Thursday, September 21, 2017

Top 50 Green Universities in the UK

UK universities are among the top performing sustainability focused institutions in the world. According to the Universitas Indonesia (UI) GreenMetric World University Ranking 8 of the top 50 green universities are in the UK. The ranking places University of Nottingham as the second greenest university in the world, after University of California Davis. Moreover, 5 spots out of the first 10 are awarded to British universities. The complete list includes a total of 150 universities in the UK. In the UK Nottingham Trent University came in first with a score of 76,20 percent, followed by University of Brighton with a score of 74,80 percent.

The map below, shows UK’s top 50 Green Universities and their most notable sustainable projects.  The map includes the total score of People and Planet, the university’s achievements in carbon and waste reduction, plus an additional example of a notable initiative or project the university has implemented.

Wednesday, September 20, 2017

Complete World University Rankings of Green Schools

The Universitas Indonesia (UI) GreenMetric World University Ranking assesses green campuses and sustainability in schools. In response to student demand schools are increasingly focusing on sustainability. Universities all over the world have voluntarily implemented ISO 14001.  The ranking system seeks to promote sustainability focused school policies and behaviors. That includes things like sustainable building design, renewable energy, water bottle reuse, and locally produced food.  The six criteria are:

Tuesday, September 19, 2017

GRI and SDG Certified Training Courses

Certified training courses on the GRI Standards and the SDGs will take place in Minneapolis, MN on October 19-20, 2017 and in Denver, CO on November 16-17, 2017.  Other upcoming certified training courses will be held in San Francisco, Lagos, Nigeria, New York, San Diego and Nairobi, Kenya

The GRI Certified training content will review the transition from GRI G4 to the new GRI Standards. Participants will learn how to use the new GRI Standards including how to manage the reporting process, assess an organization’s significant impacts, select report topics and performance measures, and follow best practices for developing top-quality sustainability reports.

Monday, September 18, 2017

Online Sustainability Summit - Doing Business Doing Good

The first global free online sustainability summit is live for 1 month. Titled the Doing Business Doing Good this summit will show you how to use your business to make a positive impact for a better and more sustainable world. Join the 1630 people who have already registered.

Sunday, September 17, 2017

Event - Sustainable Business Summit: Toronto

This Bloomberg event will take place on September 27, 2017, 1:00 PM - 6:00 PM. It will take place at the Art Gallery of Ontario Baillie Court, 317 Dundas St W., Toronto, Ontario.

The Sustainable Business Summit 2016 leveraged Bloomberg’s unrivaled business and markets expertise to convene conversations uniquely focused on the role and opportunities of corporate executives and innovative investors.

The Toronto 2017 conference will discuss global stakes from a uniquely Canadian perspective. Subjects will include:

Saturday, September 16, 2017

Climate Communications and Human Psychology (Video)

We must acknowledge that facts alone are insufficient to augur widespread climate action. The Trump administration's disdain for facts highlight the importance of a science-based understanding of climate change. However, the Trump administration is not the biggest impediment to climate action. They are merely taking advantage of human psychology.

Narratives bassed exclusively on facts make people feel both afraid and guilty. Rather than motivating us to act fear causes apathy, avoidance and passivity.  We need messaging that is both clear and concise. We also need narratives that reflect the propensities of the human psyche.

Friday, September 15, 2017

Business School Sustainability Fail

Research suggests that business schools are not adequately preparing students to meet the challenges of climate change. Sustainability-focused pedagogy is rare. Even rarer are schools that teach science-based sustainability strategies.

As the primary drivers of climate change, the role of the business community is crucial. Business and industry are the largest contributors of greenhouse gases that are driving climate change. According to some estimates, this translates to a 6 percent for buildings and 25 percent for electricity production.

Thursday, September 14, 2017

Paper Reduction Programs in Schools

In an effort to minimize their environmental footprints a large number of schools are getting involved in paper reduction projects. This is an important issue for institutions of learning as they are responsible for a larger than average share of global paper consumption.

Paper production comes at a very high environmental cost, it is also a major source of climate change causing greenhouse gases. Paper is resource intensive requiring large quanties of trees and water. Paper is not only a major contributor to deforestation and drought it is also a leading source of pollution.

