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Alterra Hetzel

Alterra Hetzel

The Future is the One Place Everyone is Headed Traveling by train is one of the most environmentally friendly ways to travel. As a more energy efficient mode of travel, rail contributes less per passenger mile to global warming than either cars or airplanes. When you travel with Amtrak® and offset your emissions, you help fight global warming and improve the future of our environment. And when you join Amtrak Guest Rewards program, you can do even more. For Earth Day through Train Day, the motto for Amtrak’s Guest Rewards Program is “The future is one place that everyone is headed, and how we get there is important.” From Earth Day on April 22nd until Train Day on May 7th, Amtrak Guest Rewards will be matching 50% of all carbon offset redemptions. Guest Rewards members earn points for train travel and can use those points to mitigate their train travel carbon footprint. And what’s more? Both Amtrak and Earth Day celebrate their 40 year anniversary this year! Since 2009 Amtrak and have partnered to offer carbon neutral travel options to customers and for Guest Rewards. Redeeming points with Amtrak’s Guest Rewards is as easy as one, two, three:
  1. Enroll today
  2. Provide your member number at the time of booking and earn points for every dollar spent on Amtrak travel
  3. Use your points to redeem a wide selection of rewards, including free Amtrak travel and carbon offsets
For example, a traveler can contribute 1,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards Points for 1,983 pounds of CO2 or 2,000 Amtrak Guest Rewards Points for 3,966 pounds of CO2. Of course, between now and National Train Day, Amtrak will award a 50% match! To celebrate rail travel and the partnership, will join Amtrak Guest Rewards at the Train Day celebration May 7th at Union Station in Washington, DC. Union Station joins Chicago, LA, and Philadelphia in the day’s celebration of Amtrak rail travel. This year, Amtrak celebrates four decades of providing the nation with vital intercity and high-speed passenger rail service. After 40 years dedicated to serving communities across the country, Amtrak is proud of its role in America's history, but even more excited about what's to come. published an article in May titled Transparency; Regulations Drive LCA Popularity that highlighted the growth in corporate interest to perform Life Cycle Assessments, otherwise known as LCAs. A fill product LCAs is a method used to calculate the carbon footprint of each unit through the entire supply chain – from raw material extraction to use and disposal.  This article highlights a Green Research report that surveys the field of LCAs including companies, academia, and LCA providers. What the report found was that the typical barriers for performing LCAs include costs, time, lack of regulation, and a lack of awareness of the benefits. [caption id="" align="alignleft" width="392" caption="image courtesy of"][/caption] As the article points out though, the benefits can far outweigh the barriers.  For example, the cost and time associated with LCAs is heavier on the first product. As data is collected and incorporated into research databases, the re-use of that information cuts significantly both the time and cost of the process for the company’s additional products. Now, how about lack of regulations or awareness of benefits? The article reports that when the survey done asked companies “What best reflects your thinking on the business benefits of LCA?” The top five responses were that the LCA will: enable them to make better products, enable them to respond to customers, put sustainability on scientific footing, enhance brand, and help make them more efficient.  This research report also finds:
