Friday, February 25, 2005

EERE Network News -- 02/23/05

A weekly newsletter from the U.S. Department of Energy's (DOE) Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE). The EERE Network News is also available on the Web at:

February 23, 2005

News and Events

Energy Connections

  • LNG Terminals Move Ahead in the Gulf of Mexico

News and Events

DOE Project Leads to New Hydrogen Fueling Station in California

Photo of an SUV at a hydrogen fuel pump.

A fuel-cell-powered Hyundai Tuscon pulls up to the new hydrogen fueling station.
Credit: ChevronTexaco

ChevronTexaco opened its first hydrogen fueling station in Chino, California, last week, joined by Assistant Secretary of Energy David Garman and representatives of Hyundai-Kia and UTC Fuel Cells. The station is a major part of the DOE's Hydrogen "Learning Demonstration," which brings together automobile makers and energy companies to test fuel cell vehicles and hydrogen fueling systems in real-world conditions. Hyundai Tucson and Kia Sportage SUVs, powered by fuel cells manufactured by UTC Fuel Cells, will operate throughout Southern California and refuel at the ChevronTexaco hydrogen station. The hydrogen is produced on-site from natural gas, but the station will also have the future capability to convert other renewable fuel sources, such as ethanol, into hydrogen for refueling fuel cell vehicles.

"On a day-to-day basis, [these projects] will give our researchers and scientists on-the-road experience with hydrogen fuel vehicles and demonstrate what we need to do to make these technologies even better," said Assistant Secretary Garman. "By doing so, it is our hope that these clean, zero-emission vehicles will become as common as the cars we know today." See the press releases from DOE, ChevronTexaco, and Hyundai.

While the Chino project is part of President Bush's Hydrogen Fuel Initiative, his brother—Florida Governor Jeb Bush—has his own hydrogen energy initiative, called "H2 Florida." Last week, Governor Bush attended the groundbreaking in Orlando for another ChevronTexaco hydrogen fueling station, which will be Florida's first, and announced plans for new legislation to move the H2 Florida initiative forward. Under the proposed Hydrogen Energy Technologies Act, Florida will set aside $12.9 million to test and demonstrate the cutting-edge hydrogen technology and provide $2.1 million in new tax incentives for businesses that invest in hydrogen technologies. Participants in the groundbreaking included Ford Motor Company and Progress Energy. See the press releases from the Florida Energy Office and Progress Energy.

DOE Awards $87.5 Million to 12 Vehicle Efficiency Projects

DOE announced last week that it will award $87.5 million to 12 projects that will develop more fuel-efficient passenger and commercial vehicles. Seven of the 12 projects will involve research in advanced combustion technologies, and three of those seven relate to homogeneous charge compression ignition (HCCI). In HCCI engines, fuel is pre-mixed with air, as in spark-ignition engines, but the engine combusts the mixture using compression, like a diesel engine. HCCI engines burn with high efficiency and low emissions, but the combustion process is difficult to control. The seven advanced-combustion projects will also explore such technologies as premixed charge compression ignition (like HCCI, but with a non-homogeneous mixture of fuel and air), variable valve timing, variable compression ratios, variable nozzle turbocharging, and low-pressure loop-cooled exhaust gas recirculation (EGR). In addition, Mack Trucks, Inc will develop and demonstrate an air-power-assist system that works with a commercial diesel engine.

The remaining five projects relate to technologies that convert waste heat from engines into useful electrical or mechanical energy. One promising technology—under examination by three of the five projects—is "turbocompounding," in which exhaust gas from a conventional turbocharger is passed through a second turbocharger to provide more torque and energy to the engine's crankshaft.

DOE's FreedomCAR and Vehicle Technologies Program is providing funding for the 12 projects. See the DOE press release, and for more information about HCCI engines, see Sandia National Laboratories' Combustion Research Facility Web site. A detailed diagram of a turbocompound system is also available on the Web site from Scania, a Swedish manufacturer of heavy vehicles and engines.

EPA Launches Clean Energy Partnerships with 12 States and D.C.

