Category Archives: Green Solutions

The Metropolitan Council approves a $2M grant to fund a landmark, transit-oriented development in the heart of St. Louis Park, Minnesota

St. Louis Park, MN, December 11, 2015 — /EPR ENVIRONMENT NEWS/ — On December 9, 2015 and after overwhelming enthusiasm and support from a rigorous application and vetting process, the Metropolitan Council approved funding for PLACE’s St. Louis Park Community. The Council approved 2 million dollars in funding from its Livable Communities Account for a Transit-Oriented Development (LCA-TOD) grant after the proposed project demonstrated a breakthrough approach to meeting housing and economic development needs in the Twin Cities. The funds will be used to help secure site acquisition at the former McGarvey Coffee property, pioneer alternative energy sources, and integrate stormwater improvement with infrastructure like green roofs and an urban forest.

A nonprofit called PLACE (Projects Linking Art, Community, and Environment) heads up the community endeavor in concert with the City of St. Louis Park, fellow eco-minded and socially conscious companies like Allianz Life, Stantec, Shaw-Lundquist, Lindquist & Vennum, MSR, LIFT, and Rachel Contracting that have invested in the project, other private partners, and public collaborators like Hennepin County. The community will elevate affordable living, design, and artistic culture in the city and will be located near the expected Green Line extension (Southwest Light Rail) Wooddale Station. The development’s potential positive impact is staggering, with healthy homes for 300 households across the income spectrum supported by a mobility hub, urban agriculture, live and work spaces, a hotel, and a renewable energy generation system that consumes food waste created by its inhabitants and surrounding neighbors.

Chris Velasco, PLACE’s Executive Director, observed, “I think this project will be of national significance for communities that want to effectively leverage their scarce resources.”

Ryan Kelley, City of St. Louis Park Planner, says, “The City of St. Louis Park is extremely proud to be the co-recipient with PLACE of the Met Council’s largest transit oriented development grant for a new sustainable community of regional significance.”

“PLACE is an excellent project, for the city and the region. Turning vacant, unused property into a community space with alternative energy features, that is connected to other uses, like transit, is just the kind of investment the Council wants to make toward a livable communities and a prosperous region” – Erin Heelan, TOD Grants Coordinator, Metropolitan Council Livable Communities.

Executive Director Velasco thanks the Metropolitan Council for its confidence and support on behalf of the entire team and the residents of St. Louis Park.

MEDIA CONTACT

Peter Sieve (612) 326-0409 pete@welcometoplace.org
Elizabeth Bowling (612) 326-0399 elizabeth@welcometoplace.org

www.welcometoplace.org

 

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Renewable Home Energy.org Educates and Connects

Renewable energy – if you haven’t noticed, it’s the buzz around the world. We are using an alarming amount of fossil fuels every day; fossil fuels that won’t last forever. Some experts say we will be known as the generation that destroys the earth unless we change our energy behavior now.

“Renewable Energy makes sense from both a financial and a green responsibility” says Todd Sachs, co-founder and Chief Marketing Officer of www.renewablehomeenergy.org.

“We are committed in educating consumers on how to turn their homes into Renewable Energy Homes. We help by connecting consumers with qualified installers throughout the United States so they can save money on their fast rising energy bills, create more value in their home investment, and join together in reducing dependency on fossil fuels; together reducing the carbon footprint.” Sachs says.

A recent press release from the whitehouse.gov states the following:
“President Obama is committed to an “all-of-the-above” approach that develops all American energy sources in a safe and responsible way and builds a clean and secure energy future. That’s why the President’s plan:

Challenges Americans to double renewable electricity generation again by 2020. In order to double generation from wind, solar, and geothermal sources by 2020, relative to 2012 levels, the President called on Congress to make the renewable energy Production Tax Credit permanent and refundable, which will provide incentive and certainty for investments in new clean energy. Instead of continuing century-old subsidies to oil companies, the President believes that we need to invest in the energy of the future. During the President’s first term, clean energy tax incentives attracted billions of dollars in private investment in almost 50,000 clean energy projects, creating tens of thousands of jobs. Permanent extension keeps the momentum building, while creating new jobs in clean energy.”

Once Americans realize just how possible it is to remove their home from the grid completely and/or partially, many will turn to clean energy sources such as wind, solar and geothermal for home energy systems. Renewable Home Energy (www.renewablehomeenergy.org) just launched last week and is serving-up a great way to connect homeowners with qualified renewable energy installers throughout the entire United States.

Renewable Home Energy is committed to working with local governments, manufactures and installers to help develop affordable ways for consumers to save money with Renewable Energy to remove them from the grid and reduce the carbon footprint by reducing the usage of the finite fossil fuels.

The process is easy. Just click on www.renewablehomeenergy.org and learn about Renewable Energy for your home. You can also complete a form to connect with a Renewable Energy Installer. You will be contacted by qualified installers in your immediate area. They will review your current energy consumption and suggest the best Renewable Energy alternatives for your home.

There are great tax incentives for you to install renewable energy in your home, and great finance options with 4% or less interest rates for up to 10 year terms for qualified buyers.

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Compostory.org Launches IndieGoGo Crowdfunding Campaign to Develop Digital Learning Platform

Educating local government officials on the benefits of recycling their cities’ organic waste is about to become a whole lot easier, thanks to the digital age. Compostory.org, a brand-new media company with operations in Malmö, Sweden and San Francisco, California, just launched its maiden 35-day crowdfunding campaign on IndieGoGo.com.

Compostory.org is dedicated to packaging an unprecedented online learning platform for local governments in effort to bring officials up to speed on organic waste management practices. The team is driven by Camille W. Duran, a recognized media expert specializing in building digital platforms for the knowledge industry.

