Saturday, June 30, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 10:46 PM
by Alex Morrison

20070622_electriccar.jpg

The dream of a silent, sustainable car is here at last. The ZENN, which stands for Zero Emission, No Noise, is destined to revolutionize the way we think about driving, offering for the first time a viable and relatively cheap alternative to petroleum-based vehicles. Earthtimes reports:

Headquartered in Toronto, Canada, ZENN Motor Company is dedicated to producing zero-emission transportation solutions for global markets, including the revolutionary ZENN, the perfect vehicle for urban commuters, fleets (such as resorts, gated communities, airports, college and business campuses, municipalities, parks and more), the environmentally conscious driver, and consumers who just want to save money. The ZENN is sold through a growing network of retailers across the United States.

The potential commercialization of the Electrical Energy Storage Units being developed by ZENN Motor Company strategic partner, EEStor Inc., in future ZENN vehicles will allow them to go as far and as fast as a traditional car at a fraction of the cost. Moreover, the ZENN electric vehicles will potentially have all of the benefits of an internal combustion vehicle without the harmful emissions, sensitivity to escalating gas prices, or noise pollution. This environmentally friendly alternative will help make the widespread concerns about oil dependency a thing of the past.

Sound amazing? We think so too.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 10:09 PM
On my way to happy hour drinks with friends, I had to cross the line of iPhone fanatics waiting in line to get the iPhone on opening day. Two were at the point of throwing puches. People take new electronics very seriously.

So should you. But you shouldn't throw punches--instead exert the mighty arm of consumer choice and only buy from companies with good sustainability ratings. On a related note, Apple moved up in the ranks this year. Green Peace has taken the guess work out by issuing their annual Guide to Greener Electronics--while my new digital alarmclock was not mentioned, here's how the electronics giants faired (from the Greenpeace website):

Our Green Electronics Guide ranks leading mobile and PC manufacturers on their global policies and practice on eliminating harmful chemicals and on taking responsibility for their products once they are discarded by consumers. Companies are ranked on information that is publicly available and communications/clarifications with the companies.

There have been three previous editions:

First Edition August 2006.
Second Edition December 2006.
Third Edition March 2007.

This edition was published June 27, 2007. See the Full Report here.




8
Nokia - Regained its top position for eliminating the worst chemicals from many products. Still needs to report on its recycling rate percentage. More

7.3 Dell - Still among the top but loses points for not having models free of the worst chemicals. Strong support for global takeback. More

7.3
Lenovo - Dropping down the rank for not having a clear global take back program. Still missing out on products free of the worst chemicals on the market. More

7
Sony Ericsson - Still among the top with clear timeline to have products free of the worst chemicals by 2008. Need better chemicals takeback reporting program. More

6.7
Samsung - Strong position for having a good chemical policy, but still lack products that are free from the worst chemicals. Its take back system is not yet global and need improvement. More

6.7 Motorola - Some products on the market are free from the worst chemicals but loses points for not providing clear timelines for eliminating these chemicals in all products. Score points on reporting the recycling rate. More

6
Toshiba - Good improvement particularly on waste and take back criteria. Moved forward for providing some models without the worst chemicals and for timelines for complete phase out. More

6 Fujitsu-Siemens - Some models free of worst chemicals, but loses point for a weak takeback and recycling program. More

5.7
Acer - Standing still with improved chemical policies but no models free of the worst chemicals. Needs to improve on takeback program. More

5.3
Apple - Top mover with concrete timelines to eliminate the worst chemicals. Loses points for not have a green product on the market and for a weak take back program. More

5.3 HP - A free-faller, dropping down for failing to provide clear timelines for eliminating the worst chemicals. It looses points for weak definition of take back policies. More

5 Panasonic - Moving up for making available products free of the worst chemicals. Loses point for poor takeback program. More

4.3 LGE - It looses penalty point for inconsistent takeback policies. But score points for providing a mobile free of the worst chemical. Need improvement. More

4 Sony - At the bottom of the rank for losing penalty point for inconsistent takeback policies. Some models without the worst chemicals. More


Ranking criteria explained


The ranking criteria reflect the demands of the Toxic Tech campaign to the electronics companies. Our two demands are that companies should:

  • clean up their products by eliminating hazardous substances;
  • takeback and recycle their products responsibly once they become obsolete.

The two issues are connected. The use of harmful chemicals in electronics prevents their safe recycling when the products are discarded. Companies scored marks out of 30 this has then been calculated to a mark out of 10 for simplicity.

Follow the more link beside each company for the full details of their score. The full criteria for scoring the companies is available. Download the full pdf of the scorecard.

Each score is based solely on public information on the companies website. Companies found not to be following their published policies will be deducted penalty point in future versions of the guide.

The guide is updated every 3 months. The current version was published on the 27 June 2007.

Disclaimer: Our 'Guide to Greener Electronics' aims to clean up the electronics sector and get manufacturers to take responsibility for the full life cycle of their products, including the electronic waste that their products generate. The guide does not rank companies on labour standards, energy use or any other issues, but recognises that these are important in the production and use of electronics products.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 9:30 PM
liveearthsponsors.jpgCoca-Cola, Pepsi, Yahoo, and MSN have the highest awareness of any brands in connection with the upcoming Live Earth concerts, according to new research from Lightspeed Research and the Ethical Reputation Index. That is great for Coke and Yahoo, which beat or tied their main rivals and are not sponsors of the event.

The news gets worse for Pepsi. Some 19 percent of the 500 Australians canvassed thought Coke was a sponsor - eight percentage points more than Pepsi, the Sydney Morning Herald reports. Awareness of the role played by Pepsi was higher among US and UK respondents, with the final result a tie between the two rivals at 19 percent.

The survey results point to most companies not creating pre-event buzz for their roles. Forty-nine percent of survey respondents could not point to one of the sponsors.

Other companies wrongly nominated as sponsors were Samsung (nine percent), BMW (nine percent).

MSN, which will stream the concerts at LiveEarth.MSN.com, launched a host of promotions, including earth-friendly premiums and sweepstakes, to raise awareness of its role, Promo reports.

