Video: Wildlife Works Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project, Kenya

Video: Wildlife Works Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project, Kenya 

Founded in 1997, Wildlife Works has been a pioneer in market based solutions for conservation for 21 years

TreeZero purchases 1 ton of carbon credits from Wildlife Works REDD+ projects in Africa to offset the emissions from every ton of paper sold. Our partnership helps provide alternatives to people in threaten forest communities helping provide gainful employment as an alternative to cutting down trees for charcoal. Two thirds of the funds TreeZero spends on carbon credits goes to community enhancement and funding local employment.

The TreeZero News July 23-29, 2018

VIDEO – TreeZero Sustainability Headlines – https://youtu.be/bQW1gyoWHk81 min 46 sec.

BACKYARD COMPOSTING – by Jeff Foote – There is no waste in nature.  As plants and trees die, they decompose and provide nutrients that help new flora sprout and prosper.  The same can come true for organic material generated where you live – including scraps from meal prep, food waste and grass clippings and leaves.  Do you compost? If not, why not give it a try?

By weight, food waste is the largest component of household waste going to landfills.  Together, food waste and yard trimmings make up as much as 30% of the waste stream.  16% of all methane gas emitted comes from rotting wasted food in landfills.  Methane is a greenhouse gas that is 21 times more potent than CO2.

Your plants and yard need food – why not feed them your leftovers.  Make your own NPK – Nitrogen, Phosphorus and Potassium are key nutrients vital to healthy soil and productive plant growth.  Compost can be a great and free source of each.  Compost also helps retain moisture in soil, while reducing methane emissions from landfills, and can help you save money on disposal, fertilizers and mulch.

Composting is easy to do.  It is a natural process where micro-organisms and or worms break down organic materials. It is recommended that you use a 5 to 10 gallon container with a lid to collect prep waste, peelings and plate scrapings in your kitchen.  You will also need a larger container for the composting process.  Commercial bins are available from local hardware stores and online.  For example, Amazon has dozens of options from wire mesh for just under $60 to large barrels or bins from more than $200.  You can also build your own bin or pile out of chicken-wire or old wood pallets.  It is recommended that you don’t add meat or bones to your compost – they can attract rodents and other animals.

Each time you add materials to your bin or pile, it is recommended that you turn – mixing the materials, moisture and oxygen helps facilitate the composting process.  You can expect as much as a 90% reduction in as soon as 14 days.

No backyard or limited on space?  Consider Vermiculture – A form of composting that uses red wiggler earthworms to breakdown food waste.  The end result – worm pooh – natural form of plant food.  For additional resources checkout the following: http://whatcom.wsu.edu/ag/compost/easywormbin.htm

https://www.atlantarecycles.com/composting.html

https://www.georgiarecycles.org/tools-resources/citizen-resource-guides/composting-in-georgia/

 

RECYCLING

Delta upcycling 350k pounds of ‘retired uniforms’ into travel bags, passport covers – https://bit.ly/2vgJUIa

Chinese mills face shortages RISI reported last week that six major Chinese mill operators will take downtime on more than 40 recycled paper and board machines during the coming month. https://bit.ly/2NULNSu

Eco-tip: Tossing toner cartridges wastes resources and money, so consider recycling – Of the 500 million printer cartridges sold each year in the United States, 350 million are disposed of in landfills, according to Earth911.org. Each toner cartridge is worth a credit of about $2 in the largest retailer trade-in programs at Staples and Office Depot. https://bit.ly/2sVxDHI

Artificial Intelligent (AI) Recycling Sorting Robot – SumurAI – Video from manufacturer claims up to 70 picks per minute vs 30-50 picks by manual sort; up to 95% efficiency of targeted product recognition. https://bit.ly/2KNdgEM  Chicago-based Lakeshore Recycling Systems recently became the first company in the U.S. to install.  Each of the bots will reportedly replace two full-time staff members  and translate to about $120,000 to $130,000 in annual savings.  https://bit.ly/2uRMqFk

Dell is using ink made from smog to print some of its packaging – The ink is made from the exhaust of polluting diesel generators. https://bit.ly/2LHFtNh

This London Lab is Using Technology to Help Feed the Planet – Green Lab has created cost-effective animal feed by taking waste from common businesses such as restaurants and bars, feeding that waste to insects, grinding the fast-growing insects down into a protein powder, and then creating a protein-dense bar that can feed both livestock and pets in a healthier way and for less cost.  https://bit.ly/2uSbPhc

Rutgers University nixes dining hall trays – Instead, students carry their food to the table with their hands. The results: 14 to 22 percent reduction in what students tossed after they ate and going trayless saves Rutgers about $30,000 a week.  https://njersy.co/2Ol16Vh

The Dirty Truth Is Your Recycling May Actually Go To Landfills – municipalities — from Sacramento, California, to Hooksett, New Hampshire — have canceled or significantly curtailed their recycling programs, leaving residents with no choice but to throw their recyclables in the trash.  https://bit.ly/2uRVGt4

A 2,000-sq-ft home can generate more than a ton of the gypsum board product – A team from Washington State University has designed drywall bricks, made from 80% drywall waste and a binder from industrial products to make blocks, lighter than earth blocks, bricks or concrete blocks come waterproof and fire resistant. Now the researchers want to partner with local contractors to get additional waste and use architecture students to use a press to build the blocks, which look similar to masonry bricks. In the next year, reports WSU, the researchers will test the blocks to meet building, seismic and fire codes. They also aim to build a 160-sq-ft demonstration structure. https://bit.ly/2mQkehJ

Scientists at the Georgia Institute of Technology have developed a new material made from crab shells and tree fibers. Researchers hope the material will serve as a more sustainable replacement for flexible plastic packaging used to keep food fresh. https://bit.ly/2M11uXO

UK theme parks to offer half-price entry in exchange for used plastic bottles Legoland and Thorpe Park among the attractions that have joined Coca-Cola in a trial offering instant incentives for recycling  https://bit.ly/2LvwCSf

Costco Taps Zest Fresh to Improve Produce Supply Chain – The solution helps reduce waste. Initial work is underway to provide analytic insights on the supply chain to help better manage freshness.  https://bit.ly/2AsDeMX

 

DEFORESTATION

Video: Wildlife Works Kasigau Corridor REDD+ Project, Kenya – Founded in 1997, Wildlife Works has been a pioneer in market based solutions for conservation for 21 years.  https://bit.ly/2AeykmA

17 Companies, Including TreeZero, Call for Protection of Canada’s Boreal Forest – Seventeen companies representing a range of sectors have urged Canada’s federal and provincial officials to implement safeguards around industrial activities that threaten species and landscapes in Canada’s boreal forest. The company letter can be found here.  https://on.nrdc.org/2uVT0dQ

Kenyan Company Using Slingshots to Plant Trees and Fight Deforestation – The initiative by the SeedBalls Kenya company, which makes and sells seedballs globally, is meant to encourage children have slingshot competitions using charcoal covered seeds instead of stones. About 2 million seedballs have been planted in Kenya alone in the past year and a half in what has been called “guerrilla gardening”. The company recycles coal dust collected around Nairobi and buys the seeds from the Kenya Forest Research Institute.  https://bit.ly/2AeDfny

The first database of primary forests in Europe – The map, which first appeared in the journal Diversity & Distributions in May, identifies more than 3.4 million acres in 34 European countries. According to their research, 89 percent of the primary forests fall under protected areas, but only 46 percent fall under what the team considers strict protection. That means that the other areas, despite being designated sites, can still be used for legal timber harvesting or salvage logging. https://bit.ly/2OpecB3

The southeastern U.S. is losing trees fast – Between 2000 and 2012, trees in the region were cut up to four times faster than in South American rainforests.  https://bit.ly/2LBYHr2

