By Kenny Stancil
Despite the difficulties associated with the Covid-19 pandemic, the world added a record amount of new renewable energy capacity in 2020, according to data released Monday by the International Renewable Energy Agency.
<div id="1e049" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="6a506a86dfdd474d0074cc1618a22064"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1379008959231762436" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">The growth of renewables in 2020 tells a remarkable story of resilience & hope. Despite the uncertainties,… https://t.co/PXycDqano8</div> — Francesco La Camera (@Francesco La Camera)<a href="https://twitter.com/flacamera/statuses/1379008959231762436">1617616331.0</a></blockquote></div><p>Referring to 2020 as "the start of the decade of renewables," La Camera noted that "costs are falling, clean tech markets are growing, and never before have the benefits of the energy transition been so clear."</p><p>Though hydropower—responsible for more than 43% of the world's total renewable energy generation capacity—still constitutes the largest global source of clean energy, other sources are catching up; solar and wind contributed 127 GW and 111 GW of new installations, respectively, together accounting for 91% of the growth in renewables in 2020.</p>
<div id="97d02" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="9a631f8526f6a868a2f468d0e889fc2a"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1378992308209786881" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">🟢JUST RELEASED Renewable Capacity Statistics 2021 report by @IRENA shows how #renewableenergy performed in 2020 - t… https://t.co/VPwW1snMcL</div> — IRENA (@IRENA)<a href="https://twitter.com/IRENA/statuses/1378992308209786881">1617612361.0</a></blockquote></div>
Kids are the ones that will be inheriting the world from us. Getting them invested early in protecting the environment will ensure that their curiosity and interest will live on once they become adults.
Figuring out how to introduce the concept of renewable energy to kids can be tricky. The more significant challenge comes down to getting kids interested and excited versus putting them on the receiving end of another lecture.
It will take a bit of planning and creativity, but there are ways to get children interested in renewable energy even at a young age.
Kidney stones are hard deposits that form in the kidneys. They are produced when minerals and salts, most commonly calcium oxalate, crystallize in the kidneys, creating hard, crystal-like stones. If you've ever had a kidney stone, we're sure you won't want to repeat the experience!
Ideally, you never want to have to go through this painful process. Fortunately, several steps and natural treatments can be used to reduce the chances of suffering them. In this article we'll examine how these annoying solidifications originate and how to treat them effectively and quickly with natural remedies.
Beijing skies turned yellow Monday as air pollution reached hazardous levels after the worst sandstorm in a decade coincided with an industrial boom following last year's COVID lockdown.
<div id="fa97c" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="cf710918b822063fac385bee401b6520"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1371266848482676737" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Beijing is what an ecological crisis looks like. After two weeks of smog and static air, strong wind carries a sand… https://t.co/SkIiTHJvJG</div> — Li Shuo_Greenpeace (@Li Shuo_Greenpeace)<a href="https://twitter.com/LiShuo_GP/statuses/1371266848482676737">1615770468.0</a></blockquote></div>
<div id="feac8" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="8d3fecec182eb3800451b7985c947580"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1371251054948409346" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Normal vs. today #Beijing https://t.co/koo2f7NjSF</div> — 霍炳宗 (@霍炳宗)<a href="https://twitter.com/PaddyFok/statuses/1371251054948409346">1615766702.0</a></blockquote></div>
- Could Fracking Spark a Modern-Day Dust Bowl? - EcoWatch ›
- Modern-Day Dust Bowls Devastate Regions Throughout the World ... ›
- A Massive Dust Cloud Is Moving From the Sahara to the U.S. This ... ›