But the timing coincides with a green marketing push by Yahoo that includes its own green site and the announcement that it would become carbon neutral by the end of 2007. It seems, at least in terms of the survey, that Yahoo’s green push has trumped that of MSN.

Coke has also been involved in a number of high profile green moves, including its $20 million freshwater conservation project, which could, in part, explain the survey results.

Here is how the other sponsors ended up:

Who do you think is sponsoring Live Earth?
49% Do not know
19% Pepsi (S)
19% Coca cola
19% Yahoo
17% MSN (S)
15% Philips (S)
12% SMART (S)
10% Stonyfield Farms (S)
9% Samsung
9% BMW

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 9:23 PM
I've heard of math rock, but now science rock? Rad! I will be tuning into this portion of Live Earth for sure!

Live Earth: Scientists set to Rock Antarctica to Deliver on Gore's Promise for Music on Every Continent-repost from Treehugger.com George Spyros, New York City, USA on 06.26.07


An indie-folk rock ensemble made up of scientists already stationed in Antarctica will perform for Live Earth fulfilling Al Gore's promise for music from 7 continents on 7.7.07. The band Nunatak, the Greenlandic word that means an exposed summit of a ridge mountain or peak within an ice field or glacier, will be rocking the ice for their 17 on-site colleagues and also for, well, the rest of the world. Former Vice President Gore personally reached out to the band, not that he had many alternatives. Live Earth organizers did originally explore the idea of flying in performers, but quickly dropped that when told the continent is pretty much inaccessible during the winter. The Rothera Research Station itself is on the Antarctic Peninsula, the fastest warming region on Earth. Temperatures there have risen by 5 degrees F during the last 50 years.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 8:34 PM
All the biggies made the move to green their operations this week. While there isn't much information out there on how deep their greening measures will go, it can safely be said that this is a step in the right direction. Always one step ahead of the game, Sub Pop started the trend last year when they signed up for renewable energy to offset the electricity in their headquarters.

Big 4 Labels Make Green Moves-repost from Environmental Leader

The biggest brands across the music business are changing their environmental habits, MediaPost reports.

Every major label is on board in one way or another in corporate-wide greening efforts, ranging from copying on both sides of the paper to the use of energy-efficient light bulbs, according to Bill Werde, deputy editor of Billboard.

Warner Music Group and EMI are working with the Natural Resources Defense Council on a series of greening initiatives. An unnamed environmental agency is advising Sony-owned companies on environmental policies. Universal Music Group follows directives from parent company Vivendi.

One of the most significant changes the labels can have on their environmental practices would be the elimination of the jewel case. “The labels are working with key distribution partners and retailers–the Wal-Marts and Best Buys, which represent two-thirds of all record sales,” Werde says.

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Wednesday, June 27, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 1:23 AM
My boyfriend has had it with my alarm. Granted, I wake up (at an un-Godly hour) to Dolly Parton signing "Stumbled out of bed and into the kitchen, pour myself a cup of ambition...." After a month or so of that every weekday morning, I can't blame the guy. I asked him what a better ringtone choice would be, and he answered "Something more peaceful."

So, I set out to find a new alarm clock. I settled on the Digital Zen Alarm Clock from Gaiam.com. It's small, apparently quite pleasant to wake up to, and uses two AA batteries, so it's pretty energy efficient, too.

I'm sharing this because upon checkout at Gaiam.com, I was asked if I wanted to "Go Zero" my transaction by paying an extra two dollars to offset the emissions associated with transporting my order to me.

Here's how it works:

Go Zerosm to zero-out the impact of shipping your order.

100% of your donation goes directly to The Conservation Fund's program to plant trees.

In partnership with The Conservation Fund, Gaiam now makes it easy to completely offset the carbon dioxide emissions required to ship your Gaiam order. Just key in the number of trees you'd like to have planted. (No additional shipping will be charged.)

A donation of just $2 enables The Conservation Fund to plant one tree, which over its lifetime will absorb more than one ton of carbon dioxide from the atmosphere - enough to offset the emissions resulting from shipping a 200-pound package from Los Angeles to New York.

Your trees will be planted in special Gaiam Groves, lands that are reserved for trees planted through contributions by Gaiam and its customers. You'll receive a Go Zerosm certificate with your order to thank you for taking action to make a difference.

Click the Go Zerosm banner on your Shopping Cart page to read more about Go Zero, celebrity-and-everyday Heroes of Zero, and The Conservation Fund.

Pretty rad. I hope this catches on with other online retailers. Do you think this type of environmental balancing will be commonplace someday?

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 1:13 AM
I love me some Al Gore (and John Crier for that matter), but things aren't looking too great for Live Earth, I'm trying to keep an open mind, but.....

Live Earth Not Getting So Good A Response (repost from PSFK.com)

by Piers Fawkes in Ethical Consumerism, Music, Entertainment

Picture 13Charity gig Live Earth has had to be cancelled in one country and moved to a smaller venue in another. Johannesburg officials have found it hard to sell enough tickets for the July 7 event so it has downgraded to a venue of 18,000.

Meanwhile Istanbul’s Live Earth gig was cancelled when potential sponsors steered clear of the event in fear of protests. NME says:

Local business in Turkey are said to be reluctant to get involved with the event, fearing protests from environmental groups about pollution produced by their factories.


What do you think about Live Earth? Do you think they'll be able to pull it off? It's a great idea and stands to build awareness for lots of folks around the world, I just hope it works out.

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Monday, June 25, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 3:07 AM
My friend compiled this list of TV programming that features solutions to climate change:

Global Warming on TV
6/24/07 - 7/7/07


The better we understand a problem, the more effectively we resolve it. Knowledge is power!

So, let's soak up some knowledge about Global Warming and save the world!!! Grab your remote and Tivo these great shows about global warming and related issues! These shows air within the next two weeks, check your local listings for dates and times.


