First row center, my first cousin 3x removed, Arthur Havard age 13 in 1910.

LABOR DAY – On June 28, 1884, The US Congress passed an act making the first Monday in September of each year a legal holiday. According to the US Department of Labor, “Labor Day is a creation of the labor movement and is dedicated to the social and economic achievements of American workers. It constitutes a yearly national tribute to the contributions workers have made to the strength, prosperity, and well-being of our country.”

During this Labor Day weekend, I have been reflecting on the hard work of long-gone family members that helped build a better world and whose labor surely improved the quality of life as a legacy they bequeathed to future generations.

A large portion of my ancestry hail from Northeast Pennsylvania, Wales, Scotland and Ireland where many of them worked in the coal mines or associated businesses – from miners and teamsters to managing director at Atlas Powder Company. Both of my grandfathers worked for Orange & Rockland, an electrical and gas utility in Upstate NY now owned by ConEdison.   One of my great-great grandfathers, Evan Havard, was the Barn Boss at No 6 Colliery Pennsylvania Coal Company and his cousin, Arthur Havard, pictured here at 13 years of age, worked as a miner his entire career.

The energy industry is undergoing an amazing transformation.  Increasingly, the present and promisingly, much of our future power needs will be met by energy efficiency and clean renewables.  Nationally, clean energy jobs outnumber fossil fuel jobs by more than 2.5 to 1, according to a new Sierra Club analysis of Department of Energy jobs data.

I am thankful to all of those who toiled to power our world; and I am very optimistic that collectively, we can inspire an efficiency and clean power revolution that Arthur and Evan Havard and so many other miners and fossil fuel veterans would be proud of.

Enjoy your Labor Day.

Video Headlines week of Aug 27 – Sept 2 – https://youtu.be/J5qRmnBH2Sk 1 minute, 26 seconds

 

ENERGY EFFICIENCY AND CLIMATE CHANGE

Inspiring Energy Efficiency – People.Power.Planet, a component of McKinstry’s powerED program, educates building occupants about the importance of energy efficiency and challenges them to take actions that reduce their energy use to better the planet. powerED is a systematic program designed to improve operational efficiency, save energy, track results, and drive sustainable behaviors within your facilities. https://www.peoplepowerplanet.com

Deadline extended for Atlanta solar installation program – The sign-up deadline for a solar bulk purchasing program sponsored by several local nonprofits and solar installers is being extended. The new sign-up deadline is Oct. 31. The programs uses bulk purchasing and a streamlined process over four months to cut the cost of solar by up to 25 percent for Atlanta residents.  https://bit.ly/2wm2or7

Europe To Ban Halogen Bulbs in September – LED’s are five times more energy efficient than halogens and last 15 to 20 years compared with the average two-year life cycle of a halogen bulb, a recent Forbes article says the European Commission estimates consumers will actually enjoy a savings of 115 Euros over the lifetime of an LED bulb, or close to $150.  https://bit.ly/2PV1MSe

How Much Hotter is Your Hometown Than When You Were Born?  As the world warms because of human-induced climate change, most of us can expect to see more days when temperatures hit 90 degrees Fahrenheit (32 degrees Celsius) or higher. See how your hometown has changed so far and how much hotter it may get.  https://nyti.ms/2N58JBr

Nation’s 1st Pollinator-Friendly Right-of-Way Solar Project Moves Forward in Georgia –  Last week, the Georgia Public Service Commission (Georgia PSC) authorized the funding for Georgia Power to construct, own and operate a one-megawatt solar array on Georgia Department of Transportation (Georgia DOT) property at Exit 14 off Interstate 85, which is known as “The Ray.” This unique project will pilot the use of native flowering plants as ground cover in test plots within the solar array, making Georgia the first in the nation to pilot pollinator-friendly, right-of-way solar.  https://bit.ly/2NFPw6A

A New Kind of Solar Cell Developed at UCLA Just Broke Efficiency Records – By adding a new layer to common solar cells, the researchers estimate they can reduce solar energy costs by about a fifth, in a relatively simple process that can easily be incorporated into mainstream solar cell manufacturing. Instead of 18.7 percent, these new cells were able to capture 22.4 percent of the sunlight’s energy, an increase of around 20 percent. https://bit.ly/2PoLyja

Question Of The Week: Has Your ENERGY STAR Score Changed? – As of August 26, 2018, facility managers and building owners who benchmark one or more properties in Portfolio Manager should be aware that their buildings’ 1–100 ENERGY STAR scores and other source energy metrics have been updated across all time periods to reflect the latest performance metrics. https://bit.ly/2Npoxfu