Rivers in the sky – Every tree in the forest is a fountain, sucking water out of the ground through its roots and releasing water vapor into the atmosphere through pores in its foliage. In their billions, they create giant rivers of water in the air – rivers that form clouds and create rainfall hundreds or even thousands of miles away. https://bit.ly/2K4w9S5

 Deforestation skyrockets in the Amazon rainforest – Imazon, an NGO that independently tracks forest trends in Brazil, this week released its monthly deforestation alert, which pegged June’s forest loss in the Amazon at 1,169 square kilometers, an area 343 times the size of New York’s Central Park. That represents a 108 percent increase over last June and tops the previous record of 1,112 square kilometers, which was set back in September 2007.  https://bit.ly/2LHzAmA

 

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

2018 is on pace to be the 4th-hottest year on record – https://cnn.it/2NUnPqs

 Shrink Your Dorm Print – Check out shopping guide and tip sheethttps://bit.ly/2OlymvL

BROKEN: Costs to Operate, Maintain Electrical Generation Facilities Have Soared Over Two Decades – From 1998 to 2017, non-fuel related operational and maintenance costs rose 74 percent.  https://bit.ly/2v75tdO

The Southern Ocean sucks up 40 per cent of the CO2 that humans send in to the atmosphere – but for how much longer? https://bit.ly/2mNdhxI

Coastal cities are already suffering from “climate gentrification” https://bit.ly/2uOW8re

Can Atlanta Run Entirely on Renewable Energy by 2035? https://bit.ly/2LfAHum

Environment Massachusetts Releases ‘Roadmap’ To 100 Percent Renewables https://bit.ly/2OsvFbN

A Century of Global Warming, in Just 35 Seconds – https://bit.ly/2uL2bOd

A Troubling Look at the Human Toll of Mountaintop Removal Mining – Heart defects were the most common – the risk for these was 181 percent higher in mining areas. https://bit.ly/2Bkxn7O

The Curbelo Carbon Tax Bill: A Breakthrough GOP Proposal on Climate Change? – Curbelo’s carbon tax bill visit here and herehttps://bit.ly/2mJixCD

Bloom Energy Rocks Into IPO – https://bit.ly/2LDhKkM

 Renewable energy is way too expensive, right? Global Weirding with Katharine Hayhoe – Renewable energy is a nice fad and all, but it’s way too expensive. What about poor people? Find out in this all new episode of Global Weirding. https://bit.ly/2OjzVu5

Baltimore Lawsuit Blames Oil and Gas Companies for Climate Change https://bit.ly/2mQhfpx

This eco-friendly concrete traps CO2 forever while being stronger – Thomas Concrete is using carbon cure on a mixed-use development which will be the largest building ever made with carbon cure concrete. https://bit.ly/2Oqt0zB

Britain to hand out 557 million pounds of renewables funding via auctions https://reut.rs/2Ak6bdI

Food Processing Grants Available to Help Improve Energy Efficiency – The state of California will be offering $57 million in food processing grants in an effort to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. The grant funding will allow food processors to save money as well as conserve energy. https://bit.ly/2LZ33Wa

 

WATER STEWARDSHIP

Oceans cover approximately 70 percent of the earth’s surface and just 13.2 percent of the world’s seas remains truly wild.  https://bit.ly/2Ah50vI

What is your Flood iQ? Are You at Risk from Tidal or Hurricane Flooding? – Will you be at risk in five years as sea levels continue to rise? Enter your address or city to find out. Currently they have data for addresses and cities in: FL, GA, SC, NC, VA. Flood iQ is a nonprofit focused on empowering homeowners to protect their property from flooding. It was created using the most advanced open source data from partners like:  NOAA; USGS; National Weather Service; US Army Corps of Engineers; and Columbia University.  https://www.floodiq.com

 

SUSTAINABILITY

Webinar – Understanding ESG as an Investor Relations Professional – Aug 23, 1 PM EST – This 30-minute webinar will focus on understanding how disclosed environmental, social and governance (ESG) data is leveraged by IR departments and investment professionals. We’ll cover the state of industry disclosure, materiality, peer analysis, supply chain, and UN Sustainable Development Goals, in addition to addressing some of the implications for investment research.   https://bit.ly/2JTKxww

ESG / Sustainability – Are Companies Realizing Real ROI? –  https://bit.ly/2uH2zxa

Staples and Jessica Alba Team Up – to help students succeed in the upcoming school year with a scholarship sweepstakes and in-kind donations to support classroom projects on DonorsChoose.org. Together, Staples and DonorsChoose.org have funded more than 700,000 classroom projects for teachers and positively affected more than 18 million students across the country. Parents, students and teachers can visit local Staples stores or Staples.com to support a classroom project or enter to win the scholarship today. https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180724005499/en/

Time is running out for the tropics: Extinction of hundreds of species due to deforestation, over-fishing and climate change is ‘imminent’ unless we act NOW, new research warns.  https://dailym.ai/2AnSLgC

New app to help consumers track where, how garments are made – Shoppers will soon be able to scan a barcode on a item of clothing to trace its origin. Ethical clothing advocate Samantha Jones is developing an app which allows consumers to find out where and how their clothing is made. https://bit.ly/2AoDAEi

The Consumer Goods Forum’s Sustainable Supply Chain Initiative (SSCI) has opened the global public consultation of its first set of benchmarking criteria. https://bit.ly/2veEhtF

 

THIS COMING WEEK IN HISTORY…

July 30, 1960 – President Johnson signs Medicare into law

July 31, 1965 – J.K. Rowling born

August 1, 1914 – First World War erupts

August 3, 1823 – Union General Thomas F. Meagher is born in Ireland

The TreeZero News July 16-22, 2018

VIDEO – TreeZero Sustainability Headlines – 1 min. 30 sec. https://youtu.be/ab08Sr9tJr8

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

As Americans Experienced the Warmest May on Record Their Acceptance of Global Warming Reaches a New High – 73% of Americans now think there is solid evidence of global warming. https://bit.ly/2uQwJgF

Renewables on the Rise 2018 – America produces nearly six times as much renewable electricity from the sun and the wind as it did in 2008, and the average American uses nearly 8 percent less energy than a decade ago, due in great part to improvements in energy efficiency. https://bit.ly/2L1Y8qJ

A Massive Iceberg Is Threatening to Destroy a Village in Greenland – An 11-million-ton iceberg has lodged dangerously close to a tiny coastal village in Greenland. If it breaks apart, enormous waves generated by the falling ice could wash away parts of the town. https://ti.me/2NpM4wv

Does the Time of Day I Use My Appliances Matter? – The short answer is “Yes, it does!” As a rule-of-thumb, after 9 pm and before 9 am are off-peak in most situations and can reduce cost and can help avoid the need for your utility to ramp up an additional power plant. https://bit.ly/2Nzvqub

Two-thirds of Africa’s population still don’t have access to electricity – More than 640 million people, two-thirds of the continent’s population, do not have access to electricity. https://ind.pn/2O5ndyZ

Renewable Energy Won’t Succeed Without This — and Utilities Are Already Preparing – when energy saved is considered an “energy source,” it’s by far the cheapest form of electricity, with levelized costs as low as $0.028 per kilowatt-hour (kWh). By comparison, the average American household pays $0.102 per kWh of electricity.   https://bit.ly/2O9nnFQ

CleanChoice Launches New Renewable Energy Broker Program – The new program allows energy brokers and consultants to make CleanChoice’s regional solar and wind power and community solar products available to both their business and nonprofit customers. The new program will initially be available to partners serving Delaware, Illinois, Maryland, Massachusetts, New Jersey, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. https://bit.ly/2O9rOjO

 Global Energy Spending Totaled $1.8 Trillion In 2017 As Clean Energy Investment Dropped 3% – Total global energy investment fell by 2% in 2017, totaling $1.8 billion according to the International Energy Agency’s World Energy Investment 2018 report which was published this week.  https://bit.ly/2LuDZcr

