Category Archives: Environment

Power Down for Earth Hour March 28

CHICAGO–(BUSINESS WIRE)–In celebration of Earth Hour, ComEd is reminding its customers to power down for the hour, Saturday, March 28 from 8:30 – 9:30 p.m., and join millions across the world in this global effort. Earth Hour is the world’s largest annual voluntary environmental action event to raise awareness about climate change. ComEd will be turning off nonessential lights at its office facilities across northern Illinois to mark Earth Hour.

In addition to turning off lights during Earth Hour, ComEd customers can take a number of steps to save energy and money and the environment year round through the ComEd Smart Ideas Energy Efficiency Program, including:

  • Set the thermostat up to 10 degrees higher during the summer, and up
    to 10 degrees lower during the winter, when you leave your home and
    before going to sleep. You could save up to 15 percent a year on
    heating and cooling costs.
  • Check the HVAC filter every month. If the filter looks dirty after a
    month, change it. A dirty filter will slow down air flow and make the
    system work harder thus wasting energy.
  • Inspect the caulking and weather-stripping around all windows, doors
    and openings, replacing as necessary. Also, check your ductwork for
    leakage to minimize energy lost. Sealing and insulating ducts can
    improve the efficiency of your heating and cooling system by as much
    as 20 percent.

And before customers turn their lights back on, it’s a great time to change out old energy-wasting incandescent light bulbs with new CFLs (compact fluorescent lamp) or LEDs (light emitting diode), which typically use about 75 percent less energy. CFLs also last about 10 times longer, while LEDs last about 25 times longer. The ComEd Smart Ideas® Energy Efficiency Program provides instant in-store discounts on select ENERGY STAR® certified CFLs and LEDs. Look for the ComEd “Lower Price” sticker to save on a variety of energy-efficient light bulbs at participating retail stores. Continue reading

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The Secret Ingredient for a Great Cup of Coffee

There are definitely some myths out there about sustainable products, and to be blunt, how good they are. Some people wonder whether something so focused on its mission can look great, taste great, feel great. (Apparently locally-grown wheat grass smoothies, raw yeast balls and sandpaper hemp pants don’t float everyone’s boat.) As it turns out, in the coffee world, sustainability not only goes hand-in-hand with quality, they’re integrally linked. And Fair Trade has become an important vehicle for helping farmers improve crop quality and build strong relationships with quality-forward buyers. In fact, today nearly 100% of Fair Trade Certified coffees are specialty grade.

Sorry to turn your world upside down, but it’s true: sustainable practices and thriving farmers are the secret ingredients to your mind-blowingly delicious cup of joe. Here are a few reasons why: Continue reading

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Cox Celebrates World Water Day with Ocean Conservancy Partnership

Today is World Water Day, and Cox is proud of our partnership with Ocean Conservancy. In 2014, Cox employees cleaned up shorelines at Miami’s Key BiscayneOrange County’s Doheny State Beach, Seattle’s Puget Sound and Wantagh’s Jones Beach. We’re looking forward to more great volunteer events with Ocean Conservancy this year.

Learn more about our partnership in the video.

About Cox Conserves:

Launched in 2007 by Chairman Jim Kennedy, Cox Conserves is Cox Enterprises’ national sustainability program. Cox Conserves focuses on reducing waste and energy consumption, as well as conserving water. The program engages each of the company’s major subsidiaries (Cox Communications, Cox Automotive and Cox Media Group) and encourages Cox Enterprises’ 50,000 employees and their families to engage in eco-friendly practices. Continue reading

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Unilever Releases Infographics to Demonstrate the Interlinkages Between Water and Sanitation

Unilever believes that water and sanitation is key to sustainable, inclusive development and should be a central part of the new UN global goal framework.

A strong, integrated water and sanitation goal will drive progress across the whole spectrum of economic, environmental and social SDGs – delivering a better future for the planet and all of its people.