“As of today, it’s not easy enough for influencers from around the world to get basic education on organic waste management” according to Duran. “The difficulty of the early-stage research is a real barrier to action. We want to build a platform showcasing industry knowledge and great stories, to equip participants with a vision and a thorough understanding of the topic.”

Compostory.org is currently leveraging different funding avenues. The IndieGoGo.com 17k goal will directly finance the production of a first course, featuring seven to twelve minute documentary-style videos with whiteboard animated lessons designed by industry experts. The open course, comprised of several modules, will be accessible on-demand from an online course catalog for free. The first course will be initially distributed to 200 local governments in the US and Europe and aims at encouraging officials to start effectively managing and profiting from their city’s organic waste stream.

Access to best practice guidelines, expert opinions, cutting-edge research and most importantly, success stories in neighboring cities, packaged in one online platform, can ultimately pave way for a domino effect. “It’s very exciting to see the impact that online education is having on other industries” says Camille, “and it’s time for the recycling industry to truly profit from it as well.”

Compostory.org aims to become a premium digital platform for knowledge sharing in the field.

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National Trust hires Kids’ Council

The National Trust has announced that, following a recruitment drive over the summer holidays, a group of ten youngsters, aged between seven and 11 from across the country, have been recruited by the charity for its Kid’s Council. The children will help the charity to evolve its ’50 Things To Do Before You‘re 11¾’ campaign and provide advice on how National Trust places can spark more children’s interest in nature and the outdoors.

The new Kids’ Council held its inaugural meeting at Dyrham Park near Bath and jumped into their roles with gusto. Having all tackled the ’50 Things’ list, the children are passionate about wildlife and outside activities and brimming with ideas to make the National Trust more engaging for youngsters.

Their first proposal to create a mud slide was put into practise with the help of a large hillside and Rob Holden, Head Ranger at Dyrham Park. Installing rope swings at National Trust places and creating a country-wide nature trail were other ideas discussed by the young councillors

The nationwide search for the youngsters opened in August and attracted hundreds of applications from across the UK. The National Trust judges were looking for imaginative and enthusiastic candidates who showed a real passion for the outdoors. The response from the nation’s children both inspired and delighted the judging panel with the applicants sending in photos, drawing pictures and even creating treasure maps.

Some of the more weird and wonderful suggestions that came up in some of the applications included meerkats at National Trust properties, barefoot nature walks and going inside a large rabbit hole to “see what it’s like being a rabbit”.

The successful applicants forming the new Kids’ Council are:

– Jessica Swales, aged 8 from North Yorkshire
– Max Hodgson, aged 8 from West Midlands
– Francesca Carrannante, aged 8 from London
– Kai Bickley, aged 7 from West Midlands
– Kit Le Froy, aged 8 from Cornwall
– Leif Wilson-Palmer, aged 8 from Gloucestershire
– Harry Wilson, aged 10 from Bristol
– Mia McDade, aged 8 from Stockport
– Sophia Tarling, aged 8 from Norwich
– Iona Howells, aged 11 from Kent

The members of the Kids’ Council and their families will be able to visit all National Trust places throughout the year to gain a true and deep understanding of what the National Trust has to offer. The children will report to the Getting Outdoors and Closer to Nature Programme board at the National Trust, and will share their recommendations at four meetings across the year.

Tony Berry, Visitor Experience Director of the National Trust, commented: “The applicants were imaginative, adventurous and exciting and we cannot wait to hear their views and start bringing their recommendations to life. The sheer number of applications shows that the children of Britain do want to get outdoors, have fun and connect with nature and our mission is to make this as accessible to all children as possible.”

Iona Howells, aged 11 from the Kids’ Council, said: “I am really proud to be part of the Kids’ Council. I want to make other children see that being outdoors can be fun and the National Trust has some great places where you can have heaps of fun – I hate sitting still inside so it is great to be part of getting other kids to play outside.”

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National Trust Holiday Cottages wins British Travel Award

National Trust Holiday Cottages has been named in the British Travel Awards 2012 as the winner of Best UK Cottage/Self Catering Booking Company. The announcement was made at a glamorous Gala Awards Dinner held at Battersea Evolution in London, attended by more than a thousand travel industry people.

National Trust Holiday Cottages have been operating as a holiday cottage business for over 50 years with some cottages dating back to at least the 15th century. Today, there are nearly 400 self catering cottages all with a unique style and character set in outstanding locations across the UK with all profits from bookings going directly back in to the National Trust’s conservation work.

Marianne Wanstall (Head of Holidays) said: “It is fabulous to be recognised in such high profile awards which are voted for by consumers and is a massive achievement for us and our unique product.

“The award is a tribute to the hard work and commitment of everyone at National Trust holiday cottages, from our contact centre team who deal directly with customers to the individuals who look after preparing and operating our portfolio of cottages across England, Wales and Northern Ireland.”

British Travel Awards’ chief executive Lorraine Barnes Burton said: “This year more than one million votes were cast by consumers to determine the winners of the coveted British Travel Awards. The Awards were created to reward travel companies, with the winning accolade being the benchmark for excellence when it comes to finding out who really is the best in the business of travel for the UK consumer. National Trust Holiday Cottages is to be congratulated on their achievement.”

Companies were nominated by the public before being voted for by the British consumer, including readers of News International publications – The Times, Sunday Times, the Sun and the Sunday Sun – listeners of Global Radio stations, including LBC and readers of the British Travel Awards magazine, ‘Check-In’. The voting process and results are overseen, scrutinized and audited by Deloitte LLP.