Our Energy Programs Need an Efficiency Upgrade, Too – Energy Efficiency for All, a national initiative to improve efficiency programs for lower-income residents, recently released a fact sheet documenting how comprehensive one-stop-shop energy efficiency programs can cut the waste—enabling residents and affordable housing owners to save more on bills and enjoy the increased health and comfort that efficiency upgrades provide.  https://on.nrdc.org/2LmNJWg

4 Notable Sustainable Fund Launches – there are now 285 sustainable open-end funds and ETFs available to U.S. investors.  https://bit.ly/2uRoBN6

Nevada officials verify 50% by 2030 renewables initiative will be on the ballot – Nevada’s Secretary of State confirmed that Nevadans for a Clean Energy Future had collected enough valid signatures to put its motion for a 50% by 2030 renewable energy mandate on the ballot on November 6.  https://bit.ly/2uHUWFI

 

DEFORESTATION

The World is Losing Vital Forests Quicker than Ever – In 2017, the world lost 29.4 million hectares (72.6 million acres) of tree cover — that’s around 80 percent the size of Germany. This was only slightly down from the 2016 record of 29.7 million hectares (73.4 million acres), according to new data by Global Forest Watchhttps://bit.ly/2zT5wzw

 Colombia pledges deforestation-free cocoa by 2025 – The world’s tenth largest cocoa producer has joined the Cocoa & Forests Initiative as it looks to combat a 46% increase in tree cover loss last year.  https://bit.ly/2uNn4HA

INDEPENDENT REDD+ GOVERNANCE MONITORING: A GUIDANCE DOCUMENT FOR CIVIL SOCIETY ORGANISATIONS – This guidance document is an overview of key steps and considerations for the design and implementation of effective independent REDD+ governance monitoring systems. Download the report HTTPS://BIT.LY/2LDPSIT

Soy giant Louis Dreyfus pledges deforestation-free supply chain https://bit.ly/2Nhmxpe

Global Forest Watch (GFW) is an online platform that provides data and tools for monitoring forests. By harnessing cutting-edge technology, GFW allows anyone to access near real-time information about where and how forests are changing around the world. https://www.globalforestwatch.org/about

The Climate Alliance Mapping Project (CAMP) is an initiative led by a team of geographers, storytellers, and archivists at the University of Arizona. CAMP builds interactive climate justice story maps that bring together scientific data and digital stories produced by affected communities to educate the public, connect local communities with global climate justice networks, and inform policy decisions.  https://climatealliancemap.org/home/

Southeast Asian deforestation more extensive than thought, study finds –  https://bit.ly/2Lh58QM

 

RECYCLING

VERITIV now offers a tree-free paperboard-based packaging option made with 100% sugarcane bagasse fibers. https://bit.ly/2L5tTPO

ADIDAS has committed to using only recycled plastic by 2024 – also said it would stop using virgin plastic in its offices, retail outlets, warehouses and distribution centers, a move that would save an estimated 40 tons of plastic per year, starting in 2018.  https://cnnmon.ie/2NjMB2O

Exclusive: Starbucks and McDonald’s team up to rethink cups – McDonald’s and Starbucks plan to leverage their combined scale to change the way all single-use cups are made and disposed of. The initiative is called the NextGen Cup Challenge, and it invites entrepreneurs, large and small, to develop materials and designs that can replace today’s cups. The challenge will provide grants to good ideas, and help startups work together to combine them into market-ready solutions.  https://bit.ly/2LoTDmx

Single-Use Plastic: Are Paper Straws Really the ‘Eco-Friendly’ Answer? –  paper straws were invented by the Sumerians for beer some 7,000 years ago, and later redesigned in the 1800s. Perhaps the broader challenge at this point isn’t to find new sources with which to manufacture old standby products as we seem to be increasingly doing, but develop alongside those products, new, reliable ways to ensure they make it into the recycle stream. https://bit.ly/2uOIunG

14% of all global wood harvest is used to make paper. Is it really worth it to cut down our life saving trees for this product?  http://www.theworldcounts.com/stories/Paper-Waste-Facts

About 14 billion tons of biomass/year are produced in agricultural cycles, and of this nearly 12 billion tons/year are essentially discharged as waste. Significant developments are taking place across the waste-to-fuel and waste-to-product industries, in the form of thermal — pyrolysis, hydrothermal, gasification — and non-thermal technologies.  https://bit.ly/2Lbf6TO

Coca-Cola sets out its view on what constitutes a good deposit return scheme – With consultations underway in England and Scotland on the benefits of introducing a deposit return scheme (DRS) to recycle cans and bottles, Coca-Cola European Partners has said what it believes will be a well-designed system. The company has revealed 11 points that it argues should be used to form a UK DRS. https://bit.ly/2uwDYLk

Waste incineration set to overtake recycling in England, Greens warn – The amount of waste managed by local authorities and sent to incinerators, or energy-from-waste plants, tripled between 2010-11 and 2016-17. By contrast, household recycling rates have stalled since 2013https://bit.ly/2LkIm6w  

Anellotech and Suntory take major steps towards the reality of a 100% bio-based plastic bottle.  https://bit.ly/2LuCwzu

Are you recycling right? Probably not – https://bit.ly/2LgasnL

Price Of Recycling Skyrockets In Broward County, And One City Isn’t Paying – https://bit.ly/2uEjlwH

2,000 tons of recycling are landfilled against King County code – https://bit.ly/2LuO7SC

Lancaster Co. PA trims recycling program to the ‘Big Four,’ cites market collapse – https://bit.ly/2Lkpzsf

EU PRESSED TO SET MANDATORY RECYCLED PLASTIC CONTENT REQUIREMENT – ‘Call for EU action on recycled content mandates for plastics’ has the support of groups including FEAD (The European Federation of Waste Management and Environment Services), Keep Britain Tidy, Plastic Recyclers Europe, the Resource Association, the European Environmental Bureau and the Marine Conservation Society.  https://bit.ly/2LqUcPU

Wrap report reveals food waste progress – but there’s a sting in the tail – The industry has increased the amount of food surplus sent to charities and commercial redistribution organisations by 51% in a two-year period. Also encouraging is that the greatest gains were in the form for charitable donations, up 80%.  https://bit.ly/2NrSHy2

Trash to treasure: Northern Arizona University’s (NAU) composting machine turning food waste into fertilizer (VIDEO) – http://news.nau.edu/composting/

The 2018 U.S. Food Waste Summit: Our Reflections – Measuring food waste provides “an empirical representation of inefficiency,” LeanPath CEO Andrew Shakman explained during a session titled Measurement of Food Waste. Without knowing what food, how much, and why it is being wasted, it is near impossible to start a reduction program. But where you sit in the food supply chain can dictate how easy it is to obtain an accurate measurement of food waste generation. Think about quantifying waste in an office cafeteria versus a 300,000 square foot warehouse.  https://bit.ly/2LtF4Oj

 

SUSTAINABILITY

Do CSR Initiatives Influence Millennial Consumers? – In 2014, 7,838 corporations released CSR reports, a 30% increase over the previous four years – roughly 80% of Fortune 500 companies released CSR reports in 2016. The 2017 Millennial Impact Report indicates that millennials are even more invested in philanthropy than they were in 2016, indicating that a focus on CSR is here to stay. https://bit.ly/2JsfebD

Sustainability in Treasury: A View Beyond Financing – Treasuries have a responsibility to support the overall corporate sustainability strategy, but many may not realise that the organisations they deal with on a daily basis – their banks – can be a valuable source of information and assistance with this task. Digitisation, automation, accelerating the trade cycle and cloud treasury systems are just some of the areas that banks can help with.  https://bit.ly/2mmXfdL

