50 Top Environmental Blogs – We broke 35 yesterday which makes this the biggest list on the internet

It is true. I started this meditation on Environmental Blogs in part to make fun of the idea, to also show that experts only really have their opinions about what is the Best Blog and to point out the question – where do you stop? See now that I have done a list of 50…someone will surely come along and do 60 or maybe 75 and 100 of the best of the web. Before I start though I must say:


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OK today it is the lawyers. No I do not believe lawyers are bad or should be made the butt of jokes. In a society where we have a hit TV show about ad men call MAD MEN, where we tolerate used car salesmen and cosmetic sales women, I don’t think lawyers are at the bottom of the dung heap. The good hearted ones actually make the world a better place. As for the oft used quote, “first we kill all the lawyers”, that is proceeded by “how shall we recreate the world of kings”…so please get off it. All of you who have been through a bad divorce or been sued need someone to blame…right?

First up, what is not to like about an attorney who is LEED certified:


The 50% Rule or Why Emails and Statistics Don’t Matter

We have heard a chorus of voices over the past few days raising the moribund concept that climate change is not happening, and is some global liberal conspiracy to devalue oceanfront property in Palm Beach.

At the center of raising the hydrahead of the Palm Beach Conspiracy was the discovery of  some emails from the University of East Anglia where climate change scientists were engaging in the age-old academic practice of arguing with one another.  For a “pro” climate change perspective, Gawker explains the situation here, for an “anti” climate change perspective, the Weekly Standard provides this analysis.

I was guest lecturing at Princeton a few weeks ago, and I used the opportunity to propogate one of my favorite ideas–I call it the 50% Rule. It can be used to explain the Palm Beach Conspiracy, statistics about climate change, and as a means of deflating your brother-in-law’s wild stories about catching a 45 foot trout during holiday meals. Here it goes–when you hear a statistic or a scandal or a wild trout fishing tale, assume the information is off by 50%.  One-half.  Then determine whether the information still matters.  If your brother’s trout was only 22.5 feet, not 45, that’s still a mighty large fish.  Similarly, with climate change, if scientists’ statistics about sea level rise or drought are off by 50%, we are still looking at a serious problem.  The result? We still need to do something about it.

With respect to the Palm Beach Scandal, Micheal Oppenheimer from Princeton on NPR explained it beautifully. The consensus of hundreds of scientists, using many different methodologies, all in competition with one another have reached a consensus that climate change is real and caused largely by man’s actions.  Even if 50% of the data is wrong or subject to bias or manipulation,  that is still hundreds of the world’s best scientists coming to a consensus (which if you have ever had two scientists in a room is a feat in and of itself) coming to the same conclusion.


She is cute too. Oh sorry.


Centerbuild 2009

Hello from the ICSC’s Centerbuild 2009 conference in sunny Scottsdale, Arizona.  While it is certainly cold here at night, the great weather was an added bonus to a conference that was chock full of great information.  The theme this year “Get Smart” lived up to its billing.  The speakers, workshops and roundtables did not disappoint the conference-goers.  The focus of every event was to share information with the latest technologies and Green issues.

I was fortunate to have the opportunity to host a workshop on incentives for green shopping centers.  At the conference, I promised to post our PowerPoint presentations on this blog.  Here is my presentation along with Kent Jeffreys and Greg Stark.  I will post Jim Westberg’s next week.  Due to technical limitations, I cannot post that now.


I know these are hard core sites but you asked for the BEST right? Why China you ask? Well that is where the action is going to be for the next 100 years if our species lasts that long.


he Prospects for Global Cooperation to Address Climate Change at Copenhagen and After

Filed Under Climate Change, Feature Article By Greenlaw · December 8, 2009 · Leave a comment

Download Article (PDF, 141KB)

Download Article (PDF, 141KB)


Representatives from China, the US and all of the other countries of the world will soon gather in Copenhagen, where they will work towards an international agreement to address climate change for the period after 2012.  While there has been enormous progress this year, many observers have begun to worry that countries will be unable to fully bridge their differences in Copenhagen.  Taking both the progress and remaining difficulties into account, we are optimistic that the global community will succeed in creating an international structure for equitably, effectively, and collectively addressing one of the greatest threats to humanity.  Progress will be made at Copenhagen, but for a number of reasons, hammering out the full international agreement may take into next year.


Then there is the movie star:


Million Baby Crawl

Remember when the million man march, a vast grassroots movement, conveyed to the world a different picture of the African American man?

Move over men, it’s baby time.

There’s another march on the way, only it’s not for a million men. It’s not a march either–it’s the Million Baby Crawl.

Seventh Generation has invited me to be a spokeswoman for the Million Baby Crawl, a movement to focus public attention on toxins in household products.

Currently the government only tests 200 of the more than 80,000 chemicals on the market. Who knows how many dangerous ingredients are sitting on our own shelves?
This movement is around to focus attention on protecting our families from toxins secreted in products on the shelves in every American home.

Yes, under our kitchen cabinets, there’s a hotbed of toxic chemical soups marketed as cleansers, polishes, insecticides, etc.


I periodically tout a Blog that appears to have died or become fixed in time. I don’t really care why that happens, it is the content that matters and this site is pretty good:


August 18, 2009

Portland and Seattle Among Test Markets for Electric Vehicle Program

The U.S. Department of Energy has funded a pilot program by eTec Corporation and Nissan North America to deploy up to 5,000 electric vehicles (EVs) in five U.S markets in 2010, including Portland and Seattle. Program participants will have the opportunity to buy new Nissan EV’s at about the cost of an average family sedan, which are expected to be able to travel about 100 miles on a single charge. The federal money is part of a $2.4 billion program to fund battery research and manufacturing, EV development and installation of EV infrastructure.

Portland General Electric (PGE) has already installed 20 EV charging stations in the Portland Metro area and Salem. The program will work with PGE and three Seattle utilities to install an additional 2,550 charging stations in Portland and Seattle, and will install personal charging stations at no cost in the homes of program participants. ZipCar, a popular car sharing service, will also participate in the EV program in Seattle.

I already use ZipCar and love it. I think I’ll look into participating in the pilot program.


Anyway I wish I already had a ZipCar, damn it. These guys focus on New England but again very very into the actual law:


Tuesday, November 10, 2009

Carbon Harvest Energy

Carbon Harvest Energy’s proposal to turn old landfills into no-waste energy producers has been in the news lately, with stories both in the Burlington Free Press and on Vermont Public Radio. Carbon Harvest Energy will be taking a defunct landfill-based methane facility in Brattleboro and turning it into an active, zero-waste, energy-producing facility. According to the Free Press article, the electricity, heat and carbon dioxide produced by the methane-fueled generator will all be utilized. The former landfill will be able to sell the electricity, heat a greenhouse and a fish tank, and use the carbon dioxide as a contribution to an algae farm. The Vermont Food Bank will be the main recipient of the food and fish raised in the facility, and the University of Vermont’s Rubenstein School of the Environment and Natural Resources is partnering with Carbon Harvest to study the algae produced.

Some of these I got from:


50 Best Blogs About Environmental Law

See I am not the only one.


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