Earlier this month, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released their proposed Clean Power Plan.  As readers of this blog are already aware, the Clean Power Plan proposes carbon emission standards for coal-fired power plants, which are the single largest source of carbon pollution in the U.S., generating approximately one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions.  Some specifics are that under the Clean Power Plan, states must expand their energy sources and use solar (photovoltaic and solar thermal), wind, geothermal, sustainably sourced biomass, biogas, and low-impact hydrology in order to decrease their carbon emissions.

Did you know that renewable energy technologies are characteristically more labor-intensive than intensely mechanized fossil fuel technologies?  This means that the potential economic benefits may be substantial; not to mention the significant benefits for our climate and health.

The solar industry employed over 100,000 workers in jobs ranging from solar manufacturing and sales to installation according to the Solar Foundation in 2011.  Solar jobs grew by 20% percent in 2013 and 2014 is expected to create 22,000 jobs.  Furthermore, these statistics were reported before the EPA plan was released, which may further boost the renewable job sector.

Let’s look at wind energy.  The amount of domestically manufactured equipment used in wind turbines doubled from 35% in 2006 to 70% in 2011 with 560 factories directly employing 75,000 full-time employees.

The hydroelectric power industry also plays a role.  Statistics show in 2009 it employed 250,000 people.  As many as 700,000 jobs could be generated if the hydropower industry installs a new capacity of 23,000 – 60,000 megawatts (MW) by 2025.  Rounding out our look at the renewable energy sector, the geothermal industry directly employed 5,200 people in 2010.  

The Union of Concerned Scientists (UCS) estimated in 2009 that a national, renewable electricity standard attempting to cut 25% of carbon emissions by 2025 would generate 297,000 jobs, $263.4 billion in new capital investment, $13.5 billion in income to farmers, ranchers, and rural landowners, and $11.5 billion in new local tax revenues.  Remember, the EPA proposed reducing carbon emissions from existing power plants by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030.  So the potential economic benefits may increase over the UCS’s estimates.

With these figures, we’re not even taking into account a complete picture of the potential economic benefits from expanded renewable energy sources.  Think about how direct job creation leads to indirect job creation.  For example, when you hire additional employees, you may very well need a larger Human Resources staff. 

All of this comes at a time when our country could deeply benefit from economic stimulation.  The U.S. economy is still anemic, with unemployment rates remaining high, and a disturbing national debt that’s expected to reach $20 trillion by 2020.  We must embrace win-win scenarios such as these that combine healing our ailing planet with economic recovery.  It’s past time to forge the path to a low-carbon future.

Published in carbonfree blog

The big news this week is that the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) released their proposed Clean Power Plan.  Environmental groups and climate change activists have been eagerly awaiting these carbon emission standards for coal-fired power plants.

Power plants are the largest source of carbon pollution in the U.S. and generate approximately one-third of all domestic greenhouse gas emissions.  The EPA’s proposal, released Monday, will help lower carbon emissions from existing power plants by 30% below 2005 levels by 2030.

The proposed rules are the latest under President Obama’s Climate Action Plan.  The EPA is charged with proposing commonsense approaches to reduce greenhouse gas emissions from new and existing power plants. 

Last June, President Obama announced a series of executive actions to reduce carbon emissions, prepare the country for the impacts of climate change and lead international efforts to address global warming.  Learn more about the President's Climate Action plan on the White House web site.

For good or ill, climate change continues to be a politically charged issue, often dividing along party lines.  However, many companies recognize that global warming is already impacting their daily business operations and that the problem is only going to get worse if we do not take steps now to embrace a low-carbon future. 

Sustainability advocacy nonprofit Ceres coordinated letters of support for the EPA’s proposed carbon pollution rule to the Obama Administration and Senate and House majority and minority leaders from 125 companies including the likes of Unilever, VF Corporation and Mars.  The letters were also signed by 49 investors managing $800 billion in assets.

Read more about the EPA’s proposed Clean Power Plan at http://www2.epa.gov/carbon-pollution-standards/clean-power-plan-proposed-rule.

Published in carbonfree blog

Within one generation, by 2050, the U.S. can gradually and almost completely eliminate coal and nuclear power finds a new report out from Greenpeace and the Global Wind Energy Council.  The report, "Energy [R]evolution – A Sustainable USA Energy Outlook," released last week details the steps we need to take to change greenhouse gas emitting systems such as electricity, heating and transportation.  If we follow the groups' blueprint, the country is estimated to reduce carbon emissions 39% percent below 2005 levels by 2025 and 60% below 2005 levels by 2030.

