identified gaps in our clean energy marketplace - gaps that I intend to fill with my new venture.

For those of you have (or are thinking of undertaking) renewable energy and/or energy efficiency projects and have the need for project financing and/or development management expertise, please contact me, as we would love to be part of making your project a success.
 
For those interested, you can hear more about our new venture on the "Renewable Now" | Blog Talk Radio:

http://www.blogtalkradio.com/renewable-now/2012/06/08/renewable-energy-fund#.T9JNwp3i5lI.email
 
 I look forward to working with all of you in the future, 

Monday, June 11, 2012

We continue, from Sunday: New green reality about jobs, lifestyle

We started this blog over the weekend and finish it today.
This came from our friends in Canada.  The last line is of keen interest to us:  "Welcome to a new green reality. It's about lifestyle, it's about jobs. And, plainly, it looks like the environment movement, as we knew it, is taking a back seat."
We agree the green movement has to be about jobs as much as ecological protection.  We think there needs to be a real balance struck between the two.  We do not want to stand in the way of commerce, people working, economies sustaining.  However, we also believe such economic activity can co-exist with preserving our world, and we can create a new industrial revolution that does not end in waste, congestion, dirty air and rivers.
Tell us what you think.
"...Yes, Ottawa seems to be dropping the environmental ball. For evidence of that, one only has to look at the looming C-38 omnibus bill which, if passed, would rewrite several environmental laws.
But it's not just the government. Grassroots concern for traditional environment causes seems to be waning, as well.
It certainly seems that Canadians have decided there are more important fish to fry these days - such as coping with daily ongoing economic woes. Proactive support for the environment appears to have lost much of its in-your-face passion and zeal.
Yes, there was an Internet protest this week, coinciding with Canadian Environmental Week, where 500 factions, including green advocates, church and social justice groups, political parties, First Nations and private companies, blacked out their websites for one day.
The online campaign, dubbed Black Out Speak Out, saw the participants - listed on the group's website at www.blackoutspeakout.ca - state that "our land, water and climate are all threatened … proposed changes in the budget bill will weaken environmental laws and silence the voices of those who seek to defend them."
A quick scan of the list, by the way, did not show direct involvement of any web portals in Brantford or Brant County.
So the websites involved "went black" on June 4. And an accompanying online petition fighting against the proposed Bill C-38 had over 50,000 signatures as of mid-week.
But, unlike a few years ago, there does not seem to be any real outrage brewing; no take-to-the-streets cry to protect the environment. Instead, there's a petition, and it doesn't take much effort to add one's name with a single click of the mouse.
What speaks volumes, however, is the general community apathy; the lack of positive, publicized activities and events surrounding Canadian Environmental Week.
Welcome to a new green reality. It's about lifestyle, it's about jobs. And, plainly, it looks like the environment movement, as we knew it, is taking a back seat."
PS:  Thank you for all the recent posts and kind words.  Keep reading and offering your feedback.

Sunday, June 10, 2012

Blog Talk Radio/Renewable Now

We do a live show every Weds on Blog Talk and WARL 1320, 12-1p, EST.   We hope you get a chance to listen in to last week's episode, with Cavlert Investments and Julian Dash and the new renewable energy Fund, at  the below link:

 http://www.blogtalkradio.com/renewable-now/2012/06/08/renewable-energy-fund#.T9JNwp3i5lI.email


Also, WARL will repeat the show this Weds.


Also, this just came to us from our friends in Canada:  Green Matters:

New green reality about jobs, lifestyle



Here's part of the article from the BRANTFORD-BRANT:

"In case you missed it - and chances are you did - we are now wrapping up something Environment Canada has dubbed Canadian Environment Week.
Unlike the annual Earth Week initative, which has managed to maintain a relatively substantial public profile locally, you would be hardpressed to find any mention close to home about Canadian Environment Week.
According to the Environment Canada website - you can Google Canadian Environment Week - June 5-11 is "a time for grassroots action to help preserve, protect, and restore our environment … we can all make a difference by taking simple steps to build the future we want by ensuring our environment is clean, safe and sustainable."
The website has a link to a Facebook page and encourages Canadians to organize corresponding green events and activities and share ideas.
However, as one wag on the Facebook page posted: "Someone from Environment Canada might want to update this event for 2012, if they expect us to believe that anyone in government really cares any more...."
We'll bring you more tomorrow.   






Friday, June 8, 2012

Update from Sierra Club

We, as everyone knows, is a big proponent for EV's, and we are happy to share this from Sierra:

Next up on our blog:  Information on this weekend's new TV show.


