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Environmental News

Environmental News from the Great Lakes Region

Wednesday, June 13, 2018
SWANA Provides Update on How China's Waste Import Restrictions are Impacting Recycling Programs
The update provides an overview of the effect that the restrictions are having on the export of recyclables from both the U.S. and Canada. Source: Waste360, 6/13/18

Tuesday, June 12, 2018
Sporting Kansas City Teams with Partners to Launch Food Waste Reduction Platform
Sporting Kansas City has teamed with Agspring, Monsanto, Syngenta and The Nature Conservancy to launch Sporting Sustainability, a collaborative platform that unites prominent industry leaders to reduce food waste and achieve additional key sustainability outcomes in the Midwest. Source: Waste360, 5/31/18

Alliance Intends to Improve Water Sustainability in Beef Production
A partnership between the Nature Conservancy, Nestlé Purina and Cargill will launch a three-year program to improve water sustainability across the beef production chain. Source: Drovers, 5/30/18

With recyclable packaging, Purple Carrot says it's rooting for the environment
Vegan meal-kit company Purple Carrot is rolling out 100% recyclable packaging within the next few weeks. According to a company press release, the new corrugated boxes are made from 95% post-consumer material, utilizing a recycled cellulose paper fiber liner and 100% water-filled ice packs that are drain-safe and environmentally disposable. Source: WasteDive, 6/6/18

This Sleek and Stylish Laundromat 'Preserves the Life Cycle of a Garment'
Celsious, a sunlit and stylish coin and credit card laundromat café in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, offers a business model centered on prolonging the life cycle of garments through its speedy laundry equipment and sustainable, zero-waste policies, as well as care practices such as pre-treating stains, washing at lower temperatures and apropos hang-drying. Celsious' modern take on the coin laundromat model is pivotal for conscientious consumers, and for the industry itself. Source: WWD, 6/1/18

A new network of high-res cameras is monitoring Pittsburgh's air pollution in real time
Researchers hope they'll help capture "fugitive emissions" of toxics to help health officials crack down on some of the region's biggest polluters. Source: Environmental Health News, 6/5/18

For every action: how cities are using new tools to drive climate action
With every country in the world committed to the Paris Agreement (including commitments from a large portion of the United States even though the White House has announced its intention to withdraw), cities are in the driver's seat in leading the charge against climate change. Source: GreenBiz, 6/4/18

Friday, June 8, 2018
Underreporting of toxic waste at hog farms prompts inquiry
Testing of 55 North Carolina lagoons showed large discrepancies in levels of key pollutants compared to what was self-reported. Source: The Guardian, 6/6/18

5 Garnier Products Clean Up Sustainability, Nab Cradle-to-Cradle Certification
L'Oreal USA's Garnier brand is the first mass market skin care brand to receive Cradle to Cradle Certified Silver recognition. The five products in the Garnier SkinActive line earned the certification based on an evaluation of material health, material reutilization, renewable energy and carbon management, water stewardship, and social fairness practices. Source: Environmental Leader, 6/6/18

Industry Experts Weigh In on How Technology Can Help Reduce Food Waste
Technology can be used to understand waste volumes and problem areas. Source: Waste360, 6/6/18

5 ways for businesses to cut down on their plastic waste
GreenBiz spoke to some of the United Kingdom's leading experts on plastics, waste and resource efficiency, to gather some advice for firms battling to win the war on plastic waste. Source: GreenBiz, 6/5/18

Great Lakes Commission releases ErieStat to support Lake Erie phosphorus reduction efforts
The Great Lakes Commission (GLC) has announced the launch of ErieStat, a website that tracks progress toward the binational shared goal of reducing phosphorus in Lake Erie by 40 percent, and reports how much of the nutrient is entering the lake from select rivers. Source: Great Lakes Commission, 6/7/18

North Face is cutting waste by selling refurbished old coats
To try to create more of a circular economy in the fashion industry, the outdoor gear company is launching a new line called Renewed, made up of old garments cleaned up so well that they're like new. Source: Fast Company, 6/6/18

