tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:/xml/green%20business1 green business news from mongabay.com 2015-06-23T03:12:19Z tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14707 2015-04-29T15:30:00Z 2015-06-23T03:12:19Z Help on the way for 'green investment' in Indonesia <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="//lh5.googleusercontent.com/-dpwny__gEDo/VUD5WEH2QWI/AAAAAAAABgk/yGoxfoRMmG0/w150-h100-no/Tinjau-Pelaksanaan-Sumba-Iconic-Island-070415-hma-2-1.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Indonesian government plans to expand the list of incentives for "green investment," cabinet members said at a summit in Jakarta on Monday. On the table are tax breaks for imports of equipment that reduces pollution; and longer permits and favorable interest rates for companies with environmentally friendly policies. Philip Jacobson tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/14305 2015-01-26T19:01:00Z 2015-01-26T20:55:17Z Accounting for natural capital on financial exchanges <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://mongabay.s3.amazonaws.com/sabah/150/sabah_aerial_1308.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last month, Norway's stock exchange, the Oslo Børs, introduced a way for investors to use their money to promote sustainability. A new list by the stock exchange highlights green bonds, financial products issued by companies to raise capital for environmentally friendly projects. Notably, the list requires that issuing companies obtain and publicize outside opinions on the projects' environmental features. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/12712 2014-01-31T16:28:00Z 2014-01-31T16:34:30Z L'Oreal pledges to wipe out forest destruction from its products by 2020 French cosmetics giant, L'Oreal, has pledged to stop using palm oil linked to deforestation for its products by 2020. Palm oil, which is found in both cosmetics and many food items, has been linked to widespread deforestation in places like Indonesia and Malaysia, decimating biodiversity and contributing to global warming. The crop, which is both high-yield and lucrative, is now becoming increasingly popular in Africa and Latin America as well. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/11315 2013-04-29T15:39:00Z 2015-02-09T22:52:37Z What if companies actually had to compensate society for environmental destruction? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/kenya/150/kenya_0414.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The environment is a public good. We all share and depend on clean water, a stable atmosphere, and abundant biodiversity for survival, not to mention health and societal well-being. But under our current global economy, industries can often destroy and pollute the environment&#8212;degrading public health and communities&#8212;without paying adequate compensation to the public good. Economists call this process "externalizing costs," i.e. the cost of environmental degradation in many cases is borne by society, instead of the companies that cause it. A new report from TEEB (The Economics of Ecosystems and Biodiversity), conducted by Trucost, highlights the scale of the problem: unpriced natural capital (i.e. that which is not taken into account by the global market) was worth $7.3 trillion in 2009, equal to 13 percent of that year's global economic output. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/10663 2013-01-10T16:23:00Z 2015-02-09T22:21:27Z Paradigm shift needed to avert global environmental collapse, according to author of new book The Blueprint: Averting Global Collapse <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://s3.amazonaws.com/mongabay-images/13/0110.shutterstock_102265663.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Global strategist, trained educator, and international lecturer Daniel Rirdan set out to create a plan addressing the future of our planet. His book The Blueprint: Averting Global Collapse, published this year, does just that. "It has been a sixty hour a week routine," Rirdan told mongabay.com in a recent interview. "Basically, I would wake up with the burden of the world on my shoulders and go to sleep with it. It went on like this for eighteen months." It becomes apparent when reading The Blueprint that it was indeed a monumental undertaking. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9842 2012-07-16T13:02:00Z 2012-07-16T13:31:41Z Soccer lights up kids' lives: new technology produces cheap, portable power <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/SOCCKET_light.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Recently, Jessica O. Matthews and Julia Silverman, both Harvard graduates, were awarded Harvard Foundation’s Scientists of the Year award for their invention of a soccer ball that converts kinetic energy to electricity. The two women, who were both social science majors, came up with the idea when they were taking an engineering class for non-majors and were required to create a project that would address a social problem. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/9280 2012-03-19T13:51:00Z 2012-03-19T14:14:47Z Oil exploration approved in Africa's oldest park, Virunga National Park Permits for controversial oil exploration in Virunga National Park have been released after request by NGO Global Witness. Oil company, SOCO International, has confirmed it has received two permits to undertake preliminary exploration, including seismic tests, in the UNESCO World Heritage Site. Located in the Democratic Republic of Congo (DRC), Virunga is famous for its population of the Critically Endangered mountain gorillas (Gorilla beringei beringei). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/8273 2011-08-11T07:10:00Z 2011-08-12T14:01:49Z Taking corporate sustainability seriously means changing business culture <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/co06-1366.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As more and more people demand companies to become sustainable and environmentally conscious, many corporations are at a loss of how to begin making the changes necessary. If they attempt to make changes&#8212;but fall short or focus poorly&#8212;they risk their actions being labeled as 'greenwash'. In addition, if they implement smart changes and self-regulations, but their employees don't buy-in to the process, all their investments will be for nothing. This is where Accountability Now, a young, fresh social responsibility agency, comes in. Clare Raybould, director of Accountability Now, believes companies&#8212;large and small&#8212;have the potential to change the world for the better, but they simply need a guiding hand to change not just the way a company works, but its culture. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7925 2011-05-25T19:56:00Z 2011-05-25T19:58:18Z Shipping firm pledges to disconnect itself from rainforest destruction <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/pan02-1625.150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Danish shipping giant Maersk pledged this week to stop purchasing containers with floors made from uncertified tropical hardwood, reports Deutsche Welle press. In an effort to reduce illegal logging and combat climate change, the company will be turning to recycled plastic, bamboo, and tropical wood certified by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) for its flooring. The Copenhagen-based firm is the first cargo company to transition to 'green containers' as part of a sustainable business strategy. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7902 2011-05-23T00:17:00Z 2015-01-28T23:31:24Z Nobel laureates: 'we are transgressing planetary boundaries that have kept civilization safe for the past 10,000 years' Last week the 3rd Nobel Laureates Symposium on Global Sustainability concluded with participants—including 17 past Nobel Prize winners and 40 other experts—crafting and signing the Stockholm Memorandum. The document calls for emergency actions to tackle human pressures on the Earth's environment while ensuring a more equitable and just world. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7663 2011-03-30T17:44:00Z 2011-09-06T13:42:40Z Sustainability takes only cents Real economic global results from decoupling economic growth from unsustainable natural resource management and inefficient industrial processes are the central themes of <i>Cents and Sustainability</i>. Implementing wealth creation strategies at the local, national, and international level is the primary economic theme, or modus operandi, of the 21st Century, as opposed to 20th Century wealth appropriation strategies. This begets the question do concrete auditable examples of wealth creation while sustainably managing natural resources at the national level exist? Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7659 2011-03-29T22:38:00Z 2011-03-29T22:41:11Z Clean energy investments rise 630% in 7 years According to a report by the US Pew Environment Group global clean energy investments, which do not include nuclear power, jumped 630% since 2004. The report detailing 2010 clean energy investments found that China remains the global leader in clean energy, while the US fell from 2nd to 3rd. This is the second year in a row that the US fell: in 2009 it lost first place to China. In all $243 billion were invested in clean energy in 2010. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7654 2011-03-28T16:53:00Z 2011-09-06T13:40:42Z Environmental sustainability—the new economic bottom line That’s the message in <i>Accounting for Sustainability: Practical Insights</i>. The book represents the compilation of a five-year project—nicknamed “A4S”—sponsored by Prince Charles, Prince of Wales, that examined the feasibility of factoring industries’ impact on the environment into their economic spread sheets. Using case studies and interviews with leaders at major accounting firms, Accounting For Sustainability documents the bond between capitalism and environmental capital. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7632 2011-03-24T17:50:00Z 2011-03-24T17:51:41Z New organization seeks to make biofuels sustainable, but is it possible? Not too long ago policy-makers, scientists, and environmentalists saw biofuels as a significant tool to provide sustainable energy to the world. However, as it became clear that biofuels were not only connected to deforestation, pollution, and greenhouse gas emissions (sometimes exceeding fossil fuels), but also competed with the global food supply and water sources, biofuels no longer seemed like a silver bullet, but a new problem facing the environment and the poor. Still, biofuels have persisted not so much due to perceived environmental benefits, but to entrenched interests by the big agricultural industry, lobbyists, and governments. However, the Roundtable on Sustainable Biofuels (RSB) hopes to begin certifying environmentally friendly biofuels that don't compete with food production or water sources. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/7349 2011-01-26T22:39:00Z 2011-01-26T23:00:04Z Is Obama's clean energy revolution possible? Last night US President Barack Obama called for a massive green energy make-over of the world's largest economy. Describing the challenge as 'this generation's Sputnik moment' the US president set a goal of producing 80 percent of America's energy by clean sources by 2035. While this may sound improbable, two recent analyses back the president up, arguing that a global clean energy revolution is entirely possible within a few decades using contemporary technology and without breaking the bank. "Based on our findings, there are no technological or economic barriers to converting the entire world to clean, renewable energy sources," Mark Z. Jacobson, a professor of civil and environmental engineering at Stanford said in a press release. "It is a question of whether we have the societal and political will." Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6992 2010-11-03T18:24:00Z 2010-11-03T18:29:43Z US elects barrage of climate change deniers, threatening support for green energy The US midterm election, which won Republicans the House but safeguarded the Senate for Democrats, has brought in a number of self-proclaimed climate change deniers, ending any likelihood that an energy bill will be passed over the next two years and essentially stumbling the White House's strategy on climate change. Newly elected Republican Senators Rand Paul of Kentucky and Marc Rubio of Florida, both members of the nascent Tea Party, have stated they do not believe in climate change despite that scientists overwhelming agree the Earth is warming due to human impacts. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6894 2010-10-11T18:37:00Z 2015-01-26T21:15:40Z Can 'boutique capitalism' help protect the Amazon? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/ecostasy.plainer.150.jpg " align="left"/></td></tr></table>Most companies talk green, but few—almost none in fact—actually walk the walk. Sustainable design company, Ecostasy, not only walks the walk, but actually seeks out among the most challenging places to work: the imperiled Brazilian Amazon. Specializing in hand-crafted products by indigenous groups—such as jewelry, pots, and furniture—Ecostasy seeks to balance smart economics, environmental protection, and community development. Make no mistake, however, Ecostasy is not a non-profit, but a rare and refreshing example of a company truly dedicated to changing the world for the better. "In my mind, a virtuous company does not compromise ethical principles for economic interests. For me, being ethical is comprised of conducting oneself with honesty and responsibility to one’s constituencies (customers, employees, suppliers), society and the environment," Katherine Ponte, founder of Ecostasy, told mongabay.com in an interview. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6485 2010-07-12T23:44:00Z 2015-01-23T17:42:26Z Paying for nature: putting a price on 'ecosystem services' Ever since humans entered the stage, nature has been providing us with a wide-variety of essential and 'free' services: food production, pollination, soil health, water filtration, and carbon sequestration to name a few. Experts have come to call these 'ecosystem services'. Such services, although vital for an inhabitable planet, have largely gone undervalued in the industrial age, at least officially. Yet as environmental crises pile one on another across the world, a growing number of scientists, economists, environmentalists, and policy-makers are beginning to consider putting a monetary value on 'ecosystem services'. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6100 2010-05-19T18:46:00Z 2010-05-19T20:21:52Z Big compromise reached on Canada's Boreal by environmental groups and forestry industry <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/boreal.scenery.thumb.jpg " align="left"/></td></tr></table>In what is being heralded as the 'world's largest conservation agreement' 20 Canadian forestry companies and nine environmental organizations have announced an agreement covering 72 million hectares of the Canadian boreal forest (an area bigger than France). Reaching a major compromise, the agreement essentially ends a long battle between several environmental groups and the companies signing on, all members of the Forest Products Association of Canada (FPAC). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/6089 2010-05-17T15:14:00Z 2010-05-17T15:35:21Z Nestle caves to activist pressure on palm oil <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g94/troufs/borneo_5424a-2.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>After a two month campaign against Nestle for its use of palm oil linked to rainforest destruction spearheaded by Greenpeace, the food giant has given in to activists' demands. The Swiss-based company announced today in Malaysia that it will partner with the Forest Trust, an international non-profit organization, to rid its supply chain of any sources involved in the destruction of rainforests. "Nestle’s actions will focus on the systematic identification and exclusion of companies owning or managing high risk plantations or farms linked to deforestation," a press release from the company reads, adding that "Nestle wants to ensure that its products have no deforestation footprint." Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5741 2010-03-01T01:09:00Z 2015-01-21T00:16:58Z How that cork in your wine bottle helps forests and biodiversity, an interview with Patrick Spencer <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/j/DSC_0072.thumb.JPG " align="left"/></td></tr></table>Next time you’re in the supermarket looking to buy a nice bottle of wine: think cork. Although it’s not widely known, the cork industry is helping to sustain one of the world’s most biodiverse forests, including a number of endangered species such as the Iberian lynx and the Barbary deer. Spreading across 6.6 million acres in southern Europe (France, Spain, Portugal, and Italy) and northern Africa (Algeria, Morocco, and Tunisia) oak cork trees <i>Quercus suber</i> are actually preserved and protected by the industry. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5690 2010-02-19T19:08:00Z 2010-02-19T19:12:34Z Profit of biggest companies would be cut by a third if forced to pay for environmental damage from operations Profits of the world's 3,000 largest companies would be cut by $2.2 trillion per year if they were forced to pay for environmental damage from their operations, according to an upcoming U.N. report detailed by The Guardian</a>. The study, conducted by Trucost, a consultancy, and scheduled to be released this summer, estimates that pollution and degradation of natural resources by the world's 3,000 largest companies amount to six to seven percent of total revenue, or roughly one-third of profits. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5676 2010-02-17T18:01:00Z 2010-02-17T18:08:35Z Consumers fail at identifying green companies An article today in <i>New Scientist</i> shows that American consumers have a difficult time correctly identifying green companies, often confusing 'greenwashing' for true green credentials or not bestowing enough credit where credit is truly due. By combining data from Earthsense, which polled 30,000 Americans about on their views of 'green' companies, and Trucost which assesses companies global environmental impact, <i>New Scientist</i> was able to discover just how confused American consumers are when it comes to identifying 'green'. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5603 2010-02-02T22:26:00Z 2010-02-02T23:35:26Z Could special bonds fund the green revolution and stabilize the climate? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://www.mongabay.com/thumbnails/peru/aerial-rainforest/Flight_1022_1474.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>There is no question that governments around the world are moving slowly and sluggishly to combat climate change, especially when placed against the measures recommended by climate scientists. Only a handful of nations have actually cut overall greenhouse gas emissions, and the past couple decades have seen emissions rise rapidly worldwide as nations like India and China industrialize while Brazil and Indonesia continue massive deforestation. Global temperatures are rising in concert (though with natural fluctuations): the past decade is the warmest on record. After the failure of Copenhagen this past December to produce an ambitious and binding treaty, many are wondering if the world will ever address the threat of climate change or if future generations are set to live in a world far different—and more volatile—than the one we currently enjoy. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5577 2010-02-01T04:46:00Z 2010-02-01T04:54:46Z China leaves US (and Europe) in the dust on renewable energy This year China has become the world's largest manufacturer of solar panels and wind turbines, doubling its wind capacity since 2005. The economically booming nation—and the world's most populous—has also invested heavily in nuclear power and the world's most efficient coal plants, according to the <a href="http://www.nytimes.com/2010/01/31/business/energy-environment/31renew.html?em">New York Times</a>. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5125 2009-11-15T20:11:00Z 2009-11-15T20:32:36Z New rating systems seeks to promote sustainable landscapes from shopping malls to city parks The Sustainable Sites Initiative has developed the United States' first rating system for the design, construction, and on-going maintenance of a wide-variety of landscapes, both with and without buildings, including shopping malls, subdivisions, university campuses, corporate buildings, transportation centers, parks and other recreation areas, and single-family homes. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5080 2009-11-03T21:18:00Z 2009-11-04T00:21:24Z Disney commits $4 million to rainforest conservation in the Amazon, Congo The Walt Disney Company will invest $7 million in forest conservation projects in the U.S., the Congo Basin, and the Amazon in an effort to reduce its greenhouse gas emissions. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5031 2009-10-15T17:07:00Z 2009-10-15T18:15:46Z Business and conservation groups team up to conserve and better manage US's southern forests A new project entitled Carbon Canopy brings together multiple stakeholders—from big business to conservation organizations to private landowners—in order to protect and better manage the United State's southern forests. The program intends to employ the emerging US forest carbon market to pay private forest owners for conservation and restoration efforts while making certain that all forest-use practices subscribes to the standards of the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5022 2009-10-07T19:17:00Z 2009-10-07T19:42:47Z Brazilian beef giants agree to moratorium on Amazon deforestation Four of the world's largest cattle producers and traders have agreed to a moratorium on buying cattle from newly deforested areas in the Amazon rainforest, reports Greenpeace. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/5013 2009-09-24T21:57:00Z 2015-01-20T23:23:02Z Could agroforestry solve the biodiversity crisis and address poverty?, an interview with Shonil Bhagwat <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://i54.photobucket.com/albums/g94/troufs/Photo_Shonil_Bhagwat.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>With the world facing a variety of crises: climate change, food shortages, extreme poverty, and biodiversity loss, researchers are looking at ways to address more than one issue at once by revolutionizing sectors of society. One of the ideas is a transformation of agricultural practices from intensive chemical-dependent crops to mixing agriculture and forest, while relying on organic methods. The latter is known as agroforestry or land sharing—balancing the crop yields with biodiversity. Shonil Bhagwat, Director of MSc in Biodiversity, Conservation and Management at the School of Geography and the Environment, Oxford, believes this philosophy could help the world tackle some of its biggest problems. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4992 2009-09-21T03:04:00Z 2009-09-21T03:21:16Z Fashion labels drop APP after party highlights the plight of Indonesian forests The fashion world has been rocked: not by the newest designer or the most shocking outfit, but by the continuing destruction of forests in Indonesia. On September 15th, the Rainforest Action Network (RAN) helped open New York City's styling Fashion Week with a party to encourage fashion designers to take a closer look at the paper bags they give customers. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4951 2009-09-08T20:50:00Z 2013-11-17T00:20:04Z Concerns over deforestation may drive new approach to cattle ranching in the Amazon <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/brazil/150/brazil_0488.