Sustainable development is economic growth which meets the needs of the present without damaging the lives of future generations. In other words, it doesn’t cause so much damage that people in the future might not be able to live healthy lives. It also means that we don’t destroy so much of the natural world that other
Inspired by the ecological system of giant trees, the Urban Skyfarm is a prototype vertical urban farm project. Designed to support local food production and distribution, it also improves environmental quality through water and air filtration and renewable energy production. First Place Winner in the 2013 Green Dot Awards Concept category, The Urban Skyfarm is
The “green building” trend is often associated with helping the environment by using eco-friendly materials and energy-saving techniques. These practices are designed to help improve the health of the people living in them, too. And scientists from Harvard School of Public Health are now reporting evidence that they can indeed help people feel better, including
Sometimes the best ideas for conveying a concept are those that are outside our personal or cultural comfort level, or those that use a commonplace item in an unexpected way, so that they force us to rethink what we think we know. And because sustainability is one of those concepts that can be hard to
I learned about Iron Edison last July when I posted this story on Clean Technica. I was impressed because owners Brandon Williams and his wife offer “off-gridders” and others a viable energy storage solution that allows many renewable plants run on a 24/7 basis. And since the storage question remains one of the fundamental drawbacks
Part 7 in a series on planned obsolescence Too much of a good thing will sometimes get dressed for the party wearing the wrong clothes. The most significant difficulty with disposable plastic has nothing to do with its practicality or usefulness – as it happens to be remarkably useful in a stunning number of formulations
Companies are looking to renewable energy in growing numbers, both for cost-savings in the long term, but also for public relations benefits. Whatever the motivation, these companies are moving markets by creating demand for renewables in their many forms. The list below is a top 20 of companies that have gone solar. The list contains
Our aching planet just needs you to be thoughtful as you plow into your next venture. If you are, everyone wins, and wins sustainably into the indefinite future. A sustainable business considers the impacts of every facet of its operation and then attempts to address each, from paper consumption to human resources, in a way
Smack dab on the front page of the Sunday New York Times yesterday was some positive news out of the Middle East. Seems architect Norman Foster of firm Foster and Partners has, along with the government of the United Arab Emirates (UAE), developed a fully sustainable city called Masdar. While it seems like a bit
Despite all the bad news we’ve received due to issues in the financial sector over the last two years, it turns out some banks are doing significant work greater than the occasional philanthropic project. Mark Stoiber of Fast Company has outlined some of these cutting edge banks and the interesting work they are doing in
With corporate hiring returning to a deep freeze and the Dow hanging north of 10,000 by its fingertips, CSR programs focused on eco-efficiencies — LED lighting in…um…the freezer section — remain priorities for the retail market. This is particularly the case when companies open or renovate new facilities. A Sunday Chicago Tribune Business feature by
Chicago is most notably home to Wrigley Field, the world’s first sky scrapper, and the deep-dish pizza. What most might not know is that inside the Windy City there are more LEED-certified buildings than anywhere else in the U.S. and the city will soon boast the largest LEED for Neighborhood Development project where residents live
On Monday, the E.P.A. announced that over 100 cement kilns will have to reduce the pollution they emit. This will be very costly to the cement industry, with each producer estimated at having to spend around $1 billion a year to keep up with the E.P.A.’s regulations. A majority of the mercury and particulate matter
Apega/WENN Today’s Chicago Tribune business section has a stunning report on the Republic of South Korea’s $25 million plan to reduce energy consumption at some of downtown Chicago’s largest skyscrapers. The operation will focus on retrofitting HVAC and lighting systems in up to 14 buildings. Joining Korea in the agreement are the Building Owners and
Leading the way for the green evolution for the Hilton Garden Inn franchise, the Hilton Garden Inn Gatlinburg, drawing inspiration at the doorstep of the Great Smoky Mountains National Park, has embarked on the fast-track to bring this upscale hotel into the green business movement. Opening in May, 2009, this 118-room hotel is nestled across
It’s the time of year when people are making resolutions to lose weight, better manage their finances, better manage their anger, and myriad other things. Is increasing your commitment to environmental sustainability on that list? As I wrote in my very first post for The Inspired Economist in the fall of 2008, the neat thing
One of the biggest problems with solar cells currently on the market is that they are extremely easy to break. Companies intent on manufacturing any sort of solar powered products have to find solutions, and few have yet been perfect. Hoping to change this trend, DuPont recently announced the launch of two new lines of
Which came first, the chicken or the egg? In the case of St. Thomas 7-Hot Pepper Sauce, it was definitely the chicken. Without the chicken, there wouldn’t be the fertilizer to grow the hot peppers to make the hot sauce that the sent kids from the St. Thomas projects in New Orleans Lower Garden District
This new column highlights the top economic stories of the week. At the outset of this week, it looked like the Swine flu might be the largest influenza epidemic since the virus that wiped out a significant portion of the world’s population at the end of the first World War. Local economies everywhere have been
New York City’s Empire State Building is the latest poster child for green innovation. Earlier this week, Anthony Malkin, president of W&M Properties, the company that owns the building, announced that they would begin a $500 million self-financed program to renovate the world famous landmark – $100 million of which would be used to reduce the building’s energy consumption and carbon emissions.
Legacy electricity grids, the current distribution systems used for a century in the US, are highly inefficient…7%, never makes it to the user, lost at the transmission and distribution levels…..Environmentalists and others have been pushing for smart-grid technology for over a decade because it will enable consumers to use less electricity and benefit the environment.
Starting on Friday, February 27th, 10,000 students and other young people from across the country will converge upon Washington D.C. to demand immediate action on green jobs and climate change.
The Power Shift ’09 (www.powershift09.org) summit kicks off on Friday, February 27 and culminates on Monday, March 2, when the youth and their families will don green hard hats and gather on the steps of the Capitol.
Wells Fargo has passed the $2 billion mark in lending for Leadership in Energy and Environmental Design (LEED®) certified buildings. Maybe not too surprising, the bank was one of the first to be LEED pre-certified for New Construction. The company said that “of the buildings financed by Wells Fargo, 28 percent are LEED-rated, 37 percent