Friday, May 31, 2013

Good update from Smart Way

Arpin Group, along with eNow, has been a proud member of Smart Way, the EPA program in the US.  If you are a carrier or if you ship anything, we hope you will support the Smart Way program and its members.  Here's a chance to read about them:

Up-to-date Logo   
EPA SmartWay and Partners to Highlight Efficiency Strategies at 2013 Alternative Clean Transportation Expo
Join SmartWay and our partners at the 2013 Alternative Clean Transportation (ACT) Expo in Washington D.C. June 24-27. We will present both an overview of the partnership and real-world case studies that focus on freight efficiency improvements Tuesday morning, June 25. Later that afternoon, SmartWay technology manufacturers will participate in a breakout session showcasing efficient new product offerings. Click here for more information. 
SmartWay and Retailers Collaborate to Make Supply Chain Greener
Buddy SmartWay's Buddy Polovick joined a panel with representatives from SmartWay partner Menlo Worldwide Logistics at the National Retail Federation's Global Supply Chain Summit earlier this month in Dallas. The panel examined how retailers are reducing their costs and liabilities through improvements in freight and warehouse management operations. Clickhere for proceedings from the conference. Photo Credit: NRF.  Leaf 
SmartWay "TIPS" Update
This week's SmartWay Trends, Indicators, and Partner Statistics ("TIPS") show the average payloads carried by SmartWay carriers across thirteen truck categories including: package, moving, LTL/dry van, mixed, TL/dry van, refrigerated, autocarrier, flatbed, dray, tanker, specialized and heavy/bulk. The average payloads carried by Class 6 and 7 trucks are also featured. Leaf 
ATRI Releases Large Truck Safety Trends Report
A report on safety trends across different classes of large trucks was released by The American Transportation Research Institue on May 29. Clickhere for a copy of the report. Leaf
New Texas Freight Efficiency Outreach Center Educates Truckers on Green Technology
Calling all truckers in the Texas area - the North Central Texas Council of Governments (NCTCOG), a SmartWay affiliate, is hosting a Grand Opening event for a new Freight Efficiency Outreach Center on Friday, May 31 at 1:00 pm. The new Dallas Center is the first of its kind in Texas and will serve to educate truck drivers on fuel- and emissions-saving technologies that have a positive impact on the region's air quaity. Click here for more information.  

Thursday, May 30, 2013

Sorry we missed yesterday

We have partners in from China (interesting week with the accusation of stolen designs on weapon systems), and we ran out of time last night.

We'll be posting a new radio show tomorrow.  In the meantime good article from Coalition for Green Capitol on the Solarize Connecticut program. We've heard great things about this expansion in CT.  Let us know if you live there and have used it:

Solarize CT Pilot

CEFIA is partnering with cities and towns across Connecticut to bring competitively priced solar photovoltaic (PV) systems to homeowners throughout the state.Solarize Connecticut (Solarize CT) is a pilot program designed to encourage the adoption of residential solar PV by deploying a coordinated education, marketing and outreach effort, combined with a tiered pricing structure that provides increased savings to homeowners as more people in the community go solar.

The Solarize Connecticut pilot is based on a proven residential aggregation model designed to bring down the cost of solar PV when residents sign up for a pre-selected installer’s offering. The more residents who sign up to install solar, the more the price decreases for everyone who participates. And because the installer, the technology and the exact price of PV are provided upfront, it is much easier for residents to make the decision to go solar.

The Solarize approach has worked extremely well in Oregon and Massachusetts, and with the guidance and support of the Massachusetts Clean Energy Center, theJohn Merck Fund, and SmartPower, we are excited to make it a reality here in Connecticut, as well. By lowering installed costs and increasing customer acquisition through community aggregation strategies such as Solarize Connecticut, financing can become integral to creating a long-term sustainable market for residential solar PV in Connecticut.

CEFIA plans to partner with four municipalities to implement the first phase of the Solarize pilot program in 2012 and four more communities as part of the second phase of the pilot in early 2013. The selection for all towns will take place through a competitive Request For Information (RFI) process, the forms for which are available via the links below. CEFIA will evaluate the performance of the pilot program in the hope of offering an expanded Solarize program for additional towns in the future. If you have any questions or concerns regarding Solarize CT, please do not hesitate to direct them to

Tuesday, May 28, 2013

Thanks to the Nature Conservancy

For keeping us up-to-date on living labs and the work being done there.