Pension schemes in the UK must take ESG factors into account – From October 2019, trust-based pension schemes will need to say how they take account of financially material ESG considerations including climate change; outline their policy on engaging with the companies in which they are invested, typically through their fund managers; and from 2020 report on how they have done this. https://bit.ly/2LiADJq

J.P. Morgan Alternative Asset Management Launches ESG Forum Promoting ESG Integration to Hedge Fund Managers – https://bit.ly/2JHRNv3

 Sustainable investing grows in popularity, but is dogged by performance questions –  https://on.mktw.net/2ms581m

Ratings that Don’t Rate – An individual company can carry vastly divergent ratings from different ESG rating agencies simultaneously, due to differences in methodology, subjective interpretation, or an individual agency’s agenda.  https://bit.ly/2LBwvky

Unregulated Social Investment Ratings Threaten Booming Energy Economy – https://bit.ly/2Leo9DD

Northern Trust Releases Corporate Social Responsibility Report – https://bit.ly/2zRef5q

BB&T releases annual Corporate Social Responsibility Report – https://read.bi/2L5CnGO

Ossabaw Island Service Weekend – Join the Georgia Conservancy and the Ossabaw Island Foundation for a weekend service trip to Ossabaw Island on September 14-16.  https://bit.ly/2JAhf5F

CSRHub.com — an aggregator of company environmental and social responsibility data — rated clothing brands. https://bit.ly/2NxQiSA

Georgia Conservancy is proud to honor Rob Williams of the Institute of Georgia Environmental Leadership (IGEL) and Georgia State University as the 2018 Distinguished Conservationist. Mr. Williams will be honored at the ecoBenefete 2018 on September 21 from 6:30 PM – 9:30 PM at The Stave Room at American Spirit Works, Atlanta, Georgia  https://bit.ly/2uPWJJd

 

THIS COMING WEEK IN HISTORY…

July 23, 1880 – 1st commercial hydroelectric plant begins, Grand Rapids, MI

July 24, 1847 – Rotary type printing press Patents received by Richard March Hoe

July 26, 1835 – 1st sugar cane plantation started in Hawaii

The TreeZero News July 9-15, 2018

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

Global quadrupling of cooling appliances to 14 billion could see staggering increase in world’s energy consumption – the University of Birmingham report authors forecast that the 14 billion devices needed by 2050 will consume five times the amount of energy currently predicted for cooling usage. The report – A Cool World – Defining the Energy Conundrum of ‘Cooling for All (PDF)’  https://bit.ly/2KYLoBt

Apple announces $300m China Clean Energy Fund to help power greener supply chain – https://bit.ly/2Ne7a0G

US household energy use falling as homes become more energy efficient – U.S. household energy use fell by more than 10 percent between 2009 and 2015, despite a 4 percent increase in the number of households over the same period, according to analysis of data from the U.S. Energy Information Administration by the Joint Center for Housing Studies of Harvard University. https://bit.ly/2Li4sKo

Journey to the Pole – The South Pole Energy Challenge – Video from Shell – Discover the physical and mental strength it takes to walk to the South Pole using only renewable energy. https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=izAoe2iBDLo

How Much Renewable Power Does the World Use? – Modern renewables achieved a growth rate of 5.4% of total energy consumption across the globe, representing its biggest ever increase.

https://bit.ly/2Lg91kS

Kenya’s ban on charcoal production affects millions – Extraction of wood to be used as fuel has contributed to deforestation in the east African country, forcing the government to ban production of charcoal. But, this has left millions of people without an important source of energy.  https://bit.ly/2uz5t6o

California Beat Its 2020 Emissions Target Four Years Early – In 2016, California’s greenhouse gas emissions were lower than in 1990, despite a larger population and booming economy, the state’s air resources board reportedhttps://for.tn/2uvQda8

New York Announces Plan Of Action For Procuring Offshore Wind – New York has a goal of 2.4 GW of new offshore wind generation by 2030, enough to power 1.2 million New York households. https://bit.ly/2LfNKrN

New investor-backed campaign targets a trillion dollars for US renewables – ACORE has introduced a new campaign to get investment in U.S. renewables and related grid infrastructure to a cumulative $1 trillion by 2030. https://bit.ly/2mgAVCI

Introducing Climate Innovation 2050 – In a new initiative we call Climate Innovation 2050, C2ES is bringing together companies in key sectors to look collectively at plausible pathways to decarbonizing the U.S. economy. https://bit.ly/2un6q27

London’s zero carbon city plans kick-started with £500 million energy efficiency fund – https://bit.ly/2J7fYTp

Ireland will be the first country to divest from fossil fuels – Ireland passed a bill in its lower house of parliament that will require the country’s national investment fund to sell all of its investments in oil, coal, gas, and peat. The fund currently holds investments worth more than $400 million in 150 fossil fuel companies.  https://bit.ly/2me9Xvr

More than 45,000 businesses could be hit with fines of up to €1 million (£0.88m) if they fail to comply with EU energy efficiency reporting rules. Organizations with at least 250 employees or annual revenues of more than €50 million (£44m) must conduct energy audits. That includes calculating their total energy consumption and identifying saving opportunities across their estate every four years, with the next deadline on 5th December 2019.  https://bit.ly/2NedZiQ

 

DEFORESTATION

Take a Walk in the Woods. Doctor’s Orders – Last June the Northside Hospital Cancer Center in Atlanta began to formally offer forest therapy as part of a pilot project in collaboration with the Chattahoochee Nature Center. Twelve patients with newly diagnosed cancers recently signed up for a session, according to Christy Andrews, the executive director of Cancer Support Community Atlanta. “It was a four-hour session that seemed to have an impact on the patients,” she said. https://nyti.ms/2JhhN0p

Explainer: Drought creates a perfect storm for wildfires in U.S. West – The number of wildfires larger than 25,000 acres on U.S. Forest Service land in the West nearly quadrupled in the decade to 2014, compared with the 1980s, according to data from the Department of the Interior. An expected 1.8 Fahrenheit (1C) temperature rise by mid-century is expected to double or triple the annual acreage burned from a current 7 million acres average, according to a study by the U.S. Forest Service and Department of Agriculture. https://reut.rs/2mgxRGB

 

RECYCLING

Nearly 1,000 recycling centers in California have closed in the last two years, about 40% of the total, leaving consumers in many communities with no local place to leave their bottles and redeem their nickels.  https://lat.ms/2uhwjzD

Solar panel recycling to reach new highs thanks to Veolia’s dedicated plant – The state-of-the-art facility is located in Rousset, France, which is currently the 4th biggest solar panel market in the entire EU. The new solar panel recycling centre will process approximately 1300 tonnes of solar panels this year. https://bit.ly/2NzPXj4

Starbucks to scrap plastic straws globally by 2020 – https://usat.ly/2KY7dQC

ALDI Adds How2Recycle Label to All Exclusive Brand Products https://bit.ly/2m57KSH

How San Francisco sends less trash to the landfill than any other major U.S. city – the city diverts about 80 percent of its waste from landfills, or more than 1.5 million tons every year. https://cnb.cx/2NSQSeD

IFIXIT– The free repair guide for everything, written by everyone.  https://www.ifixit.com

 

WATER STEWARDSHIP

Synthesis Report Highlights Challenges in Meeting Global Water Goals – The world is not on track to reach the Sustainable Development Goal on clean water and sanitation (SDG 6), according to an UN-Water Report based on the latest data available for the 11 SDG 6 global indicators. Preliminary estimates suggest that, in high to middle-income countries, 59% of household wastewater flows are safely treated. https://bit.ly/2m9YBZm

Emerald invests in HydroPoint – Emerald Technology Ventures is pleased to announce an investment in HydroPoint Data Systems Inc. HydroPoint helps commercial, government, education and community sites maximize water savings, reduce operating costs and minimize risk.  https://bit.ly/2KOui9o

