Friday, 16 October 2009 15:46

Wedding Photos with Dreamtime Images

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CarbonFree® Partner Dreamtime Images is a wedding photojournalist organization.  Run by magazine and newspaper photojournalist dreamtime_images_largeNathan Welton, their style ranges from energetic and adventurous to chic and youthful.  Nathan first learned to capture life's most fleeting moments by shooting world-class rock climbers, Tour de France cyclists, and Olympic-caliber equestrian riders.  His work has appeared in Backpacker, Natural History, Scuba Diving, Practical Horseman, and many others. Besides doing the everyday things like using rechargeable batteries, electronic proofing, and recycling, Nathan decided to take the extra step and offset Dreamtime Images in order to take that important step forward.  He encourages every couple to offset their wedding with Carbonfund.org to help our transition to a clean energy future. Dreamtime Images proudly belongs to the Wedding Photojournalist Association, which hand-selects the finest documentary wedding photographers in the world (the organization only admits 5% of its applicants). The organization has awarded the studio's photos numerous awards.  After spending some time on their website, I'm truly amazed at the depth of the photos.  Planning a wedding?  Check them out.
Thursday, 15 October 2009 14:12

New Bedford Landfill Gas-to-Energy Project

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The New Bedford Landfill Gas-to-Energy project is a renewable energy project that helps reduce the amount of energy we need to produce from dirty fuel sources like coal and oil.  The benefits of this project are two-fold: not only does it flare methane, which is about 23 times more potent as New Bedforda greenhouse gas at capturing heat, it provides fuel for four reciprocating internal combustion engine-generators.  The project produces both power for the regional electricity grid and also reduces the amount of methane released into our atmosphere. The destruction of methane from these types of projects is important in the fight against climate change because methane is far more efficient as a greenhouse gas than carbon dioxide. One of the real concerns about climate change is that as the frozen tundra of areas such as Siberia and Northern Canada melt, an enormous amount of methane - which was previously trapped in the permafrost - will be released into our atmosphere. The specific environmental benefits of the New Bedford Landfill project are significantly decreased methane and carbon dioxide emissions, waste management, odor control and less localized air pollution, reduction of local water pollution, and clean energy production. This third-party verified carbon offset project meets American Carbon Registry / Environmental Resources Trust’s Monitoring, Reporting & Verification Protocol and the Chicago Climate Exchange standards.  To learn more about our renewable energy projects, please visit them here.
Tuesday, 13 October 2009 11:23

#ClimateTuesday is Here!

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#ClimateTuesday is here and we’re taking over facebook and twitter. Today is the day to invite your friends and supporters to get involved in a 350 event. Can we make #climatetuesday a trending topic? Can we double our registrations for the event? I think we can! On October 24, events are happening in over 150 nations across the world. In Botswana, the Maru-a-Pula school will be hosting a Green Drive “to change attitudes and lifestyle of our students and our community.” They will be launching a new recycling center, promoting their organic garden and a strong treaty in Copenhagen. In the Maldives, a country whose citizens will lose their homes and way of life if we don’t reach this goal, a team of divers will build an artificial reef shaped like the three numbers: 3, 5 and 0. (They've produced an awesome video.) In Washington DC, local leaders and activists will be marching to the White House to call on Obama and the nation to get a strong international treaty. Not half-measures or baby steps, but a comprehensive global deal on protecting the earth’s climate. Find an event in your area, and help us spread the word! If you are in DC and reaching out to DC folks, here’s the DC event: http://bit.ly/381tFG DC tweet: RT @Carbonfundorg: #climatetuesday action: join @350 on facebook & join events around the world on Oct. 24th ! http://bit.ly/381tFG #green #climatebill For those outside of DC, here’s the main 350 event: http://bit.ly/1pUcwZ National Tweet: RT @Carbonfundorg: #climatetuesday action: join @350 on facebook & join events around the world on Oct. 24th ! http://bit.ly/1pUcwZ #green #climatebill People talking about #climatetuesday on Twitter
Today, Venom Power announced the release of its new Eco Alkaline™ batteries. These eco-responsible batteries feature:
  • Zero mercury
  • Zero cadmium
  • Zero lead
  • Zero carbon footprint, courtesy of Carbonfund.org's product certification program, featuring the first carbon neutral label in the US.
The Venom Power Eco Alkaline batteries have been certified carbon neutral after a detailed product life-cycle assessment. The assessment tracks carbon emissions, identified areas for emissions reductions, and offset the emissions that could not be avoided - like emissions generated in the manufacturing process. Venom chose to support our Paso Pacifico Return to Forest reforestation project. Validated by the Rainforest Alliance to the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standards with Gold Distinction, the Return to Forest Project is helping to reforest as well as reconnect critical biological corridors along Nicaragua’s Pacific coast. The project also brings economic opportunities to local communities while sequestering about 170,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Venom’s Eco Alkaline batteries are progressive, high quality consumer batteries with dependable performance. The batteries will begin shipping to retailers throughout North America during the fourth quarter this year. To learn more, please visit: www.venom-group.com. Read more about our product certification program here.
Friday, 09 October 2009 11:10