In 2012 more than one million votes were cast in The British Travel Awards making it the largest awards programme in the UK. The BTAs were created to reward the best companies in travel and are recognised by consumers and travel professionals throughout the UK. With categories spanning 75 types of holiday experience – transport, destination, cruise, customer service, holiday extras, and accommodation – The British Travel Awards is quite simply the benchmark for excellence when it comes to finding out who really is the best in the business.

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Nation rallies to safeguard iconic White Cliffs of Dover

A £1.2 million appeal launched by the National Trust in the summer to raise funds to acquire the iconic stretch of the White Cliffs of Dover coastline has reached its target in just 133 days, raising an average of £9,000 per day.

The Trust needed the money to buy a 0.8 mile stretch of this world-famous and much-loved piece of the Kent coastline overlooking the port.

It completes the missing link of coastline under National Trust care, uniting a stretch of more than 7km (nearly 5 miles) between the Trust’s visitor centre and South Foreland Lighthouse.

More than 16,000 people and organisations* have supported the White Cliffs of Dover appeal which was launched in June 2012 with an average donation of £40.21 (including Gift Aid) from members of the public.

Hundreds of messages of support were posted on a virtual White Cliffs of Dover on the charity’s website**.

Donations from supporters included a significant contribution from the Dover Harbour Board, which helped the Trust to reach its target earlier than had been anticipated, and support from the Regatta Foundation, Royal Oak Foundation and 16 National Trust supporter groups.

The fundraising drive was given a boost in July when a number of household names including Dame Vera Lynn, Dame Judi Dench and the soul singing sensation and Dover-born Joss Stone gave their support.

Writer and philosopher Julian Baggini spent a week in August at the White Cliffs in Dover looking into how they have come to symbolise what they mean for the UK’s national identity***.

Fiona Reynolds, who is in her final week as Director-General at the National Trust, said: “Thanks to the generosity and support of thousands of people we’ve reached our target nearly two months early.

“The Trust will now look to enhance the quality of access to this new land and build on some of the fantastic nature conservation work that has been carried out by the team on the ground.”

Standing proud at over 110 metres (taller than Big Ben or the same height as twenty-five London buses stacked on top of each other), the White Cliffs of Dover have witnessed many dramatic moments in England’s history.

These include the arrival of the Romans and the welcome return of British armed forces after the evacuation of Dunkirk during the Second World War.

The cliffs are also home to a rich array of wildlife including the Adonis blue butterfly, rare coastal plants such as oxtongue broomrape and sea carrot, and birds including skylark, the only pair of breeding ravens in Kent and peregrine falcons.

Alison Burnett, a volunteer on the White Cliffs of Dover team, added: “There has been a real buzz around the appeal with this once-in-a-lifetime opportunity to add the missing piece of the White Cliffs so that they are in the care of the National Trust.”

Hundreds of thousands of people come to visit the dramatic chalk cliffs every year with their wonderful views across the English Channel.

Notes to editors:
* The total number of people and organisations that donated to the White Cliffs of Dover appeal is 16,570.
** Examples of the messages of support and messages about why the White Cliffs of Dover matter can be found at www.nationaltrust.org.uk/whitecliffsappeal
** ‘A Home on the Rock’ by Julian Baggini was published in October and can be read on the blog that ran during his residency – whitecliffsofdoverwriter.wordpress.com

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The National Trust Reveals Kids’ Plea For More Family Time

The National Trust has revealed one in five 8-11 year olds want to spend more time with their parents and more than a third of parents said they want to spend more time with their kids.

While watching television and DVDs tops the YouGov poll* as the most common way for parents and children to spend time together in the UK** 26 per cent of children aged 8-11 years old and nearly half (49 per cent) of all parents surveyed said they would like to spend more time together just going for a walk.

To help families get out on an autumn walk, users of the website Mumsnet have provided some top tips on making sure that parents have got everything ready for a fun day out such as climbing a huge hill, flying a kite or hunting for some treasure on a beach.

Over the half-term period there will be hundreds of family walking adventures at National Trust properties as part of the Great British Walk, which has been organised in partnership with PruHealth.

These walks are the perfect way for kids to tick off their ’50 things to do before they’re 11 ¾’, including collecting and play conkers and picking and eating apples straight from the tree.

Simon Pryor, Natural Environment Director at the National Trust, said: “Despite the fact that TV seems to be dominating family life its really encouraging that children and parents want to spend more time together and that walking is seen as a great way of doing just that.

“Walking is a brilliant way for families to spend time together, get fit and discover the joy of the British countryside.

“And with so many great activities taking place at National Trust properties around the country this half-term there’s no better time to get out and go on a walking adventure.”

Mumsnet co-founder and CEO Justine Roberts added: “It’s all too easy to end up spending all family time in front of screens, watching TV or playing video games. Spending time with the children outdoors can be just as cheap as well as fun and educational and offers a bit of balance in a world dominated by X-Factor and Fifa 12.”

Dr William Bird, GP, said: “Children can benefit hugely from walking in the outdoors. High blood pressure, cholesterol and depression can be detected in children as young as 10, due to inactivity. Spending time with family, in the outdoors, can invigorate even the most TV or X-box-obsessed children.”

Free family friendly trails can be downloaded fromwww.nationaltrust.org.uk/greatbritishwalk and families can share their favourite walks online for the chance to win a stay in a National Trust holiday cottage.

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IL 1st Congressional District Cook County Voters Support Peloquin Suburban Preservation

The first election using the 1st Congressional Redistricted South Side of Chicago and their Southwest Suburbs extending into Will County has city voters crossing over to support the states suburban life style.