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>While you're browsing the mall for running shoes, the Amazon rainforest is probably the farthest thing from your mind. Perhaps it shouldn't be. The globalization of commodity supply chains has created links between consumer products and distant ecosystems like the Amazon. Shoes sold in downtown Manhattan may have been assembled in Vietnam using leather supplied from a Brazilian processor that subcontracted to a rancher in the Amazon. But while demand for these products is currently driving environmental degradation, this connection may also hold the key to slowing the destruction of Earth's largest rainforest. Rhett Butler -13.878246 -53.033951 tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4906 2009-08-27T15:56:00Z 2009-08-27T16:05:20Z Retailers Costco and Amazon.com flunk sustainable paper use, WalMart and Target fare little better Every year forests are destroyed for the production of paper: habitat is lost, greenhouse gases are released, species are impacted, and fresh water sources damaged. Some companies have begun to move towards more sustainable paper production, seeking paper sources stamped by the Forest Stewardship Council (FSC) and increasing the use of recycled paper, however other companies in the industry have yet to change their way. The 3rd annual report card conducted by Dogwood Alliance and Forest Ethics focuses both on the companies who continue to make progress toward sustainable paper production—and those who don't. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4889 2009-08-23T20:33:00Z 2015-01-19T00:17:52Z Little hydroelectric dams become all the rage, but do they harm the environment? Looking for a way to create energy that doesn’t contribute to climate change and avoid the usual opposition that comes with building large hydroelectric dams, many energy companies are now pursuing constructing small hydroelectric dams in the wilderness, reports the <i><a href="http://online.wsj.com/article/SB125080811184347787.html">Wall Street Journal</a></i>. Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4757 2009-07-22T20:36:00Z 2009-07-22T21:43:07Z Nike implements policy to avoid leather produced via Amazon deforestation Nike is working with Greenpeace to ensure its products don't contribute to destruction of the Amazon rainforest, according to statements from the shoe giant and the environmental activist group. The partnership comes after Greenpeace report accused Nike of using leather derived from cattle raised on illegal deforested Amazon land. The report, "Slaughtering the Amazon", also linked other shoemakers to rainforest destruction, including Adidas, Reebok and Timberland. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4352 2009-03-04T20:59:00Z 2009-03-17T16:29:37Z Clean energy investment moving too slowly to avoid irreversible climate change Stalled clean energy investment due to the current recession makes severe climate change more likely, according to a new report by analysts with New Energy Finance (NEF). Jeremy Hance tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/4270 2009-02-05T23:12:00Z 2009-02-06T16:43:07Z New model uses carbon credits, sustainable palm oil to save Indonesia's rainforests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/malaysia/150/borneo_2804.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The World Resources Institute (WRI) has launched an innovative avoided deforestation model that aims to deter conversion of Indonesian rainforest for oil palm plantations. The project, dubbed "POTICO" (Palm Oil, TImber, Carbon Offsets), integrates sustainable palm oil, FSC-certified timber, and carbon offsets in order to "divert new oil palm plantations onto degraded lands and bring the forests that were slated for conversion into certified sustainable forestry". Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3564 2008-12-18T20:44:00Z 2009-01-28T01:52:36Z Obama pick supports 'Green Jobs' initiative to rebuild economy President-elect Barack Obama's choice of California congresswoman Hilda Solis to head the Labor Department is a boost to the effort to launch a national "Green Jobs" initiative reports <i>The Wall Street Journal</i>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/37 2008-12-04T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:06:14Z Salvage logging offers hope for forests, communities devastated by industrial logging <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/08/1204tim_blog150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>As currently practiced, logging is responsible for large-scale destruction of tropical forests. Logging roads cut deep into pristine rainforests, opening up once remote areas to colonization, subsistence and industrial agriculture, wildlife exploitation, and other forms of development. Timber extraction thins the canopy, damages undergrowth, and tears up soils, reducing biodiversity and leaving forests more vulnerable to fire. Even selective logging is damaging. Nevertheless demand for wood products continues to grow. China is expected to import more than 100 million cubic meters of industrial roundwood by 2010, much of which will go into finished products shipped off to Europe and the United States. As much as 60 percent of this is illicitly sourced. Meanwhile in Brazil domestic hunger for timber is fueling widespread illegal logging of the Amazon rainforest. Armed standoffs between environmental police and people employed by unlicensed operators are increasingly common. Tropical Salvage, a Portland, Oregon-based producer of wood products, is avoiding these issues altogether by taking a different approach to meet demand for products made from high-quality tropical hardwoods. The company salvages wood discarded from building sites, unearthed from mudslides and volcanic sites, and dredged from rivers in Indonesia and turns it into premium wood products. In the process, Tropical Salvage is putting formers loggers to work and supporting a conservation, education and reforestation project on Java. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/39 2008-12-02T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:06:15Z HSBC to cut lending to questionable oil palm and logging companies HSBC will cut lending to oil palm developers and logging companies in Malaysia and Indonesia due to environmental concerns, reports Reuters. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3367 2008-10-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:29Z Coca-Cola announces water conservation goal Coca-Cola Company has pledged to a 20 percent improvement in water efficiency over 2004 levels in its worldwide operations by 2012, saving some 50 billion liters of fresh water over projected use that year, reports WWF, which negotiated the agreement. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3386 2008-10-26T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:33Z Shell, HSBC put $665,000 toward Borneo rainforest conservation project Brunei Shell Petroleum (Shell Oil) and HSBC have donated 500,000 Brunei dollars ($333,000) each to conserve forests on the island of Borneo, reports the Borneo Bulletin. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3393 2008-10-22T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:34Z Green New Deal will spark global economy, create jobs A "Global Green New Deal" that focuses the world economy "towards investments in clean technologies and 'natural' infrastructure such as forests and soils is the best bet for real growth, combating climate change and triggering an employment boom," according to a new initiative led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3403 2008-10-20T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:36Z Challenges of starting a green business While green design offers the potential to greatly improve the sustainability of new goods and services without sacrificing performance, developing and bringing such products to market is a challenge, said a panel of innovators from companies using nature as inspiration for new technologies. Speaking at the 2008 Bioneers conference in San Rafael, California, Stephen Dewar of WhalePower, Charles Hamilton of Novomer, and Jay Harman of PAX Scientific told biomimicry expert Jane Benyus that radically new approaches to solving design and engineering problems is often met with skepticism from the existing market. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3404 2008-10-20T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:36Z Company that turns CO2 into eco-friendly plastic gets new CEO Novomer, a firm developing biodegradable plastics using carbon dioxide instead of petroleum as a feedstock, today announced the appointment of Jim Mahoney as its new chief executive officer and the relocation of company headquarters from Ithaca, N.Y. to Boston, Mass. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3405 2008-10-20T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:36Z Financial crisis could pave way for greener economy inspired by nature Biomimicry &#8212; the use of nature to inspire design &#8212; could serve as a model for a greener economy that rises out of the ashes of the financial crisis, said experts meeting at a sustainability conference in the San Francisco Bay Area. Speaking at the three-day Bioneers conference in San Rafael, Janine Benyus, a leading voice in the emerging field of biomimicry, said that nature offers lessons that can be applied to build better and more sustainable products and services as well as economic models. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3311 2008-09-16T14:30:00Z 2014-12-02T21:35:51Z Group takes 'venture capital' approach to conservation <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/08/0917charlie150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>An innovative group is using a venture capital model to save some of the world's most endangered species, while at the same time working to ensure that local communities benefit from conservation efforts. The Wildlife Conservation Network (WCN), an organization based in Los Altos, California, works to protect threatened species by focusing on what it terms 'conservation entrepreneurs' -- people who are passionate about saving wildlife and have creative ideas for dong so. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3330 2008-09-11T14:30:00Z 2013-07-07T02:35:09Z Prince Charles says hedge funds could save rainforests Prince Charles renewed his call to protect rainforests for the services they provide humanity. Speaking Wednesday at a black-tie dinner in London, Charles compared the need to protect forests to fighting a war. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3337 2008-09-09T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:24Z Big computer makers pitch energy efficiency to sell more services, equipment Tech giants are using high power costs to market new energy efficiency computers to large corporate data centers, reports the <i>Wall Street Journal</i>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3345 2008-09-04T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:15:25Z Ghana becomes first country to sign sustainable timber pact with the E.U. The European Union has signed a sustainable forestry deal with Ghana that would stop imports of illegally-harvested timber from the West African nation, according to a statement released by the European Forest Institute. The agreement comes under the European Commission's 2003 Action Plan on Forest Law Enforcement, Governance and Trade (FLEGT), which seeks to address illicit timber imports. The regulation requires chain-of-custody documentation for timber to be imported into the E.U. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3223 2008-08-15T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:55Z PG&E will build the world's largest solar power plant California electricity producer PG&E Thursday announced a plan to build two giant solar photovoltaic power plants that will cover 12.5 square miles and have a peak generating capacity of 800 megawatts. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3238 2008-08-12T14:30:00Z 2009-06-29T21:45:08Z "Turtle carbon" could help protect rainforests and save endangered sea turtles Using carbon credits to promote rainforest conservation could help protect endangered sea turtles in some parts of the world, argues a carbon finance expert. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3262 2008-08-06T14:30:00Z 2009-12-13T04:20:57Z Shift from poverty-driven to industry-driven deforestation may help conservation A shift from poverty-driven deforestation to industry-driven deforestation in the tropics may offer new opportunities for forest conservation, argues a new paper published in the journal Trends in Evolution & Ecology. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3265 2008-08-05T14:30:00Z 2009-01-02T02:50:35Z Corporations become prime driver of deforestation, providing clear target for environmentalists <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://travel.mongabay.com/suriname/150/suriname_1575.JPG" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The major drivers of tropical deforestation have changed in recent decades. According to a forthcoming article, deforestation has shifted from poverty-driven subsistence farming to major corporations razing forests for large-scale projects in mining, logging, oil and gas development, and agriculture. While this change makes many scientists and conservationists uneasy, it may allow for more effective action against deforestation. Rhett A. Butler of Mongabay.com, a leading environmental science website focusing on tropical forests, and William F. Laurance of the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama believe that the shift to deforestation by large corporations gives environmentalists and concerned governments a clear, identifiable target that may prove more responsive to environmental concerns. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3128 2008-07-17T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:36Z Gore launches second campaign... for Earth In a speech Thursday, Al Gore challenged the U.S. to generate 100 percent of its electricity from zero carbon emission sources within 10 years. Speaking at Washington's Constitution Hall, Gore said America's security, environmental and economic crises are all related, and that measures to rein in greenhouse gas emissions will make the U.S. stronger, safer, and cleaner. "The survival of the United States of America as we know it is at risk," Gore said. "I don't remember a time in our country when so many things seemed to be going so wrong simultaneously." Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3143 2008-07-14T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:39Z Wal-Mart to ban sales of wood products from threatened rainforests Wal-Mart, America's biggest retailer, has joined an initiative to conserve the world's most valuable and threatened forests. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3034 2008-06-23T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:19Z Amazon soy moratorium extended; may be expanded to other products Soy crushers operating in the Brazilian Amazon have extended a two-year-old moratorium on the purchase of soybeans produced on rainforest lands deforested after 2006, reports Reuters. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3033 2008-06-23T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:19Z The green movement has to become a rainbow-colored movement in order to be successful Van Jones, a social and environmental activist, believes a greener economy not only could save the planet, but also must provide pathways out of poverty for America's disadvantaged communities. A civil rights lawyer from Yale University, Jones started promoting the idea of "green-collar jobs" in 2005 through the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights in Oakland, California. In September 2007, he launched the "Green for All" campaign. Jones recently took time to share his perspectives with Mongabay.com. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/3081 2008-06-04T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:28Z Big Farms Can Make the Leap to Organic Farming, Study Suggests Large fruit and vegetable growers can adopt the methods of small-scale organic farms while maintaining crop yields, keeping pests in check, and improving the health of their soil, researchers report in the July 2008 issue of Agriculture, Ecosystems and Environment. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2937 2008-05-28T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:01Z Future cities will be more like ecosystems that enrich society and the environment As The World Science Festival continues in New York this week, specialists in vastly diverse fields across scientific disciplines are coming together to talk about ideas, problems and solutions. From Astronomy to Bioacoustics, the dialogues about challenges and opportunities are rich and inspiring. At the front of this year's festival rests the issue of sustainability and how scientists, specialists and society will address the imminent environmental and economic trials we are sure to face in a rapidly changing and uncertain world. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2915 2008-04-07T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:13:58Z The FSC responds to its critics <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/08/0407nina150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last month, Mongabay.com reported on recent and various criticisms of the FSC (the Forest Stewardship Council). The FSC is an international organization that certifies forest products which, according to their standards, have been harvested in an environmentally-sustainable and socially-responsible manner. Response to the article was significant. It was picked up by the Ecological Internet's email campaign and was mentioned on numerous environmental web sites and blogs. At the time of the publication, the FSC had not responded to requests for comments. But in the following interview, FSC International Communications Manager Nina Haase answers each criticism separately and addresses several other issues, such as the FSC and climate change, the organization's monitoring capabilities, and its adaptation to new environmental concerns. Ultimately she responds to the big question raised by critics: is the FSC stamp still credible? Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2916 2008-04-07T14:30:00Z 2013-07-06T18:57:29Z Wal-Mart pushes for greener manufacturing in China Wal-Mart, the world's largest retailer, will hold a meeting of around 1,000 of its Chinese suppliers in an effort to reduce its environmental impact, said Lee Scott, Wal-Mart's CEO, in an interview with the <i>Financial Times</i>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2930 2008-04-02T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:14:00Z Investing to save rainforests <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/08/0402HMP_portrait_100.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Last week London-based Canopy Capital, a private equity firm, announced a historic deal to preserve the rainforest of Iwokrama, a 371,000-hectare reserve in the South American country of Guyana. In exchange for funding a "significant" part of Iwokrama's $1.2 million research and conservation program on an ongoing basis, Canopy Capital secured the right to develop value for environmental services provided by the reserve. Essentially the financial firm has bet that the services generated by a living rainforest &#8212; including rainfall generation, climate regulation, biodiversity maintenance and carbon storage &#8212; will eventually be valuable in international markets. Hylton Murray-Philipson, director of Canopy Capital, says the agreement &#8212; which returns 80 percent of the proceeds to the people of Guyana &#8212; could set the stage for an era where forest conservation is driven by the pursuit of profit rather than overt altruistic concerns. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2789 2008-03-27T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:13:32Z Private equity firm buys rights to ecosystem services of Guyana rainforest A private equity firm has purchased the rights to environmental services generated by 371,000 hectare rainforest reserve in Guyana. Terms of the deal were not disclosed, but the agreement is precedent-setting in that a financial firm is betting that the services generated by a living rainforest &#8212; including rainfall generation, climate regulation, biodiversity maintenance and water storage &#8212; will eventually see compensation in international markets. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2825 2008-03-12T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:48:28Z Merrill Lynch invests $9M in rainforest conservation, expects profit Merrill Lynch's investment in a rainforest conservation project in the Indonesian province of Aceh is worth $9 million over four years, reports Thomas Wright of <i><a target=_balnk href=http://blogs.wsj.com/environmentalcapital/2008/03/11/merrill-lynch-turning-trees-into-money/?mod=hpp_europe_blogs>The Wall Street Journal</a></i>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2828 2008-03-11T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:48:28Z New review system helps companies adapt to ecosystem degradation A new accountability initiative will help companies factor ecosystem degradation into their business decisions. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2708 2008-02-21T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:13:20Z Private sector pumping hundreds of billions into cleantech The private sector is "pumping hundreds of billions of dollars" into cleaner and renewable energies, says a new publication released yesterday by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2735 2008-02-15T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:48:07Z Nike to launch "green" eco-shoe When Nike unveils the $185 Air Jordan XX3 this weekend at the NBA All-Star Game festivities this weekend, it will be the culmination of a company-wide effort to reduce the environmental impact of its footwear manufacturing, according to <a target=_blank href=http://online.wsj.com/article/SB120303911940170393.html?mod=todays_us_marketplace>The Wall Street Journal</a>. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2559 2007-12-07T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:12:52Z REDD will fail if needs of forest communities aren't addressed Initiatives to reduce emissions by reducing tropical deforestation (REDD) will fail unless policymakers adequately address the underlying drivers of forest degradation and destruction, argues a new report published by the Center for International Forestry Research (CIFOR). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2570 2007-12-06T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:12:53Z Merrill Lynch announces carbon credits-for-forest conservation partnership Merrill Lynch is working with Carbon conservation, an ecosystem services firms, to explore opportunities in avoided deforestation and integrated sustainable land management. The partnership was announced Thursday in Bali, Indonesia, where more than 10,000 policymakers, scientists, and activists are meeting to discuss a post-Kyoto framework on limiting climate change. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2435 2007-11-28T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:47:06Z Google aims to make renewable energy sources cheaper than coal Tuesday Google announced an initiative to develop electricity from renewable energy sources that will be cheaper than electricity produced from coal. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2443 2007-11-27T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:12:33Z Video game-makers score low on sustainability While environmentalists, scientists, development exports, and policymakers across the political spectrum are ethusiastic about the idea of offsetting carbon emissions by preventing deforestation (a concept known as "avoided deforestation" or Reduced Emissions from Deforestation and Degradation (REDD)), the concept still faces many challenges, especially in implementation. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2459 2007-11-21T14:30:39Z 2008-12-16T10:12:36Z Subway sandwiches launches first fast-food recycling program Sandwich chain Subway is implementing a recycling program, switching from conventional napkins, cutlery and plastic cups, and reducing gasoline use in an effort to minimize its impact on the environment, according to a report published in The Wall Street Journal. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2494 2007-11-07T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:47:17Z Governors announce energy efficiency push for computing The National Governors Association (NGA) today announced an innovative clean energy partnership between the NGA Chair's Initiative Securing a Clean Energy Future (SCEF) and the Climate Savers Computing Initiative (CSCI), founded by Google and Intel, to spur deployment of more energy efficient computers and servers in state offices and agencies. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2374 2007-10-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:52Z IBM finds recycling can cut solar cell manufacturing costs IBM today announced a silicon wafer recycling system that could help ease the refined silicon shortage that has driven up production costs of solar energy panels. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2332 2007-09-09T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:43Z World's first sustainable tuna fishery certified The world's first certified sustainable tuna fishery was announced today, a move that could help save one of the world's most valuable fish -- and the fishing industry that relies on it -- from extinction. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2355 2007-09-05T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:48Z Big companies push energy efficiency Some of the world's largest companies are pushing green initiatives to improve energy efficiency in office buildings reports the Wall Street Journal. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2178 2007-08-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:13Z Guidelines to ensure biofuels production won't hurt the environment Environmentalists have long seen biofuels as a means to improve the sustainability of transportation and energy use since they are a renewable source of energy that can be replenished on an ongoing basis. Further, because biofuels are generally derived from plants, which absorb carbon from the atmosphere as they grow, biofuel production offers the potential to help offset carbon dioxide emissions and mitigate climate change. Nonetheless, in recent years, there has been considerable backlash against biofuels, which are increasingly viewed as a threat to the environment. Green groups now point to large-scale land conversion for energy crops, higher food prices, and a spate to studies that suggest net emissions from corn ethanol are little better than those from fossil fuels, to caution that biofuels can cause more problems than they address. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2179 2007-08-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:14Z Business has to lead the Clean Up of the Enviroment Though the next two and-a-bit years will remain in a sort of ecological standstill, the remaining century is going to be the boiling point for earth. Will it crumble in to a roiling mass of disaster or will we finally manage to remove such a deep imprint as we have made over the past 30 years in the next 10. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2192 2007-08-28T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:16Z UPS finds environment a top concern among customers, pushes paperless billing UPS recently surveyed its customers to find out what would make them change billing methods to paperless PDF invoices. Surprisingly, the shipping giant found the primary motivating factor -- cited by 40 percent of those polled -- was concern for the environment. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2203 2007-08-27T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:18Z Wall Street looks at energy efficiency to boost profits Today the Wall Street Journal featured a special section on energy efficiency. The paper reports that business is increasingly looking at reducing energy use as a way to improve the bottom line. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2234 2007-08-17T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:24Z Sony launches consumer electronics recycling program Sony has launched a recycling program for consumer electronics. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2266 2007-08-10T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:30Z Apple comes up a bit short on eco-credentials of new iMac While Apple has touted the environmental attributes of its newest iMac, critics say the new computer failed to live up to the company's goals for the use of mercury, reports the San Jose Mercury. In May, Apple said it would eventually replace mercury-containing fluorescent backlights in its LCD monitors with LEDs backlights, but the new computers don't use the new technology. The company said it still face technological hurdles in rolling out the new LCDs. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2093 2007-07-24T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:57Z Wal-Mart demand drives "greener" shrimp farms Wal-Mart's demand for sustainably-produced products is driving "greener" production of shrimp in Thailand, reports the <i>Wall Street Journal</i> (WSJ). Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2124 2007-07-12T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:03Z Cosmetics retailer announces sustainable palm oil initiative The Body Shop International today introduced a sustainable palm oil initiative, the first for the beauty industry. The company said the move was spurred by growing concerns over the impact of oil palm plantations on biodiversity. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2138 2007-07-10T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:06Z Ford Motor to introduce plug-in hybrids, but lags behind rivals Monday Ford Motor Co. announced a partnership with utility Southern California Edison to test a fleet of plug-in hybrid (PHEV) vehicles in an effort to make the technology more accessible to consumers, reduce petroleum-related emissions and improve the cost-effectiveness of the nation's electricity grid. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2139 2007-07-09T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:06Z McDonald's bolsters eco credentials with recycled biodiesel <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/07/0709mcdonalds.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>McDonald's Corp. (Public, NYSE:MCD), the fast-food chain, has bolstered its 'green' credentials by announcing that its UK distribution fleet will be powered by biodiesel made of recycled cooking oil from its restaurants. While the move is expected to save only around 1,675 tons of carbon annually, environmentalists say it sets an important precedent for the parent company and the fast-food industry as a whole. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2141 2007-07-08T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:06Z How to save the world's oceans from overfishing <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/07/0709-sutton-150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Global fishing stocks are in trouble. After expanding from 18 millions tons in 1950 to around 94 million tons in 2000, annual world fish catch has leveled off and may even be declining. Scientists estimate that the number of large predatory fish in the oceans has fallen by 90 percent since the 1950s, while about one-quarter of the world's fisheries are overexploited, depleted, or recovering from depletion. Despite these dire trends, the situation is changing. Today some of the world's largest environmental groups are focused on addressing the health of marine life and oceans, while sustainable fisheries management is at the top of the agenda for intergovenmental bodies. At the forefront of these efforts is Mike Sutton, director of the Monterey Bay Aquarium's conservation program: the Center for the Future of the Oceans. The aquarium, which has long been recognized as one of the world's most important marine research facilities, is pioneering new strategies for protecting the planet's oceans. Sutton says the approach has four parts: establishing new marine protected areas, pushing for ocean policy reform, promoting sustainable seafood, and protecting wildlife and marine ecosystems. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2143 2007-07-08T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:07Z Home improvement giant bans illegal wood products B&Q, the third largest retailer of home improvement materials, announced that within three years, all Brazilian wood products sold in China would come from certified sources. B&Q has 60 stores in China. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2144 2007-07-08T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:46:07Z Inflatable concentrators may cut cost of solar below conventional power plants <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/07/0708ces.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>Cool Earth Solar, a Livermore, California-based company developing an innovative way for capturing solar energy, has merged with Radiant Energy, a developer and owner of renewable and clean energy power plants including solar, geothermal, and hydroelectric. Rob Lamkin, CEO of Radiant Energy, says the merger will help ramp up the technology, which uses inflatable solar concentrators to minimize use of refined silicon, a costly ingredient in solar cells. Lamkin says the technology could dramatically reduce the cost solar energy, bringing it below the cost natural gas-fired power plants. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2008 2007-06-20T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:41Z Google to be carbon neutral by year end Google Inc. aims to be carbon neutral by the end of 2007, according to a statement posted on the Official Google Blog. The search giant plans to fight global warming by investing in and using renewable energy sources; reducing energy consumption by maximizing efficiency, and purchasing carbon offsets for the greenhouse gas emissions that it cannot reduce directly. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2009 2007-06-20T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:41Z Amazon.com, eBay rank worst for global warming efforts Amazon.com and eBay rank at the bottom of the list when it comes to reducing their impact on climate, reports a new analysis from Climate Counts, a nonprofit that works to promote responsible climate policy among corporations. Microsoft and Yahoo rank at the top of Internet and software companies rated, while Google is in the middle of the pack. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2014 2007-06-19T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:42Z Google will put $10M towards plug-in hybrid cars Google.org, Google Inc.'s philanthropic arm, today unveiled an initiative to convert hybrid cars to plug-in hybrid vehicles (PHEVs), a move that will cut carbon dioxide emissions, reduce oil use, and help stabilize the electrical grid. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2028 2007-06-13T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:44Z Google, Intel seek greener computers Google, Intel, and other tech giants announced an energy efficiency drive develop "greener" computers that use 50 percent less power by 2010. The plan, dubbed the Climate Savers Computing Initiative, seeks to reduce emissions of greenhouse gases that contribute to global warming.. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2033 2007-06-12T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:45Z Google, Microsoft launch energy efficiency initiative Google, Microsoft, and other tech giants announced an energy efficiency drive to reduce computer power consumption by 50 percent by 2010. The scheme, dubbed the Climate Savers Computing Initiative, seeks to reduce the emission of greenhouse gases that contribute to climate change global warming. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2041 2007-06-11T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:47Z World's largest movement has no leader but 100M employees The world's largest movement has no name, no leader, and no ideology, but may directly involve more than 100 million people, said a green business pioneer. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2061 2007-06-06T14:30:00Z 2009-09-08T04:20:24Z Can cattle ranchers and soy farmers save the Amazon? <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/07/0607jcc2-150.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>John Cain Carter, a Texas rancher who moved to the heart of the Amazon 11 years ago and founded what is perhaps the most innovative organization working in the Amazon, Alianca da Terra, believes the only way to save the Amazon is through the market. Carter says that by giving producers incentives to reduce their impact on the forest, the market can succeed where conservation efforts have failed. What is most remarkable about Alianca's system is that it has the potential to be applied to any commodity anywhere in the world. That means palm oil in Borneo could be certified just as easily as sugar cane in Brazil or sheep in New Zealand. By addressing the supply chain, tracing agricultural products back to the specific fields where they were produced, the system offers perhaps the best market-based solution to combating deforestation. Combining these approaches with large-scale land conservation and scientific research offers what may be the best hope for saving the Amazon. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/2081 2007-06-03T14:30:00Z 2009-01-27T15:44:57Z Globalization could save the Amazon rainforest <table align="left"><tr><td><img src="http://photos.mongabay.com/07/0530dan_nepstad_1a.jpg" align="left"/></td></tr></table>The Amazon basin is home to the world's largest rainforest, an ecosystem that supports perhaps 30 percent of the world's terrestrial species, stores vast amounts of carbon, and exerts considerable influence on global weather patterns and climate. Few would dispute that it is one of the planet's most important landscapes. Despite its scale, the Amazon is also one of the fastest changing ecosystems, largely as a result of human activities, including deforestation, forest fires, and, increasingly, climate change. Few people understand these impacts better than Dr. Daniel Nepstad, one of the world's foremost experts on the Amazon rainforest. Now head of the Woods Hole Research Center's Amazon program in Belem, Brazil, Nepstad has spent more than 23 years in the Amazon, studying subjects ranging from forest fires and forest management policy to sustainable development. Nepstad says the Amazon is presently at a point unlike any he's ever seen, one where there are unparalleled risks and opportunities. While he's hopeful about some of the trends, he knows the Amazon faces difficult and immediate challenges. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/1855 2007-05-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:12Z HSBC invests $100M in global warming research HSBC announced Wednesday it would spend $100 million on climate change research. The investment, which will go to the Climate Group, Earthwatch Institute, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) and WWF over a five year period, is the largest donation ever made by a British company. Rhett Butler tag:news.mongabay.com,2005:Article/1856 2007-05-30T14:30:39Z 2008-12-29T06:45:12Z HSBC puts $100 towards global warming research HSBC announced Wednesday it would spend $100 million on climate change research. The investment, which will go to the Climate Group, Earthwatch Institute, Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute (STRI) and WWF over a five year period, is the largest donation ever made by a British company. Rhett Butler