While solar power chargers for cell phones or GPS devices are not new to techies, a new solar technology is now making recharging your phone as easy as grabbing your beach tote. G24 Innovations, the company that is licensing the technology, says that dye-sensitized cells will be used to provide power for various portable devices from e-book readers and cell phones to wireless sensors and keyboards. The solar cells will most likely be made into thin, flexible panels that will then be stitched into various consumer products such as e-book covers, tennis bags, backpacks, golf, shopping and beach bags. Individuals will then be able to plug their phones or music players into the bags using a USB cord. Solar panels on the bags will have 11 cells each, and wiring will attach the panel to a battery pack in the bag. The technology uses a photosensitive dye to start its energy production, similar to the way leaves use chlorophyll to begin photosynthesis. Currently, most photovoltaic cells are still based on silicon or related inorganic materials, not dyes. While the technology works best in direct sunlight (taking six to eight sunny hours outside for the panel to fuel the charger), the cells have even shown to generate voltage from moonlight.
Monday, 08 February 2010 16:16

Be My Valentine: Organic Bouquet

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6 days til Valentine's Day! This Valentine's Day, show your special someone you care with a beautiful floral arrangement from Organic Bouquet.  They are a mission-based company that cares about environmental, social, and economic Organic Bouquetsustainability.  With every purchase, their customers are improving the life of a grower or artisan.  They are also involved in several community projects around the globe and holds partnerships with numerous charitable organizations. With beautiful floral arrangements to celebrate Valentine's Day, Organic Bouquet is sure to have something for you.  They even carry wine to add that special touch to your delivery!  Check them out to make sure it's legal to ship wine to your state, and with their partnership with Carbonfund.org, your shipment is carbon neutral through their support of third-party validated reforestation projects.
Monday, 08 February 2010 16:14

Canada Commits to 17% CO2 Reductions

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The Canadian Government has officially informed the United Nations (UN) that the country is committed to reducing emissions 17% by 2020. The UN requested that all participating countries at the climate meetings in Copenhagen commit to a 17% carbon emissions reduction target from a 2005 baseline. Canada's carbon footprint in 2006 was measured at 544,680,000 metric tons of CO2. Meaning that a 17% reduction would result in about 92,595,600 fewer tons of CO2 emissions every year for the nation of about 34 million. This is not the first time that Canada has made a strong commitment to emissions reductions to the UN. Canada signed on to the Kyoto Protocol in 1997, committing the nation to CO2 reductions from a 1990 baseline. In spite of this commitment, Canadian emissions continued to rise to an extent. The US has pledged to cut its greenhouse gas emissions by 17 percent by 2020 from 2005 levels, though the commitment is contingent on passing legislation by Congress.
Monday, 08 February 2010 15:50

Automate Your Board Reviews with BoardEvals

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BoardEvals’ web-based evaluation solutions help organizations perform more efficient, effective and thorough board evaluations.  BoardEvals BoardEvalsreplaces the ad-hoc, manual processes used by most organizations today with an automated, standardized board evaluation process that saves time and expenses, while at the same time improving corporate governance practices.  They enable more thorough board evaluations by incorporating the full range of board evaluation activities, including board self-evaluation, committee self-evaluation, and 360 degree evaluations of individual board members. Not only does this more automated process save time, resources, and expenses, but BoardEvals is a Carbonfund.org CarbonFree® Partner.  They are offsetting their office, business travel, and employee commuting emissions by supporting third-party validated renewable energy carbon reduction projects.  Interested in learning how BoardEvals can help improve efficiency in your organization? Visit BoardEvals now!
7 days til Valentine's Day! Earth EssentialsEarth Essentials has been making natural body care products for over 25 years. Their products are great for anyone looking for quality products, and particularly for those with skin sensitivities, allergies, or environmental irritants. Many of their products are fragrance free, none of them are tested on animals, and the majority of their products are vegan! A Carbonfund.org partner, Earth Essentials is committed to providing environmentally-friendly skin and hair care products that don't sacrifice on quality or their eco-friendly philosophy. If you are looking for all-natural hair or skin products for your loved one this Valentine's day, treat yourself using the power of Mother Nature with Earth Essentials! Fore more information on all of their anti-aging, face, hair, and for-men products, please visit Earth Essentials.
Friday, 05 February 2010 19:46

Be My Valentine: Flowerpetal.com

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flowerpetal_logoNothing says Valentine’s Day like a gorgeous bouquet of fresh flowers. If you’re looking for flowers for that someone special try CarbonFree® Partner Flowerpetal.com.  A progressive online flower and gift company that services the U.S. and Canada, Flowerpetal.com has gone to great lengths to calculate and offset the emissions associated with their business operations, including the shipping of their flowers, by supporting our renewable energy, energy efficiency and renewable energy carbon reduction projects. Flowerpetal.com’s mission is to make sure each flower arrangement, plant and gift is delivered on-time, every time, and exactly the way it is requested.  Their orders are delivered via a network of exceptional local florists.  They even offer same-day delivery until 2 p.m. in the recipient’s time zone.  To place your order visit www.flowerpetal.com.
A new report released by scientists states that the hole in the atmosphere's ozone layer is slowly mending. While that news may sound encouraging, some scientists warn that the repairing hole may ironically further contribute to global warming. According to research, the hole led to the formation of moist, radiant clouds that are shielding the Antarctic from carbon emission temperature increases. But, as co-author of the report, Ken Carslow, warns “the recovery of the hole will reverse that,” and essentially accelerate warming in the Southern Hemisphere. The report was based off of a new, University of Leeds study using recorded meteorological data spanning the course of two decades. The study showed that the hole generated high-speed winds that caused sea salt to be swept into the atmosphere leading to the production of the moist, reflective clouds. However, some scientists think that the wind speeds were not generated by the ozone layer’s hole, but caused by emissions of greenhouse gases. Even as the ozone layer continues to recover, greenhouse gas emissions are expected to expand causing a rise in temperatures. The temperature rise would cause wind speeds to increase over time and have the same cloud-forming effect the ozone hole has now.
Thursday, 04 February 2010 20:10