MUST SEE GLOBAL WARMING TV

SHOTOO - An Inconvenient Truth (2006): Former presidential candidate Al Gore campaigns to raise awareness of the dangers of global warming and calls for immediate action to curb the problem.
STARZ - Who Killed the Electric Car?: Filmmaker Chris Paine examines the development and eventual destruction of General Motors' EV-1, an automobile that required no gas, oil, muffler or brake changes.
UHD - Live Earth: The Concerts for a Climate in Crisis: Scheduled performances include Madonna, the Police, Bon Jovi, Sheryl Crow, John Mayer, Kelly Clarkson, Melissa Etheridge, Faith Hill, Fall Out Boy, Enrique Iglesias and the Red Hot Chili Peppers.


NATIONAL PROGRAMMING

CDUSA - Earth to America!: In Las Vegas, comics and celebrities raise awareness of issues concerning the environment.
CDUSA - The FIZZ Newzz: Vol. 8 The 101's wildly popular show, The FIZZ takes on the NEWZZ in classic FIZZ fashion. Anchor Peter Zotollo and a troop of videobloggers take on environmental issues in this Earth Dayz Special.
DCHOME - Get Fresh With Sara Snow: Eco Fashion Environmentally friendly clothing.
DHC - Get Fresh With Sara Snow: Top Earth Tips Six tips for a healthier planet.
DSC - Dirty Jobs: Bio-Diesel-Man Working with bees; turning cooking oil into a gasoline alternative.
FLIVING - I Want That!: Glass Kitchen Sinks and Tiles; Solar Shingles; Fireplace Waterfall Kitchen sinks and tiles; solar power shingles; fireplace with a water feature.
MTV2 - Pimp My Ride: Earth Day Special The crew gives a 1965 Chevy Impala an environmentally friendly makeover; Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger (R-Calif.) visits.
SCIENCE - What If: The Oil Runs Out: The days of conventional oil surpluses are coming to an end.
SCIENCE - Meltdown: A Global Warming: Paul Rose examines the controversial scientific topic.
SCIENCE - Cool Fuel: Cow-Power and Solar Power Shaun rides electric bikes from Green Bay, Wis., to Chicago.
SCIENCE - Planet Earth: The Future: Environment and conservation Specialists discuss environmental and conservation issues.
SCIENCE - Building the Future: The Search for the Ultimate Energy The search for new energy solutions across the globe.
SCIENCE - Beyond Invention: New Energy New forms of energy resources.
SCIENCE - Futurecar: The Fuel Alternatives to gasoline.
SUNDAE - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Paper or Plastic?
SUNDAE - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Sports - Three people dedicated to keeping the planet safe for athletic pursuits.
TRAV - John Ratzenberger's Made in America: Whitman's Chocolate Whitman's chocolate factory in Kansas; Segway Human Transporter; Stormy Kromer Company in Michigan.
TWC - Forecast Earth: Green Automobiles The new generation of environmentally friendly cars; the impact of weather on roadways.
UHD - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Build - An architect works with clients to build their first "green" home; a house made of growing tree trunks; environmentally conscious ideas for low-income neighborhoods.
UHD - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Cities - A developer helps turn a polluted field into a sustainable community; two turbines are submerged in New York's East River; guerrilla gardeners beautify blighted plots of unused urban land.
UHD - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Drive - The debut of an electric sports car of the future; brightly colored affordable electric commuter cars; a high-school team works on their electric vehicle prior to competition in a variety of road rallies.
UHD - Big Ideas for a Small Planet: Fuel - A truck that runs on vegetable oil from a fried-chicken party; a woman's bio-diesel publicity campaign; the test of an ethanol racing car at Daytona.

LOS ANGELES AREA PROGRAMMING
If you're outside ofthe LA area, check your local PBS stations. Some of these shows may be listed!

KCET - California's Green: Innovations that are helping the state's environmental challenges.
KLCS - Journey to Planet Earth: The State of the Ocean's Animals Global warming and illegal fishing methods cause the extinction of certain fish species and raise sea levels around the world; host Matt Damon.
KLCS - Ask This Old House: Shower Valve; Recycling Batteries Repairing an old shower mixing valve; cordless power tools; properly recycling batteries.
KOCE - Inside OC: Global Warming Dr. Susan Trumbore, UCI and Dr. Donald Booth, Chapman University discuss global warming.
KOCE - The Power of the Sun: Finding economically realistic, clean and safe energy sources to replace fossil fuels.
KOCE - Orange County Forum: Why OC Is Capturing the World's Attention The emerging hydrogen economy with a dual-pressure hydrogen fueling station.
KVCR - Simple Living With Wanda Urbanska: Alternative power such as wind turbine and solar panels; earth gym; Quakers; gym bag.
KVCR - Simple Living With Wanda Urbanska: Bartering; direct exchange Bartering; direct exchange; sustainable business values and practices; tree-friendly world; paper fastener.


SHOWS FOR KIDS

BOOM - The Adventures of Captain Planet: Series.
DCKIDS - Serious: Arctic: 6 The team flies to an Arctic glaciers to measure the effects of global warming.
DCKIDS - The Magic School Bus: The Magic School Bus Getting Energized The class explores energy.
DISN - Charlie & Lola: Reading; Recycling Charlie helps Lola learn to love reading; the two enter a recycling competition.
NOGN - Franklin: Franklin Plants a Tree; Franklin the Hero Franklin is surprised at how large his Earth Day tree will grow.
TOOND - Goof Troop: Waste Makes Haste Pete and Goofy start a recycling business


Friday, June 22, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 12:32 AM
This morning's Morning Edition highlighted two back-to-back spots on indie musicians weighing the trade-off of gaining exposure on Clear Channel Radio with no royalties or not getting any exposure on the media giant. Listen here

The next segment was about the greening of the music industry and what record labels are doing. Pretty awesome, listen to it. What do you think about digital downloads versus tangible CDs and LPs?

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 12:25 AM
Jun 21 2007

secondlife.jpgThe Wall Street Journal has an interesting article on big name companies, including HP, Microsoft, and Verizon, that used Second Life to take part in a virtual job fair.

It takes some getting used to at a Second Life recruiting event this spring hosted by Bain & Co., the global management consultancy, a partner’s avatar slumped over by accident and looked as if it were asleep, the Journal writes.

