SmartWay: Using Technology to Reduce Emissions and Fuel Consumption

The freight transportation industry makes the world go round, but it is also taxing on the environment.

Fuel consumption is a major concern for companies that employ big rigs to ship freight, not only for its cost, but also for its environmental impact. The United States’ fleet of long-haul trucks uses over a billion gallons of diesel fuel per year. In 2004, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched SmartWay to reduce the impact of transportation-related (with a focus on freight transportation) emissions by seeking to improve fuel efficiency.

SmartWay Technology Program

This program is designed to evaluate existing and emerging technologies and equipment that can potentially reduce greenhouse gasses and other air pollutants emitted during freight transportation. The EPA identified and promotes four categories of technology that have been shown to capably reduce emissions or improve fuel efficiency:

Idle Reduction Technologies – Though idling may be more environmentally friendly than accelerating, periods of Read more…

How To Save Money and Conserve Energy in the Summer Months

Without having to resort to installing an air conditioner in every room, turning your house into a summer igloo, or moving deep into a cave in order to escape the summer heat, plenty of options are available for low cost ways to save money while staying cool and conserving energy in the summer months.

The best defense your home can have is insulation. This bears repeating: The best defense your home can have is insulation! Proper insulation means air conditioning won’t seep through the cracks in the doors, windows or through the roof of the house. (Green roofs are excellent for insulation and conserving energy, however, their installation costs put it well out of reach for most folks.) A half-foot of insulation is the recommended minimum in order to prevent a significant leak in your room; if you have to splurge on one energy-saving item this summer, this Read more…

MyClimate – Protecting Our Planet

Imagine everything you do in a day.

Now, try to imagine how much CO2 is emitted in the process. It’s hard to envision, right? Now, consider these facts:

Lighting makes up between 5-10% of a household’s energy consumption in Canada
Car emissions account for 30% of Canada’s total greenhouse gas emissions with the average car releasing 5 TONS of C02 on a yearly basis
Four-wheel drive increases fuel consumption by 5-10% that of two-wheel drive
Every Canadian emits an average of 21.9 tons per year – that’s the equivalent of roughly two school buses!

So, how do you avoid using things like transportation, lighta, and other household appliances? The truth of the matter is, while you can make conscious decisions to use less, some carbon emitting activities can’t be easily eliminated from our day.

Myclimate is a non-profit Swiss foundation that recognizes this dilemma and offers a solution: buying carbon offsets. A carbon offset is a monetary Read more…

Nike: Working Towards a Better World

Sports have always been an important part of my life.

Whether it’s basketball, baseball, tennis, football, swimming, running or soccer, I’ve always been involved in sports in some aspect or the other.

Playing sports has kept me fit and out of trouble. It’s taught me individual (strength, perseverance) & team (interpersonal, collaboration) skills.

Most importantly, sports have taught me responsibility.

My actions (big or small), always have an impact on myself, teammates and the game. By being accountable, it’s forced me to always strive to become better.

Better World

Nike is a brand that’s synonymous with sports.

Seek high performance in any sport, and you’ll find a Nike product that is specifically designed to help you do better.

In recent years however, Nike has opened up its “better” focus towards positively impacting society, and the environment.

Earlier this year, Nike launched its corporate responsibility micro-site “Nike: Better World” with one mission: Make the world better through sport.

Start of by Read more…

Earth Day Network & Earth Day Canada: Making Earth Day Every Day

I want you to act out.

I promise you won’t get in trouble. I can also promise you won’t be the only one. In fact you will be joining hundreds of millions of people in 184 countries around the world.

I’m talking about a global movement known simply as Earth Day.

It was created in 1970 by a U.S. Senator, after he witnessed the devastation of the 1969 California oil spill. He wanted to leverage the emerging awareness of air and water pollution and combine it with the social energy created by the anti-war movement to force environmental protection onto the national political agenda. And so on the 22nd of April, 1970, 20 million Americans participated in massive coast-to-coast rallies to bring attention to conversation and force political leaders to listen to their concerns.

And it worked.

The first Earth Day led to the creation of the United States Environmental Protection Agency and the Read more…

Got Some Change? Introducing: Small Change Fund

Small Change Fund is an unique Canadian charity using small change to make a big difference in communities from coast to coast, and around the world.  It represents an important trend in crowd funding that uses an innovative model of online giving that empowers individual donors to support grassroots groups. As co-founder Ruth Richardson states, “We’re tapping into individuals that together can make a huge impact. We wanted to bust it open and make grassroots projects visible and accessible to anybody”.

Ruth also emphasizes, there’s no other organization like Small Change Fund in Canada. The Small Change approach gives concrete answers to some of the most pressing questions that face donors. Where does my money go? What is the outcome? Why does it matter? It also tackles the often-insurmountable challenges faced by community groups. How do we raise money? How can we spread our message? What media tools will raise our Read more…

Recycle for a Cause: Turning Trash into Treasure

What if your plastic shopping bag or the ring pull tab from your Coke can could help pay for a child’s education?

Recycle for a Cause, a campaign launched in the UAE, allows for just that kind of wonder—turning your trash into treasure.

How so?

Plastic bags and ring pull tabs collected from the community are sent to the Philippines and used to create and sell high quality merchandise as a source of livelihood for Filipino families in poverty.

The Recycle for a Cause campaign has been launched by Abu Dhabi Cause Connect (ADCC) in support of the Philippine Community Fund (PFC), which helps to provide shelter, food and education for children who are rescued from living on dump sites. PCF is a UK registered charity that works to free Filipino children and their families from the effects of poverty. The Recycle for a Cause product line alone provides employment for over Read more…

UNICEF: Getting Children Climate Ready

What does climate change mean to you? In the UK it often feels like a series of scientific debates and middle class people wondering if we’ll have a thriving wine industry in 30 years.

For many children in the developing world, though, it means destruction, death, poverty and no chance to go to school. Climate change is happening now and it is the most vulnerable children in countries not responsible for messing with our climate that are paying the price.

UNICEF – Climate kid shows you how children will have to adapt if we do nothing.

The World’s governments know all about the challenge of climate change. At the Copenhagen climate conference in 2009 developed countries promised to raise an extra $100 billion a year by 2020 for developing countries for climate change. This money is to be evenly split between trying to prevent further rises in global temperatures and helping to adapt Read more…