<div id="9b820" class="rm-shortcode" data-rm-shortcode-id="cdbcb237d30bb9f384ddd01ee0f0c9e0"><blockquote class="twitter-tweet twitter-custom-tweet" data-twitter-tweet-id="1361711788493074432" data-partner="rebelmouse"><div style="margin:1em 0">Texas is frozen solid as folks are left w/ no power to stay safe & warm. This is a perfect example of the need fo… https://t.co/Tktn0F89t4</div> — Steve Daines (@Steve Daines)<a href="https://twitter.com/SteveDaines/statuses/1361711788493074432">1613492364.0</a></blockquote></div><p>According to The Electric Reliability Council of Texas (ERCOT), which represents 90 percent of the state's electric load, wind turbine outages were responsible for less than 13 percent of Texas' lost generation. The majority of the power outages can instead be attributed to <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/tag/coal" target="_blank">coal</a> and gas, a local news outlet <a href="https://www.kxan.com/news/texas/are-frozen-wind-turbines-to-blame-for-texas-power-outages/" target="_blank">reported</a>.</p><p>The Montana senator's tweet included a viral image of a helicopter spraying liquid to defrost a frozen wind turbine. According to the image's caption, fossil fuels powered the helicopter while the liquid it sprayed contained them. "Keep that in mind when thinking how 'green' windmills are," <a href="https://twitter.com/laurenboebert/status/1361664647661780992" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Rep. Lauren Boebert</a> from Colorado tweeted, gaining thousands of retweets, <a href="https://earther.gizmodo.com/viral-image-claiming-to-show-a-helicopter-de-icing-texa-1846279287" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">Earther reported</a>. This same image has been <a href="https://twitter.com/lukelegate/status/1361149723072208896" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">shared</a> by Luke Legate, a prominent oil and gas consultant, Earther added, although it is misleading. </p><p>While helicopters are used to defrost wind turbines, the image is from Sweden in 2014, not present-day Texas, said Brian Kahn, managing editor of Earther. The photo is originally from a Swedish study on de-icing wind turbines using hot water. Now the image is being used "to argue against clean energy in the U.S," Kahn wrote. "It's a rather silly claim."</p><p>Wind turbines in Texas did indeed fail during the frigid winter temperatures, losing about 4.5 gigawatts of capacity according to The New York Times. But as of Monday afternoon, 26 of the 34 gigawatts of ERCOT's grid that went offline were from thermal sources such as gas and coal, <a href="https://newrepublic.com/article/161386/conservatives-wind-turbines-killing-people-texas-blackouts" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">The New Republic reported</a>. </p>
- Which States Make It Easy for the Advancement of Renewable ... ›
- 4 U.S. Cities That Have Gone 100% Renewable - EcoWatch ›
- How Renewable Energy Could Power Your State - EcoWatch ›
- How the Texas Electricity System Produced Low-Cost Power but Left Residents Out in the Cold - EcoWatch ›
- Texas Grid Operator Overcharged Power Companies $16 Billion During Winter Storm - EcoWatch ›
- The Science Behind Frozen Wind Turbines – and How to Keep Them Spinning Through the Winter - EcoWatch ›
- IRENA Report Predicts Renewable Energy Could Power World by 2050 ›
By Andrea Germanos
A group of more than 500 international scientists on Thursday urged world leaders to end policies that prop up the burning of trees for energy because it poses "a double climate problem" that threatens forests' biodiversity and efforts to stem the planet's ecological emergency.
Many people expect the future of transportation to be electric, and that drivers will charge their cars with solar and wind power. Recently, scientists got a window into that future and saw what it could mean for the climate and people's health.
By John Rogers
The Polar Vortex hitting much of the US has wreaked havoc not just on roadways and airports, but also on our electricity systems, as plenty are experiencing first-hand right now. Households, institutions, and communities across the region — and friends and family members — have been hit by power outages, and all that comes with them.
