Sustainability
Climate Extreme — Outdoor Air Conditioning Keeps Qatar Cool

Climate Extreme — Outdoor Air Conditioning Keeps Qatar Cool

Qatar is one of the hottest places on Earth and its temperature increases are accelerrating.  As a result, The Washington Post explains how Qatar does the unthinkable — air conditions its public outdoor spaces, fueling the “vicious cycle” of burning fossil fuels that lead to greater warming.

Why This Matters:  If the global average temperature rise exceeds 2 degrees Celsius, then Qatar’s average temperature will increase between 4 and 6 degrees, which would make work nearly impossible and the city could be uninhabitable.  Qatar may be able to cool certain areas for now, but it cannot cool the entire country indefinitely.

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Growth of Gas Guzzling SUVs Adding Massive Amount of CO2 Globally

Growth of Gas Guzzling SUVs Adding Massive Amount of CO2 Globally

Second only to electric power globally since 2010, sport utility vehicle (SUV) sales have spiked and they are now contributing hugely to the growth of carbon dioxide in the atmosphere.  In addition, global fuel economy worsened caused in part by the rising SUV demand even as efficiency improvements in smaller cars saved over 2 million barrels a day and electric cars displaced less than 100,000 barrels a day.

Why This Matters:  This is a big double whammy on efforts to curb CO2 emissions and decrease the demand for fossil fuels for cars.

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One Tip It On Back Thing:  Beer in Paper “Bottles”

One Tip It On Back Thing: Beer in Paper “Bottles”

The Danish brewing company Carlsberg is developing a prototype “paper bottle” that will be “fully recyclable and have an inner barrier to allow the bottles to contain beer.”  The Associated Press reported that the company is planning to collaborate with Coca-Cola, Swedish vodka maker Absolut, and makeup group L’Oreal to develop paper bottles.  Carlsberg is […]

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Hero of the Week: Lilly Satidtanasarn

Hero of the Week: Lilly Satidtanasarn

Called “Thailand’s Greta Thunberg” 12-year-old Lilly Satidtanasarn has been fighting to stop the use of single-use plastics in her home country–which is one of the leading contributors to ocean plastic pollution. As the Jakarta Post reported, “In June, Lilly won her first victory: she persuaded Central, a major supermarket in Bangkok, to stop giving out […]

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Four of Top Five Greenest Cities in U.S. Are In California

Four of Top Five Greenest Cities in U.S. Are In California

The annual ranking of the greenest cities in the U.S., as ranked by the consumer website WalletHub, came out on Tuesday and San Francisco, San Diego and Irvine California were the top three.

Why This Matters: California had 7 of the top 10 cities — only Washington, D.C., Seattle and Portland made the top ten.  Despite the Trump Administration’s claims to the contrary, in an independent evaluation, California came out on top — which shows that it’s strong environmental laws and sustainability programs make a difference.

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Unilever Makes Boldest Promise Yet on Reducing Plastics

Unilever Makes Boldest Promise Yet on Reducing Plastics

British/Dutch consumer products giant Unilever announced on Monday that by 2025 it will “make the blue planet blue again” by:

  • Cutting in half its use of virgin plastic, by reducing its absolute use of plastic packaging by more than 100,000 tonnes and accelerating its use of recycled plastic;
  • Helping to collect and process more plastic packaging than it sells.

Why This Matters:  Unilever is making these moves unilaterally and not because it is forced to by government regulation.

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