Working with UN-Water, WaterAid, Global Citizen and the World Bank – Unilever has developed two infographics that demonstrate how Goal 6 (Water and Sanitation) underpins progress across all the other development goals and targets.

As UN member states enter their final negotiations on the sustainable development goal framework, please share these infographics to build support for a comprehensive, interconnected water and sanitation goal that can truly deliver transformational change. Continue reading

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Humana Sets Three-Year Goal For Carbon Footprint Reduction

LOUISVILLE, Ky.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Humana Inc. (NYSE: HUM) today participated in an event at the White House during which several large federal contractors announced commitments to reduce their carbon footprints in 2015 and beyond. Humana announced its goal to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by five (5) percent through 2017, from a 2013 baseline.

“As part of Humana’s Corporate Social Responsibility endeavors, we’ve been focused for several years now on Healthy Planet initiatives intended to reduce energy and emissions,” said Tim Huval, Humana’s Chief Human Resources Officer. “We recognize the impact greenhouse gas emissions have on our global climate, and our associates at Humana are deeply committed to doing everything we can to reduce the company’s environmental impact.”

Humana previously set and achieved goals related to energy consumption and greenhouse gas emissions, in 2011-2012. During that period, the company reduced its energy consumption by eight (8) percent, and reduced greenhouse gas emissions by three (3) percent. In 2014, Humana announced a second generation of environmental goals focused on key owned and leased worksites, with a target date of the end of 2015. Today’s announcement represents a two-year extension of Humana’s work to continue reducing greenhouse gas emissions. Continue reading

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Climate Change and Its Toll on Latin America

Climate change is taking its toll everywhere on the planet. Its impact can be clearly seen in Latin America, which has sixty major cities situated along the coast where these urban areas are very vulnerable to rising sea levels. Plus, there are millions of people who depend on rivers fed by the Andean glaciers, yet face the extreme likelihood that their primary water source may disappear within the next 15 to 25 years.

The consequences of these changes are likely to be so great they will become one of the global community’s defining challenges. That’s why scientists, along with 200 leaders from across government agencies, private sector, academic organisations and civil society from Latin America, Central America, the Caribbean and the U.S came together recently for a two-day conference. They engaged to discuss the impacts of droughts and floods on urban water infrastructure and the urgent need for creating resilient cities. Top leaders from the Inter-American Development Bank, Organisation of American States and the U.S. State Department shared their insight and expertise. Continue reading

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What Happens After the Millennium Development Goals?

The Millennium Development Goals (MDGs) are eight broad goals with targets ranging from eradicating extreme poverty to halting the spread of HIV/AIDS and providing universal primary education, all by 2015. They form a blueprint agreed to by all the world’s countries and all leading development institutions. They have galvanized unprecedented efforts to meet the needs of the globe’s poorest populations. Now, the United Nations (UN) is working with governments, civil society and other partners to build on the momentum generated by these Goals to carry on with an ambitious post-2015 development agenda. The UN’s Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon says, “The Millennium Development Goals have been the greatest anti-poverty push in history. New partnerships have been established. New actors have been engaged. Now we must finish the job.” Continue reading

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Warranty Solutions®, a Wells Fargo Business, Donates a Million Trees

LAKEWOOD, Colo.–(BUSINESS WIRE)–As a part of an ongoing commitment to sustainability, Warranty Solutions®, a Wells Fargo & Company (NYSE: WFC) business, has donated one million trees through the Arbor Day Foundation® since the launch of its EcoMind® option in 2009.

A malfunctioning or poorly maintained vehicle can release as much as 10 times the emissions of a well-maintained one. To help address this carbon challenge, Warranty Solutions launched EcoMind in 2009 as an extended vehicle service product option designed to help consumers protect both their vehicles and the environment.

With each EcoMind option purchased from a participating dealer, Warranty Solutions makes a donation to the Arbor Day Foundation to purchase 25 trees. According to calculations using data from the U.S. Forest Department, donating one million trees is the environmental equivalent of removing 530,000 tons of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere. Continue reading

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