The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) launched two new clean energy partnerships with states last week. EPA and the National Association of Regulatory Utility Commissioners announced their formation of the EPA-State Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy Projects on February 16th. Utility commissioners from five states—Arkansas, Connecticut, Hawaii, Minnesota and New Mexico—plus the District of Columbia are participating in the projects, which will explore cost-effective energy efficiency, renewable energy, and clean distributed generation. See the EPA press release and fact sheet (PDF 42 KB). Download Acrobat Reader.

On Friday, EPA launched the new Clean Energy-Environment State Partnership Program with 10 states: California, Connecticut, Georgia, Minnesota, New Jersey, New Mexico, New York, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and Texas (three states—Connecticut, Minnesota, and New Mexico—are participating in both partnerships). Under the voluntary program, the EPA will assist states as they develop and implement action plans to improve air quality, decrease energy use, reduce greenhouse gas emissions, and enhance economic development. See the EPA press release and Clean Energy-Environment State Partnership Program Web site.

Massachusetts Offers $25 Million for Renewable Energy Credits

The Massachusetts Technology Collaborative (MTC) announced in late January that its Renewable Energy Trust is offering $25 million to support renewable energy projects that will generate up to 50 megawatts of clean power for the New England electric grid. The trust's Massachusetts Green Power Partnership provides long-term funding commitments to purchase renewable energy certificates (RECs) and other price supports for clean energy projects. The new request for proposals (RFP) starts the second round of awards; the first round led to $32 million in funding commitments for six projects that will generate close to 100 megawatts of clean energy, including two large wind power plants (covered in last week's newsletter), a 50-megawatt biomass power plant, and small installations of landfill gas, hydropower, and solar energy systems. Proposals for the new RFP are due on March 18th. See the press release and RFP from the Massachusetts Technology Collaborative.

Although most of MTC's commitments to purchase RECs are for future projects, the agency is already buying RECs from a landfill gas project. MTC buys the RECs and then auctions them off to electricity providers, which can either use them to meet the requirements of the Massachusetts Renewable Portfolio Standard (RPS) or to meet the needs of any voluntary green power program. In early February, MTC had Evolution Markets LLC auction off 5,011 RECs, which sold to two successful bidders at an average price of $51.12. Some companies are also bypassing the MTC, selling RECs directly into the Massachusetts power market, as Conservation Resources Group did for a New York landfill project in 2004. See the press releases from Evolution Markets and the Conservation Resources Group (PDF 53 KB). Download Acrobat Reader.

RECs represent the attributes of electricity generated from renewable energy sources, and are usually sold separately from the actual electricity. According to a new DOE report, an estimated 3 million megawatt-hours (MWh) of RECs were sold in 2003. Fourteen of the 18 states with RPS policies use RECs, creating an annual potential market of about 13 million MWh. According to the report, the REC market could reach 65 million MWh by 2010. See the report, "Emerging Markets for Renewable Energy Certificates: Opportunities and Challenges" (PDF 2.0 MB).

First Hybrid SUV Makes List of Top Twelve Green Vehicles

The world's first hybrid-electric sport utility vehicle (SUV), the Ford Escape Hybrid, is also the first gasoline-powered SUV to make the list of 12 "greenest" vehicles. The American Council for an Energy Efficient Economy (ACEEE) issued its eighth annual environmental guide to cars and trucks, "ACEEE's Green Book Online," last week, including its list of the greenest vehicles of 2005. The Honda Insight, Toyota Prius, and Honda Civic Hybrid again hold top spots on the list, although the number one green vehicle is still the natural-gas-powered Honda Civic GX. But your car doesn't have to be a hybrid or alternative-fuel model to make the list: other top green cars include the Toyota Corolla and Echo; the Toyota Matrix and its twin, the Pontiac Vibe; the Nissan Sentra; the Mazda 3; and the Ford Focus and Ford Focus Wagon. ACEEE ranks vehicles based on their levels of noxious emissions, fuel economy, and greenhouse gas emissions. See the ACEEE press release and list of the top twelve greenest vehicles.

Photo of the Hyundai Portico.