1. Restoring power (safely) is Job 1.<p>First: Some things about all this we won't know until we have the benefit of a few days — or months — of hindsight, and data. But one thing we do know right now is that electricity, which we so often take for granted, is crucial to so many aspects of our lives.</p><p>For some, power outages are an inconvenience. For others, they're <a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/julie-mcnamara/hurricane-irma-power-outage" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">life-threatening</a>. So keeping the power flowing, or getting it back up as quickly as possible, is key. Grid operators need to avoid affecting vulnerable populations and critical infrastructure as much as possible when they're implementing rolling blackouts, and need to prioritize them when they're restoring service.</p><p>While all confronting power outages or near misses are indebted to those working around the clock to keep things from getting worse, keeping crews safe is also key. Weather like this, combined with the ongoing pandemic, sure doesn't make for the easiest working conditions, so utilities and grid operators will need to use really solid judgement about where they can safely focus people, and when, for any needed repairs.</p>
2. The power outages are about both supply and demand.<p>Utilities and grid operators have been hit by the double whammies of unprecedented demand and big challenges on the supply side. On the demand side, for example, Texas on Valentine's Day <a href="https://twitter.com/ERCOT_ISO/status/1361142665140711427" target="_blank">shattered</a> its previous winter peak record by almost 5%. The peak was 11,000 MW above what ERCOT, Texas's electric grid operator, was projecting and planning for as of November — some 15-20 good-sized power plants' worth.</p><p>And on the supply side, power lines taken out by the weather are a piece of it, as you'd expect. But it also turns out that all kinds of power plants have gone offline, for a range of reasons. Take natural gas, for example:</p>
3. Natural gas plants have been hit hard.<p>Gas plants suffer from their own supply-and-demand issues. One piece of it is the fact that the same gas that supplies them is also needed for heating homes and businesses. And if a power plant doesn't have firm contracts to get gas when it needs it, the way gas utilities would, the power plant loses out. The laws of physics may also be coming into play, as any moisture in the gas lines succumbs to the extreme cold and gums up the works—valves, for instance.</p><p>And indeed, initial indications are that a lot of the lost capacity is natural gas-fired. Data from Southwest Power Pool (SPP), the grid operator for much of the Great Plains, <a href="https://marketplace.spp.org/pages/capacity-of-generation-on-outage#%2F2021%2F02" target="_blank">show</a> that 70% of its "outaged" megawatts (MW) were natural gas plants.</p><p>ERCOT, which is powered primarily by natural gas and wind, was <a href="http://www.ercot.com/news/releases/show/225210" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">warning</a> yesterday that "Extreme weather conditions caused many generating units — across fuel types — to trip offline and become unavailable." It <a href="https://twitter.com/Sonalcpatel/status/1361365934204674053" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">clarified</a> elsewhere, though, that the majority of the capacity it had lost overnight was "thermal generators, like generation fueled by gas, coal, or nuclear". In all, Texas was out <a href="https://www.houstonchronicle.com/business/energy/article/Wholesale-power-prices-spiking-across-Texas-15951684.php" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">more than a third</a> of its total capacity.</p>
4. Don’t think an “all of the above” strategy would have saved the day.<p>As ERCOT's messages suggests, this isn't just a gas issue, and these last few days should in no way be fodder for the type of fact-free "all of the above" pushes <a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/jeremy-richardson/rick-perry-rejects-facts-in-favor-of-coal-and-nuclear-bailouts" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">favored</a> by the prior administration.</p><p>For example, many power plants, including all nuclear plants, virtually all coal plants, and a lot of natural gas plants, depend on <a href="https://www.ucsusa.org/resources/water-power-plant-cooling" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">water to cool the steam</a> that drives the electricity-producing turbines. Any power plant dependent on cooling water will run into trouble if that cooling water is actually frozen solid. And they can have their own troubles with fuel availability during extreme cold.</p><p>(While we're on the subject of fossil fuels: Note that the extreme weather has also <a href="https://www.eenews.net/energywire/2021/02/16/stories/1063725119" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">hit oil production</a>, with the Permian basin, for example, down an estimated 1 million barrels a day.)</p>