Vote Ends Monday! Vote for Clean Air Lawn Care

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One of our business partners, Clean Air Lawn Care, is up for an Entrepreneur of the Year award. They're a very cool business--they use electric mowers, organic fertilizers and recycle all their clippings. Please take a second and vote for them! The Emerging Entrepreneur Award from Entrepreneur Magazine selects innovative startup businesses who stand out among their peers. After being chosen as a semi-finalist, the winner must be selected by the online community at http://www.entrepreneur.com/e2009/vote/emerging.php#432 The winner will be featured in the January ’10 and December ’10 issues of Entrepreneur Magazine. It’s a tremendous honor to be working with a company that has been selected one of the 5 semi-finalists for this award. We hope you will join us in helping to push them to the top! The contest ends on Monday, so vote now! And for those of you on twitter, please tweet this: RT @Carbonfundorg Vote Ends Monday! Help innovative green business win prestigious #Entrepreneur Award http://bit.ly/om3ao #green #eco Read the press release:
Clean Air Lawn Care Nominated for Emerging Entrepreneur 2009 Fort Collins, CO – Clean Air Lawn Care CEO, Kelly Giard, has been nominated to be Entrepreneur Magazine’s Emerging Entrepreneur of 2009! This is an incredible honor for all of Clean Air Lawn Care and a testament to the changing face of business – a commitment to being green, setting high ethical and environmental standards, and being an example to others. Clean Air Lawn Care is a lawn maintenance business that uses clean electric and biodiesel powered equipment. The vehicles hauling this equipment have mounted solar panels which charge the electric equipment during the workday. The equipment is clean and quiet; the fertilizer is organic; the business is carbon neutral. Clean Air Lawn Care is the pioneer of sustainable lawn care franchising. In the October 2008 print issue of Entrepreneur Magazine, Clean Air Lawn Care was identified as one of the top 5 green franchises in America. The January 2009 issue of Entrepreneur Magazine showcases the Franchise 500 and Clean Air Lawn Care again is listed as one of the major players in a green franchise movement. The sustainable company has been receiving other national attention as well. In May of this year, the company graced the cover of Turf Magazine, an indication that change is indeed coming to the lawn care industry. Noting the sustainable methods used by Clean Air Lawn Care, the magazine stated, “Clean Air may have a jump on competitors who are clinging to traditional techniques.” Why Sustainable Lawn Care… • 5-10% of the nation’s air pollution comes from gas powered lawn equipment. • In one hour, one gas lawn mower can pollute as much as an SUV driven 23,600 miles. • The company saves $10,000 a year on gas and spends less than $500 to charge the equipment through renewable energy. • Electric lawn mowers cut noise emissions by 50%-75%. Through the use of electric equipment powered by renewable energy, Clean Air Lawn Care removed 32,000 pounds of air pollution equaling over 1,000,000 vehicle miles in 2008. The positive impact of Clean Air Lawn Care’s business is parallel with growth. The company’s growth equals a larger reduction in national air pollution. The online vote is taking place at http://www.entrepreneur.com/e2009/vote/emerging.php#432 Watch the video and learn how Clean Air Lawn Care is starting a revolution in lawn care and changing the way America mows the lawn.
Wednesday, 07 October 2009 16:56