LifeStraw, a global leader in developing innovative filtration and purification products for safe drinking water, today released its first responsibility report highlighting 13 years of global safe drinking water efforts. LifeStraw is now supporting over one million kids in 1,621 schools where 10,677 purifiers are installed, and over 10,000 follow-up visits have taken place and continue monthly.  https://bit.ly/2Nev9wy

 

SUSTAINABILITY

Krill fishing firms back Antarctic ocean sanctuary – companies responsible for 85% of krill fishing in Antarctic waters announced a “voluntarily permanent stop” to their operations in key areas, including the proposed sanctuary and “buffer zones” around penguin breeding grounds. https://bit.ly/2NFkHzd

When will “socially responsible investing” become just “investing”? https://bit.ly/2L1KZxq

General Mills Utilizes SDGs as ‘Common Language’ for Global Sustainability Initiatives 

https://bit.ly/2J7s6E1

Air pollution is triggering diabetes in 3.2 million people each year – The new estimate, reported in July in The Lancet Planetary Health, holds air pollution responsible for about 14 percent of new cases of diabetes worldwidehttps://bit.ly/2u6Ryor

Raymond James has boosted its model portfolio offering with the launch of its first ever environmental, governance and social (ESG) model portfolios. https://bit.ly/2N2zfIk

How Laundry Is Reducing America’s Carbon Footprint – About 60 percent of the energy used by an item of clothing happens after its purchased, when it enters the home and it’s washed, worn, and washed again.  In 2005, only 11 percent of U.S. households had washers that meet EnergyStar criteria; that number rose to 41 percent in 2016. According to the Department of Energy, replacing all washers in the U.S. with EnergyStar models would save 11 billion kilowatts of energy and 550 billion gallons of water per year.  https://thebea.st/2L9j8rX

Joint Statement Calls on UK Government for Central Modern Slavery Registry – Of the 25 million people estimated to be in modern slavery around the world today, 16 million are thought to be working within the private sector. https://bit.ly/2ueymFh

The State of Restaurant Sustainability 2018 Edition – The National Restaurant Association is committed to helping members move forward on their sustainability path. Additional tools and resources can be found at Restaurant.org/Conserve.  https://bit.ly/2sBONeg

Recruiting Top Talent For Your Company Begins With Social Impact – https://bit.ly/2mhbUXL

Companies Can Improve The World: How CSR And Marketing Tie The Knot https://bit.ly/2LdjVen

FOUR BIG FOOD COMPANIES LAUNCH SUSTAINABLE FOOD POLICY ALLIANCE – Danone, Mars, Nestle and Unilever, have launched a new trade organization, the Sustainable Food Policy Alliance, focused on driving progress in public policies that shape what people eat and how it impacts their health, communities and the planet. https://bit.ly/2umhhts

HP links $700 million in revenue to sustainability strategy – https://bit.ly/2uiZp1o

PepsiCo Reports Waste Diversion and Packaging Progress – By the end of 2017, the company diverted 95% of their waste from landfill, up two percentage points from the 2016 rate.  For 2025, the company also aims to design 100% of their packaging to be recyclable, compostable or biodegradable. PepsiCo’s new report highlighted progress toward their packaging and waste reduction goals. https://bit.ly/2udWCaM

 

THIS COMING WEEK IN HISTORY…

July 19, 1799 – Rosetta Stone found.

July 20, 1969 – Armstrong walks on the moon.

July 21, 1861 – First Battle of Bull Run.

July 22, 1862 – President Lincoln tells his cabinet about Emancipation Proclamation

The TreeZero News July 2-8, 2018

Video of Key Sustainability Headlines For This Week – (1 min 36 sec) https://bit.ly/2J5wjIg

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

Nations Urged to Raise Emission Targets and Policies Ahead of COP24 – A group of some 23 nations has just signed an agreement, Declaration for Ambition, to raise climate commitments and to increase efforts to get other nations to do the same – by 40 percent of the 1990 levels by 2030 and 80 percent by 2050. https://bit.ly/2No3kmj

According to Signify (formerly Philips Lighting), a global switch to LEDs across the private sector could avoid 403 million tons of CO2 emissions while generating US$94 billion in cost savings.  https://bit.ly/2NrMd3d

China has launched a trading scheme to improve fuel efficiency among car manufacturers – https://carbon-pulse.com/55108/

Cummins Announces Acquisition of Electric and Hybrid Powertrain Provider – Efficient Drivetrains, Inc. (EDI), which designs and produces hybrid and fully-electric power solutions for commercial markets. https://www.businesswire.com/news/home/20180702005572/en/

Masdar and Norway’s Oil Giant Launch First Battery Storage System Linked to Offshore Wind –  https://bit.ly/2Kz5ql1

The production of renewable energy in Germany has hit a new record, providing more than 40 per cent of the country’s power supply in the first half of 2018.   https://bit.ly/2tT877l

Renewables provide 60% of Portugal’s electricity – https://bit.ly/2NkqD0u

Scientists listen to ocean bubbles – The Earth’s atmospheric methane concentration has increased by about 150 percent since 1750, and it accounts for 20 percent of the total global greenhouse gases.  https://bit.ly/2tXIG4p

Bleaching of the Great Barrier Reef could happen every two years, report finds –  https://bit.ly/2NqdlzB

Rising sea levels are forcing those living in the Outer Banks to grapple with the impacts of climate change – Already, the North Carolina Department of Environmental Quality says, about six feet of costal land erodes every yearhttps://on.natgeo.com/2u5cbAT

Bill includes $1M for clean energy tech research at UMass https://bit.ly/2Ni3dZK

More Efficient with Fewer Emissions: Cement Factory Finds Sugar-Based Biomass a Sweet Solution – biomass pellets cost about $80 to $100 per ton on the global market, depending on required quantities and quality and have brought a 20% reduction in the plant’s use of coal—along with a 10% drop in CO2 emissions and about a 15% reduction in SOx emissions. https://bit.ly/2tKHp0M

US emissions of methane – a potent greenhouse gas – are 60% higher than EPA thinks – The new study estimates the current leak rate from the U.S. oil and gas system is 2.3 percent, versus the current EPA inventory estimate of 1.4 percent. Although the percentages seem small, the volume represents enough natural gas to fuel 10 million homes – lost gas worth an estimated $2 billion. https://usat.ly/2tnqgtC

The Startup Aiming to Wipe Out Blockchain’s Carbon Footprint – Singapore-based New Era Energy has developed a blockchain-based framework called Carbon Grid Protocol that is intended to help other blockchain players offset emissions. In the case of bitcoin, these are estimated to equal more than 500 kilos of carbon dioxide per transaction. https://bit.ly/2J0lyqD

UK publishes latest results in tackling global climate change – The 2018 International Climate Finance (ICF) results, Supported 47 million people to cope with the effects of climate change – equivalent to the population of Spain; Provided 17 million people with improved access to clean energy; Reduced or avoided 10.4 million tonnes of greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions (tCO2e) – approximately equivalent to the yearly emissions of 2.5 million cars; Installed 590 MW of clean energy capacity; Mobilised 3.3 billion pounds public and 910 million pounds private finance for climate change purposes in developing countries.  https://bit.ly/2KY6rjm

Global warming may be twice what climate models predict – https://bit.ly/2IZgyCD

Experimental Solar Road in Georgia Is Paving a New Way – The first solar roadway in the U.S. debuted on an 18-mile stretch of I-85 in southwestern Georgia. It’s called the Ray C. Anderson Memorial Highway, and the asphalt is a living laboratory now known as The Ray. A small section of the roadway leading to the Visitor’s Center is paved with solar panels and serves as a testing ground for solar roadway technology.  https://bit.ly/2ufhxcv

 