What you don't know will amaze you! More than three years in the making, new episodes of North America premiere every Sunday at 9/8c on The Discovery Channel. Go behind the scenes and see for yourself.

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Explore Living Laboratories Now

Your support gives Conservancy scientists the opportunity to test innovative ideas across the world. Donate today and your gift could be doubled!

Donate Today »
Dear Mr. Arpin,

You may have heard the words before, but what exactly is a living laboratory?

Wikipedia will tell you it's "a user-centered, open-innovation ecosystem," but to put it simply, it's a really cool place to study and test out really cool ideas in conservation.

Watch these short videos to see examples of how your donations are at work in our living labs and helping to make a big impact on global conservation initiatives:
When you make a donation today, your support will help The Nature Conservancy protect the most vital habitats on Earth and continue its work in living laboratories around the world.

Will you help expand the scope and scale of our conservation work? Donate today and your gift could be matched dollar for dollar!

On behalf of our staff and scientists across the globe, thank you.

Last week's radio show

Is now available 24/7 on WARL 1320 and Blog Talk Radio, Renewable Now channel:


Some information:

Learn how to manage your business better and cut your costs while maximizing your profits .

Join Peter Arpin as he will be visited by Joy Pettirossi -Poland . Joy is currently President and consultant of a company called Building Bridges 2012 LLC. Joy will share with us some of her knowledge in regards to the importance of sustainable business models and developments.

Learn why this is important for you and everyone in your business . Sustainable Business models help you manage your business better and cuts your costs .

Learn more today . Log on to building

Listen to Renewable now both on and on the renewable now channel. Renewable Now  is all about the business side of green .

Remember to be sure to listen to Renewable Now Radio  in it's new time slot 1pm to 2pm Wednesdays both on and on the renewable Now channel .

Thursday, May 23, 2013

Good update on EV's

Historic Milestone Expected on May 20, 2013

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif, May 17, 2013 - In a first for American transportation, the U.S. plug-in car market will pass a significant milestone this month: the 100,000th plug-in vehicle sold since the introduction of the latest generation of highway-capable plug-in vehicles just over two years ago. Plug In America, the leading voice for consumer adoption of plug-in vehicles, is commemorating the historic moment with an award contest and by launching a counter on its website that tracks EV sales. The counter is updated using sales data from the most recent published reports.
“Our current estimate, based on monthly sales figures from automakers, is that the 100,000th highway-capable plug-in vehicle will be sold on May 20," says Tom Saxton, Plug In America's chief science officer. "We are calling this the #PIA100K mark, and we are excited to see the continued growth of the market."
Highlights related to this historic moment:
  • Over a quarter-million people are exposed daily to the benefits of electric transportation
  • Nissan dealerships in some markets have reported that the Leaf has outsold all other Nissan models for particular sales periods this year
  • Tesla's Model S is outselling the Mercedes-Benz S-Class, the BMW 7 series and the Audi A8
  • Chevy Volt drivers alone have logged over 187-million electric miles
  • The plug-in vehicle market is approaching 48 percent annual growth with both Battery Electric (BEV) and Plug-in Hybrid (PHEV) vehicles finding growing interest
  • Plug-in vehicle adoption exceeds the adoption of hybrid vehicles over the same timeframe in their market developments
  • The domestic EV fleet now offers over 2,000 megawatts of battery storage, which may offer significant opportunities for the future management of our electrical grid and the increasing role of intermittent renewable energy sources
  • Manufacturers making EVs now include Nissan, Tesla, GM, Ford, Honda, Mitsubishi, Toyota, BMW, Mercedes, and Fiat. These plug-in cars have received a wealth of consumer and industry awards

Wednesday, May 22, 2013

Last week's radio show is now available 24/7 on Blog Talk Radio, Renewable Now channel

Here's the link:

Some information on the show

On Renewable Now this week!:  Join Peter Arpin and co host Jack Gregg  as they explore sustainability in the tourism and hospitality industries . Tedd Saunders  is the chief sustainability officer at Saunders Hotel group, and is  president of Ecological Solutions Co.  Saunders Hotels owns  The Lennox Hotel, in Boston . 
This show will help you look at your travel and hotel accommodations in a different way .
Be sure to visit to learn more about Tedd's work and what Ecological Solutions might do for you .
Remember to listen to Renewable Now Radio  in it's new time slot 1pm to 2pm Wednesdays both on and on the renewable Now channel .

