Dallas Cowboys Go Blue (with a Greener Stadium)

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It’s time for Super Bowl XLIII, and the NFL is powering the entire event with renewable energy, as well as planting trees to offset carbon created by activities related to the big game. For 16 years, “going green” has been a part of planning and producing the Super Bowl. But the Super Bowl isn’t the only green venue in the NFL world.

In a press release last October, the Dallas Cowboys, along with the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), announced that the Cowboys were on a path “to be the first sports stadium to gain recognition in the EPA’s National Environmental Performance Track program.” This bold action is in conjunction with the design and construction of the new Dallas Cowboys Stadium, which will be open for business in Arlington, Texas next summer.

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My 5: Elizabeth Frisch, Culture Technologies

January 30, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog, Consultants, Ecopreneurs, Engineers, Front Page, My 5, Texas

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Blue Planet Green Living asked Elizabeth Frisch, founder and president of Culture Technologies, “What are the five most important things we can do to save the planet?”
* Eat less and lose weight. We eat 30-50 percent more calories than we need! That’s a lot of environment used up to produce that food!…

* Drive less or more fuel efficiently. Bike, walk, carpool, telecommute, trip chain, plan your trips. Buy an electric bike, if it’s too far….

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Miriam Kashia, International Editor/Contributing Writer

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For 18 years, Miriam Kashia worked as a psychotherapist in private practice. She also has a long history of doing social justice volunteer work. In 2005, Miriam departed Iowa for Namibia, where she served two years in the Peace Corps. While in Namibia, she was a community health worker with orphans and vulnerable children in a rural area….

Miriam recently took on another volunteer position as Blue Planet Green Living’s international editor. She is also a contributing writer, when she has time between her extensive volunteer and work activities.

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Culture Change Drives Environmental Improvement

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“What I’m doing is socially engineering organizations by working with employees so they can shift their company culture and drive business performance — and even personal performance,” says Elizabeth Frisch, president of Culture Technologies, Inc. and director of development for A Nurtured World. “

One of the things we’re committed to is inspiring people, enrolling them, and getting them connected with their passions in the workplace. This is just like we do on the consumer side with A Nurtured World, getting people to commit to green living in their home, so that being environmental is not about suffering, deprivation, and something else that is on my To-Do list. Instead, you create space around it, so that it’s this open frontier. There’s all this possibility!”

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Shelter from the Storm – A Day of Service Honoring Dr. King

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Sewing machines whir all around me, and a blur of activity fills the room. Quilts in various states of progress are everywhere: on the floor, on tables, held in the air for viewing, packed into sacks to give away. This is no ordinary quilt group — most of the participants have never quilted, yet they throw themselves into the activity with joy and enthusiasm. The camaraderie that binds us together is real. We are here to do a service to our homeless neighbors, temporary residents of Shelter House just down the street.

On this day of service honoring Dr. Martin Luther King Jr., more than 100 people have volunteered their time at Trinity Episcopal Church in Iowa City, IA. It’s a diverse group of many ethnicities and ages, and an equal mix of males and females. For most participants, the common denominator is a connection to education. Local schools and the university are closed in honor of Dr. King, and the participants today are mostly students, teachers, professors, and retirees. Yet, we have among us a doctor, a journalist, a freelance writer, an attorney, and others I have yet to meet….

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A “Missionary” for Sustainable Energy

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“I want my life to make a difference,” says John Bahr, Ph.D. An active man in his early 70s, Bahr has enriched his retirement years by involving himself in environmental issues. Starting out with very little knowledge, he has become a powerful advocate for Wisconsin’s sustainable energy movement. “This work satisfies my desire to do something worthwhile with my life while I have the opportunity,” he says. I spoke with Bahr from his Wisconsin home. I wanted to learn more about the work that he does and how it fulfills him as a retiree.

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Green Consultant Boosts Efficiency and Profits

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“Being environmentally responsible is not just about meeting the regulations and complying with the laws anymore, but that you’re actually setting the bar for other industries in your sector, and that you’re using good environmental management to expand your business and to make a profit. As an environmental consultant, I help you find a new way to innovate and become the most efficient, to squeeze every dollar that you can out of what you’re earning,” says Molly Long, president of A.W.E. Consulting.

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My 5: Molly Long, A.W.E. Consulting

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Blue Planet Green Living asked environmental auditor and consultant Molly Long, president of A.W.E. Consulting, BPGL: “What are the five most important things we can do to save the planet?”

LONG: I think the right people doing the right jobs is number one, because it really does take that— the people with the knowledge doing the right thing….

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ISO 14001: Comply with Laws, Prevent Pollution, Continually Improve

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“When something goes wrong, a company has an accident or a mistake, we immediately blame that company for not doing things right. And then, inside that company, it goes down from the plant manager, whose neck is on the line, and he starts looking for somebody he can blame,” says Molly Long. “There’s a hierarchy of blaming that occurs. It’s the picture of the two-story outhouse. No one wants to be on the bottom floor.”

As president of A.W.E. Consulting, Long audits compliance with ISO 14001, which, she describes as, “an international standard that helps people coalesce their environmental management into something that’s meaningful and trackable.” When a business seeks ISO 14001 certification, it enters into a process that changes that blaming mentality by putting responsibility where it belongs: at the top.