With 74% of the new district voters being from the original 1st district, many of original voters are pushing to preserve their weekend getaways in the suburbs and the continued expanse of the commuter train stations for their suburban and rural lifestyle.

City Folks are now realizing they’re far more dependent on their rural and suburban agriculture businesses and how city politics overlook the needs of the rural and suburban growth at their cost.

It’s a wake-up call for many in Cook County; with Will County positioned as one of the new “Agriculture Cross Roads Of America”, their grain export business offers significant growth in the emerging markets such as Viet Nam, Russia, and China, and that means more jobs, revenue for the state and lower costs for their districts agriculture needs.

This 1st Congressional Districts election is fast becoming the center stage for a nation, as Big City residents learn “Intermodal Growth” is the ticket to world competition, not a party ticket.

You simply cannot achieve Intermodal Growth for the agriculture business with the city politicians quest to keep the spend in the city at the expense of the state’s best opportunity to sustain and gain more jobs outside its original district. Here is a short video clip on Intermodal Job Growth.

As the 3rd largest city in the U.S., the voters are realizing they’re dismal job growth has been limited to their federally subsidized projects within the city versus rebuilding the city through better decisions on how to compete globally within the state.

A Win Win situation, without a solution for decades, it’s time for a change, and it starts with educating the people on how to best affect change, and why. There’s a need here, a need to turn things around before we lose the opportunity to reduce our state and nations overall deficit, which ultimately results in the loss of the federal funding we’ve grown to know as the way the City Politicians create more jobs.

The Don Peloquin Campaign for the 1st Congressional District supports growth through voter education. Many people are totally unaware that if Congress doesn’t pass the new Farm Bill, you may as well forget about the food stamp program with its $80 billion a year, or 80 percent of all spending in the $500 Billion Farm Bill. Our position is to grow globally with the best opportunities, and our suburbs and rural areas have the best potential of securing grants for jobs like the $6 million awarded to UW-Madison. That focuses on encouraging more farm-to-school programs like the Research, Education, Action and Policy Food Group’s farm-to-school program, which supplies area schools with fresh, locally produced fruits and vegetables. We need a well balanced spend to gain the maximum benefits for all.

The Time For Change Independent Voice:  Dedicated To Public Announcements That Affect Our Suburban and Rural Life. We simply state what’s before us from the eyes and ears of those affected.  Get Out And Vote For A Change, Visit www.peloquinforcongress.com and read for yourself.

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Jonathan Dollard, P.E. Joins Free Flow Power Corporation

Free Flow Power Corporation, a developer of clean renewable energy, welcomes the addition of Mr.Jonathan Dollard, P.E.to the company as aVice President of Engineering.

Mr. Dollard has more than 20 years of experience in hydropower industry. Mr. Dollard was responsible for the operation and maintenance of over 65 hydroelectric and other renewable energy generating projects across the United States during his preceding 14-year employment with Enel Green Power North America, Inc. (formerly CHI Energy, Inc.) Mr. Dollard also worked with Rivers Engineering and has completed various civil, structural and water resources analyses and designs. He has a B.S. in Civil Engineering from the University of New Hampshire.

Dan Irvin, CEO of Free Flow Power, commented, “We’re thrilled to have Jon leading our engineering team. We expect his experience in design, operation, and maintenance of utility-scale renewable energy facilities to enhance the value of our development pipeline.”

Mr. Dollard remarked, “ I look forward to working with FFP team who is clearly one of the leading hydropower development companies within the United States. It’s wonderful to join a team that has a common goal of economically developing renewable energy sites and I hope to share my past experiences with them to ensure success. ”

About Free Flow Power

Free Flow Power Corporation is a clean renewable energy company focusing on hydropower, hydrokinetic and hydro pumped storage projects as reliable, cost-effective sources of electricity and grid stability. Free Flow Power is developing a pipeline of over 150 projects representing potential capacity of more than 3,500 Megawatts in the US on behalf of investors, utilities, and electricity consumers.

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Indianapolis To Be Site Of Premier Green Building And Sustainability Conference In May 2012

The Indiana Chapter of the US Green Building Council (USGBC) is host for the 9th annual ‘Greening the Heartland’ Regional Conference (GTH2012) at the Indianapolis Convention Center from May 16th to 18th of this year. Over 1200 attendees from the 12 state Heartland Region are expected. Building industry professionals, business community leaders, nonprofit organizations, educators and students will be arriving in Indianapolis to collaborate on green building and sustainable growth. With a comprehensive format including keynote and break out education sessions, a large exhibit hall, along with various networking events, the 3 day program is anticipated to be one of the largest assemblies of green-minded professionals and citizens ever held in Indiana.

This year’s theme for GTH2012 Building Community is intended to emphasize the diversity of people, businesses, and municipalities coming together to share vision and solutions for sustainable Heartland communities in which to work, play, learn and live. The GTH2012 programming focus specifically explores the interdependent elements of true community sustainability as characterized by the conference tagline: watts, water, waste and wheels. “Whereas green building projects are ideal components of sustainable community design, their ultimate advantage relies on addressing critical pathways and infrastructure for clean energy, clean water, a sustainable means of arrival, and the efficient use of material resources while minimizing waste. GTH2012 attendees will gain a greater understanding of these concepts and similar environmental and economic trends of the maturing 21st century” said Mac Williams, Conference Co-Chair and Indiana Chapter Board member. The theme reflects bringing people together to share visions and solutions for sustainable communities in which we work, play, learn and live.