Schools lead the way to zero-energy buildings, and use them for student learning
Finding "vampires," angling solar panels, and tracking cafeteria waste all become lessons in net zero energy school buildings. Source: Hechinger Report, May 2018

Dropping the ball: how the sports industry affects biodiversity
Giulia Carbone is deputy director of the Global Business and Biodiversity Programme at the International Union for Conservation of Nature or IUCN. Here, Giulia delves into what is being done to limit the sports industry's impacts on biodiversity loss. Source: GreenBiz, 6/1/18

Wednesday, June 6, 2018
Hundreds of Golf Courses Tee Up to Help Monarch Butterflies
Audubon International and Environmental Defense Fund (EDF) recently partnered to launch Monarchs in the Rough, a program to assist golf courses in the United States, Canada and Mexico in creating habitat for monarch butterflies and other pollinators in out-of-play areas. Source: EDF. 5/31/18

Your Recycling Gets Recycled, Right? Maybe, or Maybe Not
Plastics and papers from dozens of American cities and towns are being dumped in landfills after China stopped recycling most "foreign garbage." Source: New York Times, 5/29/18

How Michelin is finding a second life for tires
It's beginning to integrate circular economy principles into its core manufacturing processes. Source: GreenBiz, 5/29/18

Bio-based nylon focus of Aquafil initiative
Aquafil, an Italian producer of polyamide in Italy, is spearheading a new initiative aimed at increasing the amount of sustainable fibres, with an early goal being the industrial production of bio-based nylon. Apparel brands H&M and Vaude are also part of the project, which sees Aquafil collaborating with bioengineering business Genomatica, to explore options for using renewable feedstock and bio-based technologies. Source: Apparel Insider, May 2018

Sports Stadiums Help Lead the Way Toward Greener Architecture
Sports arenas and stadiums have a far smaller carbon footprint than many factories, shopping malls and office buildings. While they host thousands of people on game days and for big events like concerts, in general they are used intermittently and for short bursts.But in recent years, they have become showcases for green design, even as critics say leagues are wrapping themselves in eco-friendly banners to help market their sports. Still, team owners and building operators have learned that environmentally friendly arenas and stadiums are cheaper to operate, and nothing talks louder than money. Source: New York Times, 5/24/18

Florida brewery unveils six-pack rings that spare sea turtles, not snare them
Saltwater Brewery, based in Delray Beach, is working with the startup E6PR (short for Eco Six Pack Rings) on a "sustainable way of handling cans." The project is a collaborative effort between New York ad agency We Believers, Mexican biodegradable supplier Entelequia, and private investors from the beverage packing industry. Source: CBS News, 5/24/18

E.U. Proposes Ban on Some Plastic Items to Reduce Marine Pollution
The European Commission on Monday proposed an ambitious set of measures to clean up Europe's beaches and rid its seas and waterways of disposable plastics, and urged the European Union to lead the way in reducing marine litter worldwide. Source: New York Times, 5/28/18

'Plastic Free Trust Mark' helps customers dodge plastic packaging
New labeling will assist shoppers in buying food and drinks that aren't packaged in plastic. Campaign group A Plastic Planet is behind what's called the Plastic Free Trust Mark, adopted thus far by some supermarket chains and a tea company. The campaigners are hoping that the labeling will inspire more retailers to jump on the plastic-free bandwagon. Source: Inhabitat, 5/28/18

Corporate Renewables Sourcing Is Now A 'Mainstream Pillar Of Business Strategy'
Companies in 75 countries actively sourced 465 TWh of renewable energy in 2017, representing an amount close to the overall electricity demand of France, according to a new report from the International Renewable Energy Agency (IRENA). Source: North American Wind Power, 5/25/18

Tuesday, May 29, 2018
After Flint, Michigan Pushes Toughest Lead Water Rules in the Country
Four years after the start of the Flint water crisis, Michigan state regulators are on the verge of approving some of the strictest rules in the country to reduce the risk of water-based lead poisoning. But local governments warn that the rules are needlessly expensive, likely unconstitutional and won't necessarily improve public health. Source: Governing, 5/29/18

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