NativeEnergy

Video: EmPOWERing Education in Indiana with On-site Wind Turbines

Monday, November 19, 2012 by

Wind energy is revolutionizing science education. In Indiana, NativeEnergy is helping schools build wind turbines that provide hands-on learning opportunities.

Facing budget cuts, Indiana schools needed a new approach.

The answer was an everyday resource: the wind.

Harold Seamon, assistant superintendent, Northwestern schools in Kokomo: “We looked at the possibility of building a wind turbine for several years. After doing a number of projects—we purchased equipment to improve our energy efficiency and the environment in our buildings—we finally said, ‘It would really be neat if we could generate some of our own power.’”

But they couldn’t do it alone. They turned to Performance Services to help assess the wind energy potential. Performance Services is a design-build engineering and construction firm with experience in developing community scale wind projects in Indiana.

Together, they discovered more than enough wind and expected major energy savings. But the project was still too costly to be built.

Carbon financing from NativeEnergy sealed the deal.

Jeff Bernicke, president, NativeEnergy: “When NativeEnergy heard this project needed additional funding, we were excited to help. It has so many benefits for the students, the school, and the community. Not only does it provide a stable source of locally produced energy, but it’s also a real life, full-scale renewable energy learning lab for the students and faculty.

“Our customers are buying the carbon reductions that will happen over the life of the project. These are known as carbon offsets. When our clients such as AVEDA, Clif Bar, Ben & Jerry’s, REVERB, and Touring Green make this offset purchase, they are playing a critical role in making this project happen.”

Harold Seamon: “The combination of utility savings on the one hand and carbon offsets on the other made the project viable for Northwestern schools.”

Finally, the turbines were built, and the excitement was contagious. Students are now learning about renewable energy, and some are even earning college credit.

We celebrated the project on October 19 at Northwestern High School.

Principal Al Remaly rode with NativeEnergy and Performance Services to the school. Then, a school-wide event taught students about their turbine. The companies also shared career advice with students. People even had the opportunity to climb the turbine.

Today, the three turbines are generating power throughout Indiana. They will cut 4,800 metric tons of greenhouse gases per year.

>> Learn more about this project

 

About NativeEnergy
NativeEnergy is an expert provider of carbon offsets, renewable energy credits, and carbon accounting software. With NativeEnergy’s Help Build™ offsets, businesses and individuals can help finance the construction of wind, biogas, solar, and other carbon reduction projects with strong social and environmental benefits. Since 2000, NativeEnergy’s customers have helped build over 50 projects, reducing more than 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases, and the company has over 4 million tons under contract. All NativeEnergy carbon offsets undergo third-party validation and verification. Learn more at www.nativeenergy.com.

LOHAS Forum 2012: NativeEnergy Releases CO2 Report

Friday, October 5, 2012 by

>> Download the 2012 LOHAS Forum CO2 Report

The annual LOHAS conference is one that I look forward to. LOHAS is an acronym for lifestyles of health and sustainability. It refers to the substantial market for products and services, ethically delivered, for consumers especially concerned about wellness and corporate responsibility. It is the market at “the Intersection of Personal and Planetary Heath,” as Gwynne Rogers of the Natural Marketing Institute put it.

LOHAS attracts the friendliest assemblage of conferees I have encountered. Perhaps it is all the yoga and healthy eating that makes attendees so cordial. Perhaps it is their determination to make the world a better place. Often when people advocate “change,” what they mean is the other guy should change. At LOHAS, the notion of change is often aimed at oneself.

LOHAS features talented business leaders like Kevin Rutherford, CEO of Mrs. Meyers, and Kim Coupounas, co-founder of GoLite, sharing insights. Douglas Gayeton, author of the Lexicon of Sustainability, is using the power of words to “activate change and transform societies.” His vehicles include billboards, social media, pop up shows, and PBS short films.

And this year, as in previous years, marketing experts, like Suzanne Shelton of the Shelton Group, dissected the “green market” and offered useful counsel on how to attack it. For example, inspire don’t educate. Don’t make the problem seem so big an individual can’t do something about it.