The conference brings nationally renowned keynote speakers Charles Fishman, journalist and author of ‘The Big Thirst’ and Jeremy Rifkin, economist/futurist and author of ‘The Third Industrial Revolution’. A final keynote presentation will feature the new Wishard/Eskenazi Health hospital project in Indianapolis now pursuing LEED® Silver certification making it one of the greenest hospital facilities in the nation. Multi track educational sessions featuring more than forty additional speakers offer continuing education units for interested professionals. USGBC Indiana is especially excited to hold this conference in downtown Indianapolis following the urban success story of SB2012. Plans are underway to feature some of the greening efforts of that event including the design of the SB Village and legacy projects. In addition, tour access and information will be presented on key LEED® certified buildings within Indianapolis. For more information, visit www.greeningtheheartland.org or email at info@greeningtheheartland.org.

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Green Mountain Signs Distribution Agreement with Solluxus for Bio-Miracle Products

Robert Brehm CEO of Green Mountain Development Corp (Pinksheet: GMND), announced that Green Mountain and Solluxus, LLC have signed a joint venture (JV) distribution agreement for a private label version of the company’s Bio-Miracle™ microbial products. Solluxus plans to market the microbial products with its non-GMO seeds to groups and individuals who want to preserve and protect the integrity of the food supply.

Under the terms of the agreement, Solluxus will have exclusive channel international marketing rights for Bio-Miracle™ products through its proprietary sales and marketing program and Green Mountain will provide fulfillment services for the Bio-Miracle™ and Solluxus products. Both companies will work together to develop and distribute related products for Solluxus including solar power, water treatment, and backyard and community food growing systems that empower individual and community self reliance. The three year renewable agreement provides for exclusive channel marketing rights in return for a $5MM product purchase commitment. Initial product deliveries are expected in the third quarter beginning April 1.

Brehm commented, “I have known the principal of Solluxus for over 20 years and when he invited me to participate, I was very excited to not only supply the Bio-Miracle™ products but also to be actively involved in the market development and product mix decision making. I believe our past experience in water treatment and the company’s microbial product line will be very useful in quickly ramping up Solluxus’ sales efforts to domestic and international customers. Our initial efforts will be in branding, packaging design, kitting, and setting up the internal operations for product fulfillment and customer support for deliveries beginning in the third quarter. The Solluxus relationship adds a new channel of distribution and potentially large, new customer base that augments our existing international channels for Bio-Miracle™ product distribution.”

About Green Mountain Development Corp

Green Mountain Development Corp provides project development services for capital providers and technology operators and distributes licensed products related to the energy, agricultural and environmental sectors.

About Solluxus
Solluxus is connecting like-minded people and groups to encourage strategies for protection of family, for self-reliance and for sustainability through delivery of non-GMO seeds and related products. (see www.Solluxus.com for more info or contact at 1-702-871-8535).

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Greenie Speed Dating Event Hosted by OC Green Market Saturday, February 11 at Irvine Valley College

OC Green Market, a division of Healthy Bargains, LLC, has announced it will host a Greenie Speed Dating event on Saturday, February 11, two days before Valentine’s Day, from 12-2 pm at Irvine Valley College. Each participant will meet 7 men or women with each conversation lasting 5 minutes. After the event participants will receive their matches through email.

“This is a great event to meet other people that care about the environment, work in the environmental field or live a green lifestyle like you do. And because it’s held outdoors in the middle of the day, the atmosphere is more casual than an evening event and you don’t have to get all dressed up! says organizer Rana Sabeh.

Tickets are $10 and can be purchased online at http://ocgreenmarketdating-auto.eventbrite.com/.

Green Saturdays @ OC Green Market is open once a month every Second Saturday from 9am – 2pm at Irvine Valley College. OC Green Market is the first of its kind in Orange County, CA to exclusively feature unique eco-friendly merchants. Having launched November 2011, it’s still small and growing and soon will offer a ‘one-stop shop’ of green products and services, holistic/alternative therapies and educational nonprofits.

Classes began January 14 and will continue monthly (except February) at every market date. Topics will be diverse but focused within green and healthy living. Fitness classes such as Yoga and Zumba will be added as well.

“I want to pull in people who don’t know about living green and educate them to see how it can fit into their lifestyle,” said Rana Sabeh, creator of OC Green Market.

“It’s an opportunity for them to understand that it’s a win-win for their health, families and for the environment, as well.”

Visit our website at http://www.ocgreenmarket.com/ or Facebook or Twitter.

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Green Schools App From The Co-operative Gains Five Star Feedback

The Co-operative Group’s revolutionary Green Schools app has made a strong start in Apple’s iTunes store since it was launched one week ago (Friday 9).

The game, which is compatible with the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, encourages kids, teens and adults to learn about green issues while battling to complete a number of different challenges and levels. The Green Schools app, which is available to download for free from iTunes, has already gained 27 ratings and has a current ranking of five stars out of five (correct at time of writing).

Feedback left by one gamer read: “Great game. Loads of fun. The kids are beating me!!!”

‘McrGiant’ wrote: “Love this app – nice game play and I can see it will be a great game for parents to get their kids to play AND learn stuff too. Well done.”

Others described the app as “fast & fun”, “fab green fun!” and “great educational app”.

So far the free app, which was launched as part of The Co-operative’s Green Schools Revolution has been downloaded 300 times and The Co-operative Group is really pleased with how well it is being received.

Melanie Phillips, who heads up Green Schools Revolution for The Co-operative Group, said: “We are really proud of the Green Schools app and it’s really nice to see that people love the game and are recommending it to their friends.

“When creating the design brief for this app we wanted to make sure that the games were primarily fun but that they also had a green twist, and we think this balance has been achieved really successfully.”