Tuesday, September 12, 2017

US Hurricanes and the GOP's Climate Denial

The string of Hurricanes that devastated parts of the Caribbean and the US South East in 2017 make it harder for deniers to dismiss climate change. The US has been hit by a number of dramatic storms in recent years. This includes Hurricanes Katrina, Sandy and Matthew. Now Harvey and Irma join the list of record breaking storms that have ravaged the US.

It would be reckless to say that climate change is solely responsible for any one hurricane or any one extreme weather event. However, it is fair to say that extreme weather offers a powerful teaching moment. Because climate change can be hard to visualize, hurricanes provide a unique opportunity to help people understand the dynamics at play. Such storms kill people and destroy both homes and livelihoods. This dramatically demonstrates the impacts of global warming.

Monday, September 11, 2017

Event - Sustainable Innovation Forum 2017 (SIF17)

The 8th SIF17 will take place on the 13th and 14th of November 2017 in Bonn, Germany. This year this event will be taking place on the lawn of the Deutsche Post DHL Group Post Tower, only steps away from the COP23. Because the Forum will not be located within the Blue Zone, (the location of the official COP23 negotiations), attendees will not require a special UNFCCC accreditation to access SIF17. The Forum is organized by Climate Action and UN Environment Program and it is the largest business focused event alongside UNFCCC COP23.

Sunday, September 10, 2017

Event - Green Building: Occupant Wellbeing: Designing Healthy, Effective Workplaces

This green building breakfast series event will take place on Tuesday September 12, 2017, 7:30 am - 9:30 am at Territories Room, Fairmont Royal York Hotel, 100 Front St West, Toronto, Ontario. This event will address ways of designing and building healthy and effective collaborative workspaces that exceed basic standards.

Saturday, September 9, 2017

Sustainability Focused Education Auckland University (Video)

The University of Auckland Business School has a sustainability program and the school's Faculty of Science Sustainability Network partners with the UofA's commitment to sound environmental performance as part of their Strategic Plan 2013-2020. This includes objectives to make more efficient use of resources and enhance their overall environmental performance.

The Faculty of Science Sustainability Network aims to facilitate sustainability-oriented initiatives, model sustainable practices and increase the internal and external visibility of sustainability-oriented activities in the Faculty of Science.

Advocacy in International Affairs from IHEID (Video)

The Graduate Institute of International and Development Studies (IHEID) is offering English language studies designed to help students to develop the skills they need to influence the global agenda. The title of the course of study is "Advocacy in International Affairs".

Thursday, September 7, 2017

Trump's Climate Denial the GOP and Fossil Fuels

Donald Trump came to power riding a wave of climate denial generated by the the fossil fuel industry and their minions in the GOP.  Part of the standard denial strategy involves discrediting the body of evidence supporting anthropogenic climate change.

Deniers use clever arguments to make their ignorance seem more plausible. Although there are a number of arguments related to climate action that should resonate with Republicans, thus far they  have fallen on deaf ears.

Wednesday, September 6, 2017

UI GreenMetric World University Ranking

For the last seven years the Universitas Indonesia has been ranking institutions of higher learning in terms of sustainability. The ranking is called the UI GreenMetric World University Ranking.

The idea of this ranking system was born out of a 2009 conference hosted by the school. The "International Conference on World University Rankings" addressed the fact that many school rankings failed to include carbon reduction efforts.

Tuesday, September 5, 2017

Feedback Loop Between Extreme Weather and Fossil Fuels Makes the Case for Clean Energy

As clean energy continues to grow storms continue to highlight the dangers of oil and gas. Fossil fuels and storms are locked in a perilous relationship that sees each contribute to the destructive force of the other. Extreme weather events have repeatedly ravaged Texas oil infrastructure.

Storms wreak havoc with both the economy and the environment. Preliminary estimates put the economic cost of Hurricane Harvey at $190 billion, making it the costliest natural disaster in US history. There are also costs in the fossil fuel sector associated with Hurricane Harvey passing right through the hub of the US petroleum and natural gas industries in southeast Texas.