Personal conviction is the trump card at LOHAS, and it this seems to explains the abounding goodwill at the conference.

The conference was held in Boulder, Colorado, which is one of those supremely livable small cities and thus an appealing destination. We were there just before the forest fires arrived. The Mountain West is dry country and, to my thinking, increasingly vulnerable to climate change.

This year, as in previous years, NativeEnergy was the carbon offset sponsor, providing offsets from our signature Help Build™ projects to balance the greenhouse gas pollution from conference-related travel, lodging, and operations.

>> Download the 2012 LOHAS Forum CO2 Report

 

About NativeEnergy
NativeEnergy is an expert provider of carbon offsets, renewable energy credits, and carbon accounting software. With NativeEnergy’s Help Build™ offsets, businesses and individuals can help finance the construction of wind, biogas, solar, and other carbon reduction projects with strong social and environmental benefits. Since 2000, NativeEnergy’s customers have helped build over 50 projects, reducing more than 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases, and the company has over 4 million tons under contract. All NativeEnergy carbon offsets undergo third-party validation and verification. Learn more at www.nativeenergy.com.

The New Normal: Get Used to the Heat

Thursday, August 16, 2012 by

What’s the biggest news about climate change recently?

The drought in the Midwest? The “conversion” of Nobel physicist and climate researcher Richard A. Mueller from skeptic to supporter of the science? Bill McKibben’s apocalyptic piece in the recent issue of Rolling Stone magazine? Or something else?

Does it matter?
 
Probably not.

What is noteworthy is that the drumbeat of studies, reports, and examples regarding the change continues... and dare I say, gets louder?

Sure the drought could simply be weather, not climate. A tornado in New England, where we just don’t get tornadoes, could also be an aberration in the weather. But nine of the 10 warmest years in the modern meteorological record have occurred since the year 2000. Can you say something is merely “the weather”?

At a recent Aspen Environment Forum, they referred to our situation today as “The New Normal.” Normal today was abnormal not long ago. Get used to it, “it” being heat, melting all over—glaciers, permafrost, Arctic ice, drought. (Researchers are now predicting that in a month we may see the lowest levels of Arctic ice.)

Professor Mueller completed a study earlier this year in which he confirmed to his own satisfaction that warming has occurred and continues. Dr. Mueller is a highly regarded scientist who had doubts about previous conclusions regarding warming. His study captured attention not only because of the results, but also because his work was funded in part by the Koch Foundation, a charitable extension of the climate-denying Koch brothers.

A little more than a week ago, Dr. Mueller went one step further. In the July 28 New York Times, he wrote that he has now concluded that humans are responsible for driving the warming, which will continue.

For many, including me, this statement was big news.

Bill McKibben is well known to climate activists. McKibben is a gifted writer and for some years has been an outspoken environmental advocate. He has written an alarming piece in Rolling Stone. McKibben’s piece is not news in the sense it includes new findings, but rather is an argument regarding the urgency of the situation.

I am old enough to have survived apocalyptic visions of Soviet atomic strikes in my youth. I’m not sure how huddling under my school desk was going to protect me from the “big one,” but that was the drill. I have survived an age when rivers literally burned and the air disintegrated concrete.

So I tend not to react strongly to disaster scenarios. I don’t deny their possibility. I just don’t head for cover under the table.

As a species we can be venal and reckless. We also often do the right thing. Ultimately we decide to do the right thing when it becomes apparent there is no other choice. Today, I don’t think we have a choice when it comes to climate.
 

About NativeEnergy
NativeEnergy is an expert provider of carbon offsets, renewable energy credits, and carbon accounting software. With NativeEnergy’s Help Build™ offsets, businesses and individuals can help finance the construction of wind, biogas, solar, and other carbon reduction projects with strong social and environmental benefits. Since 2000, NativeEnergy’s customers have helped build over 50 projects, reducing more than 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases, and the company has over 4 million tons under contract. All NativeEnergy carbon offsets undergo third-party validation and verification. Learn more at www.nativeenergy.com.