Hyundai's Portico concept vehicle is designed to accept a hybrid drive.
Credit: Hyundai

Hyundai may be the next car company to join the ranks of hybrid vehicle producers: at the Chicago Car Show in early February, the company unveiled its "Portico" concept vehicle, a six-seat vehicle that it bills as "designed to accept Hyundai's hybrid drive system." The hybrid Portico would feature two electric motors: a 100-kilowatt motor driving the front wheels and a 60-kilowatt motor driving the rear wheels, providing efficient all-wheel-drive capability. According to Hyundai, a lithium-ion battery would power the motors. See the Hyundai press release.

DOE Offers $1 Million to Help Industries Save Energy

DOE announced last week that $1 million in new funds are available to help industrial plants find ways to save energy. The new solicitation offers up to $100,000 per facility to carry out a "Plant-Wide Assessment" to examine energy-intensive processes, determine which plant systems offer the greatest energy savings potential, and identify specific actions to achieve those savings. Proposals are due by May 3rd. See the solicitation and the Plant-Wide Assessment Web page on DOE's Industrial Technologies Program Web site.

One company that may be interested in carrying out some plant-wide assessments is Modine Manufacturing Company, a Wisconsin-based manufacturer of heating and cooling equipment. In late January, the company launched an initiative to cut energy use at its 35 worldwide manufacturing facilities by 12 percent. See the press release from Modine.

Energy Connections

LNG Terminals Move Ahead in the Gulf of Mexico

Companies continue to make progress developing new terminals for importing liquefied natural gas (LNG) into the United States. Shell announced last week that it has received regulatory approval to build an offshore LNG terminal in the Gulf of Mexico, 38 miles from Cameron, Louisiana. The Shell terminal will have the ability to gasify one billion cubic feet per day of natural gas for use in the United States. ConocoPhilips has also proposed building an LNG terminal in the Gulf, about 56 miles south of Louisiana, with a capacity of 1.5 billion cubic feet of natural gas per day. Another project in the Gulf, under design by Tidelands Oil and Gas Corporation, will be located off the coast of Mexico to supply natural gas to Mexico. See the press releases from Shell, ConocoPhilips, and Tidelands.

In terms of on-shore LNG terminals in the Gulf area, Cheniere Energy, Inc. is now spearheading four LNG projects. Its proposed LNG terminal in Freeport, Texas, won approval in early January and is now under construction. In late January, the company applied to build a second LNG terminal in Cameron Parish, Louisiana, called "Creole Trail"; the company has already earned approval to build the "Sabine Pass" LNG terminal there, and plans to start construction in late March. The company has also applied to build an LNG terminal in Corpus Christi, Texas. See the Cheniere Energy press releases from January 11th and January 26th.

Other plans for North American LNG terminals include a ChevronTexaco proposal for a terminal eight miles off the coast of Baja California, Mexico, which earned approval in early January; a planned expansion of the Dominion Cove Point LNG terminal in Maryland; and a proposed LNG terminal off the coast of Massachusetts. Tractebel LNG North American LLC is proposing to build the Massachusetts LNG terminal about 10 miles south of Gloucester. See the ChevronTexaco press release, the Dominion Cove Point Web site, and the Tractebel press release (PDF 33 KB). Download Acrobat Reader.

This newsletter is funded by DOE's Office of Energy Efficiency and Renewable Energy (EERE) and is also available on the EERE news page.

::: ENN Daily Newsletter - Friday, February 25, 2005 :::


Week in Review: February 21st - 25th

The violent land grab in Brazil claimed another victim this week. Dionisio Julio Ribeiro was killed on Tuesday, ten days after American nun Dorothy Stang met a similar fate.

Island-Building Covers Coral Reefs, Alters Gulf Environment

DUBAI, United Arab Emirates — Stroll on Dubai's shore and dead coral crunches underfoot. The normally crystal- clear Gulf is fogged with silt. Eroding beaches need truckloads of sand to stay in place.

Board Backs Proposed Nuclear Waste Dump at Utah Reservation

SALT LAKE CITY — A federal licensing board approved a proposed nuclear waste dump Thursday, reversing an earlier ruling that there was too much risk of a plane crash from a nearby air base.

City of Albuquerque, Environmentalists Settle Silvery Minnow Dispute

ALBUQUERQUE, N.M. — The city of Albuquerque and environmental groups reached a settlement Wednesday in a five-year legal battle over the endangered Rio Grande silvery minnow.

