Greg Taylor

Greg Taylor

As the world prepares for the upcoming climate meeting in Copenhagen set to begin next week, another group of world leaders is already debating how to stop the climate crisis.  Children from around the world, numbering over 160 youth from over 40 countries, are in the middle of climate negotiations in Copenhagen.  UNICEF and the city of Copenhagen have brought them to Denmark to give voice to children around the world.  Who better to influence environmental discussions than those who stand to inherit the world? These youth leaders-- including Becca Arbacher, a Carbonfund.org neighbor and Montgomery Blair High School sophomore in Silver Spring, MD-- are discussing the best ways to fight climate change.  They have also paid special attention to the impact climate change has on children.  As the Convention on the Rights of the Child turns 20 years old, the connection between climate change and children has never been clearer.  The world’s youth stand to benefit the most from early action or suffer the most from our inaction.  At the end of the conference, the Children’s Climate Forum will adopt a final resolution with recommendations for action on climate change.  For the sake of the world, we hope that world leaders will pay heed to these recommendations. Here at Carbonfund.org we believe that the world needs to make a firm commitment to reign in carbon emissions. With the help of individuals, businesses, and organizations, Carbonfund.org is offsetting over 5 billion pounds of CO2. I hope you’ll join us in wishing Becca and the rest of her youth delegates good luck in their deliberations.  The world depends on their work and the work of leaders of all ages around the world. You can follow the US delegation of young leaders on their blog.
Wednesday, 25 August 2010 15:59

Five Ways to "Brighten" Your Life

Our partner Viva-Lite shares their perspective with us in a guest blog this week. If you haven’t checked out their full spectrum lights yet, make sure you do. They make a huge difference in your mood, your health, your productivity and the way you work. Below, Viva-Lite’s founders offer their top five places to switch to full spectrum lights and brighten your life: 1. Offices and factories [caption id="attachment_5652" align="alignright" width="300" caption="Good lighting is crucial in the print and design industries. © Gerard J. Corts"][/caption] Are you in charge of people who are spending the majority of their day under artificial light? Then you may want to investigate the difference that full-spectrum lighting can make to their health and performance. 2. Farmers, especially poultry farmers, zoos and animal houses Birds are especially affected by the quality of light in their living environments. In the absence of direct sunlight, full-spectrum lighting can help birds and other animals thrive. 3. Nurseries and greenhouses Plants are sensitive to the quality of light that surrounds them. Poor quality light can limit their growth and productivity. Where plants don't have access to true sunlight you can use full-spectrum lighting to get better results than ordinary artificial light. [caption id="attachment_5653" align="alignright" width="300" caption="For people who spend the majority of their day at a computer, full-spectrum li ghting can improve performance. © Gerard J. Corts"][/caption] 4. Graphic design, photography and print industries In an industry that prizes aesthetics and accuracy, lighting is crucial. Artificial light replicates only a portion of the sun's spectrum meaning that the colors you see under artificial light will differ from what you would see under sunlight (or full-spectrum light). Consider changing your lights to full-spectrum lighting. 5. Your home To brighten your home and keep your family cheerful, consider installing full spectrum lighting in your house’s well trafficked rooms. Viva-Lite invites anyone who is interested in how light affects all our lives to subscribe to their free educational newsletter or to visit their website today.
Tuesday, 02 February 2010 20:05

Be My Valentine: Drexelius Chocolates

12 days til Valentine's Day! There are only twelve days to Valentine’s Day and you still don’t have chocolate to give to that special someone. What are you going to do? Luckily, Drexelius chocolate is here to help! Drexelius serves up some of the most delicious chocolates around. If your love is anything like me, they’ll love the Divine Dark Gift Set. Or try something a little more romantic with the Chocolate and Wine Pairing Kit. Perhaps you’d rather have what Best Life Magazine calls the Best Chocolate on the Planet. Drexelius has made its entire operations carbon neutral through a partnership with Carbonfund.org. Further, Molly Drexelius explains that “our chocolate makers not only make delicious chocolate, but work hard to create a better environment, living and future for the cacao farmers and our world.” So pick up some Valentine’s Day treats at Drexelius chocolates today. If you use Carbonfund.org’s exclusive promo code “DCLOVECF” you’ll get 15% off your first order! (Offer expires 2/14/2010.)

