Welcome to Carbon News Monthly for January 31, 2010 where we find out what others are up to in the world of carbon-footprint-reduction.

Progress At Nike

This footwear manufacturer is reporting progress made in 2009 in comparison to 2008. This comes from their "Social Responsibility" report released recently.

The progress in reducing their carbon footprint also comes in spite of increased business activity, in case it's misunderstood that business is down. In fact, their business is up, and still progress has been made.

To what do they attribute their progress in carbon footprint reduction?

They no longer purchase carbon offsets. In other words, they do not carry on with certain functions, and make up for it outside the business by writing a cheque. They have chosen to focus on improvement strictly within the business, which includes a program in place to monitor the performance of their factories, provide energy training to their employees, improvement to their own company computer software through automated shutdown programs, and they have found that the impact on business travel has improved by focusing on video-conferencing and teleconferencing.

They have water-programs in place, and 2/3 of Nike suppliers are now compliant with these requirements. They have plans to implement programs which will return all water used back into communities in a clean and drinkable form.

Meat-free Day At Exeter College, UK

In light of the meat industry stats on carbon emissions, students at Exeter have voted to support a motion for one meatless day per week. Not only will this give them incentive to help the environment by reducing C02, but it will generate a little extra money in their wallets as well, as prices at the school will come down due to the savings.

Exeter College purchases and serves a huge amount of product, which in turn creates a gigantic carbon footprint. By going meatless one day per week, this will reduce by about 15%, and other universities are joining in this idea at their schools as well. They hope the idea will spread significantly, and it probably will. When you consider that this reduction is equal to the carbon footprint of 8 individual people, that is significant.

The meatless day will affect the water footprint as well.

There can never be too many stories about what the "students" of the world are doing. Afterall, isn't it great that these stories and thought processes are getting the push from the young people more and more?

Heard of Sourcemap?

Read an interesting article on "Sourcemap." If you haven't heard about it, it's basically a tool that could be used on a website that tracks the carbon footprint of resources used to make a product or hold an event.

This would involve using Google Maps and an open source community as a way to research the supply chains behind everyday products. To make it a little clearer, I'll use the example given.

"If you wanted to know the distance your IKEA bed really travelled, before it gets to you, this will tell you."

So, since there are so many businesses out there laying claim to social responsibility and telling us that their company doesn't impact the environment, maybe they wouldn't hesitate to place this gadget on their website? It's a great way to prove to your customers you are doing what you say you are. This gadget would measure quite a number of variables, and I would be very interested in how many wouldn't be afraid to do this.

It would certainly keep everyone honest, that's for sure.

Happy Valentine's Day on the 14th to everyone.

You can reduce your carbon footprint by:

Celebrating at home; make your meal and treats organic

Send e-cards to friends

Go with fair-trade organic flowers if you buy gifts, or better yet, purchase a houseplant

This is a good start.

As others strive to do their part towards green-living-improvements, let's continue to do ours!

Until next time,



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