5. Wind turbines can be winterized (but Texas…?).<p>Wind turbines aren't immune to extreme cold, and initial reports show that they, too, have been hit by this wave. In SPP, wind was the <a href="https://spp.org/newsroom/press-releases/spp-becomes-first-regional-grid-operator-with-wind-as-no-1-annual-fuel-source-considers-electric-storage-participation-in-markets-approves-2021-transmission-plan/" target="_blank">#1 source</a> of electricity last year, and initial data from yesterday suggested it accounted for almost a fifth of the capacity taken offline.</p><p>ERCOT also mentions wind turbines going offline; one source <a href="https://twitter.com/Sonalcpatel/status/1361357248988143620" target="_blank">suggests</a> 4,000 MW of wind was offline yesterday morning, compared with 26,000 MW of downed thermal capacity (mostly gas). Wind is ERCOT's second-largest supplier of power, accounting for 23% of its electricity last year (from a nation-leading <a href="https://cleanpower.org/resources/american-clean-power-market-report-q4-2020/" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">33,000 MW</a>).</p><p>But wind farms going offline appears to be a <a href="https://finance.yahoo.com/news/frozen-wind-farms-just-small-002954294.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">much smaller piece</a> of the picture than detractors will suggest. And wind power has played an important role in keeping the lights on in past extreme cold events (remember the <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/wind-power-bomb-cyclone-2554824592.html" target="_self">Bomb Cyclone</a>?). They can also be at least partially winter-proofed — by hardening the control systems, using the right fluids, and de-icing the blades. But if you don't see weather like this coming…</p>
6. We need to be ready for more extreme weather.<p>And that's one of the lessons to learn from this episode, once we get beyond the immediacy of it all: Past performance is no indication of what's going to be coming at us. We know that climate change is bringing not just overall warming, but also <a href="https://ucsusa.org/resources/does-cold-weather-disprove-climate-change" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">more extremes at <em>both</em> ends</a>. We also know that there are all kinds of ways that <a href="https://www.ucsusa.org/resources/power-failure" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">climate change affects our ability to keep the lights on</a>.</p><p>So we need to be ready, or readier, for situations like this. And it turns out that there are <a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/julie-mcnamara/noreaster-power-grid" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">a lot of ways</a> we can be. Stronger transmission links can <a href="https://mailchi.mp/acore/acore-statement-on-heartland-power-outages?e=a4ae549508" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">allow regions to back each other up</a> when they aren't all facing the same challenges at the same time. A diversity of (clean) power options can mean some might be available even when others aren't. (ERCOT anticipated yesterday morning being able to reconnect customers later that day in part because of "additional wind & solar output".)</p><p>We also <a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/julie-mcnamara/one-way-to-boost-renewables-let-flexible-demand-lend-a-helping-hand" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">don't have to take electricity demand</a> as a fixed, can't-do-anything-about-it quantity. Utilities (including mine, a few days ago) called on customers to <a href="http://www.ercot.com/news/releases/show/225151" target="_blank" rel="noopener noreferrer">be as efficient as possible</a> to get us past the latest crunches. Programs put in place ahead of time can reward customers for delaying or shifting their electricity use.</p><p>And energy storage can be an important middleperson between supply and demand, from the large scale all the way down to battery packs in our garages and basements.</p>
Getting through this, and beyond<p>Right now, the task is getting the power back on. Longer term, the goal shouldn't be about ensuring 100% reliability (because of the prohibitive cost of removing that last fraction of a fraction of a possibility of a blackout), but to make them as infrequent and as limited in duration as possible. It should, though, be about making sure we make <a href="https://www.ucsusa.org/resources/lights-out" target="_blank">decisions</a> that serve us well in the short term and, in the face of climate change, in the long term.</p><p>Blackouts will happen; that doesn't mean we're powerless against them. The need is there, but so are the tools.</p><p><em><a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/author/john-rogers" target="_blank">John Rogers</a> is a senior energy analyst with expertise in renewable energy and energy efficiency technologies and policies.</em></p><p><em>Reposted with permission from the <a href="https://blog.ucsusa.org/john-rogers/polar-vortex-power-outages-6-things-to-know-about-supply-demand-and-our-electricity-future" target="_blank">Union of Concerned Scientists</a>. </em></p>
- What Exactly Is the Polar Vortex? - EcoWatch ›
- Polar Vortex: Everything You Need to Know - EcoWatch ›
- What Exactly Is the Polar Vortex? - EcoWatch ›
- Texas Grid Operator Overcharged Power Companies $16 Billion During Winter Storm - EcoWatch ›
By Mark McCord
- An academic paper suggests key tipping points can significantly reduce carbon emissions, which would help to slow global warming.