DEFORESTATION

Innovation Forum is partnering with TFA 2020 to host a complimentary webinarThe sprint to 2020: Partnerships in action to end commodity-driven deforestation. The webinar will take place on Wednesday 11th July at 14.00 BST / 9.00 EDT. If you can’t make the time, register anyway and we’ll send you a recording. You can sign up here: https://bit.ly/2tWSa02

The State of the World’s Forests 2018 (SOFO 2018) analyses the role that forests and trees – and the people who use and manage them – can play in helping countries achieve their objectives and bring about a brighter future. The world’s forest area decreased from 31.6 percent of the global land area to 30.6 percent between 1990 and 2015, but that the pace of loss has slowed in recent years.  http://www.fao.org/state-of-forests/en/

Investing in indigenous communities is most efficient way to protect forests, report finds – https://bit.ly/2KtRV6M

Colombia’s Serranía de Chiribiquete becomes world’s largest tropical rainforest national park – https://bit.ly/2KFHMU1

Largest US Reforestation Carbon Credit Issuance – GreenTrees recently completed its latest verification for 1,273,866 metric tons on the American Carbon Registry (ACR). https://bit.ly/2N0bGQd

Pakistan has just planted over a billion trees – https://bit.ly/2IODbJV

New report: New ideas for better rainforest protection – There are three important reasons for the world’s failure to protect the remaining rainforest: Increasing demand for products leading to deforestation, fragmentation of intact and primary forests, and finance flows leading to deforestation. After ten years of high-level talks about forest protection, a new report from the Rainforest Foundation Norway gives recommendations for how the world can be more successful in its battle against forest destruction.  The report can be downloaded here.  https://bit.ly/2zfSBYq

 

RECYCLING

Your county-by-county guide to recycling in metro Atlanta –  https://on-ajc.com/2lUWsjU

For restaurants, tracking food waste, costs ‘could be the difference between succeeding and going out of business’ – SimpleOrder, an inventory management system, was founded in 2012 as a way to help restaurants run more efficiently. https://trib.in/2NjgNw2

Recycling Disruptions Hit 75% of the US Market – https://bit.ly/2L29uae

THE NEW NATURAL: FINDING FABRIC INNOVATION IN FOOD WASTE AND FARMING – From oyster, coconut, and macadamia nut shells to coffee grounds and scraps of cotton literally rescued from the cutting room floor, the next generation of outdoor product innovation isn’t invention—it’s reuse.  https://bit.ly/2IVYY2w

Blue recycling bins now a big billing in Central New York https://bit.ly/2MLXb2z

Japan fans still stayed to clean the stadium after heartbreaking World Cup loss –   https://usat.ly/2MJyUKf

Japan team leave World Cup dressing room spotless with ‘thank you’ note in Russian despite devastating loss https://bit.ly/2KKe5Or

Coke Piloting Kiosks That Reward Recycling With Charitable Donations – at the 2018 Special Olympics. Attendees can stop by the two recycling stations in Seattle to deposit PET bottles or aluminum cans. Each recycled package triggers a $.05 donation to Special Olympics Washington. https://bit.ly/2KHlqOv

Charlotte’s recycling ‘is broken.’ Could your plastic, paper be headed for a landfill? –  https://bit.ly/2u9FMZZ

Amazon, H&M and other multinationals pressing to soften Indian state’s plastic ban –  https://reut.rs/2lPtRwl

Four Million American Anglers Mobilized in Crowdsourced Effort to Collect Data and Trash from U.S. Waters This Independence Day – Keep America Beautiful is partnering with Fishbrain, the world’s most popular mobile app and social network for people who love fishing, to ask the app’s over 4 million US users to undertake the largest-ever one-day crowdsourced audit of litter in the US. https://bit.ly/2u6KwPN

What Happens to the Plastic We Throw Out – How a piece of trash can travel from land to Henderson Island, an uninhabited, remote island in the middle of the South Pacific Ocean.    https://on.natgeo.com/2k60lSs

NPR – China’s Retaliatory Tariffs Hit Small Recycling Business – https://n.pr/2u47s2V

UGA Study: The Chinese import ban and its impact on global plastic waste trade – An estimated 111 million metric tons of plastic waste will be displaced with the new Chinese policy by 2030.  https://bit.ly/2Kyd383

Adidas vows to clean up oceans with UltraBOOST Parley push – The sportswear brand teamed up with TBWA\NEBOKO to push the new UltraBOOST running shoe — made from 11 plastic bottles gathered from the ocean by Parley for the Oceans. https://bit.ly/2KOrl7U

Recycle Across America TV Commercial, ‘You Recycle, Right?’ Featuring Kristen Bell – https://bit.ly/2u1aYLG

E-Waste Offers an Economic Opportunity as Well as Toxicity – In the United States, which generated an estimated 6.9 million tons of e-waste in 2016 (42 pounds per person), most e-waste probably goes straight into the trash. By one account, e-waste makes up just 2 percent of the total volume in American landfills — but more than two-thirds of heavy metals.  https://nyti.ms/2KWxBu8

Researchers race to make bioplastics from straw and food waste – New bioplastics are being made in laboratories from straw, wood chips and food waste, with researchers aiming to replace oil as the source of the world’s plastic. https://bit.ly/2zdMlA9

What is the true cost of the fruit & veg you waste? Calculate your impact on the environment and how much money you could save.  http://www.itsfresh.com/food-waste-calculator/

 

WATER STEWARDSHIP

An Ode to The Toilet, A Water Conservation Champ – The toilet is the single largest user of water in the home. Each day the average toilet will use about 33 gallons of water. https://bit.ly/2u6PiNn

GLOBAL PRECIPITATION & TEMPERATURE OUTLOOK JULY 2018 – HTTPS://BIT.LY/2NOIVLV

Enormous Potential of Brackish Groundwater Desalination – New research ​suggests ​there’s a ​large untapped ​resource for ​many of the ​increasingly ​water-limited ​regions of the ​U.S. and around ​the world: ​brackish ​groundwater, ​which, in ​theory at least,​ would require ​much less ​energy to ​desalinate than ​seawater. ​https://bit.ly/2zgOjzY

At Staples arena, they’re making ice from thin air – Staples Center will be able to reduce energy consumption by more than 8.2 million kilowatt-hours a year and water consumption by more than 500,000 gallons a year, he estimated.  https://bit.ly/2KCVKa0

 

SUSTAINABILITY

Towards a New Materiality: A review of the current practices of FTSE 100 & a possible path ahead – by Sancroft Team – In this report we share our findings and collective ideas with two objectives in mind: firstly, to assess the state of current practices among the FTSE 100, including common challenges and innovative solutions; and secondly, to inspire new thinking and start the conversation with the broader community of sustainability professionals.  https://bit.ly/2IUGbVh

The Sustainable Agriculture Initiative Platform (SAI Platform) announces a new vision and mission to drive nine strategic priorities designed to deliver protection, resilience and value to members and the sustainable agricultural sector. https://bit.ly/2zmRDK3

Morgan Stanley IM bolsters ESG offering for $40 bn equity team – The fund aims to offer a concentrated, high-quality global equity portfolio with a low carbon impact, which scores well on ESG factors as measured by third parties.  https://bit.ly/2IV0bqY

CAN WE DEFEAT THE SIXTH MASS EXTINCTION? – In the last 50 years, humans have done so much damage to the environment that it might be impossible to make any tangible recovery, according to a report, Millennium Ecosystem Assessment (MEA), published by the UN. Currently the rate of extinction of both plants and animals is much higher than normal. Although extinction of one species in a million per year is considered normal, conservation ecologist from Duke University, Dr Stuart Pimm, and curator of palaeonology department of American Museum of Natural History, Dr. Michael Novak, believe the rate of extinction of different species will be 1000 times the natural rate within the next few decades; and 50 percent of the world’s species will be lost forever within the next century. https://bit.ly/2zcDGOI

Kroger’s 2018 sustainability report, which reflects their environmental and corporate responsibility efforts for 2017.   https://bit.ly/2KSW57Q

Home Depot – Issues 2018 Responsibility Report – https://thd.co/2zjY3cv

 

THIS COMING WEEK IN HISTORY…

July 10th 1985 – French foreign intelligence agents blow up the Greenpeace boat Rainbow Warrior in Auckland harbor, New Zealand to prevent it interfering with French nuclear tests in the South Pacific

July 12th– 1859 Paper bag manufacturing machine patents by William Goodale, Massachusetts

July 13th– 1568 Dean of St. Paul’s London, Alexander Nowell perfects a way to bottle beer

July 14th– 1789 Bastille Day – the French Revolution begins with the fall of the Bastille Prison

 

The TreeZero news June 25 – July 1, 2018

JOIN THE CLIMATE FORCE CHALLENGE

I recently had a wide-ranging conversation with Robert and Barney Swan, of The Climate Force Challenge, discussing polar expeditions, climate change, inspiration and the importance for individuals and businesses to work towards carbon neutrality.  Below are highlights and a few of my observations from that conversation.

