Friday, 15 January 2010 14:47

Video: Climate and Energy Policy Year in Review

Written by
2009 was a historic year for climate change action, as the US House of Representatives passed climate change legislation, and Senators introduced possible legislation in their chamber. The EPA ruled that greenhouse gases are pollutants that should be regulated under the Clean Air Act. One of the year-in-review videos is by the American Clean Skies Foundation in this 4 minute video.
Thursday, 14 January 2010 18:51

The Sunchaser Challenge Goes CarbonFree®

Written by
Sunchaser Challenge mediumThe nation’s premier race to support endangered species has gone CarbonFree®.  Working with Wild Ones Promotions, Carbonfund.org has calculated the carbon footprint of all 4 North American races, including travel to the locations, hotel stays at the races and any equipment used at the races themselves.  To make these races CarbonFree® Wild Ones Promotions is donating $1 for every competitor. This donation will support Carbonfund.org’s reforestation projects. The Sunchaser Challenge begins at sunrise on May 22, 2010.  Thousands of competitors in four different locations in the United States will run, mountain bike, kayak, cycle, and navigate their way to rescue 50 different animals before sunset.  At checkpoints throughout the race, participants will need to collect representations of different endangered animals, and the solo or team entrant who collects the most wins a prize.  By raising awareness of endangered species and donating money to wildlife charities, the Sunchaser Challenge is at the forefront of protection efforts in the United States. Truly fulfilling its mission to protect the environment, the Sunchaser Challenge has made a commitment to make sure it is as sustainable as possible.  Registrations are being completed online, recycling stations will be set up throughout the race locations, participants are encouraged to bring old running shoes to recycle at the race, organic food and drinks are being made available at the race, and serving ware that will be used are biodegradable and recyclable. Registration is filling up quickly for the events located in Saranac Lake, NY; Lake Geneva, WI; Lake Havasu, AZ; and North Lake Tahoe, CA.  Wherever you are in the country, there’s a race in your time zone.  Give the race a try – raise some money for endangered species and see if you can be this year’s top scorer! Go to www.sunchaserchallenge.com now to find out more and join the Sunchasers!
Thursday, 14 January 2010 18:44

Funds for Forest Conservation

Written by
Carbon financing has saved over 2 million hectares of forest and channeled hundreds of millions of dollars towards forest projects over the last twenty years. This has helped to preserve tens of millions of trees, improve animal habitats, and sequestered millions of tons of CO2. Ecosystem Marketplace released a new report today entitled, State of the Forest Carbon Markets 2009: Taking Root & Branching Out, that details the history of the forest carbon markets and the great progress that was made in 2009. The report outlines trends in the market, and notes recent upswings in activity. Carbonfund.org has a long history of supporting forest-based carbon offset projects. Currently, Carbonfund.org supports projects in Louisiana, Nicaragua, Brazil, and China that are reducing carbon and improving local environments. Deforestation and forest degradation account for around 20% of global warming causing greenhouse gas emissions -- more than the global transportation sector. Forest-based carbon reduction projects actually sequester emissions (or take carbon dioxide out of the atmosphere) and have been an effective way to help balance out these emissions. The projects Carbonfund.org supports also help protect or restore habitats, preserve biodiversity and have other benefits for the environment and local communities.
Tuesday, 12 January 2010 17:41

Ship Greener with ClickShipNGo.com!

Written by

ClickShipNGoClickShipNGo.com is an online provider of shipping management services for individual consumers and small businesses. Users can retrieve and compare freight quotes from competing carriers, schedule pickups and track shipments online, generate required paperwork, and manage their total shipping needs in an easy and affordable manner. Due to their large buying power, they pass the savings directly to their customers which would not be possible by going directly to the carrier.