This report is the latest in a series of global, national and regional Energy [R]evolution scenarios found at www.energyblueprint.info.  "The Energy [R]evolution demonstrates that transitioning to a renewable energy economy can free resources for economic development. It means more and better jobs, greater energy independence, and it is more democratic as citizens attain more control of energy production. Compared with the Energy Information Agency energy outlook, the transition to renewables creates more jobs at every stage of the energy transition, with more than 34% more jobs by 2030."

The Energy [R]evolution's goal is to, "wean the economy off dirty fuels as thoroughly and quickly as possible, and in a way that is technologically, politically, and ecologically realistic."  Although this report focuses on the United States, it is, "part of a global analysis showing how the international economy can transition to nearly 100% renewable energy by 2050, while assuming no new 'breakthrough technologies'."

Specifically, the report outlines how by 2050 renewable energy sources could provide:

  • Roughly 97% of U.S. electricity production
  • 94% of the country’s total heating and cooling demand
  • About 92% of America’s final energy demand

"The most recent National Climate Assessment makes it very clear that we need national policies to expedite a clean energy economy," said Kyle Ash, senior legislative representative for Greenpeace USA.

"Fortunately, the energy market is phasing out coal and phasing in renewable energy at a rapid pace, but this must be quickened to avoid climate consequences much worse than the wildfires, droughts, and superstorms the country is already experiencing," said Ash.

Indeed, the Energy [R]evolution sounds like a good way to start putting the brakes on global warming and engender the truly transformative change we must undertake immediately to avoid catastrophic climate change.  The time has come for us to embrace a low-carbon future.

Published in carbonfree blog

Global warming and extreme weather caused by climate change are costing companies millions finds a new report from CDP released this month. The white paper titled, Major public companies describe climate-related risks and costs says, "Each year, CDP requests climate-change-related disclosures from public companies on behalf of a growing number of institutional investors. In 2014, the request for disclosure was sent on behalf of 767 institutional investors with $92 trillion in assets. This report presents key findings and responses provided by S&P 500 companies across economic sectors to the risk-related questions in CDP's annual disclosure requests from 2011 to 2013."

Companies reported risks such as damage to facilities, reduced product demand, lost productivity and necessitated write-offs, whose totals run into the millions of dollars.

The paper goes on to say, "Findings show that S&P 500 companies assess physical risks from climate change to be increasing in urgency, with physical disruptions and cost impacts already being felt.

  • 45% of risks were described by companies as current or predicted to fall within the next 1-5 years in 2013, up from 26% in 2011

  • 50% of the risks disclosed were described as more likely than not to virtually certain in 2013, up from 34% in 2011

  • 68% of the disclosed physical risks were direct to operations in 2013, up from 51% in 2011"

This is not merely theory either. Approximately 60 companies gave examples of current and potential future risks and their associated costs in the research, including:

  • Wildfires in San Diego caused Sempra Energy’s costs to exceed its $1.1 billion of liability insurance coverage

  • Consolidated Edison’s costs related to Superstorm Sandy topped $431 million.

  • Gap reported higher material costs for cotton arising from precipitation changes and drought in China

Companies are poised to make a real difference in the fight on climate change while strengthening their bottom line. Mitigating the risks from climate change simply makes good business sense considering a study by Business for Social Responsibility published last month which says the exposure to the risks from climate change are on the rise. Some estimate the cumulative global cost could be as high as $4 trillion by 2030. The time to act is now. These costs are only going to increase the longer we delay investing in a low-carbon future.

Published in carbonfree blog

Children Make Lifetime Memories at 78 Year Old Traditional Summer Camp

(Moultonborough, NH – April 25, 2014)

Envision children having fun and playing outside all summer long, free from many of the distractions they face today. That, in a nutshell, is what Camp Quinebarge is all about. It's a traditional co-ed summer camp for 100 great kids aged 7-15, situated under a forested canopy on 65 acres in Moultonborough, NH, backing up to Red Hill and facing our 1,250 feet of crystal clean lakefront on Lake Kanasatka.

If you are interested in giving a child the opportunity to enjoy a traditional camp experience, enhanced with environmental themes and activities, the time to act is now. Space is limited and preferred sessions are filling fast. Please register by May 1, 2014. The 2014 camp season runs from June 29 - August 16.

"We're proud of Quinebarge's camper-to-staff ratio of 3:1," says Camp Director, Liz Schwartzer. "This ensures that each child receives the attention and assistance he or she needs to have a great summer. Our staff are passionate about children and dedicated to making each child's experience unique and special."