In the early 1980’s, the famed French Oceanographer, Jacques Cousteau, personally inspired a young English Cab Driver, Robert Swan, to adopt a long-term vision to preserve Antarctica.

Monsieur Cousteau convinced Robert that humankind still had a chance to leave one continent natural and unspoiled.  There was just enough time to ensure that the home of 70% of the world’s freshwater, millions of penguins, whales and seals would not be exploited, but could be preserved and conserved for the good of all, if people were inspired to take action.

Antarctica could be forever dedicated to advancing science and education.  No bloody mining, no colonization, no war.  Full stop.

To achieve this vision, Cousteau inspired Rob to create a series of expeditions and to engage thousands of young people, businesses and industries to become part of the story.  Connecting Cousteau’s advice to their recent ground-breaking South Pole Energy Challenge (SPEC) expedition, Robert said, “The basis of success is to have a great story.  In a world of over communications and too much information, what people actually want today is inspiration not more information.”

Rob went on to say, “What young people, corporate leaders and educators need to do is show leadership.  Inspire.  Take a risk. In the Antarctic, we are in a survival situation.  A survivor does not see a problem and do nothing about it.  Leaders need to take risks to solve problems and do things that captures their people’s imagination.  Take bold action that creates inspiration, not more information.”

Driven by mission madness, Rob became the first person to walk to both the South and North Poles, earning him the Medal of the Order of the British Empire (OBE).  For more than 35 years, Rob has hatched and successfully completed a series of missions, inspiring thousands of diverse individuals across the globe to raise awareness and help save Antarctica.  With each new far-flung adventure propelling Rob’s vision for saving Antarctica into clearer focus – to leverage his efforts to safe Antarctica to inspire others to take action.  “The Greatest Threat to Our Planet Is the Belief That Someone Else Will Save It.”

I first met Rob in June of 2002 and later that year helped staff his Mission Antarctica exhibit at the World Summit for Sustainable Development in Johannesburg, South Africa.  Shortly thereafter, I had the honor of helping organize and participate in the first two of ten annual, Inspire Expedition Antarctica (IEA) leadership and teamwork missions, partly sponsored by The Coca-Cola Company.

Now, at the age of 61, Rob, this time inspired by his 23-year-old son Barney, decided to see if it could be possible to walk across the Antarctic continent without using fossil fuels for cooking or heating.  Why?  To set an example for the world, that if a small group of explorers could survive a 600-mile trek to the South Pole relying solely on renewable fuels, people back home surely could successfully transition from fossil fuels.

Dozens of sponsors, large and small, helped outfit, orient, fuel and feed the team.  With the help of NASA, build solar devices to melt snow, bio-fuel made from waste materials from Shell and tons of intestinal fortitude, Rob, Barney, Kyle O’Donoghue and Martin Barnett set out on the South Pole Energy Challenge on November 15, 2017.  One interesting culinary innovation was a tasty energy bar made by Atlanta based CSM Bakery.  Packed with 1,000 calories and designed to stay soft even at minus 40 degrees C, the CSM bars were a safe and convenient snack, providing a blast of energy without risk of a broken tooth from biting a frozen slab of nutrition.

The first fortnight or so of the journey was typical Antarctic stuff.  Minus 45-degree Celsius temperatures, frequent wind blasts of over 50 miles per hour, hauling 300-pound sledges 8-9 miles per day under a night-less sky, touches of frostbite, and massive chafing that comes from enduring ice in your underpants.

But as the days rolled on, the team was falling behind their hard and fast goal to cover at least 10 nautical miles per day, due to a nagging hip injury that reduced Rob’s speed and endurance.   Rob knew physically and mentally, he could make it to the Pole, but deadlines would be missed, supply lines strained and an important rendezvous with several expedition sponsors, scheduled to march the final 60 miles with the SPEC team to the Pole, would be blown.

Rob was forced to make a key leadership decision.  “I realized I was becoming weak, because of a hip injury, I was slowing the team down.  I came to the conclusion that making it to the South Pole was not about me, it was about the team being the first expedition attempting an assault on the South Pole surviving solely on renewable energy.”

So, Rob flew back to base camp to rest and recuperate for several weeks before rejoining the team and sponsors for the final 60-mile push to the Pole.  “While this was the hardest decision of my life, I realized this was now becoming Barney’s story, not mine.  At the time it felt like failure.  But now, reflecting on it, clearly, it was the best decision I ever made.”

Rob added, “The lesson for corporate people and NGOs is you don’t always have to lead.  Sometimes you have to support.  Sometimes you have to be a servant leader, not the leader that’s out there.  The impacts of climate change are creating risks to business and commerce and corporate leaders are starting to get that we are facing a survival situation.  Customers are beginning to truly make some choices.  Reducing your carbon footprint, using renewables is now a serious business opportunity.”

Two years of maniacal physical, mental and operational preparation by the SPEC team enabled them to successfully reach the South Pole on January 15, 2018.  I asked Barney if there was any key decision they made that ensured success.  “In our planning, not leaving anything up to an assumption was the rule.  We tried to avoid as much assumption as possible.  Relentlessly double and triple checking systems, supplies, savage organization and to do lists was key to making it all happen.”

Looking back on the journey, Barney pointed to: Day 45, as a pivotal moment.   “It was the toughest day of my life.  I had frost bite on my feet and face, mega bleeding in my crotch from chafing.  It was minus 45 degrees C.  But I realized I was there by choice, not circumstance.  This was my idea.  I chose to walk to the South Pole using only renewables and I was going to finish it. People in life forget that they are often in their situation by choice.  I was thinking of all of those people that suffer hunger, homelessness, or dehydration, due to circumstance, and don’t have a safety net.  Focusing on the bigger purpose of fulfilling promises to sponsors and completing mission got me through.  The greater goal drove me – and has now become the spring board for the next seven years.”

Barney added, “I am really proud we designed and made this expedition net positive from an emissions standpoint.  It is a model I want to help adventurers, small business, and families replicate.  People need to feel like they can have attainable solutions to balance out their emissions and work toward a carbon neutral future.   We really need to make it happen a lot faster than 2070 if we want to have any hope of keeping our planet’s temperature rise under 4 degrees.”

I asked Barney what was next for Climate Force Challenge? “We proved it was possible to survive with renewables to get to the South Pole.  Now we are setting out on a journey to scale what we achieved.  Over the next seven years, we are going to create and promote a series of projects and convenient solutions, that added together, will be responsible for cleaning 326 million tons of CO2 from the atmosphere.”

