A Pig with Lipstick

Posted on June 8, 2011. Filed under: News | Tags: , , , , , , |

We’ve all seen or heard ridiculous propaganda advertisements  by companies or organizations eager to tout their feel-good green attributes.  Often these attempts have proven pure marketing magic with little actual environmental weight behind them.

But what to make of companies that have made real commitments to sustainability and improving the environment, while simultaneously taking contradictory stances on climate change?


Big fund manager Calvert Investment Management (among other large investors) decided to tackle this such issue by sending a letter to 43 companies on the board of the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM) asking them to explain how they reconcile their own greenhouse gas-reduction efforts with NAM’s efforts of stripping the EPA of its powers to regulate greenhouse gases.


The letter singles out companies such as Intel, Heinz, Pfizer, Verizon, CSX Corporation, Abbot Laboratories, and Dow Chemical for having industry leading sustainability efforts while also supporting NAM’s efforts to repeal authority of the EPA to regulate GHG emissions under the Clean Air Act.


The EPA was granted the authority to regulate emissions of greenhouse gases (namely CO2) in 2010, but efforts by private interests and (mainly) republican officials have been underway since then to limit its authority.  NAM’s claims that EPA regulation of GHGs would impose unreasonable costs on American manufacturing  have been refuted by leading groups that have countered that imposed costs are exaggerated and pale in comparison to future costs of consequences of climate change.


The fact that companies are playing both sides – pursuing sustainability goals while also funding efforts to stymie environmental legislation in Congress is only adding to the partisan stall our country finds itself in today.


This is why it’s imperative to know the full-story of how a company operates and what it invests its resources (time, money, lobbying effort) towards – in order to be a conscious and informed citizen and consumer.

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A Clearer Guide for Greener Rides

Posted on May 26, 2011. Filed under: News | Tags: , , , , |

The Federal Govt. unveiled new fuel economy window stickers this week for vehicles starting with the 2013 model year.  

Replacing the familiar MPG ratings are new labels which will include a greenhouse gas and a smog rating, comparing a vehicle’s emissions with those of all other vehicles. 

The new, more comprehensive labels take into account both pollution impacts and operating costs for all new vehicles.  The new labels will also include an estimated annual fuel cost based on 15,000 miles traveled at a fuel price of $3.70/gallon.

The EPA hopes that the new gallons-per-mile metric, combined with estimated fuel costs will provide consumers with more accurate measures of efficiency and expense than the traditional miles-per-gallon figure.   

Read the full article HERE

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The Biggest Loser

Posted on October 26, 2010. Filed under: News | Tags: , , , |

The EPA’s “National Building Competition” just wrapped up and its winners were announced.  Mirroring the popular television show “The Biggest Loser”, the EPA’s competition pitted commercial sized buildings situated across the country against each other, in a year-long effort to cut as much energy consumption as possible.

Through relatively simple (and inexpensive) approaches, all participating buildings were able to cut their energy usage drastically.  The winner of the competition was a UNC dormitory, which was able to reduce its energy use by 35.7 percent in just one year, saving more than $250,000 on their energy bills and reducing more than 730 metric tons of greenhouse gas emissions.

Read more HERE

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