Kids don't have to look far at Camp Quinebarge to find an activity they like. Founded in 1936, there are over 20 traditional and modern, outdoor and indoor activities. All of the activities focus on nature and the environment such as archery, paddle boarding, mountain biking, sailing, swimming, hiking, camping, pottery and ceramics, a climbing wall, ropes course and zip line.

"We believe children should experience mountains and rivers and the wonderful, natural environment around them," says Eric Carlson, Carbonfund.org Foundation's President. "There are so many great places to see and challenges to explore in New Hampshire, we encourage every parent to send their child to Quinebarge this summer."

Complete online registration and download paper forms at http://campquinebarge.com/registration.

# # #

About Camp Quinebarge

Camp Quinebarge, founded in 1936, is a small, co-ed summer camp for kids aged 7 to 15, offering a traditional camp experience where children learn, grow and make everlasting friendships. Quinebarge is located in the heart of New Hampshire's Lakes and Mountains region, covering over 65 acres and boasts some of the finest camp facilities in the country where children enjoy exploring environmental themes in a fun way. Part of the Carbonfund.org Foundation’s mission is education; acquiring Camp Quinebarge extended that mission in a unique way by offering the additional dimension of an environmental learning center on top of the camp's already long and storied tradition. Quinebarge is a non-profit, independent Camp certified by the American Camp Association.

About the Carbonfund.org Foundation

The Carbonfund.org Foundation is leading the fight against global warming, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce and offset their climate impact and hasten the transition to a low-carbon future. Carbonfund.org achieves its goals through climate change education, carbon reduction projects, and public outreach.

Published in carbonfree blog

Children Make Lifetime Memories at 78 Year Old Traditional Summer Camp

(Moultonborough, NH – April 25, 2014)

Envision children having fun and playing outside all summer long, free from many of the distractions they face today. That, in a nutshell, is what Camp Quinebarge is all about. It's a traditional co-ed summer camp for 100 great kids aged 7-15, situated under a forested canopy on 65 acres in Moultonborough, NH, backing up to Red Hill and facing our 1,250 feet of crystal clean lakefront on Lake Kanasatka.

If you are interested in giving a child the opportunity to enjoy a traditional camp experience, enhanced with environmental themes and activities, the time to act is now. Space is limited and preferred sessions are filling fast. Please register by May 1, 2014. The 2014 camp season runs from June 29 - August 16.

"We're proud of Quinebarge's camper-to-staff ratio of 3:1," says Camp Director, Liz Schwartzer. "This ensures that each child receives the attention and assistance he or she needs to have a great summer. Our staff are passionate about children and dedicated to making each child's experience unique and special."

Kids don't have to look far at Camp Quinebarge to find an activity they like. Founded in 1936, there are over 20 traditional and modern, outdoor and indoor activities. All of the activities focus on nature and the environment such as archery, paddle boarding, mountain biking, sailing, swimming, hiking, camping, pottery and ceramics, a climbing wall, ropes course and zip line.

"We believe children should experience mountains and rivers and the wonderful, natural environment around them," says Eric Carlson, Carbonfund.org Foundation's President. "There are so many great places to see and challenges to explore in New Hampshire, we encourage every parent to send their child to Quinebarge this summer."

Complete online registration and download paper forms at http://campquinebarge.com/registration.

# # #

About Camp Quinebarge

Camp Quinebarge, founded in 1936, is a small, co-ed summer camp for kids aged 7 to 15, offering a traditional camp experience where children learn, grow and make everlasting friendships. Quinebarge is located in the heart of New Hampshire's Lakes and Mountains region, covering over 65 acres and boasts some of the finest camp facilities in the country where children enjoy exploring environmental themes in a fun way. Part of the Carbonfund.org Foundation’s mission is education; acquiring Camp Quinebarge extended that mission in a unique way by offering the additional dimension of an environmental learning center on top of the camp's already long and storied tradition. Quinebarge is a non-profit, independent Camp certified by the American Camp Association.

About the Carbonfund.org Foundation

The Carbonfund.org Foundation is leading the fight against global warming, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce and offset their climate impact and hasten the transition to a low-carbon future. Carbonfund.org achieves its goals through climate change education, carbon reduction projects, and public outreach.

Published in press releases

78 Year Old Traditional Summer Camp Combines Fun with Environmental Activities

(Moultonborough, NH – February 5, 2014)

Camp Quinebarge, a traditional co-ed summer camp for 100 great kids aged 7-15 located on over 65 acres of idyllic woodland and 1,250 feet of pristine Lake Kanasatka in the heart of New Hampshire's mountains and Lakes Region, is pleased to announce its 2014 rates and dates.  We’re offering an amazing First Time Camper rate of 50% off the first two-week session, just $600 per week for overnight campers, and each additional week costs $500. Please act now because families who receive discounts must be paid in full by March 15, 2014. The 2014 camp season runs from June 29 - August 16.