Cutting Oil Use in Half

Offshore drilling
Our friends at the Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) have outlined an excellent plan to reduce U.S. oil consumption in half by 2035 by taking clear, achievable steps. Given that half of the oil that we use in the U.S. powers our cars and trucks, this is the area where we can accomplish the greatest gains.
UCS estimates that if we make a concerted effort to ramp up electric vehicle (EV) production and sales, we could cut U.S. oil use by nearly 1.5 million barrels each day by 2035 and nearly eliminate oil from cars and light trucks by 2050. But the dream of an oil-free driving society will take work. We need to educate the public about the benefits of this new way of powering our vehicles, install EV charging stations in strategic public locations, and insist on government and auto industry investment in improving EV technology and accessibility.
UCS also describes the road toward cutting oil use among commercial vehicles, planes, trains, ships, and buildings. Additionally, the new fuel economy and emissions standards, set to be finalized this summer by the Obama administration, will nearly double our fuel efficiency from today to 2025. But this won't get us all the way there. We need to accelerate our support of next generation biofuels, help building owners switch to more efficient boilers, and demand that large vehicle fleet owners accelerate a transition to cleaner vehicles.
Of course, getting people out of their cars and onto trains, buses, bikes, and their own two walking feet will help us slash oil use too. But these cleaner transportation choices will not magically appear without our collective voices calling for programs that add bike lanes, increase transit funding, and increase mixed-use development that encourages people to live, work, and shop in easily accessible areas.
Slashing our oil use won't be easy, but it is do-able, and it is crucial. The oil we're using is increasingly risky and dirty as we drill deeper and further. We also know that oil that comes from the Canadian tarsands is toxic, threatens our drinking water, and leads to much higher global warming emissions than is generated by traditional oil production. To understand this better, check out this great, short video just released by my Sierra Club colleagues and narrated by TV star Joshua Jackson who explains why "the world's dirtiest oil isn't welcome here."
--Gina Coplon-Newfield, Sierra Club's Director of Green Fleets & Electric Vehicles Initiative

Thursday, June 7, 2012

Yesterday's radio show with Calvert Investments and The Clean Energy Development Group


Yesterday, on WARL 1320, we had a great conversation with these two groups, one well established international, the other new and, right now, local, on sustainable investing.  When you get a chance, go to Blog Talk Radio, get on the Renewable Now channel, and listen to a great show.

For more on Calvert Investments, visit their site at:  http://www.calvert.com/

Also, contact their representative, who helped us invest in Calvert, as we like to put our money where our mouth is, at:

Thomas J Sheehan 



Senior Financial Advisor
Senior Vice President
ONE FINANCIAL PLAZAPROVIDENCE,  RI  02903
Phone: (401) 278-7057
Email:  Thomas J Sheehan
Direction to Branch
PROFESSIONAL STAFF
Katie Ranney(401) 278-7054Reg Senior Client Associate
PROFESSIONAL PROFILE
Thomas Sheehan
Financial Advisor
Senior Vice President-Investments

The focus of our business is providing for our clients and their families the sound financial advice that they require through constant communication and personal service. 
We work primarily with corporate executives and business owners along with their accountants, attorneys and other essential partners to understand their unique needs in growing and preserving wealth. The open architecture platform we have at Merrill Lynch allows us to provide customized strategies and continuous supervision to ensure that all of our clients’ goals are recognized and achieved. Our internal and external partnerships allow us to deliver the highest quality investment research along with superior technology to provide the best of services and solutions in every instance.
We do all of this efficiently and effectively such, that each of our clients would be proud to recommend us to their family and friends. 
We will have more on the Clean Energy Development Fund this week.

Tuesday, June 5, 2012

From Seth Handy of Handy Law

Seth is one of my co-host and is a lawyer specializing in environmental law.  He is a regular contributor to this blog.

We hope you find this interesting.  At Arpin Group, energy efficiency, and using renewable energy, is a very big part of our corporate culture.  It has helped us drive down operating costs, and has given us a great return-on-investment.

IT is also a big part of our branding and an important element of our green initiatives.  Our focus on getting more efficient in facilities, fleets and operations has served us well, and will do the same for you.

Let us know what you think of the webinar.  

U.S. Department of Energy, Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy, Advanced Manufacturing Office

Tuesday Webcast for Industry: Making Energy Efficiency a Part of Corporate Culture


Join us for a webinar on June 12

Space is limited. Reserve your webinar seat now at:
www1.gotomeeting.com/register/393745809
Effective energy management can help companies control costs, improve environmental performance, and boost competitiveness – operational imperatives that a growing number of top companies have been pursuing. Since 2006, Nissan's Energy Management Team has been committed to "the development of a comprehensive, measurable energy management program to reduce the energy burden, cost, and risk in the manufacturing of all its products." They have championed the cause of energy awareness at the company, with their industrial peers, and in their facilities' communities. As such, Nissan believes that to be successful, it must actively engage its employees in energy management practices. In this webcast, Ken Roden, Energy Team Facilitator, and Mike Clemmer, Director/Plant Manager-Paint & Plastics, will discuss strategies companies can employ to successfully cultivate a corporate culture of energy efficiency built upon an employee-driven energy management system and sustained employee engagement.
Title: Making Energy Efficiency a Part of Corporate Culture
Date: Tuesday, June 12, 2012
Time: 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM EDT
System Requirements
PC-based attendees
Required: Windows® 7, Vista, XP or 2003 Server
Macintosh®-based attendees
Required: Mac OS® X 10.5 or newer

Sunday, June 3, 2012

On World Environment Day, New Book Points to Food and Farming as Key to Protecting the Environment

Home

We've been watching their work for awhile, and we love their focus on food and food production as key to the world environment, health and economy.