Sunday, September 3, 2017

Event - World Environmental Education Congress

World Environmental Education Congress (WEEC) 2017, will take place Sept 9 - 15 in Vancouver, BC. The 9th WEEC (World Environmental Education Congress) will be held in Vancouver, Canada, September 9-15, 2017. The title of the Congress is CulturEnvironment: Weaving new connections.

Event - SFI Annual Conference 2017

This conference will take place on September 27-29, 2017 in Ottawa, Canada. The SFI Annual Conference brings together thought leaders and influencers from the forest sector, conservation and community partners, tribal and indigenous leaders as well as some of the most engaged forest product customers in North America. This year’s conference theme – Forests. A Way of Life – will highlight how we all depend on forests whether we are harvesting professionals, landowners, producers, customers, Indigenous peoples, or individuals using forests for recreation. To enjoy our shared quality of life, we need to ensure our forests are responsibly managed, so we have clean air, clean water, biodiversity, sustainable communities and forest products that improve our quality of life.

Thursday, August 31, 2017

Hurricane Harvey and Trump's Hypocritical Resistance to Climate Resilience

Hurricane Harvey is a clarion call to climate deniers like Donald Trump. Extreme weather is one of the hallmarks of a world ravaged by climate change. Severe storms and catastrophic flooding illustrate the dangers of global warming more graphically than any research ever could. 

Hurricane Harvey now ranks as the worst rainstorm in US history. The storm saw winds as strong as 132 mph and some of the largest downpours ever recorded. It should be noted that this extreme rainfall is clearly consistent with climate models. One of the cities hit hardest was Houston, where heavy downpours have increased 167 percent since the 1950s.

Hurricane Harvey and the State of Climate Science

Storms are complex phenomena but we can say with a good degree of certainty that Hurricane Harvey and other extreme weather events are exacerbated by global warming.

Hurricane Harvey is the most powerful hurricane to hit Texas in more than half a century. It smashed into the coast of Texas on Friday as a Category 4 hurricane. It then dumped over a meter of rain submerging streets, homes and vehicles. Thousands of people were stranded on rooftops in scenes reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina. In addition to widespread property damage Harvey is known to have killed at least 14 people and almost seven million people have been affected.

Tuesday, August 29, 2017

15 Greenest US Colleges & Universities (2017) has named the top 15 US colleges and universities in 2017 based upon AASHE's ratings. Each year the Association for the Advancement of Sustainability in Higher Education (AASHE) creates a list of green schools that have engaged in successful eco-initiatives on-campus and within their surrounding communities.

AASHE's list of green schools is consistent with their efforts to coordinate and strengthen campus sustainability efforts. Although this list is not endorsed by AASHE, it does rely on the organization's STARS ratings which spotlights schools that have launched the most impactful initiatives to reduce on-campus waste and energy consumption, promote alternative transportation, provide funding to student and faculty-led green proposals, and take other measures that benefit the environment.

Hurricane Harvey and the State of Climate Science

Storms are complex phenomena but we can say with a good degree of certainty that Hurricane Harvey and other extreme weather events are exacerbated by global warming.

Hurricane Harvey is the most powerful hurricane to hit Texas in more than half a century. It smashed into the coast of Texas on Friday as a Category 4 hurricane. It then dumped over a meter of rain submerging streets, homes and vehicles. Thousands of people were stranded on rooftops in scenes reminiscent of Hurricane Katrina. In addition to widespread property damage Harvey is known to have killed at least 14 people and almost seven million people have been affected.

Monday, August 28, 2017

Bannon has Left the White House but his Influence Remains

Steve Bannon may be out of the White House but a paint by numbers version of his ideology has been grafted onto the brain of the US Commander and Chief. Bannon's insane ideology will endure in the Executive branch as long as Trump remains in office.

Bannon was advising Trump well before becoming a formal adviser on August 17, 2016. Bannon cemented his relationship with Trump in the 2016 election. He earned himself a senior position in the Trump administration because he is the matchmaker who delivered the alt-right vote. Trump cannot eschew the alt-right because he is so widely reviled outside of this group that he really has nowhere else to turn. Without the alt-right Trump's support could plunge to single digits.