'Green Building' Trend Grows

Las Vegas home builders are putting in low-energy appliances, heat-resistant windows and desert landscaping in an effort to conserve natural resources, part of the "green building" trend in residential construction.

Senate Considering Revival of Pesticide Reporting System

SALEM, Ore. — Six years after the Legislature voted for a system to report on the use of pesticides in Oregon, no such program exists, except on paper.

Some Dairy Farmers Worry about 'Organic' Milk Labels

Even in the cold of winter, Roman Stoltzfoos sends his organic dairy cows tramping out to pasture after milking them.

African Fossils Push Back Origins Of Humans, and Other Stories

After reevaluating the dates of a set of early human fossils, scientists have concluded that humans emerged as a species nearly 30,000 years earlier than once believed.

Justices Weigh Water Rights

WASHINGTON — Some San Joaquin Valley farmers had a tough row to hoe Wednesday as Supreme Court justices showed skepticism over the farmers' bid to sue the federal government.

Fire Ravages Forest Reserve Bordering Malaysian Airport, Administrative Capital

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Firefighters used helicopters to douse a fire sweeping through a massive forest reserve bordering Malaysia's administrative capital and the international airport, reports said Thursday.


Green Energy Resources Announces Expansion to Japan and Singapore
— By Green Energy Resources

Exact Locations of Landslides Can Be Discovered Before They Happen
— By Geoka

Action on Heavy Metals among Key Decisions at UNEP Council Meeting
— By UN Environment Programme

Ice Melting Everywhere
— By Earth Policy Institute

Canadian Budget Good News for Eastern Salmon and Economy
— By Atlantic Salmon Federation

Congo River to Power Africa out of Poverty, Says Senior Business Leader
— By UN Environment Programme

::: ENN Daily Newsletter - Thursday, February 24, 2005 :::


Retreat of Antarctic Ice Shelves Is Not New, Report Says

LONDON — The current retreat of ice shelves in the Antarctic due to global warming is nothing new -- but this time the problem is manmade and therefore potentially more serious, according to research released Wednesday.

Study Proposes Plastic Bag Ban in Kenya to Manage Growing Waste Problem

NAIROBI — Kenya should ban flimsy plastic bags and slap a hefty tax on the use of thicker ones to rid the East African nation of a growing environmental and health menace, according to a report released Wednesday.

Brazil Environmentalist Shot in Rain Forest

RIO DE JANEIRO — A Brazilian environmentalist was killed in an Atlantic rain forest Tuesday night, only 10 days after a U.S. nun and activist against illegal logging was murdered in the Amazon jungle.

Bush, Schroeder Say Cooperation Possible on the Environment

MAINZ, Germany — U.S. President George W. Bush and German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder said they discussed ways Wednesday to protect the Earth's climate, stressing that differences over an accord to combat global warming should not prevent cooperation.

Tiger on Loose Near L.A. Shot and Killed

LOS ANGELES — Wildlife officials shot and killed a tiger Wednesday that had been roaming loose for 10 days near homes in rugged terrain, north of Los Angeles.

Trash from Canada Piling Up

Canadian waste dumped in Michigan surged, while state residents sent less junk to Michigan's landfills in 2004.

Climate Science Keeps on Ticking -- An ENN Commentary

If you didn't know what the Kyoto Protocol was all about a few weeks ago, you'd be hard pressed not to know now. The international agreement to reduce the heat trapping emissions that are causing global warming has been all over the news since it came into force last week.

Giant Panda Skeleton Found in 4,000-Year- Old Tomb

BEIJING — The skeleton of a giant panda has been found in a 4,000-year-old tomb in central China, Xinhua news agency said on Wednesday, adding that the now-endangered animals were apparently being hunted at that time.

Tribal Clashes over Water and Land in Central Kenya Leaves at Least Four Dead

NAIVASHA, Kenya — Maasai tribal fighters clashed with police after attacking rivals from the Kikuyu tribe Wednesday and at least four people were killed, the latest deaths in a monthlong dispute over scarce water and grazing land in central Kenya, officials said.