Renewable Now is all about the business side of Green!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

New Environmentalism Means More Than Recycling

Good article from Wendy Fachon writing for EcoRINews that is a valuable lesson in looking back before moving forward.  We've given you part of the article with a link to the rest:

"How do we define civilization? How do we define economic development?

According to the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), watersheds with greater than 15 percent impervious surfaces start to suffer negative ecological effects. In 2004, impervious surfaces — buildings, driveways, parking lots and paved playgrounds — covered 29 percent of the Greenwich Bay watershed, according to a 2012 EPA report entitled “Imprint of the Past: Ecological History of Greenwich Bay.”

Rather quickly rain runs off hard surfaces instead of slowly sinking into the ground, where water is naturally filtered to recharge groundwater aquifers. This stormwater runoff carries bacterial waste, automotive oil and many other chemical pollutants to streams and rivers and eventually out into the bay. Vacant buildings and parking lots along Post Road through East Greenwich and North Kingstown are part of this problem, yet municipalities continue to permit developers to add more shopping plazas, office parks and housing developments.

What is required for our towns to shift focus from economic/land development to revitalization?

The EPA’s ecological history report looks back on five historic periods of economic development and its impact on Greenwich Bay ecology. The report urges us to turnaround and take a good, long look behind us. Through pre-Colonial times, Narragansett natives had a minimal impact upon the land, and more than 90 percent of Rhode Island was forested. During the Colonial Period (1650-1750), Europeans arrived and began clearing land for subsistence farming. Some researchers estimate that one-third of the watershed’s forested land was cleared by 1700 and two-thirds was cleared by the late 1700s.

The elimination of trees changed the stability and filtering ability of the soil, increased erosion and caused sediment build up in the bay..."

Monday, May 20, 2013

From Better World Club

We received this and thought we'd share it with you:

I don't mean to spread rumors, but I heard your friends call you a... tree hugger.

Not the first time, huh? Us neither.

Here at Green America, we celebrate all you do!

And like you, we believe 'living green' is more than a trendy phase - it's a way of life that inspires people to be healthier, do better, and feel connected.

Living in a way that is healthy for people and planet requires mindfulness - and is sometimes a little extra work. That's why Green America would like to treat you to a little TLC!

When you make a $15 tax deductible donation to Green America, we'll send you a FREE 'Cause I Care Package - the resources you need to make green living easy and FUN:

  • Fair Trade chocolate and coffee - thanking you for all you do for people and the planet!
  • Our organic cotton produce bag - carry this bag and proudly declare 'I am a Green American.'
  • 21 things you didn't know you could recycle - and other secrets to going green in our must-have wallet card.
  • The National Green Pages™ - a directory of thousands of green products from socially and environmentally responsible businesses. No greenwashing - guaranteed!
  • Green American magazine - your resource for practical and powerful green ideas. Don't miss our next issue 'Ten Steps to a Healthier Home!'
  • Guide to Socially Responsible Investing - we'll help you make smart financial decisions that are in line with your values.
For more than 25 years, Green America's mission has been helping people like you find products from green businesses that you never even knew existed... learn new ways to reduce your impact on our environment... and boycott corporate criminals who are jeopardizing our world.

So please join more than 150,000 other 'tree hugging,' conscientious individuals who want to create a more just and sustainable world.

Friday, May 17, 2013

Last week's radio show

Has been putting up great numbers on Blog Talk Radio,  Renewable Now channel, and WARL 1320, and we'd like you to listen as well.  Here's a description on what you will hear:

On Renewable Now , Peter Arpin ,Seth Handy and Todd Dahlstrom of Calvert funds will talk to  Jules Freeder.  Jules is a expert at Calvert and we'll look at the  importance of water as a commodity to sustaining our economy as much as sustaining our lives
Learn more about Green investing ,log on to
Renewable Now is all about the Business side  of Green.

