Great Lakes Regional Pollution Prevention Roundtable
Promoting Pollution Prevention Through Information Exchange

Environmental News

Environmental News from the Great Lakes Region

Tuesday, March 24, 2015
How packaging plays in the circular economy
Packaging reuse could save the industry some $11.4 billion that's now represented in discarded material. But it will take some rethinking. Source: GreenBiz, 3/24/15

How VWR has built a successful employee engagement program
The pharmaceutical supplier finds out what works to engage employees in sustainability efforts. Source: GreenBiz, 3/23/15

IBM, Honeywell, CH2M Hill join White House on emissions cuts
The notion of confronting environmental risks embedded in complex global supply chains got a big endorsement last week; President Barack Obama made a pledge that the federal government will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 40 percent within a decade, simultaneously wresting related pledges from 14 major federal suppliers. Source: GreenBiz, 3/24/15

4 reasons why the Supreme Court's mercury case is worth watching
This week, the Supreme Court will hear argument in Michigan v. EPA, an important environmental case challenging the EPA's Mercury and Air Toxics Standards. These vital regulations address the risks associated with emissions of hazardous air pollutants like mercury and arsenic from coal- and oil-fired power plants. Source: Grist, 3/23/15

Panasonic joins quest for greener cell towers
One tradeoff of the world's increasingly mobile mindset is the energy that cellular communications towers and wireless hotspots suck up to support all those transient connections. The dilemma is acute both in emerging markets, where diesel fuel often must be trucked to remote sites to keep them running, and in established economies where energy costs are spiraling out of control. A new solution from Panasonic Eco Solutions and technology partner PowerOasis could have appeal in both scenarios. The technology, called Green Tower, combines lithium-ion batteries with solar modules and management software to support sites with loads of 50 watts to 3 kilowatts. It can be used in both off-grid and on-grid configurations. The intent is to help telecommunications carriers save 10 percent to 20 percent on their energy infrastructure costs annually, according to Panasonic executives. Source:, 3/24/15

Wednesday, March 18, 2015
E-Waste Event Sponsored by GSA NCR Personal Property Management Division
GSA Personal Property Management Division National Capital Region is hosting an E-Waste Event on April 22, 2015. The purpose of this event is to give local area federal agencies an opportunity to dispose of their unneeded, inoperable electronic assets. This disposal event will be free of charge to those who participate and will ensure assets are disposed of in an environmentally friendly fashion. We will partner with a disposal vendor who has agreed to pay the GSA Surplus Sales program for accumulations of federal electronic assets. Participants will receive certification that their property was disposed of in accordance with EPA regulations. Source: GSA, 3/18/15

Monday, March 16, 2015
Minneapolis, food-sellers prep for a ban on foam food containers
Restaurants, hotels and other businesses that sell takeout food in Minneapolis have six weeks to go before they'll no longer be able to package up your food in foam containers -- or in any container that isn't recyclable, reusable or compostable. Source: Minneapolis Star-Tribune, 3/10/15

Friday, March 13, 2015
Public Libraries, U. Wisconsin-Madison Team Up on Climate Change MOOC
The University of Wisconsin--Madison (UWM) is offering a new four-week massive open online course (MOOC) on Changing Weather and Climate in the Great Lakes Region. What's different about this endeavor, besides the strong local interest angle, is that the university, in coordination with Wisconsin Library Services (WiLS), is partnering with 21 public libraries across the state. The collaborative venture will share scientific information about global warming via video, readings, an online discussion board, and quizzes, as well as in-person discussions at the libraries with scientists, staff, and graduate students from UWM, the National Weather Service, and the University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee. Source: Library Journal, 3/11/15

Thursday, March 12, 2015
Water vs. climate: How to prioritize sustainability risk
When making a decision on where to invest environmental bucks, where should businesses concentrate their efforts -- on climate change or on water? Source: GreenBiz, 3/12/15

Greening from the ground up at Hilton
Nine months after taking over as general manager of the Hilton Chicago/Oak Brook Hills Resort & Conference Center, Stefan Mühle is just part of the way toward reaching his goal of transforming the property into a uniquely green destination with a "boutique heart and soul." Source: GreenBiz, 3/12/15

Other Environmental News

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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