2 Days til Valentine's Day!

CarbonFree® Partner Barbara Thomas Wines has been providing America’s Pacific Northwest with some of the best locally grown wine around. More than that, they do it with the environment in mind. As a member of Oregon’s Carbon Neutral Challenge, Barbara Thomas Wines has completely offset its carbon footprint by investing in Carbonfund.org’s third-party validated reforestation projects. These projects plant native species in biodiverse regions. By planting trees now, we are taking immediate action to fight climate change. Jacki Bessler and Chuck Perasso have been growing their wines since 2005. Because of their commitment to the environment and their land, they have named Barbara Thomas Wines after their two children: Barbara and Thomas. As they say, “Our family believes that we are stewards, not owners, of our farm. It is our hope and our vision to protect and sustain this small patch of earth for many generations to come.” Keep an eye out for Barbara Thomas Wines in a local shop near you.
Thursday, 10 September 2009 12:15

Now it's Your Turn to Talk

Here at Carbonfund.org we like to hear what our donors have to say. It helps us in the office keep perspective on why we’re doing what we’re doing. And our donors come from a broad range of perspectives. Some were concerned about climate change’s negative impacts and wanted to do the right thing. Others felt guilty about their pollution and chose to support our high quality projects as a way to offset their activities. Still others were spurred by our partners’ actions, donating after seeing Amtrak, Dell, or JetBlue’s actions to fight climate change. Take a look at a selection of comments we received this week. Maybe next week, we’ll highlight your comment! “Admittedly, I'm being selfish to fly around as much as I do. Your group gives me a means to balance my negative actions with positive actions.” “I feel very strongly that we as individuals should try and offset our carbon footprint. I work for an environmental consulting company and take pride in what I can do to help our environment.” “I was given the option when buying my Amtrak ticket. I'd like life on earth to continue longer.” “I work for the American Geophysical Union (www.agu.org) which publishes much of the climate change research. I think it's important that we walk the talk.” “My brother wanted carbon offsets for his birthday present.” “Polar Bears etc.” “The wedding offset is a great idea!” “We at NMD, Inc feel it is very important to leave a legacy for future generations.” “We've reduced our footprint significantly with public transit, but long distance travel is still an energy drain. Glad to know we have the option of “off-setting” where we are unable to eliminate our carbon footprint.”
Global Basecamps, a Carbonfund.org partner, has dedicated itself to providing travelers with fun, diverse and sustainable vacations. Travelers can set up a basecamp in one location and explore different places in a short period of time. Global Basecamps has identified ways to help reduce a trip’s impact on the environment.
  1. Plant a Tree When You Travel – Planting a tree is a way to fight climate change (about 20% of global warming is due to deforestation), restore habitat and preserve biodiversity. Global Basecamps plants a tree in Nepal for every vacation they book.
  2. Offset Your Trip’s Carbon Footprint - Flying, driving, lodging, eating and everything you do on your trip has an impact on climate change. The only way to neutralize that impact on climate (short of not traveling) is to offset your footprint by supporting third-party validated carbon reduction projects. Calculate and offset your trip here.
  3. Support Local Charities at Your Destination – Global Basecamps is a strong supporter of Pack for a Purpose. You can choose a local charity at your destination and help their mission by donating some of your money or items such as pencils, medical supplies or soccer balls.
  4. Basecamp – Get a true flavor of the locations you visit by basecamping. Choose a central base and explore many places in a short trip. This can cut your carbon footprint and provide a great experience at the same time.
  5. Commit to Live Sustainably When You Get Home – Take the lessons of your trip home with you. Volunteer when you get back. You can also offset your vehicle and home carbon emissions to reduce your overall footprint.
For more information on how Global Basecamps makes sustainability central to their mission, click here.