In addition to offering an effective shipping management service, ClickShipNGo.com is a CarbonFree® Shipping Partner and makes a donation to Carbonfund.org for every package they ship to reduce, offset its carbon emissions.  If you need to ship a package, or own a business and are looking for an environmentally-friendly provider, choose ClickShipNGo.com.  Just by using their service, your package will not only be shipped at an affordable price, but it will generate a donation that supports third-party validated carbon reduction projects that fight climate change today.  You can visit their website at www.clickshipngo.com.
As many drivers know, the price of gasoline has been steadily rising for some time now. Gas is now up to $2.74, up 1.4 cents from last night and $0.95 cents from this time last year. As gas prices inch closer and closer to $3 in time for the spring travel season (at least that is what some experts are predicting) the dialog over fuel consumption will likely increase. How can we do more with less, and why do we keep on running into these same problems? Energy shocks and oil crises are nothing new and come about cyclically. Gas prices go up and people start to drive less, interest in more efficient vehicles rises, and consumption goes down. This follows basic economic principles of supply and demand, although some have expressed strong concerns about speculation in markets. Nobody should be shocked to see gas prices inching back up. The US consumes nearly 20 million barrels of oil a day - causing us to put massive amounts of pressure on a finite resource. Moreover, even slight changes in supply can have ripple effects that cause prices of oil and gas to fluctuate dramatically. A viable solution is efficiency. It took the US a long time to address fuel efficiency as this chart shows. While Congress has taken action through improving fuel efficiency standards, the vehicles produced presently vary quite a degree in their fuel efficiency. Some vehicles have substantially better fuel efficiency. Technology exists to help, but it takes commitment by auto makers and consumers alike to make fuel efficient vehicles the norm rather than the exception. As gas prices rise this spring and you are paying more at the pump, think about the future and the most sustainable way to curb rising fuel prices. We must demand action from our nation's leaders to continue to improve fuel efficiency standards, while making fuel efficient vehicles- and choosing fuel efficient vehicles.
Monday, 11 January 2010 17:37

The Cable Show 2010 Goes CarbonFree®

Written by
CableShow2010 logoThe Cable Show 2010, the cable telecommunications industry’s premier annual conference, has gone CarbonFree®.  In addition to being the place to be for technology companies and content providers to exhibit the latest they have to offer, The Cable Show may well be one of the greenest places to be in Los Angeles in May.  By working with Carbonfund.org, the National Cable & Telecommunications Association (NCTA) has calculated their conference’s carbon footprint and instituted a program toward offsetting that footprint. NCTA is offsetting The Cable Show’s emissions from employee travel, hotel stays, meals and the LA Convention Center. By supporting Carbonfund.org’s high quality third-party validated carbon reduction projects, The Cable Show 2010 has become an environmental leader among conventions.  Further, exhibitors and attendees can contribute to offset the carbon footprint associated with their Cable Show participation.  Attendees will have option as they register for the event. The Cable Show 2010, May 11-13 in Los Angeles, CA, will bring together leaders from the entertainment, technology and media sectors for three days of engaging panel discussions, cutting-edge exhibit displays, special conferences and exclusive events.  Last year over 12,000 people attended.  Next year, will you be there? Want to learn more about CarbonFree® events? Click Here!

Green Edventures logoDo you worry about the impact your travel has on the environment and on local communities?  Do you enjoy learning about local customs and local environmental conditions when you travel?  When you take a trip with Green Edventures, they’ve got you covered.  Offering three educational adventures in the spring and summer of 2010, Green Edventures gives you the best of all worlds.  All three trips employ local guides, well versed in the local cultures and environmental problems.  Furthermore, these trips are carbon neutral through Green Edventures’ partnership with Carbonfund.org.

From frolicking with sea lions, snorkeling in a coral reef, and trekking breathtaking desert vistas in Mexico, to glacier hiking and sea kayaking in Alaska, Green Edventures provides options for different interests.  Green Edventures focuses on the three “e” values:  education, environment and empowerment to inspire people to become active environmental citizens.  On a green edventure, you learn from knowledgeable local guides about pressing environmental issues, like how climate change affects Alaska’s wilderness, overfishing in Baja California, and invasive plant species in Kenai Fjords National Park.

If you’re interested in attending a teacher-led Green Edventure, please visit their website at www.GreenEdventures.com.  The trips are filling up, so you'll want to sign up soon.