But the payoff can be big, according to the article. It is cheaper than holding an actual job fair, where companies have to pay travel costs for recruiters. Hewlett-Packard, for example, says the cost of participating in the job fair - which includes buying land in Second Life - was less than the price of paying a third-party recruiter to hire one experienced candidate.

It also seems that interviewing in Second Life could reduce emissions, using the same arguments video conferencing companies have started using to tout their greenness.

British Telecom claims to have reduced its carbon footprint by 97,000 tons of CO2 per year, that is 15 percent of its CO2 use, by using phone conferences and videoconferencing to cut back on staff travel for meetings.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 12:02 AM
MTV Tackles Climate Change in a Big Way!
by Kenny Luna, North Babylon, NY on 06.15.07

mtv1.jpg

When the largest television network in the world with a potential audience of 1.5 billion people in 162 countries decides to make global climate change a top priority, it is time to sit up and take notice. In fact, the MTV SWITCH campaign launched yesterday aims to target people between the ages of 15 to 25 who happen to live in countries with high carbon emissions. The aim is to connect with them and lead them to question their high consumption lifestyles, hopefully raising their consciousness of the environment in general and the fight against global warming in particular at the same time. The organizing principle behind all of it is the idea that when large groups of individuals choose to begin taking small actions on their own it can add up to massive results. To help get youth involved they will be targeting them with public service announcements, television programs, and online resources accessible via the MTV Switch website. And you can bet they will be incredibly effective at making the connection inside of kids minds with them too. It seems that in the strange and wacky world of teenage minds our friends at MTV have made themselves a more trusted source of news than CNN. Go figure!

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Thursday, June 21, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 11:56 PM
Treehugger.com published this very thoughtful piece about Al Gore's interview in Rolling Stone. While my criticisms of Rolling Stones paper choices were harsh, I'm glad the substance in the magazine reflects some important aspects of the fight against climate change. While most interviews with Al tend to read the same way, this one's different--and worth your time. Pay attention:

AL GORE'S FIGHT AGAINST THE CLIMATE CRISIS IN ROLLING STONE. Rolling Stone magazine has devoted a sizable portion of their latest issue (on newsstands until June 28) to talking about the dangers we face relating to global warming. They've enlisted help from some heavy hitters, including media juggernaut and "environmentalist-in-chief" Al Gore, who's been making the rounds lately. In an interview with the mag, Al talks about the rising tide of support for the climate crisis, whether or not we've reached a tipping point, and how events like Live Earth can help his cause. One thing he said really resonated with TreeHugger; when asked if he believes we can be saved by Priuses and new light bulbs, Gore said, "I agree that we're not going to solve this problem by buying Priuses and changing our light bulbs. But driving hybrids and choosing better technology is still important in two respects. First, it makes a small contribution to reducing CO2. And second, when people make changes in their own lives, they are much more likely to become part of a critical mass of public opinion and to support the bigger policy changes that are going to be needed to really solve the problem."

This is an important point: individually, or as individuals, solving the problem isn't as easy as getting a new car or buying some new light bulbs, but it's an important part of the evolution of the idea that everything we do and everything we buy and consume has a carbon cost. While buying a hybrid won't stop global warming, support of cleaner technology and greener practices is not only a way to reduce an individual's carbon footprint, but a way to begin to engage in social, moral and political activism that represents the "sea change" that Gore references several times in the interview. And he's still optimistic; About his current attitude toward the problem (including his vision for the short term) Al says he still thinks we can turn the ship around: "I will 'fess up to the element of 'hope being father to the thought' here. But I don't think it's an unrealistic hope at all. I believe that it's much more likely than not that we will see within the next few years a very dramatic political change in most of the world, including in the United States, that will sharply reduce CO2." Hmm... read (or listen to) the rest of Al's thoughts, including his latest answer for the million dollar question about returning to politics. ::more ::Rolling Stone

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Monday, June 18, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 8:18 PM
That's my attempt at rapping.....I'm hoping my rhyme is catchy enough to get stuck in your head so you hear it every time you leave your apartment, home, or studio, and you unplug as many appliances as possible.

Seriously, The New York Times via PSFK reported some interesting facts about how much power your appliances suck up while they are in low power mode (or lopomo, yo). The article advocates that you should unplug as many appliances as possible when you're not using them or plug them into power strips and flip the switch when you leave.

This is really important for musicians because amps, computers, and recording equipment are big offenders. Here's the story from PSFK and the New York Times:

Electronics Sap Energy Even When Off

Gadgets The New York Times has a very poignant article highlighting the importance of not just shutting down your electronics, but actually unplugging them. Just about all of your favorite pieces of hardware continue sucking down copious amounts of energy even when you aren't using them - yes, even when they're on low-energy modes.

The NYT writes:

Indeed, the Department of Energy estimates that in the average home, 40 percent of all electricity used to power home electronics is consumed while the products are turned off. Add that all up, and it equals the annual output of 17 power plants, the government says. In an effort to address that, a consortium of Intel, Google, PC makers and other technology companies this week announced their intent to increase the PC’s overall energy efficiency to 90 percent.

Products that idle in what the industry calls low-power mode, or lopomo, consumed about 10 percent of total electricity in California homes, according to a 2002 study prepared for the California Energy Commission by the Lawrence Berkeley National Laboratory. A few of those devices, even those with Energy Star ratings that signal that they are less wasteful, still use a lot of power. “Some of the larger big-screen TVs consume as much energy each year as a new refrigerator,” according to Noah Horowitz, a scientist at the Natural Resources Defense Council.

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Wednesday, June 13, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 10:57 PM
Who would have thought that while I was at the Fillmore last night seeing the always fantastic Boggs and Hot Chip, this story was being printed on the front page of the San Francisco Chronicle's Business Section:

Bay Area concerts getting greener

Live Nation moves to cut back shows' greenhouse gases

Wednesday, June 13, 2007

Even live music is going green.

