Daily Green Wrap-up 24.August, 2012

In the winter of 2012, carbon emissions belched forth by the world’s largest economy hit their lowest levels in 20 years. MIT highlighted the EIA study that bore the good news earlier this month, and it looks like the trend is likely to continue.
In a culture where food is readily accesible to many of us, we’re busy throwing it away. In fact, according to a new report released by the Natural Resources Defense Council, 40% of our food supply goes to waste every year, accounting for $165 billion. That is at the same time as hunger and poverty are on the rise, with one in seven American households dealing with food insecurity, as well as significant issues of drought and skyrocketing food prices.
The Visayas Islands in the Philippines are gradually embracing renewable energy, and the capital city has just inaugurated its first green building – Iloilo City Hall. The building was recently unveiled by President Benigno S. Aquino III, and it features a roof topped with solar panels that will save $17,000 per year and prevent 36 metric tons of carbon dioxide being pumped into the atmosphere.
Many people cite safety as the biggest reason they’re not commuting via bicycle, self included. Don’t cue the violins, I’m lucky to have had a full recovery from the crash I’m really sick of talking about, and I know my own road rage had some part in it. However, if seeing a cyclist in a wheelchair tugs at your heartstrings, go right ahead and urge your local Assembly member to vote yes on 1464. Twenty one states in the country already have similar laws for passing cyclists. Earlier this year, Senate Bill 1464 was passed by the California State Senate. In September, the Assembly will vote on this critical traffic safety measure.
Fruit smoothie chain Jamba Juice has unveiled a timeline for eliminating its use of Styrofoam cups after receiving a petition started by a 10-year-old girl.
The number of electric car offerings continue to grow at a rapid pace. The options are getting more diverse and the price is coming down a bit. Just 7 EVs were available in 2011, but there will be 16 by the end of 2012 and an additional 19 models are scheduled for 2013 and beyond. New models launching this summer and fall include the Audi R8 E-Tron, Fiat 500 EV, Ford C-MAX Energi, Honda Fit EV, Smart ED, Tesla Model S, Toyota Prius Plug-in, and the Toyota RAV4 EV.

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