US Chamber Writes Bitter Letter to Departed Apple

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The US Chamber of Commerce has shown how riled up it is over the exodus of major companies from its membership rolls. In a letter to Apple CEO Steve Jobs over the company's recent departure, the Chamber's CEO, Thomas Donohue, explains the Chamber’s position on climate change. Unfortunately it merely highlights why Apple, Exelon, PG&E and Nike all oppose the Chamber on this point. Donohue complains that Apple “didn’t take the time to understand” the Chamber’s position on climate change. Apparently the Chamber’s call for a “Scopes monkey trial of the 21st century” last month on climate change actually belies their “support [for] legislation to address climate change.” According to Brad Johnson on Think Progress, the Chamber has questioned climate science since at least 1992:
2008: Chamber President Tom Donohue Says ‘Scientific Inquiry’ Into Climate Change ‘Should Continue’ Because Of ‘Cooling Trend.’ [U.S. Chamber of Commerce, 3/4/08] 2001: Chamber Claims Global Warming ‘About One Percent From Human Activity,’ Says ‘Things Just Change.’ [CNNFN, 7/16/01] 1992: Chamber Sponsors Global Warming Denier Pat Michaels To ‘Refute The Global Warming Warnings.’ [Chicago Sun-Times, 5/13/92]
The letter argues that any climate solution must defend the US economy and business competitiveness and that they “oppose legislation such as the Waxman-Markey bill that numerous studies show will cause Americans to lose their jobs.” Although, most reports have shown that the Waxman-Markey bill will increase jobs—as much as by 1.9 million jobs, according to a new analysis by economists at University of California, Berkeley. Here’s the full letter, as included in the blog of ABC's Ned Potter:
Dear Mr. Jobs: I am sorry to learn of Apple's resignation from the U.S. Chamber of Commerce. It is unfortunate that your company didn't take the time to understand the Chamber's position on climate and forfeited the opportunity to advance a 21st century approach to climate change. The U.S. Chamber of Commerce continues to support strong federal legislation and a binding international agreement to reduce carbon emissions and address climate change. Furthermore, we believe that Congress should set climate change policy through legislation, rather than having the EPA apply existing environmental statutes that were not created to regulate greenhouse gas emissions. This is also the stated position of the President and Congressional leaders. Your letter states that "Apple is committed to the environment and the communities in which we operate around the world." So is the Chamber but we are also committed to preserving the competitiveness and prosperity of the communities and businesses in our nation. While we do support legislation to address climate change, we oppose legislation such as the Waxman-Markey bill that numerous studies show will cause Americans to lose their jobs and shift greenhouse gas emissions overseas, negating potential climate benefits. An effective climate change response must include all major CO2 emitting economies, promote new technologies, emphasize efficiency, ensure affordable energy for families and businesses, and defend American jobs while returning our economy to prosperity. The American business community that we proudly represent is the single largest investor and innovator in clean energy solutions and remains committed to a strong economy and clean environment. We continue to remind the public and policymakers that it has been the private sector that has developed the innovations that we now take for granted, from the personal computer to the medicines that keep us healthy. The Chamber believes that the business community will continue to be the catalyst for reducing greenhouse gas emissions and we support efforts to tackle climate change in a way that will strengthen our economy, protect American jobs, and benefit our environment. Climate change is a global problem that requires a global solution. The Chamber supports an international agreement that will set realistic and achievable goals, ensure global participation, protect intellectual property rights and remove trade barriers to environmental goods and services. I would have hoped that Apple would have supported our efforts to improve environmental stewardship and keep Americans at work and our economy competitive. As the world's largest business federation representing more than 3 million businesses and organizations of every size, sector, and region, the Chamber is leading the way to support the innovation needed to transition to a lower carbon future, including the elimination of barriers to the deployment of clean energy technologies. Supporting innovation and technology is at the very heart of our efforts to combat climate change, and we will continue to fight for an approach that embraces their merits. It is a shame that Apple will not be part of our efforts.
Wednesday, 07 October 2009 16:33