The Bay Area office for Live Nation, an entertainment venue management company formerly known as Bill Graham Presents that promotes live concerts worldwide, has initiated a program that is expected to reduce greenhouse gas emissions, energy use and waste generated by six of its local venues, which draw more than 1 million concert goers each year.

The program will be implemented at Shoreline Amphitheatre in Mountain View; Sleep Train Pavilion in Concord; and the Fillmore, the Warfield, Punch Line Comedy Club and Cobb's Comedy Club, all in San Francisco.

Live Nation SF is looking to reduce greenhouse gas emissions by providing upgraded parking for hybrid cars and cars with four or more passengers at Shoreline and Sleep Train. It will also purchase carbon offset credits to compensate for emissions generated by fans, employees and artists who attend events.

To reduce power consumption by 10 percent, Live Nation SF will install energy-saving lighting and has already replaced 1,700 bulbs. It will also reduce water use by up to 5 million gallons per year by putting in a new lawn care system and upgrading kitchen equipment.

Lee Smith, chairman of Live Nation SF, said that the company started planning the program last summer and that about 95 percent of the initiatives are in place.

"My biggest concern was to not be fashionable but do what needs to be done," Smith said.

Although some of the initiatives, like replacing the lighting, will cost Live Nation SF money up front, other initiatives are allowing it to save. For instance, composting and recycling at the Warfield could result in an annual savings of $17,000 in waste removal. Live Nation SF has not calculated the full cost of implementing the program.

Of the estimated 800 tons of waste that all six venues now produce, about 223 tons are being recycled. Live Nation SF will try to bring that up to 280 tons, Smith said.

If successful, the program may be replicated in some of the company's 160 other venues globally. Last year, Live Nation organized 26,000 events in 18 countries, drawing nearly 60 million fans.

Maybe the next crop of apples will be locally grown organic? Hey, anything can happen.

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Tuesday, June 12, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 10:02 PM
All the biggies joined together today to make a huge announcement: they're working together to make computers more efficient--the new initiative will support computers that use less energy and save the energy they currently waste. The group is also expanding the effort to improve efficiency in servers. Here's the press release from Google, Inc. Conspiciously missing is Apple.....anyone know why?

Intel and Google Join with Dell, EDS, EPA, HP, IBM, Lenovo, Microsoft, PG&E, World Wildlife Fund and Others to Launch Climate Savers Computing Initiative

Broad Effort Organized to Drive Energy-Efficient Computing; Goal to Save $5.5 Billion in Energy Costs and Reduce Greenhouse Gas Emissions by 54 Million Tons Per Year*

MOUNTAIN VIEW, Calif., Jun 12, 2007 (BUSINESS WIRE) -- Intel Corporation and Google Inc. joined with Dell, EDS, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA), HP, IBM, Lenovo, Microsoft, PG&E, World Wildlife Fund (WWF) and more than 25 additional organizations today announced the Climate Savers Computing Initiative ( www.climatesaverscomputing.org). The goal of the new broad-based environmental effort is to save energy and reduce greenhouse gas emissions by setting aggressive new targets for energy-efficient computers and components, and promoting the adoption of energy-efficient computers and power management tools worldwide.

"Today, the average desktop PC wastes nearly half of its power, and the average server wastes one-third of its power," said Urs Holzle, senior vice president, Operations & Google Fellow. "The Climate Savers Computing Initiative is setting a new 90 percent efficiency target for power supplies, which if achieved, will reduce greenhouse gas emissions by 54 million tons per year -- and save more than $5.5 billion in energy costs.

"We are asking businesses and individuals throughout the world to join with us to institute better power management of their computing equipment and purchase energy-efficient computers," Holzle added.

Initial companies who intend to participate in the initiative represent both the demand and supply side of the computer industry, including computer manufacturers and chip makers, as well as environmental groups, energy companies, retailers, government agencies and more. The group will formalize its membership in coming weeks.

"By 2010, the Climate Savers Computing Initiative will cut greenhouse gas emissions in an amount equal to removing more than 11 million cars from the road or shutting down 20 500-megawatt coal-fired power plants -- a significant step in reducing the emissions affecting our planet," said Pat Gelsinger, senior vice president and general manager of Intel's Digital Enterprise Group.

"Computers have helped us make huge strides toward a more efficient world today, with reduced travel, more productivity, online transactions and more," Gelsinger added. "But with today's latest energy-efficient technologies, we can do even more. The commitment of the member companies that are here with us today is a firm statement to the collective resolve to make an enormous impact."

Computer and computer component manufacturers who support the initiative are committed to building energy-efficient products that meet or surpass the EPA's Energy Star(R) guidelines. Businesses must also commit to requiring high efficiency systems for the majority of their corporate desktop PCs and volume server purchases, and to deploy and use power management tools on desktop PCs.

Individual consumers can also support the Climate Savers Computing Initiative by signing up at www.climatesaverscomputing.org, where they will be able to pledge to purchase an initiative-certified system. The Web site will also help consumers learn how to take advantage of their existing computer's power-saving capabilities such as sleep and hibernate modes, which can reduce the amount of energy consumed by up to 60 percent.

The Climate Savers Computing Initiative licensed its name from the WWF Climate Savers program, which involves several leading companies working to reduce their carbon footprint.

"This is the first time our Climate Savers program has been applied to an entire sector, engaging manufacturers, retailers and consumers," said John Donoghue, senior vice president for the World Wildlife Fund. "We are pleased to join these industry leaders to provide solutions to address climate change."

The initiative's energy efficiency benchmarks will initially follow the EPA's Energy Star guidelines; but with increasing requirements during the next several years. For example, 2007 Energy Star specifications require that PC power supplies meet at least 80 percent minimum efficiency. The initiative would require a minimum of 90 percent by 2010. In addition, the initiative sets a higher efficiency target in the power supply for volume servers (1U and 2U single-socket and dual-socket systems): an increase from 85 percent to 92 percent efficiency by 2010. For a complete description of the requirements, see www.climatesaverscomputing.org.