Be My Valentine: Cameron Hughes Wine

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wn210 days til Valentine's Day! Employing a no-frills business model, Cameron Hughes Wine delivers some of the best values in the industry.  Since 2004, the maverick negociant has offered wines from around the world with no bottle exceeding $22 . "But our business relies heavily on shipping and delivering wines from across the country and around the world,” says Cameron Hughes. In partnering with Carbonfund.org, the company's emissions from office use, travel, freight, and shipping activities are offset by supporting carbon reduction projects worldwide. In 2009, Cameron Hughes Wine reduced 282 metric tons of carbon dioxide or the equivalent of 29,000 gallons of gasoline. “We are committed to innovation, taking advantage of every opportunity to control costs. Partnering with Carbonfund.org is merely an extension of that, and it's an easy choice,” notes Hughes. "We stake our reputation on a great value. What could be more valuable than protecting the people and places we love.” To celebrate this partnership, Cameron Hughes Wine is excited to offer a 15% discount on all wine purchases through February 15! You can visit www.chwine.com and enter coupon code CARBON15 to receive 15% off your purchase.
Costco.com now sells the world’s first CarbonFree® Certified carbon neutral paper shredder, made by GoECOlife™. The paper shredder has earned Carbonfund.org’s CarbonFree® Certified Label, the world's leading carbon neutral product label and the first in the U.S. To earn the CarbonFree® Product Certification, the GoECOlife™ SOHO 8-Sheet ULTRA-QUIET™ Paper Shredder underwent a rigorous product life-cycle assessment performed by WSP Group to determine the carbon footprint. In addition to using energy-saving technology, GoECOlife™ reduced the remaining carbon footprint through support of Carbonfund.org’s third-party validated renewable energy, energy efficiency and reforestation projects. “We put our shredder through Carbonfund.org’s CarbonFree® Product Certification because of its rigor and third party life-cycle assessment,” said Sam Lee, spokesperson for GoECOlife™. “The Certification provides a credible way for consumers to differentiate products that minimize their impact on climate change and the environment.” The personal GoECOlife™ shredder utilizes an energy-saving technology that prevents vampire energy waste when the shredder is not in use and plugged in. The shredder is manufactured with materials that meet Restriction of Hazardous Substances standards (RoHS-compliant) and is packaged with recycled, partially recycled and/or biodegradable materials. The shredder is available at this link on Costco.com (online only); also, Costco.com is running a promotion through February on the paper shredder! The promo includes a $20 instant rebate, a 12-pack of CarbonFree® Certified GoECOlife™ Lubricant Sheets, an “Envy Green” Reusable Canvas Tote and a “Green Facts” Mouse Pad. You can also learn more about Carbonfund.org’s CarbonFree® Certified Label and Product Certification by visiting www.carbonfund.org/products.
Wednesday, 03 February 2010 20:02

Be My Valentine: Erica Weiner Jewelry

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erica weiner charm11 days til Valentine's Day! “They do not love that do not show their love.” — William Shakespeare, The Two Gentleman of Verona, 1590-1591 Show your love for both your sweetheart and Mother Earth this Valentine’s Day with one of Erica Weiner Jewelry’s charming and environmentally-conscious creations. As a Carbonfund.org partner, Manhattan-based designer Erica Weiner reduces her business’s carbon footprint by 300 percent each year by donating to energy efficiency, reforestation, and renewable energy projects in the US and abroad through Carbonfund.org’s carbon reduction program. But of course, her business's commitment doesn’t stop there. Nearly half of the materials that go into her quirky baubles and jewels are vintage, sourced from dead stocks, and crafted from repurposed materials — and all are hand-refurbished, hand-made, and packaged for sale using reused materials. For her special edition 2010 Valentine’s Day collection, Erica Weiner drew from her treasure trove of hundreds of ’70s-era heart-shaped charms, lockets, and chains she’s salvaged over the years from vintage shops and overstock warehouses around New England.  The resulting bracelets, earrings, and necklaces are all absolutely fanciful and one-of-a-kind, all offering a funky mix of shapes, colors, and metals. (My fave:  The Limited Edition V-Day Vintage Heart Charm Bracelet on Pink Chain.) Don’t like hearts? Check out her Double Initial Gold Vermeil Letterpress Necklace, which will be individually crafted for you and your Valentine — bearing each of your initials — by combining antique moveable iron type pieces originally used on hand-cranked Vandercook Proof Presses. Visit the Erica Weiner Jewelry store on Etsy.com to see the whole Valentine’s Day collection. You can also locate a boutique in your area that sells Erica Weiner Jewelry or view her list of merchants by state.