Maldives Making Policy Under Water

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The Maldives government ministers have scheduled a Cabinet meeting at the bottom of the ocean. In an attempt to raise awareness of the acute threat to the low lying country that global warming induced sea level rise poses, the Cabinet meeting will be held 20 feet underwater.
The ministers will wear scuba gear for the gathering off the island of Girifushi — about 20 minutes journey by speed boat from the capital, Male, she said. The ministers will communicate using hand gestures and are now receiving diving lessons... At the meeting, the Cabinet plans to sign a document calling on all countries to cut down their carbon emissions ahead of the U.N. Climate Change Conference in Copenhagen in December...
The Maldives emitted about 869,000 metric tons of CO2 in 2006 - representing less than 0.1% of total global emissions. But as the lowest lying country in the world at an average height of 7 ft. above sea level, the affects of sea level rise will no doubt impact the small island nation. Though the impacts on the Maldives are clear and dramatic, a story of similar tragedy can be told for many small or poor nations. A warmer world will raise sea levels, increase heat waves, change growing regions, reduce access to clean water, and increase food scarcity. The worlds poor who have contributed the least to the cause of the problem are going to be the most severely impacted by these changes. Fight global warming now by supporting communities across the world. Click here to learn how to help today.
Tuesday, 06 October 2009 17:31

The Tengchong Conservation Carbon Project

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Carbonfund.org supports projects all across the world, and a project we are supporting is the Tengchong Conservation Carbon ProjectTeng_Chong in the Yunnan Province of Southwestern China. This project is reforesting 1,093 acres at the south end of the Gaoligongshan Nature Reserve and will ultimately sequester nearly 170,000 metric tons of carbon dioxide from our atmosphere. The Tengchong Conservation Carbon Project has had a positive effect on its surrounding environment, such as inhibiting the growth of invasive weed species, helping improve the local water quality and reduce erosion. Additionally, the project area is providing habitat for about 400 bird species and more than 150 mammals, including leopards, Malayan sun bears, and China’s only remaining Bengal tiger population. The project is the first forest-based project to be validated to the Climate, Community and Biodiversity Standard with Gold Distinction. To learn more about Carbonfund.org’s projects, please visit www.carbonfund.org/projects.
Tuesday, 06 October 2009 11:00

iQuit: Apple Leaves Chamber of Commerce

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Apple announced that it is leaving the U.S. Chamber of Commerce over its stance on global warming. The Chamber has been a source of global warming denial and has seen great backlash recently from members who consider its views to be 'extreme.' Apple is the fourth member of the Chamber to leave in recent months. Others include energy companies PG&E, PNM of New Mexico, and Chicago-based Exelon - not your typical tree hugging companies. The exit comes a month after Apple initially disclosed its corporate carbon footprint. The Chamber will likely see more members quit in the near future if their regressive views on climate change continue. Most studies, including ones performed by the Congressional Budget Office, indicate that the climate bill will help the economy over the long run. Moreover, an obstinate view that global warming isn't occurring and/or isn't man-made simply will not fly with most 21st century businesses. Businesses today deal with modern realities, which include relating to consumers that are acutely aware of the dangers of global warming and the potential adaptation of their business model to the risks of a warming world. Did you know that over 1,200 businesses have taken responsibility for their carbon footprint with Carbonfund.org? You can too! Click here for more info.
Numerous reports have linked exposure to coal ash to an increased risk of cancer, birth defects and other health problems for the communities who live close to dump sites. Last year, a slurry broke in Tennessee, dumping a billion gallons of ash into waterways, burring houses and destroying ecosystems. The spill also raised concerns in Kentucky and other areas with coal ash. Lesley Stahl looks at the health effects and the safety of coal ash in her 60 Minutes report last night on the coal industry. Stahl interviews several coal industry representatives on the impact of coal ash on human health. From refusing to say “coal ash is safe” to arguing that it’s the same as dirt, this inside look into the coal message machine and the actual damage it’s doing to the people who live close to it is a must-see. Check it out: Watch CBS News Videos Online