Initial Supporters

Intel Corporation ( www.intel.com), Google Inc. (www.google.com), Advanced Micro Devices, Inc. ( www.amd.com), Canonical Ltd. (www.canonical.com), Center for Information Technology Research in the Interest of Society ( www.citris-uc.org), Coldwatt, Inc. ( www.coldwatt.com), Dell Inc. (www.dell.com), Delta Electronics, Inc ( www.delta.com.tw), eBay (www.ebay.com), Electronic Data Systems Corporation ( www.eds.com), EMC Corporation (www.emc.com), Fujitsu Limited ( www.fujitsu.com), HP (www.hp.com), Hipro Technology Inc. ( www.hipro-us.com), Hitachi, Ltd. (www.hitachi.com), IBM Corporation ( www.ibm.com), LANDesk Software (www.landesk.com), Lenovo ( www.lenovo.com), Linux Foundation (www.linux-foundation.com), Massachusetts Institute of Technology ( web.mit.edu), Microsoft Corporation ( www.microsoft.com), Natural Resources Defense Council (www.nrdc.com), NEC Corporation ( www.nec.com), One Laptop Per Child (laptop.org), PG&E Corporation ( www.pgecorp.com), Power-One, Inc. (www.power-one.com), Quanta Computer Inc. ( www.quantatw.com), Rackable Systems (www.rackable.com), Red Hat, Inc. ( www.redhat.com), Starbucks Corporation (www.starbucks.com), Sun Microsystems, Inc. ( www.sun.com), Supermicro Computer Inc. (www.supermicro.com), Ubuntu ( www.ubuntu.com), Unisys (www.unisys.com) United States Environmental Protection Agency ( www.epa.gov), University of Michigan (www.umich.edu), Verdiem Corporation ( www.verdiem.com), World Resources Institute (www.wri.org), World Wildlife Fund ( www.worldwildlife.org), Yahoo! Inc. (www.yahoo.com).

About Intel

Intel, the world leader in silicon innovation, develops technologies, products and initiatives to continually advance how people work and live. Additional information about Intel is available at www.intel.com/pressroom. Information on Intel's environmental programs and policies is available at www.intel.com/intel/other/ehs/.

About Google Inc.

Google's innovative search technologies connect millions of people around the world with information every day. Founded in 1998 by Stanford Ph.D. students Larry Page and Sergey Brin, Google today is a top web property in all major global markets. Google's targeted advertising program provides businesses of all sizes with measurable results, while enhancing the overall web experience for users. Google is headquartered in Silicon Valley with offices throughout the Americas, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit www.google.com.

* Based on IDC projections of desktop and server volumes between 2007 and 2011. Emissions savings in mid-2010, and savings are annual starting in 2010.

* Climate Savers (R) is a trademark or registered trademark of WWF used under license.

Intel and the Intel logo are trademarks of Intel Corporation or its subsidiaries in the United States and other countries.

SOURCE: Google Inc.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 9:07 PM
Rolling Stone announced that their June 28th issue will be devoted to climate change and will be printed on carbon neutral paper. The magazine's explanation of their choice of carbon neutral paper over recycled paper is just plain ridiculous: (from the New York Times) Eric Bates, deputy managing editor of Rolling Stone, said, "We think recycled paper is great."

But he added, "we are publishing some of the greatest photographers and artists, and the print quality on recycled paper does not do them justice."

If that was true, I'd probably be writing a very favorable post right now. However, it is obvious Mr. Bates and the Rolling Stone production team have not done any comparison prints. There are plenty of paper options out there that offer the benefit of being produced with low levels of greenhouse emissions AND boast high levels of recycled content---without any loss of quality! GreenBase details them here. New Leaf Paper, for example, has an extensive line of great sustainable papers that I've used in commercial print jobs with great success and no loss of quality. Check out their Eco Audit that explains the sustainable qualities of the paper:

For a publication that advocates turning it up to 11, Rolling Stone's effort could definitely use a good hard clockwise turn.

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Monday, June 11, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 11:26 PM

Kelley Stoltz and I sat down with Meet the Planet and discussed the greening of his record, Below the Branches and his plans to green his next record--due out on Sub Pop Records in a couple months.
Listen here

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 12:22 AM

warner.jpgWEA, the U.S. sales and distribution company of Warner Music Group, says (via Ecorazzi) that starting at the end of March, it will use ecologically-enhanced paper packaging for its standard CD and DVD products in the U.S.

WMG has also developed a new company-wide program to reduce or offset greenhouse gas emissions associated with global climate change, beginning with a “carbon-neutral” Grammy party.

“Environmentally responsible behavior is good for corporate America: it’s smart ecology and smart economics,” said John Esposito, President and CEO of WEA. “It lowers the costs of paper procurement and ...

Article taken from Environmental Leader - http://www.environmentalleader.com

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Sunday, June 10, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 11:45 PM
I learned a new vocabulary word today: prosumerification--it's the marriage of professional and consumer and manifests itself in stuff like professional-grade appliances and electronics. Newly built homes and condos often boast "professional grade range top and hood"--but fail to mention that even if you're just making mac & cheese on it, the greenhouse gas emissions that result in your use of a "professional grade appliance" are way more than the old faithful General Electric model version you got in your first apartment. Always at the cusp of new trends is Treehugger.com, who weighs in with this piece:

The Prosumerification of Everything
by Lloyd Alter, Toronto on 06. 6.07

Prosumer is a portmanteau from Professional and consumer, it is an ugly word picked up by the vendors of digital cameras to describe too many complicated and formerly expensive professional features being added to consumer models. Paul Kedrosky makes it uglier by inventing Prosumerification- the tendency of home stoves morph into into commercial Garland ranges, Home entertainment systems that rival a THX equipped cinema, video cameras where George Lucas couldn't use all the features, all of them more complex, expensive and sucking more power.

A remarkable example can be seen in rice cookers; Toshiba invented them 50 years ago with a simple heating element beneath the bowl that had a thermostat to click off as soon as the water was gone. We use a 25 year old one like this every night and it still works perfectly. Now the Wall Street Journal tells us that Toshiba is offering the Vacuum-Pressure Rice Cooker for 100,000 yen ( US$ 830). It creates a vacuum while the rice soaks, then 264 pounds of pressure while it cooks, all in a vessel coated in silver and diamond dust to distribute the heat evenly.