- Government policies are making coal uneconomical.
- Electric vehicle pricing structures have helped reduce the number of petrol and diesel cars on the world's roads.
There may be light at the end of the tunnel in the battle to reduce carbon emissions.
Towards the Paris Agreement Targets<p>Such tipping points are hoped to help the world meet the targets of the 2015 Paris Agreement, in which 196 heads of state agreed to reduce global warming to within 2 degrees Celsius above pre-industrial levels, with a preferred target of 1.5 degrees. Were they achieved, experts say the positive impacts would be <a href="https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2020/12/emissions-paris-agreement-two-decades-climate-change-global-warming/" target="_blank">felt within two decades</a>.</p><p>The accord strives for a climate-neutral world by the middle of this century. It's expected to be built upon at the United Nations Climate Change conference, or COP26, which is due to take place in November. The World Economic Forum's <a href="https://www.weforum.org/our-impact/accelerating-climate-action" target="_blank">Climate Initiative</a> strives also to offer globally linked solutions.</p><p>The report in Climate Policy explains how a combination of factors led to the tipping point that prompted the UK to decarbonize its power industry. They included the creation of a carbon tax, an EU scheme that made gas cheaper than coal and an investment strategy for renewable energy that made coal less economical.</p><p>"The power sector needs to decarbonize four times faster than its current rate, and the pace of the transition to zero-emission vehicles needs to double," Lenton said.</p><p>"Many people are questioning whether this is achievable. But hope lies in the way that tipping points can spark rapid change through complex systems."</p><img class="rm-lazyloadable-image rm-shortcode" lazy-loadable="true" data-runner-src="https://assets.rebelmouse.io/eyJhbGciOiJIUzI1NiIsInR5cCI6IkpXVCJ9.eyJpbWFnZSI6Imh0dHBzOi8vYXNzZXRzLnJibC5tcy8yNTU1Njk2MC9vcmlnaW4ucG5nIiwiZXhwaXJlc19hdCI6MTY2MTA0MzY2MH0.aeowRd-sEX7nd5xnijsCNTSSekAtpS3wpEN46KVIPMU/img.png?width=980" id="87cc2" width="1008" height="1132" data-rm-shortcode-id="5ecd42cba66b51b689dea7f817620355" data-rm-shortcode-name="rebelmouse-image" />
Wind and solar accounted for a third of the UK's energy generation in 2020. Statista
Positive Tipping Points<p>Besides the UK, the authors of the paper cited Norway as an example of the nations that have acted to reduce greenhouse gases pumped out by motor vehicles.</p><p>Through government incentives, new electric vehicles (EV) in Norway are priced similarly to petrol and diesel cars. This has <a href="https://www.exeter.ac.uk/research/news/articles/positivetippingpointsoffe.html" target="_blank">boosted sales of EVs to more than 50% of new car purchases, compared with 2%-3% worldwide</a>.</p><p>China, the European Union (EU) and California are responsible for half of global car sales. Professor Lenton suggests that if they formed an international effort to redirect investment from conventional cars to EVs they could reduce costs, boost production and create a broader tipping point that would accelerate the reduction of fossil fuel use.</p><p>Lenton argues that if government action can lower the cost of financing renewables to below that of excavating coal, industries linked to transport, heating and power could all rapidly decarbonize.</p><p>That's good news because a new, more urgent, approach is needed to reduce the rate at which the global climate is warming, according to scientists.</p>
2020 and 2016 Hottest Years on Record<p>Earlier this month, the <a href="https://www.reuters.com/article/climate-change-temperature/2020-ties-with-2016-as-worlds-hottest-year-on-record-eu-climate-change-service-says-idUSL1N2JI1YT" target="_blank">EU's Copernicus Climate Change Service said 2020 had equaled 2016 as the hottest year on record</a>.</p><p>A study published in Climate Dynamics said <a href="https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/01/global-warming-threshold-reached-by-2027/" target="_blank">the planet could breach the threshold for global warming between 2027 and 2042</a>, a decade earlier than previously thought.</p><p>"If either of these efforts – in power or road transport – succeed, the most important effect could be to tip perceptions of the potential for international cooperation to tackle climate change," Lenton said.</p><p><em>Reposted with permission from the </em><em><a href="https://www.weforum.org/agenda/2021/01/climate-change-carbon-emissions-global-warming/" target="_blank">World Economic Forum</a>.</em></p>
By Tara Lohan
Warming temperatures on land and in the water are already forcing many species to seek out more hospitable environments. Atlantic mackerel are swimming farther north; mountain-dwelling pikas are moving upslope; some migratory birds are altering the timing of their flights.