Investigation Finds "IMD" In Indonesia: JP Morgan Chase and BlueLinx Linked to Illegal Logging of Endangered Forests and Resulting Humanitarian Crisis
— By Rainforest Action Network

Rebuild Differently After the Tsunami, UNEP Advises
— By UN Environment Programme

::: ENN Daily Newsletter - Wednesday, February 23, 2005 :::


On Beyond Organic: Bodycareless - What's in Our Soap?

According to the FDA, 89 percent of ingredients in mainstream cosmetics haven't been safety tested by an independent agency.

Study Blames 20,000 Deaths a Year on Diesel Exhaust

WASHINGTON — Emissions from old diesel engines cause more than 20,000 Americans a year to die sooner than they would have otherwise, an environmental group estimated Tuesday.

Bird Flu in Flies No Threat to Animals or Humans, Expert Says

HO CHI MINH CITY — Flies can carry the bird flu virus which has killed 46 people in Asia but there is no evidence they can spread the killer disease to other animals or humans, an animal health expert said on Wednesday.

Ex-Wildlife Manager Agrees to Pay Fine

TUCSON, Ariz. — A former federal wildlife manager who says he moved about 400 protected tadpoles from a backyard pond to a refuge for their own safety has agreed to pay a $3,500 fine to avoid a criminal charge.

Umbra on Renting Hybrids and Sharing Cars

A reader asks advice guru Umbra Fisk where she can rent a hybrid. Turns out it's not as easy as one might like, though the option is spreading. But Umbra's got another suggestion for how city dwellers can drive a hybrid without buying one. Learn about car sharing, the hippest trend in urban living -- in Ask Umbra , today on the Grist Magazine website.

Up to 11 Wilderness Areas Could Join National Forest

As many as 11 and as few as zero new wilderness areas will be recommended for inclusion in the Monongahela National Forest, according to a recently released draft of an updated management plan for the 910,000-acre forest.

Wisconsin Group Complains to USDA of Dairy Organic Rules Violations

A Wisconsin advocacy group has filed a complaint with the U.S. Department of Agriculture saying that the Case Vander Eyk Dairy near Pixley has violated national organic rules that require pasture feeding of cows.

Bush, Schroeder to Make Pledges on Climate Change, Official Says

BERLIN — German Chancellor Gerhard Schroeder and U.S. President George W. Bush were expected to make pledges on efficient energy use and combating air pollution at their meeting Wednesday in Germany, a government official said.

Panelists Decry Bush Science Policies

WASHINGTON — The voice of science is being stifled in the Bush administration, with fewer scientists heard in policy discussions and money for research and advanced training being cut, according to panelists at a national science meeting.


Celebrities Have Greenfeet at the Oscars
— By

Great Ape Conservation Groups Work Together
— By Jane Goodall Institute / Dian Fossey Gorilla Fund International

Infectious Diseases Capitalizing on Environmental Decline
— By UN Environment Programme

::: ENN Daily Newsletter - Tuesday, February 22, 2005 :::


Coastlines Already Damaged by Pollution Suffered More from Tsunami than Others, Says U.N. Official

NAIROBI, Kenya — Coastlines already damaged by pollution and man's poor land management suffered more from the southeast Asian tsunami than those with healthy coral reefs and other natural protection, the U.N. environment chief said Monday.

Canada Not Planning to Ban Popular Lawn Pesticide

OTTAWA — Canada said Monday it did not plan to restrict the use of the popular garden pesticide 2,4-D and said it had found no evidence to support suggestions that the substance could cause cancer.

Great Salt Lake Mercury Worries Scientists

SALT LAKE CITY — Federal scientists studying the Great Salt Lake have found some of the highest levels of mercury ever measured anywhere -- prompting concern about some of the migratory birds that feed on the lake's brine shrimp.

Forest Fire Rages in Chile's Torres del Paine Park

SANTIAGO, Chile — Hundreds of firefighters battled a major blaze Monday in Chile's Torres del Paine National Park that forced wildlife to flee and obscured views of the famous Horns of Paine peaks at the height of the tourist season.

Cuba Calls on Citizens to Conserve Water to Confront Shortage

HAVANA — Cuba urged its citizens Monday to cut back on water use, announcing that new measures will be necessary to fight a long-lasting dry spell.