Original source

6 green travel tips from Sierra Club Outings and NativeEnergy

Wednesday, June 6, 2012 by

Vacations are a time to try new adventures, hang out with loved ones, or even find a quiet place to relax. But travel can also leave a footprint on the environment.

For several years, Sierra Club Outings and NativeEnergy have teamed up to provide eco-conscious travel options. Sierra Club offers hundreds of conservation-based vacations, from service trips to international expeditions. With NativeEnergy, adventurers can calculate the carbon emissions from their travel and purchase carbon offsets that counteract them.

Every action helps. Whether you hit the beach or the International Date Line, follow these simple tips to green your travel:

1. Plan low-impact activities
Exploring and enjoying the planet without leaving a large carbon footprint is easy. Focus on activities such as hiking, kayaking, nature walks, swimming, or snowshoeing that get you moving outdoors.

2. Choose group transportation
If you’re driving, plan a carpool. Some national parks even offer shuttle or train access. When visiting an urban area, opt for public transportation. The Earth will thank you, and so will your wallet.

3. Pack it in, pack it out
Everything you bring into the outdoors should leave with you. Plan meals carefully and repackage ingredients into reusable containers to minimize garbage. If you see litter on the trail, pick it up!

4. Volunteer
Give back to the wild places you love on a service trip. You’ll work on a variety of rewarding tasks, like repairing trails and removing invasive plants, with plenty of time to relax: www.sierraclub.org/outings/national/service.aspx.

5. Stay local
Many of the best trips are right in your backyard! Unsure where to start? Check your local Sierra Club Outings chapter for a list of awesome and mostly-free adventures near you: www.sierraclub.org/outings/chapter/.

6. Offset your emissions
Help finance the construction of wind, solar, and other carbon-reducing projects to offset your travel emissions with NativeEnergy. Calculate your travel footprint at www.nativeenergy.com/travel-carbon-calculator.html.

 

About Sierra Club Outings
Sierra Club Outings provides environmentally-friendly outdoor adventures—from Tahoe to Tibet—for people of all ages, abilities, budgets, and interests. With more than 100 years of experience, we’re the oldest outfitter of environmental travel. Visit us at outings.sierraclub.org/national for trip listings, detailed itineraries, and other resources to select the adventure that’s right for you.

About NativeEnergy
NativeEnergy is an expert provider of carbon offsets, renewable energy credits, and carbon accounting software. With NativeEnergy’s Help Build™ offsets, businesses and individuals can help finance the construction of wind, biogas, solar, and other carbon reduction projects with strong social and environmental benefits. Since 2000, NativeEnergy’s customers have helped build over 50 projects, reducing more than 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases, and the company has over 4 million tons under contract. All NativeEnergy carbon offsets undergo third-party validation and verification. Learn more at www.nativeenergy.com.

Original source

Reducing supply chain carbon emissions – where do you start?

Monday, April 23, 2012 by

Over the past few years, we have watched companies focus more and more on reducing carbon emissions in their supply chains. We have attended the same conferences that you attend, we have read the same reports and white papers, we have analyzed the same types of CO2 emissions data, and we agree: a large percentage of your corporate emissions—and therefore large opportunities to reduce your footprint—reside in your supply chain.

Wal-Mart famously has begun a campaign to require their suppliers to reduce emissions. Timberland is working with some of its competitors and the Outdoor Industry Association to improve processes in their supply chains. Stonyfield Farm measured cow burps and learned that the cows were their largest emitters. The coffee industry is taking a long, hard look at issues in and around its supply.

With the knowledge that addressing emissions in a supply chain can be overwhelming and complex, we have developed an integrated approach for companies. Our original model of developing and marketing carbon offset projects now includes strategies to identify and fund opportunities in our clients’ supply chains. So far, we have used our knowledge, experience, and connections to create emissions reductions by:

  • Improving efficiency and re-purposing waste on the farms that supply milk and crops to our food industry clients
  • Providing safe, clean drinking water, preventing deforestation, and encouraging reforestation in the regions that grow coffee for our coffee industry clients

The excitement of discovering new ways to reduce carbon emissions—and realizing how the programs can also benefit employees and growers in a company’s supply chain—was particularly evident following a recent trip by members of our project development team to coffee growing regions in Africa. During this trip, they oversaw the installation of water filtration systems in the homes of people who work on coffee plantations. Normally, these workers have to burn wood to boil and purify their water. But the new filters provide clean drinking water without the need for combustion, which improves the air quality in their homes, conserves trees, and, of course, reduces greenhouse gas pollution.

