green jobs

The President’s Climate Action Plan | Executive Office of the President

While no single step can reverse the effects of climate change, we have a moral obligation to future generations to leave them a planet that is not polluted and damaged. Through steady, responsible action to cut carbon pollution, we can protect our children’s health and begin to slow the effects of climate change so that we leave behind a cleaner, more stable environment.

In 2009, President Obama made a pledge that by 2020, America would reduce its greenhouse gas emissions in the range of 17 percent below 2005 levels if all other major economies agreed to limit their emissions as well. Today, the President remains firmly committed to that goal and to building on the progress of his first term to help put us and the world on a sustainable long-term trajectory. Thanks in part to the Administration’s success in doubling America’s use of wind, solar, and geothermal energy and in establishing the toughest fuel economy standards in our history, we are creating new jobs, building new industries, and reducing dangerous carbon pollution which contributes to climate change. In fact, last year, carbon emissions from the energy sector fell to the lowest level in two decades. At the same time, while there is more work to do, we are more energy secure than at any time in recent history. In 2012, America’s net oil imports fell to the lowest level in 20 years and we have become the world’sleading producer of natural gas – the cleanest-burning fossil fuel.

Read the whole plan at whitehouse.gov.

Judo Inequality

“Think about it this way. We’re killing people in foreign lands in order to extract 200-million-year-old sunlight. Then we burn it . . . in order to boil water to create steam to drive a turbine to generate electricity. We frack our own backyards and pollute our rivers, or we blow up our mountaintops just miles from our nation’s capital for an hour of electricity, when we could just take what’s falling free from the sky.”

– Sungevity founder, Danny Kennedy –

From “The Secret to Solar Power,” (New York Times, August 9, 2012), by Jeff Himmelman

Subconsciously but in good conscience, Danny Kennedy has framed a solar version of the new “Judo Economy” paradigm. In his “Judo Economy” energy framework, massive amounts of naturally incoming energy are reflected and redirected without impacting and hollowing out the earth’s layered crust, breaking up shale formations, absorbing and contaminating fresh water supplies, or inciting earthquake and volcanic instability. Naturally occurring momentum is deployed as a positive force to society’s advantage as opposed to boxing with the inevitable and unmovable, absorbing one crushing body blow after another. (more…)

Green consumer products: Good? Or just less bad? | The Socially Conscious Consumer

How can we create products that provide a net good for the planet and for its inhabitants? I often focus on this question because it’s a key challenge facing business leaders and consumers who seek to promote sustainable lifestyles through the purchase and use of consumer products.

Unfortunately, while we have made incremental steps by creating products that are “less bad,” we haven’t even scratched the surface of what we really need: products that are “good.” “Less bad” initiatives, such as smaller caps on water bottles, are small steps in the right direction. Yet they only slow the rate of environmental destruction. In other words, they buy us a few more seconds before we crash into the wall, when what we need to do is turn the car around.

Definitions of a “good” product can vary, but this is mine: from a holistic, systems-based perspective, the product produces a positive and regenerative effect on our ecosystem from start to finish, encompassing the entire supply chain and including the impact consumers have when they use and dispose of the product. Instead of degrading resources and leaving the world worse off, a good product contributes toward restoring the planet and creating a more habitable environment for future generations.

Read this entire post from Jeffrey Hollender at McKinsey’s The Socially Conscious Consumer.

Plant, projects help Napoleon earn title of ‘America’s Number One Solar Small Town’ | Toledo Blade

NAPOLEON — Michael Peck still finds it amazing that a tiny area smack in the middle of rural northwest Ohio can have such a large solar footprint.

Granted, since last February, the city of Napoleon has been home to a solar panel-making operation headed by Mr. Peck, chairman of Isofoton North America Inc., an offspring of Spanish solar panel Isofoton.

But Isofoton North America’s $30 million plant, which employs 30 workers, isn’t the only connection to the solar industry in Henry County, Mr. Peck noted. AP Alternatives LLC, which makes and installs racks to hold solar panels, is running successfully in nearby Ridgeville Corners. (more…)

Red, White and Green: The True Colors of America’s Clean Tech Jobs | DBL Investors

September 2012—a new white paper from DBL Shows Red States Lead in Green Job Growth

Clean tech may cre­ate a highly par­ti­san debate in Wash­ing­ton D.C., but in the rest of coun­try, it cre­ates jobs. A new report exam­ines the sharp con­trasts between polit­i­cal rhetoric and on-the-ground real­ity, and shows that red states – not blue states – are lead­ing clean tech or “green job” growth.

The report, “Red, White and Green: The True Col­ors of America’s Clean Tech Jobs” authored by Nancy Pfund, Man­ag­ing Part­ner, DBL Investors and Michael Lazar, a Yale Uni­ver­sity grad­u­ate stu­dent, demon­strates the grow­ing impor­tance of the clean tech indus­try in both red and blue states, and espe­cially in swing states. (more…)

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