Numerous studies have tracked these shifting ranges, looked at the importance of wildlife corridors to protect these migrations, and identified climate refugia where some species may find a safer climatic haven.
"There's a huge amount of scientific literature about where species will have to move as the climate warms," says U.C. Berkeley biogeographer Matthew Kling. "But there hasn't been much work in terms of actually thinking about how they're going to get there — at least not when it comes to wind-dispersed plants."
Kling and David Ackerly, professor and dean of the College of Natural Resources at U.C. Berkeley, have taken a stab at filling this knowledge gap. Their recent study, published in Nature Climate Change, looks at the vulnerability of wind-dispersed species to climate change.
It's an important field of research, because while a fish can more easily swim toward colder waters, a tree may find its wind-blown seeds landing in places and conditions where they're not adapted to grow.
Kling is careful to point out that the researchers weren't asking how climate change was going to change wind; other research suggests there likely won't be big shifts in global wind patterns.
Instead the study involved exploring those wind patterns — including direction, speed and variability — across the globe. The wind data was then integrated with data on climate variation to build models trying to predict vulnerability patterns showing where wind may either help or hinder biodiversity from responding to climate change.
One of the study's findings was that wind-dispersed or wind-pollinated trees in the tropics and on the windward sides of mountain ranges are more likely to be vulnerable, since the wind isn't likely to move those dispersers in the right direction for a climate-friendly environment.
The researchers also looked specifically at lodgepole pines, a species that's both wind-dispersed and wind-pollinated.
They found that populations of lodgepole pines that already grow along the warmer and drier edges of the species' current range could very well be under threat due to rising temperatures and related climate alterations.
"As temperature increases, we need to think about how the genes that are evolved to tolerate drought and heat are going to get to the portions of the species' range that are going to be getting drier and hotter," says Kling. "So that's what we were able to take a stab at predicting and estimating with these wind models — which populations are mostly likely to receive those beneficial genes in the future."
That's important, he says, because wind-dispersed species like pines, willows and poplars are often keystone species whole ecosystems depend upon — especially in temperate and boreal forests.
And there are even more plants that rely on pollen dispersal by wind.
"That's going to be important for moving genes from the warmer parts of a species' range to the cooler parts of the species' range," he says. "This is not just about species' ranges shifting, but also genetic changes within species."
Kling says this line of research is just beginning, and much more needs to be done to test these models in the field. But there could be important conservation-related benefits to that work.
"All these species and genes need to migrate long distances and we can be thinking more about habitat connectivity and the vulnerability of these systems," he says.
The more we learn, the more we may be able to do to help species adapt.
"The idea is that there will be some landscapes where the wind is likely to help these systems naturally adapt to climate change without much intervention, and other places where land managers might really need to intervene," he says. "That could involve using assisted migration or assisted gene flow to actually get in there, moving seeds or planting trees to help them keep up with rapid climate change."