Exxon Seeks Wind, Solar Power Delivery in Texas – The largest U.S. oil company sent out a request for proposals with a June 8 deadline, inviting solar or wind power suppliers to pitch contracts that would last 12, 15 or 20 years. https://bloom.bg/2Nh5Avm

What is the Global Cooling Prize? – a global competition to spur development of a radically more energy efficient cooling technology. The task, designing a room air conditioner for a typical tropical or sub-tropical home that consumes five times (5x) less grid-supplied electricity, per unit of cooling, than a typical unit in operation today. The prize will be launched in November 2018 and will be open for a period of two years. https://bit.ly/2NEaWBd

Could EVs Be the Secret to a 100% Renewable Grid? – Using real-time rates, utilities could encourage EV owners to charge up during the day, when there is excess (and therefore cheap) solar energy and sell back to the grid during times of high demand. https://bit.ly/2C6wHrZ

Facebook Pledges to Buy 100% Renewable Energy by 2020 – https://bit.ly/2Nxpylv

Pearl’s certification system enables home buyers to see and understand the value of a home’s high-performing assets when the home is sold. Research from across the U.S. shows that third-party home performance certifications like Pearl’s add an average of 4% to the sale price of high-performing homes, compared to similar homes lacking these assets. https://bit.ly/2wu8fvg

Salesforce Announces Largest Renewable Energy Agreement to Date, on Path to Achieving 100 Percent Renewable Energy – https://bit.ly/2opvBOe

California Assembly Passes 100% Renewables by 2045 Mandate – The bill now heads to the state Senate for a vote.   https://bit.ly/2wv1B8g

Xcel to Replace 2 Colorado Coal Units with Renewables and Storage – https://bit.ly/2C80CQr

 

WATER STEWARDSHIP

FAO Report Presents Global Baseline Data for Monitoring Water-use Efficiency – https://bit.ly/2PRXkDG

Study: Meeting Paris Climate Accord goal would result in 217m metric tons more fish – The world’s oceans could produce 217 million more metric tons of fish, 25 billion additional servings of seafood, and $14 billion more in profits to the seafood industry if the goal of the Paris Climate Accord was reached and good fishery management practices were maintained, finds a study published in Science Advances.  https://bit.ly/2wzUCtK

Ocean and climate change: Time for a new wave of energy – by Karmenu Vella, EU Commissioner for Environment, Maritime Affairs and Fisheries – https://bit.ly/2LOJ7V3

Measure home water use and detect leaks – Phyn Plus Smart Water Assistant + Shutoff Phyn Plus measures tiny changes in water pressure — 240 times a second — to alert you the moment a leak is detected, mitigate costly damage through automatic shutoff, and diagnose potential plumbing problems before they become an issue. https://bit.ly/2wynCD6

World Water Week: Seven ways businesses are progressing water stewardship – https://bit.ly/2MIXfEn

More crop per drop: How UGA is redefining water sustainability in agriculture  Researchers at the University of Georgia College of Agricultural and Environmental Sciences are aiming to help farmers make smarter decisions about their water use through advancements in irrigation techniques. The project aims to combat the looming water crisis that plagues the South and Southwest. “Everybody’s using the water, and the resources are getting depleted very quickly,” UGA CAES professor George Vellidis said. Vellidis and a team of graduate students and researchers are seeking to increase agricultural sustainability and productivity through their research project. The project aims to use fresh water resources more sustainably in order to optimize crop yield for Georgia’s largest commodities, such as peanuts and cotton.  https://bit.ly/2MEDIFj

Ceres’ Assessment of S&P 500, MSCI World, MSCI Emerging Markets (EM) and Russell 3000 – shows more than 50 percent of the four indices holdings were found to be exposed to medium to high water risks, showing that water can be a very material issue for portfolio managers. https://bit.ly/2wCg55r

 

DEFORESTATION

Is Nigeria Losing War Against Deforestation? – While it is estimated that Nigeria loses 1.5 million trees daily due to illegal logging, the rate of deforestation pegged at 3.5 per cent annually is considered as the highest globally. https://bit.ly/2MPo09F

 

RECYCLING

Cobb County, GA conducts survey on plastics recycling – Keep Cobb Beautiful staff is asking Cobb residents, who want to participate in the Hefty EnergyBag program, to sign up as soon as possible. Survey: CobbCounty.seamlessdocs.com/f/HEBprogram Information: hefty.com/hefty-energybag/hefty-energybag-program  https://on-ajc.com/2wjhKxo