One rice expert questions the logic of this:

The latest rash of technology is a bit much for Mr. Nishijima, the rice expert. "Just because you pay 70,000 yen [about $575] or 110,000 yen doesn't mean that there's a drastic change in taste," says Mr. Nishijima, who adds that good rice can be made with the simplest of rice cookers if it is to be eaten right away. He thinks consumers might be too susceptible to hype. "It almost seems like anything is OK as long as it's expensive," he says. ::Wall Street Journal, subscription only but copy of portion here.

Also in the Journal was "Japan Aims To Be Climate Change Leader But Lags Kyoto Goals"

Household emissions present a major challenge. (household emissions rose 37.4% from 1990 levels)

The government estimates that household emission of 175 million tons of CO2 in 2005 will have to be cut by 38 million tons - or nearly 22% - by 2010. Officials are urging citizens to take quicker showers, use less air conditioning and heating, and switch to eco-friendly appliances.

Coincidence? ::Infectious Greed

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Thursday, June 7, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 1:50 AM

While you're soaking up the tunes at Wakarusa, spend some time at this year's Sustainability Symposium, too. Wakarusa has teamed up with the Bonneville Environmental Foundation or BEF (the folks that helped Sub Pop and Kelley Stoltz green up) and New Belgium Brewery to educate concert-goers about sustainability.

From the Bonneville Environmental Foundation: The key theme of this year’s symposium is the conservation and production of energy. Friday evening, June 8th, Jeff Goodell, author of Big Coal, will take center stage to address coal-fired energy. Saturday morning will feature additional speakers including Wes Jackson of The Land Institute, followed by a panel discussion addressing the issues of energy and related environmental impacts including climate change. Additional speakers include Nic Thiesen of the New Belgium Brewing Company, and Pete Ferrell, a fourth generation Kansas rancher whose land hosts wind turbines.

Along with using biodiesel-powered generators to power the sound stages, Wakarusa offset the greenhouse gas emissions associated with the festival with BEF Zephyr Energy Green Tags. This measure furthers the green initiatives Wakarusa has had in place in the past. Strong recycling programs and waste reduction methods like providing incentives for concert-goers to reuse cups have been in place for some time.

The Sustainability Symposium will take place Friday night and Saturday during the day. Check it out! More information is here.


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Tuesday, June 5, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 9:13 PM
Bush gets it from all sides
Posted by David Roberts at 7:40 AM on 03 Jun 2007 -from Grist.org

Poor Bush, he just can't get a break. He announces a shiny new climate-change strategy, and what does he get? Nothing but grief.

Nancy Pelosi called it "the same stale proposals he has repeatedly put forward to the international community."

Al Gore called it "purely and simply smoke and mirrors [that] has the transparent purpose of delaying the efforts that could start now."

Dan Froomkin called it an "attempt to muddy the debate about the issue and derail European and U.N. plans for strict caps on emissions."

Britain and Germany are not amused:

Britain and Germany yesterday joined forces to warn President George Bush that talks on climate change must take place within a United Nations framework and not in an ad hoc process floated last week by Bush....'For me, that is non-negotiable,' the German Chancellor Angela Merkel said of the need to ensure that climate change negotiations take place within the existing UN framework.
And what about the right? What's the reaction from Bush's eternally faithful base? Mark Levin says this to the president:

You expanded the federal role in education, and we held our nose because of the war. You signed McCain-Feingold in the dead of night, and we held our nose because of the war. You expanded Medicare by adding prescription drugs, and we held our nose because of the war. You increased farm subsidies, and we held our nose because of the war. Today you disparage us for opposing a massive amnesty program that endangers our economy and national security. Today you even embrace the religion of global warming, a stunning shift from prior policy (your administration even went to the Supreme Court and argued correctly that carbon dioxide is not a pollutant). What's a conservative to do?

I won't answer that last question.

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 9:01 PM
One of my friends once lamented about a time he toured and kept holding his laptop up in the tour van to get a wireless signal while driving through Utah. When he finally got a signal, his battery died. Enter:

Solar Powered WiFi Repeater
by Matthew Sparkes, London, UK on 06. 4.07
Science & Technology (electronics)
Meraki Networks have released a solar powered outdoor WiFi repeater, which can cover entire neighborhoods with Internet access. This of course makes it perfect for developing countries where electricity supply is scant or unreliable.
Sanjit Biswas, CEO and co-founder of Meraki, said, 'To change the economics of Wi-Fi access across the globe, there’s got to be a simple, efficient and inexpensive method for sending the signal long distances outdoors. The Meraki Solar and Meraki Outdoor will play an important role in our efforts to bring the next billion people online in the coming years.'
Of course, the device is also a perfect way to extend WiFi signals into your garden or to neighbours, without using any electricity. A very green way to surf; outdoors, and solar powered. :: Meraki.net

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posted by Sarah Krasley @ 12:36 AM

Request for Urban Street Sightings: Submit and Vote on the Best Urban Images Captured by New Google Maps Tool

By Ryan Singel May 30, 2007 | 3:31:30 PM

Google's new Street View, a new Google Maps feature that uses vehicle-cameras to take 360-degree street level views of major urban areas, captured all sorts of urban ephemera in the process from tabbies in windows to red light runners.

Help Wired News capture the best inadvertent urban snapshots. Submit and vote on your favorite urban scenes -- be they citizens flaunting the laws or hot dog vendors rocking a sweet style. You can find some inspiration and examples here, New York shots here, and the well named streetviewr.com has some good links, too.

Check out the post here, vote for your favorites and submit some, too.

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Monday, June 4, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 11:54 PM
Domino Magazine's monthly column features Miranda July this month. Check it out:

my green life: the indie auteur~
Hailed for her cult 2005 film, Me and You and Everyone We Know Miranda July just debuted an equally tragicomic short-story collection, No One Belongs Here More Than You. Here she shares how she tries to be as eco as humanly possible.