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Polar Bear Sculpture Floats Down Thames

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London 26th January 2009:

A stark reminder of the dangers of global warming arrived in London today, as a life-like 16ft high sculpture of an iceberg featuring a stranded polar bear and its cub was floated on the Thames. The sculpture was specially commissioned to mark the launch of the new Natural History Television channel Eden, which starts today and features programming including Planet Earth and Attenborough Explores Our Fragile World at 10pm.

Broadcaster and eminent wildlife conservationist, Sir David Attenborough says: “The melting of the polar bears’ sea ice habitat is one of the most pressing environmental concerns of our time. I commend Eden for highlighting the issue; we need to do what we can to protect the world’s largest land carnivores from extinction.”

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Red Tape, Regulations, and Environmental Crimes

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“When I went to Ireland recently,” says environmental auditor and consultant Molly Long, “I sat in a pub with a pint of Guinness while being lectured to by an average citizen of Dublin about what environmental terrorists we Americans are. He didn’t know we were environmental consultants. It was a really interesting perspective. He said we do a terrible job of protecting the environment.”

Long is a former hazardous waste inspector for the state of Indiana. Today she is in high demand as an ISO 14001 auditor and an environmental consultant, two services she provides through A.W.E. [Agriculture. Wildlife. Environmental.] Consulting, Inc. As an enforcer of laws, an environmental auditor, and a consultant, Long has worked extensively with a wide variety of businesses, industries, and government groups. In this interview, she brings broad perspective to the topic of environmental laws and regulations.

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Good Jobs, Green Jobs National Conference, Feb. 4-6, 2009

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The Good Jobs, Green Jobs National Conference will take place in Washington, DC, February 4 – 6, 2009 at the Marriott Wardman Park Hotel and Omni Shoreham Hotel.

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Notes from Nepal: Climate Change Reaches the Himalayas

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In Jagdish Poudel’s first entry in the “Notes from Nepal” series, he told us that he would soon be going to the Himalayas to teach uneducated rural residents about climate change. Last week, Poudel, along with fellow environmental science M.Sc. students Aseem Kanchan, Raju Pokharel, and Mausam Khanal, journeyed to Khudi, high in the Annapurna Mountain Range. What follows is Jagdish’s second entry, in which he tells us about giving a presentation to Khudi villagers, who live in a place where the once-abundant snow has turned to rain, and the mountainsides are losing their coat of white.

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Healthy Living: Good for You and Good for the Planet

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Picture that slim, healthy person you used to be. Imagine, like a sculpture waiting to be revealed by chipping away a block of marble, that the real you is still inside of the body you’re wearing today. Maybe you’re not obese, but you feel like you’ve put on a heavy overcoat that won’t come off. You can do something about it. But you can’t afford to wait.

It’s time to make changes to bring back your health. If you’re serious about losing weight and regaining your vitality, try the following tips. Some of them will have the added benefit of helping the planet while helping you achieve your goals.

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An Open Letter to President Obama

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Dear Mr. President,

I am not a soldier in your army, but I am out here working in your trenches. I am not carrying a gun in Iraq or Afghanistan, but I am carrying your message. I am a retired worker, an active environmentalist and a true-blue American. I am too old to be lied to by my government anymore, but too young to lose the hope that you might be able to change things. I am too realistic to expect miracles from you, but idealistic enough to always dream of a better world.

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Uniting for a Greener and Safer World

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There’s celebration afoot, as our nation prepares to swear in its first African American president. But tomorrow, after the last balloon has floated away, the real work will begin for our young leader. We must not expect him to do it alone.

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Elias Simpson, Contributing Writer

January 19, 2009 by  
Filed under Blog, Elias Simpson, Europe, Front Page, Iowa

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Elias Simpson earned a bachelor’s degree in English and French from the University of Iowa. He spent a year in France in 2007, and traveled to Prague, Venice, Barcelona, and London, among other cities in France, including Nice and Grenoble. He has volunteered for the university’s environmental coalition and is a registered member of the Iowa City Bike Library. He will be attending graduate school next fall, to study poetry writing.

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Eco-Friendly Traveling Provides Uncommon Pleasures

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Most of us who care already know that traveling and environmentalism are best kept on different conscious levels. If the draw of foreign cultures is strong enough to get you on an airplane across the ocean, then you might be interested in ways to travel without a heavy environmental impact. Aside from the “offset carbon emissions” check box that airlines now provide at a small charge, you can take a more active approach to eco-traveling.

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Ansel Adams at 100

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Photographer and naturalist Ansel Adams (1902-1984) is surely one of the most accomplished and ubiquitous artists in American history, his career a rare intersection between extraordinary popular success and widespread critical acclaim. Though now decades old, his striking black-and-white photographs still maintain a large cultural presence through museums, books, magazines, calendars, coffee mugs, posters, and clothing. Almost every American has had some contact with Adams’ work, if only in passing.

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Notes from Serbia: Ending Litter through Laws and Education

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Blue Planet Green Living invites our readers around the world to send us reports about the environment in their home countries. In the first of the “Notes from ….” series, we published a post from Jagdish Poudel, an environmental science student from Nepal. Today, we are pleased to share a report from Snezana Pavlovic, a 25-year-old student of Balkan languages from Niš, Serbia. “Avoiding pollution and ecology are my passion and hobby,” Snezana writes.

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