“Of 23 companies surveyed that have already conducted LCAs, 82 percent plan to do at least one in the next 12 months. The number of scientific publications that reference LCAs has jumped from 473 in 2008 to 902 in 2010, with 636 referencing LCAs between January and April 2011. And LCA tool vendors and consultants report 30-40 percent sales increases a year, with many companies turning to LCAs to get a better grasp on their impacts, respond to demands for transparency and get ahead of regulations or eco-label requirements.”
An example of an eco-label that requires an LCA is CarbonFree® Product Certification. This certification label is a meaningful, transparent way for companies to provide environmentally friendly, carbon neutral products. By determining a product’s carbon footprint with an LCA, reducing inefficiencies where possible and then offsetting remaining emissions through third-party validated carbon reduction projects, companies can (as the survey points out): differentiate the brand and product, increase sales, improve customer loyalty and, of course, strengthen corporate social responsibility & environmental goals. Companies that have performed LCAs and achieved this certification include: Motorola, LEI Electronics, Intek America, Nika Water, Grounds for Change, Domino Sugar as well as others.  Considering this new research report on LCAs, these companies are clearly onto something! For more information about these products or about the Certification Program, visit:
[caption id="" align="alignleft" width="269" caption="Elephant spied on a South African Garden Adventure"][/caption] Operating for almost fifteen years, Earthbound Expeditions have taken adventurers to swim with the seals in the Galapagos, sip fine Malbecs in Argentine vineyards, enjoy cooking classes in a 12th century Tuscan castle and attend world-class performances in stunning concert halls. This company is dedicated to the art of travel and will stop at nothing to ensure your journey with them is a memorable experience. If you are in search of an authentic travel experience, take a peek at Earthbound's one-of-a-kind, hand crafted journeys. Designed for the traveler with an independent streak, their small group adventures are certain to please and delight those not wishing to take a "tour" but a journey. Some key features of the Earthbound Expeditions include:
  • Carbon neutral travel - Through their partnership with the, all Earthbound globetrotters will travel carbon neutral.  This is accomplished by supporting climate mitigation projects through
  • Location - Whether in a city or a village, accommodations are centrally located so that travelers can simply walk out the door and start exploring!
  • Timing - Carefully crafted itineraries offer the best of a destination without long travel times or being rushed. This means more time for adventure!
  • “Insider” Experiences - Earthbounders enjoy one-of-a-kind intimate experiences with local experts. This means a true local experience.
  • Small Groups - Expeditions are with just 12-29 fellow travelers ( hosted journeys may be larger). You’ll discover treasures that are simply not available to large tour groups.
  • Intimate Dining – Travelers enjoy regional specialties the way they were meant to be enjoyed.
  • No Hidden Costs - All admissions and special events listed in your itinerary are included - even tips for your guide and driver.
  • Superb Expedition Leaders - Guides offer a unique perspective on the destinations. These group leaders are great historians, naturalists and linguists, as well as great travel companions!
Click here to book your Earthbound Expedition today!
Coffee: We  buy it in bulk and yet it always seems to make its way back to the grocery list. Being the team of java-lovers we are, is particularly pleased to share with our supporters and partners that Grounds for Change is offering a special deal for Earth Day. Just use the coupon code: PLANT-A-TREE-15 to save 15%, and Grounds for Change will plant a tree in your honor. Feel free to share this link with family and friends to spread the word and help plant more trees!