For those who want to download the free Green Schools Revolution game, it can be found on the App Store by searching ‘Green Schools’.

[ENDS]
Notes to editors:

1. The app is available to download free from the iTunes store by searching ‘Green Schools’.
2. Green Schools Revolution is a comprehensive learning resource prepared by education specialists and available to all UK primary and secondary schools for free.
3. Over 3,500 primary and secondary schools across the country are registered for Green Schools Revolution.
4. Registered schools have access to a range of free cross-curricular classroom resources and activities through www.greenschools.coop, giving young people and teachers the tools to inspire change in their schools, homes and local communities.
5. The Co-operative is offering schools free fun and educational visits to its own wind farm to see renewable energy in action and to seven Co-operative Farms to see first hand how food grows and how to cook it. Schools will be able to take advantage of free high visibility jackets to help set up “walking buses”, helping them take practical action to cut their carbon emissions.
6. The Co-operative’s Ethical Plan has 47 distinct targets, among them a cultural shift in youth perception and opportunities for young people through Green Schools Revolution, an Apprenticeship Academy and the creation of 200 Co-operative Schools by 2013.
7. As Britain’s largest farmer over 50,000 children have visited one of our 15 Co-operative Farms, gaining hands-on experience about where their food comes from.
8. The Co-operative Group is the UK’s largest mutual business, owned not by private shareholders but by over six million consumers. It is the UK’s fifth biggest food retailer, the leading convenience store operator and a major financial services provider, operating The Co-operative Bank, Britannia and The Co-operative Insurance.

Among its other businesses are the number one funeral services provider and Britain’s largest farming operation. As well as having clear financial and operational objectives, the Group has also set out its social and sustainability goals in its groundbreaking Ethical Plan, which specifies almost 50 commitments in these areas. The Group operates 4,800 retail trading outlets, employs more than 106,000 people and has an annual turnover of more than £13bn. Further information is available at www.co-operative.coop.

Via EPR Network
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New Green App For Eco-Gamers

The Co-operative Group releases innovative new children’s gaming app on Apple’s iTunes store!

From today (9 December), kids, teenagers and adults with an iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch can download the Green Schools app from iTunes and get tackling the addictive eco-tasks straightaway. By downloading the new Green Schools Revolution game, kids up and down the UK can battle it out to become the ultimate eco warrior.

According to a recent study by The Co-operative Group, over 90 per cent of children want to learn more about green issues* and this fun new app, being launched today, sets kids on a mission to become green revolutionaries.

By downloading the free app to their iPhone, iPad or iPod Touch, kids can race against time to harvest the carrots before the rabbit gets them, turn off the taps to save the duck in the bath tub and save energy by switching off lights whilst putting their green knowledge to the test to unlock the secret bonus level and become an eco warrior.

With fun quizzes about energy, water and healthy living, the app is a great way to learn important lessons while having loads of family fun this Christmas!

Melanie Phillips, who heads up Green Schools Revolution for The Co-operative, said: “We are lucky that our youngsters have such a tremendous appetite to learn more about green issues.

“Our new Green Schools Revolution app is a fun and engaging way to help children and young people learn about building a more sustainable world whilst competing with their friends and family to become eco warriors!”

The Co-operative’s Green Schools Revolution education programme, part of its Inspiring Young People campaign, was launched in 3,000 primary and secondary schools in September by farmer and TV presenter Jimmy Doherty. It has been designed to inspire the next generation of green pioneers, with free lessons, trips and green activities available to all UK primary and secondary schools.

You can download this exciting app, available on the iPhone, iPad and iPod Touch, from the iTunes store from today (9 December). Simply search the app store on iTunes for ‘green schools’ to download the game for free or visit the Green Schools Revolution site to find out more about the app and the initiative.

*Opinion Matters interviewed 1,027 children aged between 7 and 14 and 1,002 parents of children aged 7 to 14 in August 2011.

Via EPR Network
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How One Dollar Lights Up Africa

In the beginning there was light for all – and a little later there was electric light for, well, only some of us: 1.5 billion people still live in darkness. Dutch startup Off-Grid Solutions makes an end to developing countries’ killing kerosene dependency. They want their high-tech, low-cost WakaWaka solar LED lamp to light up Africa ‘like a Christmas tree’.

Via Kickstarter.com, the general public is now enthusiastically pre-ordering WakaWaka´s for 35 dollars each. The minimal support to contribute to their mission is one dollar. Thanks to this innovative way of crowdfunding, WakaWaka grows at the speed of light .And with it, the dream of providing all Africans with a sustainable light solution becomes more real by the minute.

1.5 billion people live off-grid. They depend on kerosene fuel for their basic lighting needs. Annually millions of children suffer severe burns from accidents with kerosene lamps. The toxic fumes cause even more health problems. World Bank reports that each day 780 million women and children inhale the equivalent of two packs of cigarettes as a result of indoor air pollution.

Fuels for lighting take up to 20% of income of people who try to survive on less than $2 a day. This way, the poor stay poor. But there is light at the end of the tunnel: WakaWaka solar LED light.

The WakaWaka (‘Shine Bright’ in Swahili) solar lamp uses the latest in patented solar technology developed by Intivation, allowing for superior charging in any weather conditions.

Each day of free solar charging gives 16 hours of decent reading light. It has different light intensities and fits on a bottle, stimulating recycling and opening up opportunities for joint promotions. Innovative distribution methods will reach even the most remote rural areas. Various accessories (cell phone chargers, radios, etc.) are already in development, which will further enhance livelihood and help people get out of poverty.