Brazil Vows Slowdown of Amazon Destruction

BRASILIA, Brazil — Destruction of Brazil's Amazon rain forest will slow down in 2005 after the murder of a U.S. nun prompted the government to launch an unprecedented crackdown on illegal loggers and ranchers, the head of Brazil's environment agency said Monday.

Tsunami-Hit Beach May Become Turtle Haven

KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia — Conservationists want to turn a popular Malaysian beach hit by the tsunami into a protected nesting area for endangered sea turtles, which hatched there for the first time in over a decade -- probably because of a drop-off in tourists after the disaster.

Agriculture Research Faces Cuts in Bush Plan

ORONO, Maine — All of the land-grant research facilities that serve Maine's agriculture industries -- potato, blueberry, apple, forestry and dairy -- are in jeopardy of losing their federal funding under President Bush's recent agricultural budget proposal. The $2.3 million in cuts represent more than one-third of the total $6 million research budget handled by the University of Maine and affects farmers and home gardeners throughout the state.


EPA Recognizes Solar- Powered Author
— By Debra Lynn Dadd

Green Energy Resources to Recognize US Forest Service Plan; Establishes Lead American Role in Emerging Renewable Energy Market
— By Green Energy Resources

New Tool for Reducing Campus Greenhouse Gas Emissions Unveiled
— By Clean Air - Cool Planet

The USGBC Announces the NaturalTalent Design Competition
— By U.S. Green Building Council

Coalition Urges Senate Energy Committee to Convene Conference on Renewable Energy and Energy Efficiency
— By Sustainable Energy Coalition

WWF Hails 'Giant Step' Forward in Amazon Conservation

UNEP Governing Council to Focus on Environment and MDGs
— By UN Environment Programme

::: ENN Daily Newsletter - Friday, February 18, 2005 :::


Ice Kangaroos, Koalas Melt in Kyoto Protest

SYDNEY — Ice sculptures of kangaroos and koalas melted in front of Sydney's state parliament house on Wednesday as green groups protested at Australia's refusal, along with the United States, to ratify the Kyoto climate pact.

Dream or Nightmare? -- An ENN Commentary

Let's imagine a modern day Rip Van Winkle, Washington Irving's fabled character who fell asleep for twenty years. To what kind of a world would he awaken in 2025, two decades from now?

Mexico Reports 75-Percent Drop in the Number of Monarch Butterflies

MEXICO CITY — The Mexican government said on Tuesday that 75 percent fewer Monarch butterflies have appeared at wintering grounds here, largely blaming conditions in the United States and Canada for the decline.

New Global Network Aims for Tsunami Warning System

WASHINGTON — A global tsunami warning system to get critical information to people in the path of the potentially deadly waves was approved Wednesday as a top priority for the world's climate experts.

In a New Mexico Desert Town, Residents Stake Their Future on Uranium

EUNICE, New Mexico — Like many others in this former boomtown, Mayor James Brown knows more about isotopes, centrifuges and uranium-235 than your average college student.

Defecating Pandas Expand Their Horizons

BEIJING — A study of giant panda poo in China has proved the endangered animals are expanding their horizons, Xinhua news agency said on Wednesday.

Seizing Their Chance, Conservationists Join Forces to Push Bills

SALEM — Senate Democrats and conservationists gathered on the Willamette River's frigid banks Tuesday to announce the "most important" water quality proposal in 30 years, another in a long line of environmental protections they have championed.

Russia's UES Close to Large Kyoto-Linked Deals

MOSCOW — Russian electricity giant Unified Energy System, which accounts for 2 percent of global greenhouse gases, is close to signing 30 Kyoto-linked deals to slash emissions by 20 million tonnes a year, it said on Wednesday.