Coupon valid through Monday, April 25th. Click here to choose your brew.

Besides the high-quality coffee, Grounds for Change is a great source for beans year-round because of their commitment to sustainable business. They are a member of 1% for the Planet, donate well over 1% of their total sales to various environmental organizations, and have received a Washington award for Outstanding Achievement in Sustainability. Why? Because every single bean they roast is Fair Trade Certified, Organic Certified, CarbonFree® Certified and Shade Grown, which means the possibility of a real livelihood for coffee growers, a breath of fresh air for the planet, zero net carbon emissions from crop to cup and healthy forests for migratory songbirds.  Most recently, Grounds for Change became a Certified B Corporation - a new type of corporation that uses the power of business to meet comprehensive and transparent social and environmental performance standards, practice higher legal accountability standards, and build business constituency for “good business.” With a 15% discount, tree planting for your purchase, and the opportunity to support such a responsible business, now is the perfect time to take advantage of this Earth Day special and try Grounds for Change!
Tuesday, 15 March 2011 14:09

CIFOR – Thinking Beyond the Canopy

In Cameroon, the amount of timber harvested since 1996 has increased by a factor of 10, making logging a significant economic player in this African country. However, nearly 75% of that timber is harvested illegally, a practice that threatens the very resource the nation depends on. The Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR) is shedding light and knowledge on what they’re calling “Cameroon’s Hidden Harvest,” highlighting the degradation of the local environment while also pointing out that over 45,000 people in the local community depend on such practices to support their families. CIFOR’s research draws attention to the fact that while moving toward stronger deforestation laws is critical to our environment and combating climate change, the human element at economic risk cannot be ignored and must be part of the story in the path to more sustainable development techniques. The Center for International Forestry Research is a nonprofit, global facility dedicated to advancing human well-being, environmental conservation and equity, and is proud to partner with CIFOR for another year to support the research facility in a different capacity – helping mitigate the carbon footprint of the organization’s corporate emissions. CIFOR’s work is particularly critical for many of the forest projects that supports, and we are pleased to support their mission. Operating around the world, and primarily in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, CIFOR provides important analysis to help policy makers improve forest management techniques from the viewpoint of the people whose livelihoods depend on forests for agriculture, infrastructure, and trade. A real eye-opener is “deforestation counter” on CIFOR’s homepage, which showed me that during the short time I spent on their site learning about their programs, 3,600 hectares of forest were lost. This is staggering, to say the least. We encourage everyone to follow the important work of CIFOR, which is now easier than ever with three new Facebook pages: one in English that is focused internationally, one in Spanish focused on Latin America and another in French focused on Africa. Likewise, they have launched three new Twitter feeds in English, French and Spanish. To learn more about the important forestry issues affecting our world today, check out the thoughtful and informative articles on the CIFOR blog.
Forever Cheese announced on January 4th, that since 2007  (including their recent 2011 donation) it has offset its carbon emissions by 11 million lbs. or over 5000 metric tons! Through this partnership with Foundation, Forever Cheese is actively supporting reforestation and renewable energy such as wind and solar, actively demonstrating the proactive steps it is taking to fight against global climate change. Forever Cheese, importer of unique cheeses and specialty foods from Italy, Spain, Portugal & Croatia, has spent the past 5 years making donations that are the equivalent of carbon emissions from over 560,000 gallons of gasoline consumed, the electricity use (both solar and wind) of over 600 homes for one year or the carbon sequestered annually by over 1000 acres of pine forest. This year they have invested 80% of their funds in U.S. renewable energy projects (including both wind and solar) and 20% of their funds on reforestation.  Forever Cheese uses recyclable materials whenever possible in the office and is actively looking to increase their commitment to preserving the environment. This combination of both internal and external carbon reductions helps Forever Cheese reach their sustainability objectives while protecting important biodiversity and encouraging the shift to clean energy solutions. Michele Buster, Vice President of Forever Cheese, commented that she was looking for a way to make a greater difference on the environment and to the community than just her commitment to wind energy at home and thus engaged her company to support renewable energy for a more far reaching effect. Forever Cheese is dedicated to sourcing the most unique and highest quality cheeses and specialty foods  of the Mediterranean. For the last 15 years owners Michele Buster and Pierluigi Sini have been importing and educating Americans on these unusual and fantastic products., the leading nonprofit carbon offset and climate solution organizations, supports third party renewable energy in the U.S and abroad to reduce CO2 pollution. The support Foundation receives for carbon reduction projects offer important climate change solutions that benefits both planet and people. Foundation helps both social and environmental commitments by supporting third-party validated renewable energy, energy efficiency and reforestation projects around the world. For more information please contact (718)777-0772 or This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or visit:
The 2012 International CES, the world's largest tradeshow for consumer technology, ran this year from January 10th through January 13 in Las Vegas, Nevada. This year the show welcomed more than 3,100 companies on a show floor that exceeded 1.85 million net square feet of exhibit space. Among those exhibitors three companies featured’s CarbonFree Certified label, signifying that their products are offered to consumers as carbon neutral. This means that the products underwent a rigorous lifecycle analysis determining the product carbon footprint from cradle to grave and further offset the impact of that footprint by supporting one of’s third-party validated carbon reduction projects. CarbonFree Certification is a transparent, meaningful label that distinguishes products that have undergone this rigorous third-party certification process. LG Electronics – LG is the first in industry to distribute home appliances, solar panels and various consumer electronics with the CarbonFree® sustainability label, many of which were debuted at CES this year. This marks the first time that CarbonFree-certified LCD TV, LCD monitor, refrigerator, clothes washer, vacuum cleaner, air conditioner, LED lamp or solar panel products will be available to the public. These products also have agressive internal carbon reduction plans to ensure that every year LG manufactures them, they are decreasing their footprint more and more. In addition to the LG CarbonFree certification, the products will be ENERGY STAR® qualified. Other products certified by LG include two mobile phones, also available to the public in 2012.  Learn more at ECO Alkaline from LEI Electronics - Looking for an eco-friendly, better priced battery that performs as well as the same old brands?  Here they are. Last year these batteries received an “Innovations In Engineering” award at the Consumer Electronics Show.  This year they were at CES again as the only and first carbon neutral battery currently on the market. In addition to carbon neutrality these batteries are also more consumer friendly than their competitors for a couple of reasons including Zero Lead/Cadmium/ or Mercury (they are actually landfill safe), have a 5 year shelf life, have a patent pending leak -resistant seal on the battery, and are offered at retail prices that are competitive to the other major battery brands. Today, environmentally friendly Eco Alkalines batteries are available in US and Canadian supermarkets, department stores, toy and hobby retailers, colleges and university stores, and hotel chains. GoEcoLife by INTEK America – Again at CES this year, the GoEcoLife, which is the world’s first CarbonFree® Certified carbon neutral paper shredder, showed its product to show attendees.  Under the GoECOlife™ brand, INTEK has been dedicated to producing environmentally-preferable, smart every day devices and products that ultimately contribute to their overall commitment to sustainability. They manufacture certified biodegradable/compostable products and utilize recycled and RoHS-compliant (lead-FREE) materials both in products and packaging whenever possible, as well as proprietary energy -conserving technologies. Also, the personal GoECOlife™ shredder utilizes an energy-saving technology that prevents vampire energy waste when the shredder is not in use and plugged in. Recently, the GoECOlife™ Platinum Series™ Paper Shredder (GXC120Ti) was one of four shredders “RECOMMENDED” by Consumer Reports in their recent paper shredder review.  This is a smart choice for the earth and for consumers. To learn more about the GoECOlife™ please click To learn more about these products and the CarbonFree Certified label from, please visit
On September 27th at the Shangri-La Hotel in Jakarta, Indonesia, The Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR), in association with leading business groups, NGOs, development agencies, and government ministries, will convene a one-day conference entitled Forests Indonesia: Alternative futures to meet demands for food, fibre, fuel and REDD+. The event will provide a platform for 800 leaders from all sectors to discuss the challenges and opportunities faced by the country in the sustainable use of its forests. The conference will feature agenda-setting keynote speakers and a series of engaging forums under two themes: Trade and investment: Implications for forests, and REDD+ in transition to a low-carbon future. Registration is free directly through and simultaneous translation of the addresses and discussions into Indonesian and English will be provided. For the conference's program, complete list of speakers and other information, visit the website or write to This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it..  The Center for International Forestry Research is a nonprofit, global facility dedicated to advancing human well-being, environmental conservation and equity, and is proud to partner with CIFOR. CIFOR’s work is particularly critical for many of the forest projects that supports, and we are pleased to support their mission. Operating around the world, and primarily in Asia, Africa, and Latin America, CIFOR provides important analysis to help policy makers improve forest management techniques from the viewpoint of the people whose livelihoods depend on forests for agriculture, infrastructure, and trade. We encourage everyone to follow the important work of CIFOR, which is now easier than ever with three new Facebook pages: one in English that is focused internationally, one in Spanish focused on Latin America and another in French focused on Africa. Likewise, they have launched three new Twitter feeds in English, French and Spanish. To learn more about the important forestry issues affecting our world today, check out the thoughtful and informative articles on the CIFOR blog. And, if you can please join the September 27th Conference.
Wednesday, 01 February 2012 09:54

