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Carbon Dioxide

Baby Steps to Zero Carbon

Baby Steps

There is a big gap between my carbon footprint today and the carbon neutral future I want. Not only is that gap large, our family CO2 emissions just increased with our new child! How can I call myself a climate hawk when my carbon footprint just grew? I'm a pragmatist and temporary setbacks are often a part of making forward progress.

Who Can Put a Price on a Forest?

Tree captures carbon and kite

Actually, the Forest Service did just that (and not in the logging sense either). The USFS recently completed a nationwide study of urban trees and the economic and environmental benefits they provide. The Forest Service study calculated urban tree canopy cover, annual carbon sequestration, air pollution removal and their value for each state and many cities in the United States.

Winds of Change in the Four Corners?

North Wind blowing

The Four Corners region where Arizona, Utah, Colorado and New Mexico meet can be pretty windy. On a particularly breezy day between the Grand Canyon and Four Corners Monument I saw roadside vendors having a 'Wind Sale'. Unfortunately, no one was buying. The question of the day: 'Is the wind blowing away from dirty coal and toward renewable energy?' Or are we caught in a dust storm with no idea of which way is up?

Your Car is making you Fat, Angry and Broke (and what you can do about it)

bike vs car stencil

I've discovered some bad news. Your car is making you fat, angry and broke. But, I've also found out what you can do about it. You may be wondering who I am and what do I have against cars. Believe it or not, I'm a gearhead and I do love cars. As a kid my favorite t-shirt had a silk-screened '57 Chevy. I read car books and magazines from cover to cover. I think cars can be useful, fun, beautiful and exciting. Unfortunately, it turns out that our cars don't love us.

Kill Your (old) Refrigerator

Energy Star Rebate Check

A few weeks ago I wrote about an appliance rebate program in New Mexico. The NM Energy Conservation and Management Division offered $200 rebates for upgrading either a refrigerator, clothes washer or furnace (lots of $ still available for furnace upgrades). Well, we jumped on it and bought a new Energy Star refrigerator and replaced an early '90's vintage fridge. Thanks to my handy-dandy Kill-A-Watt EZ* I discovered how much money we are actually saving with the new fridge.

Stewart Brand's Little Green Book

Stewart Brand

Stewart Brand, editor of The Whole Earth Catalog, author of How Buildings Learn and founder of The Long Now Foundation has written Whole Earth Discipline: An EcoPragmatist Manifesto. I'm generally leery of manifestoes, but given Mr. Brand's resumé I decided to chance reading it. I'm still considering Whole Earth Discipline (and have incurred the wrath of my local library by keeping it overdue). Brand makes three statements in his book - Cities are Green, Genetic Engineering is Green, and Nukes are Green. Is he radical, practical or both?

Clearing the Air, or not, on the Navajo Reservation

Navajo Generating Station - Page, AZ

1) The people of the Navajo Nation need jobs and electricity.
2) The Navajo Nation has great wind and solar resources.
3) The Navajo Reservation has highly polluted air due to existing coal-fired power plants.
4) A key air pollution permit for the proposed Desert Rock coal power plant has been remanded.
5) ?
6) The Navajo Nation's Diné Power Authority and Sithe Global Power are committed to moving forward with the Desert Rock Coal Power Plant.

LEEDing by Example

Santa Fe Community Convention Center - architectural rendering

The Santa Fe Community Convention Center (quite a mouthful) has just earned the LEED Gold certification. This means that the new convention center 'was designed (by Santa Fe-based Spears Architects and Fentress Architects) and built using strategies aimed at improving ...

Take Climate Action in Santa Fe (and worldwide) Cadillac Ranch

WHAT: International Day of Climate Action in Santa Fe, NM - Human 350 Postcard, Coal March, Procession of Trees, and Critical Mass Bike Ride to the Roundhouse, and Rally to demand action on climate change, plant trees, and deliver a powerful message (both literally and figuratively) to our representatives.
WHEN: Saturday, October 24, 2009 1-4PM
WHERE: 1:00 CCA – for 350 Human Postcard, 2:00 March to Roundhouse departs from CCA and marches down Old Pecos/Old Santa Fe Trail. Rally at Roundhouse (West side).

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