International Sustainable Agriculture Student Exchange Program
— By Pennsylvania IPM Program

How Good are Things between California Fishermen and Environmentalists? On a Scale of 1 to 10, It's about a 2.1
— By University of North Carolina Wilmington

Trouble Finding Food: Global Warming Displaces Arctic Food Web
— By UM Rosenstiel School of Marine & Atmospheric Science

EPA Making Illegal, Secret Agreements with Pesticide Makers, Threatening Public Health, Lawsuit Charges
— By Natural Resources Defense Council

The Arctic is the Chemical Sink of the Globe, Says WWF

UNEP Head on Kyoto Protocol Entry into Force
— By UN Environment Programme

ENVIRONMENT '05  Conference & Exhibition

Don't Miss it - March 7-9, 2005

Plan Now to Attend

This year topics will include air regulatory updates including an afternoon devoted to NR445; MMSD water quality initiative and project management training. On Monday, March 7, there will be an 8-Hour HazWoper seminar, an Environmental, Health & Safety Primer, a Storm Water Permitting workshop, and new this year, a Train the Environmental Trainer seminar

PO Box 624
Slinger, WI 53086
GRACE: People's Ratification of the Kyoto Global Warming Treaty

The much-discussed Kyoto Protocol took effect this week, on Feb. 16th. In the face of the United States' continuing refusal to ratify the international agreement, a group of progressive activists is launching a drive to gather millions of signatures from U.S. citizens for a "People's Ratification of the Kyoto Global Warming Treaty. Please sign the petition today.

Also, see:


When faced with a grave threat to a livable future for ourselves, our children and future generations, it is our duty as Americans to respond.

To date, some 140 nations have ratified the Kyoto Protocol, which enters into force in February 2005, in order to arrest the intensifying destructiveness of global climate change.

In contrast, the United States, which generates 25 percent of the world's polluting carbon emissions with only 5 percent of its population, refuses to join in this worldwide effort to keep this planet hospitable to civilization.

We recognize the current goals of the Protocol are too low ­ and its timetable too long -- to effectively halt the escalating instability of the global climate.

We also recognize the Kyoto Protocol is the only existing diplomatic framework through which the entire global community can address this unprecedented challenge.

We further recognize that the Constitution of the United States grants us the ultimate authority of government.

Therefore, as citizens of the United States, we hereby ratify the Kyoto Protocol and demand that our elected representatives follow suit.

Additionally, we pledge to support subsequent phases of the Kyoto Protocol to reduce worldwide greenhouse emissions by 70 percent. This global transition to clean energy would address nature's demand for a stable climate even as it generates millions of clean energy jobs.

Finally, we declare, through this act of ratification, our allegiance to the democratic process, our fundamental and mortal relationship with this Earth and our essential solidarity with every other member of the human family.

You have received this email because you signed up for the GRACE Public Fund Action Alert list.

GRACE: EPA's Giveaway to Factory Farms

Take Action!

The Environmental Protection Agency just announced a voluntary
agreement with factory farms, which gives them immunity from penalties
for violating federal clean air rules over the next several years, as
well as for certain past violations, in exchange for participating in an
air emissions' monitoring study. This suspension of enforcement action
is completely unnecessary, as the EPA already has the authority to
require Animal Feeding Operations (AFOs) to monitor their emissions,
provide the agency with data, and comply with federal law. Moreover, the
one-time fees for participating in the study and receiving immunity are
just several thousand dollars per AFO, substantially less than what EPA
can fine an AFO for just one day's worth of violations. Recent studies
have shown that air emissions from AFOs can be quite harmful to human
health, endangering farm workers, children, and nearby residents. Please
urge the EPA to fix this rule, so that it protects public health and
requires corporate accountability; submit sample docket comments here:

Click here to read the consent agreement:
Click here to read an article about the rule in Grist magazine: .

You have received this email because you signed up for the GRACE Public
Fund Action Alert list.

GREENBUZZ for February 21, 2005

Taking Care of Business

Seems to us the news coming out of Japan lately is a perfect example of the no-nonsense business adage to "work with what you've got." Last month brought word that Japanese brewer Sapporo is generating biogas from bread waste. Last week Coca-Cola Japan announced it's powering its bottling plant with methane from fermented coffee and tea residues. What's next? Toshiba running its headquarters' HVAC system on discarded television sets? If so, you'll hear it here first.

Also: Columnist Gil Friend examines the business impact of recent E.U. environmental legislation.

The Latest News on Business and the Environment

DOE Partners with Auto Industry on 12 New Energy-Efficiency Projects
The U.S. Department of Energy is joining forces with major industry players to fund 12 new projects that will increase the energy efficiency of passenger and commercial vehicles while maintaining low emissions.