Thursday, May 16, 2013

Rhode Island Aquaponics A Home Aquaponics Experiment

We've been talking about Aquaponics on the show, and thought this would be a good model for you to look at and get familiar with what is going on in the new world--even home unit--of sustainable food production.

In the early days of Aquaponics and hydroponics, there was great skepticism on the quality of the fish--thinking they, too, would suffer, as does cattle, from a lack of space and exercise.  However, the current data suggest the quality is excellent with no deprivation due to smaller spaces.

You will see and hear a lot more--pros and cons--right here as we follow the story and the technology:

Wikipedia defines aquaponics as:  Aquaponics (pronounced: /ˈækwəˈpɒnɨks/) is a sustainable food production system that combines a traditional aquaculture (raising aquatic animals such as fishcrayfish or prawns in tanks) with hydroponics (cultivating plants in water) in a symbiotic environment. In the aquaculture, effluents accumulate in the water, increasing toxicity for the fish. This water is led to a hydroponic system where the by-products from the aquaculture are filtered out by the plants as vital nutrients, after which the cleansed water is recirculated back to the animals. The term aquaponics is a portmanteau of the terms aquaculture and hydroponic.

Do’s and Don’ts of choosing fish for Home Aquaponics
  1. Let your tank fully cycle (2 weeks should be perfect) before adding fish.
  2. Get your water fully tested both prior to adding fish and on an ongoing basis once the tank is stocked.
  3. Buy your fish from a reputable pet store .
  4. Choose a hardy breed (I am now using comet goldfish – good size and seem to be pretty strong.
  1. Forget to rinse your Hydroton prior to adding to grow bed – failure to do so will hurt your fish and make your tank VERY cloudy.
  2. Forget to account for heat loss from grow bed, for a 20 gallon tank you might need a 40 gallon heater.
  3. Buy “feeder fish” on the cheap – these fish are usually packed into tight confines and come with *FREE* diseases.
  4. Pick anything too frilly or pretty – your girlfriend might like them today but she will cry when you flush Nemo in a few days.

Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Great performance from an EV

How would you like to earn a top score in Consumer Magazine?  How about one of the highest scores ever?

After you read this, let us know if you still think hybrids and EV's can't compete with traditional cars:

Tesla Model S gets top score

An electric sports car from an American startup earns the highest score ever from Consumer Reports.

By the Editors of Consumer Reports

There, we said it. The Tesla Model S outscores every other car in our test Ratings. It does so even though it's an electric car. In fact, it does so because it is electric.
(Note: Consumer Reports has no relationship with any advertisers on MSN.)
Built from the ground up as an EV, this car's overall balance benefits from mounting the battery under the floor and in the lowest part of the body. That gives the car a rock-bottom center of gravity that enables excellent handling, a comfortable ride, and lots of room inside. Plus, it has a front trunk where other cars' gasoline engines would be, in addition to its large rear cargo space. This big luxury hatchback even seats seven, with its optional third-row jump seat.
Inside, the car looks like something Marty McFly might have brought "back from the future" in place of his iconic fusion-powered DeLorean. A giant 17-inch touch screen glows in the center of the dashboard, controlling everything from high-res Google Earth maps to opening the sunroof, setting the responsiveness of the regenerative brakes, and adjusting the suspension ride height. In all, the Model S worked better than we expected — especially being the first home-grown model from a brand-new car company.
The electric motor delivers impressive power, right now, and it is impressively efficient. The Model S uses about half the energy of a Toyota Prius every mile, and it has more than twice the range — about 200 miles — of any other electric car we've driven. Still, you'll have to plan ahead for longer trips; you won't be taking it on a spontaneous jaunt from, say, New York to Cleveland any time soon. You won't make it. Even with Tesla's optional High Power Wall Connector, it takes about five hours to charge. On a standard 240-volt electric-car charger, it would take about 12 hours.
Tesla does provide some ability to make long trips in the Model S — as long as they're the right trips. Up and down California, from Los Angeles to Las Vegas, and between Boston and Washington, D.C., the company has set up a network of Supercharging stations — with free electricity — that can refill the battery halfway in a half hour. (To charge more than that at such speed takes longer and would damage the battery.)
All this comes at a price. We paid $89,650 for our Model S, with the biggest available battery, the most seats available, and the fastest available optional chargers. Then we still had to pay another $1,200 for Tesla's High Power Wall Connector. But operating costs are a little more than half that of a frugal Toyota Prius.
So is the Tesla Model S the best car ever? We wrestled with that question. It comes close. And if your needs are confined to the Tesla's driving range, it just may be. But for many people, the very thing that makes cars great is the ability to jump in and drive wherever you want on the map at a moment's notice. And on that measure the Tesla has its limitations. So the Model S may not satisfy every conceivable need, but as we've learned through our testing and living with it, the Model S is truly a remarkable car.

