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Posted in Smart Steps Forward

Seven roads to climate-change readiness

This century’s rise in global average temperatures — about 1.5 degrees Fahrenheit — is small, but the human and economic impact is powerful. Looking ahead, the 50-year cost of unchecked climate change could exceed $175 trillion. PERILS REPORTED TODAY The reasons for climate change costs are no less varied than the regions where they occur. […]

Beyond mountains of waste, a sustainable economy is seen

The linear economy has persisted domesticly and worldwide. Until recently, democracies, monarchies, and totalian regimes have all followed the same economic model. Drawing the line This model has served many generations, yet it endangers future generations. Some of the consequences are piled in front of us today. Others drift in the oceans, pollute our air, […]
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National laboratories explore tomorrow’s energy grid

The 17 national laboratories of the US Department of Energy have been leaders in scientific innovation for more than seventy years. Much of the research at those laboratories today focuses on how to migrate the petrol-powered energy grid of today to one that leverages renewable energy. The transformation will involve significant challenges: Delivering ample power, […]

The lower-carbon future of coal-fired power plants

Conversion to natural gas In the 1980’s, horizontal drilling and fracking had become common practice. Natural gas prices plummeted. Those lower costs, and the reduced carbon dioxide emissions of natural gas, caused many coal-fired power plants to be converted to natural gas. Power plant owners minimized transition costs, using the existing power grid without having […]

America’s road to an EV future

You may know that vikings sailed the ocean blue 471 years before Christopher Columbus reached the Bahamas. You may also have read that in 2021, a Scandinavian country is leading the technological journey away from fossil fuels, toward Electric Vehicles (EV). More than 89% of passenger vehicles registered in Norway last month were EV. Less than 4% were […]
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Hydroponics: Redefining the farm

In 2020, agriculture has moved farther from the traditional farm and closer to the table. For 11,000 years, farming was confined to the field, with the notable exceptions of Babylonian hanging gardens and Aztec floating gardens.[1] Then, by the 15th century, plants were being grown in controlled enclosures and, four centuries later, in greenhouses.[2] Hydroponics, the practice of growing […]
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Looking ahead to 2020

The environmental and resiliency events planned for 2020 will offer education and inspiration in all four seasons. Some events may not require much travel! Relevant conferences and expositions will be held in several regions of the U.S. as well as internationally. FEBRUARY GreenBiz Phoenix/Scottsdale — February 4-6 More than 1,500 business, government, and academic leaders […]
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Progress in 2019

This year, a better environment and solutions to climate change were pursued locally, nationally, and internationally. In 2019, more lands were protected, more renewable energy was generated, and improvements in environmental design were experienced by more people than ever. MARCH A new law extends protection to more land and waterways The John D. Dingell, Jr. […]
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Can technology reboot the recycling market?

Recycling has been common practice for over 50 years. Unfortunately, practice does not always lead to perfection.  Garbage is often tossed into recycling bins, contaminating all of the contents. Another common practice, wish-cycling, mixes unusable materials with otherwise-valuable materials.[1] That’s just two issues that recur in recycling. The problems have weakened commodity values, and diminished […]