Care2: Empowering You to Make a Difference

care2Care2 is a community that empowers individuals to make a difference. Care2 has over 18 million members, making it the web's largest community of people seeking to make a difference in issues like green living, human rights and animal welfare.  The letter from the President Randy Paynter on the Care2 site says it all, “The idea is simple: Make it easy for everyone to live a healthy, green lifestyle and impact the causes they care about most.”

The Care2 site offers a plethora of engagement options, and here are just a few of them:

  • healthy living – from food, to health, to pets to family this section of Care2 gives members categorized advice on ways that members can improve the overall well being of their lives in a variety of ways.
  • community – want to join up with like-mined people? This is the place to meet people who are also looking for you, such as: travel, singles, parenting, hobbies, and many more.
  • start a petition – this great feature allows individuals, non-profits, and other groups to make their voices heard in a simple but effective way to start petitions, spread the word, and get voices heard. In fact, ever notice the petition widget on the site? This is one way that Care2 and partner together to get a pro-environment message out to readers like you!
  • eCards – for any occasion, Care2 offers eCards that range from spiritual to sentimental to romantic to funny. These cards are great for a special occasion or “just because.”
  • free click to donate – this is one of the easiest ways you can support! With Care2s click to donate, a member can simply go onto the site and click on the cause under global warming to click our cause and get Care2 donations. This is a great way to support us and other causes without impacting your bank account.
  • news network – the Care2 news network gives news from the US and around the world on many newsworthy areas including government, politics, culture, and more. This is a great one-stop shop to get the news that you care about.
  • daily deals – looking to save on coffee, cosmetics, clothes and other socially/environmentally conscious stuff? Care2 provides a deal every day for subscribers that can save big money and support great businesses. 
  • green jobs – if you want a green job in policy, renewable energy, your favorite non-profit or more, this tool offers a great list of green jobs that can get you to work in the green economy. A great resource for folks looking for any kind of green collar job!

These engagement options that Care2 offers are just a few of many that members can explore. is certainly proud to partner with such a forward thinking organization. The membership is free and easy to sign up for so check it out today. To learn more please visit: or

This story is reposted from the June 20, 2011, release by Cross-Post, LLC. It's also a great resource for anyone looking for employment. Be sure to read through for a list of green job search engines. Company Donates Thousands of Dollars on Behalf of Advertising Clients. Cross-Post LLC, parent company of and, marked the first anniversary recently of working with to help protect the environment. Cross-Post LLC works with many newspapers in North America and posts their employers classified ads to the Green Employers Network. Companies, interested in "Green" issues select the network in order to attract and recruit like-minded job candidates. "In the first year we have posted more than 3,000 jobs for employers and their local newspapers to the Green Employers Network," noted John Fujii, Cross-Post CFO. "Our company has made a corresponding donation to on their behalf totaling more than $8,000 for the period." “We're thrilled to be working with Cross-Post as a part of their sustainability program,” said Eric Carlson, president of “Their work promoting green jobs is essential to our country’s transition to a clean energy future. Cross-Post’s commitment to reducing their own carbon impact by supporting's third-party validated projects exemplifies their role as an environmental leader in their field.” Newspapers participating in the Green Employers Network include The Las Vegas Review Journal, TulsaWorld, The Oklahoman, Milwaukee Journal Sentinel, PhillyBurbs, Riverside Press Enterprise and others. "In these tough economic times, non-profits are hit pretty hard. We're privileged to be able to assist in any way that we can in their mission to protect our precious natural resources and decrease carbon emissions," said Carl Braun, Cross-Post CEO. Cross-Post has a joint venture partnership with and several of their clients participate in the network. Other Cross-Post partners include,,,,,,, ,,,,,,,,,,, and
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