Tackling the Global E-Waste Problem (Infographic)

Originally published on CustomMade. Last year, the world produced nearly 54 million tons of electrical and electronic products, but only a fraction of it was reused, refurbished, or recycled. With a relatively short lifecycle, e-waste now litters dumpsites all over the world, exposing humans and the environment to toxic materials. Some eco-conscious offices use industrial desks made mostly from recycled materials, while a number of homeowners have turned to reclaimed barnwood to create sustainable desks and entertainment centers. However, despite…

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The Happy Planet Index

Nic Marks, the creator of the Happy Planet Index, says his HPI shows the extent to which 151 countries across the globe produce long, happy and sustainable lives for the people that live in them. The overall index scores rank countries based on their efficiency, how many long and happy lives each produces per unit of environmental output. Each of the three component measures – life expectancy, experienced well-being and ecological footprint – is given a traffic-light score — green for…

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Edenkeeper Talks Walden Pond and Spirituality

Throughout Thoreau’s philosophy one can see a sort of neo-Taoism, specifically a way of understanding “higher” thought, spiritual and otherwise, through his reverance of nature: “It is something to be able to paint a particular picture, or to carve a statue, and so to make a few objects beautiful; but it is far more glorious to carve and paint the very atmosphere and medium through which we look, which morally we can do. To affect the quality of the day,…

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From Food Scraps to Fuel: Fueling a Fleet with CNG Made from Waste

There’s no denying that some renewable energy technologies are more visually appealing than others, especially the highly visible ones that look decidedly more ‘space-age’, such as solar power and wind power, but it’s going to take a variety of approaches, including not-so-sexy technologies such as converting waste to energy, to create a true clean energy future. One of the more common waste products in the developed world these days is food waste (which is a sad truth in a world…

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Imagining the Zero Waste City of Tomorrow

Around the world, cities are committed to becoming Zero Waste communities by adopting new principles and changing the way they manage waste. And they are finding that eliminating waste is not only environmentally beneficial but also economically advantageous.   The San Francisco Experience In the US, the city of San Francisco, California is leading the charge to become a truly zero waste city. Already, it has developed a comprehensive waste management strategy that city officials believe will enable it to keep 100 percent of its waste…

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renewable energy credits

Renewable Energy Credits for Individuals Can Lower Household Carbon Emissions

Buying carbon offsets and renewable energy credits (RECs) are two ways to lower the effective carbon emissions of a business or organization, but now, thanks to TerraPass, individuals can also purchase renewable energy credits for their households as well. According to the US Dept of Energy, the average American household consumes almost 11,000 kWh (11 MWh) of electricity annually, which has carbon emissions equivalent to the amount of carbon sequestered by over 6 acres of US forest over the course…

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EU Appetite for Wood Pellets Leading to Deforestation in Southern US

At a time when we’re well aware of the benefits of living forest ecosystems, in terms of not only mitigating the effects of air and water pollution, but also in recharging groundwater, storing carbon, serving as wildlife habitat, and perhaps even slowing climate change, it’s kind of silly to think of burning trees for electricity as being ‘clean energy.’ It’s even sillier to cut them down and ship them across the ocean to be used as fuel in power plants,…

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EveryDrop App Puts Power of Water Conservation In the Palm of Your Hand

If you’ve been paying attention to the news at all over the last year, you’re aware that the drought conditions, especially in states like California, are putting lots of pressure on local water systems. The answers to reducing that pressure, and to coming to terms with a drier future, are many, but one of them, a citizen platform for reporting water waste, could be an effective method of addressing the issue of wastage and raising awareness. A free app, EveryDrop,…

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Real-Time Air Quality Sensor Network Launched in Boston

A network of real-time air quality sensors, capable of taking readings every 20 seconds, is now online in Boston, MA, giving citizens up-to-the-minute data on the air they breathe. The Elm network consists of a series of connected sensors capable of measuring seven different air quality indicators, including particulates, nitrogen dioxide, nitrous oxide, ozone, volatile organic compounds, noise levels, temperature, and humidity, and uploading the data to a secure network, where it can be viewed and analyzed by anyone. While…

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