Co-founder Camille van Gestel: ‘I genuinely believe that if you can make a difference, you must. I have never done anything with so much passion. The support and inquiries we are receiving for WakaWaka from all over the world are as stimulating as they are heartwarming. We are doing the right thing.’

Let’s hope this new bright light spreads fast, for all and everybody. LED there be light.

http://www.kickstarter.com/projects/229055906/wakawaka-is-the-coolest-solar-led-light

http://www.wakawakalight.com

************************************************************************

About Off-Grid Solutions
Founded in 2011 by 4 partners: sustainable entrepreneur, inspirator and guru Maurits Groen, hands-on change maker and entrepreneur Camille van Gestel, carbon emissions consultants Do-Inc, experts emerging markets and finally Paul Naastepad seasoned executive in clean tech industry.

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7,000 Kids Join UK’s Biggest Ever School Trip

Energy, water and healthy living will be the highlight of the timetable for 7,000 school kids this week (7 – 11 November) as they join the UK’s biggest ever school trip to get a real taste of learning about sustainability outside the classroom.

At The Co-operative’s ‘Green Schools Revolution: LIVE!’ events up and down the country, all 7,000 pupils will get to visit one of eleven UK Science and Discovery Centres, including the Eden Project (Cornwall), the Royal Botanic Gardens Kew (London), Thinktank (Birmingham), Museum of Science and Industry (Manchester), W5 (Belfast), Satrosphere (Aberdeen) and Centre for Alternative Technology (CAT) (Wales) for a special Green Schools Revolution lesson.

During the week, each venue will bring unique experiences into the Green Schools Revolution programme, from pupils ascending 305 steps to the top of the world’s only climbable wind turbine at Ecotech in Norfolk, to exploring the importance of plants and the vital role they play in sustainable and healthy living at Kew Gardens.

Entry to the venues for all 7,000 children is fully funded by The Co-operative, with the first 100 schools to have registered also landing themselves subsidised coach travel.

According to research by The Co-operative, 92 per cent of children (aged 7-14) want to learn more about green issues, helping to save the environment and healthy living*, which are the key components of the Green Schools Revolution.

And parents are backing the initiative too with 87 per cent of them wanting their kids to learn more about green issues*. This could be down to the fact their own green knowledge is lacking – over half of parents are confused about what causes climate change*. Clearly educating their children has a much wider impact as parents are willing to learn from their kids with 95 per cent saying they have become greener as a result of their kids pester power*.

The Co-operative’s Green Schools Revolution education programme, part of its Inspiring Young People campaign, was launched in 3,000 primary and secondary schools in September by farmer and TV presenter Jimmy Doherty. It has been designed to inspire the next generation of green pioneers, with free lessons including recycling tips, trips and green activities and leisure ideas available to all UK primary and secondary schools.

Michael Fairclough, Head of Community and Campaigns, said: “We are lucky that our youngsters have such a tremendous appetite to learn more about green issues. Green Schools Revolution LIVE! will be the UK’s biggest ever school trip giving school children from all four corners of the UK the opportunity to visit their nearest Science and Discovery Centre for an inspirational school visit that will ensure the next generation are better equipped for the challenge of building a more sustainable world.”

Jean Miller, Head teacher of Hottsbridge Primary School in Waterbeck near Lockerbie, said: “This superb event will enable schools to build upon and develop important skills for our children to become creative, inventive and enterprising adults in a world where the skills and knowledge of the environment are needed across all sectors of the economy for a sustainable future.

“Green education is so important to us and this programme fits in perfectly, not only with our Science, Social Studies and Health and Wellbeing curriculum, but also with our overall school ethos and the School Improvement Plan. With the Co-operative’s strong environmental credentials behind Green Schools Revolution, we wanted to make sure we didn’t miss out on being part of this exciting programme.”

To find out more about Green Schools Revolution visit www.greenschools.coop. *Opinion Matters interviewed 1,027 children aged between 7 and 14 and 1,002 parents of children aged 7 – 14 in August 2011.

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The Co-operative Moves On Palm Oil

The Co-operative Group has become the largest UK supermarket to certify all of its palm oil use as sustainable.

The move by the consumer-owned retailer will help to protect endangered species, such as the orang-utan and the Sumatran tiger, as well as safeguard the future of smallholder farmers.

The retailer is purchasing accredited GreenPalm certificates from a co-operative of smallholders who are producing sustainable palm oil, accredited by the Roundtable on Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO).

The premium the smallholders receive helps them to build capacity for further production of sustainable palm oil.

Palm oil, which is used in modern food products, such as biscuits, pies and ready meals is one of the largest drivers of global deforestation, with Malaysia and Indonesia, which have some of the richest rainforests on the planet, accounting for 90% of production worldwide. These rainforests provide refuge for endangered species such as the orang-utan, the Sumatran tiger, elephants and rhinos. Further deforestation on Indonesian and Malaysian islands (Borneo, Sarawak and Sumatra) will push these species closer to extinction.

As part of its groundbreaking Ethical Plan launched earlier this year, The Co-operative committed to be a leading UK retailer on forest protection, and to move its palm oil sourcing to a sustainable footing by the end of 2011.

The retailer has achieved its target ahead of schedule, meaning that 4,729 tonnes of palm oil used annually will be certified as sustainable via one of the four certification systems agreed by the RSPO.

The Co-operative has also been working to increase the number of its own-brand products that contain fully traceable, certified sustainable palm oil, aiming to ensure all palm oil used as an ingredient in The Co-operative brand products come from this system by 2015. This move will further help customers of The Co-operative Food stores to make ethical and sustainable choices in store. It currently has 81 own-brand products that contain fully traceable, sustainable palm oil.

