The Green Wrap-up 10.December, 2012

Spend a princely sum on a top-of-the-line Tesla Model S, which has an 85-kWh battery pack, and you can get an EPA-certified 265 miles on a full charge. If you opt for the lower-cost (and delayed) 60-kWh version, the EPA has now calculated you’ll get 208 miles.
Consumer advocate par excellence Consumer Reports has recently published a piece on the difference between official EPA fuel economy numbers and real-world testing numbers for a variety of hybrids. Most models proved to perform a bit worse in CR’s tests than in the EPA’s, but the Ford C-MAX hybrid and Ford Fusion hybrid topped the list with gaps of 10 and 8 MPGs. Apparently this was enough to raise concerns at the EPA: “The Environmental Protection Agency said Saturday it will review claims that two new Ford Motor Co. vehicles aren’t getting the advertised 47 miles per gallon.”
…They seem amusing on the first day of Christmas, daft on the second, embarrassing on the third. By the twelfth they’re in landfill. For thirty seconds of dubious entertainment, or a hedonic stimulus that lasts no longer than a nicotine hit, we commission the use of materials whose impacts will ramify for generations.
  • (Ally)GreenJoyment: I love an intelligent rant! This reminds me of the time that Detroit journalist M.L. Elrick visited one of my college journalism classes. One thing that he said really resonated with me. He told us that, in part, what makes a good journalist is a “healthy sense of moral outrage.” This article denouncing crass consumerism is engagingly written, it’s passionate, and it’s depressingly true.
These are Greenway Townhouses designed by Arbor South Architecture and built by Arbor South Construction (the same group behind The Sage, a high-scoring LEED Platinum project in Eugene). Construction just barely finished, and Arbor South will now focus on renting the 11 units of about 950 square feet each. Greenway Townhouses have been certified Earth Advantage Platinum, according to Bill Randall, principal at Arbor South, and will target LEED Gold certification.
…For Shepard, the owner of New Forest Farm and a farming consultant, the long-lived perennial trees are a central feature in the ideal farm landscape.
As an international community, our collective failures on climate change are having critical consequences. Today climate change has become one of the major challenges to the basic human rights to life, food, health, water, housing and self-determination.
…On Black Friday, he penned an open letter to friends and family asking them to get his two young daughters nothing for Christmas, and explaining that he and his wife, Tara, are trying to put the focus on special holiday experiences rather than just amassing more stuff. The letter attracted the attention of the TV news program 20/20, which included Greg and his family in its Friday evening holiday extravaganza. The name of 20/20’s segment: “Christmas Extremists.”
Terrariums make great holiday gifts, so we’ve collected 10 unique ideas for building a beautiful plant-scape in repurposed containers. Terrariums can be made with either leafy plants life ferns, or with water-storing varieties, such as succulents or cacti. Because terrarium plants need little soil and water, they can be made from containers of all sizes. Check out these suggestion for tiny (and even wearable) DIY terrarium gifts!

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