Sunday, August 27, 2017

Webinar - Rise of the Philanthropreneur (Class)

This webinar will take place on Monday, September 4th 2017. The webinar will explain a new kind of education that gives you the tools to be a philanthropreneur. This free online class is focused on impact the very thing that millennials are having trouble finding in the work environments of today. The class will also focus on building a movement that allows you to live a life of wisdom, adventure, and profit.

Saturday, August 26, 2017

Al Gore on Climate Action and Trump's Denial (Videos)

Former Vice President and climate crusader Al Gore was initially non-committal about Donald Trump.  Gore met with Trump in December last year and many hoped that he would be able to explain the science, economics and politics of climate change to the then president-elect.

In January, Gore was part of a panel moderated by Amy Goodman at the Sundance Film Festival. In this interview Gore indicated that he was still waiting to see what the the Trump administration does on the climate front. Gore was more forthcoming in his assessment of Trump's Secretary of State, the former CEO of Exxon, Rex Tillerson.

Friday, August 25, 2017

Energize Schools Energy Conservation Competition

The Energize Schools Energy Conservation Competition is a three-week challenge that gives schools in Southern California the chance to compete for prizes by reducing their energy usage. Since 2014 Energize Schools has worked with Energy and Facilities Managers to help Southern California schools reduce their energy by 391,383 kWh saving $58,883 and slashing 192,884 lbs. of CO2.

Responsible Business : The Rapid Growth of the B Corps

Business that are forces for good also see bottom-line benefits. This is not only about seeing value, or even securing a competitive advantage, this is a matter of survival. The number of companies with a social conscience has been steadily growing. This is exemplified by the growth of B Corps certified companies that are investing in environmental sustainability and focusing on workers’ rights. Since 2007 tens of thousands of companies have earned B Corp certification this includes SMEs and well-known brands like the internet sensation Kickstarter and outdoor clothing giant Patagonia.

Thursday, August 24, 2017

Corporate Environmental Financial Disclosure Tool

The current corporate reporting trend is a critical aspect of sustainability. Investors are increasingly demanding more detailed information to assess material risks and make sound investment decisions. We have seen a number of shareholder actions that demonstrate the changing landscape. Public disclosures, particularly as the relate to the environment and the climate demonstrate responsible corporate conduct. This trend growing in the US and around the world.

New York Certified Sustainability Practitioner Trainings

The next Certified Sustainability Practitioner Training will take place on September 28-29, 2017 in New York City. Attendees of the training will walk away with The latest updates and key concepts on corporate sustainability including GHG emissions, GRI reporting, stakeholder engagement, and best practices.

Tuesday, August 22, 2017

Sharing Sustainability Matters Now More than Ever

Sustainability may be the most important strategy we have to build a better world. The business community has the power to transform society and never before have they been more important. The world needs the business community to lead efforts to combat climate change and promote social justice.

A growing number of businesses are championing sustainability and engaging in responsible corporate conduct. As demonstrated recently by corporate America this is about far more than just a marketing angle, this is about both moral stewardship and the bottom line.

Monday, August 21, 2017

Training - Toronto Certified Sustainability Practitioner

Certified Sustainability Practitioner Training will take place on October 26-27, 2017 in Toronto, Ontario, Canada. This globally recognized CSR-P Certification will cover best practices and enable participants to create a two-year sustainability plan for integrating sustainability across their organization’s value chain.  The training is offered by the only global sustainability training firm with CMI global professional certification for corporate sustainability.

Sunday, August 20, 2017

Event - Yale Sustainability Leadership Forum

This event will take place on September 12 - 15. Are you and your company on top of the megatrends in sustainability? The Yale Sustainability Leadership Forum is an intense program exploring sustainability as an overarching framework for life in the 21st century. An integrated policy concept, sustainability diverges from approaches to environmental protection and economic development that were pursued in the 20th century.

Friday, August 18, 2017

Corporate America Fires Trump for Deriliction of Duty

An unprecedented number of American business leaders have come out to oppose Trump. Waves of resignations from the CEOs of America's leading corporations have forced Trump to disband his business councils.

Large numbers of companies have issued statements and internal memos condemning Trump. Ford, Microsoft, Goldman Sachs, Coca-Cola, have all spoken out against this administration. To protest Trump's egress from the Paris Climate Agreement more than two dozen major businesses took out full-page ads.

