White Roof Project: Cools NYC One Roof At A Time

Urban cities are hot. They are full of heat-trapping tar, pavements and dark surfaces that absorb heat and increase ambient temperatures. This is called the Heat Island Effect and is responsible for increased urban temperatures compared to adjoining suburban areas. According to the EPA- black surfaces in the sun can become up to 70°F hotter than the most reflective white surfaces. The effects of the Urban Heat Island are obvious- higher energy use to cool this excess heat that leads to higher stress on the power grid and increased pollution. On a clear night, the temperature in a city with 1 million people or more can be up to 22°F hotter than nearby suburbs. One initiative in New York City is helping cool it down- by painting roofs white!

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Ecopreneur Interview Series: five Accessories

Part 11 in a series where Krates Ng (co-founder of Mokugift the ecard service) interviews fellow ecopreneurs.  Today, Krates interviews Christine Hutchinson, founder of Five Accessories. Five Accessories offers eco and fair trade unique designer handbags & wood jewelry from FIVE countries. 1) Why did you start your company? We were on our honeymoon in Bali when we stopped so I could admire handbags and jewelry made by local women. It was there I Made Kichen, a Balinese man, told us…

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Ecopreneur Interview Series: mod.skin labs

Part 7 in a series where Krates Ng (co-founder of Mokugift the ecard service) interviews fellow ecopreneurs.  Today, Krates interviews Raffaele Ruberto, founder of mod.skin labs.  Mod.skin labs produces effective solution for impeccably beautiful skin and hair…naturally. 1) Why did you start your company? Working for a large luxury cosmetics line in NYC for several years, although the products were effective and results-oriented, I was unhappy with the commitment to sustainability and the purity of ingredient formulations. Mod.skin labs was born…

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Bennu's New.Life.Style Mantra: Improving Markets for Recycled Products

Bennu is a socially responsible product development and marketing company that completes the recycling loop. By developing quality brands using sustainable business practices, Bennu is greening the standard for a new lifestyle. Bennu was started in 2009 by a diverse group of social entrepreneurs who met while pursuing their MBA’s in New York City with $40,000 in seed money. The founders, who came from across the world with varying backgrounds in finance, management, graphic design, and marketing, were brought together by…

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SunRun Is Bringing Solar Energy to A House Near You!

This series is made possible by energy-efficiency specialists WellHome and their Home Weatherization Giveaway Sweepstakes. Take a quick visual quiz of your home’s energy use to see your potential yearly savings. Hurry! For your shot at a grand prize of $2500 in energy efficiency upgrades, enter by March 20! With the risks involved with harnessing nuclear technology unmasked this week after the tsunami in Japan, developing and promoting clean renewable energy has never been so important. Solar energy is plentiful in…

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Food Trucks: A Sustainable & Viable Business Strategy?

Following Shannon Suetos’s post on green restaurants, is another possibility for sustainable food business: food trucks? The concept of food trucks has been around since the 50’s but the gourmet food truck has gained in popularity only recently with the social media boom and extensive coverage through reality shows like The Great Food Truck Race. Food trucks could become the next big thing in sustainable restaurants and food delivery with an effective economic model to boot. Food trucks can go where…

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Small Businesses Become Advocates for Change

This is a two-part post on how small businesses are making a difference in environmental policy. Changing business practices is only one piece of the greening puzzle. Turns out that the time you invest in making a difference may be as valuable to environmental progress as installing new light bulbs. Small businesses can have a big impact on promoting change—not just within their businesses, but by working together to change attitudes, influence policy makers, and promote innovation. Think nationally, think statewide—and…

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New Resource Bank Certified as a B Corporation

File this social enterprise news under ‘Better late than never’ From New Resource Bank’s website: SAN FRANCISCO (June 9, 2010) — New Resource Bank (OTCBB: NWBN) is proud to announce it has become a Certified B Corporation (the “B” is for benefit) for its commitment to comprehensive social and environmental standards. The bank is the first Certified B Corporation whose stock is traded on the OTC Bulletin Board. Not that New Resource is late relative to their larger contemporaries, more that…

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Reporting from NYC: Social Entrepreneurship Blooms

Last night, I attended the Catchafire 50 Project Kickoff event, part of this week’s National Conference on Volunteering and Service. Catchafire is a youth-driven venture to connect professionals who are looking to put their skills to meaningful use by linking up with nonprofits and social enterprises that could use expertise in branding, PR, design and social media campaigns. This event is an example of a growing community of talented, idealistic graduates and inspired professionals who are changing the way we…

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