Photo by Amanda Friedman

Miranda July

Vintage pants, blouse, and pumps from The Wasteland (323) 653-3028

You recently moved from Portland, OR, to gas-guzzling Los Angeles. How are you transitioning? I'm not a real car person. But in L.A. you drive so much. When my grandmother's old Honda finally died, I took the prize money I'd gotten for my movie and spent it all on a Prius. So that absolves my guilt a little. Plus, it has a GPS system, so I don't get lost when I'm going to estate sales.


What do you look for at estate sales? Mostly clothes, but sometimes I'll find a great old chair or painting. Stores can be so overwhelming and depressing. But I love scouring estate sales for treasures. There are probably enough amazing old clothes out there to last us all forever.


You grew up in Berkeley, CA. Are you an Alice Waters fan? All the food I prepare at home is healthy, but I'm not a vegan or anything. I use an organic delivery service that sends a box of the freshest produce each week. It's handy if you're busy, because you know there's going to be a huge pile of something delicious waiting for you. And it forces you to find new ways to cook the things you get a lot of. I've made a lot of baked apple desserts recently.


What about bananas? They go bad so fast. Sometimes I freeze them, then later run them through my amazing Champion juicer for a sort of banana softserve. If you put a scoop of that into a glass of fresh-squeezed OJ, you get this really yummy breakfast-style take on a root-beer float.


As a writer, how do you avoid wasting paper? I try to stick to recycled paper, and I print on both sides of every page. But you have to be careful—I once gave away a script before realizing that there were some really private e-mails printed on the other side.


The article continues here.

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Friday, June 1, 2007

 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 1:45 AM
 
posted by Sarah Krasley @ 1:39 AM
Damien Rice: Singing Green

It's not easy being green when you're touring the country on planes and in buses, but Damien Rice is facing the challenge head-on.
By Kate Sheppard

Folk-rocker Damien Rice might sing sad tunes about lost love, but his wistful heart is in the right place when it comes to climate change. The environment is an issue that's been near his heart since his childhood in Ireland and has informed his work in many ways.

Rice puts his eco-sympathies into action every way he can. He and his band tour on a biodiesel-powered bus, and they offset the emissions of all their travel as well as the emissions created by audiences. They're also slated to play the United Kingdom leg of the Live Earth concert on July 7, 2007, and they recently joined the Virtual March at Laurie David's Web site, stopglobalwarming.org.

Though his music has become almost ubiquitous in American coffee shops since his debut album, “O,” was released in 2003, the singer is not one to make a public spectacle of his good deeds. Notoriously mum on his personal life, it's a rare opportunity to get the modest Rice to sit down for an interview. I caught up with him before an Earth Day concert put on by Seattle radio station, 103.7 The Mountain, to talk about the environment, his music and the growing movement to stop global warming.

Kate Sheppard: How did you become interested in the environment?

Damien Rice: I've always been interested in the environment since I was a kid, because I lived by a river and I used to go down there fishing. From the age of 5 or 6 I noticed a big change in the number of fish in the river, because I used to take notes when I was a kid. I'd go down there with my little book and go fishing and take a note of the time, date, water level, weather, what kind of bait I was using. I remember noticing that the water seemed dirtier and murkier as time went on. I always felt like I had a connection to nature.

KS: How does your environmental consciousness play into how you tour?

DR: I'm in terrible conflict about it, to be honest. I am responsible for more carbon emissions than any of my friends — than anybody I know, actually. And that's really weird to sit with, because I've always considered myself to be environmentally conscious. I have a real conflict even sitting here talking about the environment, saying, "Oh yeah, I'm an environmentally conscious person." I fly 20 people around the world, and we travel on two buses and two trucks, and we're driving all over the States. But we make an effort — we use biofuel whenever possible, and we offset the fuel we use for flights and buses as well as an estimation of what the audience used to come to the concerts.

KS: Can you tell us a bit about talking to Laurie David and becoming part of the Virtual March?

DR: When I was invited first to join the Virtual March, my natural reaction was, "Yeah, absolutely." And then they were like, "Can you write a piece explaining your reasons for joining?" It took me ages just to write something that I was happy with. Because I wrote this thing that was like, "Oh, global warming. We should all make an effort." And then I sat and thought about it, and I said, "Oh, my god, I'm a hypocrite. I'm flying all around the world traveling."

When I went to meet Laurie in her house in Los Angeles, I had this head full of questions, and I put them to her. I said, "What is your take on this, because I'm confused. I get information here and there. I want to believe, but I really don't know what to think." And she had a simple way of putting it that made me very comfortable with joining the march. She said that everyone she knows enjoys life, enjoys clean air. They like clean beaches, clean water, good food and a healthy lifestyle. And she said if we continue in the way that we're doing, we're going to destroy those beautiful things. But if we take the right steps and make an effort on a global level to change things, then we can preserve some of the beautiful things in life.

KS: What are some things that you do personally to fight global warming?

DR: The electricity that we use in our house now is entirely from wind power, and we want to get our own little windmill as well as solar panels. And we recycle. Myself and a group of friends have been writing songs together, and we're making a record for nature. We're making the record and we're going to release it, and all the royalties and all the money generated from the sales just go to nature, to giving back in some way. It's very weird being a musician, because people think you've got a great job, it's so magical. Whereas I sit down and I think of myself as somebody who manufactures plastic. So we're going to do that album, and I'm very excited about it. I think eventually I'm just going to get a piece of land and farm and live very simply. Who knows?

KS: You're participating in Al Gore's Live Earth concert this summer. How did you get involved with that? What do you hope will be the result of the concerts?

DR: When I heard it was going on, I expressed an interest in it. Again, it's one of these things that I have a little conflict about since people are flying in to play at the concert and flying back out after it. But I hope that it creates a massive amount of awareness among people around the world, so that when there's a push for governments to change the way we do things, the support is there among people. If people know what's going on and they're aware of the consequences of what we're doing, if that becomes spread throughout the world and throughout people's consciousness, that would be a great thing. It's in moments of change that these things are important, because if people just have a little bit more knowledge, if it's a decision for them to push for this or that, I think all the awareness helps.

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