Tuesday, August 15, 2017

CEOs Condemn Trump in the Wake of the Nazi Terror Attack in Charlottesville

The business community is railing against Trump's horrifying response to the Charlottesville terror attack. Corporate leaders are stepping up to challenge Trump in the wake of his failure to condemn the murderous rampage of white nationalists. Businesses are overtly refuting Trump's narrative and championing both diversity and inclusion. So far more than a half dozen CEOs have publicly resigned from their positions as presidential advisors. Trump initially refused to single out the racist groups that took part in the alt-right rally in Charlottesville and he did not condemn the hateful beliefs of white supremacists. Trump also conspicuously failed to mention the neo-nazi that murdered Heather Heyer and injured 19 others.

Monday, August 14, 2017

The Charlottesville Terrorist Attack: Trump and his Alt-Right

The fact that neo-nazi Trump supporters have committed a murderous act of terrorism should come as no surprise. Trump has pandered to the alt-right movement that includes many neo-nazis and white supremacists. They not only helped to get him elected they form the militant core of his base.

On Friday August 11, neo-nazis held a torch-wielding protest at the University of Virginia in Charlottesville. As they marched through the campus they screamed hate speech and hurled racial insults. This was followed on Saturday August 12 with a white supremacist rally where a neo-nazi terrorist attack killed one and injured more than a dozen others.

Sunday, August 13, 2017

Event - World Design Summit of International Organizations

The first World Design Summit of International Organizations will take place October 23-25, 2017 in Montreal, Canada.

Great design can transform the world and this summit will be an unprecedented moment of global unity focused on design-driven solutions. This summit will create an international action plan for solving global issues through design. Designing for the future is a 10-year, design-driven international action plan for creating a world that is environmentally sustainable, economically viable, socially equitable and culturally diverse.

The world is facing complex challenges and the more complex the problem, the more the need for synthesis. The power in Design is the power of synthesis. The road to convergence has been forged by focusing on that which is common between the disciplines and on the shared desire to strategically actuate the unique capacity of design to address pressing global needs.  

Event - Sustainable Innovation Forum

The 8th annual Sustainable Innovation Forum will take place on November 13-14, in Bonn, Germany. As explained by Erik Solheim, the Executive Director of UN Environment: "We need to prove that protecting the environment is profitable and in everyone's best interests. We can do this by holding up successful examples."

Friday, August 11, 2017

Businesses Support Sustainability and Oppose Trump

Trump may be an impediment to climate action from the federal government but he cannot stop the growth of sustainability in the US. Market forces have made sustainability a mainstream phenomenon. Paradoxically the Trump administration's rejection of responsible climate policies may have increased climate action and activism from the business community.

The acknowledgement of the veracity of climate change is widespread. In addition to the scientific consensus and corporate leadership all branches of the US military and most economists agree that climate change is a significant threat.

Thursday, August 10, 2017

ebook - Renewable energy: Understanding the Basics from the University of Calgary

If you are curious about clean power check out this ebook from the University of Calgary.  This free introductory level ebook on renewable energy is titled Renewable energy: Understanding the basics.

Currently, the world gets most of its power from burning hydrocarbons, or fossil fuels. But renewable energy sources, such as solar, wind and hydro, are becoming more and more widespread.

In this ebook, you'll learn about the basics of renewable energy, some of the advantages of different types of renewable energy sources, and how adopting cleaner energy benefits us all in the long run.

 Click here to download Renewable energy: Understanding the basics.

Make sure to see the article titled, "Comprehensive Green School Information and Resources." It contains links to over 350 posts covering everything you need to know about sustainable academics, green school buildings, student eco-initiatives, and college rankings as well as a wide range of related information and resources.

Wednesday, August 9, 2017

10 Things Corporations Can Do to Combat Climate Change

There are a number of things that corporations can do to limit global warming. Never before has corporate leadership been more important. Never before have the stakes been so high and never before have the potential returns been as large.

Corporations must play a leadership role in the effort to keep temperatures from exceeding the upper threshold limits (1.5°C-2°C above preindustrial norms).