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Environmental News


Environmental News from the Great Lakes Region

Thursday, May 29, 2014
Healthy buildings: why workers are demanding sustainable offices
Companies that ignore the environmental and social impacts of their buildings could risk miserable workers and low productivity. Source: The Guardian, 5/29/14

Revised environmental rules for Minnesota livestock feedlots are now in effect
Revisions and updates to environmental protection rules for livestock feedlots in Minnesota went into effect May 27. Changes include permit requirements for large feedlots, definitions of ownership and permit modifications, and "housekeeping" updates. Source: Minnesota Pollution Control Agency, 5/29/14

EPA Funds University Research on Cleaner Fuel Burning to Improve Air Quality
The U.S. Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) announced new funding for six universities to research cleaner technologies and fuels for cooking, lighting, and heating homes that will help improve air quality and protect the health of Alaska Natives and people across the developing world. Paul Francisco of ISTC's Indoor Climate Research and Training program is an investigators on one of the funded projects," A Global Map of Feasible Residential Solutions, Emphasizing Stoves with Space Heating Uses". Source: U.S. EPA, 5/29/14

Wednesday, May 28, 2014
5 Power and Cooling Myths You Should Stop Believing
Conventional wisdom isn't necessarily true, and this especially applies to power and cooling in the data center. Many popular IT beliefs are in fact myths, and clinging to these notions can impede energy efficiency or cost savings. Source: EdTech, 5/23/14

Can jaw-dropping visuals change the climate conversation?
To rapidly scale public support for innovative climate policies, we need to think creatively and invest quickly in pioneering storytelling methods that enhance public understanding of the current and future impacts of climate change. Source: GreenBiz, 5/28/14

Sustainable Feedstock Contracts
If you are a biodiesel producer, you already believe in sustainability. You already have your RFS pathway and are making the best biodiesel and highest profits possible. Sustainability is part of your DNA, but is it part of your feedstock contracts? Source: Biodiesel Magazine, 5/27/14

New, Fossil-Fuel-Free Process Makes Biodiesel Sustainable
A new fuel-cell concept, developed by an Michigan State University researcher, will allow biodiesel plants to eliminate the creation of hazardous wastes while removing their dependence on fossil fuel from their production process. Source: FutureStructure, 5/21/14

Tuesday, May 27, 2014
As Dairy Farms Grow Bigger, New Concerns About Pollution
Dairy operations in the U.S. are consolidating, with ever-larger numbers of cows concentrated on single farms. In states like Wisconsin, opposition to some large operations is growing after manure spills and improper handling of waste have contaminated waterways and aquifers. Source: Yale Environment 360, 5/27/14

Friday, May 23, 2014
Dell Making Good on 'Legacy of Good' Plan with Carbon-Negative Packaging, Closed-Loop Plastics
On Tuesday, Dell announced new sustainability initiatives that CEO Michael Dell called "the next milestone" in Dell's 2020 Legacy of Good plan. The electronics giant announced it is the first in the IT industry to introduce carbon-negative AirCarbonTM packaging, through a partnership with Newlight Technologies. Dell also is the first to use UL Environment-certified, closed-loop recycled plastics in the manufacturing of computers, in partnership with design manufacturer Wistron GreenTech. The independent, third-party verification of a closed-loop plastics process establishes the first industry standard for closed-loop materials and supports a circular economy for IT. Dell's 2020 Legacy of Good plan includes 21 ambitious sustainability and social goals the company is committed to reaching by 2020. The overarching goal is to ensure that the good that comes from Dell's technology will be ten times what it takes to create and use it. Source: Sustainable Brands, 5/21/14

Thursday, May 22, 2014
New Jersey moves to ban CRT-to-ADC option
In its annual release of OEM collection obligations, the state of New Jersey made a significant announcement regarding CRT management. According to a letter sent out to electronics manufacturers and obtained by E-Scrap News, the state's e-scrap program will not allow OEMs to fulfill 2014 collection goals by sending CRT glass for processing as alternative daily cover (ADC). The CRT-to-ADC debate has sprung onto the e-scrap landscape in the months since Finland-based Kuusakoski Recycling announced a partnership with Illinois' Peoria Disposal Company for a technology that, according to the companies, opens the door to a safe landfill applicatoin of CRT glass. The strategy has caught the attention of many in the industry because it offers a disposal option that is cheaper than moving glass to traditional lead smelters. However, in March, R2 Solutions, which administers the R2 certification, announced it will not allow R2-verified firms to move glass to ADC operations. Source: Resource Recycling, 5/14/14

Rational Design and Development of Safer Chemicals
Molecular Design Research Network (MoDRN) is a recent initiative that will help scientists expand their molecular design "toolbox" by helping anticipate the potential toxicity of commercial chemicals. MoDRN is developing as a collaboration between four universities - Baylor University, George Washington University, University of Washington and Yale University, - with the goals of advancing our understanding of chemical hazards and enabling rational design of safer chemicals in the future. Source: ACS Nexus blog, 5/21/14



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