For those of you who picked up your free usable bag last week at the Union, you’re in good shape if you decide to move to Austin!
“Austin, Texas, has passed a law restricting plastic and paper retail carryout bags. The law, which will take effect March 1, 2013, allows for three options: paper or plastic bag of thicker construction with handles, or reusable linen or woven bags, says Bob Gedert, director of Austin Resource Recovery, in an interview. Because of the replacement options, the city is characterizing it as a bag regulation, not ban.
The new law differs from what Austin City Council proposed in December, which involved a 52-cent interim fee for single-use bags. Gedert says administrative challenges, retail relationship to challenges and being accountable to the public made that “too difficult a path to take.”
Read more about this interesting and controversial step, HERE.
“Contrary to popular belief, humans have failed to address the earth’s worsening emergencies of climate change, species’ extinction and resource overconsumption not because of a lack of information, but because of a lack of imagination, social scientists and artists say.
At a conference of the American Academy for the Advancement of Science (AAAS) in Vancouver, British Columbia, experts argues that the path to a truly sustainable future is through the muddy waters of emotions, values, ethics, and most importantly, imagination.
Humans’ perceptions of reality are filtered by personal experiences and values, said David Maggs, a concert pianist and PhD student at the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability at the University of British Columbia (UBC).
As a result, the education and communication paradigm of “if we only knew better, we’d do better” is not working. Maggs told attendees at the world’s largest general science meeting. ‘We don’t live in the real world, but live only in the world we imagine.'”
Want to learn more about reality or the lack thereof? Read more HERE.
“Fans of beer will soon have yet another reason to imbibe, when a new partnership between Anheuser-Busch (now AB-inBev) and a company called Blue Marble Bio takes off. The two firms have launched a venture to convert brewery waste into a group of carboxylic acids that have a wide variey of commerical uses, including the manufacture of shaving creams and soaps. This renewable source of carboxylic acids will help the chemical industry along as it transitions out of petroleum-based formulas, and as a side benefit, the process also yields biogas that will be used to generate renewable electricity.
With the new venture, Anheuser-Busch also pushes the “green beer” movement up a few notches beyond the kind of measures that have becom expected from resopnsible beverage companies, such as water conservation, waste reduction and the intallation of renewable energy.”
Read more HERE.
The latest from Mark Gunther of GreenBiz.com:
“I’d like to believe that we can shop our way to be a better world. It’s unlikely. If our economy is going to become more just and sustainable, change will have to come from the top down, not from the bottom up.
This roll of toilet paper explains why.
Called Moka, this bathroom tissue comes from a company called Cascades, which is headquartered in Montreal. It’s made from 100 percent recycled paper, and it has a lower carbon footprint than conventional toilet paper. Moka costs less to manufacture than ordinary white toilet paper and uses less bleach. And it works fine. Trust me – the company sent me a sample roll.
‘It’s beneficial for us, for consumers and for the environment,’ says Isabelle Faivre, US Marketing Director for Cascades.
The trouble is, you can’t buy Moka in a store.
That’s because Moka is being, er, rolled out exclusively in the away-from-home market. That is, it’s being sold to distributors who supply office buildings, schools, colleges, hospitals, restaurants and hotels. ‘Companies have that need to look green, to make them feel better about themselves,’ says Faivre. But consumers aren’t ready to accept off-color bathroom tissue.”
Read more on the issues of changing consumer behavior HERE.
How have your consumer habits changed? What is important to you in making the decision to buy a product?
Chevrolet Introduces Environmental Labeling on All Vehicles
“This March, Chevrolet will start providing customers with information on a number of the environmental features of their vehicles, via “Ecologic” environmental window labels that will initially appear on the 2012 Sonic, the company’s new sub-compact car.
“Later on, labeling will be rolled out across the entire 2013 vehicle line in North America, and in doing so, Chevrolet will be the first automotive brand to provide a label of this kind on its vehicles.”
Read more HERE