During the trip to Africa, the project development team also met with one of our partner NGO organizations to begin evaluating the cost and carbon reduction benefits associated with planting shade trees in and around coffee groves. This project is now being modeled and we expect it will be implemented in 2013.  

There are many opportunities for organizations to reduce their carbon emissions both onsite and off—some that are obvious, and some that take time to uncover. But one thing is clear: reducing greenhouse gas pollution is an important goal. Over the coming months, we look forward to seeing how we can utilize our expertise to further reduce emissions within corporate supply chains.  

If you have an opportunity or idea you would like to explore, we want to hear from you. Contact us at 800-924-6826 or business@nativeenergy.com.

 

NativeEnergy is an expert provider of carbon offsets, renewable energy credits, and carbon accounting software. With NativeEnergy’s Help Build™ offsets, businesses and individuals can help finance the construction of wind, biogas, solar, and other carbon reduction projects with strong social and environmental benefits. Since 2000, NativeEnergy’s customers have helped build over 50 projects, reducing more than 2.5 million tons of greenhouse gases, and the company has over 4 million tons under contract. All NativeEnergy carbon offsets undergo third-party validation and verification. Learn more at www.nativeenergy.com.

Original source

Sustainable collaboration: how LOHAS companies are reducing carbon emissions together

Wednesday, March 28, 2012 by

Project Supporters and participants dedicate the Wewoka Biogas ProjectMany leading companies have realized that sustainability is good for the environment, their customers, and even the bottom line. Better still, by teaming up with other businesses for green initiatives, companies can achieve a greater impact. Through one recent collaboration, NativeEnergy’s Project Supporter Program, 25 brands are working together to reduce greenhouse gas emissions and help build renewable energy and carbon-reducing projects across the U.S.

These businesses—which include LOHAS companies like eBay, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, EILEEN FISHER, Aveda, and Clif Bar—purchased Help Build™ carbon offsets to fund three projects.

The Iowa Farms Wind Project features the construction of two 1.6 MW wind turbines on family farms in northern Iowa. It’s expected to reduce about 9,000 tons of carbon emissions per year. Plus, it will provide power to about 5,200 nearby homes and an important source of income for the farm owners.

Project Supporters: Aveda, EILEEN FISHER, Clif Bar, Designtex, Touring Green, Reverb, Ben & Jerry’s

The Wewoka Biogas Project in Oklahoma powers a family-owned brick plant by using methane from a landfill. It captures and destroys the methane—a potent greenhouse gas—that would have been emitted otherwise. The discounted biogas also helps keeps the brick plant in business.

Project Supporters: eBay, Esurance, Designtex, Green Mountain Coffee Roasters, Eco-Products, Clif Bar, Brighter Planet, Reverb, Vital Choice, Touring Green, Presidio, College of the Atlantic

The Northeast Farm Separation Project in Pennsylvania cuts methane emissions on a family-owned dairy farm by separating volatile solids from manure. It also benefits farmers and helps reduce agricultural runoff.

Project Supporters: Ben & Jerry’s, The Brick Companies, Carlisle & Company, Comedy Central, RLP Capital, Credit Union Cherry Blossom Run, Pax World, and ABR, Inc.

Not only will these projects reduce greenhouse gas emissions—by a total sum of 400,000 metric tons—but they also help on a smaller scale by supporting local economies and family farms. So by participating, these corporate leaders have made a difference in the daily life of countless people.

The modern world is increasingly obsessed with consumption. We buy things we don’t need, which leads to waste. Fortunately, these companies prove that the corporate world is conscious of environmental issues and motivated to take action—on their own and collaboratively. In this case, success can even drive sustainability.

To learn more about the Project Supporter Program, visit http://www.nativeenergy.com/psp.html.