Tara Lohan is deputy editor of The Revelator and has worked for more than a decade as a digital editor and environmental journalist focused on the intersections of energy, water and climate. Her work has been published by The Nation, American Prospect, High Country News, Grist, Pacific Standard and others. She is the editor of two books on the global water crisis. http://twitter.com/TaraLohan
Reposted with permission from The Revelator.
Massachusetts Gov. Charlie Baker is reviewing sweeping legislation to reduce the commonwealth's greenhouse gas pollution, spur clean energy jobs, electrify buildings, and protect communities disproportionately harmed by pollution.
- The Biggest Environmental Wins and Losses of the 2020 Election ... ›
- Bipartisan Climate Bill Highlights Forest Restoration, Conservation ... ›
- Mass. Gov. Vetoes Climate Bill to Eliminate Carbon Emissions ›
Yoga, in and of itself, is all about mindfulness. While flowing through the motions undoubtedly leads to a greater sense of self, it also helps cultivate a greater sense of connection beyond oneself, extending out toward all things—including the earth, and in that vein, eco-friendly yoga mats.
Amazon<p>Promising to inspire people to become their most empowered selves, Manduka puts full focus on efforts geared toward helping its shoppers be more conscious members of society. </p><p>One such way that it does this is by committing to creating top-of-the-line yoga mats that are designed to last. By creating long-lasting, high-quality mats, Manduka is able to assist shoppers in their efforts to cut back on consumption. What's more, the company ensures that all of its mats are created without harmful chemicals and dyes (which, by the way, have the ability to not only disrupt water sources during the production process but individuals' hormone balance during use). </p><p>But that's not all. In addition to nixing chemicals from all mats, <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07PMFS49L/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B07PMFS49L&linkCode=as2&tag=ecowatch-20&linkId=684c73cdfb279fe6606c330f39930135" target="_blank">Manduka's eKo Mats</a> are made from biodegradable natural tree rubber and manufactured with zero waste and no <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/phthalates-mac-and-cheese-2465226489.html" target="_blank">harmful plasticizers</a>. The PRO Mats are made from the highest quality PVC—a form of synthetic plastic—on the planet and manufactured emissions-free. While PVC is seldom recyclable, Manduka ensures shoppers that they need not worry, as these high-grade PRO Mats are guaranteed to last for life. Once they do meet their demise (if ever), they can be returned through the company's <a href="https://www.manduka.com/pages/live-on" target="_blank">Live On</a> program, in which The Renewal Workshop breaks down the mats and recycles them.</p><p>As sustainable as Manduka's mats are, its accessories are just as earth-friendly, with towels made of <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/plastic-bottle-recycling-uk-supermarkets-2625052129.html" target="_blank">recycled plastic water bottles</a>, blocks made of sustainable cork, and straps made of unbleached 100% natural cotton. </p><p>The point is, if you're looking to fully revamp your yoga routine with mats and accessories, Manduka is your number-one bet. It's a top brand chosen by yoga instructors around the world.</p>
SUGA<p>If you love the ocean as much as you love your yoga practice, you'll swoon over <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B0722NDV2C/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B0722NDV2C&linkCode=as2&tag=ecowatch-20&linkId=3617330315a358a7344ec84556307362" target="_blank">SugaMats</a>. The California-based yoga mat company specializes in mats made of recycled wetsuits. It started as an idea to divert surfers' and scuba divers' old non-biodegradable neoprene wetsuits from entering landfills and now makes all its mats out of donated materials.</p><p>If you have an old wetsuit you'd like to recycle, you can drop it off at one of their partner stores or mail it in and you'll receive a 10 percent discount on your next purchase in return. For every wetsuit recycled, roughly one SugaMat is created. As durable as the mat is designed to be, the brand acknowledges that shoppers may want to replace it at some point. When you're ready, just send your used mat back to Suga to be recycled, and the brand will also give you a discount on a future purchase. Read more about the company's origins in our <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/green-your-down-dog-with-yoga-mats-made-from-100-recycled-wetsuits-1882132431.html" target="_blank">SugaMats review</a>.</p>