Government Regs and Consumer Awareness Drive Bioplastic Packaging Market – Government regulations and rising awareness of sustainable packaging solutions among both consumers and manufacturers will drive significant growth of the bioplastic packaging market, according to a new report. The global bioplastic packaging market is expected to grow at a pace of 18.1% between 2017 and 2025, the report from The Insight Partners. Bioplastics are plastics made from plants rather than fossil fuels.  Coca-Cola has sold more than 50 billion of its bioplastic-based PlantBottles. But the food and beverage industry can’t drive the market alone, the company says: retailers need to increase demand for bioplastics to really make the market thrive. “It won’t ever work if there’s just one big consumer company like a Coca-Cola trying to drive suppliers,” said Ben Jordan, head of environmental policy at Coca-Cola. “You need more demand out there in industry.” While bioplastics currently make up just 1% of the plastics market.  https://bit.ly/2C7Xc03

U.K. Considers Doubling Levy on Plastic Bags to Tackle Waste – The U.K. is proposing to double the mandatory charge for single-use plastic bags dispensed by retailers to 10 pence (13 cents). https://bloom.bg/2PqNCHA

Earth911 Quiz #25: Recycling Changes Build Momentum – This week’s quiz challenges your knowledge of recent recycling changes in Asia and the U.S. recycling industry. https://bit.ly/2MJlP8m

Registration for 2018 America Recycles Day Now Open – America Recycles Day, which takes place on and in the weeks surrounding Nov. 15, educates people about the importance of recycling to our economy and environmental well-being, and helps to motivate occasional recyclers to become everyday recyclers. Registration for Recycle-Bowl is also open at http://www.recycle-bowl.org.  https://bit.ly/2PaQMPj

Video – Canadians get creative in solving food waste problem – CBC News spoke to several businesses to see how they’re developing creative solutions and technology to reduce the tons of food that end up in landfills.  https://bit.ly/2MDAvFO

Webinar: How brands can drive sustainable innovation in plastics and packaging – Thursday 6th September at 9am EDT / 2pm. You can sign up here: https://bit.ly/2okCHUf

 

SUSTAINABILITY

How to fight modern slavery: question company supply chains – Today, there are more than 40 million people suffering in some form of modern slavery. Modern slavery is a lucrative, US$150 billion industry. And it’s hidden in plain sight. While most firms mandate formal anti-money-laundering training, they’re far less likely to do so for identifying slave labour and human trafficking.  https://bit.ly/2MRaORy

SIERRA CLUB Annual Cool School Ranking – Our annual Cool Schools Rankings assess colleges’ performance in everything from what they teach to how they obtain their electricity to their sources of cafeteria food and how they manage their water.  https://bit.ly/2wttxbB

This Company Is Making Footwear Out of Wool, Sugar and Trees – https://bit.ly/2My2Ttd

Quantis and EIT Climate-KIC Launch the GeoFootprint Project to Develop a Tool to Measure and Monitor Environmental Impacts of Crops https://bit.ly/2BMbKlX

How Can Retailers Keep Ugly Produce Out of Trash? Paying You A Compliment Helps, Study Finds https://bit.ly/2C5L9QM

Turning Haiti’s mountains of plastic garbage into high-tech printer gear – Last June, HP started selling the first ink cartridges made from Haiti’s bottles.  https://bit.ly/2CQ1Zjo

Fledge is a global network of conscious company accelerators and seed funds, helping entrepreneurs create impactful companies and co-ops at scale through intense, short programs filled with education, guidance, and a massive amount of mentorship.  http://fledge.co/about/

Impact Investing Market Map – PRI launched the Impact Investing Market Map. Its goal is to bring more clarity to the process of identifying mainstream impact investing companies and thematic investments so that asset owners and fund managers can better assess opportunities in this market.  https://www.unpri.org/download?ac=5292

How Do You Assess a Fund’s Carbon Risk? – The Carbon Risk Score is a new metric that is based on underlying information from Sustainalytics, our ESG data provider, that is trying to assess a company’s risk in relationship to the transition to a low carbon economy. It primarily focuses on carbon emissions in a company’s operations and in its products and tries to assess what kind of financial risk does this company face in a transition that would cause them to have to reduce emissions significantly. About 100 out of 500 funds in the large-cap blend category get a low carbon designation, meaning, on average, their portfolios have low carbon risk. https://bit.ly/2ox2VTA

Now Available: 6-Pack Rings Touted as Eco-Friendly & Safer for Wildlife – Eco Six Pack Rings (E6PR), are made with all-natural ingredients, including straw and wheat fiber. https://bit.ly/2PXh4Wr

Member Spotlight: Stephanie Valdez Streaty of Cox Automotive wants to talk with you about recycling car floor mats and other ways to achieve zero waste – https://bit.ly/2MK6Uur

From the deforestation of the Peruvian Amazon to a ‘lake of toxic sludge’ in China: How building a smartphone devastates planet Earth – https://dailym.ai/2Nb78ds