Sean Toal, Acting Chief Executive, The Co-operative Food, said: “Deforestation and the loss of natural habitat for the orang-utan and other endangered species are major issues, but, as a consumer-owned retailer, we are determined to play our part in supporting sustainable solutions.”

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Children Teaching Grown-Ups A Lesson Or Two About Green Issues

Children are resorting to “green pester power”, pushing their parents to act more sustainably – and their efforts are paying off, according to a new report published yesterday (20 September).

Half of parents say they struggle to answer their children’s questions about green issues – more than half for instance, incorrectly put the blame for climate change on carbon monoxide.

But six in ten say their children are persuading them to be greener, with recycling, conserving water and leaving the car at home among the things their offspring are asking them to do most often…and when they’re pressured, 95 per cent of them change their behaviour as a result.

The study is published by The Co-operative, to mark the official launch of its Green Schools Revolution (GSR) educational programme, which forms part of its groundbreaking Ethical Plan. The programme will meet the needs of information-hungry children, who rate green issues a close third in terms of learning priorities just behind Maths and English.

More than four in five parents believe their children learn more about the environment at school than they did – two in five say they were taught nothing about the issues at all.

The Co-operative Group says it has been “overwhelmed” by the pre-registration demand for the programme’s range of teaching materials from more than 2,500 primary and secondary schools across the UK, caring for over one million children.

Paul Monaghan, Head of Sustainability at the Co-operative Group said: “We are lucky that our youngsters have such a tremendous appetite to learn more about green issues and make a difference.

“Through our Green Schools Revolution programme, we hope to do our bit to help the thousands of switched on teachers who want to ensure the next generation are better equipped for the challenge of building a more sustainable world. However, parents aren’t off the hook – clearly they need extra homework and the programme will put children in a good position to teach them.”

Farmer and television presenter, Jimmy Doherty is launching the programme with the help of schoolchildren at a London primary school. He said: “As a parent, a farmer, and an enthusiastic advocate of sustainable living, I think it is vitally important to educate our children about green issues from an early age. I’ve been passionate about the environment since I was a teenager, but back then there was little information around to inspire others to change, so I’m delighted to see that The Co-operative is launching its Green Schools Revolution programme, which offers so much to encourage children to consider their environmental impact as second nature.”

From today, all GSR schools across the country will have access to a wide range of free cross-curricular classroom resources and activities through www.greenschools.coop, giving young people and teachers the tools to inspire change in their schools, homes and local communities.

The Co-operative is offering schools free fun and educational visits to its own wind farm to see renewable energy in action and to seven Co-operative Farms to see firsthand how food grows and how to cook it. Schools will be able to take advantage of free high visibility jackets to help set up “walking buses” for pupils, helping both schools and parents to take practical action to cut their carbon emissions.

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Award Win Highlights Slingsby’s Green Credentials

BAILDON based industrial and commercial equipment supplier, Slingsby, has seen off competition from across the region to win Business in the Community’s (BITC) Yorkshire and Humber Long Term Environmental Improvement Award.

The company was joint winner with Hallmark Cards and had its environmental performance in key areas benchmarked against a wide range of other leading businesses throughout Yorkshire and the Humber. The companies that displayed the most consistent year-on-year improvements over the last three years then made it through to the finals.

Dominic Slingsby, Managing Director of Slingsby explains: “We’re delighted to win this award. In recent years we have been firmly committed to reducing our environmental impact and we continually look at where and how further improvements can be made. We’ve installed high quality insulation throughout our premises, de-stratification fans that recirculate high level warm air, aluminium framed double glazed window units and we even reshape trees that block natural light.

“In addition we have recycling stations across our premises and use compactors that reduce the skips we need for waste and enable us to recycle approximately five tonnes of plastic each year. As well as the environmental benefits these initiatives also reduce costs which is good news for the company as a whole.”

Slingsby, which has more than 110 employees, supplies more than 35,000 workplace products across all industries through its catalogue, website and trade counter and has previously won BITC’s Carbon Reduction Award.

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New Generation Of Philips Ledino LED Lamps Brings Sustainable, Warm White Lighting To Your Home

LED (light emitting diode) lighting also known as SSL (solid state lighting) continues to evolve and Philips second generation of Ledino luminaires brings the latest high-power LED technology and elegant design to accent your style at home while at the same time reducing energy cost and supporting the environment.

Clear, warm white light can be dimmed at the touch of a button to change the mood of your space. A selection of the range even has the ability to be tuned from clear light to warm, when installed, allowing customers to adapt their lighting solution to their own needs.

“People at home have their own style, reflected in their interior. With the beautiful, stylish Ledino range we are helping customers create a beautiful light effect matching their style and home environment.”, said Allard Bijlsma, CEO Philips Consumer Luminaires.

Thanks to advanced LED technology the Ledino range uses up to 80% less energy than traditional lighting with an operational lifespan of up to 20 years. That makes Ledino good for the environment as well as your wallet. Another benefit of LED technology is instant start-up with full light output. Given that LED lamps contain no hazardous materials such as mercury, and do not generate UV or IR rays, this make them the ideal sustainable lighting solution too.

“The new Ledino range builds further on its innovation legacy through combining elegant minimalist design with a state-of-the-art LEDs by Lumileds that can reach a colour temperature of 2700 Kelvin. This major enhancement in Ledino LED lamps provide a warmer light with light yellow tint effect to create a more homely cosy atmosphere.” asserts Peter English, Managing Director, LEDVISTA.

LEDVISTA is proud to provide the current full ranges of both Ledino Indoor and Ledino Outdoor luminaires. Visit the LEDVISTA On-line LED Lighting Shop to learn more and get access to compelling price discount.

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