Here's a great piece they published on May 31.  It's long--we will run it over two days.  When you can, go to their site to learn more about their work.


"New book illustrates how food insecurity, malnutrition, obesity, and cultural disconnection plague the global agricultural system and demand solutions from around the world.
Washington, D.C.—Worldwide, 30 percent of food is wasted, 1 billion people go to bed hungry each night while another 1 billion suffer from health problems related to obesity, and agriculture contributes to one-third global greenhouse gas emissions. Meanwhile, young people are increasingly disconnected from how their food is grown, making solutions to the global agricultural system seem even further out of reach.In response to these problems, the Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition (BCFN) is releasing a report, Eating Planet,highlighting the challenges facing today’s food and agricultural system, as well as the myriad benefits that reform could bring. As World Environment Day approaches, it is important to appreciate the linkages between technology, culture, and agriculture, and how they can alleviate hunger and poverty.
“Access to food is one of the first and most fundamental of all human rights,” says Guido Barilla, Chairman of the Barilla Group. “Where food is lacking, it becomes impossible to live with dignity, and the rights to a healthy life and peaceful coexistence are undermined.”
The Worldwatch Institute’s Nourishing the Planet project, an evaluation of environmentally sustainable solutions to alleviate hunger and poverty, collaborated with BCFN to produce the report. “The study’s conclusions represent a major step toward ensuring that agriculture contributes to health, environmental sustainability, income generation, and food security,” said Nourishing the Planet project directorDanielle Nierenberg. “The ingredients will vary by country and region, but there are some key components that will lead to healthier food systems everywhere.”
The report is divided into four sections: Food for All, Food for Sustainable Growth, Food for Health, and Food for Culture. Each of these sections ends with concrete recommendations, proposals, and actions that need to be taken to solve the global food crisis.
Food for All:Agriculture offers a crucial opportunity for effective investments in development. Because agriculture plays such a large role in rural populations in developing countries, growth in this sector is at least twice as effective in boosting incomes as growth in a non-agricultural sector. Agriculture also directly contributes to food security among the world’s poorest populations, and reforms to the sector are badly needed to reduce both poverty and hunger. These include reinforcing the mechanisms of global governance, such as curbing the trade of food-related stocks to lessen price volatility; encouraging the use of new approaches and tools to measure and promote well-being, in part by shifting away from Gross Domestic Product as a primary indicator of national development; and fostering eating habits that are healthier for humans and have a lower environmental impact.
Food for Sustainable Growth: While many agricultural activities, such as artificial fertilizer application or heavy pesticide use, may boost food production in the short term, they create serious obstacles to feeding the world over the long term. Environmental degradation, including water scarcity, soil depletion, and deforestation, are all results of the industrialized agricultural system, and these problems seriously compromise future generations’ prospects of well-being. Part of achieving sustainable well-being involves an understanding of the environmental impacts of different types of foods. To facilitate this understanding, the Barilla Center for Food & Nutrition has devised the Double Food and Environmental Pyramid. This pyramid, a new take on the traditional food pyramid, links the nutritional aspects of different types of food with their environmental impacts, to promote environmentally conscious and responsible food choices."
That first stat is stunning:  30% worldwide is wasted.  How?  Why?  How much does that translate into lost dollars?
We'll bring you more information tomorrow.
Also, this week we film six new shows, and will be live on WARL 1320 and Blog Talk Radio Weds (every Weds), 12-1p, EST, talking about sustainable investing with Calvert Funds, and others.  Please call or write in with your comments and questions. 

Saturday, June 2, 2012

Counting your carbon footprint

From the Better Better World Club; take a look and try it:
Top Story
Wipe Up Your Carbon Footprints With Our New Carbon Calculator

It's a Better Response to Climate Change Than Buying a Bunker in Wyoming
 

Now We Feel Silly For Hoarding All Those Canned Beans

After a quest that made Frodo's journey to Mordor look like a trip to the grocery store, we have overcome the dark forces of CO 2 to bring you... this. It's an online tool that takes a few facts about your car and turns them into a precise calculation of your total yearly emissions. That might sound more depressing than exciting, but, as they say, the best is yet to come. Our calculator also lets you choose to offset all or part of your harmful emissions, right there on the spot. 

How does our offsetting work, you ask? We partner with the Greater New Bedford LFG Utilization Project, which diverts the gas formed by landfill decomposition (a 50/50 mix of methane and CO 2 known as landfill gas or LFG) for use as fuel in four specially-designed generators. The generators provide power to the local electrical grid. This process reduces the amount of LFG in the atmosphere and, at the same time, reduces the use of electricity made from fossil fuels.