Carbonfund.org Partner GreenEcoSavers has now added GreenQuest, a free personal energy information website that combines information on energy spending, weather data, greenhouse gas emissions and energy use for your building. Developed in conjunction with EnergyCAP, their GreenQuest tool also calculates a home or facility’s carbon footprint (remember to offset with Carbonfund.org what you can't reduce). GreenQuest from GreenEcoSavers is providing tracking up to 3 meters (electricity, water and gas) for free with the help of green sponsors. By using the GreenQuest energy information website, homes and businesses can benefit by setting goals and benchmarks.  Depending on your home or business location, GreenQuest will tell you how your energy usage compares with your friends and neighbors and help you get on the right track to saving money and energy.  You can easily aggregate all of your energy usage data and as an option, obtain an ENERGY STAR building rating (for commercial buildings). You can also share your results on a public, read-only website to showcase your energy conservation efforts. I signed up my downtown DC condo this afternoon–it just takes a few minutes once you have your utility bills.  I can see how my energy usage changes over time and how it interacts with the weather.  I’m excited to add my first energy savings project (which can run the gamut from changing your lightbulbs to adding solar panels) and see how fast I earn my investment back!
Nevada’s only accredited art museum takes its premier annual event to a new, greener level. The Annual Taste for Art, the Nevada Museum of Art fundraiser that connects art, wine and food enthusiasts with fantastic art and cuisine, is offsetting the event's carbon footprint in support of third-party validated carbon reduction projects. Also, a tree will be planted for each paid ticket. Taking place August 20th from 6-9 pm in Reno, this year’s event is sure to please in all senses. Tickets are still available online – $65 for members and $75 for non-members. If I were in Reno, I know where I’d be next Friday. If you can’t make it out to the Taste for Art, be sure to take a look at the museum’s premier exhibits from your computer screen.
Alima Pure is featuring their leading line of eye shadow for Earth Day this year. Each color of the Cascadia Collection is named after an Oregon Natural Beauty. So whether your color is Columbia Gorge, a vibrant gold named after the 80-mile Columbia Gorge, or Wallowas, a gentle green from the “Oregon Alps,” you can be sure that when you wear Alima Pure products, you’re sporting eco-friendlier products. All Alima Pure products are certified natural, and cruelty-free. And now for the second straight year, Alima Pure is a Carbonfund.org CarbonFree® Partner. By packing their products in recyclable shipping materials and other actions to reduce their carbon footprint, Alima Pure has taken great steps to reduce what it can, offset what it can't. If you’re looking for a beautiful and eco-friendly Earth Day gift, check out Alima Pure’s Cascadia Collection.
Transportation Management Services, one of the leading transportation experts, excels in business by excelling in sustainability. Celebrating its 15th anniversary this year, TMS has again proven its model of measuring success by its environmental as well as bottom line performance.  In February, the Maryland-based company earned accolades for successful execution of transportation plans for this year’s NBA All-Star game in Dallas, TX. Despite record low temperatures, even snow and large crowds, TMS maintained its high level of punctual service for the event. On Earth Day, TMS built upon its successful green roof planting last year by adding a vegetable garden to its Maryland headquarters. The company even planted seedlings for its employees to take home and start their own gardens. By encouraging behavioral change among their employees and clients, TMS maximizes its emissions reductions. On the road, TMS monitors vehicle conditions to ensure tires are inflated, idling is minimized and fuel caps are fitted properly. TMS also operates one of the most advanced fleets in the world, using ultra-low sulfur diesel fuel whenever possible. In the office, TMS requires all of its offices to recycle all paper, use recycled office materials, install energy efficient equipment and reduce energy usage. TMS is part of a growing trend where transportation companies are developing and implementing sustainability initiatives to address their environmental impact and differentiate their offerings. Carbonfund.org is working with leading travel and transportation partners, large and small, to help achieve their sustainability goals. Also, TMS has been awarded the 2010 EcoLeadership Award by The Alliance for Workplace Excellence. This honor is bestowed upon leading companies in the Washington, D.C. area that maintain sustainable workplaces. TMS also makes a priority of serving green companies, including the US Green Building Council, Solar Power International and the American Wind Energy Association. By continuing to lead the transportation industry in a sustainable direction, TMS is able to do well by doing good.
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