The city’s shimmering skyline may wear the label of the world’s energy capital, but deep in Houston’s Dumpsters lies a less glamorous superlative: It is the worst recycler among the United States’ 30 largest cities.
Houston recycles just 2.6 percent of its total waste, according to a study this year by Waste News, a trade magazine. By comparison, San Francisco and New York recycle 69 percent and 34 percent of their waste respectively. Moreover, 25,000 Houston residents have been waiting as long as 10 years to get recycling bins from the city.
Tuesday, July 29, 2008
Thursday, July 24, 2008
San Francisco, which uses less than half as many plastic carriers as Los Angeles, became the first American city to ban plastic bags last year. China unexpectedly followed suit in January by ending production of bags and barring shops from giving them away.
Bangladesh was the first nation to ban plastic bags in 2002 amid rising worries that disposed bags were blocking drains during the monsoon season.
Tuesday, July 22, 2008
As a realtor, investor, homeowner, or homebuyer, you might be interested in some of the newest innovations in environmental architecture and design. The following blogs provide ideas and inspiration for a greener habitat.
- Apartment Therapy: Don’t let the title fool you. Although this blog attempts to save the planet, “one apartment at a time,” the authors bring resources to light that would delight any homeowner.
- Equity Green: A real estate tax advisor who focuses on public REITs, homebuilders, energy companies and real estate transactions (including like-kind exchanges), conducts an exploration of everything green as it relates to real estate.
- Green Build Blog: Green Build Blog posts about everything related to green building, with some entries devoted to answering readers’ questions.
- Green Buildings NYC: Stephen Del Percio, a New York attorney and a LEED accredited professional, attempts to stay on top of the latest news and developments in green building through his gbNYC blog. His site also links to the Green Buildings sites in Los Angeles, Washington D.C., and Miami.
- Inhabitat: Future-forward design and a daily source for innovations in sustainable architecture and green design for the home.
- Jetson Green: Preston D. Koerner focuses on advance trends in green building with an eye to the confluence of modernism and environmentalism.
- Living Green: Aaron Doyle, who believes that “everyone should be able to experience the pride and privilege of homeownership,” shares her thoughts on energy, environmental, and health issues that affect real estate today.
- Offbeat Homes: The unique, odd and freaky homes of today and tomorrow is brought to you by a freelance environmentally conscious Jennifer Chait.
- Sustainable Cities Blog: The CUNY Institute for Sustainable Cities in New York City blogs about moving cities toward sustainable practices.
- Sustainable Green Communities: Ram Shrivastava, a CEO and professional engineer, writes on environmentally friendly building design with discussions on climate change, green roofs, flood control, storm water recycling, LEED compliance, and alternative fuels.
- Treehugger: This blog attempts to be a one-stop shop for green news, solutions, and product information. Although more of a lifestyle-type blog, the focus is on living environments.
Monday, July 21, 2008
“The highest form of luxury is now growing it yourself or paying other people to grow it for you,” said Corby Kummer, the food columnist and book author. “This has become fashion.”
The author Barbara Kingsolver, whose book “Animal, Vegetable, Miracle” was a best seller last year, did not have the lazy locavore in mind when she wrote about the implications of making her family spend a year eating local. But she celebrates the trend.
“As a person of rural origin who has lived much of my life in rural places,” she said, “I can’t tell you how joyful it makes me to hear that it’s trendy for people in Manhattan to own a part of a cow.”
Wednesday, July 16, 2008
A classic in naturalist observation. A grasp of the common earthworm's importance is essential to a full understanding of soil fertility and plant health. Thanks to David Price for doing such an accurate scan of this book. Contains an interesting introduction by Sir Albert Howard, taken from a Faber & Faber edition, published about 1945. PUBLIC DOMAIN
Table of Contents
Part I -- Introduction
Lesson 1 -- History of the Earthworm
Lesson 2 -- The Habits of the Earthworm
Lesson 3 -- Habits of the Newly Developed Earthworm
Lesson 4 -- Potential Markets for Earthworms
Part II -- Introduction
Lesson 1 -- What Is Food?
Lesson 2 -- The Life Germ and Better Poultry
Lesson 3 -- Economical Poultry Housing
Lesson 4 -- The Interior of the Economical Hennery
Lesson 5 -- Intensive Range
Lesson 6 -- Putting the Bluebottle Fly to Work
Part III -- Introduction
Lesson 1 -- Natural and Man-Made Enemies of the Earthworm
Lesson 2 -- The Trout Farmer's Problem
Lesson 3 -- Feeding Problem of the Frog Farmer
Lesson 4 -- Housing the Earthworm Stock
Lesson 5 -- General Care and Feeding of Earthworms
Monday, July 14, 2008
Some of Ms. Howard’s increased harvest will also go to food pantries through an organization called Plant a Row for the Hungry, which encourages gardeners to plant extra vegetables to share with the poor.
Rhode Island Resource and Recovery Corporation, the independent state agency that operates the landfill, is offering a free 90-minute tour and educational session July 26 and Aug. 16 on a first-come, first-served basis.
Reservations for the tour can be made by calling Pat Russo at Resource Recovery, at (401) 942-1430, ext. 121. The maximum capacity is 25 people per session.
Saturday, July 12, 2008
As a part of the new system residents would be required to buy special city
garbage bags. Residents would then have to pay according to how much trash they
throw out. Mayor David Cicilline and the City Council members are supportive, of
the new system
Saturday, July 05, 2008
A New Jersey-based eco-friendly plant food company has struck a deal with Kraft Foods (NYSE: KFT) to turn its used packaging into purses, backpacks and other merchandise, company officials announced this week.
Under the partnership, TerraCycle, which already packages its own worm-waste fertilizer in recycled plastic bottles, will expand its waste collection sites to include Kraft brands such as Capri Sun, Chips Ahoy! and Oreo cookies. The companies will also sponsor teams to collect trash and will donate two cents per item to local community groups and schools.
The sea rocket, researchers report, can distinguish between plants that are related to it and those that are not. And not only does this plant recognize its kin, but it also gives them preferential treatment.
If the sea rocket detects unrelated plants growing in the ground with it, the plant aggressively sprouts nutrient-grabbing roots. But if it detects family, it politely restrains itself.
Friday, July 04, 2008
Companies planning to build huge solar power plants in the desert will be able to file new applications to use federal lands after the Bureau of Land Management reversed its position on the issue Tuesday.
Source: The Earth Institute at Columbia University
The National Intelligence Council (NIC) has completed a new classified assessment that explores how climate change could threaten U.S. security in the next 20 years by causing political instability, mass movements of refugees, terrorism, or conflicts over water and other resources. Among the major outside contributors of data was the Center for International Earth Science Information Network (CIESIN), a member of Columbia University’s Earth Institute. While the NIC assessment itself is confidential, the CIESIN data is public, and is posted here (PDF; 4.5 MB).