Monday, May 13, 2013


This was sent to us by Autubon and we are happy to share it with you.  Let us know what you think:

Like the monster that doesn't die in a bad horror movie, the General Assembly has reintroduced the bill to take local zoning from your community.  
Last year this was the "dry lands bill" and it was defeated, thanks to your help.  
Now its call the Steep Slopes Bill. AND, this is no bad horror movie...this bill will force denser development as your town's plats are changed from farm, field and forest to house lots.  
We urge you to contact your state representative to OPPOSE this bill. 
Denser housing development, where it is not planned by State Guide Plan or wanted by local zoning, is about to be legislated.   
On Tuesday, May 14th the House will again try to pass this bad bill for the environment.   That means, even if your town or city wants certain zoning requirements...the legislature is about to take that right away from you.    
Please make a phone call, email, text, fax, your State Representative as soon as possible... like today...before tomorrow afternoon.    

Thursday, May 9, 2013

Thanks to Greg Gerrit

For a very interesting report on climate change possibly pushing the jet stream into a new weather pattern.  Here's the link and there is some information below:

Weather patterns around the globe are getting weirder and weirder: heat waves and record snow storms in Spring, blasts of Arctic air followed by sudden summer, record deluges and then drought. Climate change due to fossil fuels emissions has risen the global temperature by 0.8 degrees Celsius (1.4 degrees Fahrenheit) in the last century, impacting our climate and therefore our weather.

But recent research has shown how climate change may be having an additional impact on weather patterns, at least in the northern hemisphere. Rapid warming in the Arctic and sea ice melt may be weakening the jetstream, creating a more meandering, slower-moving jetstream. Such a shift brings unseasonable weather patterns (both hot and cold) to the northern hemisphere, and causes these weather patterns to last longer than usual.

A new video describes the mechanics of the shifting jetstream through a presentation by Jennifer Francis with the Institute of Marine and Coastal Sciences at Rutgers University.

For more on this phenomenon:Extreme cold linked to climate change, say scientists


The Orion Project

Thanks to Joy Pettirossi-Poland, MS for sending us information--which we want to share with you--on The Orion Project.

We'll bring you details over the next few days.   We'll start with their overview and mission.  What interest us, of course, is their ability to step out of the box, as did The Venus Project, and look for new, undiscovered, scientific solutions to our current energy and environmental issues:

The Orion Project is an organization created to transform the current energy, environmental and social crisis into a world of sustainability and enlightened abundance.
Technological progress in the areas of advanced physics and electromagnetic systems, if appropriately supported, will enable humanity to live on the Earth with a minimal footprint with genuine long-term sustainability.
For over 100 years, these advanced concepts in energy generation have either been ignored or actively suppressed due to the power of fossil fuel based economic and industrial interests.
Imagine a world where every home and village has its own clean source of electrical energy, free from the cost of fossil fuels, nuclear power or a centralized electric grid.
Imagine every means of transportation running off of clean power plants, using no source of fuel and creating no pollution.
Imagine the developing world blossoming with these new technologies and the equatorial rain forests protected from slash and burn subsistence farming and logging.
Imagine all inter-city transportation above the ground and the millions of acres paved over with highways freed for productive agriculture and recreation.
Imagine all manufacturing being clean-fuel sourced, using no-cost or low-cost energy.
Imagine the possibility of 100% recycling because the energy cost of transporting recycled materials, processing them and scrubbing pollution out of the air and water approaches zero.
This is no mere pipe dream, but a world that is well within our grasp to create and do so in our lifetimes. Imagine... and see that it is a reality.