Amazon<p>Designed under the premise of "Good for you, Good for the planet," <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B01N5V8XHK/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B01N5V8XHK&linkCode=as2&tag=ecowatch-20&linkId=018b55be114697e2b33999dd8363fdfe" target="_blank">Liforme mats</a> are biodegradable, non-toxic, and PVC-free. The brand prides itself on being eco-friendly, ethical, and socially just, and, as such, they only use the highest-quality materials and focus on conservancy efforts with each and every one of their products. </p><p>By dedicating 5% of sales from two of their collections, they've raised over $200,000 for their charity partner, Friends of the Earth. </p><p>Additionally, from a social justice standpoint, they support women and children's rights, racial diversity, and <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/lgbtq-farms-and-organizations-2646278168.html" target="_blank" rel="noopener">LGBTQ+ rights</a>. And they're not just all talk. They put their money where their mouth is and have donated to various organizations outright, as well as created mats specifically to benefit certain causes, like the Rainbow Hope Mat, in which 5% of sales go to GLAAD, a media-monitoring organization geared toward promoting LGBTQ+ acceptance.</p><p>Beyond charity, the most unique aspect of Liforme mats is that they're tailored to promote balance and stability via their revolutionary grip and alignment system. So, if you've ever had difficulty maintaining balance during your practice, a Liforme mat may be the ultimate choice for you.</p>
Amazon<p>Rhode Island-based health and wellness brand <a href="https://www.amazon.com/gp/product/B07JNK1G61/ref=as_li_tl?ie=UTF8&camp=1789&creative=9325&creativeASIN=B07JNK1G61&linkCode=as2&tag=ecowatch-20&linkId=c3770479c73c05ff26db92b6e3bdd5f4" target="_blank">2nd Wind</a> is renowned for its intricate yoga mats, all of which are made with sustainability in mind. Each mat is made with 100% natural and sustainable cork and rubber, water-based ink, and no glue, latex, PVC, or toxins. Additionally, each mat is biodegradable. Sustainability aside, the artistic appearance of each mat is something to bat a lash at. </p><p>You can purchase 2nd Wind mats that have a rubber face or that have a towel infused mat for added grip. Instead of having to purchase a secondary yoga mat cover, these mats prevent slipping with a soft surface that's heat pressed into the rubber.</p>
Scoria<p>Toronto-based <a href="https://www.scoriaworld.com/products/blossom-cork-yoga-mat" target="_blank">Scoria Yoga</a> is beloved for its eco-friendly cork yoga mats. Each mat is made with sustainably sourced cork and backed with natural tree rubber. The two materials are adhered with eco adhesives that are bonded under high temperatures. Additionally, the designs—which are stunning—are crafted with non-toxic, water-based ink. </p><p>As if the production of each mat isn't enough to swoon over, know that Scoria is partnered with Feeding Children Everywhere and for every mat purchased, 10 meals are donated to those in need. </p><p>What's more, the very meals delivered are sustainable, as they're vegan and wrapped in <a href="https://www.ecowatch.com/companies-rethinking-packaging-2639054932.html" target="_blank">biodegradable packaging</a>. All this is to say, Scoria has brought the idea of sustainability full circle with its cork yoga mats and give-back program.</p>
- Why You Should Avoid PVC Products - EcoWatch ›
- Meet the Woman Making Bamboo Bikes in Ghana - EcoWatch ›
- Can Yoga and Meditation Help Us to Connect With Nature? - EcoWatch ›
A new report from Princeton University released yesterday details five pathways for achieving net zero emissions in the U.S. by 2050, with "priority actions" the U.S. should take before 2030.
- California's First Zero Net Energy Community Is a Model for Future ... ›
- IEA: World Can Reach 'Net Zero' Emissions by 2060 to Meet Paris ... ›
- BP Announces Net Zero Emissions by 2050 Target, but Offers No ... ›
- U.S. Could Reach Net-Zero With More Benefits Than Costs ›