Part of the Carbonfund.org Foundation's mission is education; acquiring Camp Quinebarge extended that mission in a unique way by offering the additional dimension of an environmental learning center on top of the camp's already long and storied tradition.

Quinebarge offers a plethora of activities both indoors and out including popular sports like archery. All of the activities focus on nature and the environment such as swimming, boating, horseback riding, hiking, camping, arts and crafts, a ropes course and a zip line. Camp Quinebarge also serves up time-honored camp fare like camp fires, sing-a-longs, all-camp capture the flag and even some of their own homegrown traditions.

Founded in 1936, Quinebarge's traditional camp experience is enhanced with environmental themes and activities that kids love.

"Camp Quinebarge offers a unique opportunity for children to truly be immersed in the environment around them," says Eric Carlson, Carbonfund.org Foundation's President, "Quinebarge harkens to a time when kids played outdoors all day, all summer.  It's a place to make memories and friends that last a lifetime and disconnect from the outside world for a few weeks."

"Quinebarge encourages campers to challenge themselves and to try new activities in a safe and supportive setting with staff helping each child grow, learn, and achieve their goals," says Camp Director Liz Schwartzer.  "A spirit of community, cooperation and respect for nature are part and parcel of our rich tradition of camp life."

Find further rates and dates information at http://campquinebarge.com/dates-tuition/ .  Complete online registration and download paper forms at http://campquinebarge.com/registration.

Please also consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our numerous discounts and scholarships at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/camp-quinebarge-send-a-child-to-camp/x/6150500.

 #  #  #

About the Carbonfund.org Foundation

The Carbonfund.org Foundation is leading the fight against global warming, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce and offset their climate impact and hasten the transition to a low-carbon future.  Carbonfund.org achieves its goals through climate change education, carbon reduction projects, and public outreach.

Published in carbonfree blog

78 Year Old Traditional Summer Camp Combines Fun with Environmental Activities

(Moultonborough, NH – February 5, 2014)

Camp Quinebarge, a traditional co-ed summer camp for 100 great kids aged 7-15 located on over 65 acres of idyllic woodland and 1,250 feet of pristine Lake Kanasatka in the heart of New Hampshire's mountains and Lakes Region, is pleased to announce its 2014 rates and dates.  We’re offering an amazing First Time Camper rate of 50% off the first two-week session, just $600 per week for overnight campers, and each additional week costs $500. Please act now because families who receive discounts must be paid in full by March 15, 2014. The 2014 camp season runs from June 29 - August 16.

Part of the Carbonfund.org Foundation's mission is education; acquiring Camp Quinebarge extended that mission in a unique way by offering the additional dimension of an environmental learning center on top of the camp's already long and storied tradition.

Quinebarge offers a plethora of activities both indoors and out including popular sports like archery. All of the activities focus on nature and the environment such as swimming, boating, horseback riding, hiking, camping, arts and crafts, a ropes course and a zip line. Camp Quinebarge also serves up time-honored camp fare like camp fires, sing-a-longs, all-camp capture the flag and even some of their own homegrown traditions.

Founded in 1936, Quinebarge's traditional camp experience is enhanced with environmental themes and activities that kids love.

"Camp Quinebarge offers a unique opportunity for children to truly be immersed in the environment around them," says Eric Carlson, Carbonfund.org Foundation's President, "Quinebarge harkens to a time when kids played outdoors all day, all summer.  It's a place to make memories and friends that last a lifetime and disconnect from the outside world for a few weeks."

"Quinebarge encourages campers to challenge themselves and to try new activities in a safe and supportive setting with staff helping each child grow, learn, and achieve their goals," says Camp Director Liz Schwartzer.  "A spirit of community, cooperation and respect for nature are part and parcel of our rich tradition of camp life."

Find further rates and dates information at http://campquinebarge.com/dates-tuition/ .  Complete online registration and download paper forms at http://campquinebarge.com/registration.

Please also consider making a tax-deductible donation to support our numerous discounts and scholarships at http://www.indiegogo.com/projects/camp-quinebarge-send-a-child-to-camp/x/6150500.

 #  #  #

About the Carbonfund.org Foundation

The Carbonfund.org Foundation is leading the fight against global warming, making it easy and affordable for any individual, business or organization to reduce and offset their climate impact and hasten the transition to a low-carbon future.  Carbonfund.org achieves its goals through climate change education, carbon reduction projects, and public outreach.

Published in press releases