The Orion Project is dedicated to:
  • Supporting the world's most accomplished engineers, physicists, and inventors who have developed innovative solutions to energy generation.
  • Cleaning up the fossil fuel power sources currently in use.

Wednesday, May 8, 2013

Push Back to Chafee's Canadian Hydropower Plan

This is an interesting study of one state grappling with their purchase and mix of renewable energy.

RI has a pretty robust clean energy program, and that program is expanding again, with any luck, this year.  An interesting twist, added to solar, wind, local hydro, is the proposal to import large quantities of hydro from Quebec.

We've discussed this on the radio show, and plan to devote a full hour to it soon.  In the meantime this is a good job by Tim Faulkner, ecoRI News, of detailing the pros and cons of following the Governor's lead on this.

Let us know what you think:

By TIM FAULKNER/ecoRI News staff

PROVIDENCE — Two issues stood out when the Environment Council of Rhode Island (ECRI) delivered its annual legislative priorities April 30 at the Statehouse — hydropower and oversight of the state Department of Environmental Management (DEM).
Overall, ECRI, which represents most of Rhode Island’s environmental groups and advocates, is focusing on eight “priority” environmental bills as the General Assembly nears the end of the 2013 session.
“We act as a voice for sound environmental policy and law,” ECRI president Tricia Jedele said.
Gov. Lincoln Chafee made a strong push for the Energy Reform Act of 2013 and his desire to add a large segment of hydroelectric power from Canada to Rhode Island’s energy mix. A multi-state purchasing agreement of hydropower will deliver plentiful and inexpensive renewable energy, he said.
“We have a chance to make this region the green-energy capital of America," Chafee said.
ECRI and other environmental groups worry that an influx of Canadian hydropower will slow efforts to expand wind, solar and other renewable energy projects in Rhode Island. Delivering a mass of electricity from Canada also requires a costly expansion of the transmission system, they said.
New power lines, such as the proposed Northern Pass project, could threaten open space across New England. The flooding caused by the construction of new dams in Canada also harms the environment and releases greenhouse gases, opponents said.
ECRI wants all references to Canadian hydropower dropped from the Energy Reform Act.
Chafee said Rhode Island and other states don’t have the patience for other renewable energy projects to produce cheap electricity. “Governors are getting a little exasperated with the price of wind and solar,” he said.
He also insisted that there wouldn't be a need for new transmission lines and that the hydro energy would be excluded from the state distributed generation program, which sets aside electric generation for local renewable energy projects.
Flooding caused by new dams wouldn't significantly alter the environment, he said. “If they’re going to build dams, this is a good place,” Chafee said of the unpopulated northern region of Canada where new dams are being proposed.
Rep. Art Handy, D-Cranston, sponsored the Energy Reform Act. Hydro energy, he said, is worth considering because it could even be cheaper than natural gas. “I put the bill in to have control over the process," he said.
The General Assembly is turning its attention to a realignment of state government to promote economic development. A package of House bills would put the DEM under the oversight of a new Executive Office of Commerce. The concept was put forward by the Rhode Island Public Expenditure Council last fall to improve the state's economy. Opponents say it could weaken environmental protections.
“The economy is inextricably linked to the health of our environment,” Jadele said.

This week's radio show on WARL 1320 and Blog Talk Radio/Renewable Now channel

Thanks to Seth Handy and Pam Gordon for their help in recording, which is now available 24/7, a great show this week.  Below is the description and link to the show.
On this episode of Renewable Now:  
Join Peter Arpin and Seth Handy of Handy law , as they speak with Pam Gordon on creative ways for business to fight E-waste and save money. 
Pam Gordon is the founder of a company called Technology Forecasters Inc and a co-developer of the Design for the Environment program . Technology Forecasters Inc ,provides strategic advice and marketing insights for optimizing manufacturing relationships and achieving profitable environmental strategies to clients . 
We are  the business side of green!"

Tuesday, May 7, 2013

Bee deaths linked to pesticides

We've been reporting on this very issue on the radio side--here's a link to one of the shows-- we are happy to share this link to NBC's report on other possible causes of colony collapse and the onslaught facing honey bees.

As stated in this story, this is a huge environmental and social issue and concern.  Let's hope the world turns its attention quickly to finding a solution and protecting honey bees and our future food supply.