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Environmental News

Environmental News from the Great Lakes Region

Thursday, February 2, 2017
Is your sustainable supply chain program really as good as you think?
The trend is clear: companies are increasingly engaging their suppliers and investing in transparent networks. But is it enough? Source: GreenBiz, 2/1/17

6 insights for creating a great sustainability video
A veteran producer shares how to tell a compelling story worth sharing. Source: GreenBiz, 2/1/17

IL: Area stores join movement to sell 'ugly' foods, reduce waste
Hy-Vee has partnered with global produce company Robinson Fresh to offer a line of "Misfits," or "ugly" produce, at almost all of its more than 240 stores, according to a news release from Hy-Vee. The items are delivered weekly based on what's available, and are sold on average at a 30 percent discount, the release said. Source: Daily Review Atlas, 1/28/17

Private Capital Investments in Conservation Have Taken Off Since 2013
Banks and fund managers have funneled billions of dollars into investments aimed at delivering measurable environmental benefits as much as financial returns. Source: Pacific Standard, 2/1/17

Why Build Green? Lowered Operational Costs, Increased Staff Productivity and Higher Asset Values
Green building continues to play a growing role in the construction industry, with building industry professionals forecasting that more than 60 percent of their projects will be "green" by 2018. Source: Environmental Leader, 2/2/17

Certification Helps Printing Facilities Cut Operational Expenses
Environmental best practices such as recycling and reducing emissions can also help printing facilities cut their operating expenses, according to the Sustainable Green Printing Partnership (SGP). Source: Environmental Leader, 2/2/17

Tokyo Olympics: Medals to be made from recycled mobile phones donated by the public
Organisers of the 2020 Tokyo Olympics say the medals will be forged from recycled metal from old mobile phones and appliances donated by the general public to give them a sense of direct involvement in the Games. Source: Australian Broadcasting Corp, 2/1/17

MN: Discounts available to switch out solvent-based parts washers
The MPCA has developed a pilot project in partnership with Safety-Kleen that will give a 25% discount to small businesses who switch from a solvent to an aqueous-based parts washer. Source: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 12/14/16

Wednesday, February 1, 2017
NTP supports first study of BPA levels in U.S. factory workers
A new study, supported by the National Toxicology Program (NTP), is the first to look at occupational exposure to bisphenol A (BPA) among manufacturing workers in the United States. Source: Environmental Factor, January 2017

Chemical risk assessment keeps pace with emerging science
Advances in science and technology open the door to new approaches for assessing the risks posed by chemicals in the environment, according to a Jan. 5 report from the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. Source: Environmental Factor, January 2017

Tuesday, January 31, 2017
Report Recommends New Framework for Estimating the Social Cost of Carbon
To estimate the social cost of carbon dioxide for use in regulatory impact analyses, the federal government should use a new framework that would strengthen the scientific basis, provide greater transparency, and improve characterization of the uncertainties of the estimates, says a new report by the National Academies of Sciences, Engineering, and Medicine. The report also identifies a number of near- and longer-term improvements that should be made for calculating the social cost of carbon. Source: National Academies, 1/11/17

Reducing Waste with Closed Loop Supply Chains
Closed loop supply chains can help companies reduce waste and maximize resources, which is why a growing number of businesses are combining traditional supply chains (forward logistics) with reverse logistics, Business2Community reports. Source: Environmental Leader, 1/31/17

HP, Philips help supply chains scrub 434 million tons of CO2
Big corporate buyers are driving a sea change in climate action throughout the world's industrial supply chain, according to a new report released by the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP). Source: GreenBiz, 1/31/17

Worries about food waste appear to vanish when diners know scraps go to compost
Diners waste far less food when they're schooled on the harm their leftovers can inflict on the environment. But if they know the food is going to be composted instead of dumped in a landfill, the educational benefit disappears. Source: Ohio State University, 1/3/17

Monday, January 30, 2017
Cleaning Product Ingredient Safety Website Completed
Safety data on hundreds of chemicals in the U.S. consumer cleaning product supply chain have been collected and are now available through the website for the American Cleaning Institute's (ACI) Cleaning Product Ingredient Safety Initiative (CPISI). Source: American Cleaning Institute, 1/26/17

Five States Are Considering Bills to Legalize the 'Right to Repair' Electronics
Lawmakers in five states have introduced legislation that would enshrine the "Right to Repair" electronics, meaning manufacturers will have to sell replacement parts to independent repair shops and consumers and will also have to make their diagnostic and service manuals public. Source: Motherboard, 1/23/17

Indiana County Makes Changes to E-Waste Recycling Program After Theft, Illegal Dumping
La Porte County, Ind., Solid Waste District is making some changes to its e-waste recycling program following multiple theft and illegal dumping incidents. Starting on January 30, the district's e-waste recycling trailer will only be open during office hours (8 a.m. to 4 p.m. Monday through Friday). Outside of office hours, the trailer will remain locked. Source: Waste 360, 1/30/17

Thursday, January 26, 2017
New Partnership Working to Reduce U.S.Food Waste by 50 Percent
The World Resources Institute and 11 partners announce the launch of Further With Food: Center for Food Loss and Waste Solutions an online hub to exchange information and solutions that can help realize the United States' goal of cutting food waste 50 percent by 2030. In addition to stimulating widespread adoption of proven solutions, Further With Food will help coordinate efforts between businesses, government agencies, investors, non-profits, academics and individuals, and reduce duplication of efforts. Source: World Resources Institute, 1/26/17

Measuring and Reducing Food Loss and Waste
Since the adoption in September 2015 of the United Nations' 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs) to end poverty and hunger, protect the planet, and ensure prosperity for all, food businesses are increasingly engaged in food loss and waste reduction, with impressive achievements.

On the international level, Lipinski et al. (2016) reported on the progress of Champions 12.3--a cross-sectoral coalition of nearly 40 leaders around the world dedicated to achieving SDG Target 12.3, which calls for halving per capita global food waste and reducing food losses along production and supply chains by 2030. They provided examples of waste reduction accomplishments and detailed what more is needed. They highlighted approaches to reducing food loss and waste across the production-to-consumption food system and identified the following for processing and packaging: reengineering manufacturing processes; improving supply chain management; improving packaging to keep food fresher longer, optimize portion size, and gauge safety; and reprocessing or repackaging food that does not meet specifications. Source: Food Technology, January 2017

Turning Trash Into Treasure
To solve the problem of food waste, start thinking differently about the challenges it presents. Source: Food Technology, January 2017

Target Posts Chemical Policy. Will Other Retailers Follow Suit?
Target has published a new chemical strategy and policy that it says will apply across its operations and to every product it sells. The retailer also set a goal to invest up to $5 million in green chemistry by 2022 and challenged the industry to follow its example. Source: Environmental Leader, 1/25/17

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GLRPPR is a member of the Pollution Prevention Resource Exchange, a national network of regional information centers: NEWMOA (Northeast), WRRC (Southeast), GLRPPR (Great Lakes), ZeroWasteNet (Southwest), P2RIC (Plains), Peaks to Prairies (Mountain), WSPPN (Pacific Southwest), PPRC (Northwest).


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