BlueGreen Alliance

Good Jobs, Clean Environment, Green Economy

YOU SHOULD KNOW… 

The wave of clean energy investors continues to grow. A press conference will highlight the collaboration between 340 investors—worth an estimated $24 trillion—who are calling for a global agreement to act on climate change. (Clean Technica)

WHAT’S TRENDING 

Obama pushes efficiency, solar – The Obama administration is unveiling a number of actions to improve energy efficiency and spur growth in solar energy on our homes and businesses. The White House says the actions will help reduce carbon pollution by 300 million metric tons by 2030. (The Hill)

A backlog of epic proportions – More than 100,000 repairs are backlogged in Los Angeles schools alone. The repairs run the gamut from compromised fire safety systems to water leaks. (KPCC)

Exposed – Hundreds of workers at a Walmart warehouse in Indianapolis have been exposed to PCBs—or polychlorinated biphenyl—a synthetic organic chemical compound that is highly toxic and classified by the Environmental Protection Agency as "probable human carcinogens." (WBIW)

For many situations, the adage that “nothing in life is free” rings true. At the end of the day, though, fixing climate change could counter that notion. A new report by the New Climate Economy suggests that protecting communities from the effects of climate change and making the necessary preparations for this new reality could add up to zero cost.

The report—and the commission behind it—is the result of the work of 24 former heads of state, including the former President of Mexico Felipe Calderón, as well as finance ministers and others from across the world. It explores and suggests several pathways to a stronger and more resilient economy through infrastructure investments and policies that create a clean energy future, rethink land use, stimulate innovation, and more. 

Posted In: Climate Change, Infrastructure

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Image credit: Climate Central 

Folks in Washington, D.C. may want to invest in scuba gear. By 2050, the nation’s capital may see record flooding that will put $7 billion worth of property, three military bases, and parts of the National Mall at risk, according to a new report. (New York Times)

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You may not know this, but many of the textbooks used around the U.S. originate in Texas and are approved by the state’s Board of Education. Groups are questioning the integrity of proposed social studies textbooks, saying they misrepresent and distort scientific findings on climate change. Dr. Minda Berbeco, director of the National Center for Science Education, said of the proposed textbooks, “Climate change will be a key issue that future citizens of Texas will need to understand and confront, and they deserve social studies textbooks that reinforce good science and prepare them for the challenges ahead.” (Houston Chronicle)

WHAT’S TRENDING 

No big costs – According to a new study, tackling climate change may add no additional costs to the world economy. The study shows that $90 trillion is likely to be spent over the coming 15 years on new infrastructure around the world and asserts the big challenge for governments is to adopt rules and send stronger market signals that redirect much of that investment toward low-emission options. (New York Times) 

Growing fast - Last year, new global capacity of wind, solar, and other renewable power grew by more than any year in history. (Christian Science Monitor) 

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In Europe, Germany’s renewable energy efforts are driving down costs. And, in the U.S.—with a gridlocked Congress that has failed to provide real leadership—states have taken the lead in setting renewable energy targets and other policies to spur growth in clean energy. (New York Times)

WHAT’S TRENDING 

Same old stuff – Expect the U.S. House this week to take a barrage of votes on energy policies that will go nowhere in the Senate. (The Hill) 

Solar storm threat? – New warnings highlight how solar storms may be a threat to our nation’s power grid. (E&E News) 

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Cleveland is succeeding in charging ahead with expanding renewable energy sources despite state-wide efforts to freeze progress. Stark County for example has 15 companies involved in the wind energy supply chain. Ohio has the potential to generate 141,000 gigawatt hours of electricity just from offshore wind farms in Lake Erie. (Inside Climate News & New York Times)

WHAT’S TRENDING

Courageous effort – Efforts to save the ozone layer were courageous and paid off. One columnist argues it’s time to muster that same courage to combat climate change . This is in stark contrast to another mind-bending view that rising carbon levels are “cause for celebration”. (The Guardian)

Granite state race – A new poll by the League of Conservation Voters reveals 48 percent of voters would be less likely to support a candidate who does not accept the reality of climate change. (Washington Post)

The following blog is by Erin Bzymek, press secretary for the BlueGreen Alliance.

On the national level, the political landscape for helping communities better prepare for the effects of climate change is a little hazy. For cities and towns that are feeling the effects of more severe flooding and frequent power outages first hand, the need to be better prepared is pretty clear cut, but they’re not calling it climate preparedness. With scientific proof on their side that climate change is and will continue to affect communities, cities like Grand Haven, Michigan, and Tulsa, Oklahoma, are making the necessary repairs and upgrades to handle more severe weather.

Posted In: Climate Change

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This week, Californians surpassed the mark of purchasing 100,000 electric vehicles. (Los Angeles Times)

WHAT’S TRENDING

People’s movement – On September 21, a huge turnout is expected for the People’s Climate March. It is an effort to draw attention to climate change before the United Nations summit. (Huffington Post)

Save the forests – Pine and aspen forests that are abundant in the west are dying off. (USA Today)

At UPS, sustainability success starts with employees, not just newer and better technology 

The following blog is written by Jim Bruce, Vice President for Energy and Environmental Policy at UPS.

Sustainability is often about creating or doing less—less waste, lower emissions. But is that the right approach? 

What if, instead, we were committed to doing more? 

Many corporate sustainability reports look and feel the same, but the best ones tell a story—what a company did, how it is leading, and what it is doing to take ownership of environmental and social concerns. 

Posted In: Climate Change

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Source: Clean Technica

One of the largest public university systems in the country—the University of California—has made one of the largest solar purchases by an American university. (Washington Post)