California Pension Fund Presses Companies to Disclose Climate Risk
The California Public Employees' Retirement System's (CalPERS) Board of Administration has approved a plan to shine light on corporate environmental liabilities, improving transparency, and timely disclosure of environmental impacts.

Coca-Cola Japan Powers Plant with Energy Derived from Coffee and Tea Residues
The company has begun operating a methane fermentation system that produces energy from waste materials such as coffee grounds, used tea leaves, and wastewater sludge.

Survey: Vast Majority of Execs Say CSR Guides Investment Decisions
According to a new study, 85% of executives and investors rank corporate responsibility as a central consideration in investment decisions.

Gas-Powered SUV Cracks 'Greenest Vehicles of 2005' List
Amid excitement over new advanced technology vehicles entering the market and worries about sustained high gas prices, the American Council for an Energy-Efficient Economy has announced this year's "greenest" and "meanest" vehicles, along with the environmental scorings of all model year 2005 cars and passenger trucks.

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Resources and Tools
A Wealth of Hands-On Help

Site provides architects, designers, and builders with practical news and information on green-building products and techniques.

Employee Transportation Coordinator Handbook
Gives an overview of commute options and details how employers can support employees in reducing commutes.

Cleaner Technologies Substitutes Assessment
Evaluate the comparative risk, performance, cost, and resource conservation of alternatives to chemicals currently used by specific industry sectors.

More Tools... | More Web Sites...

Columns and Features
Insight and Inspiration from the Experts

It Began With a Dot: Product Regulation and Future Markets
Gil Friend offers some perspective on both the barriers and the opportunities of the European Union's new environmental regulations -- and how companies that understand the ecosystem drivers behind these new regulations can potentially get out ahead of them.

Wanna write for GreenBiz?Let us know if you'd like to write a guest column or feature reflecting your experiences or opinions in the environmental business world. Send a brief query to | Read our editorial guidelines

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GREENBUZZ for February 14, 2005

Taking Care of Business

The responsible-business movement has not only changed the face of corporate reporting, it has altered the job descriptions of the financial professionals tasked with compiling and verifying those reports. This week we bring you the how-to "Adapting Your Accounting Practices to Triple Bottom Line Reporting" by Certified Management Accountant David Crawford -- a must-read for those seeking to broaden their accounting skills with these new challenges in mind.

Also, talk about "walking the talk": The Global Reporting Initiative last week released its first-ever sustainability report. Find out how the GRI fared according to the 97 key performance indicators it specifies for sustainable development.

The Latest News on Business and the Environment

New Zealand Tags $1.2 Million for Sustainable Tourism
The New Zealand government has introduced a $1.2 million project to help the country's tourism operators tap into the rewards of smart environmental business practice.

Major Grocery Chain Earns Energy Star Rating for Over 100 Stores
Fortune 500 grocery chain Supervalu has earned the U.S. EPA's Energy Star designation more than 100 of its corporate retail grocery stores.

Study: Corporate Values Linked to Financial Success, But CEOs Still Unconvinced
A new study shows that while public companies that report superior financial results also report greater success in linking values to operations, most corporate executives do not see a direct link between values and growth.

GRI Walks the Talk on Sustainability Reporting
The Global Reporting Initiative has published the first-ever sustainability report for its own organization.

Engineering Academy Announces Million-Dollar Sustainability Prize
The National Academy of Engineering has announced a $1 million sustainability prize for a new, practical technology that will prevent arsenic contamination of drinking water.

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Resources and Tools
A Wealth of Hands-On Help

Adapting Your Accounting Practices to Triple Bottom Line Reporting
Certified Management Accountant David Crawford offers background and outlines next steps to help accountants and other financial professionals to meet the challenges of triple bottom line reporting.

Benchmarking Corporate Governance of Chemicals in Products
Help for corporate managers seeking to design safer chemicals programs.

Energy Efficiency Best Practices
The more than 90 best practices detailed here will help users enhance the design, implementation, and evaluation of their own energy efficiency programs.

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Columns and Features
Insight and Inspiration from the Experts

Toward a Sustainable Japan: NEC's 'Ecology through IT'
Japanese communications giant NEC is using information technology to improve productivity while reducing paper consumption and the need to transport people and goods.

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