Cruise Lines Sewage Report Cards

DisneyMagicdepartsCanaveral

Friends of the Earth recently released their 2012 Cruise Ship Report Card, which evaluates major ship lines on their pollution levels. The report covers 15 major cruise lines, including the Disney Cruise Line and Royal Caribbean International, as well as 148 of their collective cruise ships. All were graded in the areas of Sewage Treatment, Air Pollution Reduction, and Water Quality Compliance. The report also recorded any changes, improvements or decline, of those graded in 2010. For a ship to be considered efficient in sewage treatment, it had to possess the most advanced system of sewage and water treatment. Ensuring that waste… read more

Responsible Fireworks Use

Responsible Fireworks

The year is almost over, and if the Mayan prophecy is wrong we will soon be celebrating the dawn of the impending New Year. There are many ways in which different cultures of the world celebrate this event, relevant to this article is the universal use of fireworks. Fireworks are a beautiful spectacle to observe, the fire showers that light up the sky bring a feeling of happiness and excitement to spectators. However, we need to consider the impact that fireworks have on the environment. The first concern in this regard is the effect that fireworks have on animals, the… read more

That Special Place

That special place

I first encountered wild nature in Australia when I was four years old. My mum and her sister, Aunty Karen, took me on an excursion to Kondalilla Falls atop the Blackall Range in Queensland’s Sunshine Coast. The dense foliage and fast-moving water was unlike anything I had ever seen. I can remember running along the forest track and being filled with such bliss that I proclaimed, “I want to live here. Please can we live here”. But my mother and Aunty didn’t share my enthusiasm to build a home in the rainforest. I cried in the car all the way… read more

EU Shark Finning Ban

Shark finning ban

After 6 years of campaigning and debate, the European Parliament voted to close loopholes in the European Union ban on shark finning. Shark finning is slicing off a shark’s fins and discarding the body at sea. Pretty gruesome! The EU, which is one of the largest exporters of shark fins to Asia, banned finning in 2003, but in a loophole, companies with freezer vessels applied for special fishing permits which would allowed them to continue if they landed the fins separately from the bodies. After years of debate, the Members of the European Parliament finally voted overwhelmingly in favor of the… read more

Welcome Boost in Jobs

Job growth in solar industry

At a time when a primary concern for the U.S. is jobs, unemployment, and underemployment, news of job growth is always good and welcomed. Further, news of job growth in an industry plagued by setbacks and challenges can flip an industry from crippled confidence to burgeoning. On November 2nd, The Solar Foundation (TSF) announced encouraging statistics showing despite recent false starts and layoffs, the U.S. solar industry is expanding nearly six times more than that of the overall economy. The report reiterates and adds to the credibility of earlier studies suggesting a similar boom in the solar industry, though the… read more

Saving Diversity

Saving all species

The world is a theatre in which our lives may play out, and it is our job to set the stage. As with any production of substance its embellishments must serve a purpose beyond aesthetic pleasure. When applying this to real life we must realize the biodiversity that furnishes our world transcends the virtue of beauty, it is integral to the cycle that allows life as we know it to function – and must be protected if we wish for the production to run smoothly. Perhaps as some leading roles discard those of less notoriety, if of equal importance, supporting… read more

Florida Leads The Way

Florida Leads The Way

In early December last year, Florida residents were able to finally see a rare event in politics, especially when it comes to the environment. At the Southeast Florida Climate Leadership Summit (SFCLS), local government officials from four counties gathered to discuss how to mitigate and adapt to climate change and its impacts. In this “purple” state, government officials came together in a bipartisan manner to address climate change. Mayors, members of Congress, county commissioners and officials in charge of water issues in the state were at the Summit, and their political identifications and allegiances were across the board. It makes… read more

Executive Power

Executive Powers

It has become abundantly clear there is a dire necessity for action on combatting climate change. Whether that action is in the form of environmental policy reform and regulation, or energy policy reform, one thing is clear: maintaining the status quo is a recipe for disaster. However, the president is not a miracle worker, and is also not a solitary worker. The Constitution requires a balance of power, thus inter-dependency between the three branches, which is a double-edged blade, to say the least. The checks-and-balances system allows for moderation in the government, which is responsible, but it also allows for lack of… read more

A Change In The Wind

A Change in the Wind

A couple of days before Thanksgiving last year, the Red State Renewable Alliance (RSRA) gave wind power supporters something for which to be thankful. Led by John Feehery, a Republican Washington insider, the RSRA backed wind power as it fights for a wind power production tax credit extension, despite the Republican Party talking points promoting the contrary. Feehery has had stints as the communications director for former House Speaker Dennis Hastert, along with former Majority Leader Tom DeLay. Individual elected Republicans have stood up in support of the wind energy tax credit, and have found themselves aligned with groups such… read more

Urban Bee Keeping

Urban bee keeping

The Opera House in Paris has kept bees for quite some time. The Boston Sea Port Hotel houses hundreds of thousands of bees on its rooftop which help pollinate hundreds of local gardens. Urban bee keeping is a necessity and can help with lower cost of a healthier diet with rooftop gardens. The issue with urban bee keeping is the fear that bees can be a nuisance. Bees actually help to pollinate and in turn create honey. This helps the environment especially in urban cities where metal rooftops grace the open skies. Rather than ugly rooftops we can replace them… read more