Latest Blogs

1 hour 56 min ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - There’s an old saying that goes, “when you’re up to your neck in alligators, it’s a little late to think about draining the swamp.” It could certainly apply to farmers in California right now, who are up to their neck (so to speak) in a historic drought. They are struggling and making difficult choices as to which crops they can continue to raise, as homeowners and municipalities learn to change their habits and their landscaping.

But as we have learned about climate change, there will be many more droughts, even more severe than this one, if something isn’t done to address the root cause. Which is where the new announcement from USDA comes in. Farmers contribute roughly 9% to overall greenhouse gas (GHG) emissions—though, when it comes to methane, a gas 25 times more potent than CO2 in its effect on the atmosphere—that number goes up to 40 per cent. This new plan is another piece of President Obama’s effort to address the problem in a comprehensive manner, in each major area that it presents itself.

Despite what detractors say, this can be done, in this segment as in others, while improving the economic bottom line. Some level of capital investment might be required to make the transition, which is where the government incentives come in.

4 hours 33 min ago

(3BL Media/Just Means) - Arbor Day is upon us (last Friday in April) and it’s time to talk about and celebrate trees. One of nature’s most awe-inspiring wonders, trees are natural monuments that give us oxygen, shelter life, produce water and keep soil together. They are, in a way, the guardians of the planet’s soul.

1 day 21 hours ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Last week, Justmeans reported on the news that Etsy, the online seller of artisan goods, a business that aims to balance profits with a social mission, was valued at $1.78 billion, after launching an IPO this month on NASDAQ.

1 day 22 hours ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – While many brides are preparing for their big day, there are some weddings that should not be going ahead, and that’s child marriages. No girl should be robbed of her childhood, education, health and aspirations, yet millions are denied their rights each year when they are married as child brides.

2 days 14 hours ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Venture Capital has a vital role to play in the promotion of innovative green companies. Traditionally, venture capitalists have been willing to put money behind cutting edge technologies emerging in fields such as renewables, biofuels, batteries, sustainable foods, and clean water. To speed the growth of promising sustainable companies, funding is the most critical requirement.

3 days 19 hours ago

Guest Blog by Bill Shireman and Kellen Klein, Future 500

As today’s products grow increasingly varied and complex, so too does the stakeholder network calling on companies to reduce the negative impacts of the widgets they produce. The past two years have seen a particularly noticeable increase in domestic stakeholder activity around waste, recycling and packaging.

3 days 23 hours ago

(3BL Media/Just Means) - Why cycle to work? There are several good reasons​ to embrace two-wheeled transportation​. For one, it is healthy: aerobic exercise is good for the heart and it improves our resistance and overall fitness. Second, streets are jammed! Fewer cars on the road means less stress and more room to move.

4 days 3 hours ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) - James Hansen came to Rochester, NY to give the keynote address at the Sierra Club’s Annual Forum. The title of his talk was “Climate Change and Energy: How Can Young People Take Ownership of Their Future?” It was the culmination of several talks he had given while in town.

Not surprisingly, Hansen began by talking about how last year was the warmest on record and how based on the data recorded so far, this year is well on its way to being warmer. He described the many sources of data corroborating the phenomenon like GRACE satellite data that shows Greenland and Antarctica rapidly losing mass, and the 3,200 Argo floats that have been sampling temperatures in the top 2 km of the ocean. These show the increase in ocean temperature. Though we have had a “pause,” for about a decade, in which the rate of cooling had declined, the recent data shows the resumption of the earlier trend. The pause has been explained by Drew Shindell (a former colleague of Hansen’s) as being due to the short term impact of aerosols, among the explanations that have been put forward.

Hansen’s biggest concerns going forward are two irreversible trends. The first is the extinction of species, the rate of which is estimated to take out anywhere from 25 to 50 per cent of all species living on Earth today, by the end of the century. While climate change is not the only factor driving these extinctions, it exacerbates many of the other stresses, such as loss of habitat and chemical pollutions, which are also primarily human induced.

The second concern is disintegration of the great ice sheets. New satellite data confirms that the ice sheets of Greenland and Antarctica are losing mass at an accelerating pace. In the case of Western Antarctica, that rate of ice loss has been increasing by 25 billion tons per year per year.

He described a newly discovered positive feedback loop to add to the albedo loss, and the release of methane from melting permafrost. This one has to do with the circumpolar circulation of water in the ocean. As the glaciers melt and discharge large amounts of fresh water into the ocean it cause the cold water to sink more slowly which has the effect of causing sea ice to expand. This, in turn, releases heat that is melting the ice shelves that act as buttresses to the great ice sheets. Should the ice sheets disintegrate, ocean levels will rise by huge amounts. Even if temperatures are maintained at the 2 degrees C mark that the IPCC is currently targeting, we could still see sea levels 5-9 meters above their current levels, enough to wipe out virtually all coastal cities.

5 days 50 min ago

(3BL Media/Just Means) - Like many consumers, I worry about what happens to the clothes I buy when ​I wear them out or just get tired of them​​​. Granted, we can donate them to second hand shops, or even pass them down to family members who enjoy a bit of vintage style.

5 days 11 hours ago

(3BL Media/Justmeans) – Companies that get involved with the community stand apart from their competitors, and reap dividends over time in terms of loyal customers and happier employees. A business does not operate in a vacuum. The citizens and groups that live within a company’s local operating regions are vital to its existence. The workers too are a part of the community and in many cases grew up there.