Wednesday, January 27, 2010
Monday, January 25, 2010
San Jose, California's Barrio Horseshoe neighborhood, a predominantly low-income Latino area, is the focus of Raul Lozano's efforts to promote urban backyard gardening. Lozano's organization, La Mesa Verde (The Green Table), helps to facilitate organic vegetable gardens in the neighborhood, thematic of a larger national movement toward both self-sufficiency and a healthier diet, both frequently lacking in low-income areas. The project is emblematic of the broad quality of life improvements that can stem from spending time in the garden. See the slideshow at The New York Times.
Friday, January 22, 2010
About a year ago, the announcement was made of Walmart's intention to evaluate the entire scope its product offerings through the prism of ecological impact. More recently they have announced they will begin with electronics by developing a green label system that identifies, according to FastCompany, attributes ranging "labor conditions to end-of-life disposal." This seems like an appropriate place to start considering the growing issue of e-waste and their own role in propagating it. Time will tell whether Walmart will be successful in using their leverage over their vendors toward quantifiably sustainable ends. Here's hoping.
Wednesday, January 13, 2010
On the eve of the 17th Annual European Seafood Exposition, the Guardian recently published an article thats asks whether environmental policy should be managed by scientists, rather than politicians. According to data provided by the World Wildlife Federation (WWF), 88% of European community fish stocks are overfished. Who's to blame? Perhaps the European policy-makers, who have consistently exceeded limits suggested by scientists (find the WWF data here). Perhaps the fishing industry or it's consumers. In any case, the European Commission recently proposed "radical reform" to the Common Fisheries Policy, a top-down approach that has proven to be the only real means of efficient change in environmental policy.
Tuesday, January 12, 2010
Monday, January 11, 2010
The New York times recently published an article on the growing popularity of Environmental Charter schools, especially in New York City. The article makes note of a growing group of young people that are fundamentally imbued with an understanding of the importance of sustainability. The curriculums vary between environmental science, in preparation for the onslaught of Green job opportunities, to more civic-minded programs, with an emphasis on community involvement. The youth of the Green charter schools means that there are few, if any, graduates to evaluate the program's success, however the article suggests an unusually content student body. The program's success definitely asks the question of whether this type of curriculum would flourish if applied to the public school system.
Friday, January 8, 2010
The EPA is taking the current ground level ozone limitations to task. On Thursday, they announced their intention to reduce the standard from .075PPM to between .060 and.070PPM in the next twenty years. Though the price-tag is estimated at $90 billion annually, the projected healthcare savings of $13-$90 billion should soften the impact. While the more toxic of US counties, namely Los Angeles, Houston, and a handful in the northeast, are allotted more time to comply with the revised standard, the American Petroleum Institute has raised objections. Go figure. Definitely a encouraging prospect. Now make it so.