- Politicians do a lot of talking about greenhouse gas emissions and global warming, but despite the rhetoric , the president of the United States has a hefty carbon footprint, between Air Force 1, military cargo planes, White House electricity and natural gas use, and helicopter and automobile travel, it piles up to 41,000 tons; via Red Green and Blue.
- However, Secretary of State Hillary Rodham Clinton says the U.S. should lead the negotiations toward a global treaty on climate change. Meeting with other countries, accounting for 75% of emissions, Clinton insists there is no longer any questions that growing concentrations of atmospheric carbon dioxide are warming the planet, which can propose economic, health and security challenges; The New York Times reports.
- Speaking of public health, greenhouse gases contain harmful compounds like methane, nitrous oxide, hydrofluorocarbons, perfluorocarbons and sulfur hexafluoride that threaten human health. Additionally, higher temperatures can cause droughts, floods, wildfires, rising sea level and disruptions of agriculture; from Fresh Greens.
- Now, believe it or not, pesky email spam hurts the environment too. When people spend time deleting junk and searching for legitimate email they burn more energy. In the United States, 2.4 million homes using electricity equates to the greenhouse gas emissions from 3.1 million passengers cars, sucking down 2 billion gallons of gas; Cnet News explains.
- Plastic shopping bags are another scourge. It seems like nowadays everyone shops with those reusable bags, but the plastic bag industry has a plan. Create plastic bags made with 40% recycled materials and do it by 2015. This will require manufacturers to invest $50 million to revamp operations and improve collection of discarded bags; via TreeHugger.
- Recycling plastics bags is one thing, but dirty diapers. My goodness! Cities like Oakland, California and Toronto, Canada currently compost garbage like animal poop, kitty litter, dirty diapers and sanitary products. Toronto officials insist the process is completely safe and all this icky stuff will be used on farmland and public parks; from Green Inc.
Image credit: NCinDC