“We are working with individuals and organizations to set goals to reduce their carbon footprints.  First step is to identify and commit to a series of simple changes to reduce your footprint.  Like using efficient light bulbs, planting trees, reducing consumption of meat, carpooling or purchasing paper made from sugarcane waste.  Then progressing to more difficult and impactful efforts, such as buying green power from utilities, installing renewable energy systems, starting kelp and algae farms.”

“During the summer of 2019, we will be taking 90 people from around the world to the Arctic.”  Base camp will be Svalbard, a Norwegian archipelago between mainland Norway and the North Pole.  “We will take Industry leaders, blend them with a mix of students and educators, and create a shared vision of doing a bit more for the planet.  Integrating an experience with commitments – inspiring folks to become ambassadors – creating an incubator to bloom and scale.  Two weeks of leadership, teamwork and setting goals for sustainable solutions.”

“We want to help folks set and achieve goals. Promote sustainable business solutions that make meaningful contributions to reducing CO2.  If you can’t join us in the Artic, we will be visiting many locations across the US over the next seven years where you can join us in setting convenient goals and implementing simple solutions and impactful innovations to save our planet.”

For more information on SPEC checkout this CBS documentary:

https://www.cbsnews.com/news/expedition-antarctica-cbsn-originals/

 

DEFORESTATION

Meet Mike Nilan of TreeZero – http://voyageatl.com/interview/meet-mike-nilan-treezero-vinings/

CDP’s 2017 Global Forests Report – Up to US$941 billion of turnover in publicly listed companies is dependent on commodities linked to deforestation, including soy, palm oil, cattle and timber. https://www.cdp.net/en/research/global-reports/global-forests-report-2017

Urban trees can store almost as much carbon as tropical rainforests  https://bit.ly/2yL4ghG

2017 Was the Second-Worst Year on Record for Tropical Tree Cover Loss – according to new data from the University of Maryland, released today on Global Forest Watch. In total, the tropics experienced 15.8 million hectares (39.0 million acres) of tree cover loss in 2017, an area the size of Bangladesh. That’s the equivalent of losing 40 football fields of trees every minute for an entire year. Colombia faced one of the most dramatic increases in tree cover loss of any country, with a 46 percent rise compared to 2016, and more than double the rate of loss from 2001-2015. https://bit.ly/2KifxLH

 Going green with Wildlife Works! – As part of Wildlife Works’ commitment to increasing the forest cover, Wildlife Works has been providing local farmers with tree seedlings and potting bags. This provides a valuable source of income for some community members and also reduces the tendency to exploit forests and animals for economic gain. https://bit.ly/2MkwvWi

International Day of the Tropics is observed on June 29 – According to the UN, the tropics account for 40 per cent of the world’s total surface area and are host to approximately 80 per cent of the world’s biodiversity and much of its language and cultural diversity.  https://bit.ly/2MCENsI

 

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

CDP – 115 organizations, including CVS Health, Target Corporation, Tesco and Walmart representing over US$3.3 trillion of spend, request environmental data from more than 11,500 global suppliers to cut supply chain emissions. https://bit.ly/2N1dpFF

 Allergies, Glaciers, Pikas: Climate Change in Action – Seas rising, wildfires spreading, allergies increasing: Climate change is measurable globally.  https://bit.ly/2tBtclS

Bloomberg’s annual New Energy Outlook (NEO) report has been released, and projects that the global energy mix will be 50% renewables by 2050 https://bit.ly/2KwuyFE

US Renewables Nearly Tied with Nuclear At 20%, Coal Falls To 27% Renewable energy sources accounted for a fifth of US power generation over the first third of 2018 according to new figures from the US Energy Information Administration ‘Electric Power Monthly‘. https://bit.ly/2MxIgJ8

Land O’Lakes, Inc. and California Bioenergy, LLC (CalBio) have launched a first-of-its-kind collaboration to support the financing, installation and management of on-farm methane digesters to generate renewable compressed natural gas (“R-CNG”) fuel in California. https://prn.to/2tMag4T

Volvo Trucks and FedEx Successfully Demonstrate Truck Platooning on N.C. 540 (Triangle Expressway) – The tractors and trailers traveled at speeds of up to 62 mph while keeping a time gap of 1.5 seconds, maintaining a closer distance than what is typical for on-highway tractors. Drag accounts for up to 25 percent of a truck’s total fuel consumption, and the closer the trucks drive to each other, the greater the fuel-saving potential. Reducing the traveling distance between vehicles also allows for greater highway utilization, helping alleviate traffic congestion.  https://bit.ly/2KhD9zQ

Housing and car industries should be ‘ashamed’ of climate record – according to Lord Deben, chair of the Committee on Climate Change (CCC). The CCC’s annual report, published on Thursday, found the UK is on track to miss its legally binding carbon budgets in 2025 and 2030, due to lack of progress in cutting emissions from buildings and transport. https://bit.ly/2KdEIih

Climate predictions should include impacts of CO2 on life –   https://bit.ly/2NdBKbJ

 

RECYCLING

Beyond 34: Recycling and Recovery for a New Economy is a first-of-its-kind multi-stakeholder pilot project aimed at increasing the current EPA-reported 34% recycling rate in the U.S. https://bit.ly/2yIHFSQ

New Polymer Ups the Ante for Recycling  A team of chemists have produced a polymer that apparently has all the benefits of today’s plastic but can be recycled an immeasurable number of times. https://bit.ly/2NdbXA2

Morrisons Supermarkets to reintroduce paper bags for fruit and veg –  https://bit.ly/2KoeRn2

China’s Recycling Ban Costing North Texas Cities Millions – Last year The City of Fort Worth’s recycling program netted $999,000. This year Fort Worth’s program is projected to lose $465,000, and next year the recycling program is expected to cost the city $1,668,000.  https://cbsloc.al/2Kzoxs1

Think you know how to recycle? Take the quiz – https://bit.ly/2IGQYSX

 

WATER STEWARDSHIP

MillerCoors, Global Water Center achieve firsts in water stewardship – SCS Global Services (SCS), a leading international third-party certifier of environmental claims, has certified that MillerCoors Milwaukee Brewery and the Global Water Center conform with the requirements of the Alliance for Water Stewardship International Water Stewardship Standard (AWS Standard), the first-ever comprehensive global standard for measuring responsible water stewardship across social, environmental and economic criteria. https://bit.ly/2yKVLDb

The World Heritage Committee decided to remove the Belize Barrier Reef Reserve System from the List of World Heritage in Danger.   https://bit.ly/2tQebfU

Argentina’s economy shrank 0.9 percent in April from the same month the year before – Treasury Minister Nicolas Dujovne has said the drought will reduce 2018 growth by 1.5 percentage points of gross domestic product (GDP) and reduce the country’s exports by hundreds of millions of dollars. https://bit.ly/2lFOqvj

Federal report: Americans conserving water like never before – In per capita terms, domestic water use has plummeted from 112 gallons per day in 1980 to just 82 gallons in 2015, a 27 percent decrease. https://bit.ly/2Kwwhyc

 

SUSTAINABILITY

The Chartered SRI Counselor (CSRIC) designation is ideal for financial professionals seeking fundamental knowledge and pertinent skills related to SRI investing and impact portfolios, in order to serve a broader network of clients as well as strengthen existing client relationships.  http://www.cffpinfo.com/web/csric.html

Will ESG Die with the Bull Market? – https://bit.ly/2lBnXiq

HOK Partners with BRE to Launch BREEAM New Construction Standard in USA – https://bit.ly/2Kkj3o0

Webinar: Reporting on the Sustainable Development Goals Thursday July 12th | 2pm BST | 3pm CET – http://events.ethicalcorp.com/reporting/webinar/

Office Depot launched their 2018 Sustainability report – Sustainability A Way of Business for Us A Resource for You.  https://bit.ly/2MssAXm

The GRI Standards on occupational health and safety (OHS) and water and effluents have been updated – https://bit.ly/2KxqfNM