Saturday, July 25, 2009

Where does our trash go?

The Boston Globe just published a story about how pieces of trash have been tracked to their final destination in the Greater Boston area and will soon be tracked in other cities. The tracking project, initiated by MIT’s SENSEable City Laboratory, has been developed in the "hope that tracking the trash through the disposal system - and making it viewable in real time on a blog - will cause consumers to give more thought to what they are tossing out."

How cool! I've often wondered if one of the reasons why some people do not recycle had anything to do with the fact that what they throw out magically "disappears." Of course, we know that it doesn't magically disappear, as demonstrated by the giant plastic dump in the Pacific Ocean; however, for the vast majority of Americans, what we throw away is out of sight and out of mind. I hope this MIT project serves as a means for people to feel more responsible about what they throw at the Earth.

Thursday, July 16, 2009

Ecotowns. What about the eco-schools?

I think we could use some of these ecotowns (see here too). No doubt we'd face these same controversies in the United States. The British government is planning to build eleven towns by 2020 that drastically reduce their carbon footprints by reducing energy consumption in the home, changing transportation, and (I think I have this right) encouraging super-local food growth.

Question for me: What are the schools in these towns going to do?

Saturday, July 11, 2009

Meatless days and water bottle bans?

A town in Australia has voted to 400-2 to outlaw disposable water bottles and install water fountains while the Flemmish town of Ghent has opted to make one day a week meatless. Why? Carbon reduction. Read the story at Green Inc.

What do you say we get Penn State in on this? I guess OPP will have to step it up and the College of Agriculture and our big business deals through housing and food services might have to change just a little bit. It's nice to dream a bit.