Saturday, 09 January 2010 13:08

New Year's Resolutions: Make 2010 Carbon Neutral

Written by
img00002Please consider making 2010 a carbon neutral year. This could be your resolution that makes not only a positive impact on your life and those around you, but the lives of all by helping to fight global warming. It's a critical year-- will the US make good on its promises to take concerted action on global warming by passing strong climate legislation? Will the world take the Copenhagen UN Climate Conference to the next level by acting on stated goals? Individual action, whether by an individual, a group, family, or a business or organization matters more than ever to reduce greenhouse gas emissions. Action also shows you support a clean energy future, and environmental sustainability in pursuing economic growth in our country and abroad. If you've never calculated your carbon footprint before, consider doing so today. It's easy. Learn how to reduce your carbon footprint and offset the rest to be carbon neutral today. By offsetting, you balance out the emissions you can't avoid by supporting third-party validated carbon reduction projects in renewable energy, energy efficiency and/or reforestation. Carbonfund.org lets you choose the type of project to support. You can do all this at Carbonfund.org's website. Click here to get started. The average carbon footprint of an American is about 24 metric tons a year, or 50,000 pounds of CO2 a year! So take action today on your carbon footprint. A simple preset option that Carbonfund.org offers is ZeroCarbon™ to offset your carbon footprint in support of carbon reduction projects. The option is available for both individuals and families at Carbonfund.org's carbon calculator. If you're affiliated with or run a business, be sure to check out Carbonfund.org's business calculator and preset options. You can make 2010 a carbon neutral year. Get started today!
Friday, 08 January 2010 15:38

Textbook Rentals: Saving Money and Trees!

Written by
Skoobit is a great alternative to buying textbooks for cash-strapped college students.  Instead of buying books you only use once to sell back at Skoobita fraction of their original price, why not rent them instead for a huge discount?  Skoobit has an enormous inventory of textbooks and other college-level books that will meet the needs of your classes.  There's no limit on the number of textbooks you can rent and you can hold onto them for the entire semester. Not only can renting used books be better for the environment, Skoobit offsets every shipment of books that it sends out to its customers with Carbonfund.org.  It's better for your wallet and better for the environment.  But what happens if you decide you want to keep a book during your rental?  No problem!  Skoobit gives you the option of purchasing the book if you feel it will benefit you in the future. This semester you could save hundreds of dollars and rent textbooks with Skoobit.  The environment, and your bank account, will thank you.  Don't forget to offset your travel back to campus!
Thursday, 07 January 2010 16:59

It's Cold Outside! Is Global Warming -Really- Over?

Written by
Most people in the Northern Hemisphere are deep within the clutches of winter's cold. Washington, DC (where I live) received record levels of snow in December, and January has been cold enough to keep me indoors more than I care to admit. This same story is playing out all over the United States. With the cold - crops in the Southeast that are not accustomed to the cold are freezing, and the normally adept American heartland is coping with wind chills that are dipping well into negative figures. So what is the deal? Did we already solve the climate crisis with reductions and carbon offsets? Does this prove that global warming was never happening in the first place? Unfortunately, the answer to these questions is no. While your actions to reduce your carbon footprint today are immensely important, there is a lot more work to be done as the existence of cold weather does not disprove the existence of man-made global warming. Even in a warming world, there will still be winter and there will still be seasons. It is easy to forget those hot summer days when it is 10 degrees outside, but it doesn't mean that the summer wasn't hot. The easiest to understand write-up (that I found) about this cold winter is offered to us by the Christian Science Monitor Bright Green Blog. To paraphrase the three reasons why cold weather doesn't negate global warming (and I highly suggest going over to read the piece):
  1. It's not actually that cold - it is cold right now, but it is not like every place is setting record lows. Some might even say that winters like this are more like the winters we used to have; but due to a recent string of warmer than average winters this one just feels colder.
  2. Some places are really hot right now- Australia and New Zealand are currently in the midst of record heat waves, and Bulgaria is close to 72 degrees right now. The 2000s were the hottest decade on record, with the 1990s closely trailing. In fact, over the last ten years, the only continent to not experience warmer than average temperatures was North America.
  3. Nobody said it would never get cold again - Winter is supposed to be colder than Summer - and a cold streak is perfectly reasonable in winter. But with global warming, the incidence of record cold days to record warm days has shown a measurable and significant drop over the last 60 years.
There are other reasons for why this cold weather doesn't mean an end to global warming explained in the article that I do encourage you to read. My take on the weather is two fold:
  1. People have short-term memories - it is hard to remember the summer heat when you are bundled up, your toes are cold and your nose is running like a faucet.
  2. People confuse weather with climate - it is nearly impossible to link any single weather event to global warming - hot or cold, catastrophic or normal - there are just too many factors at play. So one cold streak doesn't disprove global warming just like one warm streak doesn't prove it. The best measures of the climate come from scientific analysis and from observing long term trends.
Remember this winter as you are judiciously using your furnace to stay warm that this doesn't mean that the climate has been saved. It is still our responsibility to fight global warming and to reduce what we can, and offset what we can't.